Happiest countries in the world 2021 – ranked

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.

20 best hiking apps to download in 2021

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We take a look at the best hiking apps currently available and which ones best meet your needs be they trip planning, navigation or first aid.

Hiking apps never used to feature in my outdoor adventures, but times have changed. Now, every Ordnance Survey map comes with a digital version available to download onto my smartphone or tablet.

Highlander Adventure treks: 15 unique trails to explore

The ring-shaped rock formation of Hajdučka Vrata (Outlaw’s Gate) on ČvrsnicaMirnes Ibrahimagic/Shutterstock

The collection of Highlander Adventure treks has been expanded for 2021. We take a look at the exciting new trails on offer

In 2020, I joined my first Highlander Adventure trek in Croatia and was thoroughly won over by the semi-solo style of trekking. This year, I was pleased to see the collection expand from five treks to 15 and am planning (hoping?) to join two more – in Spain and North Macedonia.

Q&A: Climbing every mountain in the Yorkshire Dales

Descending Calf Top after climbing every mountain in the Yorkshire Dales

Between lockdowns, I wrapped up a challenge that started nearly two years ago: climbing every mountain in the Yorkshire Dales National Park

Just over a year ago, I was stood atop Aconcagua, the highest mountain in South America and the highest outside of Asia. It was my third – arguably fourth – peak of the seven summits. As I descended the scree slopes, I was in high spirits and full of optimism for the year ahead.

Which country has the cleanest air in the world?

Map of the world featuring the resultsIQAir

The countries with the cleanest air in the world have been ranked in a new report. We take a look at the results

The island nation of the Bahamas has the world’s cleanest air according to the latest World Air Quality Report by IQAir. The report ranks 98 countries and territories by the level of fine particulate matter present in the air.

The layering system: how to layer clothing for the outdoors

layering system lead

Now that spring is finally on the horizon, we’ve updated our guide to the layering system and how best to adapt your clothing to suit any outdoor condition

Springtime is almost upon us and with it come the capricious weather conditions that define the season. Mark Twain once said, “In the spring I have counted one hundred and thirty-six kinds of weather inside of four and twenty hours.”

England’s 100 most popular hiking trails

Buttermere Fell is home to some of the most popular hiking trails in EnglandAndy Sykes/Shutterstock

From the South Downs to Hadrian’s Wall, we explore England’s most popular hiking trails

Whether you’re an experienced hiker in need of fresh ideas or a first-timer hoping to get outdoors more, our list of England’s most popular hiking trails offers a wealth of options.

Our top Instagram shots of 2020

top Instagram shots of 2020

From playful puffins to daunting peaks, we share our top 10 Instagram shots of 2020

Kia has already written about how 2020 has been, uhm, testing to say the least. The year began with great promise, as you will see below, but it wasn’t long before all our trips got cancelled or postponed.

Hiking in Latvia: where to find the best trails

Boardwalks through ĶemeriSanga Park/Shutterstock

Hiking in Latvia is an ideal way to explore a land of peaceful lakes, fairytale forests and exceptionally unspoilt countryside

Latvia is perhaps best known for the cosmopolitan city of Riga. Beyond the clamorous capital, however, lie delightful small towns like Cēsis and Sigulda that offer hiking, cycling, canoeing and myriad other outdoor adventures.

The 77 most inspirational travel quotes ever penned

Borobudur in IndonesiaPambudi Yoga Perdana/Shutterstock

Our favourite inspirational travel quotes that encouraged us to travel – with abandon – over the years. Maybe they will do the same for you…

For us, there is no such thing as luxury travel; travel is, by default, a luxury. It is a privilege provided by the country of our birth, a privilege that many are not as fortunate to enjoy.

Sometimes, we have to pinch ourselves at just how ridiculous our lives have become: an ex-teacher and jobbing writer travelling the world for a living. It is absurd, it is astonishing, and it is a luxury.

Best hiking trails in every US state (according to hikers)

best hiking trails in every US state lead imageEdmund Lowe Photography/Shutterstock

We share the three best hiking trails in every US state, according to America’s most popular hiking app

The US knows how to do wilderness. Wedged between the two great oceans of the world, it is home to practically every landscape under the sun. Beaches, lakes, mountains, rainforest, deserts, canyons and glaciers all rise and fall across this continent-sized country. And thanks to the outstanding National Park Service, huge swathes of it are readily accessible.

Unknown treks in Asia: 10 offbeat trails

From remote corners of Bhutan to the lofty heights of Nepal, we profile some of the best unknown treks in Asia

When it comes to exploration, ‘too late for the seas, too soon for the stars’ may best describe our current times. Legendary explorers like Drake and Magellan charted the seas long ago while Scott, Shackleton, Amundsen and their like did the same for remote lands. 

Best hikes in South Korea: 8 stunning trails

Naejangsan in autumn is one of the best hikes in South Korea NaejangsanTRAVEL TAKE PHOTOS/Shutterstock

The best hikes in South Korea offer a portrait of idyllic countryside as well as 5,000 years of distinctive culture and history

Mountain culture runs deep through the history of South Korea. Thousands of years before modern religion made its way onto the peninsula, Koreans worshipped mountain spirits known as Sansin. Today, much of the population remains strongly connected to mountains, albeit in a different way.

How to choose a tent: a buying guide

How to choose a tent a buying guideAtlas & Boots

Our comprehensive guide on how to choose a tent will ensure dry and comfortable nights whatever the weather

If you ask me, time in a tent is time well spent. I’m usually at my most content when under canvas. With the distractions of modern life left behind, I find that camping has a detoxifying effect on me. At the end of a day on the trail, I pitch my tent, eat, drink, sleep. In the morning I strike my tent and then repeat. It’s a simple but good life.

A first-timer’s guide to hiking the Highlander Velebit

Peter in a base layer while hiking in warm weatherPredrag Vuckovic

Our Q&A-style guide to hiking the Highlander Velebit covers everything you need to know to get the most out your first Highlander adventure

I just returned from trekking the Highlander Velebit in Croatia, an invigorating journey through a lesser-known region of Europe. The event proved to be a new way of hiking for me and has the potential to transform the future of hiking holidays.

Highlander Velebit gear list: what’s in my pack

guide to hiking the Highlander VelebitAtlas & Boots

Our Highlander Velebit gear list includes everything you’ll need for five days of hiking across Croatia’s highest mountain range

I recently completed the Highlander Velebit, a 104km 5-day trek across the Northern Velebit and Paklenica national parks in Croatia. The Velebit is one of Highlander Adventure’s collection of organised treks and therefore requires a slightly different mix of gear than what I’d pack for an independent trek.

Poles of inaccessibility: the middle of nowhere

Poles of inaccessibility - northern poleDreamstime

The poles of inaccessibility are arguably the true last frontiers for explorers. But where and what are they?

I’ve long been fascinated with the most remote places on Earth and the epic journeys of discovery to reach them. I’ve spent countless long mornings lying in bed leafing through giant reference books on the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration and even longer afternoons poring over immense maps detailing epic quests across untamed oceans.