The Best Long Treks for Hikers Around the World

Annapurna Circuit Trail, Manang
Photo by Neha Maheen Mahfin on Unsplash

Hiking can be a great addition to any vacation itinerary, but what about when the purpose of the trip is the hike itself? For athletic and adventurous travelers alike, long-distance trails offer a unique opportunity for exploration and disconnection from the stressors of everyday life. While it’s true that long-distance hikes are likely to include plenty of obstacles of their own, they can also be incredibly rewarding. If you’re a distance hiker looking for your next challenge, read on to learn more about some of the world’s best trails. 

The Appalachian Trail

It turns out the notorious computer game we all loved as kids is named after a real-life long-distance trail in the Eastern United States. Spanning approximately 2,190 miles, the Appalachian Trail offers hikers the opportunity to explore a diverse range of ecosystems as they move from the forests of the South to the rocky terrain of New England. This trail is both challenging and highly rewarding, taking most hikers between 5 to 7 months to complete. 

Annapurna Circuit

For those in search of a bit more elevation, the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal stands out as a picturesque journey through some of the world’s highest peaks. At a height of 33,159 ft and a length of 145 miles, the trail circumnavigates the Annapurna Massif in the Himalayas, offering hikers postcard-worthy views of alpine landscapes and traditional villages along the way. On average, the trail takes about 2-3 weeks to complete depending on skill level and the specific route travelers choose to take.

Te Araroa Trail

Literally translated as “The Long Path”, New Zealand’s Te Araroa Trail offers adventure enthusiasts the chance to take in a diverse array of the country’s natural wonders through one 1,800-mile trek. The trail was officially opened in 2011 and consists of a series of tracks and walkways that connect New Zealand’s North and South Islands. Most hikers will require about 4-5 months to complete the trail, with October to November recommended as the best times to start.