Uttenheim Winter
Uttenheim Winter

Villa Ottone

Villa Ottone is an active village with a touch of culture: The “Master of Villa Ottone” was born here in the 15th century.

Villa Ottone and its neighbouring village of Gais are the largest villages in the municipality of Gais, in addition to three mountain hamlets on the slopes above. Also on the slope, at an impressive altitude of 1,500 m, is the farm group of Anewandt. Villa Ottone (Uttenheim) was once the border between Tures (Tyrol) and Villa Ottone-Neuhaus (Gorizia), so that the nobles of Villa Ottone had a castle built here in the 11th century, which still towers above the village.

This "Schlössl" (small castle), today a ruin on a rocky crest, is one of the numerous castles in the Tures Valley, along with Casanova Castle, Chela Castle and Tures Castle. The parish church of Villa Ottone is no less impressive: It is dedicated to Saint Margaret and was built on the site where a lightning strike caused the old church to burn down. The altar is by the "Master of Villa Ottone": His real name is no longer known, but he created several panel paintings which are also kept in the Monastery of Novacella near Bressanone and in museums in Innsbruck and Vienna.

Villa Ottone stretches along the banks of the Aurino river and offers several activities: In summer, rafting tours on the Aurino are popular, besides that the riverbank is a paradise for bird species and plants, a protected biotope. The Pusterbike Cycle Route of the Valli di Tures and Aurina also leads along here to Campo Tures or - in the other direction - to Brunico and then on to Fortezza or San Candido. In winter, the Plan de Corones, Klausberg and Speikboden Skiing Areas can be reached in a short time, and the village itself offers a toboggan run that is lit up in the evening.

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