The Italian UNESCO-protected Dolomites provide a perfect backdrop for a truly magical Christmas. This holiday is based in a traditional hotel, nestled invitingly in the verdant foothills of spectacular snowy mountains, which are speckled with emerald forests and chocolate-box villages. Although it is Italian by definition, a strong sense of Austria still flavours all aspects of life, for, before the long, bitter battle in the mountains for its border, the area did indeed belong to Austria. Today, the two cultures sit amicably side by side, with the locals speaking both Italian and German; and it is quite usual for diners to be offered pizza and bratwurst on the same menu!
5 nights in hotel (accommodation as specified or similar)
Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service collects you from home, for the journey to London Gatwick Airport for your direct, scheduled British Airways flight to Venice. On arrival, we begin our journey to the foothills of Rodengo’s snowy mountains, arriving later at our base for the next five nights, the family-run Alpenland Hotel Rodeneggerhof (3T). A welcome drink will be waiting for us and dinner is included in our hotel each evening.
Day 2 Christmas Eve - Innsbruck
Today we begin our exploration of this lovely region and visit Innsbruck - which some say is ‘the capital of the Alps’. Our walk takes you past the Opera House and the Imperial Palace into the Altstadt (Old Town) with streets decorated for Christmas. See the Goldenes Dachl, named for the roof which was decorated with 2,738 fire-gilded copper tiles for Emperor Maximilian I, where the town’s Christmas crib and Christmas tree are displayed. The late-medieval town and beautiful mountain backdrop are an ideal setting for our guided walking tour, with time afterwards to meander through the Christmas market and admire a Christmas tree decorated with thousands of Swarovski crystals (subject to opening times) or explore the town independently. We return to the hotel for a festive dinner, after which those who wish may attend midnight mass at the Rodengo Church, just a stroll away.
Day 3 Christmas Day - Rodengo
We begin this special day with a walk into Rodengo for an orientation tour. From a distance, we may view the exterior of Rodengo Castle - an imposing but fairytale fortress that was built around 1140. A festive lunch awaits and later you may wish to enjoy a complimentary tea or coffee with a homemade Christmas biscuit. This afternoon is free to relax or perhaps take a stroll, before enjoying dinner in our hotel, followed by live music and mulled wine.
Day 4 Boxing Day - Vipiteno - Bressanone
Our day takes us on a short scenic drive to Italy’s most northerly city - beautiful Vipiteno. See the 46m-high Torre delle Dodici and wander through Via Città Nuova, the enchanting pedestrian street of lovely wooden houses with colourful and crenelated bow windows decorated for the season. See the Christmas crib exhibition and cosy market offering traditional goods. We also visit Bressanone, the oldest town in the Tyrol. The market is nestled in Cathedral Square, surrounded by centuries old buildings and dominated by the two towers of the Baroque style cathedral. We have dinner at our hotel this evening.
Day 5 Bolzano - Merano
After breakfast, we travel to the charming ancient village of Bolzano, which is markedly Tyrolean in atmosphere and home to Italy’s largest Christmas market. There will be time to browse, to the sound of barrel organs, amongst 80 or more wooden stalls laden with irresistible hand crafted, jewel-coloured wooden toys and delicate, shining glass decorations. Perhaps you will choose to enjoy a glass of mulled, spiced glühwein and a slice of cinnamon stollen bread to keep warm. There will be time at leisure for lunch, or you may wish to visit the town’s museum that houses Ötzi the Iceman, who lived some 5,000 years ago. We move on to Merano, aptly called ‘city of flowers’, an alpine ski resort surrounded by snow peaks, yet set in a lush valley only 1000 feet above sea level. An elegant town, with pastel-coloured buildings, Merano features two promenades - one built under gigantic trees, and the other under a covered Art Deco portico, lined with original paintings, leading to an ancient castle and bridge.
Day 6 Rodengo - Verona - London
Following our last breakfast, we transfer to Verona Airport for our direct, scheduled British Airways flight to London Gatwick Airport. On arrival you will be met and guided to your Titan vehicle, for the journey home.
Enjoy the welcome of the Klöcker family this Christmas, owners of this charming hotel set in an enviable position in the Dolomites and surrounded by spectacular scenery. Markus Klöcker will personally create your meals and you can be assured of impeccable service during your stay.
Restaurant and bar
Wellness treatments available
Rooms with en suite facilities, TV, telephone and balcony
NB: Please note the hotel does not accept credit cards.