Sightseeing in Brixen and surroundings
Soley is right in the centre of Brixen and is the perfect starting point for hikes, bike tours, and ski adventures, as well as for cultural experiences and culinary delights. Here’s a selection of the best sights in the area:
Brixen cathedral is the symbol of the city and is also Brixen’s most important church. The bishop’s see of the diocese was located here until 1964. Its origins extend back to 980, while the impressive frontal spires were added in 1174. The high altar, the Late Gothic Virgin Mary, the St Cassian altar, the Rosary altar, and the cloisters with their important frescoes are particular highlights. The cathedral can be visited free of charge.
Neustift abbey was consecrated and opened in 1142 before being destroyed in a fire in 1190. It was then rebuilt within a few years. Today, it consists of the abbey church, St Michael chapel, a bell tower, a Late Gothic choir, a Gothic chapel of grace, the abbey museum, and the abbey’s scriptorium. The abbey is home to the Augustinian Canons. It can be easily reached by car and has a large car park.
The Chestnut Trail
The “Keschtnweg” or Chestnut Trail is a popular hiking and excursion destination in autumn, when the deciduous trees that line it show off their colourful leaves. It’s also the time for traditional “Törggelen”, the South Tyrolean custom of drinking young wine, eating chestnuts and hearty dishes, and savouring sweet “Krapfen” pastries. The trail begins at Neustift abbey and leads past the chestnut orchards, up to Renon/Ritten high plateau, and then back down to Roncolo/Runkelstein castle near Bolzano. It covers a total of 63 kilometres and can be walked in several stages.
Mt Plose, Brixen’s local mountain, is a popular excursion destination for nature lovers and active explorers in both summer and winter. You can hike, bike, ski, and toboggan to your heart’s content here. The valley station of Plose lift is just 10 kilometres away from our Soley suites and comfortably whisks you up to 2,000 metres above sea level. Once you arrive at the top, you’ll enjoy a spectacular panorama over Valle Isarco/Eisacktal and the Dolomites. Let the adventure begin!
Franzensfeste fortress is a place where history comes to life. You’ll discover historical facts while also admiring contemporary art. With an area of 65,000m², the fortress is South Tyrol’s largest historical complex. It was opened under Emperor Ferdinand I as a fortification and dam in 1838, but never really saw battle. It has been open to the public since 2005 and houses a permanent exhibition as well as providing space for ever-changing special exhibitions by local artists.
Sabiona/Säben monastery is one of the oldest pilgrimage sites in Tyrol. It is located on Mt Sabiona/Säben near Klausen and consists of three churches: the Church of the Holy Cross, which was the cathedral of the Diocese of Sabiona for 400 years, the monastery church, and the Church of our Lady inside the complex, which is of significant archaeological and historical value. You can only reach Sabiona/Säben monastery on foot, either on Via Cruxis (30 minutes) or on the promenade (40 minutes). Some of the churches and chapels can be visited free of charge every day.
The Barbian waterfalls
A walk to the Barbian waterfalls is unique and awe-inspiring. It begins by the leaning church tower in Barbian and leads through meadows and forests to the 85-metre-high lower waterfall and onwards to the upper waterfall at around 1,100 metres above sea level. If you’re lucky, as the water thunders 45 metres down into the depths, little rainbows will form in the fine spray. If you don’t want to return via the same route, continue along the trail to Dreikirchen. If you speak German, the name gives you a clue as to what you’ll find here: Dreikirchen is a complex made up of three interconnected churches that make for unique photos. You can then return to Barbian along an easy trail.
The Odle/Geisler peaks
The Odle/Geisler group is mostly located in Puez-Odle/Puez-Geisler Nature Park and is the most striking mountain range near our adults-only hotel in Brixen. Its characteristic peaks reach into the sky like needles. They form a ridge between Val di Funes/Villnösstal and Val Gardena/Gröden. The main summit is 3,025-metre-high Sass Rigais. The Odle/Geisler peaks are a unique natural spectacle and a romantic sight, especially in the reddish-gold evening light. The easily walkable Adolf Munkel trail leads along the foot of the group.