A variety of churches and monasteries are an essential part of the long and eventful history of South Tyrol’s main town.
Image gallery: Churches in Bolzano
Various religious places should not be missed during a cultural-historical walk through Bolzano. Let’s start right in the centre, near the famous Walther Square, where the majestic Assumption of Our Lady Cathedral rises: The Gothic building with its 65 m high steeple is considered the landmark of South Tyrol’s main town. In the vicinity there are several other churches and monasteries decorated with valuable pieces of art from the past which are well-worth a visit.
Different Catholic orders, for instance, settled in Bolzano from the 13th century on, not long after their foundation. The Dominican Church close to the Walther Square, the Capuchin Church near the Piazza delle Erbe square and the Franciscan Church in the eponymous alley still tell about those times. All three have an associated monastery with a cloister, partly painted with beautiful frescoes by the so-called Bolzano School. The listed St. John’s in Town Church, however, rises in a north-easterly direction: It is the first sacred building of the oldest suburban settlement zone of Bolzano.
Just a few metres away towards north-west there’s the St. George in Weggenstein Church which tells about the Teutonic Order and shows arms, tombstones and flags of various members of the order. Three further special churches are located outside the town centre. In the wine-growing area of the noble Santa Maddalena wine rises the little St. Mary Magdalene Church which is associated with the legend of the Holy Grail. On the other end of the town, in the quarter of Gries, you can admire the Old Parish Church of Gries with its Romanesque Hepperger Cross and the Muri-Gries Church, the only complete example of late-Baroque architecture in the area of Bolzano.