Dolomite Mountains at night with the Milky Way, Italy
© Carlos Fernandez/Getty Image
The Rainbow Bridge. Dolomites
Few places in Europe offer the opportunity to take in the Milky Way like the Dolomites. Far from cities and light pollution, and thousands of feet above sea level, the Dolomites offer a stunning, vibrant night sky above sheer, jagged peaks that cut the dark. Also known as the 'Pale Mountains,' the Dolomites are named for the sedimentary carbonate rock called dolomite that was first identified in this range.
The Dolomite region in northeastern Italy boasts more than 2,100 named mountains, including the 'Queen of the Dolomites,' Marmolada, whose Punta Penía is the highest peak of the range. Nature lovers, hikers, and climbers flock to the Dolomites in summer, and the slopes are dominated by skiers and snowboarders during the long winter months. One sure way to appreciate the Dolomites' impressive peaks is to take a hot air balloon over the range.