The Italian Alps spread from Mont Blanc and the French border in the west, past the German-speaking region of South Tyrol or Alto Adige, all the way to the Slovenian border and Mt. Triglav. It's a long and dramatic series of mountainscapes, and we've picked out a couple of our favourite places at opposite ends of the chain.
Near Aosta, Nira Montana offers fabulous husky sledding, heli-skiing, bobsleigh runs, rafting and horse riding, as well as the usual array of hiking and mountain biking in summer, and snowsports in winter (La Thuile has 160km of nursery, intermediate and advanced runs).
Over in South Tyrol, hilltop vigilius is perfectly placed for hiking, biking and climbing routes, not to mention paragliding and archery in summer; or snow-shoeing, cross-country or Alpine skiing in winter. But you can also factor in some culture: vineyard tours, castle visits or one of the region's two modern art museums: Mart (in Rovereto) and Museion (in the capital Bolzano), the latter housed in a futurist oblong cube. Local cuisine is superb, and there are some innovative spas too, including thermal waters and mountain hay treatments.