Nothing beats getting to know a country on foot. Being close to nature or the local culture allows you to absorb the spirit of the place. Here are five of the top walking and trekking holiday destinations on five continents.
Best undertaken in the autumn when glorious shades of crimson and orange predominate, the USA’s oldest footpath encompasses over 2,200 miles of superb scenery. Here you can explore the mountain ranges of several states, including Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire, populated by deer, elk, moose and black bear.
Particular highlights include the strenuous 89-mile loop of the Franconia Ridge Hike, with its breath-taking views from the summits of Mt. Lafayette and Mt. Lincoln and the spectacular Acadia National Park with its mountain, island and ocean views.
To walk in the footsteps of the magnificent culture that once dominated South America is an enriching experience. Here you can wander beneath snow capped Andean peaks through dramatic valleys and lush forests and happen upon off-the-beaten-track villages where life goes on in its own, traditional and timeless way. You will see the cathedrals, churches and plazas of Cusco, the Sacred Valley, Spanish Colonial architecture and Inca ruins, and age-old burial sites upon steep cliffs. Best of all will be when you approach the Sun Gate and Machu Picchu, the mysteriously abandoned Hidden City in the Clouds.
Serengeti walking safari
For many years walking safaris were forbidden in most parts of the Serengeti National Park, but the Tanzanian government have recently opened up the area for <a href=”http://www.mountainkingdoms.com/inspiration/holidays/adventure-specials“>adventure holidays</a> on foot. Guided tours of this World Heritage Site will enable you to experience the vivid and vibrant soul of Africa. You can walk on the slopes of Mount Meru and in the conservation area of the Ngorongoro Crater, stand amidst the annual migration of tens of thousands of wildebeest and hear the roaring of lions across the plains. Stay in bush camps along the route.
Great Wall Of China
Stretching from the Yellow Sea to the periphery of the Gobi Desert, the 2,700 miles of ramparts and watchtowers of one of the earth’s great man-made wonders were constructed over two thousand years ago to protect the northern frontier of China from marauding Mongol horsemen. This colossal feat of building construction can be mostly traversed on foot as it winds its way across woodland, farmland, hills and mountains. Sights along the way include Beijing and the Forbidden City, the Old Dragon’s Head where the wall meets the sea and the Qing Dynasty’s Imperial Tomb Complex.
Tough, demanding and challenging, but intensely rewarding and picturesquely beautiful, the Pennine Way runs for 268 miles from Edale in the Peak District National Park along the Pennine Ridge, known as the Backbone of England. It crosses the Yorkshire Dales, Northumberland and crosses the Cheviot Hills by way of Hadrian’s Wall, ending in Kirk Yetholm, just inside the Scottish Borders. Some of England’s most isolated landscapes unfold themselves to your view.