By Lisa Kjellsson and Ted Thornhill and Jennifer Newton for MailOnline
Published: 07:55 GMT, 24 December 2019 | Updated: 07:55 GMT, 24 December 2019
Skiing aside, there are myriad reasons to visit the Alps – not least that it is arguably one of the most picturesque environments on Earth.
As this stunning portfolio of pictures shows.
Our collection will transport you across the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies entirely in Europe. One that stretches approximately 750 miles across eight countries: France, Switzerland, Monaco, Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, and Slovenia.
Below you can gaze at a mesmerising shot of its highest point, Mont Blanc, which stands 15,781ft above sea level; the 14,692ft-tall Matterhorn on the Swiss-Italian border; the Austrian town of Innsbruck, which has one of the most eye-popping runway approaches in the world, and the picture-postcard-perfect town of Lech, which is festooned with five-star hotels.
We also have a jaw-dropping image of one of the world’s most extreme roads.
Scroll down and it’ll become quickly apparent why around 120million visitors descend on the region throughout the year…
Sunrise at the Matterhorn, which is reflected in Riffelsee lake in Zermatt, Switzerland. The Matterhorn is 14,692ft tall
Hallstatt village, on the banks of Lake Hallstatt, in the Salzkammergut region of Austria, is a Unesco World Heritage site
Val d’Isere in France is one of the Alps’ most popular, and glamorous, resorts. Skiers are lured by 186 miles of runs, jaw-dropping off-piste action – and more boutique lodges than you can shake a glass of Krug Champagne at
Golden larch trees are beautifully offset against the snow on the shore of Lake Sils in Maloja, Engadin, in the Swiss canton of Graubünden
Meribel is a hugely popular resort. This image shows a beautiful sunset there – and one of its chairlift systems disappearing dramatically into a thick wall of cloud
The French Alps is the ideal destination for a whole host of leisure and outdoor activities – skiing, hiking, mountaineering, white water rafting, pot-holing, mountain biking, thermal bathing and much more besides. The picture above was taken near Chambery
An aerial view of the Julier Pass in St. Moritz, Switzerland, which connects the Engadin valley with the rest of Graubünden
The Austrian town of Innsbruck really comes into its own in winter when the Christmas market on Maria-Theresien-Strasse adds festive cheer to this slice of the Alpine region
Bergün is a traditional village in the Albula region in the canton of Graubünden in western Switzerland
The Gran Paradiso massif, seen here from the Valsavaranche comune, is a mountain in the Graian Alps in Italy, located between the Aosta Valley and Piedmont regions
The Madonna del Sasso Church above Locarno city on the shore of Lake Maggiore, Switzerland
The Matterhorn, Findelbach Bridge and the Glacier Express pictured at Gornergrat, near Zermatt, in the Swiss Pennine Alps
An aerial view of the Great Aletsch Glacier – the largest in the Alps – in the eastern Bernese Alps in the Swiss canton of Valais. It is 23km (14 miles) long
The Alpine town of Pontboset in Valle d’Aosta in northwestern Italy, which has an eye-catching medieval bridge
A curved bridge over Lake Sylvenstein in Bavaria, Germany, reflected in the water and framed by colourful autumn foliage
Royal families love the exclusive resort of Lech in Austria, including those from the Netherlands and Jordan. Princess Diana was a big fan too. Among Alpine resorts, you’ll only find a higher concentration of five-star hotels in France’s Courchevel
It’s easy to see how Parco Nazionale Gran Paradiso, in Piemonte, Italy, got its name. In summertime, the valley is covered in cottongrass
Interlaken is a beautiful little town in the Bernese Oberland region of central Switzerland, between the emerald-coloured waters of Lake Thun and Lake Brienz
Lake Bohinj is the largest permanent lake in Slovenia. It is located within the Bohinj Valley of the Julian Alps, in the northwestern Upper Carniola region
The Stelvio Pass (Passo dello Stelvio, Stilfser Joch) is a mountain pass in northern Italy at an elevation of 2,757 m (9,045ft). It is the highest paved mountain pass in the Eastern Alps and the second-highest in the Alps
Courmayeur is an Alpine resort in northwest Italy, at the foot of Mont Blanc. It’s known for the SkyWay Monte Bianco cable car, offering views of peaks like the Matterhorn and Monte Rosa
A road sign with arrows for hiking and biking tourist trails on a road between the villages of Wengen and Lauterbrunnen in Bernese Oberland, Switzerland. The Jungfrau mountain is visible in the background
Cirque du Fer-à-Cheval, located in Sixt, France, is an immense semi-circle of dramatic peaks, with many waterfalls, including the 295ft-tall Rouget fall (pictured)
Part of the Rhaetian railway – pictured here by the Bernina Pass in Switzerland – has Unesco World Heritage status. It’s one of only three lines in the world to have received the honour
The French Alpine village of Courchevel 1850, named after its altitude and known for its luxury hotels and Michelin-starred restaurants. Pictured here is its airport, where private jets and helicopters drop off the wealthiest visitors
A panoramic view of Courchevel, a resort loved by Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge
Boats on Switzerland’s Lake Lucerne in Weggis village with a view of Pilatus mountain and the Swiss Alps in the background
Mont Blanc, France – the highest mountain in Europe west of the Caucasus peaks in Russia and Georgia. The first recorded successful climb of Mont Blanc – which marks the start of modern mountaineering – was by Chamonix-born crystal hunter Jacques Balmat and Michel Gabriel Paccard, a doctor, on August 8, 1786. They completed the feat unroped and without ice axes, heavily burdened with scientific equipment. Now, more than 30,000 people attempt to climb Mont Blanc each year
On the approach to Innsbruck Airport, Austria, planes pass thrillingly close to the mountains. Taking off and landing is so tricky that only captains are permitted to be at the controls
Fort Bard is a fortified complex built in the 19th century by the House of Savoy on a rocky prominence above Bard, a town and commune in the Aosta Valley region of northwestern Italy
The breathtaking view from above Innsbruck city. The cable car system you can see links Innsbruck to the Nordkette, the southernmost mountain chain of the Karwendel
On a clear day, the view is magnificent from the observation deck in Interlaken, a traditional resort town in the mountainous Bernese Oberland region of central Switzerland
Incredible images that show the beauty and majesty of the Alps
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