New research has revealed the top places to visit worldwide that burn the most calories. Experts have compiled the shortlist for fitness fanatics and those wishing for a calorie-burning, over-bulking holiday.
WeRoad, the world’s leading solo travel company, has revealed that a walking trip in the Scottish Highlands will burn approximately 1,500 active calories per day. This is pipped to the top with a trip to Peru, where you will burn 2,000 active calories daily hiking like Rainbow Mountain.
World’s top five calorie burning trips
- Peru, Rainbow Mountain – 25,000 steps and 2,000 calories daily
- Scotland, Scottish Highlands – 30,000 steps and 1,500 calories daily
- Patagonia, Laguna de la Torres – 20,000 steps and 1,400 calories daily
- Iceland, Vatnajokull – 16,000 steps and 1,300 calories daily
- Italy, Dolomites – 15,000 steps and 1,200 calories daily
(Steps and active calories burned per day based on average Brit)
The top five trips to stay trim were compiled considering the activity required to see famous landmarks and data on distance travelled, average daily steps taken, altitude, conditions and active calories burned for the average person.
So, say farewell to the all-you-can-eat inclusive buffet and the occasional exercise racing for an early morning sun bed, step out of your comfort zone and try one of these heart-racing vacations.
- Activity level: Intense
- Highlights: Colca Canyon, Rainbow Mountain, Lake Titicaca
- Activities: Hiking, trekking, kayaking
- Conditions: Cold, crisp, sunny
- Average daily steps: 25,000
- Average daily active kcals burned: 2,000
The physical effort to see the best that Peru has to offer is greater than most trips. Not only does it take some serious step counts to see its most stunning settings, but the considerable altitude – between 9,000 and 17,000 feet – makes it a challenge for any fitness level.
The Rainbow Mountain is located near Cuzco and is a real miracle of nature, only discovered a few years ago when the snow covering it melted. See llamas and alpacas as you hike to the summit for sweeping panoramic views of Rainbow Mountain and the Red Valley.
A day of high-altitude hiking will leave you breathless, with oxygen levels depleting the higher the hike gets. Following a three-hour hike, you must climb a steep, hard-packed dirt mountainside to get the classic view and reach its 17,060-foot summit – almost the same altitude as Everest Base Camp (17,598 feet). Expect to burn around 3,500 active calories on this hike alone.
Other “must dos” in Peru include a high-altitude trek of the Colca Canyon which, whilst it takes just 40 minutes to reach the summit above the Cruz del Condor, at 16,400 feet, is great practice for the hike of the Rainbow Mountains.
Lake Titicaca is the largest freshwater basin in South America and takes five hours to reach by foot. After a long walk, kayaking the lake is a must to add to that physical expenditure.
- Activity level: Moderate to Intense
- Highlights: Loch Shieldaig, coast-to-coast adventures
- Activities: Walking, kayaking, cycling
- Conditions: Mild, sunny
- Average daily steps: 30,000
- Average daily active kcals burned: 1,500
A coast-to-coast walk from Perth to Fort William – 118.5 miles – will surely get the heart pumping. The route, which can take ten days to complete, comprises hill and mountain tracks through woodland, forests, and moorland. You’ll come across riverside trails, minor roads and highland paths, all while taking breathtaking views.
For the keen cyclers, a 262-mile bike ride from Aberdeen on the east coast to Applecross on the west might be the ticket. It includes the UK’s highest (and probably most challenging) road climb at 17,000 feet, but the stunning scenery and an array of cultural experiences make up for all the huffing and puffing.
If walking or riding isn’t your thing, head to Loch Shieldaig for kayaking. The water here is so clear you can see the sea floor. As you explore this marvellous coastline, look out for the incredibly diverse sea life, including starfish, sea urchins, crabs and countless different types of fish.
- Activity level: Moderate
- Highlights: Mount Fitz Roy, Cerro Torre, El Calafate, Puerto Natales.
- Activities: Hiking, trekking
- Conditions: Cold, wet
- Average daily steps: 20,000
- Average daily active kcals burned: 1,400
Patagonia is home to many tall peaks, lakes, glaciers and forests. Some of the best treks will be on Mount Fitz Roy (11,171ft) and Cerro Torre (10,262 ft). A full-day trek to Laguna de la Torres at the foot of Mount Fitz Roy will see a standard holidaymaker hit over 16,000 steps – not bad.
El Calafate is widely known as the national capital of glaciers. A kayaking tour is the best option for the fit and adventurous, following an expert guide into the glacier’s interior and exploring the deep crevasses, waves and lagoons.
Biking through Puerto Natales is also a great way to take in the incredible combination of forest, mountains, glaciers and fjords. As you ride along the 12.4-mile route, the landscapes and colours will change as you follow the coast of the Ultima Esperanza fjord with views of the Moore Range, Whale Hill and Mount Pratt.
- Activity level: Moderate
- Highlights: Vatnajokull, Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss, Leirhnjúkur
- Activities: Snow trekking, walking
- Conditions: Crisp, cold
- Average daily steps: 16,000
- Average daily active kcals burned: 1,300
A non-negotiable for Iceland is visiting Europe’s largest glacier, Vatnajokull. Covering 6% of the country, the mesmerising glacial lagoon descending from the mountains and stretching to the beach is a sight. The best time to explore is at sunset or amid the night with the Northern Lights illuminating the sky.
At night, you can embark on an aurora hunting adventure, visiting unique points of interest such as the majestic waterfalls of Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss, the captivating Dyrholaey viewpoint, or the renowned Plane Wreck site. A snowy trek leads to a free thermal water pool, offering the perfect opportunity for a rejuvenating dip.
The lesser travelled Eastern Iceland is home to breathtaking waterfalls, fjords, and humble fishing villages and is also a great spot for trekking. Head to the other-worldly smoking lava fields of Leirhnjúkur and enjoy the geothermal mud pools, helping your muscles recover after a day’s trek.
- Activity level: Light to Moderate
- Highlights: Cortina d’Ampezzo, Tre Cime di Lavaredo, Mt Elmo
- Activities: Hiking, walking
- Conditions: Mild, rainy
- Average daily steps: 15,000
- Average daily active kcals burned: 1,200
One of the most famous mountain towns in Italy is Cortina d’Ampezzo. A top destination for many celebs, professional athletes and nature lovers, this is the perfect spot to be mesmerised by the beauty of the Dolomites whilst smashing the step count.
Starting from the Auronzo Retreat at 7,874ft, Tre Cime di Lavaredo is a breathtaking 5.6-mile (11,800 steps) panoramic walk around these majestic peaks. With mostly flat terrain and occasional gentle slopes, it’s suitable for all fitness levels and makes the picnic taste better afterwards.
A ridge walk along the Italian/Austrian border and ascending Mt Elmo at 7,985 feet has several bunkers and look-out posts from World War I, allowing hikers to take a cheesy photo with a foot in each country.