Whether you like to take things slow and savour the view or hike yourself fit, here are a select few of the best hikes and trails around the globe.
Reach new heights with these amazing hikes, as voted by international travel bloggers and writers:
The starting point of the trail is Kleine-Scheidegg, a mountain pass located between the peaks of Eiger and Lauberhorn. It is also the lower terminus of the Jungfraubahn, the highest railroad in Europe. There are frequent trains from the town of Grindelwald to Kleine-Scheidegg and the town itself is well-connected to the Swiss rail network, SBB.
This trail goes along the north wall of the Eiger Glacier, treating you to panoramas, while taking you closer to the town of Grindelwald below.
The path is not very difficult, neither is it dangerous (but it is long!). It cuts its way gradually through the rock, taking you lower at a leisurely pace.
Consisting of dirt and rock all the way, it really tests your stamina. Six kilometres in length, the trail officially ends at Alpiglen, a settlement halfway down the mountain and served by a train station.
From the highest point on the Eiger trail, the gondolas ferrying visitors to the adjacent peak of Männlichen look like mere dots along the mountainside, with the valleys of Grindelwald and Lauterbrunnen spread out below…
Traveller’s Tip: Carry plenty of food of water. Restaurants are only at the endpoints of the trail and are very expensive (as with everywhere else in Switzerland). Also, visiting in winter isn’t recommended as ice might make the trail risky.
South Rim Trail
Big Bend National Park is a special place. Not only is it vast and full of dramatic views, it’s also a place where you can see two countries at once: Mexico and the United States.
The South Rim hike is our all-time favorite because we truly felt like we escaped to another world. It took around ten hours for us to trek the somewhat strenuous trail. It was a challenging day hike but the beauty around every turn made it more than worth it!
The Rio Grande river snakes through countless mountains and valleys, making Big Bend a dream for nature and hiking lovers. You can even take a boat across the Rio Grande and visit the small Mexican village of Boquillas.
Since Big Bend National Park is in such a secluded place, there is no light pollution, meaning the night sky will be full of stars… Whether it’s the mountains, the wildlife or the stars twinkling over the Rio Grande, you’re in for a treat at Big Bend National Park!
Hike Details: The South Rim Trail Hike starts at the Chisos Basin Trail head. Keep on that path until you reach the Laguna Meadow Trail. From Laguna Meadow, you’ll come to Colima Trail. After you’ve been on Colima Trail for a while, you’ll see a turnoff for the South Rim Trail… The South Rim will give you some truly breathtaking views.
If you have more time, you can connect to the East Rim Trail or you can take Boot Canyon Trail all the way to Pinnacles Trail and back to Chisos Basin Trail… Happy hiking!
Pigeon Valley in Cappadocia
I run out of adjectives when I think about Cappadocia. It’s a region that is most unique. It has distinctive rock formations and can’t be compared with any other place in the world. It’s also recognised as a UNESCO world heritage site.
My first impressions were, is this still planet earth? If yes, did I time travel past 1000 years or more? This place takes us back to the stone age. Hiking in the valleys of Cappadocia gives a godly experience.
Out of all the hikes, my favourite one is Pigeon Valley hike – it being one of the longest. It’s a moderate level trek of about 4.5 kilometres. It’s located between Göreme and the Uçhisar Castle.
The trail starts from Göreme and involves walking on plain land, hiking, (basic) rock climbing along the high sided cliffs and walking inside an ancient tunnel.
Traveller’s Tip: There are not too many people on the trail… Carry a map, enough water and emergency phone numbers before you start the trial. I got lost a couple of times (all for good) and landed up in dead ends of the valley with great views.
Country: South Africa
My personal favourite is the Tranquility Cracks hike. Starting from the glamourous Camps Bay side, it feeds from the popular Pipe Tracks. So you cover two great trails in one hike. Although relatively easy overall, the higher you climb, the more tiring (especially up Corridor Ravine) it is.
Your path offers breathtaking views out across Camps Bay, wild Proteas and other rich flora. When you finally reach the top, the valley overlooks the back of Table Mountain, Constantia Valley and False Bay beyond. But the Cracks are the main focal point. They’re fascinating, puzzle-piece like rock formations…
It’s a truly unique and rewarding hike and arguably one of the best I have ever encountered in South Africa!
Traveller’s Tip: Pack in plenty of water and snacks, as well as a warm top (even in good weather) and sun protection. Also, please don’t attempt this hike alone. It is long and at times, is fairly isolating. Hiking time varies between 4-6 hours there and back.
By: Tamlyn Amber Wanderlust
Author: Tamlyn Ryan
Content writer by day and blogger by night, Tamlyn Ryan passionately runs her own travel blog, called Tamlyn Amber Wanderlust, from her home base of Cape Town, South Africa. And, despite a national diploma in Journalism, in her free time, Tamlyn’s preferred niche remains travel writing.
Tamlyn is a hopeless wanderer, equipped with an endless passion for road trips, carefully planned, holiday itineraries and, above all else, an innate love for the great outdoors.