Inhaling the purest nature. Wonderfully positive energy flowing into every cell of your body. And suddenly you find yourself alone, hand in hand with Mother Earth.
Do you have an idea about what I'm referring to? Quite possibly nature's best recharging device ever. People can recharge their batteries and lift their spirits at spots where energy flows from the earth right into the soul. At South Tyrol's magical places – amidst views and insights, mysticism and history.
Castelfeder – views across the holiday region of Bolzano and environs
The mystical place of Castelfeder rises up on a hill to the south of Bolzano, between Ora and Montagna. It features a ruin sitting enthroned at its highest point, where all the calm and mysticism of the place are concentrated. Meadows, paths, rocks and, amongst them, a fertility slide, along with views revealing the holiday region in all its splendour. The Etsch river, majestically winding its way through the valley, orchards and vineyards, villages and woodland – Castelfeder affords all-encompassing views. And invites meditation.
The ancient larches of Ulten – pillars of the Merano and environs community for centuries
Ultental valley is one of the most rustic valleys in South Tyrol. So it's no wonder that the three oldest conifers in Europe have put down roots here. When one of the ancient larches was overpowered by a storm in 1930, it was found to have 2,000 growth rings. Struck by lightning and battered by the elements, the three remaining ancient larches still stand – known as 'bat larches' by the locals because they offer shelter to bats, martens and owls in their rotten hollows – now stretching 36.5 metres towards the sky. The stoutest of them has a circumference of over 8 metres. A stage set to showcase nature's power – a really sacred place.
Tartscher Bichl – not just a hill in Venosta Valley
Hunchbacked Tartscher Bühel hill near Malles rises 1,077 metres skywards in upper Venosta Valley. An old sacred place with a story to tell its visitors: the saga of the 'Town on Tartscher Bichl' amidst the steppe-like vegetation turned out to be a true story when the remains of a Raetian town comprising around 80 houses were excavated. The chapel of St. Veit has stood there since the 11th century and Mussolini built a bunker into the hill, although its entrances are hardly traceable today. It's no wonder that this mystical spot is the setting for the traditional event of 'Scheibenschlagen', or disc flinging. Tartscher Bichl – a landmark of Venosta Valley and unparalleled magical place.
Pragser Wildsee lake – a waterworld in the Dolomites of Prags
It is the jewel of the South Tyrol mountain lakes. Anyone who has ever stood on the banks of Pragser Wildsee lake will know why it is considered one of the magical places of South Tyrol. Emerald hues against a backdrop of conifer green and the grey of the Dolomite rock. Calm reigns in the air – and in the water, where, as legend has it, the gateway to the underground kingdom of Fanes lies. It's not without reason that Pragser Wildsee lake provides the backdrop for lots of films – and mainly special moments. For walking around, swimming and dipping toes in. And feeling the forces of nature, which are truly special. Pragser Wildsee lake is the pearl of the Dolomites and fills people with vital energy and inspiration.
Gilfenklamm gorge – marble quarry and waterfall in Isarco Valley
The power of water suddenly becomes visible at Ratschings in upper Isarco Valley. This is where the Ratschingser Bach stream has bored a gorge through sparkling white marble. The only marble gorge in the world and one of the most easily accessible gorges in the Alps will have visitors amazed and will show them the way to inner strength. There are slip-resistant paths through it and over it at spots where the water tumbles down in a series of waterfalls. Gilfenklamm gorge has been accessible since 1961 and has shown how the untamed power of nature can flood people's cells with new energy ever since...