Get Ready for Hiking Trips
In this hurry-up, need-it-yesterday world we live in, I'm always pleasantly surprised by how relaxing it is to slow things down to a walking pace. I see more, feel more, and remember more when I put one foot in front of the other.
My idea of the perfect vacation day? A vigorous, 10-mile hike amid remarkable scenery while in the company of new friends, capped by a glass of wine sipped at the very vineyard it was produced with the vintner himself on hand. A fine dinner awaits, as does a well-deserved night's sleep in a quaint inn.
Mind you, all of the arrangements and logistics of the dayincluding transporting my luggage aheadhave been taken care of by someone else. My biggest decision: whether to nap in a lush meadow or tour an ancient hilltop village. Carefree and invigorating, days like this are the essence of a guided hiking tour.
Apparently I'm not alone in thinking a vacation spent hiking beats lying on a chaise lounge at poolside. Hiking tour outfitters report record numbers of participants signing up for their healthy, active vacations.
Of course, if you're the independent-minded sort you might be able to arrange your own hiking adventure from soup to nuts, one that's nearly as splendid as the offerings of a tour company. You might even save a few dollars in the process. But then you would miss out on a guide's deep local knowledge, or the daily hike options of varying degree of difficulty, baggage shuttles, like-minded hiking companions, and package pricing. And you would have to contend with the headaches and hassles of planning your own trip. Me? I'd rather someone else did all of that legwork, so I could work my legs on a quiet country lane.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication