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© Stefano Scata

© Stefano Scata © Stefano Scata

and dedicated to the discipline of mountaineering. The largest museum, MMM Firmian, meanwhile, close to the town of Bolzano, has been carved out of a 10th century castle. Packed with mountaineering equipment, photography, art and an eclectic collection of Eastern artefacts picked up during his years conquering the Himalayas, it’s an eccentric experience. It is also not for the fainthearted, with it featuring a number of hair-raising elevated paths, steep stairs and vertigo-inducing towers seemingly to test visitors’ stamina. For lesser, but no less satisfying, thrills, South Tyrol is also renowned for its culinary prowess. Boasting the highest concentration of Michelin-starred restaurants in Italy (23 across 19 restaurants), you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to fine dining. Sissi, an Art Nouveau-styled restaurant in Merano, headed up by chef Andrea Fenoglio, is a good start for innovative dishes and is a 20 minute drive from the hotel (sissi. andreafenoglio.com). From winery tours to mountain-hut trails, fairytale-like castles to picturesque bike paths, South Tyrol is packed with things to do, for those who want both an active, and relaxing, time away. Chalets at San Luis start from €250 per night for full board (excluding drinks) per person. San Luis, +39 0473 279570; sanluis-hotel.com; for more information on South Tyrol, visit suedtirol.info; for more information on the Messner Mountain Museums, visit messner-mountain-museum.it

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