The Fortress’ Trek: Navigating across a sea of history.

These proposals are established and inspired by intelligent and modern tourism: whether it is to discover sites, the environment or historical places. It’s tourism that embraces values, content and encounters.

This is, in my belief, a wonderful forthcoming opportunity for those involved in the tourism industry in the mountain regions and who wish to create social and economic projects that teach sustainability and respect nature and local populations, their identity and especially their past.  

We should have a deep respect for the inhabitants of the mountains and their history; the mountains are like an open book that is dedicated to the history of their inhabitants, those of Trentino, as well as, in the rest of the world. This is because mountains have always been a place of life and civilization, where man and nature convene.

The history of civilisation is written on its mountains. The mountains show us, travellers of the 21st century- usually too distracted, superficial and superfluous-, how to abandon anxiety and our frenetic lifestyles. All that is required is a simple trek through its trails, stopping, every so often, to glance, reflect and ponder. The mountain offers a spiritual dimension, a journey through existence.

All of this is enriched even further with values and stories that 90 years ago played an important role in the events that shaped Europe’s destiny. It was in these very mountains, on the border of the German and Italian worlds, that armed conflicts marked this landscape with immense suffering, heroism and tragedy. 

For this reason, the Trek of the Emperor’s Fortresses, proposed by the Tourist Boards of Trento, Folgaria, Levico, Riva del Garda and Rovereto, is highly esteemed: by exploring these territories, the sensible and intelligent traveller will be able to walk through and relive, the experiences of those who, 90 or so years ago, took part in these great armed conflicts. 

Nowhere else in the Alps or in Europe is there such an immense concentration of mountain fortresses and fortifications and a journey through the Emperor’s Fortresses of the Trentino region will be like navigating across a sea of history, within the mystical Dolomites.

Reinhold Messner