Bolzano (Italian) or Bozen (German), (Ladin: Balsan, Bulsan) is the capital city of South Tyrol, the German-speaking region in the northern part of Italy. Bolzano is the largest city in the region. Its archaeology museum is famous worldwide as the home of the alpine iceman “Ötzi”. It is also known as the Italian Capital of Christmas thanks to its characteristic Christmas market. Bolzano’s population is around 100,000 (140,000 including the metropolitan area). 25% of inhabitants speak German as their mother tongue; the population of German-speakers is much higher in the non-urban parts of the province (up to more than 90% in some areas), making the city and province officially bilingual.
Together with Innsbruck, Bolzano is officially the capital of the Alps because the seat of the Alpine Convention is there. The world-famous Museum of Archaeology with the Iceman and the Messner Mountain Museum’s main seat make Bolzano a world city of mountaineering history and culture.