Photo by: Andi Campbell-Jones

The Alps have long been a hiking haven. From the bright green pastures to the snow capped mountains and alpine lakes the mountain range is home to…

The Alps have long been a hiking haven. From the bright green pastures to the snow capped mountains and alpine lakes the mountain range is home to excellent facilities and well marked trails that are utilized by millions of hikers and trekkers each year. Elsewhere you’ll find lesser known trails, although no less stunning, in the Apennines, the Pyrenees. Mountain ranges from Spain to Turkey are explored throughout the European summer by everyone from American fratpackers to hard core adventurers.

  1. Tour de Mont Blanc, France/Italy/Switzerland The 106 mile trail near highest peak in the Alps (15,780 feet) traverses three borders. Snow can happen on any day, but cozy huts and hostels give you a warm bed and great meals to finish each day in.
  2. Camino de Santiago, Spain Hiking this 460 mile pilgrimage footpath, a thousand year old tradition, leads to cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, the third holiest site in Christianity.
  3. The Haute Route, Switzerland The heart of the Alps, from Chamonix to Zermatt, is the setting for this 100-mile footpath. Stay in huts under the shadows of Europe’s highest peaks.
  4. Sardinia, Italy The wild Italian island of Sardinia is lined with sheep and footpaths leading to caves, gorges, and an untouched Mediterranean coastline.
  5. The Dolomites, Italy Pink limestone towers, green meadows, and Tyrolean culture; this is not the typical Italian adventure.
  6. White Mountains, Crete Trekking in Europe’s longest gorge, past picturesque fishing villages, and along a scenic coast.
  7. The Coast-to-Coast Route, England This 190-mile walk from the Irish Sea to the North Sea passes through the best of the English countryside.
  8. West Highland Way, Scotland You’ll hike from Milngavie outside Glasgow for 95 miles to Fort Williams at Loch Linnhe, passing lochs, moors, and typical highland scenery.
  9. High Tatra Mountains, Poland/Slovakia Unspoiled scenery, pristine mountain lakes, well marked trails, good facilities, and low cost are all excellent reasons to venture down these little used trails.
  10. Catalan Pyrenees, Spain Centering on the Parque Nacional D’Aiguestortes/Estany de Sant Maurici there’s a loop trail dotted with 11 refugios in this glacial valley.

Click here for Top 10 Hiking / Trekking Vacations in North America