Trento Italy Recommendations

This is by no means a comprehensive guide to everything there is to do in Trento. These are just the things I have done or plan to do on my next trip. For your convenience I’ll put a hyperlink glossary here so you can click and skip the intro and go to the section of interest.

  1. Getting to Trento
  2. Transportation in Trento
  3. Where to Stay in Trento
  4. What to Do in Trento
  5. Eats and Drinks

Introduction

Trento, nestled between the allure of Lake Garda and the towering peaks of the Dolomites, is the capital of the northern Italian region of Trento-Alto Adige (or Trentino Südtirol), which borders Austria. It’s a charming town both old and modern, and offers a great combination of Italian and Austrian culture, making it a unique addition to your Italy itinerary.

view of the church of Sant'Apollinare
Chiesa di Sant’Apollinare

Getting to Trento

Trento is located on the train line between Bolzano and Verona, very close to the famous Dolomites. For arrival by train, you will navigate to Trento Station

My suggestion for buying train tickets in Italy is to skip the line at the machine and buy the tickets on Trainline. Please check out my post, Essential Resources for Italy Travel.

Transportation in Trento

Trento is fairly small, so you can get around most of it on foot. For longer trips, you can use a bus (local company Trento Trasporti – ticket info here).

Where to Stay In Trento

On my trip to Trento, I stayed at Hotel Buonconsiglio. It was basic and simple, had a friendly staff, and was about an 8 minute walk from the center and 5 minutes from the train station. Breakfast was available for an additional fee. 

For booking accommodations in Trento, I suggest Booking.com because it has everything from hotels to private rooms, and everything in between.

Some hotel options to consider:

Here are some hotels I would stay in based on location, reviews, and amenities.

Things to Do

Trento is a great city to just walk around – one of my favorite travel activities. Here’s some other things you should do while in Trento.

Visit Buonconsiglio Castle and Aquila Tower

Beautiful inside and out and with great panoramic views, the castle is one of the highlights of Trento. It showcases a mix of Romanesque and Gothic architecture along with Renaissance frescoes (Google Maps location).

external picture of Castle Buonconsiglio in Trento Italy
Castle Buonconsiglio entrance stairway

The castle garden is free, but to see the inside of the castle you’ll need to buy a ticket (10 €), with an additional fee (2.50 €) to see the inside of the Tower. Official website here.

top: View of Trento from Castle Buonconsiglio. Bottom: castle garden
View of Trento from Castle Buonconsiglio (top) and castle garden

Cable Car up to Sardagna

You can take the cable car (funivia) up to Sardagna for a great panoramic view of Trento and the surrounding mountains. It’s worth it for the view, but there’s not much else to see in Sardagna. The trip costs 5€ round trip. If you’re staying in a hotel, it may include a guest card which gives you free access to public transport, including the cable car. The cable car starts here (Google Maps link).

View of Trento from Sardagna after cable car
View of Trento from Sardagna

Visit to Parco Naturale del Doss Trento

For a small nature escape, walk up to the Parco Naturale del Doss Trento (Google Maps location). If you’re walking, be prepared for a 15 minute climb. 

Trees and pathway in Parco Naturale Trento
Parco Naturale is a peaceful nature escape with great views of the city.

The Cesare Battisti Mausoleum (shown below) honors the Italian patriot Cesare Battisti. Be sure to also check out the remains of the Basilica Paleocristiana.

Canons and Mausoleum of Cesare Battisti
Mausoleum of Cesare Battisti

Visit Trento’s Monumental Cemetery

Trento’s Monumental Cemetery is serene, picturesque, and has a beautiful backdrop. It’s worth taking 30 minutes to walk from the center and take a short stroll around. 

trento cimitero with mountain in the background
Trento Cemetery

Visit the Christmas Markets!

If you’re in Trento between mid-November and the first week of January, you definitely won’t miss the Christmas markets! These were the highlights of my visit. They’re filled with vendors selling gifts, local treats, drinks (Vin brulé!), and typical Trentino dishes. I also loved it because of the shared high-top tables, making it easy to chat with bundled-up locals, which is a rare thing to happen in Italy.

Visit the Trento Cathedral (Duomo di San Vigilio)

Combining Romanesque and Gothic elements, the Cathedral of Saint Vigilius is right in the center and worth a visit during the day, and a walk-by at night.

Trento Cathedral
Trento Cathedral

Visit Piazza di Piedicastello

This small piazza has just a few shops and restaurants, but it’s very quant and picturesque and offers an architectural change from the rest of the city.

Piazza di Piedicastello.
Piazza di Piedicastello

Eats and Drinks

The food in Trento is pretty much unlike any “Italian” food we’re used to back in the States. This is largely due to its location, in northern Italy near Austria. 

Some notable dishes from Trento (or at least from its region of Trentino-Alto Adige) are:

  • Canederli (Knödel): Bread dumplings mixed with ingredients like speck, cheese, and spinach, served in broth or with melted butter.

  • Strangolapreti Trentini: Spinach and bread dumplings seasoned with Parmesan and nutmeg, often served with melted butter and sage.

  • Torta di Fregoloti: A crumbly almond cake made from almonds, flour, butter, and sugar.

  • Carne Salada e Fagioli: Thinly sliced, cured beef served with beans and a dressing of olive oil and vinegar.

  • Polenta: A versatile dish that can be creamy, fried, or grilled, often served with cheese and mushrooms.

  • Trentino Gulash: A regional variation of the classic stew, made with beef, onions, paprika, and spices, reflecting the area’s Austro-Hungarian influences.

Restaurants 

Forsterbräu Trento is a great spot for typical Trentino food. My usual method of asking locals where to find the most typical Trentino food resulted in at least 5 separate people telling me to go here. It’s big, very busy, requires a reservation, and as such not typically the kind of place I would like – but I was more than satisfied. 

picture of beer flight, Beef goulash,
canderli at Forsterbrau

Beef goulash, canederli, and a beer flight at Forsterbräu. We’re not in Naples anymore.

If Forsterbräu doesn’t appeal to you (or you can’t get a reservation), some other options for typical Trentino food are Patelli Restaurant, Ristorante Ca dei Gobj, andIl Cappello.

IBRIS Pizzeria and Drink made news a few years ago for being a successful African-owned pizzeria in a largely traditional (i.e. prejudice) culture. I stumbled across it sort of by accident, and recognized some of the news headlines posted on the wall. Most importantly, the pizza-by-the-slice did not disappoint.

Picture of two slices of pizza from IBRIS
Two great slices from IBRIS

If you are in Trento during the Christmas season, the previously-mentioned Christmas Markets are the best places to get local food.

Trento Christmarket stand (top), potato, meat and cheese entree (bottom left), cup of vin Brule (bottom right)
If you’re in Trento around Christmas time, including early January, enjoy the markets!

Bars & Aperitivo

Bar Pasi is a really great bar for aperitivo and cocktails, but also morning coffee. 

L’Angolo dei 33 is a great spot where locals hang late at night for beer and live music. Small snacks available too. 

Accademia del Gin di Linda is a cool, hip (does that word make me sound old?) cocktail bar, where the owner Linda has what seems like every gin on the planet in stock, plus some of her home made versions. It’s a really cool spot, ideal for couples or small groups.

Gin Bar in Trentino (Accademia del Gin di Linda) showing all the gins available
Accademia del Gin di Linda

Want to take some local food with you, or get some gifts to take home? Check out Lunelli Specialità Alimentari (Google Maps location).

food on display at small grocer Lunelli Alimentari
Pre-made canederli and other local goodies at Lunelli Specialità Alimentari

That’s All For Now

I sincerely hope you found value in this article.  If you have recommendations of your own or have suggestions on what else you would like to see covered here, please write in the comments below. Additionally, if you’re planning a trip to Italy and need one-on-one support or guidance, check out my services page where you can get in touch with me.

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