Collected by Jen Murphy, AFAR Contributor
There's no better place to get an adrenaline rush than the Alps. Whether you're in Italy, France, or Switzerland the mountains offer plenty of adventures year-round. The hard core can find thrills skiing and mountain biking while those seeking something new can try quirky activities like riding monster scooters or rodeling.
3920 Zermatt, Switzerland
Just as Rome has the Colosseum and Paris the Eiffel Tower, so Switzerland has the Matterhorn. Located above Zermatt, this 48,195-foot wonder attracts hordes of visitors, eager to see the morning sunlight beam off its four faces, ski its...
1948 Bagnes, Switzerland
Verbier is known for it’s amazing après ski scene, great powder, and pricey accommodations. To save some money, stay just outside of town in the neighboring village of Lourtier, where husband and wife Patricia and Jean-Marc Pellissier run the...
Verbier, 1936 Bagnes, Switzerland
The charming Swiss village of Verbier is a breeding ground for fearless, thrill-seeking mountain bikers. Be warned, though: Even a rockstar mountain biker from Colorado or Utah will feel like he needs training wheels when he tackles these...
3906 Saas Fee, Switzerland
Swiss mountaineers do not mess around. One look at our group’s footwear—a mix of trail running sneakers and amateurish hiking boots—and they told us we should go back to bed. We were in Saas-Fee and pumped to be ascending the Mittaghorn via...
1920 Martigny, Switzerland
I was always wary of bungee jumping, so imagine my trepidation when I was strapped into a harness and told to step (or jump if I dared) off a small ledge and swing out over a seriously deep gorge. We were in Martigny and our guides had led us down...
3910 Saas-Grund, Switzerland
If mountain biking sounds a bit too extreme take to the trails on a monster scooter. The scooter version of a Big Wheels, it has extra large tires that provides stability but still allows you to pick up speed and brake like a mountain bike. From...
Mischistrasse 23, 3906 Saas-Fee, Switzerland
For a different view of Saas-Fee, tackle the ropes course in the town's Adventure Forest. Four courses increase in their degree of difficulty with obstacles ranging from monkey bars to tight rope walks. The last two sections are a true test of...
Aiguille du Midi, 74400 Chamonix, France
France's Chamonix Valley is one of the most scenic places on the European continent. It's a narrow river valley which houses everything from rock-climbing centers to pulsing bars and pubs, and on both sides of the river the peaks of the French...
Mürren, 3825 Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland
More so than most places, Switzerland offers serious skiers the chance to fly down unblemished mountainsides—especially in Mürren. The town is blessed with powder-packed bowls that maintain fresh snow for days after a big fall, drawing...
Bahnhofpl. 6, 3920 Zermatt, Switzerland
After 20 minutes on a series of gondolas, we arrived at the top of Rothorn peak and walked over to our take off point. My friend, Hera, turned to her guide and said, "Uhhh, I didn't realize I would have to run off of a cliff!" "It's more like...
9050 Appenzell District, Switzerland
Hiking from Appenzell to Wasserauen, the trail took me through parks, villages, and right through the farmlands of the locals. The day of my hike was overcast and foggy, but when we passed this cluster of farms the sun came out and lit up the...