A leisurely drive past vineyards, orchards and palm trees will take you to the shopping cities of Bozen and Meran, or along the Wine Route to Lake Kaltern; Lake Garda is just one-and-a-half hours away. There are numerous attractive destinations to choose from, easy to find with the roadbook, a special experience – and not just in a convertible. Host Matthias Laimer has some great tips for you.
The passes are the real highlight. For a tranquil yet scenic tour, head for the Gampen Pass. The Ortler massif dominates the breathtaking landscape on the way up to the Stilfsersjoch (Stelvio) Pass. The numerous hairpin bends with their views of the Eternal Ice are an unmissable experience, especially in a convertible.
The road up to the Timmelsjoch Pass extravagantly shows off its amusingly bold architectural sculptures from the village of Moos up to Obergurgl. Free and accessible to all, the five art stations – Telescope, Garnets, Walkway, Smugglers and the Pass Museum – line the road, the work of South Tyrolean architect Werner Tscholl. The Pass Museum is just across the Austrian border and can easily be reached on foot from the pass.
The Dolomites passes are a special experience. In leisurely style, the road leads through shaded valleys and past pretty villages surrounded by pastures, then up past bizarre formations of steep rock towers, mighty mountain ridges sprinkled with meadows and boulder fields. Delightful hamlets offer places to stop and wonder: the Dolomites are a UNESCO World Heritage Site and their pale limestone glows a fiery red at sunset.
The Vinschgau valleys with their magnificent peaks. The side valleys of the main Vinschgau Valley are silent, climbing up steeply through narrow cliffs, then opening out onto lovely mountain landscapes with pretty villages and unique ancient farmhouses. Reservoirs fill the valley floor, reflecting forests and glaciers – a one-off beauty.
The arcades of Meran are not the only places offering fine shopping experiences: the centres of Naturns, Latsch and Schlanders too have fine shops offering alternatives to the everyday. All of these places are home to art treasures from the Romanesque and Gothic eras, with the Vinschgau Valley a stronghold of the Romanesque. Discovering these buildings will lead you to enchanting spots and wonderful encounters with both landscape and people.