This planet is endlessly beautiful and travelling around it and exploring its extraordinary scenery is the dream of many. That is why it’s worth taking a leap of faith and getting out there, perhaps to ‘climb every mountain and search high and low’ as the song suggests.
For the real adventurer and avid hiker, it is one of the ways you’ll know how far you can go and how much stamina you’ve got. Conquering these mountains will offer a sense of reconnecting with the planet and all its magical features. You probably even have a list of hikes, cycling expeditions, and travels that you’ve sworn you’ll undertake soonest. You’ll be inspired to make your explorer-fuelled dreams come true. To aid the way here is a hiking wish list to lead the way.
The Narrows, USA
This 16-mile hiking trail is located in Zion National Park and is carved perfectly by the Virgin River. About 8 miles of this trail is inside the Virgin River, so you need to perfect your swimming skills before taking on the challenge. Its scenery is more than breathtaking and the challenge is exhilarating. The entire hike takes experienced hikers about 8-10 hours, but you can still make it within a day even if you are an amateur hiker or swimmer. After the hike, you will enjoy camping in the Zion National Park all night in one of the park’s 12 camping grounds.
Tour Du Mont Blanc
This trail stretches through 3 European countries- France, Italy, and Switzerland. It is one of the longest hikes in the world and arguably the most popular in Europe. It covers approximately 110 miles, although you will be ascending and descending for slightly over 6 miles. You will need at least 7-11 days to complete the trek but it could take longer for inexperienced trekkers. The beauty around this trail is unreal- From the idyllic alpine meadows to the glacier-filled glacial valleys, and the distinctive mountain peaks. You can opt to pay a tour guide or take on a Tour du Mont Blanc Self-Guided. You will also have the chance of ascending to the rooftop of Western Europe, which is almost 16,000 feet high.
Pennine Way, England
This mountainous trek is 268 miles long and is cut out from England’s toughest terrain. It will take you approximately 18-20 days to get to the Scottish border where it concludes. It passes through the UK’s most beautiful and breathtaking sights such as the Hadrian’s Wall, the moors of Bronte Country, and through the limestone cliffs and High Cup Nick glacial valleys. It wounds through England’s wildest zones, so you will need to break it up into small, manageable chunks to avoid overheating and getting fatigued mid-hike.
Inca Trail, Peru
Peru is known for its beautiful landscapes and sensational weather. If you would want to learn a little more history of the Incas, then you need to visit this South American nation and hike the ancient trail of Machu Picchu. Only about 200 hikers are around to hike up to the lost city at the hilltop every day so you may have to book beforehand.
Pays Dogon, Mali
This trail is arguably the greatest of all hikes in West Africa. It is scenic, breathtaking, and challenging in equal measure. The locals fondly call it ‘the land of the Dogon people’. It will take you about 10 days to ascend to the peaks. While here, you will interact with local people and enjoy their rich culture in their Dogon villages. Here you should let the inspiration take over you and express it in your writings, taking photos or even creating new sounds with your music making software.
Everest Base Camp, Nepal
The romanticism associated with the world’s highest mountain has made it more popular than most hike trails in the world. The base is found 18,193 feet above sea level. If you can successfully hike here, then you will be one of the few people in the world to achieve that feat. Everest Base Camp is one of the most breathtaking places you can visit in Nepal.
Laugavegur Route, Iceland
Lastly, the famed Laugavegur Route! It passes through volcanic highlands, steaming hot springs, raging waterfalls, and snow-speckled mountain ridges, among other breathtaking sights. Note that the sun rarely sets here. This is a place you will probably never experience again in your life. After you return home, imagine all the inspiration you will get from seeing these places and beautiful views, you will have new ideas about your work, your home remodelling or your artistic expressions.
If you love hiking, read my Seven Best Hiking Trails to do in Cape Town.
As a hiking enthusiast, you need to be ready to brave the harshest climates and tough terrains in order to reach the highest peaks. And because you understand the fun of adventure, you sure must have loved our list above. Now go ahead and traverse those canyons, valleys, and climb those mountains. Keep in mind that these hotspots are also a great opportunity for biking enthusiasts. Some of those valleys and mountains are definitely the right terrain for your next mountain biking expedition.
** Guest post by Desa Rome.