Walking is an activity that everyone can enjoy, whether you like a gentle stroll or an arduous mountain climb. If you’re up for something more challenging, take in some stunning scenery with our list of spectacular walks from all corners of the globe:
1. The Haute Route, France (Chamonix) – Switzerland (Zermatt)
Reaching altitudes of nearly 3000m, this is the ultimate alpine walk. Achievable either in summer or on skis in winter, you will traverse ten out of twelve of the highest peaks in the Alps, regularly crossing high passes. A strong level of fitness is demanded to tackle the steep ascents but you will also meander through alpine valleys and picturesque villages. Self-navigation is possible the whole way, but if you want the security of a guide many good alpine specialists can guide you.
2. The Inca Trail, Peru
The most famous trek in South America combines mountain scenery, the spectacular Inca ruins and tropical jungle in just 26 miles. It is best to hike this 4 day trail between April and October since the weather is drier, but you will still site the snow-tipped mountains of Machu Picchu when altitudes of 4200m are reached. Find out more about a potential itinerary here.
3. Everest Base Camp, Nepal
This will be a once-in-a-lifetime, humbling experience as you trek towards the world’s highest mountain at 8,848m, surrounded by other giants. You’ll reach heights of 5,550m on this typically 3-week adventure as you’re guided by a Sherpa. You can find many adventure based companies who offer comprehensive packages for the expedition, the best of which we’ve found to be Jagged Globe.
4. Indian Himalayas, India
To venture to the less frequented side of the world’s most powerful mountain range opens up realms of possibility for the more determined of hikers. Often bleak and isolated and only punctuated by a few settlements, those who fancy a challenge can embark on a 24 day epic trek from Spiti to Ladakh.
5. GR20, France/Corsica
Although the altitudes of this trek are not as dizzying as some of the others, it is considered to be the toughest in Europe and one of the most beautiful as you traverse Corsica diagonally from north to south, passing glacial lakes, rolling valleys and snow-capped peaks over 180km. Similar to the Haute Route, you can tackle the GR20 alone but there are several options for guided trips.
6. K2, Pakistan
This 15 day trek is not for the faint-hearted but it is also incredibly rewarding with unbeatable scenery and an awe-inspiring proximity to one of the world’s second highest mountain, K2, which stands at 8,611m. You can adjust to the altitude while following icy rivers before approaching the pyramidal mountains where you’ll walk to nearly 4,800m. Jagged Globe are renowned for their exceptional trips: www.jagged-globe.co.uk/trek/i/silk+route+k2.html .