Going on a hike when travelling allows us to experience a destination from a different perspective – you get close to nature and fauna of the region, and learn about the environment and culture while also getting some cardio into the bargain.
Hiking gives the opportunity to be at one with untouched nature, wildlife, and in some places remote communities and their ways of living. "The highlight for most hikers is finding a unique viewpoint to admire the awe-inspiring panoramas. This feeling is something which stays with a hiker forever," according to Oliver Bell, of Oliver's Travels, a website that specialises in quirky, one-of-a-kind places to stay. He has commissioned an analysis of Instagram to find the most walking routes in the world that feature most on the social media sharing platform. The researchers scoured Instagram to find how many times each walking route had been shared on Instagram, using relevant hashtags. From this they have determined the top 25 most Instagrammable walking routes, from the top 10 list it's easy to see from the breathtaking photos why are they are so appealing.
1. Appalachian Trail, USA – 622,549 posts
The USA’s Appalachian Trail has been named as the most Instagrammable walking route in the world with over 600,000 Instagram posts. This scenic trail stretches from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Mount Katahdin in Maine, comprising a total length of around 2200 miles. The highest point of the trail is Clingmans Dome which stands at 6643 feet.
2. Inca Trail, Peru – 161,079 posts
The Inca Trail is certainly one of the most famous walking routes in the world. This renowned trail leads the way to Machu Picchu and comprises of three overlapped trails – Mollepata, Classic and One Day. Both the traditional and classic trails are 82km in length. The trek is at the top of many people’s bucket lists.
3. Annapurna Circuit, Nepal – 102,049 posts
The Annapurna Circuit is a trek situated within the Annapurna mountain range of central Nepal. The trek can vary from 160 to 230 km depending on the route taken and whether any additional motor transportation is used. This stunning route crosses over two different river valleys and is centred by the Annapurna Massif.
4. West Highland Way, Scotland – 62,676 posts
One of Scotland’s most famous walking routes, this picturesque trek stretches 154km from Milngavie to Fort William, with the incredible scenery en-route including countryside parks, loch shores, open moorlands and steep mountains.
5. John Muir Trail, USA – 55,394 posts
This long distance trail is situated within the Nevada mountain range in California, and takes in Yosemite, Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Park. The length of the trail is 338.6km and reaches heights of 47,000 feet. The trail is named after the naturalist John Muir.
6. GR20, France – 46,266 posts
Hailed as the toughest long distance trail in France, this route traverses Corsica at a length of around 180km. The trail takes around 15 days to complete and is split among two notable sections, the northern section from Calenzana and Vizzavona, and the southern section from Vizzavona to Conca.
7. Tour du Mont Blanc, France – 40,025 posts
The Tour du Mont Blanc is one of the most popular long distance walking routes in all of Europe. The route circles the Mont Blanc massif and takes in a distance of around 170km - 10km of which is ascents and descents. The route encompasses parts of Italy and Switzerland as well as France.
8. Lycian Way, Turkey – 39,746 posts
The Lycian Way is a coastal walk in Turkey around ancient Lycia. The route starts at Ölüdeniz, near Fethiye and stretches 540km to Geyikbayırı. The route reaches altitudes of 15,000m.
9. Te Araroa, New Zealand – 35,304 posts
The Ta Araroa is New Zealand’s longest route taking in a total length of 3000km, which is the length of the two main islands from Cape Reinga to Bluff. The route includes an array of old tracks and walkways alongside newer tracks and link sections with roads.
10. Tongariro Alpine Crossing, New Zealand – 31,048 posts
The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is one of the most popular day hikes in New Zealand, and has been awarded World Heritage status for both cultural and natural significance. The walk crosses over volcanic terrain including the active volcano Mount Tongariro. In total the walk is around 19km in length.