Here is a brief summary of my personal favourite excursions by train, bus and cable car:
From Toblach to Lienz
Their proximity to the Austrian border makes the upper reaches of the Puster Valley very convenient for a trip to the nearby town of Lienz. Get on your bike and cycle the 49 kilometres of cycle path along the River Drau from Toblach to Lienz. With few exceptions, the route is off the road and always downhill. The journey back is by train, with bicycles of course along for the ride in the special carriages provided by ÖBB, the Austrian railway service.
From Bozen to the Ritten
The Ritten cable car takes you from the lively provincial capital of Bozen up to the sunny high plateau of the Ritten in just 12 minutes. You can go for long walks there, enjoy the cool mountain air and marvel at a very special natural phenomenon: the Ritten earth pyramids. These are cone-shaped clay formations topped with stones that create bizarre shapes in the landscape.
From Meran to the Reschen Lake
From the beautiful, Mediterranean-esque town of Meran on the River Passer, take the rail and bus service through the Vinschgau Valley in South Tyrol’s westernmost region up to the Reschen Lake: special transportation is provided for bikes. Once at your destination, you can marvel at the part-submerged church tower from a bygone era that transforms the lake into a mystical place; then return to Meran by bike, an 80-kilometre, slightly downhill run with the Vinschgau wind at your back.