Merano

Merano (German: Meran) is a northern Italian town less than 10 km from the Italy/Austria border. The town it is located within a basin, surrounded by mountains standing up to 3,335 m and is best known for its spa resorts. Merano sits at the entrance to the Passeier Valley, the Vinschgau and the Ulten Valley. In the past the town has been a popular place of residence for several scientists, literates and artists, including Franz Kafka, Ezra Pound and Paul Lazarsfeld, who all appreciated its mild climate. Merano attracts holiday-makers throughout the year and is known for hotels of high standards, comfort, service and good food. There are 52 romantic, old castles in and around the town, some used as hotels or museums while others are still private residences. Merano is a great place for walking enthusiasts, with the famous Tappiener Walk, as well as many other activities, including canoeing, winter sports, horse racing course and the Thermal Spa Centre. Among the town's attractions include the Museum of Tourism, which shows the historical development of tourism in the province, and the Gardens of Trauttmansdorff Castle, a botanical garden. Both sites are located in the Trauttmansdorff Castle. Also impressive are the Steinerner Steg ("stone bridges") across the Passer and the medieval Ortenstein tower, popularly called Pulverturm ("powder tower").

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