Spending time in nature is one of the best ways to reset and clear your mind, and hiking to tall peaks and enjoying sweeping views is a wonderful way to challenge yourself while enjoying nature. Whether you're looking for a light and easy hike or a truly challenging peak with a line shorter than that of Everest, these five mountains will fulfill your alpine cravings.
Maglic, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Sutjeska National Park to the southeast border of Bosnia and Herzegovina is home to the country's tallest peak, Maglic, which it shares with neighboring Montenegro. Standing at 2,388 meters or 7,828 feet, the hike to the peak is long and steep. Even with calves screaming, the last few steps up the via ferrata and onto the summit are all made worthwhile once the view of the surrounding landscape comes into sight. Maglic is just one peak along the Dinaric Alps, which stretch for hundreds of kilometers and are connected with a network of trails known as the Via Dinarica. A reasonable to good level of fitness are required to summit this mountain, but the mountain and other surrounding trails work well for a multi-day hike.
Rigi is located just outside of picturesque Lucerne and can be reached with a quick train trip from the city center. This easy hike is perfect for a light walk on a paved path. Anyone can do this hike thanks to its accessibility and options for reaching the summit such as walking or taking a funicular if needed. From the perch, enjoy drinking in a beautiful view of the city below and perhaps take a dip in the spa pools at the summit.
Bobotov Kuk Kuk, Montenegro
Another mountain peak along the Dinaric mountains and on the Via Dinarica trail network, Bobotov Kuk Kuk is the highest peak in Durmitor National Park. Though there are many stunning hikes in this national park, Bobotov Kuk Kuk, standing at 2,523 meters or 8,278 feet, is the one to bag as the best in the country. Climb craggy rocks and pass through sections of open scree on the ascent to the top where wide vistas of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania and much of Montenegro come into view. Amble down the mountain among grassy meadows on earthen paths that prove to be much easier hiking that the pockets of loose scree. Don't forget to sign in at the guest box at the summit.
Roan Mountain, North Carolina, USA
North Carolina's Roan Mountain is a great opportunity to stretch your legs and test your abilities for the Appalachian Trail. This hike can be adapted from one to seven miles as an out and back, moderate hike. Vibrant colors mark the trail thanks to the natural gardens of Catawba rhododendrons and mountain laurel. Pass through forests of spruce, fir and hemlock trees and small grassy meadows. The ridgeline rocks along for about five miles reaching a high point of 1,916 meters or 6,286 feet.
The Matterhorn, Switzerland and Italy
The Matterhorn might be the best and most challenging alternative to Everest itself. Often used as a training mountain for climbers hoping to summit Everest, the Matterhorn is the among the tallest peaks in Europe at 4,478 meters or 14,692 feet. Whether your approach stems from Italy or Switzerland, as the mountain peak straddles both countries, the view from the top will be stunning regardless.