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The Italian Alps are a winter and summer playground where hikers, bikers and fans of watersports will revel in the mountain terrain. From high Alpine meadows to craggy cliffs and glacial lakes, once the snow has gone the Alps get active.

1527 italy alps mountain bike credit antonio s

The Italian Alps run across the north of the country, bordering France, Switzerland and Austria, and stretch from the Aosta Valley in the west to the Dolomites in the east. The differences between the various regions are striking – from the majestic peaks and steep valleys around Aosta to the sheer jagged cliffs and rolling pastures of the Dolomites with the shimmering lakes of Como and Maggiore in between, the region has plenty to offer. The road cycling in the Aosta Valley is world class and a leg of the Giro d’Italia often includes one or two of the region’s 21 scenic routes. If you prefer your two wheels to be a little more rugged, there is more than 1000km of off-road tracks to explore by mountain bike. Moving east, the Italian Lakes in Lombardy are a glamorous backdrop for cycling, hiking, and of course all water sports, while the Dolomites, even further east, are perfect for climbers and paragliders. A string of airports serve the Italian Alps, and are all served by scheduled and budget airlines from the UK – Turin, Milan, Bergamo, Verona and Venice.