Alps from six miles above that make the huge mountains look like a tiny replica
- Basti Hansen used a rented plane to travel up to 36,000ft before taking these amazing pictures
- At that height he would have passed four miles above the summit of Switzerland's tallest mountain Monte Rosa
- The highest mountain wholly in Switzerland is Dom, the third highest in the Alps and stands at 15,000ft
As the ski season gets underway, thousands of tourists will be packing their bags and heading off to the Swiss Alps to enjoy themselves on the slopes.
However, one man has taken a different approach and has instead spent his time six miles above the pistes capturing these stunning photographs.
Using a rented aircraft, photographer Basti Hansen took shots of the magnificent mountains as few people will have seen them before.
Basti Hansen used a rented aeroplane in order to capture these pictures from nearly four miles above the Alps highest peak, that of Monte Rosa
Hansen took the pictures from near Locarno, a small town of roughly 15,000 people on the northern tip of Lake Maggiore
Taking off from Locarno, a small town of 15,000 people on the northern tip of Lake Maggiore, he flew to 36,000ft before taking out his camera.
At that height he would have passed four miles over the Swiss Alps' highest peak, that of Monte Rosa, which stands at just under three miles high.
In one photograph he captures the mountain range, which covers around 65 per cent of Switzerland, bathed in golden sunlight.
Down below the plane the Alps, which proved an impassable barrier to men and armies throughout history, look like miniature models
In several other pictures the snowy mountain tops can be seen poking through clouds which seem to flow through the steep valleys below.
In one amazing shot the curvature of the Earth can even be seen above the peaks, with the sombre darkness of space across the top of the picture.
While the ski season can start as early as November and last until May, most Swiss resorts open during December with skiing running through until April.
Here the peaks of some of Switzerland's mountains can be seen jutting through the clouds which seem to fill the valleys in between them
Every year thousands of tourists take to the Swiss slopes on skiing holidays with the industry making up 3 per cent of Switzerland's total economy
Tourism accounts for around 3 per cent of Switzerland's total economy with some of the most popular destinations being Davos, Verbier and Valais.
The highest mountain to lie entirely within Swiss borders is the Dom, which rises nearly 15,000ft and is the third highest in the Alps.
The town of Locarno is small but steeped in history. Excavations from the region have found burial urns dating from the bronze age, around the 14th century BC.
It was also the location for talks after the First World War which formed the basis of a peace agreement signed by France, Germany, Belgium, England and Italy in London on December 1 1925.