Singaporeans love hiking. So much so that this year saw a 15 percent increase in trips with itineraries where travellers can hike, according to travel agency Trafalgar. Whether it's to clock in the daily 10,000 steps or getting to do what local humidity would normally kill us doing, walking in nature has become part of travel. Even in countries you're familiar with, there are unexpected off-the-beaten-path and bucket-list worthy trails to check out. Here's three destinations for the new year ahead:
Explore one of the most unique geological areas on Earth—the Izu Peninsula. Weaving along the east coast and mountainous central spine towards its southernmost tip at Cape Irozaki, travellers feast their eyes on spectacular views like Mt. Fuji on clear days before following the west coast to Shuzenji, an atmospheric onsen thermal hot spring resort town. Perfect for winter is a fully guided, snowshoeing tour. Besides crossing remote white wonderland, the Snow Country tour takes you to a shinto shrine complex and arranges a unique stay in charming farming villages located in deep valleys.
One with great potential for discovery, the lesser-known Tajikistan is ripe in colourful history, culture, and breathtaking landscapes. Hike across the remote mountain system of Fann Mountains for unparalleled panoramas and stunning azure alpine lakes. See the ‘jewel in Tajikistan’s crown’ in Iskanderkul, where the lake is a mix of eerie blue and green waters, and of course, its magnificent waterfall.
The unspoilt corners of the Indian Himalayas showcase a first-hand-insight into the ancient Kumaon culture of Uttarkhand—a mountainous region that has remained mostly unchanged for centuries due to the number of people who have journeyed here. Venture across the Himalayas between different Shakti Village Houses in Deora, Alai and Jwalabanj. Plus, with authentic and sustainable accommodation, you get a glimpse into the region's way of life.
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