What I heard in Italy:
I just returned from a week of hiking in the Alps of Italy known as the Dolomites with a group of 14 Italians from across the country. Led by Giancarlo of Genoa, we hiked across mountain passes, viewed dozens of waterfalls, and visited the many mountain huts (rifugios) where a tired hiker can get an expresso with a shot of grappa to keep his strength up. And most importantly, it was a chance to really get to know some wonderful people who graciously forgave my many blunders with the Italian language.
Check out this short video to see the mountains and people: