Trauttmansdorff Castle and Gardens

Meran, Italy

The origins of Trauttmansdorff Castle go all the way back to the Middle Ages. The structure was first documented in 1300 as Neuberg Castle. The medieval walls are still visible on the southwest side, and the crypt dates from that period. The fresco room has also been preserved from the Renaissance period.

In the mid-19th century, Count Joseph von Trauttmansdorff bought the dilapidated building and renovated it using neo-Gothic elements. Trauttmansdorff Castle is thus Tyrol’s earliest example of a neo-Gothic castle. The next owner, Baron Friedrich von Deuster raised the east wing of the castle one level by adding the grand Rococo Hall in 1899, significantly altering the shape of the castle. The castle, which had been neglected after the world wars, was renovated again between 2000 and 2003: the siding, chapel, crypt, Rococo Hall, and Empress Elisabeth’s second floor living quarters have all been restored to their former splendor.

The gardens were initially laid out circa 1850 by Count Trauttmansdorff during the castle's restoration. Empress Elisabeth of Austria was a frequent visitor to Meran and the gardens. A bronze bust in her memory was placed in the gardens after her assassination in Geneva in 1898.

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Details

Founded: 1899
Category: Castles and fortifications in Italy

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Peter Bacher (2 years ago)
Whether a dietry ambition or indeed a full out culinary food romp with knobs on! Trauttmansdorff will serve it right with utter and doubtless delight! Get it down you and try it!
Sunil Shah (3 years ago)
A very well designed garden. Though it is a botanical garden, it is scenic too. It has a large variety of trees and plants. Details about them are mentioned at places. It involves lot of walking and climbing. Views from top are very good. You can have many photos with picturesque background for your sweet memories. I loved the place.
Anja Stenning (3 years ago)
Pretty gardens with nice landscape design. The views from the higher levels into the valley are amazing. The glasshouse with the insects is very interesting, too. Not many blossoms in September, but overall a nice experience and will easily keep you busy for four hours or so.
Marvin Steinm (3 years ago)
We had a wonderful day here. The park is big enough to spend all day long exploring it's gardens. Thanks to signs it is pretty clear which plants are to touch, smell or just to watch and there are a lot of them- from cactus to usual garden plants. The walkways are cleaned well and there are also attractions to have fun on your walk by or challenge your knowledge. All in all a great visit for both young and old
Kana Ristic (3 years ago)
Didn't know what to expect from a tourism museum but was certainly not disappointed! Very very entertaining and insightful. I would think anyone would enjoy it with plenty of art and interactive features. The gardens were also spectacular.
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Quimper Cathedral

From 1239, Raynaud, the Bishop of Quimper, decided on the building of a new chancel destined to replace that of the Romanesque era. He therefore started, in the far west, the construction of a great Gothic cathedral which would inspire cathedral reconstructions in the Ile de France and would in turn become a place of experimentation from where would later appear ideas adopted by the whole of lower Brittany. The date of 1239 marks the Bishop’s decision and does not imply an immediate start to construction. Observation of the pillar profiles, their bases, the canopies, the fitting of the ribbed vaults of the ambulatory or the alignment of the bays leads us to believe, however, that the construction was spread out over time.

The four circular pillars mark the start of the building site, but the four following adopt a lozenge-shaped layout which could indicate a change of project manager. The clumsiness of the vaulted archways of the north ambulatory, the start of the ribbed vaults at the height of the south ambulatory or the choice of the vaults descending in spoke-form from the semi-circle which allows the connection of the axis chapel to the choir – despite the manifest problems of alignment – conveys the hesitancy and diverse influences in the first phase of works which spread out until the start of the 14th century.

At the same time as this facade was built (to which were added the north and south gates) the building of the nave started in the east and would finish by 1460. The nave is made up of six bays with one at the level of the facade towers and flanked by double aisles – one wide and one narrow (split into side chapels) – in an extension of the choir arrangements.

The choir presents four right-hand bays with ambulatory and side chapels. It is extended towards the east of 3-sided chevet which opens onto a semi-circle composed of five chapels and an apsidal chapel of two bays and a flat chevet consecrated to Our Lady.

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The west porch finds its natural place between the two towers. The entire aesthetic of these three gates springs from the Flamboyant era: trefoil, curly kale, finials, large gables which cut into the mouldings and balustrades. Pinnacles and recesses embellish the buttresses whilst an entire bestiary appears: monsters, dogs, mysterious figures, gargoyles, and with them a whole imaginary world promoting a religious and political programme. Even though most of the saints statues have disappeared an armorial survives which makes the doors of the cathedral one of the most beautiful heraldic pages imaginable: ducal ermine, the Montfort lion, Duchess Jeanne of France’s coat of arms side by side with the arms of the Cornouaille barons with their helmets and crests. One can imagine the impact of this sculpted decor with the colour and gilding which originally completed it.

At the start of the 16th century the construction of the spires was being prepared when building was interrupted, undoubtedly for financial reasons. Small conical roofs were therefore placed on top of the towers. The following centuries were essentially devoted to putting furnishings in place (funeral monuments, altars, statues, organs, pulpit). Note the fire which destroyed the spire of the transept cross in 1620 as well as the ransacking of the cathedral in 1793 when nearly all the furnishings disappeared in a « bonfire of the saints ».

The 19th century would therefore inherit an almost finished but mutilated building and would devote itself to its renovation according to the tastes and theories of the day.