If you’re an adventurer at heart, there’s no better way to see the world than through trekking. Trekking allows you to walk on foot through beautiful and exotic destinations that are inaccessible by car or plane, offering you an up-close look at the natural beauty and cultural heritage of these amazing places. Most trekking tours include accommodations, meals, guides, and other services, but what exactly should you expect when signing up for one? Here are the top 10 destinations on the planet for adventure trekkers.
Everest Chola Pass Trek, Nepal
Everest Chola Pass Trek is a 2-3 weeks adventure with 16-17 days of actual walking. It’s considered to be one of the top 10 adventure trekking destinations in the world. The route is long and demanding, but it offers stunning views along the world’s 4 tallest mountains from one viewpoint called Gokyo Ri. As you trek through remote passes at elevations around 5,400 meters, you’ll experience some of Nepal’s most spectacular mountain scenery and its ethnic mixed Sherpa and Tibetan culture. You’ll also cross an ice pass that sits 5,364 meters above sea level—that’s just equal to the altitude of Mount Everest’s Base Camp.
Corsica’s GR20, France
If you’re looking for a highly challenging trekking experience, then look no further than Corsica’s GR20. The nearly 200 kilometers long trail takes intrepid adventurers along beautiful paths and some of Europe’s highest peaks. It’s one of those trails that will bring you out of your comfort zone (in a good way), push you to new limits, and leave you with amazing memories—not to mention bragging rights. If climbing mountains isn’t your thing, then hike along Corsica’s gorgeous coastline. It doesn’t matter whether your goal is professional photography or just getting away from it all, Corsica is an excellent destination for adventure trekkers and explorers alike.
Inca Trail, Peru
The Inca Trail, which spans 50 miles across rugged and unpredictable terrain, is an adventure trekker’s dream. While trekking and exploring Machu Picchu may seem like it would require athletic abilities, that isn’t necessarily true: The Incas developed a network of trails that are easily passable by tourists. However, visitors should be prepared for steep slopes and high altitudes. The worse point is it’s always crowded due to its popularity with more than one million people visiting each year. It is more than any other UNESCO site—the trail can get crowded at certain times of the day. If you want more elbow room on your trek (or some more time in general), consider visiting outside of peak season, which runs from May through September.
Kilimanjaro Trek, Tanzania
The adventure trekking capital of Africa, Tanzania is home to two of its tallest peaks: Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Meru. To climb Mt. Kilimanjaro (which stands at 5,895 meters), you’ll need at least 4 days, depending on your fitness level and whether or not you want to trek with a guide. In addition to hiking up a volcano (the highest freestanding mountain in the world), there are also activities like sandboarding, camel safaris, and ziplining available here if you have time to spare. There are many lodges along the trail that offer showers, meals, guides, and porters for an additional fee as well as equipment rentals for those who don’t bring their own equipment from home.
Manaslu Circuit Trek, Nepal
The Manaslu Circuit Trek is considered one of Nepal’s most famous treks and an absolute must for trekking enthusiasts. It is also one of only a few treks that have been awarded a Nepal Mountain Treks (NMT) Quality Certificate, meaning it adheres to a strict standard on matters such as safety, medical facilities, amenities, and hospitality at lodges. The circuit itself boasts some of Nepal’s most spectacular views and abundant wildlife. Highlights include emerald-green rice terraces and stunning alpine landscapes dotted with several Gompas (Buddhist monasteries). It takes around 6–8 days to complete depending on your pace.
Annapurna Circuit Trek, Nepal
Nepal’s Annapurna Circuit Trek is said to be one of the most beautiful treks in the world. It takes you through some of Nepal’s most stunning natural landscapes, including pine forests, and past 12 peaks higher than 7,000 meters. The route also passes through different climate zones and up to 27 villages along its way. It is rated as one of the world’s top 10 destinations for adventure trekkers. With little more than your own two feet to help you through it all, the full hike should take no less than ten days — if not longer.
Gran Paradiso National Park, Italy
To make your way through Gran Paradiso National Park, you must set out on foot—and by foot, we mean walking stick. With trails reaching up to 3,000 meters above sea level, trekking is not for those who are afraid of heights (or thin air). But a rise in altitude is just one of many reasons that the Gran Paradiso should be top-listed on any adventurous traveler’s bucket list. This park is home to glaciers and snow-covered peaks as well as thriving wildlife including brown bears and chamois. Don’t forget to look up: You might just see a golden eagle overhead!
Markha Valley Trek, India
Markha Valley Trek lies in the heart of the Himalayas, close to both Pakistan and China, it is located at an altitude of 11000 ft above sea level. The valley is famous for its lush green meadows, snow-capped mountains, and colorful ethnic culture. The trekking route from Sankoo to Kugti Pass has been designed in such a way that it covers all the major highlights of this region and it passes through multiple villages inhabited by different tribes.
Located in a state known as Jammu and Kashmir, the Markha Valley trek was created for adventurous spirits who don’t mind getting off the beaten track. It’s about 6- 7 days long and covers more than 60 kilometers). Although it’s not technically off-limits, you must get permission from army officials to embark on it. Otherwise, an armed police escort will accompany you throughout your trek. The terrain is steep and often rocky, making it challenging—and dangerous—to walk through. Since there are no permanent settlements or roads along its path, only local guides with great knowledge of both mountain and plant life know how to navigate it safely.
Torres del Paine National Park, Chile
Among one of the most beautiful national parks in South America, Torres del Paine is a wondrous destination for adventure trekkers and outdoor enthusiasts, including hiking, horseback riding, climbing, and kayaking. This spectacular Chilean park is well-known for its famous granite towers known as Torres (towers) that reach up to 3,000 feet high. The well-maintained trails will lead you through valleys, glacial rivers, and mountainous terrain with plenty of wildlife spotting opportunities as well! After your day’s trekking, you can enjoy fine dining at affordable prices or indulge at one of Chile’s best hotels located nearby within Bariloche or Puerto Natales city limits.
For many, trekking is an opportunity to unplug from technology and enjoy nature’s majestic beauty. Unsurprisingly, then, it should come as no surprise that Sweden’s Kungsleden Trail earns a spot on our list of top adventure trekkers destinations. The trail follows Sweden’s Scandinavian Mountains for approximately 400 kilometers and crosses through some of Sweden’s most stunning scenery and wildlife habitats. You can walk or ski along mountains, lakes, and forests or any combination thereof during your trek down Kungsleden Trail. If you’re looking for breathtaking natural views in one of Europe’s best-kept secrets, look no further than Sweden’s Kungsleden Trail.
The world has become a smaller place, with many people venturing out on their own and experiencing life outside of their comfort zones. Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, backpacking can be a worthwhile (and memorable) experience. As we look over our list of top adventure trekkers destinations, you’ll see that there are many things to consider when planning your trip: What are your interests? How much money do you have to spend? What type of terrain can you tolerate? Answering these questions will help get you started in making travel plans that fit both your preferences and budget.