Ascending to the top of a mountain is one thing, but there’s something truly magical about trekking through a beautiful valley. Have you visited any of these?
With a name like ‘Valley of Flowers,’ it’s hard to imagine this destination being anything but beautiful. The Valley of Flowers National Park sits in the state of Uttarakhand in the West Himalaya, and if you’ve ever wanted to see sprawling meadows of colourful flowers, this is the place to go.
Bears, leopards and bharal also populate the area, which is surrounded by the gorgeous mountains of the Nanda Devi National Park.
Photo © Vidar Karlsen
Much of Slovenia’s natural landscape is stunning, and in the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, the Logar Valley in the country’s north is remotely magnificent. Postcard-perfect mountains surround this glacial alpine valley, which contains everything from lush green pastures to quaint farm cottages.
Exquisite vineyards, tumbling mountains and a winding river make the Douro Valley in northern Portugal one of the most gorgeous places to visit.
Other than following the landscape of the river and treating yourself to a few wine tastings, other highlights in Douro include the Archaeological Park, the Alvão Natural Park, the waterfall of Agarez and the churches and shrines of the town of Lamego.
When a valley is named after the Viking God of Thunder (Thor), there’s a good chance it’s going to be an amazing destination.
Set between two glaciers in southern Iceland and featuring its own winding river (the Krossá), Thórsmörk Valley is a must if you love a good hike.
You’ll glimpse glaciers, waterfalls, caves and boulders along the way, though bear in mind that if you go in Autumn or Spring, you’ll need to access the valley in a 4WD.
Banff is one of the best spots in the world for skiing, attracting over 3 million visitors each year. By following the Moraine Lake Road, you’ll find the magnificent Valley of the Ten Peaks.
For marvellous panoramic views of the peaks, take the trail to the Eiffel Lake or the Larch Valley. Don’t forget your camera!
Most of us go to Hawaii for the beaches, but on your next trip, we recommend visiting this valley. The Waipio is located on Hawaii’s Big Island in the Hamakua region, and is only accessible by foot or 4WD.
Lush, green scenery, 600-metre cliffs and bubbling brooks make this place as a slice of paradise. If you want to swim or surf, check out the black sand beach along the valley’s coastline.
Up in the state of Washington near the Canadian Border, the Skagit Valley blooms into vibrancy each April thanks to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival.
Reminiscent of those famous fields in the Netherlands, the yearly tulip fest has been in full swing since 1984 and a drive through the valley and its surrounds is the best way to see all that the event has to offer.
Other fun activities in the Skagit encompass kayaking, canoeing, skiing and whale watching.
If you prefer your valleys to be filled with glorious chateaus and to-die-for vineyards, the Loire Valley, which rests alongside the dazzling Loire River in central France (about 3 hours from Paris), is the place for your next holiday.
The Château de Chenonceau, the Château de Chambord, the Château de Villandry and the Château d’Amboise are all must-sees in the Loire (amongst a bundle of other cathedrals, abbeys and castles).
Life-changing adventure and untouched beauty are what you’ll discover on any tour through the Nam Ou River Valley in Laos. A tributary of the Mekong River, the Nam Ou – which means ‘Rice Bowl’ – offers everything from mountain scenery to mysterious Pak Ou Caves and traditional riverside villages.
Boat cruises are the best way to get through this valley, though kayaking and trekking options are also available.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Great Rift Valley is one of Kenya’s most superb spots, with gorgeous wildlife (including rhinos, lions, giraffes and flamingos), exquisite lakes and mudflats, and fascinating volcanoes to boot.
A visit to this destination is an incredible way to get in touch with nature as we often don’t know it, and luckily for us, plenty of accommodation is available in the region.
junaidrao, Kdhenrik, Vidar Karlsen, Marco Varisco, Chmee2, edwademd, leswilliamsphotography, sea-turtle, djimison, 松岡明芳, ninara