Sightseeing in val venosta

Tower in Lake Reschen – Landmark for the Vinschgau Valley

Next to the Reschen pass where the River Etsch has its origin, a sole church tower rises up out of the water. When the reservoir was built, an entire village was flooded. The inhabitants were forced to resettle and their homes fell victim to the flood. The upper part of the church tower (see image) is still visible today, changing with the water level. Numerous legends and storeys have grown up around the church tower and the flooding event. In summer the lake is a popular recreation resort. In winter the wind around the lake attracts many ice sailors and ice surfers. Note: Local storeys tell that the ringing of the bells can still be heard deep below. Distance to the hotel is approx. 40 minutes by car.

Castle Chur at Schluderns

The “Churburg” is the majestic castle of the Vinschgau Valley. Situated at the entrance to the Matscher Valley, the castle combines elements of the Romance, Gothic, and Renaissance period. In the image you can see the view from Schluderns. Worth seeing are especially the Madonna sculpture, the death shields in the chapel, and the Renaissance vaulting in the painted archway, arousing admiration not only among the art experts. Additionally you may visit:
* The Jacob’s chamber of the 16th century as well as the Jacob’s chapel,
* the Matscher hall with the gallery of ancestral portraits,
* Europe’s largest privately owned armour collection,
* Trader’s room with the so-called Lutschernen.
The castle can be visited from 20th March to 31st October, it is definitely worth a visit. Distance to the hotel is approx. 35 minutes by car.

Marienberg Monastery, Europe’s highest Benedictine Abbey

Il The Monastery Marienberg is located within the municipality of Mals (see image) at 1340 m. It was donated by the Count of Tarasp in the 12th century and has a long tradition as a place in education. In 1724 the monks founded a humanistic gymnasium in Meran, and in the 20th century the rooms of Marienberg were even used as a private gymnasium. Today the monks work in adult education: meditation, reflection, and contemplation can be found in weekend courses and during longer stays with the monks. It offers an ideal counter balance in our hectic times. Worth seeing is especially the crypt with its Romance frescos which can be visited with a guided tour:
* 1st May – 30th June: 10:45 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
* 1st July – 30th September: 10:00 and 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 and 4:00 p.m.
* 1st November – 30th April: appointment required
* No tours on Saturday afternoons, on Sundays and on church festivals
Currently the Monastery has 11 members, seven Fathers and four Brothers, who live according to the order of St. Benedict or Nursia. Distance to the hotel is approx. 40 minutes by car.

Glurns, smallest town of the Alps

Experience city life from another point of view. In 1304 Glurns was first mentioned in the records as “town”. Situated in the region where three countries meet – Switzerland, Austria, Italy – Glurns is considered as the smallest town of the Alpine region. The completely preserved circular town wall (see image), the renaissance towers, the arbour walks, and the numerous buildings from the 13th to 16th century all add up to the special charm of this small town. Following a restoration in the 1970ies this Vinschgau town was revived and is a visitor’s must today. Note, that Glurns has approximately only 800 inhabitants. Distance to the hotel is approx. 35 minutes by car.

Marble from Laas

Laas is a village with 3500 inhabitants, and is situated 868 m above sea level. You may be acquainted with the name Laas already. In the mountains above Laas the world famous marble is mined. In the village itself evidence of the “white gold” can be found at many places, for example the Romanesque apse of the parish church. This craftsmanship is taught at the local school for stonemasonry. Together with the neighbouring villages Allitz, Eyrs, Tanas, and Tschengels Laas offers absolute relaxation: hikes up to the “Laaser Spitze“ (3000 m), biking on the numerous paths in the surrounding, or experience the Vinschgau air while hang-gliding. If you are longing for something more quite, choose the contemplation path with its wooden sculptures. We especially recommend a trip on the Panorama Road via Allitz and a stop over at the church St. Sisinius. Distance to the hotel is approx. 35 minutes by car.

Castle Juval at Naturns – the home of Reinhold Messner

Named after Juval, a village next to Kastelbell, the castle towers above the entrance to the Schnals Valley. In 1983 Reinhold Messner purchased the building of the 13th century. Since then Castle Juval is used as a museum, a wine-growing estate, an inn, and an organic farm in one. You will be amazed at the collection of masks put together from five different continents, the world-greatest collection of Tibetan artefacts, and the gallery of mountain images. Moreover, the “cave of inspiration”, the “house of trolls and gnomes”, and Reinhold Messner’s mountaineering equipment are waiting for you. Since 1995 the castle is open to the public.
* Sunday before Easter – 30th June and 1st September – beginning of November daily from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., closed on Wednesday
* During the summer Reinhold Messner lives in the castle himself.
Note that you can access the Castle from the car park in Juval with the shuttle service or via the Stabner or Tscharser path. Distance to the hotel is approx. 35 minutes by car.

Botanical Gardens of Trauttmansdorff

Located on the eastern edge of Meran, the gardens offer a tour through the flora of our planet. Eleven pavilions dedicated to different themes are found on the twelve-hectare area. Amongst those are:
* Sun gardens with plants from the Mediterranean, at its southern slope there is the most northern olive garden of Italy.
* The water and terrace gardens include gardens organized according to Italian principles and a shrub garden in the English style.
* Landscapes of South Tyrol including examples reaching from natural to cultural scenery, from the highest peaks down to the bottom of the valleys.
* Forest gardens showing deciduous and conifer trees from Asia and America.
Opening hours are (no day off):
* 15th March – 15th November from 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
* 15th May – 15th September from 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Animals are not admitted. Additionally you can find the tourism museum “Touriseum” in the Castle Trauttmansdorff (since 2002, see image). Distance to the hotel is approx. one hour by car.

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