By Catie Keeler
A long-distance hike is a great way to see the world and to learn more about the environment that we all share. You can learn more about the natural world, including more about animals and plant species that may be endangered. This knowledge can help you better understand how your own actions have an impact so that you can make changes that benefit the environment and all those that live in it.
There are beautiful long-distance hikes available around the world. Whether you want to stay close to home or travel to new lands, there is a hike available for you. Not only will you learn more about nature on your hike, but you’ll consume fewer natural resources than you would on a traditional vacation, helping lessen your impact on the environment.
Here are a few of our favorite long-distance hikes at home or abroad:
The Appalachian Trail
Whether you are looking to hike for a few days or a few months, the Appalachian Trail offers options for you. The full trail is 2,175 miles long and stretches from Georgia to Maine. Walking the full trail would take you five to seven months. However, many people choose to walk just a portion, and several segments are marked along the way to customize your path.
The Kerry Way
This beautiful trail winds its way through Southwestern Ireland around the famed Kerry Peninsula (or the Ring of Kerry). The trail is broken down into multiple segments if you want to try shorter hikes, but the full trail is over 100 miles long and takes a few days to a week to complete. Along the way, you’ll see beautiful pastoral landscapes, ragged cliffs, and crashing seas.
The Milford Track
Wind your way from the north of New Zealand down to the west coast on this trail that includes beautiful forests, scenic landscapes, and lovely beaches. A relatively shorter trail, this hike will take you about four days to finish. However, this hike is known around the world for its stunning views.
This challenging trail in Turkey spans 310 miles and covers 6,000-feet mountain peaks and thick forests. The Lycian Way is a relatively new trail – only just over 10 years old – but it encompasses beautiful grounds with a lot of history. The trail traces the shoreline of the Teke Peninsula in the southwest and takes a little over a month to complete.
American Discovery Trail
If you really want to get to know your home country, there’s no better way than to walk its entirety from coast to coast. This trail spans 6,800 miles and 15 states from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean. Depending on fast you hike and how many stops you make, the trail could take you about a year or more to complete. Along the way, you’ll pass through 14 national parks and 16 national forests.
There are, of course, hundreds more long-distance trails throughout the world, each with something different to show you.
What long-distance trail have you hiked (or would you like to hike)? Share your thoughts in the comments!
Catie Keeler is the primary researcher and writer for mortgagerates.info. Her most recent accomplishments include graduating from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill with a degree in business and communications. Her current focus for the site involves research about mortgage amortization and mortgage rates kansas city.