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Sightseeing in Merano - what to see. Complete travel guide

In the Italian province of South Tyrol or the Autonomous Province of Bolzano, there is an interesting resort destination that attracts an increasing number of tourists – Merano. This is a relatively small Alpine town that has a charming location at the entrance to the Passeier Valley. High mountains surround the settlement. Foreign tourists admire Merano not only for its picturesque views. This Italian resort is a popular spa destination famous for its thermal springs with healing properties. Italians, in their turn, know this town well - they often call Merano “the blooming paradise” because this area is the location of one of the largest subtropical parks. Consider visiting this park during your stay in Merano as this is an incredibly diverse and attractive place.
First settlers in the Passeier Valley came to this region in the first millennia BC. In 15 BC, the Romans captured the settlement and added the valley to the territory of the Roman Empire. The Romans decided to make a military camp here and called it Statio Maiensis. This station became the basis for the future town of Merano. In the Middle Ages, the settlement joined the County of Tyrol. Merano officially became a town only in the 13th century. After that, at the beginning of the 60s of the 14th century, the county was handed over to the Habsburg dynasty. This is how merino turned into a part of Austria.
In the first half of the 15th century, the reigning Duke Friedrich IV ordered to change the capital of Tyrol and moved his residence to another developing settlement – Innsbruck. Naturally, this had a devastating impact on the former center of the county. Merano quickly lost its importance, and the town’s economy suffered from a recession. When World War I ended, Italy added Merano to its territory. At that time, Mussolini was setting his fascist regime in the country. After the second world conflict, South Tyrol and the town itself became popular centers of tourism. Merano turned into a popular stop for foreign guests who were traveling in Italy. Copyright www.orangesmile.com
What makes Merano so popular? Gorgeous Italian castles are the first thing that comes to mind when describing the town’s attractions. No doubt, fantastic Trauttmansdorff Castle is on that list. The gorgeous Neo-gothic estate was built in the 50s of the 19th century as a residence of the Trauttmansdorff Counts. The castle wasn’t attracting much attention because almost no one knew about it until the Empress of Austria Elizabeth visited it one day. After the royal visit, the castle quickly gained recognition. Since that time, numerous tourists have visited this place to see the gorgeous architectural treasure of Merano.
For decades, Trauttmansdorff Castle has been famous for its fabulous gardens that have turned into a popular recreation area in the town. The garden features a large collection of plants from different parts of the world. During a walk here, visitors can see an olive grove and a Japanese garden, look at an unusual hill with various species of cacti, and even admire an interesting water garden. Naturally, Alpine plants have a central place in this picturesque park. The garden occupies an area of twelve hectares in total, consists of eight botanic sections, and has many thematic installations and charming paths.
The Tyrol Castle is one more architectural landmark that is worth the attention of tourists. This was a family estate of the Counts of Tyrol. Starting from the 14th century, since the inception of the noble dynasty, the family has been living in this castle. The counts continue living in the gorgeous building even in modern times. Although the Tyrol Castle has permanent dwellers, one wing of the building is open for visitors. Tourists are welcome to see the beautiful halls in the Renaissance style and look at the exhibited paintings. However, a collection of old weapons is, perhaps, the most popular part of the castle.
In Merano, vacationers can visit a very unusual establishment – the Women’s Museum. All items in this museum are dedicated to women and their passions. Female travelers interested in fashion will find it particularly interesting to visit this place. The exhibited items shed light upon the development of fashion through centuries and tell us about the women of the past, their wishes and hobbies. Additionally, there are many clothing, jewelry pieces, and shoes of different periods. During an excursion in the Women’s Museum, visitors can learn about the traditional tasks and duties of women in different centuries and can see antique house tools.
The closest airport is situated thirty kilometers from Merano. It receives international flights. After that, tourists need to get on a shuttle bus or call a taxi. If you are traveling from another Italian city, you need to reach the Bolzano station and then make a change to a train or bus to Merano. When traveling in a car, choose road A22 that connects Bolzano and Merano. The journey time can be up to forty minutes.

City tours, excursions and tickets in Merano and surroundings

Reference information
Map of all castles
Survived castles around Merano
♥   Castle 'Schloss Brunnenburg' Merano, 2.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Castle Tyrol' Merano, 2.6 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Trauttmansdorff Castle' Merano, 2.8 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Monteleone Castle' Roncofreddo, 3.9 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Castle 'Treuenstein Castle' Bolzano, 23.1 km from the center. On the map   Photo
Map of all parks
National and city parks around Merano
♥   National Park 'Parco nazionale dello Stelvio' , 53 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   World Heritage Site 'The Dolomites' , 60.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Nature Park 'Kaunergrat-Pitztal-Kaunertal' , 63.7 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Nature Park 'Ötztal' , 66.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Nature Park 'Hochgebirgsnaturpark Zillertaler Alpen' , 69.1 km from the center. On the map   Photo
Map of all art museums
Art galleries in Merano and around
♥   Art museum 'South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology' Bolzano, 24.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo

Sights around Merano from our guide 'Extreme places on Earth'

Santa Caterina Valfurva

From the series “Top 13 Furious Ski Resorts and Pistes”
One of the most distinctive peculiarities of the health resort is the thermal springs located on its territory, near which the modern health centers were opened. The ski season on Santa Caterina Valfurva takes quite long. On some high mountain passes you can ski since the second half of November until the end of May. Santa Caterina Valfurva is not only a good spa for fans of the extreme sports, but also a very picturesque area, where you can relax at any time of the year. … Read further

Dolomiti

From the series “16 Most Fascinating Objects of Unesco in Italy”
Many people choose Dolomiti for a winter vacation. There are a lot of various placed of interest and good ski routes. Ski resort Arabba is one of the most extreme in the world. There you can find the most complex routes. The beginners in skiing or families can go to Tre Valli. It has a lot of entertainment and rich nature. … Read further
Car rental on OrangeSmile.com Rentals in Merano

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Sightseeing in regions nearby Merano

All about Merano, Italy - sightseeings, attractions, touristic spots, architecture, history, culture and cuisine. Prepare your trip together with OrangeSmile.com - find out the 'must see' things in Merano, which places to visit, which excursions to take, where the breathtaking views are waiting for you. Planning your trip with this travel guide will help your to get the most out of Merano in few days.
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