Gold, red and ocher landscapes, but also fresh air and wild nature, healthy walks, peace of mind… and distancing: going to South Tyrol in autumn is something beyond simple foliage. It is a way to immerse yourself in the nature charm. Let’s discover together 5 unmissable place in this territory.
Somebody is prepared at the idea of putting down swimsuits and wearing a jacket, others persist in a strenuous resistance to the inevitable. Despite autumn scares many, I have learned to love it and to experience the magic of those warm colors that change day by day… with the cold winter on the way.
We must learn to appreciate Autumn even if, as opposed to the spring (the season of renaissance), it has always been perceived as a gloomy and “end” season.
In recent years, however, many have began to speak of foliage: a term that describe the enchantment of the trees colors change. They abandon the fresh green to turn to yellow, red, ocher, creating an absolutely enchanted color palette.
If it’s true that this period pushed us to live deeply the nature, a walk in South Tyrol in autumn can be a leap into Wonderland.
If everywhere autumn can offer breaths of fresh air and rustling of leaves, in South Tyrol this period suggests to surrender the magic of a place framed by the grandiose peaks of the Dolomites.
All the stages for visiting South Tyrol in autumn *
– The Armentara Lawns
The Armentara lawns enchant in spring with its intense green dotted by an infinite number of flowers, but in autumn the typical “Roda” offers a plunge into a unique place of peace.
The plateau is located in the Fanes-Senes-Braies Natural Park to a heigh between 1600 and 2000 meters, and is absolutely a destination not to be missed for this autumn escape in South Tyrol.
The Roda de Armentara can be reached in several ways, but my favorite (and simplest) way is the La Crusc chairlift in San Leonardo in Badia.
The loop route is 5 km long, nothing particularly challenging (vertical drop of 775 meters), and starts from San Leonardo in Badia, passes through Nagler and Lee Refuges, through the Sanctuary of Santa Croce for the Armentara Meadows and the Ranch da Andrè, goes around Col d’Anvì and return to San Leonardo.
-The “Salto”: the larch plateau
The beauty of the Salto plateau starts before you even arrive. In fact, if you start from Bolzano, the short cable car ride shows glimpses of the city, the mountains and the valley that deserve more than an Instagram post.
The arrival of the cable car is at 1500 meters in San Genesio: the starting point of a plateau that is considered the largest larch meadow in Europe.
In autumn this immense larch forest seems to capture every late summer sun ray, turning it into patches of bright and wild color.
The hiking trails that cross the plateau are numerous and almost all simple and suitable for everyone (even by bike… since I have started to throw myself into the world of two wheels, I have to suggest it to everybody). Among those I recommend there are the “Trail of legends” and the “Trail of the stone men“.
Do not miss a stop in a typical South Tyrolean tavern (a Gasthaus) where you can make a feast of typicals recipes (not very dietetic, but irresistible).
– Vernago artificial lake
Vernago Lake is an artificial lake created in the middle of the last century in Val Senales. Starting from September it is in the middle of the transhumance way and it’s a quiet place where flocks can rest. Here these slows animals have a very luxury treatment: they can walk and eat surrounded by larch and expanses of grass in a sort of warm embrace
A church bell tower suddenly emerges from the water when the lake level drops. Curious and almost scary it is the only reminder of past life in the valley.
It is a particularly pleasant place for hiking lovers: it is possible to experience various routes… including a visit to the place where Otzi, the iceman, was found (even if this is a slightly more challenging exit than others).
– Braies Lake
The Braies Lake is also called the pearl of the Dolomites. It is a splendid natural lake in South Tyrol and is located just under 100 km from Bolzano.
Perhaps this is an obvious advice, but sometimes we have heard so much about a place that we need to see with our own eyes what is true of so many rumours.
In summer or winter, spring or autumn, this stretch of water reflects the seasons day after day, and always offers something to the soul of those who visit it.
You can also start right from here for quite popular hiking routes such as the “Alta Via delle Dolomiti 1“. But If you want to walk without getting stuck, the 4 km around the lake are suitable for everyone.
– Funes Valley
Somebody had presented Funes Valley to me as one of the things to see absolutely in an autumn in South Tyrol, or in any other season. It did not disappoint my expectations.
In the heart of the Dolomites, in the Isarco Valley, “Val di Funes” is a jewel of tranquility that goes perfecly with the idea of slow and green tourism… in short, you don’t have to go here for clubs and entertainment, but for peace and contact with nature.
The Funes Valley is almost “intimate”, an extraordinary place that proudly displays the true mountain soul typical of South Tyrol where mountains are in the background of everyday life and small villages trigger the clicks of every passionate about photography (Tiso, San Pietro and Santa Maddalena ad example).
Do you know some other South Tyrol place to suggest to everybody? Write me in the comment: I’ll add your suggestion at the list… it could be useful for all future South Tyrol guest.