10 Best Hikes In The World

10 Best Hikes In The World

Here is the list of the best hikes in the world.

Some people who love the outdoors find great appeal in the ease of lacing up a pair of hiking boots and venturing into the uninhabited territory. Hikers are inspired to take on treks and hiking trails all over the world by the crisp, clean air, the solitude, and the stillness of the landscape.

Only on foot can you access some of the world’s most breathtaking vistas. While many of the best treks in the world are multi-day excursions, there are some day hikes that anyone in reasonable physical condition can attempt.

Many different types of terrain are home to well-traveled hiking trails, some of which offer access to historical treasures. Ancient walking paths connect villages in the Himalayas and pass by some of the highest mountains on earth.

Other parts of the world have treks that take you to historic sites, deep canyons, windswept coastlines, or dizzying heights.

Take a look at our ranking of the best hikes in the world for ideas to help you plan your next grand adventure.

10 Best Hikes In The World

1. Inca Trail, Peru

One of life’s great experiences is walking down the Inca Trail into Machu Pichu at sunrise. The 42-kilometer (26-mile) Inca Trail, one of the best hikes in the world, is not for the faint of heart as it ascends over two 13,000-foot passes.

Much of the original stonework from the Incas’ over 650-year-old route is still visible on the trail. Two Inca-built tunnels, Winay Wayna’s ancient ruin, and a number of waterfalls are all along the route.

This challenging hike typically takes four days to complete in erratic weather. It might be sweltering hot, pouring rain, scorching sun, or even occasionally cold. Be ready for any weather scenario. There are numerous hiking organizations to pick from, as this is a well-traveled route.

2. Annapurna Circuit, Nepal

A 17-day, 205-kilometer (108-mile) trek through some of the world’s highest peaks is the Annapurna Circuit trail. The trail begins on the ground in a humid jungle and ascends well above tree line.

At the Thorung Pass, where you’ll reach your highest point of 5,394 meters (17,770 feet), the trail is encircled by a stunning panorama of mountains, all rising to a height of 6,096 meters (20,000 feet).

Poon Hill is another noteworthy feature that can be chosen. The majority of people try to reach the summit before sunrise. Eight of the fourteen highest mountain peaks in the world can be seen from this vantage point.

Annapurna Circuit, one of the best hikes in the world,  requires a high level of physical fitness. Some people may find it difficult to keep going because of the long days and distances, as well as the high elevation.

If you want to make your trip much more enjoyable, you might want to think about hiring porters for your backpack.

The food and lodging along the trail are basic, but what makes the evenings fun are the many different people you meet from all over the world.

The Annapurna Panorama Trek is another shorter trail that still enables you to see some of the highlights. Starting in Pokhara, this three to five-day trek ascends to Ghorepani.

For an unforgettable view, get up to Poon Hill as soon as possible. Both the lodging and the food along this stretch are excellent.

3. Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

One of the most famous places in all of Africa is Kilimanjaro, and many people have the ascent on their bucket list. In actuality, this hike is attempted by about 30,000 people annually. Your chances of finishing the trek depend on your chosen route.

Particularly at sunrise when most hikers attempt to summit, the view across the surrounding landscape is breathtaking from the summit. Depending on your level of fitness and rate of acclimatization, the hike to the top and back down usually takes five to six days.

10 Best Hikes In The World
Hikers at Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. Image from Intrepid Travel.

4. Everest Base Camp, Nepal

The hike to Everest Base Camp (EBC) can probably best be described with the words “up and down”. This 65-kilometer, one-way trail figuratively climbs a mountain ridge, descends to a river, and then ascends yet another mountain ridge to reach base camp.

You will reach your highest point along the hike at 5,500 meters, which typically lasts 12 to 14 days (18,044 feet). However, most of the walking is done between 3,500 and 4,500 meters (11,482 and 14,763 feet) in elevation. Everything seems to be twice as difficult up here because the air is so thin.

Be aware that from Base Camp, you cannot see Mount Everest’s peak. However, when other large mountains are not in the way, you will be able to see it from a number of locations along the trail.

The best times to go on the hike are from March to May and from September to December, when the weather is mild and the skies are clear.

Along the way, attractions worth noting include Namchee Bazaar, the world’s tallest hotel, Everest View, and Tengboche Monastery.

The lodging along the trail is straightforward but cozy and accessible. You can probably find your way along this well-traveled route on your own or, if you’d rather, with the assistance of one of the many outfitters.

5. W Circuit, Torres Del Paine NP, Chile

One of the best hikes in the world is the W Circuit in Torres Del Paine National Park, which is situated in the southernmost part of Chile. This untamed and remote area attracts hikers from all over the world thanks to its craggy rock towers and glacial lakes.

Since the trail and services have improved in recent years, you no longer need to carry your own gear, making the trail more accessible. The hike typically lasts four to six days, and the best months are December to February. For lodging and camping inside the park, reservations are necessary.

Patagonia experiences erratic and variable weather. Be ready for a variety of weather conditions, including sun, snow, wind, and rain.

6. Samaria Gorge, Greece

The Samaria Gorge Hike, one of the best hikes in the world, is one of the island of Crete’s top attractions and the best hike on the island.

This one-way hike begins in pine forests and descends through a constrained valley before coming to rest at the Libyan Sea. Over 1,500 meters will be lost during the roughly 16-kilometer hike.

The steepest portion of the hike is the first hour or so where you must descend a lengthy series of switchbacks before reaching the stream that carved out this magnificent gorge. The trail now levels off, and the final 13 or so kilometers are a stroll-like distance.

The most well-known section of the trail is a narrow gap where the 300-meter-tall sheer walls of the gorge are only a few meters apart as you proceed through the middle of the hike.

You’ll eventually reach the village of Agia Roumeli. This beach’s black sand is ideal for cooling off in the water. Grab a snack or a cold beverage from one of the numerous shops nearby after cooling off while you wait for your boat ride back to civilization.

7. Cinque Terre Hike, Italy

The Cinque Terre hike, one of the best hikes in the world, a short day trip between villages perched on rocky seashore mountains, has long been regarded as one of Italy’s most beautiful hikes. You won’t remember the effort you put in while strolling along this historic route with the Mediterranean Sea below you and its brilliant blue waters.

Monterosso and Riomaggiore are the starting and finishing points for the Cinque Terre hike, respectively.

Take your time, pause for a mid-morning cappuccino and biscotti, continue walking, and then stop for a delightful lunch. When you feel like an afternoon espresso, break yourself away from the view at your lunch location and continue walking.

The trail can be walked and then the train can be taken back to your hotel if you base yourself in La Spezia. You must purchase a daily pass at one of the ticket booths located along the trail in order to walk the trail. A day pass that combines train and trail use is the best option.

8. Milford Track, New Zealand

On New Zealand’s South Island, the Milford Track, one of the best hikes in the world, is a 53-kilometer (33-mile) long, challenging hike that offers some of the most beautiful scenery the nation has to offer.

You’ll pass by countless waterfalls over the course of five days, including Sutherland Falls, which is the highest in New Zealand.

Every day as you walk along, you are amazed by glaciers, imposing mountain peaks, stunning meadows, and cold, clear alpine lakes. Basic alpine huts or more luxurious private lodges are the only options for lodging, and both must be reserved well in advance.

The weather in this part of New Zealand can be very changeable and wet. Amazingly, the region receives nine meters (30 feet) of rain annually.

10 Best Hikes In The World
A hiker at Milford Track, New Zealand. Image from In A Faraway Land.

9. Bright Angel Trail, Grand Canyon NP, USA

A hiking trail that winds its way across a large plain and then drops off again toward the Colorado River can be seen as you look over the Grand Canyon rim. The well-known Bright Angel Trail, one of the best hikes in the world, can be seen in the background.

This 25 km (15.6 mi) long trail descends 1,340 m (4,380 ft) from the south canyon rim to the water’s edge at Phantom Ranch and Bright Angel Campground.

A large portion of the trail can be completed as a day hike thanks to the breathtaking views along the way that span across and down the canyon. If this is your intention, the park service suggests staying within driving distance of Indian Springs.

Watch out for the frequently passing mule trains as you travel along the Bright Angel Trail; it is very well kept and well marked. Both the campground and the lodge at Phantom Ranch require reservations, which must be confirmed two days before the intended arrival date.

The campground is only half full at this time because the Phantom Ranch is closed for a significant infrastructure renewal. The project is expected to be finished in 2023 at some point.

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