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Comune di Bolzano
Stadt Bozen
Panorama of Bolzano
Panorama of Bolzano
Coat of arms of BolzanoBozen
Coat of arms
BolzanoBozen is located in Italy
Location of Bolzano
Bozen in Italy
BolzanoBozen is located in Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol
Bozen (Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol)
BolzanoBozen is located in Europe
Bozen (Europe)
Coordinates: 46°30′N 11°21′E / 46.500°N 11.350°E / 46.500; 11.350Coordinates: 46°30′N 11°21′E / 46.500°N 11.350°E / 46.500; 11.350
Country Italy
Region Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol
Province South Tyrol (BZ)
 • Mayor Renzo Caramaschi (PD)
 • Total 52.3 km2 (20.2 sq mi)
Elevation 262 m (860 ft)
Population (December 2013)
 • Total 105,713
 • Density 2,000/km2 (5,200/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Italian: bolzanini
German: Bozner
Ladin: bulsanins
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 39100
Dialing code 0471
Website Official website

Bolzano (/bɒltˈsɑːn/; Italian pronunciation: [bolˈtsaːno], About this sound listen  or [bolˈdzaːno]; German: Bozen (formerly Botzen), German pronunciation: [ˈboˑtsn̩]; Ladin: Balsan or Bulsan; Latin: Bauzanum) is the capital city of the province of South Tyrol in northern Italy. With a population of 105,713 (2013), Bolzano is also by far the largest city in South Tyrol.

Bolzano is the seat of the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, where lectures and seminars are held in English, German and Italian. The city is also home to the Italian Army's Alpini High Command (COMALP) and some of its combat and support units.[1]

In the 2014 version of the annual ranking of quality of life in Italian cities, Bolzano was ranked as having the Best Quality of Life in Italy.[2]

Along with other Alpine towns in South Tyrol, Bolzano engages in the Alpine Town of the Year Association for the implementation of the Alpine Convention. The Convention aims to promote and achieve sustainable development in the Alpine Arc. Consequently, Bolzano was awarded Alpine Town of the Year 2009.

Bolzano is considered as a bridge between North and South due to the three spoken languages in South Tyrol, Italian, German and Ladin, and the confluence of Italian and German-Austrian culture.


Bolzano and the Alps


The area of the city of Bolzano is 52.3 km2, of which 28 km2 is used as a settlement area. The city is located in a basin, where the Sarntal, Eisacktal and the val Adige with their rivers, Talfer, Eisack and Adige, meet. In the Middle Ages, the two main Alpine crossings, the Via Claudia Augusta over Reschenpass and the Brenner route over Brenner Pass, met in Bolzano. Thus, the city was very important for the trade. The highest point is 1616 m above sea level and the lowest point is 232 m above sea level. The center is located at an altitude of 262 m above sea level. The nearest big cities are 58 km (Trento) and 118 km (Innsbruck) away.

City districts and neighbouring communities[edit]

Aerial view of Bolzano

City districts:

  • Centro-Piani-Rencio (German: Zentrum-Bozner Boden-Rentsch)
  • Don Bosco (German: Don Bosco-Neugries)
  • Europa-Novacella (German: Europa-Neustift)
  • Gries-San Quirino (German: Gries-Quirein)
  • Oltrisarco-Aslago (German: Oberau-Haslach)

In 1911 Zwölfmalgreien and in 1925 the municipality Gries were incorporated in the city of Bolzano. Neighbouring communities are: Eppan, Karneid, Laives, Deutschnofen, Ritten, Jenesien, Terlan and Vadena.


Being located at multiple climate borders, Bolzano features a humid subtropical climate (Cfa) with hot summers and very cold winters. According to the Trewartha classification, this climate could not be really considered a subtropical climate because fewer than 8 months are at least 10 °C (50 °F), and thus would be considered a semi-continental climate with hot summers. Some of its suburbs are designated an oceanic climate (Cfb) based upon cooler summer temperatures, while mountains in the area may feature a continental climate (Dfb). The climate of Bolzano is influenced by its low altitude in a valley south of the main alps. This causes very sheltered conditions from cool winds during daytime, ensuring much warmer temperatures year-round than in similar valley cities north of the range.

Climate data for Bolzano (1971–2000, extremes 1946–present)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 21.8
Average high °C (°F) 6.3
Daily mean °C (°F) 0.9
Average low °C (°F) −4.5
Record low °C (°F) −18.5
Average precipitation mm (inches) 23.5
Average precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm) 3.6 3.1 5.1 6.6 9.3 8.5 8.9 8.2 6.8 6.8 4.9 4.3 76.1
Average relative humidity (%) 72 69 62 66 69 66 66 68 71 75 74 73 69
Mean monthly sunshine hours 102.3 121.5 148.8 159.0 176.7 201.0 232.5 213.9 180.0 151.9 102.0 96.1 1,885.7
Source: Servizio Meteorologico (humidity and sun 1961–1990)[3][4][5]


Largest groups of foreign residents
Nationality Population (2014)
 Albania 2,607
 Morocco 1,713
 Pakistan 1,107
 Romania 1,055
 Moldova 676

Linguistic distribution[edit]

According to the 2011 census, 73.80% of the city's inhabitants spoke Italian, 25.52% German and 0.68% Ladin as their first language.[6]

Language 2001[7] 2011[6]
Italian 73.00% 73.80%
German 26.29% 25.52%
Ladin 0.71% 0.68%

Through fascism and the Italianization policy under Benito Mussolini in the inter-war period, the Italian language group became the majority in Bolzano. Even before the annexation of South Tyrol to Italy (Treaty of Versailles 1919) already a small Italian language group of up to 10% lived in Bolzano. Therefore, even then the city was a meeting place of both cultures.


Bolzano in 1898

Prehistory and Roman settlement[edit]

The modern-day Bolzano was in ancient times a marshy region inhabited by the Raetian Isarci people, traditionally believed to be descendants of Etruscan refugees fleeing Italy from the invading Gauls.[8] The Romans built a settlement after the area had been conquered in 15 BC by General Nero Claudius Drusus. The military settlement, Pons Drusi (Drusus Bridge), was named after this Roman General. During this time the area became part of the region Venetia et Histria (Regio X) of ancient Italy.

In 1948, excavations of the current Cathedral led to the discovery of an ancient Christian basilica from the 4th century. Also discovered was a Roman cemetery, including the tomb of "Secundus Regontius" with Latin inscriptions dating to the 3rd century, making him the oldest known inhabitant of Bolzano.[9]

Bavarian settlement[edit]

During the gradual decline of the Romans' influence in the 7th century, Bavarian immigration took place and the first mention of a Bavarian ruler in Bolzano dates from 679.[10] At that time, the Bavarians named the nearby villages around Bolzano Bauzanum or Bauzana.[11] German populations have been present in the region of Tyrol since this time.

Bishopric of Trent[edit]


In 1027 the area of Bolzano and the rest of the diocese was conferred, by the emperor Conrad II from the Salian dynasty, upon the bishops of Trent. In the late-12th century, the bishop founded a market town, along the Lauben thoroughfare. The town therefore became an important trading post on the Transalpine Augsburg-Venice route over the Brenner Pass, elevation 1,371 metres (4,498 ft) above sea level, within the Holy Roman Empire.[12]

County of Tyrol and Holy Roman Empire[edit]

In 1277 Bolzano was conquered by Meinhard II, the Count of Tyrol, leading to a struggle between the Counts of Tyrol and the bishops of Trent. In 1363, the County of Tyrol fell under the influence of Habsburg Austria and the Holy Roman Empire. In 1381, Duke Leopold granted the citizens of Bolzano the privilege of a town council. This gradually eliminated the influence and power previously held by the bishops of Trent over the next few decades. In 1462, the bishops eventually resigned all their rights of jurisdiction over the town.[13]

Mercantile Building

From the 14th and 15th centuries onwards, a large market fair was organised four times per year to greet tradesmen and merchants en-route the Brenner Pass. The Mercantile Magistrate was therefore founded in 1635 by the Austrian duchess Claudia de' Medici. During every market season, two Italian and two Germanic officers, who were appointed among the local tradesmen, worked in this magistrate office. The establishment of an official trade organisation strengthened Bolzano as a cultural crossroad in the Alps.[14]

Part of Italy[edit]

Bolzano in 1914, at the outbreak of World War I

After the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, Bolzano became briefly part of the Napoleonic Kingdom of Italy and was incorporated into the Dipartimento Alto Adige.[15] After the Congress of Vienna (1814-15) Bolzano returned to the County of Tyrol, within the Austrian Empire and subsequently the Dual Monarchy of Austria-Hungary in 1866. The County covered both modern-day South Tyrol and the federal state of Tyrol (including East Tyrol) in Austria.

In 1915, the Triple Entente powers promised Italy territorial gains if she would enter the First World War on the side of the Entente instead of siding with the German Empire and Austria-Hungary. When Italy abandoned the Triple Alliance (1882), the Entente offered her territorial promises in Tyrol and Istria. This secret arrangement was confirmed in the Treaty of London (1915).

After Italy declared war on Austria-Hungary on May 24, 1915, heavy fighting took place all along Tyrol`s southern border for the entire duration of the conflict. For the next 3 and a half years Tyrol`s southern border became the front line between Austro-Hungarian and Italian troops. Tyrol`s south frontier was - and still is - dotted with tens of defensive fortresses that had been built in view of a possible Italian attack.[citation needed] Losses on both sides amounts to several thousands. During World War I, tens of thousands of civilians living along Tyrol`s southern border were evacuated to either of the two countries, the majority to Bohemian and inner Austrian areas, and some to Italian internment camps, away from the front line. On November 3, 1918 the armistice of Villa Giusti, near Padova ended military operations between Italy. Subsequently, Italian troops entered Tyrol and occupied the Austrian areas south of the Brenner Pass. Italian control of South Tyrol was internationally recognized in 1919. At the time of Bolzano's annexation by the Kingdom of Italy the town was settled primarily by a German-speaking population. As of 1910, 29,000 inhabitants identified themselves as German speakers and only 1,300 as Italian speakers, these latter ones mainly from the Italian speaking areas of Tyrol, namely Welschtirol, currently known as Trentino.[16]

Along with the rest of South Tyrol, Bolzano was subjected to an intensive Italianisation programme enforced by Fascist leader Benito Mussolini from the 1920s onwards to September 8, 1943, when Italy left the military alliance with Nazi-Germany and South Tyrol fell under direct German control. The goal of such programme was to outnumber the local German-speaking population by tripling Bolzano's population through Italian immigration from other regions of Italy.[16] In 1927 Bolzano became the capital of the province of Bolzano. Any reference to and use of the words Tyrol and Tyrolean were banned by law and were punishable offences. In 1933, Adolf Hitler came to power in the Weimar Republic. Mussolini and the Fascists worried that Hitler, in pursuing his ideology of all ethnic Germans under one Reich, would claim South Tyrol from Italy. To avoid such prospect, in 1939 Mussolini and Hitler signed the Option Agreement, by which Germany would renounce territorial claims over South Tyrol as Germany's Lebensraum (living space). Furthermore, ethnic South-Tyroleans who had opted to stay in South Tyrol and refused resettlement to the Third Reich were subjected to full-scale Italianisation, including loss of their German names and national identity, prohibition of schooling in German and use of German for their daily transactions.[17]

Second World War[edit]

During the Second World War, Bolzano was the site of the Nazi's Bolzano Transit Camp, a concentration camp for persecuted Jews and political prisoners. When Italy surrendered in September 1943, the whole of South Tyrol as well as Belluno were de facto administered by the Nazis as Operational Zone of the Alpine Foothills. After 1943, heavy fighting against Nazi Germany and the Axis Powers took place in the Dolomites.[18]

After the War, independence movements gained popularity among the German-Tyrolean population in Bolzano and South Tyrol. In the 1960s a series of terrorist attacks and assassinations were carried out by the South Tyrolean Liberation Committee – a German secessionist movement – against Italian police and electric power structures (one notable incident being the Night of Fire on 12 June 1961), after which the United Nations intervened to enforce the start of bilateral negotiations between Italy and Austria. After 11 years of mediation and negotiation the two countries reached an agreement that would guarantee self-government to the newly created Autonomous Province of South Tyrol.

Economy and Research[edit]


The city thrives on a mix of old and new high-quality intensive agriculture (including wine, fruit, and dairy products), tourism, traditional handicraft (wood, ceramics), and advanced services. Heavy industry (machinery, automotive, and steel) installed during the 1930s has now been mostly dismantled.[citation needed] The local economy is very dependent on the public sector and especially the provincial government.[citation needed]

Bolzano is the biggest city in South Tyrol, which is an autonomous province in Northern Italy with a special statute. This statute preserves the rights of the German-speaking minority in Italy. This unique system was admired by the Dalai Lama, who visited the city on several occasions to study a possible application in Tibet.[19] It has also been presented as role model for the successful and fair resolution of inter-ethnic conflict to other regions of the world.[20]

Exhibition Bolzano[edit]

Exhibition Center

The tradeshows and conferences of the exhibition are concentrated on topics relating to the economies of Alpine countries. There is thus a great focus on tradeshow subjects within the economic competence of South Tyrol and Trentino. The main focuses of dining and leisure time, sports, agriculture, and specific Alpine industries attract an annual total of over 3,000 exhibitors and over 230,000 visitors from all over Europe.[21]

Business Forum Bolzano[edit]

Since 2011, the city hosts the Italo-Germanic Business Forum, which brings together the leaders of the Italian and German economies - Confindustria and the Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie - in the Mercantile Palace to address issues related to the international crisis.


Oberalp Headquarters

Large companies in Bolzano are:


NOI Techpark[edit]

NOI Techpark

NOI Techpark is on a 12-hectare site in the south of Bolzano, on premises formerly home to aluminium works. The “Nature of Innovation” concept contains: innovation imitating nature. This concept that NOI Techpark is based on, where research institutes, companies and start-ups from South Tyrol and all over the globe will work together to prepare the ground for a sustainable development.

Working with representatives from South Tyrol’s business and research communities, BLS and TIS innovation park have developed the park’s “Nature of Innovation” positioning title, the initials of which give the park its name: NOI. The name reflects two meanings in South Tyrol: depending on how you want to pronounce it, NOI can either sound like the Italian word for “we” or the South Tyrolean dialect word for “new”. A special focus lies on those fields:

  • Alpine Technology
  • Renewable Energies and Energy Efficiency
  • Food Technology
  • ICT & Automation

Eurac Research[edit]

The Eurac Research is a private research center headquartered in Bolzano. The research facility was founded in 1992 and initially had 12 employees. Meanwhile, the Center for Applied Research has more than 300 employees. The topics of this institution include, for example, "Liveable Regions", "Diversity as Added Value" and "Healthy Society“. The research has focused more on the Alpine region. Since 2002, the site has been located on Drusus Street, in the former fascist "GIL" building, which was then extensively renovated and integrated with modern buildings.[22] In 2018, the research facility will lead the terraXcube in the NOI Techpark Bolzano. The terraXcube is a research infrastructure that can simulate the most extreme climatic conditions on earth. Air pressure, humidity and solar radiation can be simulated and changed simultaneously in one room. The aim is to investigate how humans react to extreme climatic conditions. Even machines can be tested in this simulator.[23]

Fraunhofer Italia[edit]

Fraunhofer Italia is a subsidiary of Fraunhofer Gesellschaft and is headquartered in Bolzano. The company was founded in 2009 and since then specializes in areas such as "Automation and Mechatronic Engineering" and "Process Engineering in Construction". The Organization for Applied Research seeks to help small and medium-sized enterprises in the region through charitable research. Since 2017, the research facility has been based in the Technology Park in Bolzano South.[24]


City Council[edit]

Bolzano town hall

The last municipal elections were held in the year 2016. Of the 45 seats, 10 different parties were elected to the city council. The council is composed of the following parties:

  • Partito Democratico (PD), 9 Seats (centre-left)
  • Südtiroler Volkspartei (SVP), 8 Seats (catch-all Party for Germans and Ladins)
  • Movimento Cinque Stelle (M5S), 6 Seats (protest movement)
  • Lega Nord (LN), 5 Seats (far-right)
  • Il Centrodestra Uniti per Bolzano, 4 Seats (centre-right)
  • Grüne Verdi – Projekt Bozen, 4 Seats (left)
  • CasaPound Italia, 3 Seats (radical right)
  • Alleanza per Bolzano con Holzmann, 2 Seats (political alliance)
  • Io sto con Bolzano/ Für Bozen Gennaccaro Sindaco, 2 Seats (civil list)
  • Lista Civica/Bürgerliste con/mit Caramaschi, 2 Seats (civil list)

By the submission of the preferential votes the seats do not quite correspond to the ratio of the achieved votes. The city government is composed of Partito Democratico, Südtiroler Volkspartei, Greens (South Tyrol), Io sto con Bolzano and Lista Civica con Caramaschi.[25]


This table shows the mayors of the city of Bolzano after 1945. All mayors within this list belong to the Italian language group. So far, the last mayor of the German language group in Bolzano was Julius Perathoner from 1895 to 1922 and was replaced by the march on Bolzano by the fascists.

Mayors after 1945
Mayor Term start Term end
Lino Ziller 1948 1957
Giorgio Pasquali 1957 1968
Giancarlo Bolognini 1968 1983
Luigi De Guelmi 1983 1985
Marcello Ferrari 1985 1988
Valentino Pasqualin 1989 1989
Marcello Ferrari 1989 1995
Giovanni Salghetti Drioli 1995 2005
Giovanni Benussi 2005 2005
Luigi Spagnolli 2005 2015
Renzo Caramaschi 2016

Euroregion Tyrol-South Tyrol-Trentino[edit]

In 1996, the European Union approved further cultural and economic integration between the Austrian province of Tyrol and the Italian autonomous provinces of South Tyrol and Trentino by recognizing the creation of the Euroregion Tyrol-South Tyrol-Trentino.

Main sights[edit]

Bolzano Cathedral
Castle Maretsch

Its medieval city centre, Gothic and Romanesque churches and bilingual signage give it the flavour of a city at the crossroads of Italian and Austrian cultures. This and its natural and cultural attractions make it a popular tourist destination.

Among the major monuments and sights are:

For more historical and geographical information see South Tyrol.




  • South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology, is the exhibition location of the Ötzi. The museum also exhibits other archaeological finds from the South Tyrolean region. Due to the Ötzi, it is one of the leading archaeological museums in Italy.
  • Runkelstein Castle, was built in 1237 by the brothers Friedrich and Beral von Wangen. The castle became known for its extensive and profane fresco cycle from the Middle Ages.
  • Bolzano City Museum; The collections of the museum include works of art as paintings, sculptures, altars and folklore objects of daily life from all over South Tyrol. The access to the museum is limited and only a part of the valuable collection is visible. The museum, built in 1905, is in the planning stage for an extension that would be fully accessible.
  • Nature Museum South Tyrol, is dedicated to areas such as geology, flora and fauna. The exhibition shows the emergence of South Tyrolean landscapes, for example the Dolomites, and natural science collections from the South Tyrolean region.
  • Museion, is a museum of Modern and Contemporary Art. The museum was founded in 1985 and today, since 2008, has its headquarters on „Talferwiesen“. The modern cube, including bridges, was planned by the architects' office "Krüger, Schubert, Vandreike (KSV)".
  • Mercantile Museum of Bolzano, tells about the economic history of Bolzano and its importance in Central Europe as a bridge between North and South. The museum used to be the seat of the former Mercantile Magistrate. It also documents the trade fairs and their significance for the trading city.
  • Bolzano School Museum, reports about the development of the school in South Tyrol since the introduction of the compulsory education of Empress Maria Theresia in the year 1774. Special features of this museum are, among other things, the presentation of the catacomb schools and the documentation about the Jewish school home near Merano.
  • Bolzano Cathedral Treasury, was founded in 2007 and has its seat near the Cathedral of Bolzano. The museum shows sacred art such as church treasures, 18th-century paintings and goldsmithing.
  • MMM Firmian, is one of six locations of the museum project of mountaineer Reinhold Messner. The MMM Firmian is located at Sigmundskron Castle and is also the headquarters of the project. Themes of this museum are the history of mountaineering and the art of mountaineering. It shows the connection between the people and the mountains. Additionally, Reinhold Messner's experiences, collections and memories of the expeditions will be exhibited.
  • Semi-rural House, was one of many houses built in the Semi-rural zone during the 1930s for industrial workers. It documents the development of this district at that time until the 1980s.
  • Documentation Center BZ 18-45, Victory Monument; The museum is located below the Victory Monument and documents the time of the population of Bolzano and South Tyrol during the Italian fascism and after 1943 the German National Socialism. It is the first museum in Italy to work on the fascism under Benito Mussolini. In 2016, the Museum received a lot of recognition from the jury of the European Museum of the Year Award for exhibiting this sensitive topic.[27]

Libraries and Archives[edit]

Cinema and Theatre[edit]

New theatre Bolzano
  • Bolzano Theatre; The new city theater was opened in 1999 according to the plans of the architect Marco Zanuso. For a long time the city had no city theater, because the old was destroyed in World War II. It is seat of the United Stages Bolzano (VBB) and has 2 halls. The theater features performances in Italian and German.
  • Concert Hall Bolzano, was also opened in 1999 and is the seat of the Haydn Orchestra of Bolzano and Trento. Every two years the famous Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition is held in the auditorium.
  • Haus der Kultur Walther von der Vogelweide (Culture house Walther von der Vogelweide), is a theater that presents a majority of performances in German. It is located in the center of the city and can accommodate about 500 people.
  • Teatro Cristallo, is located outside the center in Dalmatienstreet. Most of the performances are presented in Italian.
  • Stadttheater Gries (City theater Gries), located in the district of Gries-Quirein and can accommodate 371 people. Performances are presented in German and Italian.
  • Theater im Hof (Theatre in the courtyard), is located on Obstplatz and dedicated to the children and youth theater. An additional focus of the small theater is the topic of "women in and at the theater".
  • Carambolage; In this venue improvisational theater and other forms of cabaret are offered. It is located in the center of the city.
  • Batzen Sudwerk; Below the 600-year-old brewery is a cultural workshop in the basement. There are offered often performances in the form of cabaret.
  • Teatro Cinema Rainerum; At the Rainerum Institute in the Don Bosco district there is a theater for about 400 people.
  • Filmclub Bolzano (Movie club Bolzano), is a cinema with 3 rooms and also shows several films of regional directors and actors. The Filmclub is also the venue of the Bolzano Filmfestival. The cinema is located in the old town of Bolzano.
  • Cineplexx, was opened in 2009 and offers a majority of films in German. In addition to films in German and Italian, other films are also available in English. The cinema has 7 rooms.
  • UCI Cinema, opened in 2015 and is located in the shopping center "Twenty". Most of the 6 halls offer films in Italian. Also in this cinema are occasionally showed films in English and German.

Cultural events[edit]

Bolzano organizes the following events every year:

  • Südtirol JazzFestival, is a festival that not only takes place in Bolzano but is also performed all over South Tyrol. The jazz festival lasts up to 10 days and performs 90 concerts in 50 different locations with over 150 jazz musicians. International jazz musicians such as Don Cherry, Randy Brecker, Carla Bley, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny, and Collin Walcott participated in this event.
  • Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition, is an international piano competition and is held every 2 years. This competition was initiated by the director of the Conservatory of Music "Claudio Monteverdi" in memory of the 25th anniversary of the death of Ferruccio Busoni. The artist influenced Italian and German music art and was therefore a symbol of the South Tyrolean culture.
  • Bolzano Filmfestival; The first Bolzano film festival was held in 1987 under the name "Bozner Filmtage". It serves as a platform for the local film scene and to create contact between filmmakers and audiences. Films in Italian and German are shown. Artists like Tobias Moretti, Fred Zinnemann, Herbert Achternbusch, Michele Placido, and Jiri Menzel participated in this event.
  • Bolzano Festival Bozen, is a festival that takes place every summer and offers classical music. The European Union Youth Orchestra, the Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester and the participants of the Ferruccio Busoni Competition are performing regularly.
  • Tanz Bozen - Bolzano Danza, is an international contemporary dance festival and is held every summer. It is a festival that shows different dance performances in different places of the city. It is organized by the Haydn Foundation of Bolzano and Trento.
  • Christmas market Bozen; The Bolzano Christmas Market was founded in 1990 as Italy's first Christmas market. The stands are located in different places of the old town. With over 1.2 million visitors (2005), the Bolzano Christmas Market is the most visited in Italy.
  • Bolzano ShortFilmFestival, also collaborates with the Bolzano Filmfestival and awards prizes for the best short films without words ("No Words"). Indedpently of the Bolzano Filmfestival it also awards prizes for the best Italian short film. The festival was held in 1968 for the first time.


Free University of Bolzano[edit]

Logo of the University

The Free University of Bolzano was founded in 1997 and has its headquarters in the city of Bolzano. It offers trilingual courses in German, Italian and English. The unibz was the first trilingual university in Europe. Other university locations are in Brixen and Bruneck. Through the Euroregion Tyrol-South Tyrol-Trentino, the university also works closely together with the universities of Innsbruck and Trento. The University of Bolzano has the following five faculties:

  • Economics
  • Computer science
  • Design and arts
  • Science and technology
  • Education

State College of Health Professions "Claudiana"[edit]

The State College of Health Professions "Claudiana" was founded in 1993 and has since 2006 its headquarters next to the regional hospital of Bolzano outside the center. The college was named after the Regent of the Austrian County of Tyrol, Claudia de Medici. The college serves to train health professionals, such as nurses, midwives, technical medicine and rehabilitation specialists. Teaching is in Italian and German.

Conservatory "Claudio Monteverdi"[edit]

The conservatory "Claudio Monteverdi" is a college of music in Bolzano. The conservatory was founded in 1927 and has since been named after the former Italian composer Claudio Monteverdi. The rooms of the conservatory are located in the Dominican monastery. The Academy of Music gained international recognition through the biennial Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition.


Bolzano is connected to the motorway network A22-E45[28] to Trento and Verona and to Innsbruck (Austria) and Munich (Germany). In Bolzano South there is a transport hub that connects the dual carriageway MeBo with the A22 motorway. The dual carriageway MeBo (Merano - Bolzano) was completed in 1997 to quickly connect the two metropolitan areas of South Tyrol, Merano and Bolzano, and to relieve the surrounding communities in the district of Burggrafenamt and the old former two-lane State street SS38 (Strada statale 38).

The city is also connected to the Italian railway system. Bolzano railway station, opened in 1859, forms part of the Brenner railway (Verona–Innsbruck), which is part of the main railway route between Italy and Germany. The station is also a junction of two branch lines, to Merano and Mals. The station of Bolzano is served by Frecciargento trains of Trenitalia, Italo EVO of Nuovo Trasporto Viaggiatori (from August 2018) and EuroCity trains of ÖBB.

There is a 50-kilometre (31 mi) network of cycle paths, and about 30 percent of journeys in Bolzano are made by bicycle.[29]

Until summer 2015 there was a regular connection between Bolzano Airport (IATA: BZO) and Rome. In summer charter flights are offered to Cagliari, Olbia, Lamezia Terme and Catania.

Since 1966 a cable car connects the centre of Bolzano with Soprabolzano and the community of Ritten. In 2009 the Italian manufacturer Leitner replaced the old cable car with a new modern 3S system. Although the so-called "Rittner Seilbahn" primarily serves the tourist market, it also provides an important transit link for the residents of Renon.[30] The cable car system, which can carry up to 726 persons per hour, is the first tricable gondola lift in Italy.[31]


The town is host to an annual road running competition – the BOclassic – which features an elite men's 10K and women's 5K races. The event, first held in 1975, takes place on New Year's Eve and is broadcast live on television by Rai Sport Più.[32][33]

Bolzano is also the host city to the Giro delle Dolomiti annual road bike event.

Local teams[edit]

Ice hockey
American football
  • Giants Bolzano The Giants plays in IFL (Italian Football League), the first league of the FIDAF
Softball and baseball
  • Adler
  • Pool 77
  • Softball Club Dolomiti
  • SSV Bozen plays in the FBL (Austrian Fistball League), the first Austrian league.

Notable people[edit]

Rainer Joseph of Austria

Notable people born in or associated with Bolzano include:

International relations[edit]

Twin towns – sister cities[edit]

Bolzano is twinned with:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Le unità di supporto del Comando Truppe Alpine Archived December 25, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. (in Italian)
  2. ^ "Qualità della vita 2014". Il Sole 24 Ore. Retrieved 21 December 2015. 
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External links[edit]

Media related to Bolzano at Wikimedia Commons