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You are Here: > > Merano

Merano

 
 
Overview

Merano, set at the head of the Val Venosta Valley on the Austrian border is a pretty, elegant and sedate medieval spa town that possesses a charm unique unto it itself. It was famous for its water health cures during the Hapsburg Austrian-Hungarian Empire when the rich and beautiful would converge seeking cures and looking for a social scene, with entertainments such as musical concerts and balls.

Merano now delights not only in transforming health cures at the thermal baths but also in a "grape cure" which involves a copious diet of grapes for the duration of the regime! The entire region is bilingual, speaking not only Italian but German as well.

Kurhaus is on Corso Libertà and used to be the pump rooms but has since been converted into a concert hall. The concerts are very Venetian in style with small orchestras playing waltzes and polkas. The Gothic cathedral is Duomo di San Nicolo and has a pretty crenellated gable. The Castello Principesco is the ancestral home of the Counts of Tyrol and displays many original antiques.

Wandering through the town you will enjoy the arcaded promenade of Via Portici lined with painted houses. Merano's flower-decked streets have terraces, cafés, sumptuous pastry shops, boutiques and waterfalls. One of the best times to visit is in the autumn when strolling down Passeggiata Lungo Passiro an appealing "winter walk" links the north bank of the Passirio River with the so-called Roman bridge and all the trees are turning red and gold. The other optimum time is in the spring when the "summer walk" meanders through a park planted with pine trees and palms, and the valleys are full of wildflowers and apple blossom.

From the town a cable car will take winter sports enthusiasts up to Merano 2000, a ski resort best suited to beginners.




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