21 of The Best Treks in the World

Written By: The Planet D

Throughout our many adventures around the globe, we have had the privilege of participating in some of the best treks in the world.

We’ve been lucky to have hiked, trekked and visited 110 countries on all seven continents. While we don’t include Antarctica on this list of treks, we did do quite a few great hikes on the continent and think it is probably one of the final frontiers for great treks on earth.

But we have rounded up the greatest treks, we’ve done on six continents.

Great Treks of the World

The way we chose this list of the best treks in the world is by only mentioning the treks personally been to. There are other amazing treks on earth, but if we haven’t personally taken part in some way, we can’t recommend them.

We decided to choose our list this way so that you can click through to find more information on our travel blog so that you can do it yourself!

We’ve also had guest contributors inspire us to expand our list to more great destinations. So, to add a few more treks, if a fellow expert has already written about a great hike it in depth on The Planet D it’s on it.

These are some of our favorite treks on earth!

1. Mount Everest Base Camp Trek – Nepal

treks in the world everest

Nothing has ever compared to trekking to the base camp of the highest mountain in the world. In our opinion, it is the best trek in the world.

The trek to base camp takes 12 days round trip through the Himalayan mountain range.

What makes this trek difficult is the number of days spent at a sustained high altitude. Once you land in Lukla and climb for a day, the rest of the trip is over 4000 meters.

But it if you take it slow and steady, this is a trip that is worth every heaving breath. The trek is awe-inspiring as you walk through high passes, surrounded by the highest peaks on earth.

  • Duration: 12 Days
  • Highlights Include – Villages, scenes of highest mountains, Sherpa Memorials, tea houses, base camp
  • Best Time to Trek – Feb – May (we trekked Feb and there were few crowds) and Nov – Dec
  • Suggested Tour Company – Simrik Real Nepal

Read our complete guide to Everest Base Camp

2. Mount Kilimanjaro – Tanzania

treks in the world kilimanjaro

Reaching the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro was one of the greatest achievements we’ve ever accomplished.

We took the Machame Route aka the Whiskey Route to Uhuru Peak in Tanzania.

What makes this trek so unique is how many ecosystems the trail passes through.

It begins in a tropical rainforest of Tanzania and then moves through farmland, forests, moorlands, a mountain desert, and a freezing summit climbing zone.

Seeing massive cacti line the route made for spectacular scenery.

  • Duration: 7 Days
  • Highlights Include – changing scenery, moorlands
  • Best Time to Trek – It’s possible to climb Kilimanjaro any time of year, but the two main seasons are Jan – March and June – Oct. We climbed the first week of March and it was great conditions.
  • Suggested Tour Company – Kessey Brothers

3. Laya Trek – Bhutan

best treks in the world laya

Trekking in Bhutan was a dream come true.

Surrounded by the Himalayas in a country that few people travel to was one of the most memorable experiences we’ve ever had.

The Trek to Laya is one of the more popular routes in Bhutan, but that doesn’t mean it is busy. There is a $250 daily tourism fee to enter the country, keeping crowds to a minimum.

The trek runs along the Tibetan border crossing rivers, high passes and through villages.

It ends at the village of Laya.

  • Duration: 4 Days
  • Highlights Include – Villages, scenes of highest mountains, Sherpa
  • Best Time to Trek – April – June and Sept – Nov. We trekked in Sept and it was wet, but the Highland festival was going on and it’s amazing.
  • Suggested Tour Company – Simrik Real Nepal , or Gray Langur to coincide with festival.

Read More About our Trek to Laya here

4. Inca Trail – Peru

best treks of the world inca trail

While the Inca Trail is so overly popular it turns people off, it would be criminal not to include it. Many people say it is the best trek in the world!

This trek follows the ancient trade routes of the Incas from Cusco to the lost city of Machu Picchu.

What more could you ask for in an adventure? There are several other treks around the Sacred Valley, so if you can’t book a slot on this heavily backlogged trail, check out some other hikes as well.

  • Duration: 3 Days
  • Highlights Include – Inca Ruins, Machu Picchu, views of the Andes.
  • Best Time to Trek – April to October is high season, March is a good time to avoid the crowds.
  • Suggested Tour Company – Get Your Guide

Read: All You Need to Know to Be Prepared for a Machu Picchu Hike.

5. Torres del Paine – Chile

torres del paine patagonia treks of the world

Patagonia in South America is one of the premier destinations on earth for avid trekkers. And Torres del Pain is one of the top hiking routes in the area. This multiday hike requires trekkers to carry tents, food and camping equipment.

Here you’ll see monstrous glaciers, situated between snowy peaks and teal blue lagoon reflecting mountains. Read more:

  • Duration: 5 Days
  • Highlights Include – glaciers and icebergs, wildlife and
  • Best Time to Trek – June – August

Read about the entire experience here.

6. Jyrgalan Valley – Kyrzgkstan

best treks of the world kyrgzstan

This hike to the Boz Uchuch Lakes in Kyrgzgkstan’s Jyrgalan Valley region is one of the premier treks in the country.

It takes trekkers over to Boz Uchuk Pass to the Glacier lakes. We did this trek on horseback, but it is also very popular for hikers.

  • Duration: 4 Days
  • Highlights Include – wild horses roaming the valleys, high mountain passes, stunning views.
  • Best Time to Trek – June – August
  • Suggested Tour Company – Book at The Alakol Guesthouse in Jyrgalan

7. Missinaibi Headwaters – Canada

best treks in canada missinaibi headwaters winter

For extreme trekkers, I would say this winter trek is one of the toughest you’ll ever do.

There are no Sherpas or porters to carry your bags, it’s all snowshoeing through rugged terrain while pulling sleds over frozen lakes and rivers packed with enough gear to last 12 days in sub-zero conditions.

I’m talking about carrying ice picks to chip through meter thick ice for water, axes for cutting down trees for firewood and a woodstove to keep the massive prospector’s tent from freezing.

If you want to show up anyone at the holiday party with your bragging rights, this is the trek for you!

  • Duration: 10 Days
  • Highlights Include – incredible winter scenery, once in a lifetime experience
  • Best Time to Trek – January
  • Suggested Tour Company – Lure of the North.

8. Great Ocean Walk – Australia

best treks in the world great ocean walk

Most people have heard of the Great Ocean Road in Victoria Australia. It is a beautiful drive that ends at the picturesque Twelve Apostles.

But if you really want to see the extraordinary coast, the Great Ocean Walk the things to do.

This multi day trek takes hikers along on a 56 km trek on the rugged Victoria coast.

After each day of hiking along beaches, through forests and wooden walkways, we were picked up and taken back to our luxury lodge where we were fed gourmet meals and soaked our feet in hot soapy baths.

The next morning we were dropped off at the point where we ended the day before to continue our walk to the twelve apostles.

  • Duration: 4 Days
  • Highlights Include -luxury accommodation, 5-star food, secluded beaches, kangaroos and wildlife, Twelve Apostles.
  • Best Time to Trek – Any time of year – we hiked in January and it was fantastic
  • Suggested Tour Company –  Twelve Apostles Lodge Walk

9. el Camino de Santiago – Spain

best treks in spain camino

The Route of Saint James also known as the el Camino de Santiago is a rite of passage for serious trekkers and has been a Pilgrimage since the 9th century.

There are eight different starting points that can take you from France, Spain or Portugal to Santiago de Compostela where the trek ends.

We’ve done many hikes throughout the Pyrenees, but we have yet to put them together to trek the Camino de Santiago. But it is high on our list!

Soon, very soon, now that Dave can walk again without pain after breaking his back in the Amazon.

  • Duration: 1 week to 35 days Days
  • Highlights Include – Striking views of the Pyrenees through historic villages, monasteries and vineyards
  • Best Time to Trek – April – October. July & August are high season, May and Sept are recommended.
  • GetYourGuide offers a 7-day hike along a stretch of the French Way.

10. Sunshine Coast Trail – Canada

treks of the world sunshine coast

This hut to hut trail spans 180 km along the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. The huts are free to stay in and it’s Canada’s longest hut to hut trail.

Sarah Point where you can take a water taxi with the great people of Terracentric Adventures in Lund.

Located at the northern tip of Desolation Sound and continues to Salterly Bay.

You don’t have to do the entire route, you can choose shorter day hikes like we did but if you do the entire route, you’ll have the privilege of seeing some of Canada’s most beautiful scenery for a solid two weeks.

  • Duration: 2 weeks
  • Highlights Include – Tin Hat Mountain, inland lakes, Powell River,
  • Best Time to Trek –
  • Suggested Tour Company – Terracentric Adventures and multi-day hikes.

If you are on the West Coast of Canada, an iconic Canadian Trek is the West Coast Trail.

11. Mount Kinabalu – Malaysian Borneo

best treks in the world borneo

It’s one of the premiere climbs in South East Asia and Mount Kinabalu is a great introduction to trekking.

We have it on our greatest treks on earth list because it was the very first trek we ever did in 2003!

Just visiting Borneo is an adventure to itself let along climbing Malaysia’s highest peak.

  • Duration: 2 Days
  • Highlights Include – amazing summit view.
  • Best Time to Trek –
  • Suggested Tour Company – We booked our trek at the park headquarters.

12. John Muir Trail – United States

best treks in the United states john muir

The John Muir Trail is one of the most popular hikes in America. It runs 221-miles through California’s Sierra Nevada.

The trail takes you through lush valleys, creaks, and alpine vistas. There are six mountain passes with one reaching 14,000 feet.

Most of the trail is steadily over 10,000 feet making it quite the accomplishment.

For full details read: How to Hike the John Muir Trail

13. Routeburn Track – New Zealand

treks in new zealand routeburn

The hardest part of the Routeburn in New Zealand is getting a slot on the trail. It’s a popular trek. There are campsites and lodges on the hike that must be booked in advance.

Lucky we were traveling with the Flying Kiwi and everyone that wanted to do the Routeburn had it set up in advance. The bus dropped everyone off on the Te Anau side and met up a couple of days later in Queenstown.

Located in Fiordland National Park on the South Island of New Zealand The Routeburn Track is New Zealand’s most renowned trek.

The highest point take you up 1,255 metres above sea level for beautiful views.

  • Duration: 2 Days
  • Highlights Include – mountain peaks, waterfalls and beautiful lakes.
  • Best Time to Trek – Any time of year.
  • Suggested Tour Company – Flying Kiwi

Another great day trek in New Zealand is the Tongariro Crossing. It is beautiful.

14. Adam’s Peak – Sri Lanka

treks of the world adams peak

Adam’s Peak is a spiritual pilgrimage in Sri Lanka that lasts a mere 24 hours. It is believed that Adam first stepped foot on earth here when he was cast down from heaven.

Sri Lanka’s holiest place attracts pilgrims each year to climb its 5200 steps. Starting in the middle of the night, it is the perfect time to make it to the top for sunrise.

  • Duration: 2 Days
  • Highlights Include – amazing cultural experience, glorious sunrise, shops and temples along the route.
  • Best Time to Trek – anytime of year, but the pilgrimage is December to May
  • Suggested Tour Company – No company needed.

Read about our on Adam’s Peak here

15. Headhunter’s Trial and Pinnacles – Borneo

treks in borneo headhunters trail pinnacles

Hiking along the headhunter’s trail of Borneo is like something out of a movie.

We had to take a small twin-engine airplane to Gunung Mulu National Park. We then secured our hiking permits to the Pinnacles were to set off by boat, and river crossings before reaching base camp.

The next day it was a rugged steep climb up to the most interesting view we have ever seen in our lives.

Pinnacles, a stone forest jutting 45 metres out of the earth, in razor-sharp

  • Duration: 3 Days
  • Highlights Include – Pinnacles, Gunung Mulu National Park, Bat Cave
  • Best Time to Trek – the dry season is the suggested time to trek, but we went in January during the rainy season (When they say to avoid) and it was spectacular.
  • Suggested Tour Company – Park Headquarters

Read all about our trek at the Pinnacles of Borneo

16. Sapa – Vietnam

best treks in vietnam sapa

Getting off the beaten path of Sapa in Vietnam feels like you are walking through a National Geographic spread. Rice terraces filled with water drop down steep mountains.

Choose a tourist company that will take you deep into the mountains along the Chinese border that books a homestay with families living in the mountains of Sapa.

  • Duration: 4 Days
  • Highlights Include – tea terraces, small villages, cultural experiences
  • Best Time to Trek – year-round

17. Pukaskwa National Park – Canada

best treks in the world pukaskwa

Not many people have heard of the Pukaskwa Coastal Trail in Ontario, Canada. It is often overshadowed by the West Coast Trail or The East Coast Trail, but this trail along Lake Superior is a tough one.

The trip can be an out and back, or you can take a boat out to North Swallow to 60 km up the trail. The trek back along the rolling coast.

You must carry all food and drink in and out with you so if you don’t have experience, be sure to hire a guide.

  • Duration: 6 Days
  • Highlights Include – Wild remote trail, wildlife, Lake Superior Shore
  • Best Time to Trek – It is open May – Sept but for drier weather we suggest, June – August
  • Suggested Tour Company – Naturally Superior Adventures

Read more about our Pukaskwa Hike

18. Mount Fuji – Japan

mount fuji treks in the world

Japan’s highest mountain is an exciting trek. Otherwise known as Fuji-san, it is an active volcano that is regarded as one of Japan’s three sacred peaks and iconic sites.

Standing at 3,776 meters ( 12,388 feet) high, it is a steep slope to climb, but even beginners can do it.

300,000 people (including some inexperienced hikers I know) climb Mount Fuji every year, so don’t worry if you’re not a frequent hiker.

  • Duration: 2 Days
  • Highlights Include – beautiful sunrise above the clouds of Japan, warm mountain huts.
  • Best Time to Trek – Open to hikers from July 1 to early September, the best time to climb is from the end of July to late August

19. Gunung Batur – Bali

treks of the world bali

Another great day hike is up the active volcano on the paradise island of Bali.

This trek was our very first volcano hike and it was spectacular. Trekking around a crater’s edge is the adventure of a lifetime and seeing steam spew from an active volcano gives a rush like you’ve never experienced.

Be sure to stay on top of warnings and hire a reputable tour company, after what happened in New Zealand, we don’t recommend hiking active volcanoes.

  • Duration: 1 Day
  • Highlights Include – witness an active volcano
  • Best Time to Trek – Any time of year

20. Cinque Terre – Italy

best treks in italy cinque terre

The five villages hike (Cinque Terre) on the coast of Italy is a beautiful trek along the Italian Riviera.

If you’ve never trekked before and are looking to get your feet wet, this is a short 1 day hike taking you through beautiful scenery. You can even indulge in delicious food and wine along the way.

  • Duration: 1 Day
  • Highlights Include – picturesque villages, beaches, wine, olives, lemons and Italian hospitality
  • Best Time to Trek – You can hike anytime of year. Summer is the hottest, but we suggest shoulder season Spring/Fall to avoid the high tourist season.

21. Annapurna Circuit

base camp trek photos mountains
The Himalayas open up in front of you early on.

Immediately after trekking to Everest Base Camp, we made our way to Pokhora to climb the Annapurna Circuit.

Little did we know we’d be trekked out by this point and we never did get around to hiking into the Himalayas once again. We always regret being so lazy, but we did do some trekking into the surrounding mountains.

Annapurna is more widely trekked than the Everest Base Camp Trek and has been the top trekking route in Nepal for decades.

  • Duration: 16 – 20 Days
  • Highlights Include – Villages, scenes of highest mountains, Sherpa Memorials, tea houses, base camp
  • Best Time to Trek – Nov – Dec, and Feb to April
  • Suggested Tour Company – Simrik Real Nepal

22. Snowman Trek – Bhutan

best treks in the world snowman trek

It was during our Laya trek, that we passed the entrance to the Snowman Trek in Bhutan.

The Snowman trek is considered the hardest trek in the world as it spends 25 days at sustained high altitudes.

We didn’t have the time, nor the money to take part in a 25-day trek in Bhutan, but it is on many people’s bucket lists. Our guide Sangay told us all about it as he leads the Snowman Trek every year!

  • Duration: 25 Days
  • Highlights Include – World’s highest mountain passes, views of the Himalayas.
  • Best Time to Trek – June – October

Read More Great Adventures:

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About The Planet D

Dave Bouskill and Debra Corbeil are the owners and founders of The Planet D. After traveling to 115 countries, on all 7 continents over the past 13 years they have become one of the foremost experts in travel. Being recognized as top travel bloggers and influencers by the likes of Forbes Magazine, the Society of American Travel Writers and USA Today has allowed them to become leaders in their field.

Leave a Comment

26 thoughts on “21 of The Best Treks in the World”

  1. Great post! So many amazing treks in the world 😀
    Just a heads up, the picture you have for the Annapurna Circuit is actually from the Everest Base Camp trek. That’s an awesome picture of Ama Dablam!

  2. Great read!
    I would love to see the great trekkings in the Karakoram in the list, K2 base camp trek, and k2 Gondogoro la trek no doubt can make space in the list if I am not wrong.


  3. Many thanks for curating the list. As there are no treks from India included in the list I would like to list some of my favorite treks like Auden’s Col trek, Lamkhaga pass trek, Great lakes trek Kashmir, Kalindikhal trek and Umasi la pass trek.

  4. I want to thank you for your time for this wonderful Article!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff in your blog post. Not to mention the pictures are so perfect and beautiful, a gift of mother nature. Just looking at the pictures of these beautiful places made my day. God willing I would love to visit these places very soon. Keep posting and spreading Happiness. Cheers!!!

  5. Hi Guys
    I don’t see any hikes you’ve done in South Africa . You have to go on the Otter Trail, a hiking trail along the Garden Route coast of South Africa and is named for the Cape clawless otter which occurs in this region. And another famous one is through the Tsitsikamma National Park also along the Garden Route on South Africa’s southern coast. The Tsitsikamma National Park encompasses a marine reserve, deep gorges and local vegetation like the Big Tree, a towering yellowwood. The Mouth Trail crosses a suspension bridge over Storms River. If you love hiking then these SA trails are a must see. All the best

  6. All these seem to be amazing if looking for some adventures around the world. But this post hurts me a little because it doesn’t have any treks of India and as we know that India is the country which is best known for its mountains. Apart from this, this post really gave me some amazing information.

  7. Wow, looks beautiful. This post is giving me serious wanderlust. And it’s on my bucket list, would like to get there within the next couple of years.

  8. These photos are just stunning – truly stunning. If they don’t inspire someone to want to travel and trek I dont know what would!

  9. Thanks for sharing this information, I really love the photo story. Would love to read more about your upcoming blogs.
    It’s great that you have shared a wonderful pic of the places you guys have visited.

  10. Amazing post! I love that you have given such a detailed description of a widely unexplored country. Thanks!

  11. Holy crap, sign me up for all of these! I didn’t do nearly enough hiking in Southeast Asia…now I’ve totally gotta go back.

    • WE agree, we have done a bit of hiking in SE Asia, but definitely need to do more. For the amount of times we’ve been there, we should have been out a lot more. We’ll go back with you!

  12. I couldn’t be more impressed! I am not sure if I should be more jealous of the adventures or the incredible photos you will have forever as splendid memories of these trips. Wow. Your pictures are so vibrant! Great blog!

  13. Wow, awesome photos and great mountain accomplishments! That picture of Everest base camp is unbelievable. I am hopefully heading to Borneo in May to climb Mt. Kinabalu. I hear it is quite strenuous but I am really looking forward to it.
    .-= Migration Mark´s last blog ..Rules of Engorgement: Burger Hut Nairobi =-.

    • Awesome Mark! Mount Kinabalu is a fun climb. It is difficult because there is a lot of altitude gained in only a 2 day climb. Plus it is a lot of steps so it is hard on the calves. We couldn’t walk properly for a couple of days after coming down:)

  14. These photos are just stunning – truly stunning. If they don’t inspire someone to want to travel and trek I dont know what would!
    .-= Shannon OD´s last blog ..A Little Explanation…AKA Why I’m a “Don’t Ask” Vegetarian =-.

  15. Wonderful photos – very inspiring.
    .-= Abi from Inside the Travel Lab´s last blog ..The Reluctant Tuscan =-.