The Dolomites – UNESCO World Natural Heritage site

Bizarre rock formations are a typical feature of the “pale mountains” (“monti pallidi” in Italian), which glow fiery red at sunset.

More than any other mountain range, the Dolomites – with their pronounced bands of rock – tell the story of their creation and provide striking evidence of the history of the Earth.

The rock of the Dolomites is made up of petrified coral reefs that grew 230 million years ago on the bed of an ancient sea. The collision of the continental plates thrust the rock up and out of the sea, forming the spectacular mountains that now soar up to 3,000 metres under a mostly radiant blue sky.

By the way: The name “Dolomites” goes back to the French geologist Déodat de Dolomieu, who was the first to describe this type of rock.

Today the Dolomites are world-famous for spectacular walking and skiing. In June 2009 they were placed on UNESCO's World Natural Heritage list.

To learn more about the subject, join our experienced local skiing and walking guides on one of our guided outings.