Reconnect With Nature – Best Places On Earth To Reconnect With Animals, Nature, And Spirituality
No one can deny that these are stressful times. COVID-19 pandemic, global warming, economic crisis, and social injustices are only some of the burning issues we’re exposed to every day. Taking a break from it all may not solve the world’s problems, but it can help you adopt a healthier lifestyle to improve your well-being. In light of this, let’s explore the best places on Earth to reconnect with animals, nature, and spirituality that will give you a fresh perspective on life.
Finding spirituality on the Pacific Crest Trail
In 2012, an American author Cheryl Strayed published a novel Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail, adapted into a 2014 movie starring Reese Witherspoon. The plot about a woman hiking over 2,000 miles of the US Pacific Crest Trail has inspired many to take the same journey and experience a spiritual awakening. The route goes from the Mexico border in California to the Canadian border by the Manning Park, and across three states: California, Oregon, and Washington.
Along the way, hikers sleep in tents, walk among the wildlife, and seek shelter under the tree canopies during storms. You may think that bears are the main threat, but you will most likely encounter rattlesnakes and bees than this forest dweller. If you plan to complete the whole route, you will spend around 6 months on the hike by yourself without meeting anyone for days. This is a great opportunity to reflect on your life and get to know yourself better so you can find the strength to improve.
Walk among the glaciers of Patagonia
Even though Patagonia is located in Chile and Bolivia, it seems like the world from another planet. Lakes and waterfalls in the ice fields and surrounded by glaciers are the landmark of this remote region in South America. But there is more to see, like volcanoes, steppes, and canyons, besides the snowy areas.
The W Trail is a 46-mile route that will show you breathtaking sights in the Torres del Paine National Park and will take almost a week to finish. Llama’s relative, guanacos are almost everywhere in the park, but you may encounter other mammals along the way, like armadillos and skunks. Kayaking, mountaineering, and horse riding are some of the activities you can do here as well, especially if you are not fond of the cold.
Go glamping in Scotland
With green hills and rocky cliffs, it’s hard to resist camping in Scotland. But the wet weather and windy days can make this harder for those who are just starting to experience the true wilderness. Thanks to many glamping opportunities, you can get a dash of luxury and still spend the nights in Scottish nature. The Brockloch Treehouse stands elevated in the bluebell forest on a farm located in southern regions of this European country.
Besides immense tranquility, you can stargaze through the skylight above the bed or at the Scottish Dark Sky Observatory while lying on the blanket. Hiking will take you to animal habitats, like Red Deer Range where you can hide and observe stags fighting or the herd grazing. The Queen’s Way is home to the long-haired goats that are especially interesting in the spring when their goatlings jump around and play. Scotland offers a myriad of green sites that will bring serenity the moment you lay your eyes on them and start breathing the fresh air.
Enjoy it all in Australia
Although it’s a small continent, Australia has it all in one place, from Aboriginal spiritual lands to the unique marine system of the Great Barrier Reef. Even a metropolis like Sydney can show you the beauty of nature with whale watching cruises, animals in the Koala Park, and the amazing flora of the Royal Botanic Garden. Australia is a country that will most likely inspire you to reconnect with nature, encouraging you to try eco-friendly behaviors and reexamine your priorities.
The most popular place to discover Australian nature is in Tasmania. This island is full of hiking trails that will take you to dense forests, waterfalls, and pearly beaches, like the Bay of Fires. Mountains may not be the tallest in the world but are challenging enough for any climber. All the national parks are full of parks and sanctuaries for animals, like Tasmanian devils and penguins, you can hardly see anywhere else in the wild.
Follow the Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage routes in Japan
Japan is one of the most serene countries on Earth with Zen gardens, tea ceremonies, and healthy food. But Japanese wilderness hides more exciting destinations that will take you to sacred places among nature, like the Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage routes. Once upon a time walked by the emperors and monks, these routes predate the arrival of Buddhism.
The region is full of Buddhist and Shinto shrines that you will encounter when hiking the undefined trail. This pilgrimage is about discovering your path both in life and through the traditional villages, bamboo forests, rice paddies, and mountains on one of the five trails. Kochi and Omine Okugake are dangerous and difficult routes, while Nakahechi, Ohechi, and Iseji are comfortable for even beginner hikers. Besides Spain’s Camino de Santiago, this is the only pilgrimage trail with UNESCO designation.
Surrender to the wilderness of Botswana
Botswana is an African country in the southern part of the continent famous for the Okavango Delta that comes to life with animals seasonally. Here, you can join a canoe tour to see elephants, hippos, and crocodiles up close, while on the land you can easily spot giraffes, lions, and rhinos.
To see more of the wonderful wildlife of Botswana, you can spend time in other animal reserves, like the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. This is a dune terrain full of fossil and river valleys that turns into the top animal destination after the rains from November to April. This part of Botswana is scarcely populated so you can completely isolate yourself and dedicate yourself to mindfulness.
In the end
If you are longing for destinations to reconnect with animals, nature, and spirituality, these are some of the best places on Earth to find solace and inner peace. From remote landscapes to populated regions, it’s possible to gain control of your life, if you allow wilderness to heal your soul. More importantly, you’ll come from this journey as a changed person ready to embrace the beauty in yourself and the world that surrounds you.
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