Bressanone/Brixen: History, Dining, Hiking in the Dolomites

The history of the mountain town of Bressanone/Brixen is inextricably tied to the rich and powerful bishops, who loved wine and who, for centuries, ruled great swaths of territory in Tyrol and the Dolomites.

Their wealth is evident in the grand architectural style of the Cathedral,

The public square in front of the Cathedral,

The Bishop’s Palace and its gardens,

Laid out with careful formality with a mountain backdrop.

Next to the Cathedral is the Bishops’ cloister,

Whose ceiling is decorated with astoundingly beautiful frescos.

One of the oldest buildings in town is now a restaurant, Oste Scuro (The Dark Host), where I had a lovely lunch last year.

It has a traditionally elegant atmosphere,

And serves seasonal food along with local wines such as Peter Pliger’s Kuenhof. (Read more)

Even though the town is charming, the biggest attraction in the area are the mountains. There are miles and miles of trails for hiking and for skiing. I drove a few miles out of town to the Plose ski lift that goes up to a plateau for hiking either to Rossalm or the summit at Plose. For more information on hiking and skiing: Plose.

Cows roam freely…

With spectacular views in the distance.

My day of exploring Bressanone/Brixen was distinctly different from time spent in Merano/Meran and Bolzano/Bolzan. It is fascinating that he landscape, the altitude and the wines change significantly from one place to another in the Alto Adige/Südtirol. I have a lot more exploring to do.

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