My little secret in South Tyrol


There are obviously thousands of great places you can stay in South Tyrol, but when adding up all the various elements including the price Gasthof Etschblick is a small secret pearl that we can highly recommend.


Erwin, Hannelore og Hans Peter

We spend two weeks hiking in the Alps every year. One week in August on our way back from Croatia and one week in October when the temperature is pleasant and the autumn colors are hypnotizing. We never book in advance, but check the weather forecast the day before we arrive and then head for where the sun is shining (hiking in the rain is possible, but not our preference). This approach has taken us to numerous places in the Alpine countries (France, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Italy and Slovenia).

In this post I’ll share a little secret if hiking and biking in the Alps is something you enjoy.

Estchblick location

Between Bozen and Meran (in South Tyrol) there is a little village by the name of Mölten (at 1.000m). From Mölten you take a very narrow road (5 km) to the gondola station connecting Mölten with Vilpian in the valley below. Just opposite the gondola station is the small Gasthof Etschblick (17 rooms) offering breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and the valley below. It is by no means a luxury hotel, but the owners and the location makes it one of our preferred places in the Alps.

2015-08-09 09.38.42 HDR

Gasthof Etschblick is run by Hannelore. Her husband Erwin also gives a hand when he is home after work (Erwin is a bricklayer). Their two children Jana (8) and Elia (6) are usually in the picture some of the time (staying at Etschblick really requires that you are fond of children). Hannelore serves a four course homemade meal in the evening and that certainly adds to the quality of your stay. We really enjoy the informal family atmosphere Hannelore and Erwin have created.

We recommend buying a “MobilKarte” for all public transportation in Südtirol (available at the tourist information offices in the region). The MobilKarte gives you unlimited access to busses, trains and even a lot of the gondolas in Südtirol and the price is just €28 for 7 days (1- and 3-day cards are also available). Hiking directly from the hotel is of course an option, but the MobilKarte will give you access to many more amazing hikes without needing a car (which also means that you don’t need to end the hikes where you started).

One morning we took the small gondola (run by Hannelore’s father) across from the Gasthof at 08:25 down to Vilpian, caught the 201 bus to Bozen Bahnhof, walked 10 minutes to the new Bozen-Oberbozen gondola, took the small train from Oberbozen to Klobenstein where we caught the bus arriving at Pemmern in 1.538m at 10:30. We took the gondola to Schwartzseespitze and hiked to Rittner Horn in 2.260m for lunch. On the return trip we took the bus directly from Klobenstein to Bozen Bahnhof and caught the train back to Vilpian where the gondola took us to our hotel. The entire trip (except the gondola to Schwartzseespitze) was on the MobilKarte. It may sound a little complicated, but it is actually very easy and the trips offer breathtaking views of the landscapes en route to our destinations.

Sometimes we get the bus 156 at 09:16 just across from the gasthof and drive to Falzeben (Meran 2000) and hike along the Europäische Fernwanderweg (E4). We stop at Möltener Kaser for lunch and can make it to Scheermoos just in time for the 156 bus taking us back to the hotel.

CIMG0166

Other days we take our bikes down to the valley in the gondola and ride the 36km to Bozen and back along the Etsch river. The bike routes around Bozen are completely separate and you can ride right into the center of the town without having to mix with motorized traffic.

There are obviously thousands of great places you can stay in South Tyrol, but when adding up all the various elements including the price Gasthof Etschblick is a small secret pearl that we can highly recommend.

Hope to see you there!