Merano is one of the main centers of South Tyrol, an excellent starting point for reaching the ski slopes, taking guided tours of all kinds, trekking and nature excursions. But Merano also offers tourists a series of cultural and historical attractions such as castles, towers and museums. Here's what to see, where to eat and what to do in the evening in Merano!
- 10 things to see in Merano in a weekend
- What to see in Merano in one day: recommended itinerary
- Where to eat in Merano: the best restaurants
- What to do in the evening: the nightlife areas and the best clubs in Merano
- Plan your stay in Merano: info and useful tips
- User questions and comments
10 things to see in Merano in a weekend
1 - Trauttmansdorff Castle and the Gardens
Trauttmansdorff Castle is a very important historical site for Merano that has existed since the 1846th century when it was known as Neuberg. Only from it was given its current name, when the Count of Styria Joseph von Trauttmansdorff bought it making several changes that saw the entire complex expanded with the addition of large gardens and neo-Gothic elements in the architectural style. The castle became like this the first neo-Gothic example of Tyrol. Currently inside there is also the Touriseum, or the museum of tourism, while since 2001 the surrounding gardens have been opened as a botanical garden divided into natural landscapes and thematic areas to exhibit different plants from all over the world and botanical rarities with particular attention to the local vegetation of South Tyrol.
- by bus with line 4 or 1B departing from Merano station or by car via Via Roma - Get directions
- open from 9:00 to 19:00 with variable closing times until 23:00 in summer and until 17:00 in winter
- full € 14,00 - reduced € 11,00 - children up to 6 years free
2 - Castel San Zeno
Castel San Zeno is an ancient castle with a long history behind it, built on a rock where the Romans had already built a base for the control of trade routes. Later, in the early Middle Ages, a chapel dedicated to San Zeno was added to the existing structure, which soon became a pilgrimage destination.
In the following years the Suppan family continued to erect fortified buildings around the church and then sell them to Mainardo II who made it his residence, which was then handed down to the counts of Tirolo until their fall and the abandonment and destruction of the castle. Only in 1800 the building was repurchased and restored to become today a safe and open attraction.
- by bus with lines 13, 221 and 212 departing from Merano station or by car via Via Schaffer - Get directions
- open every day from 9:30 to 12:30 and from 15:00 to 18:00 except Tuesday which is only open from 15:00 to 18:00
- € 1,50
3 - Terme di Merano
Impossible not to have ever heard of the Terme di Merano, one of the largest spas in Italy and tourist resort much loved by visitors. But what not everyone knows is that the spa owes its fame to Elisabetta di Baviera, better known as Princess Sissi, who together with her still young daughters had stayed at the Trauttmansdorff Castle to carry out thermal treatments, a factor that greatly influenced the notoriety and tourism in Merano and the spa.
A success certainly deserved if you think of all the pools, saunas of all kinds and the wellness area with the various wellness packages for every need that are inside!
- are located a few steps from the historic center and can be reached on foot in just 10 minutes along Corso della Libertà - Get directions
- open every day from 9:00 to 22:00
- prices from € 9,00 to € 27,00 based on age, period, day and time you intend to spend inside
4 - Tappeiner Walk
The Tappeiner Promenade is a pedestrian path of 6 kilometers which runs along Monte Benedetto da Quarazze up to Castel San Zeno. Reaching it is simple thanks to several routes to be made on foot, but in fact it is a bit long so it is preferable to choose to move by car or public transport. What awaits you at your destination is a scenic trail with views of green expanses and snow-capped mountains among the aromas of coniferous and broad-leaved trees among which there are many domestic pines, cedars of the Himalayas, olive trees, eucalyptus, magnolia and bamboo but also foreign plants such as the palms of China, agave, aloe and opuntie.
- it is a bit far from the center, but you can reach it on foot in 25 minutes, by car in just 12 minutes via Via Schaffer or by buses 210, 211 and 212 - Get directions
- always open
5 - Women's Museum
An alternative and very interesting museum in terms of exhibition and culture is the Museum of Women, located in the historic center in the former convent of the Poor Clares, highly recommended by anyone who has been there.
Inside it is divided into the permanent exhibition area and that of the temporary exhibitions it often hosts historical exhibitions to explore socio-political themes.
The permanent exhibition instead has the purpose of enhancing female images and roles in ancient and current society showing clothes, accessories and objects of everyday life.
- reachable on foot in about 7 minutes walk - Get directions
- open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 00pm
- full € 4,50 - reduced € 4,00 - with guide € 6,00
6 - Palais Mamming Museum
The Palais Mamming Museum is the city museum of Merano, inaugurated within the walls of the magnificent and historic Mamming palace. Inside a path leads visitors to discover life in Merano, taking a quick step back into prehistoric times and then continuing with the various historical phases of greatest interest to Merano, up to modern and contemporary art.
The pieces that you can admire are many, but the Egyptian mummy, the collection of Sudanese weapons donated by Slatin Pasha and the typewriter of Peter Mitterhofer have a particular value.
- it is located on the edge of the historic center, reachable on foot in 5 minutes - Get directions
- open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 30pm
- full € 6,00 - reduced € 5,00
7 - Greifvogel Flugschau / Raptor Recovery Center
Not far from Merano, on the surrounding hills, is this one curious structure dedicated to local avifauna and more precisely to birds of prey. The center has existed since 1989 when it was born in the Ahrntal Valley, then moved to its present location in 1998 as the current area offers better climatic conditions for the life of these animals. especially for their recovery if injured or sick.
Inside you can admire the birds from very close and attend demonstrations of care and flight, but before arriving at the aviaries you can enjoy a walk on a nature trail that with the help of specific signs explains everything you encounter along the path.
- it is located outside Merano, but reachable by bus 221 or in 18 minutes by car - Get directions
- open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 30pm
- full € 9,00 - reduced € 7,00
8 - Kunst Meran / Merano Arte
Merano Arte, or Kunst Meran in German, is first and foremost an association that wants to keep the Merano cultural profile high and subsequently a large and elegant art museum.
The exhibition inside is distributed over three floors and embraces figurative art, architecture, literature, music, photography and new media recreating a place of presentation of contemporary art aimed at encouraging debates around it. Temporary exhibitions alternate in the museum to promote local and international artists.
- it is located in the heart of the historic center, reachable in a few minutes on foot - Get directions
- open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 00pm
- full € 6,00 - reduced € 5,00 - children up to 14 years free
9 - Powder Tower
The Powder Tower is one of the main attractions of Merano, especially for the panorama it offers when you get to the top. It is about an ancient structure 28 meters high built on a rock and used as a viewing platform thanks to the modern staircase mounted inside.
From above it is possible to enjoy a wonderful view over the whole of Merano, on the well-preserved remains of the ancient city wall and on the plain of the Val d'Adige surrounded by the peaks of the Tessa mountain range.
- it is located just outside the historic center, about a 10-minute walk, also reachable by buses 1, 3 and 4, which however take twice as long - Get directions
- open every day from 8: 00 to 18: 00
10 - Rametz Castle & Wine Museum
Few cities have the ability to offer a wine museum due to climatic and territorial factors, but Merano has all the credentials to do it, plus in a beautiful location!
The Wine Museum in fact it is located inside the Rametz Castle, historical residence and important testimony of the culture of wine since 1227, where the first Pinot Nero grape of Alto Adige was planted and also all the other typical grape varieties of the area such as Riesling, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Today visiting the castle and its museum is a real cultural experience on viticulture and offers visitors a large cellar made in stone and four exhibition rooms that trace the history of wine over the years starting from ancient tools. If you intend to visit it, remember to book the visit which also includes a tasting!
- is located on the outskirts of Merano, reachable from the station by buses 1 and 225 or by car via Via Schaffer - Get directions
- open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 00pm
- full € 6,00 - children up to 16 years free
What to see in Merano in one day: recommended itinerary
Visiting Merano in one day is possible, both thanks to the proximity of many attractions and to the ease of movement both on foot and by public transport. Unfortunately, one day is not enough to fully enjoy the true atmosphere of Merano and you will certainly have to give up the spa, which require at least a few hours of time, but also at the Tappeiner Walk as it is necessary to take into account both to reach it and to follow it, at the Rametz Castle with its Wine Museum and at the Raptor Recovery Center as they are distant and also challenging. But don't be discouraged, because this leaves room for other castles and museums, all concentrated in the center or almost! Here is the itinerary we suggest you follow:
Morning: starting at a leisurely pace given the opening of the attractions no earlier than 10:00, so enjoy a rich and tasty breakfast at Cafe König and then start at the nearby museum, the Women's Museum. Immediately after it is the turn of the Merano Arte and Palais Maming Museum museums. Finally, go up the Powder Tower and enjoy the splendid view, after which an excellent typical lunch awaits you at Osteria Porta Passiria.
Afternoon: retrieve the car and head to Castel San Zeno trying to be there for the afternoon reopening time so as not to waste too much time since it will be the turn of Trauttmansdorff Castle and its Gardens afterwards. The whole complex is really big and it could take a couple of hours to visit and this will lead to the closure of the attraction, but at the end of the visit relax and have dinner in the Trauttmansdorff Restaurant right next door.
One day itinerary at a glance
- Breakfast at Cafe König - Get directions
- Women's Museum: from Monday to Saturday from 10:00 to 17:00 - ticket cost: full € 4,50 - reduced € 4,00 - with guide € 6,00
- Merano Art: from Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 to 18:00 - ticket cost: full € 6,00 - reduced € 5,00 - children up to 14 years free
- Palais Mamming Museum: from Tuesday to Sunday from 10:30 to 17:00 - ticket price: full € 6,00 reduced € 5,00
- Powder Tower: every day from 8:00 to 18:00 - ticket price: free
- Lunch at Osteria Porta Passiria - Get directions
- Castel San Zeno: every day from 9:30 to 12:30 and from 15:00 to 18:00 except Tuesday which is open only from 15:00 to 18:00 - ticket price: € 1,50
- Trauttmansdorff Castle and the Gardens: every day from 9:00 to 19:00 - ticket price: full € 14,00 reduced € 11,00 children free
- Price at Trauttmansdorff Restaurant - Get directions
Where to eat in Merano: the best restaurants
- Osteria Porta Passiria: typical regional cuisine from Trentino and Alto Adige with a wide selection of dumplings and local desserts
Average price per person: € 20,00
Address and contacts: Passeirer Gasse, 32 (Get directions) / tel: 0473491325
- Trauttmansdorff restaurant: modern cuisine always made with fresh ingredients based on seasonality
Average price per person: € 35,00
Address and contacts: Via S. Valentino, 17 (Get directions) / tel: 0473232818
- Sissi: classic dishes of the Italian tradition and other personal and creative recipes accompanied by over 400 labels of excellent wines
Average price per person: € 30,00
Address and contacts: Via Galileo Galilei, 44 (Get directions) / tel: 0473231062
What to do in the evening: the nightlife areas and the best clubs in Merano
Merano is one of the main centers of South Tyrol, an excellent starting point for the ski slopes or for summer trekking, however it doesn't offer much choice when it comes to entertainment probably because it is a more suitable destination for adults and families than for children who usually stay directly at the foot of the ski resorts as a matter of convenience.
Merano prefers quiet clubs to discos, in fact you can find cocktail bars in the historic center where you can spend a few hours enjoying a good drink. However, if you are looking for a place that also offers music you can find it a little outside Merano, precisely in Marlengo, reachable in 5 minutes.
The best pubs, clubs and discos
- Rossini Cocktailbar: ideal place for aperitifs and quiet evenings with a wide choice of classic and revisited cocktails
Address: Corso della Libertà, 19 (Get directions) / Facebook page
- Cocktailbar Sketch: elegant lounge bar with excellent aperitif and after dinner cocktails accompanied by soft music and snacks
Address: Passeggiata Lungo Passirio, 40 (Get directions) / Facebook page
- Tonzstodl: ideal place for dinner and after dinner, with South Tyrolean culinary proposals, excellent cocktails and live music with DJ sets
Address: Via Prati Nuovi, 14/1 (Get directions) / Facebook page
Plan your stay in Merano: info and useful tips
- the closest airports to Merano are Treviso at almost 3 hours by car (flights to Treviso from € 29,00) and Orio al Serio a little less than 3 hours away (Flights to Bergamo from € 33,00), from which you can travel by bus with Flixbus, rent a car or book a transfer through your hotel. If, on the other hand, you are already closer to Merano, for example to Trento or Bolzano, you can choose between the different trains that connect the whole area with multiple routes every day. From Bolzano you can also opt for the 201 bus. Finally, for those traveling by car, on the Brennero A22 motorway, take the Bolzano Sud exit
- Getting around: the historic center and its immediate surroundings can be easily visited on foot, while for some attractions located on the outskirts you can park your car and rely on the efficient urban service
- Where to park: Merano has several car parks, especially near the historic center. We recommend the Kellerei Parking (Get Directions) covered and guarded even if a little expensive, the huge Parkhaus Plaza (Get Directions) and also this covered and paid, the Lauben Portici (Get Directions) underground and with reasonable prices and finally several places car on paid street in Via Monastero (Get directions)
- Hotel and b & b starting from € 75,00 per room -
- What to see in the surroundings: absolutely to visit the city of Bolzano just 30 minutes by car (Get directions), Castelbello Castle 26 minutes (Get directions), Gruppo del Tessa Natural Park at 55 minutes (Get directions) and, for those who want go a little further, even the Resia Lake, famous for the bell tower in the water, 1 hour and 20 away (Get directions).