The Best “out there” treks in the world

Trekking the foothills of Nepal | Lachlan Gardiner
Trekking the foothills of Nepal | Lachlan Gardiner

Want to really get away from it all and head to places where you can find yourself, and no one else? Disconnect from the day-to-day and reconnect with the natural world on one of our top remote treks of all time.

From Africa’s third highest peak to the Australian outback, there are so many exciting walking and trekking opportunities for those of you who love to explore your world on foot. And just because they are remote, doesn’t mean they are all beyond your capability; there’s a remote walk for every keen walker.

All treks are graded, so you can quickly tell if they might be suitable for you. Remember, we started in Nepal, so our version of an 'introductory' trek might be classified as 'challenging' by other companies that do not specialise in walking or trekking.

Following our sustainable BIG adventures small footprint travel philosophy, we’ve built a strong heritage in pioneering treks and walks since 1975. Which one of the amazing treks below will you do next?

1. Gokyo Lakes & Renjo La in Nepal

Duration: 17 days (13 days trekking)
Grading: moderate to challenging (6)
Ideal for: active travellers who want to try a different trail to the popular Everest Base Camp trek
When to go: February to mid-May, End of September to December

Sunrise at Gokyo Ri

Want to avoid the busier trails in the Everest region? And yes, it can get busy!

The 13-day Gokyo Lakes trek travels through Sherpa villages to the stunning turquoise Gokyo Lakes and crosses the Renjo La (5,400m) on a rarely trodden trail.

The first few days takes you across the aqua waters of the Dudh Kosi, through the gates of Sagamartha National Park, and onto a spectacular high bridge before commencing an ascent to the village of Namche Bazaar, the Sherpa "capital" of Nepal. Here, you gain your first sight of Mount Everest, but it's a tough climb through the pine forests.

Happy trekkers atop of Gokyo Ri, Nepal |  <i>Scott Cardwell</i>

Moving onto the trail towards Gokyo, you'll see fewer trekkers and locals and the relative isolation of the trail is a pleasure. Ranked by our staff as the best trek in the Everest region, this adventure offers a grandstand view of the Himalaya's 8,000 metre peaks. On the ascent to Gokyo Ri, get one of the best views of Everest and surrounding mountains, including Cho Oyu in Tibet.

But the trip isn't over yet; the crossing of the Renjo La Pass will be an exhilarating challenge where you will descend into a stunning remote northern valley on an ancient trading route where there's a chance to meet Tibetan traders with their caravans of woolly yaks laden with goods, the only "traffic" you'll come across.

After an even more epic trek? The Great Himalaya Trail, exclusive to World Expeditions, is the world's longest and highest alpine walking track which traverses the full length of Nepal. Conquer the full trail (150 days) or trek a section (18-34 days).

2. Larapinta Trail End to End in Australia

Duration: 14 days
Grading: moderate to challenging (6)
Ideal for: wilderness lovers and seasoned walkers after a challenge
When to go: mid-April to August

One of Australia's most iconic walks, the complete traverse of the Larapinta follows the backbone of the West MacDonnell range, in Central Australia, over 223 kilometres. Trek through this semi-arid region on remote ridges and canyons; experience true wilderness camping under a canopy of stars in the Outback; and climb Mount Sonder, one of the Northern Territory's highest peaks, to welcome a beautiful sunrise that'll be etched in your memory for a lifetime.

Deemed one of the greatest desert treks in the world, this trek is not for the faint-hearted, where you'll be walking up to 30 kilometres on some days. However, our fully supported camping-based trek means that you'll only need to carry a day pack (carrying around 5-7 litres of water, plus your own personal items), with luggage transferred between campsites for you, and all meals (that's three hearty meals a day) are prepared fresh by our cooks. So, all you need to focus on is achieving your trekking goal.

The Larapinta Trail follows the rocky spine of the West MacDonnel Ranges |  <i>Shaana McNaught</i>

3. K2 Base camp, Concordia & Gondogora La in Pakistan

Duration: 24 days (16 days trekking)
Grading: entry level mountaineering/ exploratory trekking (8)
Ideal for: those who are looking to get into mountaineering, or who are looking to take on a challenging trek
When to go: June to August

Heading up the Baltoro Glacier towards Concordia, G4 and Broad Peak |  <i>Soren Kruse Ledet</i>

One of our finest high-altitude scenic treks, our Ultimate K2 expedition traverses from the famous Baltoro Glacier, to the "Throne Room of the Mountain Gods" and to the foot of the world's second highest mountain.

Pakistan's legendary trek has captured the imagination of trekkers and mountaineers for decades, with a 360-degree panorama of 7,000 metre and 8,000 metre peaks, including the impressive K2.

4. The Southern Alps in New Zealand

Duration: 7 days
Grading: moderate (5)
Ideal for: anyone looking to head for heights
When to go: November to April

Trekking in remote alpine tarns with unspoiled views from above, this adventure has even been undertaken as a warm up for a walking trip in the Himalayas.

Trekkers on Buchanan peak with Mount Aspiring behind, walking above Matukituki valley, near Lake Wanaka |  <i>Colin Monteath</i>

Taking travellers on paths where everyone else stops, our exhilarating 6-day hike boasts dramatic backdrops of New Zealand's highest peak, Aoraki/Mount Cook, travelling in some of the most secluded ridges in the Southern Alps. Stay overnight in a backcountry hut with stunning views of the Mackenzie Basin and enjoy panoramic views from Lake Ohau Lodge overlooking the glistening alpine lake.

The highlight of the trip? A helicopter flight that drops you within the mighty Southern Alps with sweeping views of Lake Wanaka and Mount Aspiring.

5. Mountains of the Moon in Uganda

Duration: 13 days (10 days trekking)
Grading: entry level mountaineering/ exploratory trekking (8)
Ideal for: those who've ticked off Mt Kilimanjaro from their bucket list and are looking for their next summit challenge
When to go: December to February, June to September

Rarely visited and isolated, the Rwenzori Mountains (or Mountains of the Moon) are Africa's best kept secret.

We take a more remote and specially developed trail through the Rwenzori mountain range on the Kilembe Trail – we are one of the very few that have permits for this route. Traversing the Stanley range, we take in the most beautiful scenery of the national park with diverse climactic zones starting in montane rainforest home to plenty of monkeys, into the bamboo forest, then towards moorland with giant lobelias, and finally into the alpine zone, going higher than other groups.

The 10-day trek includes a challenging ascent of Margherita Peak (5,109m), Africa's third highest peak, where muddy terrain, difficult summit conditions with snow and ice, and variable weather are to be anticipated.

From tropical rainforests to glaciers, trekking in Uganda's spectacular Mountains of the Moon is the perfect trip for those after a challenge with varied scenery and is guaranteed to go with a minimum of two travellers.

6. Snowman Trek in Bhutan

Duration: 27 days (23 days trekking)
Grading: exploratory trekking (8)
Ideal for: anyone looking for a very challenging trek that ventures far off the beaten track
When to go: September to November

Take on the ultimate traverse of Bhutan crossing 11 high passes over 4,500 metres through the secluded Lunana region.

Trekking in spectacular alpine conditions on the Bhutan Snowman Trek |  <i>Soren Kruse Ledet</i>

Following trails past yak herders' encampments and isolated farming settlements, you'll trek the mountainous spine of Bhutan amid a constant backdrop of 7,000 metre peaks. It's our toughest and remotest trek in Bhutan and ranks among the very finest anywhere in the Himalaya, making it one to add to your adventure list.

This trek of a lifetime also travels to the beautiful Paro Valley where you'll discover a region of tiny Buddhist monasteries and secluded villages that are isolated from the rest of the country for many months of the year.

7. Pamir Fann Mountains in Tajikstan

Duration: 14 days (5 days trekking)
Grading: moderate (5)
Ideal for: those wanting to take their bushwalking adventures up a notch while incorporating historical and architectural sightseeing 
When to go: June to September

This remote mountain adventure combines an impressive trek in the Pamir Fann Mountains with historical and cultural sightseeing in the Silk Road cities of Tashkent, Samarkand and Bukhara.

Renowned for its unique mountain landscapes and its strikingly beautiful alpine lakes, this rugged trek in the untouched areas of Pamir enters deep valleys with crystal clear lakes and flowering meadows. You might even see the summer camps of the Tijiki shepherds.

Breathtaking views across Alauddin Lakes and the surrounding valley |  <i>Natalie Tambolash</i>

Crossing a string of passes linking isolated valleys, including the Alauddin Pass (3,530m), you are rewarded with views of the ranges that stretch far into Central Asia and the south.

Completing your trek, you'll return to Tashkent before transferring to Samarkand to marvel at the intricate mosques and palaces of the great Tamerlane rule, as well as visit the 2,500-year-old desert city of Bukhara which boasts amazing archaeological sites, intriguing museums and vibrant bazaars. You'll also travel through the Kyzylkum Desert where more than 4,000 petroglyphs dot the slopes of the Sarmysh River before arriving at a traditional yurt campsite.

8. Huayhuash Circuit in Peru

Duration: 19 days (12 days trekking and 2 acclimatisation day walks)
Grading: moderate to challenging (6)
Ideal for: active travellers with multi-day trekking experience and who want to experience the lesser visited side of Peru
When to go: May or September

Experience some of the best trekking in South America on a challenging 165km circuit around the Cordillera Huayhuash in Northern Peru.

It was in this region that the epic mountaineering story of Joe Simpson's Siula Grande ascent – recounted in his book 'Touching the void' – took place, and is an unrivalled corner of the Andes that offers an ever-changing backdrop of soaring snow-capped peaks, cascading glaciers and the chance to experience indigenous communities.

Huayhuash, Peru |  <i>Ken Harris</i>

Highlights include camping in tranquil locations near azure glacial lakes and alpine meadows, a side trip to Siula Grande Base Camp and the incredible views at the top of Cerro Bella Vista.

There are endless photo opportunities on the Huayhuash Circuit, including the distinctive needle-like peak of Jirishanca and the impressive summit of Yerupaja at 6640m.

Yerupaja Peak in the Huayhuash range |  <i>Matej Mejovsek</i>

9. Tavan Bogd in Mongolia

Duration: 11 days (4 days trekking)
Grading: moderate (5)
Ideal for: anyone seeking to explore untracked wilderness and authentic nomadic culture
When to go: June to August

Geographically, this is the remotest part of Mongolia with true pristine nature, abundant wildlife and fascinating cultural heritage. Witness a treasure trove of human history with many ancient burials and rock art to explore. You'll also encounter local herders, bactrian camels, Kazakh eagle hunters and throat-singing Tuvan people, and learn about the nomadic culture which calls it home.

Trekking towards the Most Pass in the Altai Tavan Bogd National Park, Mongolia. |  <i>Alan and Julie Marshall</i>

Trek beneath snowy peaks and discover the remote reaches of the Tavan Bogd massif (or "The Five Holy") with vistas of West Mongolia's highest peaks. This stunning trek remains virtually unexplored, travelling along enormous V-shaped mountain valleys with small rivers streaming from glaciers that cover the mountain tops.

The vast, remote and rugged landscapes of Western Mongolia is an adventure seeker's paradise where you'll experience true wilderness as you comfortably camp under a star-filled sky that will feel infinite.

10. Great Patagonian Traverse in Chile

Duration: 15 days (9 days trekking)
Grading: moderate (5)
Ideal for: wilderness lovers and hiking enthusiasts
When to go: Between December and February

Follow the spine of the Andes through Patagonia's spectacular wilderness as you combine the spectacular ‘W’ Trek in Torres del Paine National Park with a remote exploration of the northern part of the park.

You'll cross a unique route linking Chile and Argentina to reach some of the most captivating and untouched national parks in the region, from the Southern Icecap to the towers of Paine, which offers a side of Patagonia rarely seen by other trekkers.

A trek in Patagonia will replenish the soul |  <i>Sue Badyari</i>

Highlights include a lodge stay at Puerto Guadal, where the lake gives way to a breathtaking mountain vista beyond compare; a boat ride with the Southern Patagonian Icefield in your midst; marvelling at the granite spires including Cerro Torre and Cerro Fitz Roy at Los Glaciares National Park; and forays to the Grey Glacier, up the French Valley and the Ascensio Valley before ascending to the base of Torres del Paine.

Our remote wilderness expertise has been honed over 45+ years of seeking out and developing unique experiences in remote places. Discover more 'off the beaten track' treks and hikes to suit different levels of fitness and experiences.

exploratory trek, fann mountains, hiking, Nepal, pamir, tajikstan, trekking, Uzbekistan, wilderness, worlds best treks, best treks in the world, remote treks, Australia walks, Bhutan treks, Nepal treks, Mongolia treks, Uganda treks, Pamirs treks, New Zealand walks, huayhuash circuit in peru, remote trekking in peru

Comments (3)

Dan Dieck

Would like to do the 3 easiest of this treks. Terrific article👍👍👍

2 years ago
Sam Smith

Great article. Thanks for sharing this beautiful article with us. Keep it up!

5 years ago
Sérgio Marques

Nice recomendations

6 years ago
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