Add a dose of luxury when you next limber up with The Wordrobe’s pick of the globe’s most beautiful hiking destinations
These boots were made for hiking in. Taking on trails has never been more popular, with recent studies on adventure tourism revealing that hiking has become the number one most enjoyed activity for active travellers.
From Iceland’s mesmerising wilderness to Saint Lucia’s idyllic islands, here’s where to find the world’s most awe-inspiring trails (and where to stay in style, too).
1 Epirus, Greece
About the hike: A wild and rugged landscape, the plunging Gorge of Vikos and enchanting Towers of Astraka are punctuated by the crystal clear Voidomatis River. These provide an ideal backdrop for a host of outdoor pursuits, including rafting through wold waters, cannoning, horse-riding and mountain biking.
Hardly on the tourist radar, Zagori is currently under consideration for the UNESCO world heritage list and is also home to The Zagori Mountain Run, sponsored by outdoor adventure brand ‘North Face’.
Where to stay: Aristi Mountain Resort & Villas, Greece
Situated in west Zagori, Epirus in north-western Greece, Aristi Mountain Resort & Villas is the ultimate luxurious accommodation for adventure seekers.
A hidden gem and member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World and Zagori Excellence Network (ZEN), Aristi Mountain Resort & Villas also boasts three new 2-storey villas in addition to 24 chic rooms and suites.
Rooms from £115 per night. Visit www.aristi.eu/en to find out more and make a booking.
2 Saint Lucia, Caribbean
About the hike: Beautiful flora, stunning island scenery and a heat that keeps sun seekers coming back for more. Hikes in Saint Lucia are some of the world’s most beautiful – with 238 square miles of exotic trails to enjoy.
Where to stay: Marigot Bay Resort & Marina
Home to Saint Lucia’s most desirable marina, Marigot Bay Resort & Marina is the perfect setting for a luxurious winter sun getaway in the Caribbean. With two infinity pools, a swim-up bar, a Rum Cave, and a variety of beautifully designed Guest Rooms and Suites, Marigot Bay Resort & Marina attracts visitors from all over the world.
Offering outstanding Calypso hospitality with lavish accommodation, it’s no surprise that American Novelist James Michener described Marigot as “the most beautiful Bay in the Caribbean.”
Stay here to try an array of adventure activities – including hiking up the Pitons 2,619 feet above sea level, exploring the island’s largest rainforest and discovering St Lucia’s exotic wildlife by land and by sea.
Rooms from £274 per night. Visit www.marigotbayresort.com to find out more and make a reservation.
3 Utah, USA
About the hike: Where to begin? From Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef and Zion, which make up Utah’s ‘Mighty Five®’ National Parks, to its nine million acres of national forest, the Beehive State is jam-packed with thousands of miles of great hiking trails that are waiting to be explored.
From ancient caves and impressive summits to distinctive landmarks, there’s plenty of adventures awaiting throughout this canyon-clad state.
Where to stay: Sundance Mountain Resort
Rustic, elegant and handmade are some of the words that capture the feeling of Sundance Mountain Resort. Owned by Robert Redford, this five-star mountain retreat’s accommodation is astonishingly good.
Don’t worry, gourmands, as the dining experience in the spectacular Tree Room Restaurant is just as impressive, providing an all-round luxury stay for hikers. Complete the first-class stay with a visit to the resort’s on-site spa for a range of massage and body treatments to soothe any aches and pains from the day’s adventure. One word – bliss.
Rooms from £444 per night. Visit sundanceresort.com to find out more and make a reservation.
4 Faroe Islands, Denmark
About the hike: More suited for the experienced explorers, the Faroe Islands provide a backdrop of exceptional scenery and challenging mountainous terrain. With awe-inspiring peaks in one direction and dishevelled ocean in the other, this destination is perfect for a rural trail, with emerald moorlands, traditional villages and seabird colonies.
Where to stay: Gásadalsgarður Guesthouse
If it’s a taste of authentic village life you’re after, look no further than Gásadalsgarður Guesthouse, a modern but boutique hideaway nestled in the pretty surrounds of Gásadalsgarður. With four rooms, some of which overlook the tempestuous Atlantic Ocean, this new-build property is surrounded by a landscape worth gaping at – and the beds are pretty comfy too.
Rooms from £117 per night. To find out more and make a booking, please click here.
5 Everest Base Camp, Nepal
About the hike: July 2019 marks what would have been the 100th birthday of Edmund Hillary, mountaineer and explorer, who left an indelible mark on the world when he became the first man to climb Mt Everest.
Explorers follow in Hillary’s footsteps with this new photographic expedition to Everest Base Camp. After arriving in Kathmandu and spending a day exploring the city’s bazaars and temples, with opportunities for close-up photography, guests take an exhilarating flight over the Himalayas to Lukla where they meet their porters and local guide.
From here, the route first heads to the Sherpa capital of Namche Bazaar, its market stalls, dramatic ridge walks and breath-taking views make it an ideal spot to rest and acclimatise, and then to the village of Kunde where Hillary himself built a school in the 1960s.
Beyond Kunde, the trail traverses ever steeper hillsides, and the walking becomes increasingly exhilarating, staying in remote lodges along the way and visit hauntingly beautiful Buddhist monasteries.
The ultimate destinations are Everest Base Camp (5300m) and Kala Pattar (5554m) the famous vantage point with magnificent close up views of the Khumbu icefall and the SW face of Everest.
Led by Stuart Holmes, an adventure and outdoor photographer with over 20 years’ experience who summited Everest in 2005, this adventure is perfect for thrill-seekers with a creative streak.
Prices from £2,450pp sharing, including 15 nights’ accommodation, all meals, local guiding, photography tuition, trek permits, international airport transfers and internal flights. Departs 26 April 2019, visit wildphotographyholidays.com to find out more and make a booking.
6 Patagonia, Argentina
About the hike: It’s almost like Mother Nature created Patagonia with hikers in mind. The weather may be crazy, the region ultra remote, and the trails rough – but it’s worth every shaky step. One of the most impressive landscapes, the endless glaciers, waterfalls, mountains and black rocks provide enough wanderlust for several decades.
Where to stay: The Singular Patagonia Hotel
Nestled on the shores of Señoret Channel and overlooked by a soaring collection of mountains, this luxe hotel (which was once a former historic warehouse) is perched at the entrance to Torres del Paine national park and is a mere 5km from Museo Histórico Municipal.
Sleek and minimalist rooms include floor-to-ceiling windows with sound and mountain views, as well as free Wi-Fi, satellite TV and minibars. With all that hiking, you’ll work up an appetite – breakfast is included, and there’s a duo of chic fine dining restaurants to try. Don’t miss a visit to the cool lounge bar either – or the spa with its heated pool and sauna too.
Prices from £322 per night. Find out more and make a reservation via thesingular.com.
7 Fljót Valley, Iceland
About the hike: Escape from the outside world and head to Iceland for hikes in the remote region of Fljót Valley with lakes, rivers and mountains galore. Located in the mountainous Troll Peninsula in northern Iceland, head here in summer for a walk amongst wilderness. It’s just you, your hiking boots and Iceland’s fierce landscape.
Where to stay: Deplar Farm
Isolated luxury awaits at Deplar Farm. Once a sheep farm, today the animals have been replaced with world-class comfort. Home to 13 rooms, all of which boast a contemporary Nordic style and impeccable design, enjoy the minimalistic surrounds which offer incredible views of the outside Icelandic terrain.
Meals here are designed to recharge you after your exhilarating adventures while bringing the surrounding nature to your plate. Fresh produce is provided by local farmers and ingredients are locally-sourced, resulting in a contemporary Icelandic cuisine that celebrates the natural resources of the country.
As well as hiking, guests can try their hand at fly fishing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing or tubing. During the summer, try out sea kayaking or mountain biking.
Rooms from £3,355 per night. Click here to find out more or make a booking.
8 Runyon Canyon, Los Angeles
About the hike: It may not be the most strenuous, but hiking Runyon Canyon is perfect for a dose of celebrity spotting. Take the 2.65 mile trail to see the famed Hollywood sign from above, as well as the chance of encountering real stars themselves.
Make it to the top to marvel at sweeping views across Downtown LA and Hollywood – it may be a little cheesy, but boy is it beautiful.
Where to stay: The Beverly Hills Hotel
Check into the ultimate beacon of glamour, The Beverly Hills Hotel. Guest rooms and suites in the main house embody LA’s sparkling elegance while the bungalows draw inspiration from the lush surrounding landscape for an effortless and modern Californian design. Don’t miss out on a meal at the Polo Lounge for a snack of the suaveness kind, either.
Rooms from £541 per night. Click here to find out more or make a booking.
About the hike: One of Spain’s beautiful Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean, Mallorca is known across the globe for its sheltered coves, limestone mountains and Roman and Moorish remains. Catch the next flight to see it for yourself and enjoy the coastal beauty at your own leisure.
Where to stay: Son Bunyola
Son Bunyola is tucked away within the stunning mountainous landscape, making it an ideal choice for trekking expeditions. When not scaling the mountains, stroll around the estate which is almost 700 acres in size, or take the coastal path to the nearby picturesque towns of Banyabalfur or Valdemossa.
Comprised of three villas, each property has their own unique style and character. Choose from Sa Terra Rotja with 4 bedrooms, Sa Punta de S’Aguila with 5 bedrooms and the new villa Son Balagueret with 4 bedrooms, all of which can all be hired exclusively.
To find out more and make a booking, please click here.