Merano/Meran is situated at an altitude of about 330 meters and is known as the pearl of South Tyrol. Protected to the north and to the east by high mountains, this is South Tyrol 's second largest city, graced by a particularly mild climate permitting cypresses, palm-trees and even cacti to grow. Merano, the capital of the Alpine-Mediterranean holiday region surprises the visitor with its rich choice of cultural and leisure activities. Contemporary architecture blends harmoniously with the town's old buildings and modern hotels sit side by side with the beautiful buildings of the Belle Époque. The Merano Thermal Baths and the Gardens of Trauttmansdorff Castle are also worth visiting.
Travelling east from the city, you arrive at Tel/Töll. This marks the geographical border with the Venosta Valley area with its flora and fauna exposed to an unusually abundant quantity of sunshine, due to the specific local microclimate. While the vegetation on north-facing slopes of Monte Tramontana is green and lush, that found on the south-facing Monte Sole Mountain, is by contrast relatively dry and with sparse vegetation, making it the ideal place for outdoor holiday activities in nature.
For anyone wanting to explore the Venosta Valley with Merano and environs in just a single day, we recommend taking the Venosta Valley train from Merano to Malles/Malles and doing the return trip by bike along the Adige cycle trail leading from the Resia Pass to the spa town of Merano; a perfect train and bike travel combination!