Enjoy Christmas in Trentino… in every sense
Discover the most enchanting time of the year with us
In Trentino, the Christmas atmosphere is in the very air you breathe, making this a unique and magical moment for all, even those with an inner Grinch.
Here, amid forests of silver fir trees and frozen mountain lakes, the Christmas spirit is present everywhere you turn, and not just at the festively lit stalls of the Christmas markets scattered all throughout the province: from the most famous ones in the city of Trento, to the small, picturesque ones held in its charming villages!
The sounds, colours, smells and feelings will bring you back in time, to sweet childhood memories. An experience with the taste of hot chocolate and the smell of mulled wine... embrace it with all five senses!
See it with your eyes
See the warm twinkling of the lights that decorate the historic centres of even the smallest towns, where the streets grow narrow and the houses have thick walls to keep the heat in: you might be pleasantly surprised as you stumble upon unexpected views and little piazzas lovingly decorated as Christmas approaches.
And when it comes to festively adorned fir trees, there’s not a single village that doesn’t have at least one large one, usually standing proudly in the main piazza. And that’s not all: there are lots of other fir trees you can see in Trentino, waiting for you to find them in the forests, perhaps hiding beneath a white cloak of early snow.
Silver firs, so called because of the colour on the underside of their needles, are scattered among the spruce trees. Some of these are particularly special: so-called resonant fir trees are prized for the exceptional vibrancy of their wood, which is ideal for making sound boxes for the most prestigious musical instruments. And in the meadows beyond the forest, where there's not too much snow, you can spot the pure white petals of the Christmas rose which begins flowering with the cold December weather.
Smell it with your nose
A sweet smell will start to tease and tempt your nostrils from the beginning of Advent, as typical Christmas treats are being prepared everywhere you go. In addition to the unbeatable Italian classics of panettone and pandoro, it is traditional here to prepare biscuits and Zelten: rich, dense and long-lasting fruit cakes. And what can we say about the richly spiced scent that imbues the air, from the mulled wine brewing in the piazzas? A sip is a must to ward off the cold, but this treat is strictly for the grown-ups!
Your nose might even detect another of the season’s typical features: the smell of winter. Of course, this is a rather special skill, but mountain dwellers are able to recognise cold weather from its smell: an ability that is hard to explain in words. For those who do know the smell, however, it’s one of the signs that herald the arrival of snow. And what could be more delightful than a gentle snowfall on Christmas Eve? See if you can train your nose too!
Taste it with your mouth
We've already mentioned the sweet treats and aromatic mulled wine, but we can’t forget to mention hot chocolate: an essential component of any winter worthy of the name! Whether you prefer it dense or thin, it’s sure to be fragrant with the flavours of cocoa and milk, all the better if you use the creamy milk of cows that spent the summer freely grazing the mountain pastures. From the first sip to the very last spoonful, it's a treat that will warm you up in body and soul and bring a smile to your face, particularly when you catch a glimpse of your chocolate moustache afterwards.
Those who don’t have a sweet tooth can always opt for a cup of hearty soup, perhaps with a generous dash of red wine, just as locals used to do in times gone by before setting out to chop wood in the mountains. The strong, full flavour carries with it the heat of long hours of cooking and the essence of the hearth.
Feel it on your skin
You can enjoy the Christmas feeling with your sense of touch too: in the warm wool of thick socks that spend all year tucked away in a drawer waiting for cold weather, perhaps even the chilly mountain air. What could be cosier? But remember that it’s best to leave a little wriggle room for your feet inside your boots, to improve your circulation, create less condensation and reduce your perception of the cold.
Alternatively, you can get to grips with the powdery feeling of freshly fallen snow, perfect for making round, compact snowballs or — even better — snowmen!
Or get hands-on with wood: the rough and gnarled bark of the fir trees, which becomes smooth and polished when worked by craftspeople and master sculptors to produce figurines for nativity scenes and art of exceptional beauty.
Finally, Christmas is what you will feel as you stroll the streets hand in warm hand with your companion.
Hear it with your ears
Keep your ears pricked at this time of year: you might just catch unexpected bursts of songs and music from the choirs and bands for which we have a rich tradition as you walk the streets of our towns. These are often accompanied by groups of young carollers, bursting with the excitement of the occasion.
You should also sharpen your hearing to listen to a silence that’s never completely still, just outside of the populated areas, where winter casts a drowsiness over nature without freezing it entirely. Even in the cold season you can clearly pick up on the chirping of certain birds, like the white-winged snowfinch, and the sharp cries of buzzards, for example.
Finally, let yourself be bewitched by the crackling of logs in the hearth, releasing the positive energy that makes for sweet dreams, perhaps curled up snugly in a warm blanket on the sofa on a snow-scented afternoon.
Immerse yourself in this magical atmosphere with all five senses, and rediscover the beauty that lies in the little things, with the people you love. Trentino is just the place to do it, and it’s ready and waiting for you.