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  • The best hiking destinations for beginners

    Villarica Volcano, photo by Ollie Harridge

    Hiking is an awesome way of visiting natural attractions, but the truth is that sometimes it can be awfully difficult. Those who are not used to physical effort will sometimes find it exhausting to follow in the footsteps of an experienced hiker who is used to climbing steep slopes and difficult terrain, and nobody likes to be the last one in a group of climbers, slowly and tortuously trying to follow them. That’s why if you are a beginner in matters of hiking, it’s better if you start small. Easier hikes are not less scenic or less worthwhile then the more difficult ones, and you will build up stamina and experience for longer and more complicated trails, so here are some of the best hiking destinations for beginners.

    The Grand Canyon, Arizona

    Grand Canyon

    The utterly, exhilaratingly beautiful Grand Canyon will probably not strike you as an easy hike if you look at it from above. First of all, it’s pretty deep, and the sides of the canyon look rather steep. However, the fact that you get to see the canyon from the bottom and also the relatively low number of visitors are good enough reasons to climb down on the 6.5 mile South Kaibab Trail, spend a day resting at the bottom and then climb back on the 9 mile Bright Angle Trail.

    Volcan Villarica, Pucon, Chile

    Villarica is an active volcano and hiking up active volcanoes is rather cool (not to mention really insane-sounding), and a day trip to the top of Villarica is pretty doable even if you don’t have much hiking experience. If you leave Pucon early in the morning (5-6), you can arrive to the top early in the afternoon, and then slide back to the base on a luge track.

    Colca Canyon, Peru

    Colca Canyon, photo by Leonora Enking

    Colca Canyon is the second deepest canyon in the world, much deeper than Grand Canyon, so the altitude can be a bit problematic, but if you take time to get used to the rarefied air, you will be fine. The canyon is populated and there are lots of villages and small communities on the way. You can book a place in a group in Arequipa, and choose the three day hikes for a slower and easier trip.

    Mount Fuji, Japan

    Mount Fuji looks formidable from afar, but the hike to the top is not a difficult feat, and people of pretty much any age and experience can do it. To make the most of the trip, climb to the top in the afternoon and spend the night in a hut, then watch the sunrise the next morning – it will be one of the most amazing things you’ll ever see.

    Southern Drankensberg Mountains, South Africa

    Field on Drakensberg Mountains

    The Drakensberg Mountains offer some spectacular hiking opportunities, some extremely difficult, as well as a few moderate and easy ones. First timers on Drakensberg who want to see some incredible San rock art should head to the southern portion of the mountains, to Kamberg Nature Reserve.

    Kamberg

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