This wild romantic gorge is not only a popular excursion destination, but also a protected habitat for bats
Image gallery: Rastenbach Gorge
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Video : Hiking tip: Rastenbach Gorge in Caldaro
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video : Castelvecchio at Caldaro as seen from above
A natural monument and popular hiking destination stretches up the slope between Lake Caldaro and Castelvecchio: the Rastenbach Gorge - “Rastenbachklamm” in German, “Gola Rastenbach” in Italian. This ravine is characterised by small brooks and shady slopes, by ivy-covered trees and water basins. The small Rio Rastenbach brook flows through the area, which has been populated since time immemorial. Even lead ore was mined here between the 15th and 17th century.
Remains and witnesses of those times are the ruins of the St. Peter Basilica along the hiking path. Presumably, it is the oldest church of South Tyrol - the originally three-aisled basilica dates back to the period of time between the 4th and the 6th century AD. Another highlight in the Rastenbach Gorge is the first secured bat cave of the region. It was protected by a fence in 1995, in order to allow the bat species living in this biotope - such as the greater mouse-eared bat and the greater horseshoe bat - to enter and exit the cave, but it denies access to people.
The circular walk through the Rastenbach Gorge starts near the sports grounds of San Antonio in Caldaro and leads you in 2.5 hours through the lushly green and shady landscape. The trail offers beautiful views on Lake Caldaro and its surroundings characterised by vineyards. Small bridges, wooden walkways and steep stairs take you through the ravine, which is especially popular during summer. For kids, however, it represents a real adventure. Take care, danger of slipping!
- Castelvecchio Forest - 39052 - Caldaro / Kaltern
- +39 0471 963169
Recommended as hiking destination from April to October.