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Extreme sports in Italy

Thrill seekers and extreme sports lovers will find Italy is the ideal place in which to experience their passions. The "Belpaese" in fact offers endless opportunities to practice all types of extreme sports: ground, air or water ones. This is the country of national parks, mountain ranges and rivers full of water which make rafting one of the most popular extreme sports in Italy; just board a boat and follow the course of a stream through the rapids..Rafting in Valtellina

There are many places to venture into, starting with the current of the river Noce, in Val di Sole, in the beautiful scenery of the Trento Dolomites, or in Val d'Aosta, following the course of the Baltea, considered the Colorado of Italy. Umbria is famous for rafting both at the Marmore Falls (Terni), and near Norcia on the river Corno. Calabria in Southern Italy offers the Lao River Valley. Other equipped places in the North can be found in Lombardy: the Ticino River, in the area of Monte Visconti, in the Province of Vercelli in Piedmont, at the foot of Monte Rosa, and in S. Nazario in the Veneto region, in the River Brenta.

More adventurous tourists can also practice Canyoning amongst Italian water sports; this is very often organized in roped parties with other people to go up or down the bed of a stream. Canyoning takes place in the already mentioned rivers or streams where you can practice rafting, to which we add the rivers of Abruzzo, Friuli Venezia Giulia, those near Lake Garda and Sicily, in the spectacular gorges of Alcantara.

Among the novelties of extreme sports "fly pulley" has also caught on in Italy; better known as "Angel's Flight" you are secured by a harness and hook to a long steel cable connected to both ends of a valley or between two mountains which enables you to freefall. In Italy you can practise fly pulley from Pietrapertosa to Castelmezzano, in the province of Potenza, on the Dolomites of Basilicata in the heart of this beautiful region, but also in Valtellina, a few steps from Lake Como starting from Albaredo, in the province of Sondrio, and arriving in Bema, and finally in San Vigilio di Marebbe, in the province of Bolzano, suspended 1000 metres high in the Dolomites.

From water to air, another extreme sport is paragliding which is often practiced on Italian heights: an experience on the two-seater with an instructor, or alone but only for more experienced people. You can take off from Monte Baldo, between the provinces of Trento and Verona, and admire Lake Garda; from Norma, in the province of Latina, on the Lepine mountains, or from Calascio, Abruzzo, in the National Park of Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga. Other launch sites are Monte Pollino, with the view of the coast of Calabria, and Piana degli Albanesi in Sicily where you can fly over the nature reserve of Serre della Pizzuta.

Furthermore, among the most popular extreme sports there is also bungee jumping: a launch into space from a bridge, a crane or a suspended structure, attached to a rubber band and harnessed by the ankles. Anyone wishing to experience the thrill of jumping into a void will find itinerant Bungee Centres often located in seaside resorts during the summer.
Among the amusement parks there is Aqualandia at the Lido di Jesolo, whilst bridges from which to leap can be found in Veglio-Mosso (Biella), Tirona near Imperia, Loreto, Caramanico Terme in Abruzzo, and in the Grotta dei Colombi located in the Gulf of Orosei. Those reaching the Viaduct of Valgadena (on the plateau of Asiago) can leap from the third highest bridge in Europe. 

Useful Information

Some of the most popular places where to practice extreme sports 

Rafting and Canyoning 

The Rivers: Noce, Dora Baltea, Cascata delle Marmore, Lao, Brenta, Ticino, and the Alcantara Gorges. 

Fly Pulley 

Pietrapertosa (Potenza), Albaredo (Sondrio), San Vigilio (Bolzano). 

Paragliding

Monte Baldo, Monte Lepine, Calascio, Monte Pollino, Piana degli Albanesi. 

Bungee jumping 

Veglio Mosso, Tirona, Loreto, Caramancio Terme, Gulf of Orosei, Viaduct of Valgadena.