One of the most interesting fortresses of the Habsburg era, at its opening ceremony in 1838 it was described as “bold as a lion, yet aesthetically beautiful”. Built at a strategically important position in the narrow Eisack Valley, Franzensfeste was ultimately of no use. The enemies it was intended to repel never came. Seven large casemates today contain an exhibition on the fascinating (hi)story of this building and its surroundings. These tales include the legendary hoard of gold belonging to the National Bank of Italy, hidden here during the Second World War. You can also explore the exhibition, as well as large parts of the fortress, on your own. Exciting guided tours additionally open up hidden corners of this mysterious structure.