As travellers and adventure enthusiasts, we often seek more than just panoramic views and thrilling hiking trails. We sometimes yearn for a connection with history and culture while immersing ourselves in breathtaking natural landscapes. Mountain tours that combine natural beauty and historical relevance offer the best of both worlds.
In this blog post, we will explore some of the most beautiful mountain tours across the world that not only promise an adventure of a lifetime but also allow you to delve into the past and lose yourself in fascinating stories and ancient legends.
1. Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, Peru
The legendary Inca Trail to Machu Picchu offers you the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of ancient Incas while traversing through the majestic Andean mountains. This 26-mile hike takes you to one of the world’s most famous archaeological sites, the ancient city of Machu Picchu, built in the 15th century by Inca emperor Pachacuti. As you navigate your way through lush forests, misty cloud forests, and formidable mountain passes, you will encounter various Incan ruins such as Runkuraqay and Phuyupatamarca that provide glimpses into their rich history and remarkable engineering feats.
2. Mont Blanc Circuit, France, Italy & Switzerland
The Mont Blanc Circuit, also known as the Tour du Mont Blanc (TMB), is a hiking trail that traverses through three countries – France, Italy, and Switzerland – encompassing an experience of diverse cultures and histories all while showcasing the unparalleled beauty of Mont Blanc. The 110-mile trek winds through ancient valleys dotted with picturesque alpine villages that have historical tales of their own. Traversing through different regions like Cormayeur (Italy) and Chamonix (France), hikers get to enjoy various culinary delights while learning about each area’s unique cultural heritage.
3. Mount Kailash Pilgrimage, Tibet
The sacred Mount Kailash in Tibet has been a pilgrimage site for centuries for Buddhists, Hindus, Jains, and Bön adherents who believe that circumambulating the peak is an act of absolution for their sins. Mount Kailash is believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva in Hindu mythology or Buddha Demchok for Buddhists. Pilgrims make a challenging 32-mile hike around this revered peak while admiring its striking beauty. The journey to Mount Kailash itself is steeped in spirituality and mysticism with pilgrims passing through remote villages steeped in ancient Tibetan culture.
4. The Nakasendo Way, Japan
The Nakasendo Way (“Path through Mountains”) is an ancient route which connected Kyoto and Edo (now Tokyo) during the Edo period from 1603-1868 serving as one of Japan’s Five Routes frequented by Samurai Lords and their entourages moving between these two power-centres. Trekking along this historical highway offers you a chance to wander through small towns frozen in time giving you glimpses into Japan’s rich feudal past. As you follow this well-preserved trail amidst forested paths and high passes between villages called “juku” or post stations which were once resting points for travellers, you get an opportunity to sample local Japanese culture at its best.
5. Lycian Way, Turkey
This picturesque long-distance coastal trek takes you along ancient roads once tread by Lycians who inhabited what is now modern-day Turkey nearly 3000 years ago. The 335-mile trek starts in Fethiye and ends at Antalya along colourful Mediterranean landscapes offering trekkers chances to visit archeological sites such as Xanthos – the capital city of Lycia known for its ancient tombs – as well as other cities like Olympus nestled in rocky mountains that still echo their glorious past.
The pleasure of hiking these beautiful mountain tours lies beyond the breath-taking views they present; they are an opportunity to immerse oneself in intriguing tales from bygone times while learning about various cultures that shaped our world today. Combining natural beauty with captivating history ensures that these experiences linger on our minds long after we’ve descended from those exhilarating heights.