Some people run. Some people play golf. Some people like to wear weird masks and hit each other with sticks (that’s fencing right?) but for me, I love to hike. I love hiking! Here’s my top 5 reasons why hiking is awesome and you should go hiking!
I’m an adventure girl. My parents used to carry me on their backs when I was a baby, when they were traversing mountains years ago. My Dad has always been passionate about the hiking trails in the Peak District and hiking Scotland.
This passion didn’t fully activate in me until I travelled to South Korea to teach English. South Korea is 80% mountains and hiking Korea is a beautiful experience! I’d look out my window and the mountain would be right there…calling me. Soon enough, I was taking hiking trips almost every weekend. With it all in front of my nose, I quickly learnt why I love hiking so much.
There’s something about hiking where if you pass someone, it’s like greeting an old friend: ‘Hello!’ ‘Good morning!’ ‘Keep going!’ ‘You’re nearly there!’
I like to hike because people are just so nice when they’re walking up and down mountains. It’s the unspoken hiking rule that if you see someone, you’re gonna have to say hi.
For solo female travellers, hiking is definitely a good way to meet people. I recommend joining your local hiking groups to discover the most adventurous, beautiful hiking trails in your area and gain some hiking buddies.
Be prepared to venture far if you’re in the city. When I was hiking in China, I would take overnight trains on a Friday night to reach my hiking destination the next day.
I feel it’s worth travelling this far for a hike if you’re in the city. You can start to feel suffocated when you’re this far away from Mother Nature. If it hadn’t been for hiking at the weekends, I wouldn’t have managed to survive in Shanghai as long as I did.
Do you usually get down and shake your booty in a club with high heels, with glitzy sprinkles all over yourself? Screw that. You can party like it’s 1999 in a raincoat, with mud all over your face when you go for a hike. No-one cares what you look like because they’re covered in crap too.
All you need is wood to burn, questionable alcohol some dude on the mountain has brewed, some hiking sticks to throw in the air and a sound system with all of your batteries combined. You’ll have parties top DJs wish they were at.
Teacake has hiked in lots of different countries: when you’re cold/stupidly hot, hungry and it’s finally an acceptable time to stop and eat lunch, it’s the best feeling ever. Nuts taste so goddamn nutty. Apples just release the yummiest juices. Water has never felt so good running down your throat. Salty crackers are like caviar and if you’re hanging with Koreans, you’re gonna drink soju, get wacky and have a wail of a time.
Whether you’re hiking up the steps of the Eiffel Tower or pulling on your dear legs in the Himalayas, seeing something from a bird’s eye view is sweet. Life gets a whole lot better when you can see something from many different perspectives. Just when you thought you knew a place, seeing it from a different angle opens up a whole new world.
For me, hiking represents what life is all about. You need to work hard to get what you want. You need to put in time and effort. However tired you may feel or unsure what step to take next, you keep going. You keep going up and keep persevering because in the end, you’re gonna reach something really freaking cool. When you hit the top and you’re finished? You walk back down and plan your next amazing challenge. Always keep yourself challenged, push yourself and you will achieve the best you can.
What are the best places to go hiking?
I’ve been doing lots in China and having a blast! I’ve climbed the most dangerous trail in China, been on top of the world in Xingping and stood in a lifetime’s worth of whitey goodness at the Dragon’s Backbone Rice Terraces.