9 Of The Most Stunningly Beautiful Long Distance Hikes in the World

1. The Appalachian Trail, United States
Charlies Bunion

Appalachian Trail

Appalachian Trail

Arguably most famous long haul trek in the world, the Appalachian Trail winds 2,185 miles from Georgia to Maine, passing through 14 states,  2 national parks, and 8 national forests along the way.  Make sure to set aside some time if you plan on doing the whole thing – for most people it take about 6 months from start to finish. And it’s no easy task; by completing the whole trail you’ve climbed as much elevation as hiking Everest 16 times. If you complete the hike, however, you’ll in in elite company.  Only 1 in 4 who set out finish.

2. West Highland Way, Scotland
West Highland Way

West Highland Way

'Highland Stars' - Buachaille Etive Mor

The West Highland Way is a 96 mile long footpath connecting the cities of Milngavie and Fort William in the Scottish Highlands. It’s an incredibly varied path, and all hikers will be rewarded with stunning views throughout its entire length. Many hikers choose to top off the hike by climbing Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in the U.K.

3. The Milford Track, New Zealand
MacKinnon Pass - Milford Track

Milford Track

Milford Track

The Milford Track is commonly cited by many hiking aficionados as the “finest walk in the world”. Because you are required to obtain a permit before attempting the track, approval from the New Zealand government can take months. The track takes between 4-6 days for most people to complete, but at the end of it it will seem like something far shorter.  It’s a magical journey through one of the most geographically diverse countries on Earth.

4. Camino De Santiago, Spain
Camino de Santiago.etapa 1: S. Jean Pied de Port - Roncesvalles.

Hacia Artieda. Camino de Santiago. Camino aragonés. 4a etapa.

Saint Jean de Pied de Port
Tens of thousands of individuals set out every year to complete this ancient 500 mile pilgrimage through Spain. It’s described by many as a deeply spiritual experience, a chance to get away from their lives back home and regroup.

5. Great Himalaya Trail, Nepal
Travel Photography | Sarangkot Pokhara | Nepal Himalaya

Limi Valley

Talung / Nyalu La, Limi Valley

Covering over 1000 miles through the High Himilayas, the Great Himalaya trail is no joke.  The most experienced of trekkers can finish the hike in about 4 months, with the average around 6.  If you want to hike the Himalayas but find the thought of traversing 20,000 ft tall passes hard to stomach, consider hiking the Green Route, a parallel lower version of the GHT.

6. Santa Cruz Trek, Peru
Le Trek de Santa Cruz

Rosa

Punta Union

For those looking to get their fix of high altitude hiking in South America, look no further than the Santa Cruz Trek. Perfect for anyone looking to get away from the insane bustle of tourism on the Inca Trail, the SCT will provide incredible views and an intense feeling of solitude. Make sure that you are in great shape before going – the trail peaks at 20,000 feet at its highest point.

7. The Pindos Traverse (Greece)
DSC_4083

Cyclades  939

Star trails over Meteora

This trail stretches 180 miles across Greece to the border with Albania. It crosses beautiful low plains, high mountain passes, and various small villages along the way. It’s famed for it’s natural beauty, particularly the abundance of wildflowers that grow along the route. It’s a lesser known journey through the heart of old Greece that will leave you wishing for more.

8. The Snowman Trek (Bhutan)
2009-10-20 (09) Gangkhar Puensum (7570m)

2009-10-19 (28)  Lunana (Pho Chhu) Valley. Chozo Dzong

2009-10-18 (12) Green Lake below Keche La

This 30 day hike will take you through some of the most remote and interesting terrain on Earth. Interspersed with small villages and Buddhist temples, it’s a wonderful way to not only experience the natural beauty of Bhutan, but to also learn about the unique nature of Buddhist culture in this small Asian country.

9. Paine Circuit Trek (Chile)
hiking the Paine Circuit

Start of the W Circuit Trek

DSC_0313

Anyone who completes the 6 day trek through Patagonia will be rewarded with views of a lifetime.  The 75 mile hike will bring you into close contact with icy blue lakes, glaciers, massive snow capped mountains, and lush forests. For those willing to carry the extra weight, a nice camera is a must have.

 

 

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