Backpacking is something that many people will consider at some point in their lives. Though usually an activity associated with those over-enthusiastic psychology student types who have clearly never experienced a punch to the face, the concept of backpacking extends far beyond. From mature professionals seeking a career sabbatical to elderly folk looking to milk the most from life having retired- getting out of your home environment and adventuring to a distant corner of the world could be just the thing you’ve been looking for. Here’s a look at some of the most hotly tipped destinations for backpackers as of 2013.
Probably the first country that comes to mind upon the mention of word ‘backpacking’, Australia has been a constantly popular destination for people from all creeds and backgrounds for many decades. Boasting some of the most surreal landscapes on Earth, the country enjoys a reputation as a bearer of all fruits. From sunny (reeeeeally sunny) beaches to dense forest and of course the thousands upon thousands of square miles of unmistakable (outback), a backpacker could really lose themselves here. With so much to see and do, an outrageous array of unique (and mostly deadly) wildlife and pretty much year round sunshine- there’s a reason so many people head to Oz.
Perhaps a little less obvious, Peru has been picking up trade from a traveller or two for a fair few years now. Home to not only the infamous lost city of the Incas ‘Machu Picchu’ amongst other mind-blowing archaeological sites, this South American nation has much to offer and caters for a whole host of interests. From the adrenaline junkies to the lazy-day beach types- there is much to be explored in Peru, and probably for half the price of Australia too.
Huge and isolated in the North West of the American continent, the US state of Alaska possesses beauty and formidability in equal measure. For those of you who’ve seen the movie ‘Into The Wild’ you should know exactly what I’m getting at. With the perilous combination of sheer, raw natural beauty but a landscape and climate that seem particularly good at killing people- Alaska is a destination for the level headed and mature backpacker.
A huge nation which as I’m sure you all know sits atop the USA, Canada differs from its southern neighbour quite vastly. Remaining a British colony up until the late 19th/early 20th century- the nation and its people offer a lot to visitors. Some parts speak English and some French, the landscape stretches not only for over 5,000 miles sea to sea- but from dense Bear infested woodland to arctic glaciers to sun drenched beach. Surely you’ll find a thing or two to keep yourself occupied?
Though tiny, minuscule even- Belize packs one hell of a punch in terms of tourist attraction. Located to the North East of Guatemala and South of Mexico, Belize is only around 9,000 square miles in size. Despite its modest capacity however, the nation has become a renowned destination for backpackers in recent years as a result of the natural beauty it offers. Mostly covered in dense forest and possessing its own barrier reef (second only to the Great Barrier Reef), if you like picturesque landscapes and the company of a relaxed and friendly people- Belize may be worth looking into.