This is a perfect time to start planning a hiking trip for summer or early autumn. From Switzerland to Poland, here are the best European destinations for your next hiking trip.
Since the long and harsh winter is over and the temperature continues to rise, it is time to get back to nature and spend some time exploring the great outdoors. Hiking is the perfect way to get some fresh air and discover beautiful places that you wouldn’t be able to see otherwise. If you are looking to plan a hiking trip somewhere outside the country, here are the best European destinations that are perfect for hiking lovers.
Switzerland is perhaps the most popular hiking destination in Europe. This country has incredible mountainous landscapes and some of the best panoramic views that are featured in endless articles and travel magazines. Spend a few days exploring the Alps, breathing in the crisp alpine air, and summiting the highest peaks in the whole mountain range. Some of the top trails include Grindelwald, where the village nestles beneath the famous peaks of the Eiger, the Matterhorn, Jungfrau, and the Lauterbrunnen valley where you can see spectacular Trummelbach waterfalls.
In the eastern-central part of Europe, Poland is known as the go-to hiking destination among neighboring countries. Here the best hiking paths can be found in the High Tatras which are located on the west side of the country. Zakopane, a popular hiking resort, offers beautiful hiking trails to beginners and more advanced hikers. The resort becomes busy during July and August, so the best time to visit is May to June or early autumn. The best part about hiking in Poland is the affordable price range, so you don’t have to worry about breaking your wallet.
Another hiking gem in this part of Europe is Romania. Mostly known for its Transylvania region and Dracula, Romania has some of the most rugged and wild mountains that hiking enthusiasts will love. On the Romanian side of the majestic Carpathians, you will encounter lots of wild animals and local people who will happily offer you to taste their homemade cheese and invite you to relax before you continue along the trail. Plus, since the country’s mountains are not as popular among tourists, you will get to enjoy the incredible scenery with no or very few people around.
If the colder climate doesn’t scare you, then you can embark on a journey into the great Norwegian outdoors. Norway offers some of the most stunning fjord scenery on the south side of the country that will take your breath away. Climb to the iconic Pulpit Rock or challenge yourself by reaching the top of Galdhøpiggen, the highest peak in Northern Europe. If you have enough time, travel far north to see the Northern Lights in the Arctic circle.
If you are looking for a bit more sunshine while on your hiking trip, then look no further than Spain. With an established reputation as a beach and cultural destination, Spain offers a variety of different hiking routes that are suitable for all levels of hikers. From short day hikes in the Pyrenees to the whole Camino de Santiago walking path for those who are looking for a bigger challenge. If you want something lighter, Camino del Rey is a stunning yet slightly challenging trail going through the gorge near Marbella that will remind you of the Great Canyon.
Another colder climate destination but no less beautiful. The Icelandic volcanoes, dramatic black beaches, giant waterfalls, and glaciers will simply leave you breathless. The most famous hiking route is the Laugavegur which is perfect for viewing the Icelandic highlands and getting lost in its wilderness. The Fimmvörðuháls Trek is another fan favorite. It begins at a stunning waterfall and includes some of the best views of a volcano.
Montenegro is a less known destination in the Balkans that makes a perfect destination for hiking holidays on a budget. You can hike around the famous Kotor Bay while enjoying charming waterfront views of different villages and towns or you can explore more challenging routes in the Durmitor National Park. Here you can plan different length hikes full of mountain rivers, dramatic hills, and wildlife.
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