By Nina Simons
Eco-friendly travel is now part of the regular tourist offer all over the world. However, since it’s still a relatively new thing, people sometimes have a hard time to truly understand what it is all about. Besides behaving environmentally responsible like using reusable bags and eating local products, you can also choose the type of travel.
This means that embarking on a journey by foot or bicycle is more desirable than going by car or bus. And many countries recognized this as a unique opportunity to promote active tourism, like hiking. If you want to become an eco-friendly traveler, here are the most beautiful islands you can visit on foot.
1. Crete, Greece
Crete is an important part of Greek heritage with a rich history and cultural tradition in poetry and music. Divided into three main regions for hiking, Crete is also an ideal place to become one with nature and enjoy some gorgeous landscapes. Gorges full of lakes and waterfalls go all the way from inland mountain ranges and emerge at beaches on the Mediterranean Sea.
There is a deserted shepherd trail for a week-long hike that will truly give you peace to clear your thoughts and experience nature. Some of the best hikes are Samaria Gorge and Tripiti/Sougia Coast Walk, which are not long and will show you all the beauties of Crete in a nutshell.
2. Lord Howe Island, Australia
Around 500 miles from Sydney lies a magnificent island of Lord Howe, a place which self-proclaimed itself as the cleanest place in the world. And rightly so since it is a home of many plants and animals once believed extinct. All this makes it a perfect destination for hiking holidays. The island itself is only 6.2 miles long and it will take you half a day to hike it all unless you decide to make longer stops at some points, like its tallest peak Mount Gower.
The locals are more than happy to welcome you and show you some of the local delicacies like fish fry and tell you stories about the island’s history. This is also the place to see Ball’s Pyramid, the largest freestanding sea stack in the world.
3. Madeira, Portugal
Madeira is a Portuguese island full of green valleys and fruitful vineyards. Enriched with natural beauties and 1,000 of miles of manmade irrigation channels, this is one of the most magnificent places for hiking. Less experienced hikers can start with the Levada dor Tornos a gentle trail that offers a comfortable stroll between botanical gardens and through mimosa forest.
For those who desire a longer hike, Levada do Norte goes through the wine-producing area where everything is produced by hand. There is also a path starting and ending at a rustic mountain inn that will take you through sheep-farming lands and up the hills from which you can see the sea.
4. Bruny Island, Tasmania
Famous as a home to the southernmost winery in Australia, Bruny Island is also a perfect place to enjoy eco-friendly travel on foot. This island is rich in dolerite cliffs which are one of the trademarks of Tasmania. Combined with sandy beaches and eucalyptus forests, these are perfect landscapes for invigorating Bruny Island hikes. Stop by the local food producers and farmers to taste their products like cheese, oysters, and wines which will make the walking experience even better.
5. Skye, Scotland
Scotland is already famous for its lavish, green hills and valleys stretching for miles and sometimes all the way to the horizon. Skye, a part of Hebridean islands of Scotland’s coast is the stuff of which fairy tales are made. With beautiful Cuillin mountains surrounded by the peninsulas, pearly beaches, and sea lochs, this is a gorgeous place to go on a hike.
Go on a five-mile hike at the Quiraing and Sròn Vourlinn Ridge where you will follow the trail on the Trotternish peninsula. It will show you spectacular sights of the coast since you’ll be traveling through magnificent rock formations and cliffs.
6. Canary Islands, Spain
There are seven Canary Islands and each one is an exquisite piece of volcanic formation created through different periods of planet’s development. La Gomera and La Palma are the youngest of the islands with green highlands perfect for hiking. Deep ravines situated on the sides of ancient volcanoes are a distinctive part of La Gomera, while La Palma is densely forested and surrounded by cliffs.
If you want to see the beauties of La Gomera, go on the Igualero to Vallehermoso trail which is a 13-mile long walk. This way you will go through the rainforest, see giant ferns and pass subtropical valleys which make La Gomera as amazing as it is. When it comes to La Palma, it offers a tough 10-mile trail called Ruta de la Cresteria and it will take for a walk on the Taburiente horseshoe.
Our planet has many beautiful islands ideal to travel on foot. Don’t be afraid to embrace the eco-friendly travel and allow to be swept off your feet by amazing natural beauties and experiences. The islands from this list are a good start for that.
About the Author:
Nina is a blogger, yoga aficionado and a travel enthusiast with a distinctive taste for home decor. She’s passionate about learning new things and sharing meaningful ideas. If you wanna see what she’s up to, you can find her on Twitter.