Gary and I stayed one night in Trento at a lovely B&B located across the street from the castle. We stopped here during our train trip to Innsbruck, Austria. We were staying in Verona at the time and saw a poster advertising a great price to travel to Innsbruck. Even though we only stayed for an entire day, we packed in a lot of sightseeing. This city is definitely on our list to return to.
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Trento is a city in the northern regions of Italy and is located on the River Adige. It is nestled in the Northern Alps and is the capital of the Trentino-Alto Adige region of Italy. Because of its location, it is a region of numerous cultural encounters. While Trento is located in Italy, this town has a big Austrian influence – especially in food and architecture.
The Gothic and Romanesque cathedral was built in the 11th century and dedicated to Saint Vigilius. When visiting, make sure you visit the crypt under the church to view the remains of an ancient Roman church. This Cathedral has been renovated over the years and has one of the most beautiful rose windows in the front of the church.
Piazza Duomo is located next to the cathedral and is surrounded by beautiful buildings with dark-colored wooden balconies and flowers cascading over the edges (see photos below). Also located here are important Renaissance-era buildings and the large Fountain of Neptune dating back to the 18th century.
This piazza is busy with local life and you can usually find canopies with vendors selling goods and food. It is a perfect place to find a cafe and have an aperitif and enjoy people-watching.
Church of Santa Maria Maggiore
Just northwest of the Duomo and only a few steps away, visit Santa Maria Maggiore which dates back to 1520. It was designed by Antonio Medaglia and you must see the beautiful 16th-century portal which is visible on the church’s façade. Inside is a Baroque altar that is truly magnificent.
This church is an important place of worship in this city and the site of the Third Session of the Council of Trent. While visiting the church, Gary and I came upon a large photo on an easel in front of the church. We stopped to investigate. I noticed that the photo was the exact same alter we were looking at and had men in black robes sitting in semi-circular positions. A woman only speaking Italian tried to indicate that this is a photo of the original painting of the Council of Trent from the 16th century and the original can be found inside the castle. Gary and I thanked her and made a mental note to look for the painting when visiting the castle the next day before we got back on the train to Verona.
Castello del Buonconsiglio
The beautiful castle is now a museum and until 1803, was the seat of Trento’s Prince Bishop. Admission is reasonable and worth the price. You can take a guided tour but Gary and I decided to explore on our own. We took the map and followed the path viewing incredible art, frescoes, and architecture.
In the Torre Aquila (Eagle Tower) you can view precious frescoes that depict life in the city during the medieval era. These frescoes are one of the most noteworthy examples of International Gotic art in Europe. Eagle Tower
Also here, hanging in a hallway just before entering the tower is the original painting of the Council of Trent. This is the photo we saw when we visited Santa Maria Maggiore and the one the woman was telling us about. We stopped and looked at this amazing work of art for quite a while. It was incredible!
Castle Information: Phone: +39 0461 233770
Mercatini di Natale
Northern Italy is known for its Christmas markets. There is a well-known one in Bolzano and this one in Trento. It is usually held from mid-November until the first week in January in Piazza di Fiera. Of course, we were visiting in the middle of September so there were no signs of Christmas.
Things to do Around Trento
Here you will find orchards of apples and numerous vineyards along with 400km of paved bicycle paths. From Trento, you can find places for hiking, skiing, and exploring – visit things to do. Trento is a perfect home base for visiting some other nearby areas (some previous posts):