Brazil, South Africa top city hike destinations

17th Sep 2013

Trekking holidays offically don't come better than Brazil's Tijuca Forest.

Tourists on city breaks to Rio de Janeiro know all about its urban delights, such as the beaches, restaurants, stunning architecture and sporting venues.

But a mountainous, hand-planted rainforest in the heart of the metropolis should now get greater recognition as the world's biggest urban forest, after scooping a major award.

The 32km² Tijuca Forest has made first place in a list of the Top 10 city hikes in a new book listing the world's greatest escapades.

Lonely Planet's 1,000 Ultimate Adventures, which features 100 Top 10 lists, placed Cape Town's Hoerikwaggo Trail in South Africa fourth.

The accolade suggests that visitors to Rio can have the best of both worlds; enjoying all the delights and comforts associated with a great metropolis together with the escape of an airy, countryside attraction.

The forest features the statue of Christ the Redeemer atop Corcovado mountain, Cascatinha waterfall and the mural-dotted Mayrink Chapel.

The pagoda-style gazebo at Vista Chinesa viewpoint and Mesa do Imperador, a huge granite picnic table, are also favourite haunts here.

Its mighty peaks include Pedra da Gavea.

The forest was declared a national park in 1961.

The unparalleled beauty of Hoerikwaggo Trail takes holidaymakers all the way from Table Mountain to Cape Point, featuring breathtaking views and fantastic flora and fauna.

Trekkers pass through peaks, forests, beaches and parts of UNESCO World Heritage Site Table Mountain National Park, breathing in the sea air.

This 75km (46.6 mile) walk is ideally completed in five days and four nights.

London's Thames Path comes second in the new book's top 10 hikes list, followed by Sydney's Great Coastal Walk.

Vancouver's Seawall is sixth, behind Berlin Wall Trail.

Then comes South Mountain Park (Phoenix), Auckland's Coast to Coast Walk, Arthur's Seat (Edinburgh) and the Hong Kong Trail.

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