We think walking tours are the best way to see the world. Exploring a new place by walking means that you're able to get up close and personal with the magic of the area, observe small details and stay off the beaten path.
Walking tours are also easy to prepare for. You may think they require years of hiking experience, but that's just not the case. Country Walkers offers tours for first-time adventurers to ensure you enjoy your trip. These tours are highly accessible—with just moderate training, even people who only casually walk around their neighborhoods can get ready to have fun exploring the world by foot.
Here are our top tips for preparing for a walking tour:
Follow a cardio exercise regime
While you don't need to get out there and start walking ten miles every day to prepare for a walking tour, it is important to do more cardio exercise each week. This can help you build your endurance and decrease how frequently you feel winded while walking. Walking is best, but you can also supplement your training with jogs, bicycling, and other activities that will get your heart rate up.
We recommend doing cardio exercise two or three times a week for at least six weeks before your trip starts. Make sure you warm up your muscles and stretch at the beginning of each exercise session.
Head for the hills
You'll definitely want to do some of your cardio exercises in areas with hilly terrain and inclines. While you won't be scaling mountains, even our easiest tours involve some type of walking up hills or climbing stairs to reach a landmark or scenic point. Hilly neighborhoods or sloping hiking trails are all great places to build your endurance walking up inclines.
Practice using a trekking pole
Trekking poles are awesome tools for gaining stability while walking up inclines. They can also be incredibly helpful for walkers with knee, leg, or back issues because they take the weight off the joints in your lower body. Country Walkers guide Marina Meerbug walked us through her advice for using trekking poles here.
Have good posture
Good posture makes a huge difference in the comfort you feel while walking. It's easy to let your shoulders droop down or your hips lean forward, but standing up straight reduces strain on your back, shoulder and neck muscles. The best approach is to walk with your chin up, parallel to the ground.
Wear the right gear
Going on a Self-Guided walking tour doesn't require that you drop lots of cash on a whole new wardrobe. However, you do want to be prepared, as having the wrong clothes can be very uncomfortable. Bring lightweight clothing that wicks away moisture, like polypropylene shirts and wash-and-wear pants. If you bought new walking shoes, remember to break them in ahead of your journey to prevent blisters down the road.
Preparing for a walking tour doesn't have to be an intimidating endeavor. With the tips above, you can easily prepare for your trip. So put on your shoes and get ready to discover the world in an amazing new way.
To request a free Country Walkers catalog and learn more about other exciting destinations throughout the world, click here. If you would like to speak with one of our Travel Experts, please call 800-234-6900. They are available Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.