Farm Holidays in Riffian - holiday flats and rooms in South Tyrolto the farms ▼Riffian has a lot in store for its Farm Holiday guests. There are not just orchards and rustic farmsteads to see when out hiking.
The municipality of Riffian occupies a sun-drenched high terrace, 504 metres above sea level. Orchards and vineyards shape the landscape as well as mighty chestnut trees. Riffian and its idyllic mountain hamlets of Gfeis, Maddfeld and Vernuer have stubbornly defended their original traditional character against current trends for innovation.
A Farm Holiday may be had in Riffian as well as one on farm in Vernuer. The little hamlet at around 1,090 metres above sea level lies on the sunny side of the Texelgruppe mountain, too, and has a total of just 30 inhabitants. This means undisturbed peace, quiet and relaxation. Anyone looking for a slightly more lively atmosphere does not have far to go to reach the spa town of Meran with its wide range of cultural options.
Farm Holidays in Riffian feature tradition
Experiencing daily life on a farm up close, tasting local products or vegetables or berries from the farm garden – Riffian's farmers are very resourceful. In autumn, at 'Törggelen' time, the season's new wine may be tasted in rural bars and inns and on the farms, accompanied by roasted chestnuts and other tasty South Tyrolean fare. While farmers in the lower-lying areas mostly make a living from fruit farming today, the ones at higher altitudes often run traditional livestock farms. A special atmosphere surrounds the ten rustic Vernuerhöfe farmsteads, which, despite their altitude, are still farmed today. Anyone stopping here after a walk or spending their holiday on a farm will have a breathtaking view of Riffian. The faithfully restored sawmills at Brunnerhof, which was once used by the farmers communally and was water-powered are also worth a visit
Along 'Waalwege' paths up to old farmsteads
A holiday flat in Riffian can make a base for a variety of hikes in Texelgruppe Nature Park or the Hirzer area.
The Mediterranean climate means that excursions and easy bike tours in the countryside are possible nearly all year round.
A walk to the mountain hamlet of Vernuer and Gfeis comes especially recommended, where six farmsteads are surrounded by wooded steep slopes. The old farmsteads with their brightly-coloured geraniums on their narrow wooden balconies are accessible via a rewarding high path between Gfeis and Vernuer.
The Meran high altitude path leads past Vernuer, too, which, in several legs, encircles the Texelgruppe mountains, the largest Nature Park in South Tyrol. A hike to Hahnenkamm mountain, which affords fantastic all-round views, is an insider tip.
Anyone on holiday with children or wishing to take it easy at the start of the holiday should take a walk along Riffian 'Waalweg' path. This leads through sparse woodland and past the edge of meadows into Kuensertal valley. Just like the other 'Waalwege' in South Tyrol, this path used to allow quick access to small irrigation channels. Problems with the water supply had to be solved rapidly so that the harvest on the steep, dry slopes was not put at risk. The channel, or 'Waal', itself cannot be seen today, as it runs underground, but at some points the water may still be heard softly gurgling.
Riffian as a place of pilgrimage
Staying in a holiday flat in Riffian does not just mean direct contact with rural culture and some great hiking, but the chance to visit to a Marian shrine that has popular since the Middle Ages. Legend has it that a farmer once witnessed a strange light coming from the bed of the Passer river. When he searched for the cause, he saw an apparition of Mary. Because of this apparition, the villagers wanted to build a chapel in the village, but during construction lots of the builders had serious accidents. They then saw swallows carrying blood-soaked wood chips up to a hill. They decided to follow this sign from God and built their church of pilgrimage, the church 'Of the Seven Sorrows of Mary', up on the hill that the swallows had chosen. The church, which was extended and converted several times after its construction in the 12th century, houses a few attractions, including an ornate high altar, a font made of white marble with lots of symbols and interesting frescoes on the lid and the sides. The Raetian excavations near the settlement of Burgstall are also worth a trip.
Why take a holiday in Riffian?
- A quiet spot, popular with pilgrims
- Ideal for a hiking holiday
- Ancient farmsteads