Parco Naturale Adamello Brenta

Park in Brenta Dolomites

This wild and beautiful park encompasses more than 80 lakes and the vast Adamello glacier, which was once home to the Alps' only brown bears. Although this became a protected area in 1967, by then bear numbers had dwindled to just three. Beginning in 1999, park authorities set about reintroducing Alpine brown bears from Slovenia. The first cubs were born in the park in 2002 and more are born every winter.

Bears aside, the 620-sq-km park – Trentino's largest protected area – is home to ibex, red deer, marmots, chamois and 82 bird species, along with 1200 different mountain flowers, including two (Nigritella buschmannie and Erysimum auranthiacum) that are unique to the area. This wildlife thrives around the banks of Lago di Tovel, set deep in a forest some 30km north of Spormaggiore in the park's heart. An easy one-hour walking trail encircles the once red lake. The lakeside visitors centre has extensive information on other walks.