Best Backpacking Trips in the World
Some holiday-goers want to challenge themselves both physically and mentally. Backpacking has become an old tradition made new within the last 10 years; from high-profiled celebrities climbing mountains to blockbuster movies reliving the past. One thing still rings true, and that is backpacking can take you to some of the most remote and stunning landscapes on earth. From the bottom of the world in New Zealand to the Norwegian Fjords, people have been hiking and climbing since the beginning of time. Maybe not to beat a record or brag about their feats, but merely to go where no one else has been. Here are some of the best backpacking trips in the world:
The Great Walk-Milford Track, New Zealand
New Zealand is home to several Great Walks; some cross over volcanoes, others over snow-capped mountains, and others are on a completely different island where you can search for the exclusive Kiwi bird. But no other walk has broken the hearts like that of the Milford Track. Covering 53.5 kilometres over three days, this one-way track is one of the most stunning trails in the country. Hikers stay in huts and because it is located in a national reserve only a certain amount of people can be on the trail at once. Don’t wait around; this trail is usually booked out nine months in advance.
Everest Base Camp, Nepal
The hike to Everest Base Camp is one of the most unforgettable and incredible journeys you could ever take. But it’s definitely not for the unfit or faint-hearted. Trekking through the Himalayas, allow you get to experience jaw-dropping scenery every step of the way. All hikers who want to hike up to Base Camp (5,554 m) and beyond must go with a guide and Sherpa. From Kathmandu to Base Camp takes anywhere from two weeks to 19 days. This spiritual and mentally-driven hikes not only allows you to see the most stunning landscapes known to man, it gives you the bragging rights that most of the world will never get. Everest is the hardest and moodiest mountain in the world and conditions change every minute. It’s a challenge that hard core backpackers all strive to complete.
Torres Del Paine, Chile
The most popular national park in Chile, the Torres Del Paine has a fantastic mix of mountains, lakes, glaciers and scenery that only belongs in your dreams. Thousands visit the Chilean Patagonia region each year to hike in the park, whether it be a one-day hike or the complete the entire loop in nine days. Highlights of this trek include the French Valley, a picturesque region just below the southern Andes. Voted in the top 5 most beautiful places in the world, the Torres Del Paine may be at the bottom of the world, but it’s definitely worth visiting.
Machu Picchu, Peru
The lost city of the Incas is one of the wonders of the world, and for good reason. Nestled at 2,430 metres, Machu Picchu is a true architectural masterpiece high in the sky. Those who love history and hiking will love the combination this massive four-day hike brings. Many stay in Cuzco for a few days to acclimate to the high elevation before they start their ascent to the historic landmark. From photos alone, you can see why this place is so magical and so popular.
Tour du Mont Blanc, Europe
The Tour du Mont Blanc is over 170 kilometers long, and is one of the most popular long-distance hikes in the world. Passing through France, Switzerland and Italy, the TMB passes through the high mountains in each country. Many take their time to traverse the entire trail in one go, while others take it in small amounts. It’s popular because of the unforgettable scenery and the easiness of navigating the trail. There’s plenty of accommodation along the way and the trail is clearly marked. Don’t be misguided though, it’s highest point is at 2,665 metres and experience mountain hiking is highly recommended.
Pacific Crest Trail, West Coast, United States
The ‘PCT’ is one of the most dramatic and lengthy trails in the world. Spanning the length of the entire West Coast of the United States, the Pacific Crest Trail starts at the California/Mexico border and makes it’s way up to Canada; crossing over the Sierra Nevada mountain range, this diverse hike is not for the faint hearted. Many take this hike in strides, only doing one state or even just one weekend to hike the trail. You might know this trail from the mega-famous movie Wild starring Reese Witherspoon. The trail has now become one of the most popular destinations in the U.S.
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