Historic centre of Merano

The most ancient city district and the city centre of Merano are located in the north of the Passirio river.

Everyone who is familiar with the city of Merano might also know the historic district of Merano, as it is the vivid centre of the city. This is where people meet, where they have a chat or a tasty cappuccino when they go shopping.

The heart of the historic district there are represented by the Mediaeval arcades dating back to the 13th century. These arcades have been constructed by the County of Tyrol and are devided into “water arcades” and “mountain arcades”, indicating the two sides of the arcades. The longest arcades of Tyrol start at Piazza del Grano, extending to the municipal S. Nicolò parish church. Lovely bays and numerous archways decorate the alley, which is lined by traditional shops as well as local taverns offering treats for your palate.

The S. Nicolò parish church located at the end of the arcades is an impressive, late Gothic construction dating back to the 14th and 15th century. The 80 m high steeple and the enormous Christophorus fresco at the façade make this church a popular photo subject.

From Piazza Duomo you can proceed towards the ancient city district of Steinach, boasting an insider’s tip for gourmets, which is the Santer Klause. This is where in the 13th century people started building a city. Still today many well-preserved buildings reveal the original character of the city. Also one of the three preserved city gates, the Passiria gate, is located right at this place.

However, let’s make one step back to the parish church. Turning to the former Vicolo della Posta, you will soon come across the second city gate, which is called Bolzano gate. We recommend you to make a pleasant walk along the Merano Cure Promenade, taking past gorgeous historical buildings such as the most prominent of all buildings, the Kurhaus. Enlarged in 1874 by the Viennese architect Friedrich Ohmann, the Kurhaus represents a masterpiece of art nouveau building in the entire alpine area.

Surrounded by exotic plants and flowers you proceed to the place where until 1181 the fourth city gate was located. At Piazza Teatro you can admire the Teatro Puccini, constructed in 1900 within 14 months only. In the late 60s this building was destroyed by a devastating fire. For this reason it was closed and and restored, shining in new splendour today.

From here it is only a stone’s throw to where we started our little tour across Merano, the arcades. So what do you think about a tasty snack with South Tyrolean bacon now?

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