Hiking is my hands-down favorite travel activity. There’s just so much that you can see in this world that’s only accessible by foot, over mountaintops, glaciers, and through canyons and gorges.
Over the past five years, these have been my favorite hikes from all around the world. They range in difficulty and length, though they all have one thing in common: They’re stunning.
From Kyrgyzstan to Patagonia, South Africa, the Swiss Alps, the American Southwest, and so many amazing things in-between, here are a few of the best hiking trails in the world.
Coyote Gulch, Utah, USA: Moderately Easy (12km, 7.4 mi)
Coyote Gulch in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument can be done over multiple days or, for those willing to rappel down a canyon wall, in just one day.
In comparison to the more popular hikes in Utah like those in Zion, Coyote Gulch has hardly any people at all. You can camp overnight right under the famous Jacob Hamblin Arch, and wander through all day long without seeing more than a few other people along the way. The hike is fairly easy and flat, though it’s mostly through sand and water, so bring along waterproof hiking boots!
Doi Luang Chiang Dao, Thailand: Moderate (12km, 7.4 mi)
Doi Luang Chiang Dao in northern Thailand is the country’s third tallest peak, but it’s easily the most beautiful. The hike is steep in the beginning and the end, and flat in the middle. It takes you through a temperate jungle, full of interesting vines growing through rocks, sakura blossoms depending on time of year, and up to a peak with 360-degree views of undulating mountain after mountain.I expected this to be a sweaty, buggy affair, but found the hike to be pleasant and even a bit cold. Most people do this hike as an overnight, but it’s possible to do it in one day.