Our top Instagram shots of 2021

Aletsch Glacier – one of our top Instagram shots of 2021

From the Throne of Zeus to the largest glacier in the Alps, we share our top Instagram shots of 2021

Unsurprisingly, travel in 2021 turned out to be more, uhm, domestic than we had planned. After the disappointments of 2020, we had high hopes for 2021. Alas, it turns out that pandemics are unpredictable. We did manage to squeeze in a couple of international trips, but they were definitely more short than long haul.

20 most beautiful mountains in the USA

Most beautiful mountains in America: Maroon BellsZhukova Valentyna/Shutterstock

The most beautiful mountains in the US are a contentious subject, for this is a land that brims with beauty. We scoured the states and whittled them down to a list of 20

Legendary climber​​ Reinhold Messner said that there are three rules of mountaineering: “It’s always further than it looks. It’s always taller than it looks. And it’s always harder than it looks.” 

Ranked: best countries for adventure travel

Tourists inside an ice cave in IcelandZhukova Valentyna/Shutterstock

The best countries for adventure travel have been ranked by a panel of experts. We review the results below

The Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) has named Iceland the best country for adventure travel for the third year in a row. The small Nordic island nation, famed for its geysers, volcanoes, geothermal lagoons and cinematic landscapes, remains an attractive destination for adventure seekers, particularly those concerned with sustainability.

11 Christmas gifts for travellers

Our annual list of 10 Christmas gifts for travellers, be they bookworms, shutterbugs, adrenaline junkies or culture vultures

This year was going to be the year that life went back to normal. Instead, we found ourselves in a strange liminal space of sullied plans and half lives. Some valiantly tried to reclaim their lives – Peter, for example, managed trips to Switzerland, Greece and Cyprus – but many more of us wilted into this new reality, like trees skewed by persistent wind.   

Winter hiking: 6 tips to get you started

winter hiking featuredEmerald_media/Shutterstock

Winter hiking without experience is taxing at best and lethal at worst. We share some tips to help you prepare properly

Winter hiking is a polarising sport: some love it, others hate it. Too often, people have bad experiences not because they’re inherently resistant to cold, but because they’re under-prepared. They make not just basic mistakes like packing the wrong gear but also arrive mentally unprepared.

How to start a travel blog – a professional guide

a laptop, camera and bag for how to start a travel blog

A comprehensive but concise guide on how to start a travel blog, covering both technical and editorial aspects of creating, maintaining and growing a blog

At Atlas & Boots, we are periodically approached for advice on how to start a travel blog. To help future bloggers, we have put our knowledge into a comprehensive but concise guide below.

How to prevent and treat blisters when hiking

How to prevent blisters when hiking lead image

Don’t let a pesky injury ruin your time in the outdoors. Our guide on how to prevent blisters will keep you on your feet

Whether you’re an experienced trekker or a newcomer to the trails, you will invariably suffer from one of the most common hiking injuries. To help you minimise the risk, we’ve put together a simple guide on how to prevent and treat blisters when hiking.

Virgin peaks: the world’s unclimbed mountains

unclimbed mountains Mount KailashDreamstime

The world’s unclimbed mountains are the last great challenges in mountaineering. We look at the most coveted of these unconquered summits

In January 2021, Nirmal Purja and his team of Nepali climbers completed the first winter ascent of K2, the world’s second-highest mountain. K2 was the final 8,000m peak awaiting a winter ascent after Nanga Parbat, Pakistan’s ‘Killer Mountain’, was scaled in 2016.

Best mountaineering books: 27 great reads

lead image of climber for best mountaineering books 2021Vixit/Shutterstock

Updated for 2021, we list the best mountaineering books ever written, drawing on accounts of world-class climbers in the harshest environments

As I’ve mentioned many times before, my bookshelves are filled with tales of adventure travel, survival against the odds and obsessive searches.

I’m an avid climber keen on winter mountaineering and wild camping so, naturally, mountaineering books take up a good chunk of space on my shelf.

Altitude sickness symptoms and how to avoid them

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Being young, fit and healthy doesn’t mean you won’t suffer from altitude sickness symptoms. Here’s how to identify, treat and prevent them effectively

Gracie is a student at Johns Hopkins, which offers one of the best medical training programs in the world. She is slim, fit and active. She doesn’t smoke, rarely drinks and always watches what she eats.

Ranked: most peaceful countries in the world 2021

map of the most peaceful countries in the world 2021Vision of Humanity

The most peaceful countries in the world have been updated for 2021. Read our insights from the study and browse the rankings below

Iceland is once again the most peaceful country in the world followed by New Zealand, Denmark, Portugal, and Slovenia.

However, the world is a less peaceful place as civil unrest and political instability has increased due to the global pandemic according to the latest Global Peace Index (GPI) report.

How to use a compass and map: a simple guide

how to use a compass and map feat img(c) Schlenger86 | Dreamstime.com

This guide on how to use a compass and map should be enough to get you started and give you the confidence to use the skills for yourself in the hills

As a schoolboy, I was lucky to learn how to use a compass and map. I then spent the best part of two decades putting these basic skills to use throughout the British countryside, without ever really having them tested.

How to choose a sleeping bag: a buying guide

How to choose a sleeping bag

Our comprehensive guide on how to choose a sleeping bag will ensure a cosy night’s sleep whatever the temperature

Whether you’re a weekend warrior making a dash for the hills or preparing for a multi-day trek through the Himalayas, choosing the right sleeping bag can make or break a camping trip.

30 most beautiful mountains in the world

Ama Dablam is a thing of beautyDaniel Prudek/Shutterstock

The most beautiful mountains in the world have captivated climbers for centuries. Here, we examine their lethal appeal

“You are not in the mountains. The mountains are in you,” said John Muir, the renowned naturalist, author and environmental philosopher.

If our resident seven-summit hopeful is anything to go by, Muir makes a valid point. Those who spend time in the mountains seem to be driven by a deeper force.

Why I’ve given up eating fish (again)

Kia has vowed to give up eating fishRudmer Zwerver/Shutterstock

At the age of 13, Kia turned vegetarian but 15 years later, she started eating fish again. Here she reflects on why that decision was wrong

There is an inherent hypocrisy in what I do for a living. On one hand, I write about the state of the planet, call for tourism caps and grapple with extinction tourism, but on the other, I continue to fly when I know that it’s the worst way to travel in terms of carbon emissions. 

How to escape a wildfire: a hiker’s guide

With fire season fast approaching, we’ve updated our guide on how to escape a wildfire, inspired by Peter’s close call in Greenland

When Peter headed to Greenland last summer to trek the Arctic Circle Trail, I knew he’d be unreachable for 7-10 days. He’s a highly experienced hiker, but there was a tiny part of me that couldn’t help but worry.

How to choose a down jacket

how to choose a down jacket lead imageAtlas & Boots

A beginner’s guide on how to choose a down jacket that will keep you warm and toasty in the great outdoors

A high-quality down jacket is no longer the preserve of the outdoorsy. Politicians, pop stars and even princesses have been pictured in a ‘puffa’. Of course, a down jacket truly comes into its own when used and tested in the great outdoors. 

Ranked: happiest countries in the world 2021

happiest countries in the world 2021 mapCreated with Datawrapper

Finland tops the rankings of the happiest countries in the world for the fourth year running

Happiness is a nebulous thing; hard to grasp and harder to hold onto. Scientists, economists and philosophers have defined it through the ages as a combination of different things, among them health, wealth, companionship and security.