Franzensfeste Fortress, the main attraction in the narrow valley passage between Fortezza/Franzensfeste and Varna/Vahrn. Planned and built between 1833 and1838, it was one of the most secure fortresses in the Alps at its time – yet was never put to the test. The 65,000-square meter fortress has a gigantic maze comprising rooms, corridors and stairs on a 20-hectare site, built out of millions of bricks and granite blocks against an enemy that never came.
A few years ago the old fortress was rebuilt and architecturally upgraded. The award-winning renovation now serves as a venue for concerts as well as various architectural and art exhibitions, such as Manifesta 7 and 50x50x50 South Tyrol. The Franzensfeste permanent exhibition presents the fascinating history of the structure and its surroundings, including the legendary gold treasure of the Italian National Bank, which was hidden here during the Second World War.
The exhibitions and large parts of the castle may be explored on your own. An intriguing tour also reveals the hidden secrets of this mysterious complex.
TIP: The Fortress Fortezza is located directly near the bicylcle route Brennero-Bolzano
and the Long-Distance Cycling Route from Munich to Venice
Download information about the Franzensfeste Fortress as PDF