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At Maps Over Coffee, we aim to bring the best of the best bucket lists in the world to you. We would like to say that we have covered them all, but far from it.
That’s why we invite other writers to contribute stellar posts on our website, to bring you with them on their adventures.
This week we are please to bring you The Most Amazing Hiking Trails in the World by Catalin Geangos. Catalin is an intrepid traveler with vast experience in world exploration.
I’m sure you’ll agree that if you haven’t been on any of these trails, you will want to pack your bags by the end of this.
Enjoy this introduction to some spectacular hiking trails.
Most Amazing Hiking Trails in the World
Nature lovers love to hike. They love to walk down the countryside as they gaze at nature’s beauty. In some regions in Europe, they call it waking for pleasure.
For most people, the simplicity of putting on a pair of hiking shoes and heading off into the remote countryside holds a strong appeal. The stillness of the landscape, the solitude, the beautiful scenery, and the crisp fresh air are some of the things that inspire hikers to tackle hiking trails and treks around the world.
All that said, if you love nature and just need that little inspiration to plan your next epic hiking adventure, you’re in the right place. Because today, we would make a list of the most amazing hiking trails in the world.
El Caminito Del Rey Hike, Spain
El Caminito del Rey Hike is usually known as the king’s little path is a 7.7-kilometer walkway along the high mountains of El Chorro in the province of Malaga, Spain.
After a total renovation of the walkway, the unique natural surroundings of the Caminito del Rey can now be enjoyed by everyone with the help of modern platforms made from wood and steel. The renovation has also improved the level of security for hikers providing a great feeling of hiking at a very high altitude of about 100 meters. The view of the mountain landscape is an unforgettable experience.
Interestingly, Caminito del Rey’s hike is a couple of minutes away from the beaches of Malaga. This makes it a perfect destination during excursions to Costa del Sol. Exploring the mountainous interior of Caminito del Rey is a different experience entirely. It feels like a different world completely. Visitors can also relish the orange grooves along the walkway before embarking on their hike. The air feels pure and fresh. It was also designated as one of the best places in Europe for making a look at the stars.
El Caminito del Rey is of the most amazing hiking trails in the world.
Annapurna Circuit Hike, Nepal
The Annapurna circuit trail is one of the longest walkways for hikers. It covers a distance of about 205 kilometers (108 miles) through some of the tallest peaks in the world. The walkway starts from a lower steamy jungle and ascends above the tree line.
The trail is surrounded by a dazzling landscape of mountains all over 20,000 feet (above 6,000 meters). Another highlight of the trail is making it to the top of Poon Hill. At the top of the hill, you can view the sunrise. From that point, you will be able to see about 8 of the 14 highest mountain peaks on the planet.
Aside from the popularity of the Annapurna Circuit, embarking on the hike demands a high level of fitness. This is because it takes several days to complete the hike coupled with slopes and high elevations. To make your trip much more enjoyable, you can consider hiring porters for your backpack. Another interesting aspect of the trail is the variety of people from around the world you’d across. They can make the evenings enjoyable.
Kilimanjaro Hike, Tanzania
Kilimanjaro is one of the most popular and iconic sites in the whole of Africa. It is also regarded as one of the most amazing hiking trails in the world. The hike to the top of the mountain is many people’s dream. The record has it that about 30,000 people attempt the hike to the top of Kilimanjaro every year. One interesting thing is that there are high chances of completing the hike depending on the route you take.
The view of the surrounding landscape from the top of the mountain is amazing, especially at sunrise. It generally takes about 5 or 6 days to hike up to the top of Kilimanjaro and back down. But it solely depends on your acclimatization rate and your level of fitness. You can try out the Kilimanjaro trail if you decide to hike in Africa.
Everest Base Camp Hike, Nepal
One way to describe the Everest Base Camp hike is its ups and downs. The hike is a one-way trail of about 65 kilometers. It spans out from the top of a mountain ridge down to a river and then through another mountain ridge before it finally makes its way to base camp.
It generally takes about 12 to 14 days to hike the Everest Base Camp depending on your level of fitness. Most of the waking through the Base Camp is between 3,500 meters to 4,500 meters. The air at the top is thin. Also, any exertion may seem harder than expected.
Bear in mind that you cannot see the top of Mount Everest from the Base Camp. But it can be seen from several points during the hike without obstruction from other massive mountains. The best time to embark on the hike is when the skies are clear and the temperatures are moderate. This should be around March to May and also September to December.
There are several highlights during the hike. Some of which include the highest hotel in the world (Everest View Hotel), Namchee Bazaar, and the Tengboche Monastery. Accommodation is readily available and comfortable. It is also very easy to find your way on your own or you could use the help of an outfitter.
Samaria Gorge Hike, Greece
The Samaria Gorge hike is one of the best trails on the island of Crete. It also contributes to Crete’s top attractions. The trail is a one-way hike that starts in the pine forest and descends through a narrow valley and ends up in the Libyan Sea. It is a 16 kilometers trail with a drop of more than 1,500 meters.
The start of the hike is quite challenging. For about an hour, you’ll descend a series of switchbacks before getting to the stream responsible for the gorge. Afterward, the trail levels out making the rest journey an easy stroll. The most famous place on the trail is just about halfway through. The place is a small gap where the sheer walls of the gorge are 300 meters high and a few meters apart.
In the long run, you’ll get to a small town called Agia Roumeli. The town has a beach you could use for a refreshing swim. Afterward, grab a cold drink or a snack from the countless shops nearby as you await your ride back to the city.
Inca Trail, Peru
One of life’s greatest experiences is descending from the Inca Trail into Machu at sunrise. The trail is among the longest trails with a distance of about 42 kilometers (26 miles). It also takes you up thousands of foot passes.
The route of the trail is the same one taken by the ancient Inca people over 650 years ago. Interestingly, quite a number of the original stonework are still present to date. You’ll also pass through two tunnels created by the Inca people, several waterfalls, and the ancient ruin of Winay Wayna.
The hike is considerably hard due to several weather conditions. It can be steamy and hot, occasionally cold, blazing sun, and pouring rain. Generally, the hike can be completed in about four days or more. So it is advisable to be prepared for any weather conditions. You could also use the help of some hiking companies as the trail is a popular route.
Milford Track Hike, New Zealand
The Milford Track is a very popular trail in New Zealand. Not just popular, it is also regarded as one of the most amazing hiking trails in the world. The trail has a distance of about 53 kilometers and spans across New Zealand’s South Island. This trail provides some of the finest scenery in the country. The hiking could take up to five days on average. During this time, you’ll come across countless waterfalls, including New Zealand’s highest and Sutherland Falls.
The scenery process you with beautiful meadows, cold and clear alpine lakes, towering mountains, and glaciers. All this is bound to amaze you while you take a walk through the trail each day. You can also get accommodations in a comfortable private lodge or a basic alpine hut. Bear in mind that any accommodation you prefer needs to be booked beforehand.
There are changeable weather conditions in this area of New Zealand. It can get cold and very wet. Each year, the area gets a remarkable 9 meters of rain. So it is advisable to be prepared for the changeable weather conditions if you want to hike on Milford Track.
Cinque Terre Hike, Italy
The Cinque Terre hike is one of the most popular and beautiful hikes in Italy. The trail is easy to tackle as it takes just about a day to complete your hike. It is a trail between villages that rest on the rugged mountains by the seashore. You will forget the stress and effort of hiking at the great view and the sight of the sparkling blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea.
To make your hiking through the Cinque Terre hike, you can start at Monterosso down to Riomaggiore. While hiking, you can stop for a refreshing biscotti and cappuccino and then have a delightful lunch later on.
If La Spezia is where you’re based, you can walk the trail and also head back to your hotel the same day. Before you begin hiking a daily pass is always required. It can be gotten from the ticket booths along the trail. To save yourself some stress, you can just purchase the trail day pass alongside the train ticket.
West Coast Trail, Canada
If you’d love to explore the Pacific Coast, then the West Coast Trail is a perfect place for you. West Coast trail
Is among the most amazing maritime hikes in Canada. It is also regarded as one of the most amazing hiking trails in the world. It is located along Vancouver Island’s coast. The trail covers a distance of about 75 kilometers (46 miles). A long time ago, Ships foundered in the treacherous seas find solace in the West Coast trail. Hiking the west coast usually takes about 6 to 8 days to complete.
The trail also offers a true wilderness experience. One side of the trail is lined with dense rainforest while on the other hand is the deep blue ocean. The West Coast trail offers lots of adventures from wading through fast-flowing rivers to climbing countless ladders with your loaded backpack.
You also have to be fully prepared for changes in weather conditions. You might experience wind, rain, fog, and several other changes in the weather. Also, trail bookings should be purchased quickly as it fills up fast.
Wrap Up – Most Amazing Hiking Trails in the World
Thank you Catalin! That was a great introduction to these amazing hikes! But you have left us all with a dilemma: Do we try to pick one at a time?
Or do we quit our jobs and spend the rest of our lives chasing down these bucket list hikes?
It’s a good conundrum to be in though.
For the rest of us, this is just the beginning of the best hikes in the world. We have covered a bunch of them on our Hiking page.