The territory of Western Europe is mostly flat. However, about 17 percent of its area is still occupied by mountain ranges. First of all, these are the Alps, then the Pyrenees, the Carpathians, the Apennines and others. The highest mountains in Western Europe are undoubtedly the Alps, which are also considered the most extensive (300 sq. Km) system of ridges and massifs.
The largest mountain system in Western Europe, the Alps, is located on the territory of 8 states. A zigzag line of ridges, ridges, hills stretched in an arc from the Ligurian Sea (France, Monaco, Italy) to the Middle Danube Plain (Austria, Slovenia) for 1200 km.
The highest mountains of Western Europe are conditionally divided into two parts: Western (higher) and Eastern (lower). By the way, the first part, in turn, is divided into two more halves, as a result, the Central Alps stand out, which pass through Switzerland, Austria and Italy.
The Eastern Alps stretch acrossSwitzerland, Italy, Germany, Liechtenstein, Austria and Slovenia. They are much lower than Western ones. Their highest point is Mount Bernina, located in Switzerland. Its height is 4049 meters.
In Germany, the highest mountain is Zugspitze (almost 3000 m). In Austria - Grossglockner (3798 m).
Mont Blanc - the top of the peaks
The highest mountains in Western Europe contain the highest peak in this part of the world. Mount Blanc is located in the Western Alps on the border between Italy and France, its height reaches 4810 meters. In length, it stretches for 50 kilometers in the form of a crystalline array.
Mont Blanc means "white mountain". This is understandable, the snowy peak is also covered with ice. By the way, the Mont Blanc glaciation area covers about 200 square meters. km. Therefore, reaching the "white mountain" was difficult and more than once ended in the death of climbers.
And yet the highest mountains of Western Europe, including their main peak, submitted to people. On August 8, 1786, the doctor Michel-Gabriel Paccard and his guide Jacques Balma climbed to the coveted height. It is interesting that in 1886 the expedition led by Theodore Roosevelt, the future US President, reached the White Mountain.
For exotic lovers
Today Mont Blanc is an attractive place for lovers of winter sports, rock climbers and just travelers, however, well prepared physically.
For example, a 130-kilometer tourist route runs around Mont Blanc. It captures the territories of Switzerland, Italy and France anddivided into 10 stages based on: from 3 to 10 hours on the way through the scenic area.
We have also developed routes that allow you to reach the edge of the glaciers, for example, to the Chalet de Pyramides from the Chamonix valley.
Since 1958, a cable car has been operating on Mont Blanc, by which you can climb the massif, but, of course, not to the highest point of the mountain. However, the peak of the Aiguille du Midi (3842 m), where the cable car takes tourists, makes it possible to appreciate the attractive beauty of these ranges. And under Mont Blanc there is a 12-kilometer tunnel through which you can drive from Italy to France by car.
Pyrenees - the highest mountains of Western Europe
The Pyrenees seem to enclose the Iberian Peninsula in the north, isolating Spain from the rest of Europe, stretching from the shores of the Bay of Biscay for 450 kilometers to the Mediterranean Sea.
The Pyrenees are divided into three parts based on natural conditions: Western (Atlantic), Central (High) and Eastern (Mediterranean).
The Central Pyrenees are called high because their largest peaks are located here. Aneto Peak, the highest point of the Pyrenees, rises 3404 meters above sea level, Mount Posay 3375 meters, Monte Perdido 3355 meters, Mount Vinhmal 3298 meters, Pic Lon 3194 meters.
On the territory of the Pyrenees, a dwarf state, the Principality of Andorra, inhabited mainly by Catalans, fits entirely.
Pyreneesknown for their karst caves, which are unique due to stalactites, underground lakes, and prehistoric rock paintings. The Pyrenees-Occidental nature reserve and the Spanish National Park of Ordesa y Monte Perdido are also famous.
In the Iberian Peninsula
This peninsula should not be overlooked if we continue to consider the theme "Mountains of Western Europe". The list will be replenished first with the Cantabrian mountains, which follow the Pyrenees, although lower than them, but also quite high (Picos de Europa, up to 2613 m). To the south of them is the vast Meseta massif, its plateau divided by the ridges of the Central Cordillera up to 2592 meters high.
There are also the Iberian mountains up to 2313 meters high. And finally, the Andalusian mountains. It is they who hold the second place after the Alps in terms of the height of mountain peaks. Mount Mulasen (the Sierra Nevada range) rises to 3487 m. This is the highest peak not only of the peninsula, but also of Spain. It offers wonderful views of the Corral Hanging Glacier and other peaks of the Sierra Nevada.
Mountain range - Apennines
Mountains in Western Europe are among the most picturesque corners of the earth, proof of this is the Apennines, which cross the peninsula in the middle and pass through Italy.
Vineyards, olive and lemon trees are grown in the lower part of the hill (500–700 m). At an altitude of 900–1000 m, mixed and then coniferous forests grow. Alpine and subalpine meadows are getting closer to the peaks.
The highest point of the Apennines is Corno Grande, its height is 2912 meters.By the way, snow in these mountains can only be found there.
Unfortunately, such mountain beauty of the Apennines is fraught with danger. There is very high seismic activity here: earthquakes in this region of Europe are not uncommon. Mount Vesuvius is located in the south of the Apennine Peninsula. Mount Etna (3076 m, Sicily) is a tectonic continuation of the Apennines. Both of them are active, so there is a constant danger of eruptions.
The mountains of Western Europe are indescribably beautiful! Photos, especially well-taken ones, of course, reflect some of this beauty.