Few things speak of dedication and determination like standing on top of a mountain peak, but most of us tend to think of such achievements as well out of our reach. However, there are many stunning mountains around the world that you can conquer with little to no experience and just a wee bit of fitness – meaning you could be proudly standing on the summit of a majestic peak sometime soon… These are some of the best:
Africa’s tallest peak and one of the best known mountains in the world, Kilimanjaro isn’t a technically difficult climb but will still take some time and determination. The incline is mostly gentle but altitude plays a big role here, meaning that instead of a mad dash to the top, most visitors will take between 5 and 8 days to reach the apex.
Situated 70km southwest of Mexico City, this dormant volcano is over 5,000m high and can be seen from Mexico’s capital on a clear day. It’s said to look like a sleeping woman, with Aztec legends claiming it was a young maiden who died of grief. Most climbers take La Arista del Sol, The Ridge of the Sun, which trails over the feet, knees and belly, before cresting her… twin peaks.
Perhaps the most photographed mountain of all time, climbing Mount Fuji has become something of an international cultural phenomenon. It’s a full day hike, though not a difficult one. Just be certain to avoid Japan’s peak tourist season, as the once forbidden holy mountain is thronged with visitors for much of the year.
4. Mauna Kea
This, not Everest, is Earth’s tallest mountain, coming to almost twice the size of the Himalayan peak – it’s just that most of Mauna Kea is below sea level. Still, over 4,000m of it rises above sea level providing a stunning 360 degree view of Hawaii and the Pacific Ocean. Take your time, as altitude sickness can be a factor, but the spectacular sights from the top make it all worth it.
There’s a little bit of risk involved in climbing Etna, seeing as it is an active volcano. Ash, lava and noxious gas are all a factor especially at lower altitudes, but they aren’t hard to avoid. The ascent is well within the reach of a day trip and definitely worth the effort. After all, how many people can say they’ve been to the top of a legendary active volcano?