Waltherplatz is Bolzano's meeting place. It takes its name from the great medieval German poet, "Walther von der Vogelweide". It is an ideal spot to people-whatch while enjoying a cappucino. The nearby Bozen Cathedral, built between 1340 and 1500 in Gothic style, is well worth a visit, particulary for the Giotto frescoes that grace its Dominican cloisters.
The fruit market and the arcades are the centerpiece of this lively city. At the fruit market, across from the Neptune Fountain, is an 18th-century house built in the neo-Gothic style. Herder, Goethe and Kaiser Joseph II all slept here during their travels in Italy. Rococo and neo-Baroque stucco houses surround the market.
Bozen's rich history derives from its role as a center of trade between the north and the south. Today, Bozen is a modern and dynamic city, the provincial capitol of South Tyrol, and a melting pot for both cultures. Seventy percent of Bozen's residents identify as Italian-speaking, making Bozen the most "Italian" of South Tyrolean cities.
For many years, Bozen has been a university town, and as you might expect, there is lots of culture on offer: cinemas, theater, concerts, exhibitions and other events, imbue this former trading city with boundless energy.
In the shops and boutiques of Bozen's arcade you can find everything form classic South Tyrolean fashions like Loden coats and hats, to the latest in Italian design. Duck int oan enoteca for a glass of the best wine or grappa from South Tyrol, Italy, and beyond. For a view int the wonderful world of Thun ceramics, visit the Thuniversum in South Bozen.
The South Tyrolean Wine Road is the ideal starting point for destinations near and far. From the verdant Etsch Valley, to the rugged peaks of Dolomites, tho the dazzling shores of Lake Garda, the region's landscape is a study in contrasts.
An trip to Alpe di Siusi, in the Dolomites, isn't just for mountaineers and adventurers. This natural landscape, ranging from vast alpine meadows to jagged peaks, is utterly unique.
A trip to Meran should not be missed. Once famous for its spas, Meran exudes old-world charm, from its Art Nouveau architecture and delightful promenades, to its lush Mediterranean vegetation. Meran's "Kurhaus" hosts numerous concerts and cultural events. Be sure to include Trauttmansdorff Castle - the former winter residence of Empress Sisi - and its splendid botanical gardens in your itinerary. The "Touriseum", located in the gardens, illustrates the faschinating 200-year history of alpine tourism. A special Gardens and Spa Wellness package includes entry to the gardens at Trauttmansdorff Castle and admission to Meran's thermal spa complex. See http://www.trauttmansdorff.it/en/planning-your-visit/experience-packages.html
Lake Garda is a short trip, only 80 km. With its lovely villages and spectacular waterfront views, Lake Garda is an idyllic southern destination.
For opera fans, the summer program at the Arena of Verona (about 120km) offers splendid entertainment in a spectacular setting.
This magical city, which seems to float weightlessly above the waters of the Venetian lagoon, is within an easy day's traveling distance of 220 km.