Prepare your hiking boots and have your sunscreen handy! We will be sharing here 8 of the best treks you must try. The list comes with complete info from National Geographic Adventure on when is the best month to go and how many days it will take to complete the hike. So here it is, in no particular order. Have fun and enjoy your hike!
1. Grand Canyon Hike, Arizona
Rim to Rim to Rim
Round-Trip: 44 miles, 4 to 6 days
When to Go: Everybody does this hike in September to October or April to May, so go in March or November for a more contemplative experience.
Any walk in the Grand Canyon is going to rate pretty high on the Richter scale of hikes, but this route shows you both rims and the river, offers different trails in and out, and gives you enough time within one of the greatest features on Earth to actually savor the majesty of the natural architecture. Time travel through the multicolored layer cake of the Colorado Plateau for two billion years’ worth of geology, from the Kaibab limestone at the rim to the Vishnu complex at the river, all on good “corridor” trails with known water sources and pleasant camps.
Insider Tip: Bomb down from the South Rim via the uber-direct South Kaibab Trail to cross the Colorado River on the Black Bridge and camp at Bright Angel camp. Then ascend through the Box, the inner heart of the canyon, up to Cottonwood Camp and the remote North Rim. On the return trek, cross the Colorado on the Silver Bridge and ascend to the South Rim through Indian Garden via the Bright Angel Trail, better suited for uphill travel.
2. Fitz Roy Trek, Patagonia, Argentina
El Chaltén to Laguna Torre to Poincenot Camp to Laguna Eléctrico
Round-Trip: 36 miles, 4 to 7 days
When to Go: February to March to avoid the crowds of midsummer and enjoy stable fall weather when the infamous Patagonian winds abate
Hike among Argentina’s fabled Fitz Roy Massif, the iconic ridge where the peaks of Poincenot, St. Exupery, and 11,073-foot Fitz Roy itself rise out of the steppes of Patagonia like a vision. This grand tour gives you three views of Fitz at sunrise, with Cerro Torre and Marconi Pass thrown in for good measure. This ramble through Delaware-size Los Glaciares National Park takes you from gnarled, spooky beech forests and open plains to glaciers, roaring waterfalls, and granite monoliths afire with orange dawn light.
Insider Tip: From Camp Poincenot, hike up in the predawn hours to Laguna de los Tres by headlamp for the full impact of sunrise on the Fitz Roy Massif.
3. Petra Through the Back Door, Jordan
Dana Reserve to Petra
Round-Trip: 50 miles, 7 days
When to Go: October through April, when desert temperatures relent—a little. Go with Adventure Jordan, the local company that discovered this 50-mile route through the deserts, mountains, and peaks of Jordan.
At the top of an ancient stairway carved into the red rock, the narrow defile leads around a sharp bend, and suddenly you are stopped cold. There stands the exquisite carved façade of Al Deir, better known as the Monastery, perhaps Petra’s grandest monument. And you have it to yourself. To enter the Nabataean city of Petra in a small party at the conclusion of almost a week in the rugged wilds of the Kingdom of Jordan is a far more satisfying arrival than pulling into the parking lot with its idling tour buses ten miles away. That’s what makes the weeklong trek unique.
Insider Tip: Do your research before you arrive. Time in the canyon system of Petra is precious, so it’s best to know what you want to see before you arrive. Besides the iconic sites of the Siq, the Treasury and the Monastery are mystical venues, as are the Place of High Sacrifice and the Great Temple.
4. Yosemite Grand Traverse, California, USA
Post Peak Pass to Tuolumne Meadows
Round-Trip: 60 miles, 6 to 7 days
When to Go: Reaching as high as 12,000 feet, this trans-Sierra route is open only from mid-July to mid-September.
Starting on obscure trails in the Ansel Adams Wilderness with unexpected views of the Minarets and other landmark Sierra Nevada peaks, this hike soon enters Yosemite National Park to follow the unique drainage of the Merced River. The traverse then joins the iconic John Muir Trail for a spectacular finish among the spires of the Cathedral Range. An unexpected highlight is the jaunt through the extensive drainage of the Merced River, the lifeblood of Yosemite Valley, where the route traces the headwaters through waterfalls, granite basins, and channels, interspersed with sprawling, sublime sub-alpine meadows.
Insider Tip: The trailhead logistics for this trip can be challenging, so make things easy by doing this trip with Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides, who pioneered the route and have mastered the journey from start to finish.
5. Tonquin Valley, Canadian Rockies, Alberta, Canada
Portal Creek to McCarib Pass to Tonquin Valley and Out via the Astoria River
Round-Trip: 27 miles, 3 to 5 days
When to Go: July to September; it can snow any day of the year.
Watching the sunrise light up the enormous broadside of the Ramparts, throwing golden reflections into the waters of Amethyst Lake, is an experience worthy of any effort expended to get into this wild valley. First photographed in 1915, the unrelenting beauty of the Tonquin Valley, nestled deep in the heart of the Canadian Rockies, has drawn pilgrims ever since—including Ansel Adams, whose very first trip as a Sierra Club photographer was right here. This big hiking loop takes you in over high, scenic McCarib Pass and out via the lovely Astoria River, laying the whole mind-blowing landscape before you in a backcountry journey to rival any.
Insider Tip: If all those grizzly bears wandering around make you uneasy, consider booking accommodations at two wilderness lodges hidden at the edges of the valley. Founded as horsepacking operations, both the Amethyst Lake Lodge and Tonquin Valley Lodge increasingly cater to hikers looking for a bit of comfort and home-cooked meals in this wild place.
6. Bay of Fires, Tasmania, Australia
Stumpy’s Bay to Bay of Fires Lodge
Round-Trip: 16 miles, 4 days
When to Go: October to May is the season for this beach route along the northeastern shore. Go with the Bay of Fires Walk; it’s the only way in or out.
From the start in Mount William National Park to the finish at the impressive Bay of Fires Lodge, the route never deviates from seemingly endless beaches of blinding white sand and surreal rock formations lapped by a turquoise Tasman Sea. Only the occasional headland of granite boulders, turned blood red by lichen or forested points of shoreline, pushes you up and out of the coves. The Bay of Fires walk is a four-day guided trip; you can’t do it solo, as there is no water on the route so no place to overnight. The first day takes you out to a permanent camp at Forester Beach. The second, longer day finishes at the architecturally striking Bay of Fires Lodge. It’s as green as they come—in fact, you’ll pump your own water up to rooftop tanks for a shower. Day three is the ultimate reward: free time on the stunning Bay of Fires coast with the comforts and fine wine of the lodge at your beck and call.
Insider Tip: Don’t bother learning to discriminate between the species of snakes on Tasmania—they all have fatal bites. Strikes are rare, however, so just keep your eyes peeled for the slithering black creatures when you’re crossing the headlands.
7. Queen Charlotte Track, New Zealand
Ship Cove to Anakiwa
Round-Trip: 44 miles, 3 to 5 days
When to Go: Located on the sunny north end of the South Island, near the famed wine growing region of Marlborough, the Queen Charlotte can be done virtually year round. Hike with Marlborough Sound Adventures, who have the logistics wired.
A unique journey through the sunny hills of the Marlborough Sounds, the Queen Charlotte follows the dragon’s back ridge that separates the blue waters of Queen Charlotte Sound from those of Kenepuru Sound. Water taxis take you from the town of Picton to the start, at Ship’s Cove, where Captain Cook hung out frequently between 1770 and 1779, and the finish at Anakiwa. You can camp the whole way, a style of hiking the Kiwis call “freedom walking,” or choose to turn the jaunt into a cush day-hiking experience not unlike trekking in Nepal—except your gear is carried by boat, not yak. Go luxe, and you can crank 15-mile days and stay every night in comfortable lodges at Furneaux, Punga Cove and Portage.
Insider Tip: The Queen Charlotte is one of the few tracks in New Zealand open to mountain bikers for part of the season. Go early or late in the season if you want to ride, or choose high summer if you want a more tranquil hike without bikers coming up behind you.
8. Kalalau Trail, Kauai, Hawaii, United States
Ke’e Beach to Kalalau Valley
Round-Trip: 22 miles, 3 to 5 days
When to Go: May to September for drier weather; April or October for more solitude
The finest coastal hike in the world, this rugged route through Kauai’s impressive Nā Pali Coast will challenge you physically with tropical heat and steep trails, and scare you with exposure on muddy slopes. But after a day of slogging 11 miles through the fluted cliffs above surf that crashes like howitzer fire on the coast below, you are rewarded with a view of the impossibly serene mile-long arc of golden Kalalau Beach along the shimmering Pacific. The Kalalau Valley itself holds fairy-tale waterfalls and lush tropical jungle, well worthy of exploration, but the highlight is camping right on the beach, with the Western Pacific before you, reflecting the setting sun.
Insider Tip: It’s hot, and you’ll be tempted, but don’t even think about cooling off with a swim at Hanakapi’ai Beach on the way in. All those small, makeshift memorials are erected in the memory of hikers who thought they might enjoy wading in and were immediately swept out to sea by the violent rips.