Move over Milford, this New Zealand hike has been voted one of the best in the world.
A new survey into the world's most popular walking tracks has revealed the Tongariro Alpine Crossing as the second best trail in the world. Reviewing the volume of visitors, sentiment and social media posts left by happy trampers, adventure travel firm The Bucket List company has drawn up a list of top tracks.
The day walk through New Zealand's oldest national park and past the North Island's impressive volcanic centre wowed walkers. The 19km trek attracted feedback from 46,988 walkers who left glowing social media posts of their hike.
Although the blue glacial pools and thermal vents were hits with instagrammers, it was pipped to the post by a scenic Italian trail.
The Sentiero degli Dei or "Pathway of the Gods" follows the Amalfi Coast for eight sheer kilometres. However the length of the walk means the coastal path between the towns of Agerola and Nocelle is easily achievable. No bivvies or bothies here. Accommodation and food along Italy's Lemon Coast is also world class. "Ranked as an easy trail to complete, with the 8km walk suitable for a one day hike," said The Bucket List.
Easily accessible, single day walks proved to be the most popular of the walks surveyed. However, if you're up for a challenge, the third place Paine Grande in Chile should be your next port of call.
The hiking route through Torres del Paine, crosses paths with the famous multi-day known as "the W" for its wiggly route across the Andes. It's a compressed 'best of' for those with only limited time. The trek provides "stunning views of Cuernos del Paine and Cerro Paine Grande" according to The Bucket List. At 22.2k it can be done in a day, at a push.
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Those who don't fancy slumming the trek in camping sites can check into catered "refugios" somewhere between an alpine hut and a hotel - they range from rustic to high luxury.
Tongariro was not New Zealand's only entry in the top 10. The world-famous Milford track through Fiordland landed at number 10. However reviews of the 53.5k track were far more mixed. Sentiment was split at 46 per cent positive, as hikers either raved or bemoaned the "moderate" multi-day trek from Lake Te Anau to Milford Sound.
Routes in the New Zealand and South American Andes populated the top ten, with Peru's Lares and Salkantay multi-day treks landing at 4th and 5th place respectively.
A surprise Urban entry to the list was Hong Kong's Lantau Trail. A half hour drive from Central Hong Kong, on Lantau Island. The 70km, well-marked route can take 12 days to complete through the city state's largest island and national park area.