From the tropical rainforest to the Great Himalaya Trail
You know you're going somewhere special when your adventure is in the heart of the 'Heavenly Mountain' or in the 'Mountains of the Moon'. We didn't select our favorite mountains only based on their name but you have to admit that they are pretty inspiring! Mountains have always held a special place in World Expeditions' portfolio; crafting new trekking routes and exciting cycling itineraries amongst the world's greatest mountains ensures that we continue to provide unforgettable experiences.
Here are seven mountain adventures you have to add to your list.
Tian Shan – The Heavenly Mountain
This vast mountain range in Central Asia brings you varying landscapes, high passes, stunning lakes, and the spectacular pyramid of Khan Tengri. There is much more to see and discover in this ‘heavenly’ region. The little known Celestial (Tien Shan) Mountains cover 80 per cent of Kyrgyzstan giving rise to the nickname ‘Switzerland of Central Asia’. Explore the solitary beauty of Son-Kul and Issyk-Kul lakes, situated on a treeless mountain plateau, and learn more about a nation whose life is shaped by sheer peaks, swift horses and majestic glaciers.
Morocco’s blend of culture, natural beauty, and infrastructure make it an ideal place to explore by bike and the opportunities are both physically exhilarating and culturally infused. From Marrakesh head to North Africa’s highest mountain range to tackle its rugged, flat-topped peaks (still used by nomadic Berbers), ascend winding roads that twist through palm trees and fresh water ravines before crossing a narrow gorge to the idyllic Paradise Valley.
☶ Morocco: CYCLE THE HIGH ATLAS (8 days) | Departs MARCH-MAY & AUGUST-OCTOBER
Mountains of the Moon
Located on the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Rwenzori Mountains (or ‘Mountains of the Moon’) are easily Africa’s best kept secret: isolated, rarely visited and permanently snow-capped – they contain much of Africa’s permanent ice! They are in an extremely humid area, containing in total five different vegetation zones. Climbing from tropical rainforest through alpine valleys to glaciers, the trek is through awe-inspiring Giant Lobelia forests.
Named ‘uKhahlamba’ (barrier of spears) in the local Zulu language, the Drakensberg Mountains are the highest range in southern Africa, with many distinctive basalt buttresses gracing the skyline. The first night on the trail you will camp near the lip of Tugela Falls, the second highest waterfall in the world, and for the next five days you will follow the edge of the escarpment, river valleys and undulating moorlands encountering wild and spectacular scenery – and very few people…
☶ South Africa: DRAKENSBERG TRAVERSE (9 days) | Departs in MAY & OCTOBER
The natural splendour of far western Nepal more than rewards for its sheer remoteness. With the main passes often closed for months by snow, this region feels like a step back in time: few trekkers get here, which explains why locals will first greet you with curiosity before their open-heartedness takes over. After Rara Lake, the largest in Nepal, cross wild‑flower covered passes to reach Humla, the most remote district, on to the picturesque Yari Valley and finally the Tibetan border.
Covering some of the most pristine backcountries in the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, the John Muir Trail stretches for more than 200 miles, from the Yosemite Valley to Mount Whitney, the highest point of the Lower 48 States. Named after naturalist and activist John Muir, it wanders beneath high snow-capped peaks through untouched, wildlife-filled landscapes, beautiful meadows and forested river valleys that were famously photographed in the 1930s by Ansel Adams.
☶ United States: JOHN MUIR TRAIL (23 days) | departs JULY-SEPTEMBER
The Cordillera Huayhuash, one of the most spectacular ranges in the Peruvian Andes, was brought to the attention of the world following Joe Simpson’s book Touching the Void. Prepare for one of South America’s most exhilarating treks, where each day provides an ever-changing backdrop of soaring peaks, including the distinctive needle-like peak of Jirishanca and the impressive summit of Yerupaja, which at 6,640m is the second highest mountain in Peru.
☶ Peru: HUAYHUASH CIRCUIT (19 days) | departs in MAY & SEPTEMBER