Aica, a small locality of about 480 inhabitants located at an altitude of 730 m, is not far from the fort complex of Fortezza.
Spanning 65.000 square meters, it's South Tyrol's largest historical site. The village has been first mentioned in 1147. Once upon a time terraced vineyards characterized the landscape in the surroundings of Aica, while today it is mainly surrounded by fruit orchards.
You will be fascinated not only by the barren landscape, there are of course numerous cultural sights nearby and in the surrounding area.
The old Linden Tree – A monumental natural relic
In the Middle Ages, courts of justice were often held under a linden tree.
An old linden tree stands near the walls of the cemetery enclosing the Church of St. Nicholas. Since the trunk is broken and is held together with iron rods, the age of the tree can no longer be determined although it is believed to be a few hundred years old.
The Church of St. Nicholas
It is said that the Church of St. Nicholas was built in 1402 on the site of what was previously a small chapel and the works were terminated approximately in 1464. The frescoes above the door of the church were only discovered during subsequent restorations in 1985 and are probably the work of the renowned painter and sculptor, Michael Pacher.
The chestnut trees of Köstental Valley
At an altitude of 700 m lies the Köstental chestnut orchard in a conservation zone.
During the Medieval Period, the chestnut (also known as the poor man's bread) was a staple food of the population but nowadays it is a sought-after delicacy forming part of the classical South Tyrolean cuisine.