Val Gardena

History

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History

History and tales of Val Gardena
It is not easy to summarise thousands of years of history in a few lines – ten thousand years to be exact, as the valley has been a place of settlement since the Mesolithic period, hunters are thought to have passed through a few thousand years before that.
The Bronze Age (2,500 –700 BC) probably witnessed the first settlements of the Rhaetians, the forebears of today’s Ladin population. In the year 15 BC Drusus and Tiberius, stepsons of the Emperor Augustus, conquered the whole central and eastern area of the Alps, including Rhaetia, which was subsequently romanised (some field-names still go back to the Rhaetian period). One product of this process was the Rhaetian language now called Ladin, which is still spoken in a few valleys of the Dolomites.
The migration of the people (starting about 350 AD) also affected the Tyrol and Ladinia, which came under pressure from waves of settlement resulting in the Germanisation of the Alps. The Ladin heritage, however, has been preserved to the present day, a source of cultural variety within the Alpine region.
It was not until well into the Middle Ages that the valley floor was fully cleared and agriculture also spread to higher altitudes. The main crops were barley, rye and buckwheat, followed by the potato on its arrival from America. A rural culture developed on the basis of a centuries-old farming tradition. Life was hard, and affluence was not the fruit of field and mountain pasture.

At Val Gardena, there is tourist accommodation available in hotels, farm holiday, farmhouse, residence self-catering accommodation, mountain chalets, b&b, rooms for rent, holiday homes, camp sites and tourist villages.