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  • Five of the world’s longest hiking trails

    For most, hiking represents a good occasion to work out, get some fresh air, and enjoy some really beautiful landscapes. For others, hiking is a necessity. And by this latter category of people, I don’t necessarily mean pedestrians or those who don’t have other option, but that category of mountaineers that could walk for days through wilderness just for the pure pleasure of conquering every little step. When it reaches this level, hiking is no longer a sport, but becomes a pilgrimage. Needless to stress out why half of the world’s longest hiking trails are actually the reminiscences of some old pilgrim routes.

    Camino de Santigo

    Following the northern coast of Spain, this network of ancient monastic routes leads thousands of tourists every year towards Santiago de Compostela, a medieval town which hosts the holy remains of St. James. Except for the first part, that takes pilgrims through the Pyrenees, the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela is by no means a strenuous one. Walking the whole 780 kilometers from Biarritz in France to Santiago gives you plenty of time to meet the most interesting people, see some amazing churches and, most of all, get in touch with the transcendental forces.

    Pilgrimage of Shikoku

    Tradition says that, in order for the pilgrimage of Shikoku to be complete, one must pray in each of the 88 Buddhist temples spread over the island. Along its 1200 kilometers, the pilgrimage takes you through Japan’s picturesque countryside and rich spirituality.

    Continental Divide Trail

    Still under construction, this magnificent trail follows the rims of the Rockies for over 5000 kilometers. So far, there is no record of anyone managing to finish this incredibly long trail in only one year (and walking all the way from New Mexico to Canada is no job for an amateur). However, the trail will give you the Rockies at their best, including portions of Yellowstone National Park, Colorado Mountains and Glacier National Park.

    The Appalachian Trail

    Although the Appalachian Trail is about 1500 kilometers shorter than the CDT, it is the one that became part of the American pop-culture. Unlike the CDT, the AT has meet numerous thru-hikers and has been the subject of numerous legends, books and ghost-stories. The forestry crests of the Appalachian Mountains will reward the daring hiker with unforgettable sunsets and those inimitable and misty summer mornings.

    Nordkalottleden

    Nordkalottleden represents the the hiker’s way of extracting the essence of Scandinavia. In it’s full length, the trail measures around 800 kilometers and takes mountaineers from Norway to Sweden, Finland and back. The trail is, in most cases, well-marked and you can even find cabins along it, so that you can enjoy the best of the Scandinavia’s glaciers, shady pinewoods and cool lakes.

    Of course, there might be longer or more demanding trails around the world, but few can compare with the diversity of landscapes you can encounter along these five trails that we’ve presented today.

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    Comments on Five of the world’s longest hiking trails

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    c TgAvatar
    c wrote on April 15, 2010:

    I am producing a shoot for Ecco shoes in Iceland and we are looking for 4 hikers to come with us on the shoot.
    2 guys – ages 20-33
    2 girls – ages 20-33
    You must be in good shape and able to hike with us from May 16-19. We will pay for all travel, etc.
    if this is something that interests you. Please email me your photo, name, age, where you live, height, and sizes.
    One thing, our Ecco hiking sample sizes are girls size 36 and men 39. but we go hire, as we take out the insoles for the shoes and they run a bit big.

    jaime TgAvatar
    jaime wrote on January 22, 2011:

    find my facebook i am gear ready and in shape

    i can bring my snowboard right

    James TgAvatar
    James wrote on October 16, 2011:

    Eh? The CDT has been accomplished by PLENTY of hikers in one year!

    James TgAvatar
    James wrote on March 19, 2012:

    Hellooooo! What about the Pacific Crest Trail?

    The “PCT” is 2,650 miles = 4265 kilometers

    Along the inland west coast of the USA, all the way from Mexico to Canada.

    Guiness Book of World Record Longest Hiking Trail is the PCT
    How can you write an article about the longest and not give the PCT a mention??? Wow, Really?

    Hiking Tim wrote on August 23, 2013:

    The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is longer than the Appalachian Trail. The Great Western Loop is longer than both of them.

    lori wrote on September 11, 2013:

    Hi Hiking Tim,

    Thanks for the info, we will include those in a further post!

    Bill Hiker TgAvatar
    Bill Hiker wrote on April 1, 2014:

    The Appalachian Trail is something every hike-lover must do, it is wild, beautiful and really brings you closer to your boundaries!

    erato wrote on April 2, 2014:

    That is true indeed Bill, The Appalachian Trail is amazing, I love to hike there with the whole family, but it is also perfect for a romantic camping, a little solo time or friends.

     
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