The second half of my list of the best hikes in the world continues where the first post left off. Awesome travel bloggers, incredible hikes and bucketloads of travel inspirartion. Part 2 is all about some of the best hikes in Oceania and The Americas. Don’t forget to check out Part 1 for the best hikes in Europe, Asia and Africa. Let’s go hiking!
52 Best Hikes in the World By Travel Bloggers – Part 2: Oceania, The Americas
27. Cradle Mountain – Australia – by Vita of My Walk in the World
Dove Lake Circuit: Length: 6km – Duration: 2 – 3 hours – Difficulty: Easy
From Dove Lake to Marion Lookout: Duration: 1.5 hours – Difficulty: Moderate (steep & rough at points)
From Dove Lake to Ronny Carpark: Length: 3km boardwalk/gravel path – Duration: 30min – 1 hour – Difficulty: Easy
Known for its iconic craggy peak and deep blue lake, Cradle Mountain National Park is a remote and highly sought after attraction located in Tasmania, Australia. Backpackers fly from all over the world to experience 80 km of the Overland Track. However, you do not to be a multi-day hiker to experience its full beauty. Take the park’s shuttle down to Dove Lake carpark and you’ll see Cradle Mountain across the lake. For your first hike, take the Dove Lake Circuit. This is the best way to get a sense of the size of the lake and enjoy the various fauna and flora. You can then continue to Ronny Creek Track, passing by Lake Lilla and Wombat Pools, until you reach Marion’s Lookout.
You’ll get a stunning view of the mountain peaks, deep blue lakes and the rest of Cradle Mountain National Park features. Afterwards,, take the Lake Lilla Track towards Ronny Creek Carpark. If you’re on the boardwalk around 4pm, make sure to look out for the nocturnal wombats who come out to forage for food at this time.
28. Tongariro Crossing – New Zealand – by Lauren of The Down Lo
Length: 19.4 km – Duration: 6-8 hours – Difficulty: Moderate
Most people think that amazing nature is only found on the South Island. However, just one look at Tongariro Alpine Crossing and you may just change your mind! The oldest national park in the country and a designated tramping track, it’s one of the most popular day hikes in New Zealand. It was the first place in the world to be designated a World Heritage Site for its spiritual and cultural significance to the area’s indigenous people, but it’s the landscape that’ll really wow you as you hike up the craters of active volcanoes, passing icy blue lakes and ancient lava fields.
29. Twin Falls Circuit, Springbrook National Park – Australia – by Toni of 2 Aussie Travellers
Length: 4 km – Duration: 1-2 hours – Difficulty: Easy to moderate (reasonable amount of hill climbs)
The Springbrook National Park is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Gondwana Rainforests of Australia. It’s a stunning area and one of the great ways to experience it is a short hike on the Twin Falls Circuit. Allow yourself a day in the area and include some of the other gorgeous short walks and lookouts in the park. Along the Twin Falls track you’ll pass by four waterfalls, a good size swimming hole, admire the views from stunning lookouts and walk under and through enormous 10 million year old boulders. It’s definitely one you should experience when you’re on Australia’s Gold Coast.
30. Bouddi NP – Australia – by David of Delve Into Australia
Length: 8 km – Duration: 3-4 hours one way – Difficulty: Moderate
The Bouddi National Park lies just across the water from the northernmost point in Sydney, but it’s a world away from Australia’s largest city, a pristine coastal wilderness. Bouddi is on the Central Coast of New South Wales, and its Coastal Walk is one of the best in the country: five miles of steep ascents and descents, a walk across a beautiful deserted beach at Maitland Bay, and some amazing rock platforms and formations along its cliffs. The Bouddi Coastal Walk runs between Putty Beach near Killcare to Macmasters Beach, and as buses are very infrequent many double back. It’s also worth taking a detour for an hour to the Bullimah Spur, which has outstanding views over Maitland Bay and Putty Beach.
31. Kokoda Trail – Papua New Guinea – by Kelly of Trippin’ Turpins
Length: 96km – Duration: 7 days – Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous
The Kokoda Trail, also known as the Kokoda Track, is a gruelling multi day trek in Papua New Guinea. The trail is the location of the battle between Japanese and Australian forces in 1942 World War II. It is a difficult mountain trek, made all the more challenging due to the heat and humidity, the torrential rainfall and extremely cold nights.
There are many trekking packages on offer from various companies. I did mine as a seven day trek with Kokoda Trekking and I cannot fault them. It was a tough trek but so worthwhile! Along the way you learn about the battles fought, visit memorials and experience the local culture. The track reaches a height of 2,190 metres (7,185 ft) and is very steep in places. The best time to do the trek is between April and October.
32. Abel Tasman Coastal Track – New Zealand – by Mags of The Family Freestylers
Length: Full trail – 51km – Duration: 3-5 days – Difficulty: Easy to moderate
The Abel Tasman Coast Track is one of the easiest and most stunning trails in New Zealand. With its white sand beaches, dazzling turquoise water, secluded bays and natural rock pools it’s an extremely popular trail. The trail is closed to vehicles – access is either on foot or by boat. You can walk the whole track in either direction or mix it up by taking one of the many water taxis or kayak between different locations. Stay at one of 4 huts or 19 campsites (needs to be booked in advance). ALL equipment & food need to be carried in. The trail is one way so transport needs to be arranged either side of the trail. There is one compulsory tidal crossing – consult a tide timetable before booking your trip.
33. The Narrows, Zion National Park – USA – by Chris of Amateur Traveller
Length: 15.1 km – Duration: up to 8 hours – Difficulty: Strenuous
One of my favorite hikes in the United States is a wet one. In Zion National Park in Utah there is a classic day hike up the Virgin River to the Narrows. This is an easy hike, but when I say you’re hiking up the river I do mean in the river. You can’t do this hike and stay dry. Outfitters in the area can rent you waterproof boots, neoprene socks, a dry bag and a walking stick. You’re hiking at the bottom of a narrow slot canyon that is sometimes 20 feet across and 2000 feet deep. Do not do this hike without checking the weather because of the risk of flash floods. To hike from the parking lot to the Narrows and back is a good half day hike. You can also do a two day hike from further up the river down to the parking lot.
34. Havasu Falls, Arizona – USA – by Nick & Val of Wandering Wheatleys
Length: 16km each way – Duration: 3 hours there/4-5 hours back. – Difficulty: The hike is downhill the whole way so more challenging when hiking back up in unrelenting Arizona sun. You have the option to hire mules to carry your bags or even fly back up in a helicopter if the going gets tough!
Deep in a canyon in Northern Arizona you’ll find a desert oasis complete with a 100-foot tall turquoise blue waterfall, picture perfect swimming holes, and peaceful campsites nestled along the river below the falls. The beauty of this area has achieved legendary status among hikers in the USA. Only a limited number of people are allowed in the campground each day between March and November and the permits for the entire year are snatched up the first week of February. If you do visit Havasu Falls be sure to continue your hike down the canyon to Mooney Falls where you must climb through tunnels blasted into the steep rock walls and scramble down slippery metal ladders to reach the base of the falls. Keep going another 2 miles you’ll find yet another beautiful cascade known as Beaver Falls.
35. First Peak, Stawamus Chief – Canada – by Greta of Greta’s Travels
Length: 4km round trip – Duration: 2-3 hours – Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous. Very steep in parts
Along the famous Sea to Sky Highway, which connects Vancouver and Whistler you will find Stawamus Chief – a 700m high granite dome that towers over the nearby Howe Sound. Stawamus Chief is divided in three distinct summits, all of which you can hike depending on your fitness level. We only did the First Peak hike, which is advertised as an “intermediate” hike. I consider myself a relatively fit person but have to admit that I found the First Peak quite challenging. The start is the steepest and toughest part, with very tall and slippery steps that you have to walk up alongside a small waterfall. Going further up there are other areas where there are chains and ladders to help you climb up. Once you get to the top though, the view is well worth the hike!
36. Lost Mine Trail – Texas, USA – by Kay of Jetfarer
Length: 6.8 km – Duration: 1.5 hours – Difficulty: Moderate
With some pretty epic views of the Chisos Basin below, the Lost Mine Trail is a gem of a hiking trail in Big Bend National Park, Texas. It’s a fairly steep hike, but the views of Big Bend that greet you at the top are a fantastic reward. The best time of day to hike is at sunset, when the entire landscape below turns golden-red.
37. Top of the Giant Trail – Canada – by Stephanie of The World As I See It
Length: 22 km – Duration: 6 hours – Difficulty: Strenuous
One of the best hikes around the world can be found in northern Ontario, Canada. Located in Thunder Bay’s Sleeping Giant Provincial Park, the Top of the Giant Trail is an epic trail. Talking you past the picturesque Lake Superior, through woodland, and then up a steeping trail that isn’t for the faint of heart. The Top of the Giant Trail will reward you with not one but multiple sweeping views. But the best, at the trail’s end, will have you standing atop one of Ontario’s highest cliffs, over 600 feet above Lake Superior.
38. Proxy Falls – Oregon, USA – by Victoria of Follow Me Away
Length: 8 km round trip loop (but you don’t have to do an entire loop) – Duration: A few hours – Difficulty: Easy to moderate (only moderate part is the steep decline at the end if you want to go to the base of the waterfall)
Proxy Falls is one of the most magical waterfall hikes in Oregon! It is an easy and enjoyable hike through the beautiful Oregon woods. The hike winds through woods and ancient lava fields until you get to the waterfall. Proxy Falls hike allows you to hike to the base of the falls, to the top of the falls, or you can stay on the trail and look at it from middle height. Photos don’t do this hike justice, it is just more beautiful in real life and the waterfall is quite massive! The hike is a loop but you don’t have to do the whole thing! Feel free to walk to the waterfall and go back the same way you came if you don’t want to go the whole eight kilometres.
39. Iceberg Lake – USA – by Lisa of The Hot Flashpacker
Length: 16 km – Duration: A few hours – Difficulty: Moderate
Glacier National Park in the US has many great hikes, but Iceberg Lake is one of the best. This 10-mile, 1200-foot elevation trail is a moderate hike. The first bit is steep but then it levels out with incredible views of mountains and a waterfall on the way to the lake. If you visit too early, the lake is frozen. If you visit too late, it’s just a lake. But it you visit at the right time, you can see the icebergs floating. Make sure you keep your eyes open for wildlife – it’s common to see mountain goats, moose, or bears on this hike.
40. Parker Ridge – Canada – by Teresa of Brogan Abroad
Length: 5.4 km return – Duration: 2.5 hours – Difficulty: Easy
This short trail can be found in the northern area of Banff National Park, just off the Icefields Parkway, and it’s a must do day hike for anyone exploring this part of the Canadian Rockies.
The one mile trail goes all the way uphill, and it’s not particularly remarkable, but it’s when you reach the ridge that unexpectedly the views take your breath away. An enormous valley at your feet, carved by the mighty Saskatchewan Glacier, which can be seen in the distance.
South and Central America
41. Mount Roraima – Venezuela – by Owen of My Turn to Travel
Length: 54 km + 20 km (or more) exploring the summit – Duration: 6-8 days – Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous
The trek to Mount Roraima brings you across the Grand Savanna in Venezuela up to The Lost World, where you’ll find incredible otherworldly landscape, carnivorous plants and unique animals. Sleep in the clouds under overhanging cliffs, or bathe in natural waterfalls as you explore the summit of Mount Roraima – the table top mountain that is shared with 3 countries in South America: Venezuela, Brazil and Guyana.
42. The Circuit, Torres Del Paine National Park – Chile – by Carlos of A Brother Abroad
Length: 109 km – Duration: 6-8 days – Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous (depending on weather)
Torres del Paine National Park is one of the best trekking experiences in South America. Make the most of it by not only doing the popular “W Trek” but also the backside of the park completing “The Circuit” through Chilean backcountry so remote that horses and feet are the only possible modes of transportation. You will be rewarded with views of ice blue glaciers blending blend into the sky, mountains so tall they’re snowcapped year-round, lush forests, and so many other beautiful types of terrain. Book refugios or campsites in advance online
43. Huayhuash Trek – Peru – by Jill of Jack and Jill Travel
Length: 180 km – Duration: 8-14 days – Difficulty: Strenuous
The Huayhuash trek is located in northern Peru and 180 km (112 ml) long. It’s most commonly done as a 10 day trek, but can be done from as short as eight days to as long as 14 days. The trek takes you around the Huayhuash mountain range and involves crossing over eight mountain passes. This is considered a difficult trek because of the altitude with most of the walking be done at over 4000m. Hiring a guide and donkeys is possible from Huaraz, the nearest town. The view is simply spectacular, passing alpine lakes, and forbidding snow-capped peaks. One for the bucket list.
44. Valle de Cocora loop – Colombia – by Kate of Our Escape Clause
Length: 12.4 km – Duration: 5 hours – Difficulty: Moderate
Hiking the Valle de Cocora is the main attraction for travelers coming to Salento, Colombia and as wonderful as the town itself is, it’s easy to see why the Cocora Valley gets all the praise. Home to wax palms (the tallest palm trees in the world!), hiking in the Valle de Cocora is something akin to hiking in Ireland if it was crossed with The Lorax. Though the hike does take you through a beautiful forested area and along a lovely river, the crown jewel is clearly staring down into the incredibly lush valley from the viewpoints positioned above it.
45. Colca Canyon – Peru – by Nate of Unbridled
Length: Cabanaconde to Llahuar Lodge trail is 13km – Duration: 4-6 hours – Difficulty: Easy to moderate
Trekking the Colca Canyon in Peru should be on your adventure bucket list as it is one of the best hikes in the world. I can suggest going at the end of the rainy season (around April) because the valley appears in lush green colors. Observe the huge Andean Condors from the trail and go off the grid to enjoy the tranquility of hiking. You can disappear into the wild from 1-5 days (or even longer if you wish). There are many options for every type of hiker.
46. Fitz Roy, Los Glaciares National Park – Argentina – by Raul of I Live to Travel
Length: Approx 15 km – Duration: 7 hours including stops – Difficulty: Easy to moderate
Fitz Roy is a jagged and iconic peak nestled in Argentina’s side of the Andes in the Los Glaciares National Park along the border with Chile. The hike begins on the Senda El Pilar which follows the Río Blanco for a bit. Along the way, you get great views of mountains and glaciers in the park. The Torre Eléctrica and Marconi Glacier are some of the early sights with Fitz Roy visible further back. There are so many great spots to take pictures of the incredible scenery!
Upon arriving at Poincenot Camp (where latrines can be found!), you leave Senda El Pilar to take Senda Fitz Roy (a little before halfway through the hike) where you can make a fun stop at Capri Lake and jump in! This trail becomes less wooded as you go and returns you right back into town!
47. Isla del Sol – Bolivia – by David of Travelsewhere
Length: 8 km – Duration: 3 hours – Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous
For a change in scenery in South America, consider hiking across Isla del Sol, a Bolivian island on Lake Titicaca. A ferry ride from Copacabana, this island is home to quiet, rural villages but also sparse, rocky terrain sprinkled with Incan ruins. Whether on a day trip or staying on the island, you can hike the Willa Thaki route, from the northern village of Cha’llapampa across the island to southern Yumani. It’s worth noting that sections of the trail are above 4000m in altitude, so while the hike isn’t technical, altitude makes it moderately difficult.
48. Metropolitan Park – Panama – by Jenn of By Land and Sea
Length: Various – Duration: Various – Difficulty: Easy
Panama City’s Metropolitan Park is the only protected area located within city limits in all of Central America. Not only does this park allow a great change from the fast pace of the city surrounding it, it’s a great place to hike and spot wildlife. While hiking throughout the area, lucky visitors will get to spot adorable sloths in the tree tops as well as many animals ranging from leaf-cutters to birds. There are a variety of trails here, ranging from easy to more strenuous. The visitor’s center gives great advice on the trails (the park admission fee of $4 USD can be paid here too). We loved our time here and found it to be a quiet and serene place in the middle of a bustling city.
49. Los Nevados National Park – Colombia – by Thomas of TomPlanMyTrip
Length: 50 km – Duration: 3-5 days – Difficulty: Strenuous
50. Puerte Vallarta – Mexico – by Sarah of Live, Dream, Discover
Duration: 2.5 hours one way (without beach breaks) – Difficulty: Moderate (some narrow sections and scrambling required in spots)
Hiking is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico but there is actually a wonderful hike just outside of town that should not be missed. The trail starts at the tiny town of Boca de Tomatlan, which you can bus to, and finishes at lovely Las Animas beach. In between you will walk along coastal paths, trek through wooded trails and take breaks on secluded beaches. At the end you are rewarded with ice cold cerveza, fresh coconuts and seafood before taking a short boat ride back to Puerto Vallarta.
51. Lençóis Maranhenses Desert – Brazil – by Gabor of Surfing The Planet
Length: 30 km – Duration: From Atins to Baixa Grande Oasis and return 2 days (count hiking 7-8 hours each day) – Difficulty: Strenuous especially because of heat and lack of shadow
One of the most special treks in the world can be done in the Lençóis Maranhenses National Park in the Northern Coast of Brazil. The multi-day hike takes you through sand dunes, which have fresh water lagoons amongst them in the rainy season. You can enjoy taking a bath in the lagoons – great for dealing with the heat. A guide is needed to avoid getting lost between the sand dunes, an ever-changing landscape, and you can sleep in a small oasis in the middle of the desert, where just a few families live.
52. The Appalachian Trail – USA – by Rob & Ann of TravelLatte
Length: 3500 km – Duration: from day trips up to seven months for entire trail – Difficulty: Easy to strenuous
The Appalachian Trail is one of three ultra-long-distance hikes across the United States. We haven’t hiked all of its 2,200 miles stretching from Georgia to Maine, but it’s safe to say there’s a hike in there for everybody! Our favourite section is in New Hampshire’s White Mountains National Forest, where the trail climbs to its highest point at Mount Washington (6,288 feet/1,917 meters). For the truly committed, 17 of the state’s 4,000-footers lie along this trail! If not hiking through, the AMC Highland Center is an excellent base for exploring the beautiful Presidential Range and the colorful Kancamagus Scenic Byway.
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