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Castles in two languages: Merano and surrounds

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Jul 12th, 2018, 01:50 PM
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Castles in two languages: Merano and surrounds

June 2018 saw me heading solo to Merano in the South Tyrol for a fortnight. The region was part of the Austrian Empire for centuries, forming the southern part of the Tyrol which one thinks of as quintessentially Austrian, but was acquired by Italy in the post WWI carve-up of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It is now formally bilingual, with all the places having bother German and Italian names. (I was somewhat taken aback to find that these dual names are not at all ancient; rather they were completely made up by an Italian nationalist from the Trentino region to the south, which was also transferred to Italy after WWI, but with better reason as it had a higher Italian speaking population. The South Tyrol itself (renamed the Alto Adige by the Italians) was almost completely German speaking before that (with the exception of a few valleys where the language was, and is, Ladin, a language closely related to Swiss Romansch, which mixes elements of Latin, German and the original Rhaetian language of the pre-Roman tribes of the area). The Italian negotiators engaged in what one can only call sharp practice by presenting maps showing their recently invented Italian names of all the towns and villages, making the region look much more Italian than it actually was. Italians from further south were imported in large numbers, and German was banned in public places and schools for a generation. Everyone I spoke to claimed that this was now all history, with prosperity and the EU and determined bilingualism making everyone happy with the status quo.

Merano (formerly Meran) was in the middle ages the capital of the Tyrol before that moved to Innsbruck, and the castle of Tirol which gives its name to the region is in the hills overlooking the city. It enterprisingly developed itself as a spa town in the 18th century despite lacking actual spa waters, and was a favourite location of the Empress Elisabeth (Sissi). It is now a great base for exploring the western part of the South Tyrol. There is a super value local transport card, 28 Euros for a week, allowing free use of all busses and trains in the area, plus some cable cars. The Museumobilcard (only avilable from the tourist information office) is even better, at 34 euros, as this additionally gave free entry to all the public museums of the region (though not privately owned ones) on top of the free transport.

I stayed at the Meranerhof hotel, picked mainly for its central location adjoining the riverside promenade. It turned out to be an excellent pick, with great food and service, free wifi and a very nice large bedroom with a large single bed. There was also a very nice indoor pool. I was overcome by a terrible panic on arriving, when I found that the plug sockets were three pins rather than two making my converters useless. Luckily, when enquiring at the hotel reception where I might buy a converter to the three pins the afternoon I arrived, they kindly lent me one for the duration of my stay.

I had arrived by taxi from Verona airport (a lovely scenic drive) on a Saturday afternoon, on the weekend when the town was taken over by the Asfaltart street art festival. This was a bit less busy than I had anticipated, but involved arts and craft type stalls on the riverside promenade, plus street music performances.
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Jul 12th, 2018, 10:58 PM
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We had a delightful week in the Val Gardena 2 years ago and I considered a longer visit to the surrounding areas, very interested in your report.
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Jul 12th, 2018, 11:37 PM
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I didn't venture into the Val Gardena this time, maybe another trip.

The first full day was really a gentle introduction to the town, and I didn't actually do much beyond getting my Mobilcard sorted out, visiting the tourist info place and having the odd snack, plus a swim in the hotel pool. I had intended to visit the Archeoparc in Schnalstal/Val Senales, in a slightly more accessible area than the place the famous Otzi the Iceman was uncovered, which is an experimental/reconstruction museum on life in Otzi's time. I had really wanted to fit this in the trip, and was dismayed when planning my final itinerary to realise that it would be closed for almost the entire duration of my stay except this first Sunday, when bus times were halved. That meant I absolutely needed to get the 12.16 train from Merano at the latest to connect with the 12.52 bus, and by the time I had got my morning sorted I didn't manage to get to the station in time. It reopened the Monday after I left, following their regular summer closure for maintenance ;( So that was a bit frustrating. It was quite hot and I couldn't face going for a walk on the high Tappeinerweg overlooking the town, which would have been my second choice for the afternoon. A late lunch at a café with a river view was enlivened by the delightful sight of a heron having his lunch on the opposite bank. The river in the centre of Merano (the Passer/Passirio) is gorgeous, wide and shallow, rushing over boulders. Terraces constructed in the late 19th century to prevent flooding are now delightful places to wander, lined with restaurants, and the modern Terme spa building is on the opposite side, across a side road from my hotel.

That evening was the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which is an important festival in Tyrol. As well as the religious significance, it is celebrated today to commemorate the Tyroleans' fight against the French and Bavarian invaders during the Napoleonic wars. I was on a half board deal at the hotel, and Sunday is their 'gala' meal, when there is no choice, and the delicious dessert was a heart shaped confection of yogurt and a sort of jellied fruit topping, to fit the theme. Afterwards, alerted by the hotel staff, we went outside to see the fires in the hills. These are bonfires set up at various spots in the mountains, arranged so that from below the pinpricks of light from each fire lines up with others and together they take the shape of hearts, crosses and crowns. Visibility was not great as after the hit day it had clouded over and started to rain lightly, but it was still a wonderful experience to see them.
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Jul 13th, 2018, 06:01 AM
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Thanks for taking us with you to this region, nonconformist. Despite numerous visits to Italy and Austria I've never ventured into this area where I could practice both my german and italian so it would be a great pick for me.

Thanks also for the history lesson - I had no idea about the recent "italification" of place names.

Why did you pick Merano, may I ask? it does sound as if it made a good centre for you but I wonder what drew you to that particular spot?

Looking forward to further instalments.
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Jul 13th, 2018, 08:32 AM
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It just looked pretty and in an area with lots of historical interest, which would be easy to get around on my own by public transport. It had been on my list for a while, but I hadn't managed to persaude my parents to go there (although I'm convinced they would have loved it). The rail links were a big draw - in one direction Merano is the terminus of the train from Bolzano, Brixen and Brenner, and in the other there is the line to Mals, along the Val Venosta/Vinschgau, which was actually only constructed in the 2000s (although I think it may have revived an older line which existed up to the 1960s. In appearance it really looks Austrian rather than Italian, but Italian food has mixed with the Austrian.

Like a lot of places in Europe, museums and historic sites tend to close on a Monday, so for my first Monday I planned on a more scenic day. This involved taking the half-hourly train to Bolzano/Bozen. I was very impressed by the train - incredibly clean, like everything else in South Tyrol (seriously, it's the cleanest place I've ever been), and it offers free wifi on board. You need to validate the Mobilcard before getting on, by putting it in a little machine at the station - easy to do. The machine stamps a number for the stop on the back of the card, so if an inspector comes along, they can check that. Initial impressions of Bolzano were good - it seemed like a very attractive city, and I would return here later on. It was also slightly more diverse than Merano, which was almost exclusively white - here there was a Sikh gentleman as the station toilet attendant. Incidentally, the loo at Bolzano station was the only one I encountered where you can to pay (two euros!) - everywhere else they were free, and every single one in the entire region was super-clean. I also noted that in a little park between the train station and the bus station, there were several families of what looked like recent migrants from Africa - why there, rather than anywhere else in the city, was not clear.

Anyway, at the bus station I got a bus to Klobenstein/Collalbo, a small, pretty village on the Ritten/Renon plateau, a noted beauty spot in the Dolomites. After a coffee stop I had a walk along a marked path in the woods, which was very pleasantly cool on a hot day. Birds sang, including a cuckoo, and I was rather charmed to see n enterprising little family had made one of the little wayside shrines someone had set up into a nest. This walk included a viewpoint of the famous 'earth pyramids' of the region. To be honest, I was a bit underwhelmed by them, having expected something a bit more monumental. They seemed rather, well, spindly, and the view was a bit distant. But it was a nice outing on a day when there were limited options.

After lunch I went on the cute little railway on the plateau, which took me to Oberbozen/Sopra Bolzano. It was a short but pretty ride, past old barns, meadows, cows, meadows and even a little lake. At the terminus, it connected with the cable car down into the centre of Bolzano. I'm not great with heights, so this was a bit daunting, but the views were fantastic - including some much better views of the earth pyramids. Then it was back to the station and home.
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Jul 13th, 2018, 04:47 PM
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I thought Bolzano looked very promising for a few days too. Your comments reminded me of the kindness of a stranger on our absolutely packed bus from Ortisei to Bolzano where we had to stand for the trip, packed like sardines, it was pretty stifling and my son nearly fainted. A Tunisian man helped, as we sat on the ground while my son recovered, and he told us he worked at the dairy plant in Bolzano.
We noticed what a busy transport hub that train station was, and the area so pretty, we figured it was a potential stop for future trip. Next year we hope to do a bus trip from our base in Scuol that would take us through Mals.
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Jul 13th, 2018, 09:26 PM
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Hi Nonconformist,

Wow, this is a new place for me, and it looks gorgeous!! Thank you so much for writing about it and piquing my interest! It's also not very far from where I live, so really is a great gift. Thanks so much!

s
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Jul 14th, 2018, 01:55 AM
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Congratulations, Nonconformist!
Unlike most posters in this forum, you speak about culture, History and languages.

Just a few additional information for the very few people interested in such things:
The highest situated canon used by austro-hungarian forces during WW1 can be visited at Passo Cevedale (3300m), close to Rifugio Casati.
You find a lot of WW1 stuff in the museum of the fortress of Trento. Another information center, mainly about the period 1918-1945, is situated in the cellar of the former Mussolini monument at Bolzano/Bozen
Under the fascist regime, all Geman speaking citizens had to change their names into Italian one's, not only in Tyrol, but also in Aosta Valley (French speaking) and Pomat Valley (Swiss German speaking). Even the names on gravestones were changed! So, for example, a Hans Zurbriggen became a Giovanni dal Ponte. Of course, it was stictly forbidden to speak German, even at home!
During WW2, a lot of South Tyrolians were relocated in Bohemia and Moravia where they got farming land from local people expropriated by the German occupants. They all turned back in 1945.
By italianizing village names, Italian autorities could have used the ancient Ladin names. But often, they didn't. So, the city of Bruneck (Bornetch in Ladin) got Brunico (and not Borneggio). The same with Glurns, the smallest walled city of the Alps. Instead of using the Ladin name Gluorn, they created the horrible name "Glorenza".

The highest situated hotel in the Alps is in South Tyrol too: Hotel Grawand at 3212 metres above sea level (100 m higher than Gornergrat hotel).

Ladin is widely spoken in Val Gherdeina/Groedental/Val Gardena, Val Funes/Vilnoesstal and Alta Badia; a bit less around Cortina d'Ampezzo. East of this area begins the domain of the Furlan language (Friulano) which is spoken up to the Slovenian border.
The local timetable of South Tyrol is edited in 4 languages: German, Italian, Ladin and English: https://www.sii.bz.it/lad/siipdfOldtimetables
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Jul 14th, 2018, 03:10 AM
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<<Congratulations, Nonconformist!
Unlike most posters in this forum, you speak about culture, History and languages.>>

Your are absolutely right to thank nonconformist for a superb TR, but frankly, Neckervd, you put me right off reading the rest of what you had to say by your completely unnecessary side swipe at the many people here who take the trouble to write trip reports. if you don't want to read them, fine. There is surely room here on Fodors for every style of writing.
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Jul 14th, 2018, 04:48 AM
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Anhing:
I don't want to offend anybody. But it's just a statistical fact that most posters in this forum are not interested in European " culture, History and languages".
If I wouldn't accept that, I wouldn't answer questions in this forum.
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Jul 14th, 2018, 05:15 AM
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Back to the report.

The next day, which was Tuesday, I returned to Bolzano (Bozen in German). As I mentioned yesterday, it is a very attractive Alpine city which looks very Austrian. This is the town with the highest percentage of Italian speakers today, because during the 1920s and 30s a lot of Italians from all over Italy were imported to work in a large number of new factories which were set up partly to encourage Italianisation.

I started with the cathedral, which is quite small and relatively austere inside for a Catholic cathedral. Then I visited the Museo Mercantile, as this was only open in the mornings. It's not one of the best known places to visit in the area, but I really enjoyed it. It is a beautiful 18th century building building which was the site of the mercantile guild of Bozen and its court, small but interesting, and very well maintained and decorated.

Next it was on to the archaeology museum which is based around poor Otzi the Iceman. This was one of the busiest places I visited, and it did feel a bit crowded. It must be awful at the height of the season. It felt a bit morbid queuing up to observe poor Otzi's weirdly shiny corpse, but the presentation of all his goods and the explanatory captions and research which has been done on Otzi and his world is impressive. Also, unlike a lot of the museums I visited, which had captions only in German and Italian (understandably, and luckily I can read Italian reasonably well and German a bit, so I could make out most of what they said), here there was documentation in English. A lot of money has been invested in this museum, and it shows.

I then visited the main civic museum, which is also expensively presented, but I was a bit less impressed by the contents.

Returning after lunch to the main Walther square, where the cathedral is situated, I took the free shuttle minibus to Schloss Runkelstein/Castel Roncolo. Having arrived there, I was slightly daunted by the very steep cobblestoned path leading up to the castle itself, especially as it was starting to rain, but gritted my teeth and made it up. It was worth the climb, as this is a truly gorgeous castle. Like a lot of castles in the area, it had fallen into ruins before being thoroughly restored in the late 19th century, but is now very well maintained and presented for visitors. The highlight here are some superb medieval frescoes, including a cycle based on an Arthurian story. The views are great too, as you'd expect from a castle built high on a rock overlooking the river it was built to protect.

If you tell the staff at the ticket office when you're leaving, they will call the shuttle bus to meet you. It had been raining all the time I was there, so although the path was not actually slippery at all, I felt nervous coming back down it, and I was touched and grateful hat the driver kindly came and helped me down the last part of the way.

Although all these visits were relly interesting, none of them took all that long, so as my Mobilcard meant I could travel as much as I wanted, I decided to take the train on to Klausen/Chiusa, which I had read was very charming. Luckily it had stopped raining now, and I enjoyed strolling down the very long, pretty village street. I visited the little village museum, in the old convent building, but there wasn't much to see there. I then got the train back to Merano.
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Jul 14th, 2018, 06:03 AM
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I suspect that your travel style is a little like mine, Nonconformist - I like visiting museums but I tend not to spend that long in them, especially if I'm on my own. Those who insist on looking at every exhibit or reading every information board are likely to find that I have been sat in the cafe and finished my drink long before they've finished looking round the museum. So places with several small museums are perfect for me.

This sounds like my kind of day.
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Jul 14th, 2018, 07:19 AM
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I look at the things I'm interested in, but I read fairly fast so don't always need long. One thing I noticed was that the museums and castles tend not to have cafes, or only the most basic sort.

The next day it rained almost all day, but I had a fabulous day regardless. Today was focussed on the museums of Merano itself. None of them opened very early, so after a quick look at the old Kurhaus, a beautifully decorated building once used as the spa centre, I started by wandering around the old town, on the opposite bank of the river from my hotel. A particular feature, also seen on Bolzano, is arcaded shopping streets which I imagine were to protect shoppers from snow and rain in the winter, and excessive sun in the summer. The shops themselves were mainly clothes shops, but the ambience was quite charming. There was a small market setting up in one street, and I was rather charmed to see one stallholder who had her two little dogs sitting on the stall as she pulled it into position. SAt the end of the arcades (Lubergasse or Portici) St Nicholas's church is the old parish church of Merano,, and was quite attractive.

The first museum to open was the Women's Museum. This was a bit disappointing because although it had some interesting items, it didn't seem to have decided what it wanted to be. Occupying a former Poor Clares convent, the collections were a mixture of fashion items and feminist history, not very cohesively brought together or giving a specific insight into the history of women in Merano specifically, which would have been interesting. Actually the most interesting item (sensitive male readers look away now?) was a small display on history examples of sanitary protection which was eye-opening. Downstairs there was a temporary exhibition of art, historic and modern, inspired by the story of St Wilgefortis, none of it of a very high quality. She was supposedly a saint who preserved her virginity when a pagan father forced her into an unwanted marriage by growing a beard. Some of the more modern art and information panels expanded on this to explore transgender issues. (They failed to mention that the saint is now widely understood to have been based on a misunderstanding of a painting of Jesus.) Generally, this museum felt well meaning but amateurish.

In complete contrast, I then went to the Castello Principesco (can't remember the German name, which was a bit tricky). For once, this was a castle on ground floor level; really more of a stately home than a fortress, it was the Merano home of the Counts of Tyrol and their Habsburg successors. It was a really enchanting little place. There is a British connection, as one of the residents, for whom it was substantially altered in the 15th century, was the Scottish princess Eleanor who married the Austrian archduke who governed Tyrol. Her coat of arms is carved into the wooden panelling in what was her bedroom.

The last museum I visited in Merano was the Palais Memming, the local civic museum and art gallery which occupies one of the grand mansions of the town, plus a modern extension. I really liked this. It was presented more simply than its equivalent in Bolzano, but had much more interesting exhibits illustrating local history. I particularly liked the series of old paintings of Merano showing its development over time.

Then it was time for lunch in a local café. I then walked to the station and got the train to Naturns/Naturno. This was the first time I had taken the Val Venosta/Vinschgau line. Unlike the Bolzano-Brenner line this did not have wifi, and only one train an hour rather than two, but otherwise it was comparable with immaculately clean modern carriages. At Naturns I transferred to the bus for a scenic bus ride up the Schnalstal/Val Senales; the stop was very clearly signposted from the station platform and the times pretty well connecting with the train. This is the bus I would have taken to go to the Archeoparc, but today I just looked at it as a chance to see some pretty scenery from undercover. It was about an hour from Naturns to the terminus, and it was well worth doing. The narrow valley is incredibly gorgeous, and the bus climbs steeply into the mountains, frequently switching back and forth. There were various potential stops at villages, and lovely views of the mountains, wild flower meadows, waterfalls, sheep and cows with bells, and even, not far from the top, a rather pretty little lake or reservoir. I was amused to see an adventure site cashing in on Otzi by calling itself the Otzi Rope Park. Otzi himself died beyond the point the road goes up to, in one of the glaciers higher up, but I did see snow close up and the air was cold and fresh. (It had stopped raining by now.) The little village at the end of the ride really only had a couple of restaurants, so I decided not to stick around but rescanned my pass and stayed on the bus for the return journey. Obviously most people use the bus as a starting point for walks., and we picked up a lot of tired looking people with walking equipment on the way back.
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Jul 14th, 2018, 08:52 AM
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You are certainly making Merano sound very attractive for an extended stay. it seems as if there are plenty of alternatives for excursions depending on weather and interests. Regarding arcades, according to the History museum in Bologna, [which has over 300kms of arcades] most Italian towns and cities had arcades in the medieval times, but most of them lost them; nice to know that Merano and Bolzano both kept theirs.
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Jul 14th, 2018, 01:01 PM
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Thanks for this write-up!

A German woman I know, when I told her I was going to Southern Tyrol, was quite perplexed that I hadn't included Merano. "Not Merano??? Why not???" Your report verifies her enthusiasm about the place.

I spent a night and a day in Bolzano last year and thoroughly enjoyed it.
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Jul 14th, 2018, 01:12 PM
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On our first trip to Europe together, in 1991, we spent the first night in Merano (after driving from Munich) and stayed at the Meranerhof! When we were back in the Val Gardena about 10 years ago, we made a side trip to Merano just for old times' sake. Thanks for the report!
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Jul 14th, 2018, 02:06 PM
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Wonderful to read your experiences of places I had read about when deciding on a north Italy itinerary 2 years ago, while we didn't include them, they stayed on my radar and your report will be kept for future reference.
We did stop inTrento on our way to Ortisei, stunning town - if anyone else reading this is looking for more ideas.
Good to see the bus connections into valleys worked for walkers, that is always a consideration for us.
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Jul 15th, 2018, 06:35 AM
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I visited Trento from Lake Garda a few years ago - another great city with an interesting history.

After those two days with rain, the rest of the time was hot. Very hot. I was so grateful my hotel room had effective air conditioning. Out and about it could get very hot indeed, after about 9.30 am, and hotter and hotter until late afternoon.

Thursday I took the bus to Dorf Tirol (literally Tirol village) /Tirolo, and Schloss Tirol/Castel Tirolo, a short (15 min) journey into the hills immediately overlooking Merano. There is also a chairlift up from Merano. The cable car above Bolzano earlier in the week was quite scary enough for me. I have no truck with chairlifts. The bus was a much more civilised option. One word on busses: all the local busses stopped at the train station, then generally at a range of stops in town, but it was not always clear which stops for which line, additionally complicated by a temporary disruption by trimming trees on some roads, so usually I walked to the station to get my bus. The walk there was quite pleasant, initially along the river.

From the village of Tirol there is a c.30 minute walk to get to the castle. This a fairly easy walk along a paved path - really, technically, a road, but with little to no traffic. It offers spectacular views over the valley, with lots of birds singing including another cuckoo. Some is uphill, but not too hard. The only slightly nervewrecking part is that it goes through a barely lit tunnel, but safety concerns are allayed by a set of traffic lights, set to offer times for pedestrian and vehicular traffic.

Schloss Tirol is a very impressive and rather old castle, dating back to at least the 11th century, with excavations, which you can see in an underground area, showing a presence there since Roman times. As you will have guessed, it gave its name to the entire Tirol region, as the castle owners became Counts of Tirol in the middle ages. The last countess, who had no surviving children and a dubious marital history*, bequeathed Tirol to the Habsburgs, which is how it became part of Austria in the first place, in the 1360s. The castle has been converted into a museum of the history of Tirol, and is nicely presented with some interesting exhibits. The written captions were mostly only in German and Italian, but there were English audio recordings available. There was a very minimal café, but I had brought a sandwich with me which I enjoyed in the pleasant grassy central area. From outside the castle there were wonderful views.

*Both Schloss Tirol and the Castello Principesco in Merano claim to be the location of Countess Margaret's second, initially bigamous, marriage. (Her first marriage was subsequently annulled.)

Rather than going all the way back to the village, I went back part way to where the path forked to Schloss Brunnenberg/Castel Fontana, perched on the side of the cliff. This was a much steeper pathway, going down quite a long way, although still quite easy walking on a roadway. The castle is very romantic looking, and is another one which was restored from ruins in the late 19th century, to become a family home again. It was in fact the home of the illegitimate daughter of the American poet and Fascist sympathiser Ezra Pound, and he also lived there for some years You can see inside a handful or rooms, mainly as a museum to Pound, probably of limited interest to the general visitor, but there is an English-language BBC TV documentary on Pound to watch. Also there is a 'museum of agricultural history' in the farm buildings attached. To be honest, this was more like an enthusiast's personal collection of tools and artefacts than a real musuem. They were quite well arranged by type of use, but there was minimal signage (not even in Italian or German) and not much in the way of interpretation. Allegedly there were animals there too but these turned out to consist of only two goats, two turkeys and three geese.

I made my way back to Dorf Tirol for ice cream and a cold drink before making my way back to Merano and a long refreshing dip in the pool.
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Jul 15th, 2018, 10:20 PM
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Friday I took the Vinschgau/Val Venosta train all the way to the terminus at Mals, which took 1 hour 20 minutes. It is a very scenic journey, mostly immediately beside the river. There, I got the hourly Swiss postbus to Clostra San Jon (in Romansch), St John's Convent in the Swiss village of Muestair, a UNESCO World Heritage site. My South Tirol Mobilcard covered this 25 minute journey too, although it doesn't for the whole of the bus route, which goes ultimately to Zernez. I was told the card allows one journey each way on this route, but as you don't need to scan the card on the Swiss bus, just show it to the driver, this can't be enforced. I had taken my passport with me, but there were no checks in either direction, and the border was barely noticeable. It was another pretty ride, with the scenery becoming noticeably wilder (in the sense of less cultivated) as we got into Switzerland. The stop was easy to identify, but arriving the same time as a tour bus, I decided to wait and have a cooling sorbet in the nearby hotel/restaurant Chavalatsch before going in.

The convent was personally founded by Charlemagne and has some exceptionally old frescoes (although the very oldest have been removed to a museum in Zurich), hence its World Heritage designation. It is still an active convent, albeit with only none nuns, all elderly apart from two or three recently brought in from the Philippines. They make soap etc to sell in the gift shop. The older parts of the convent building have been converted into a very good museum about what life was like for former generations of nuns. I really enjoyed this place - extremely interesting. Many of the nuns in times past came from the nearby South Tirol and farther afield. (There is a daughter convent called Marienberg on the Tirol side of the border which I didn't visit.)

I had lunch at the place I had had my sorbet at earlier, sitting outside next to a wildflower meadow, which was very pleasant. I was expecting sticker shock from being in Switzerland, but actually felt the prices here were reasonable.

On my return journey I didn't go all the way to Mals, but stopped off in the adorably tiny walled town of Glurns/Glorenza. This is a really delightful little place, but is a bit touristy - one of the busiest places I visited after the Otzi museum. It also betrayed the South Tirol's reputation for tidiness by having a piece of litter in the street - the only place I saw any It was a lovely place just to stroll around. I also visited the little town museum, open afternoons only,situated in one of the gate towers. This was nothing special - my favourite bit was seeing the little birds nesting in the eaves rather than the actual exhibits.

I picked up one of the local busses at that end of the town (the Swiss bus dropped off at the far end), and went back to Mals for my train journey home.
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Jul 16th, 2018, 01:32 AM
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Lovely! Am going to Müstair next year, my husband’s cousin is a monk in a monastery here in Australia, recruitment quite a challenge here too.
Including Glurns on that post bus trip, too, a walled town is a must for an Aussie!

Also have been looking up your other destinations, so have got yet another bucket list going, LOL.
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