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A walk­ing tour of the Mess­ner Moun­tain Mu­seum cir­cuit

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Travel & Indulgence -

The Mess­ner Moun­tain Mu­seum is a net­work of six mu­se­ums across the South Ty­rol and Bel­luno re­gions of north­east Italy. Tick­ets can be bought sep­a­rately or com­bined; the MMM Tour/Ticket cov­ers en­try to all six mu­se­ums and costs €35 ($55.30). A road trip tak­ing in all six mu­se­ums can be done in three to four days, but a longer jour­ney, pair­ing some hik­ing trails with the mu­se­ums, is a great way to ex­plore the re­gion. More: mess­ner-moun­tain-mu­seum.it/en.

MMM Fir­mian

The cen­tre­piece mu­seum (right) just south of Bolzano (Bozen) seeks to ex­plore the re­la­tion­ship be­tween men and moun­tains. Dis­plays cover moun­tains in art and re­li­gion.

Open: Late March to early Novem­ber, 10am-6pm. Closed Thurs­days.

The trek: A 15-minute drive from the mu­seum, the Three Cas­tles loop be­gins and ends at Castle Korb, pass­ing two me­dieval cas­tles with views over the Etsch Val­ley, tak­ing about two hours in to­tal.

Dif­fi­culty: Easy-mod­er­ate. More: ep­pan.com/en.

MMM Ju­val

A mu­seum of moun­tain art, and Mess­ner’s sum­mer home. Guided tours only.

Open: Late March to late June, and Septem­ber to early Novem­ber, 10am-4pm. Closed Wed­nes­days.

The trek: The 2½-hour Val Se­nales Waal­weg trail fol­lows ir­ri­ga­tion chan­nels that date back 1000 years, leav­ing from, and back to, Ju­val Castle.

Dif­fi­culty: Easy-mod­er­ate. More: suedtirol­er­land.it/en.

MMM Ripa

A mu­seum (far right) of­fer­ing in­sights into the lives of moun­tain peo­ple across the world.

Open: Mid-May to early Novem­ber and late De­cem­ber to late April, 10am or noon to 6pm, depend­ing on the month. Closed Tues­days.

The trek: Start­ing in Bru­neck, this 2½-hour loop trail heads up to the vil­lage of Reis­chach.

Dif­fi­culty: Easy. More: bru­neck.com.

MMM Or­tles

At 1900m, this un­der­ground mu­seum ex­plores the hor­rors of ice, avalanche and dark­ness.

Open: Late May to mid-Oc­to­ber and early De­cem­ber to early May; from 1pm or 2pm to 6pm or 7pm, depend­ing on the month.

The trek: A de­mand­ing two-day trek up South Ty­rol’s high­est peak, Or­tles (3905m), with a ver­ti­cal climb of 2210m. There is a rocky wall, ver­ti­cal in parts, but equipped with fixed chains and climb­ing aids. A night is usu­ally spent at Rifu­gio Payer.

Dif­fi­culty: Very tough. More: sen­tres.com.

MMM Dolomites

Up on Monte Rite (2181m), in the heart of the Dolomites, this mu­seum is ded­i­cated to rock, in­clud­ing new routes and first as­cents, with dra­matic views.

Open: June to Septem­ber, 10am-1pm and 2pm-5pm or 6pm, depend­ing on the month.

The trek: Start­ing at Passo Cib­iana, this 6.5km, twohour trek cov­ers the up­per mas­sif of Monte Rite. A lightly ex­posed sec­tion of the trail is equipped with a wire ca­ble. Use the trail up to Monte Rite and take the shut­tle bus down.

Dif­fi­culty: Tough. More: rifu­giomon­terite.it.

MMM Corones

Up on Mt Kron­platz (2275m), Mess­ner’s new­est mu­seum ex­plores the history of Alpin­ism.

Open: Early June to mid-Oc­to­ber and early De­cem­ber to mid-April; 10am-4pm.

The trek: The Heiligkreuzkofel. A short drive from the mu­seum, take the chair­lift from St Leon­hard to Heilig Kreuz, which leads to Kreuzkofel. The trail con­tin­ues across the moun­tain’s western slope up to the Kreuzkofelscharte (2612m); rocky pas­sages are se­cured with ropes.

Dif­fi­culty: Very tough. More: sen­tres.com. • suedtirol.info/en

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