at Valle Aurina
Of the more than 80 mountains over 3000m in altitude dominating the Valle Aurina-Ahrntal, many belong to the Zillertal Alps rising to the north, west and south-west, though some lie within the beautiful Rieserferner-Ahrn Nature Park. In this area there is water wherever you look. Thundering mountain streams, crystal-clear lakes and spectacular waterfalls draw hikers, mountaineers and mountain bikers. In winter the frozen waterfalls and lakes can be explored on snowshoes or touring skis. Two ski resorts, Speikboden and Klausberg, are also easily accessible from this quiet corner of South Tyrol.
The traditional local food served in the region's huts is a reflection of the landscape itself: fresh, honest and hearty. Delicacies from the region such as Schlutzkrapfen and Käseknödel are made using produce sourced from the valley, much of which is still made and sold on site at the farm. Cheeses made using milk from sheep, cows or goats are often manufactured in small local daries.
It is little wonder that the people of this remote region appreciate good, hearty food. After all, for many centuries the main source of income in the area was mining. Visitors today can visit the mines in Prettau where men would search underground for copper. The mine closed once the copper reserves had been exhausted, forcing the population to find other ways of earning a living. Many women turned to lace-making.