Being backdropped by the Dolomites and Italian Alps, Italy’s South Tyrol — also known as Alto Adige — is a must-visit for nature lovers. In winter, South Tyrol is ideal for skiing and snowboarding; in the summer, it’s perfect for those who love hiking and biking. Dotted with charming towns, boasting breathtaking scenery, and renowned for its wines, this special area has lots of fascinating places to discover.
The northernmost region in Italy, Alto Adige or South Tyrol borders Switzerland and Austria. One of the two regions making up Trentino-Alto Adige, Alto Adige was part of Austria until the end of the World War I. A predominantly German-speaking region, it has signs in German, Italian and in a language called Ladin, spoken by about 30,000 of the residents. The area is divided into eight different districts.
Airway services in the area
Alto Adige’s only airport is outside of Bolzano (main city), and serves only domestic flights. A daily flight run from Rome to Bolzano.The nearest international airport is in Verona, situated 90 miles (150km) from Bolzano. From Verona’s Villafranca airport, a bus runs every 20 minutes to the main train station in Verona and from there you can catch the train to Bolzano. There are also direct bus transfers to Bolzano and other South Tyrolean towns from the airports at Milan Malpensa, Bergamo, and Verona. These transfers must be booked at least 48 hours ahead of time, and prices start at 44 euro, one-way.
The region has a very well-organized public transport system. The Mobilcard, valid for one, three or seven days at the price of 15, 23, or 28 euro respectively, gives you access to all the region’s public transport, including the buses, regional trains and cable cars. Tickets can be purchased at tourist offices, hotels and automatic ticket machines in railway stations.
The region also offers the Bikemobil card, which gives you unlimited access to South Tyrol’s integrated transport system, as mentioned above, as well as the use of a rented bicycle. Similar to the Mobilcard, you can purchase one for either one, three or seven days.
Thanks to Alto Adige’s Austrian heritage, the cuisine in South Tyrol is distinctly different from the other regions in Italy. White cabbage, potatoes, bread and the flavorful cured and smoked pork—called speck are main are widely used here.