Yoga, wine and a good night of sleep
3 October 2022
The orange facade of Parkhotel Mondschein in the heart of Bolzano is covered with ivy and surrounded by trees with the mountain peaks of the UNESCO World Heritage site Dolomites in the distance. On the with Hay furniture decorated terrace waiters come and go with glasses of wine for locals and tourists alike. In about an hour a movie starts in the open air cinema. It is our first look at South Tyrol. A region known for wine, nature, Italian food and wellness.
The Northern part of Italy has a couple of beautiful villages such as Bolzano, Merano, Lana and Brixen. Expect pastel colored buildings, along ice cream parlors, Italian restaurants and museums while the mountains are never far away. In Bolzano the COS Store has a third floor where fresco’s are combined with COS-style architecture. Museion is the museum for contemporary art. And the best place to stay in Parkhotel Mondschein.
Bolzano is also a good starting point to explore the Alto Adige Wine Route. We’ve stopped at several of the big wine houses, but also downloaded the Raisin app to find some independent natural wine makers and ended up at the winery of Thomas Niedermayr. There are many in the region, but this was also a recommendation from the owner of the hotel we were staying. We got a tour and a tasting and brought some bottles with us back home. It’s also interesting to see the difference in architecture. Some, like Tramin, are very modern, while others are still in old farms.
We’ve then travelled to Lana, a smaller village where Villa Arnica opened the doors just before the pandemic. It’s an adult-only hotel with only 10 suites in a private building. The classic interior brings you back to a different time. The villa has a big garden, swimming pool, pool house and a yoga space. At night you can just lay on one of the lounge beds and look at the sky filled with 1000s of stars. The hotel next door (Hotel Schwarzschmied) has a spa where you can book massages, facials and more.
In 20 minutes from Lana you’ll arrive in Merano, the thermen capital of South Tyrol. There are a few cool spots such as the Kunsthaus and Forno Bakery you have to add to your list. Apfelhotel is located slightly north of Merano reachable via a hairpin road through the mountains. The family hotel has an architectural spa awarded with the best hotel spa of Europe and is the ideal hotel if you want to do nothing more than to relax.
Brixen is another beautiful medieval town where I would recommend you to visit Alter Schlachthof for lunch. Decantei is also a recommendation. From this part of South Tyrol you can start exploring more of nature as the Dolomites are even closer. Visit the LUMEN Museum on top of a mountain or make the ultimate Instagram picture at Pragser Wildsee. We’ve stayed in a hotel in Meranza and did a hike in the mountains, where you can ski in winter.
Check out: www.suedtirol.info