5 Border-Crossing Walking Trails in Europe

Border-crossing walking trails in Europe are a dime a dozen. They make the ideal trail because they let you explore different cultures in a single trip, and see if they fuse eventually, or if they always remain distinctly different. With that in mind, let’s explore some of the best border-crossing trails that are no longer than 300km.

Portuguese Coastal Camino

The Portuguese Coastal Camino starts in Porto, Portugal, and ends in Baiona, Spain. This 136 km trail has some great views, and it’s the beginning part of the Camino Portugues Coastal Route. In other words, you’ll come across many pilgrims looking to go the whole way and reach Santiago de Compostela. 

Starting from Porto, you’ll soon stumble across many fishing villages and historic towns. You’ll explore both Portuguese and Spanish language, as well as their respective cuisines. Being just 136km, this one can take no more than a week to complete.

Bohemian-Bavarian Trail

The Bohemian-Bavarian Trail connects Germany and the Czech Republic – two incredible beer destinations. Starting in Bavaria and ending in Bohemia, the trail is around 200 km long and offers a slight step up in difficulty compared to the coastal Portuguese one. 

Walkers will experience a lot of greenery, from the rolling hills to the dense forestry. The trail is perfect for those interested in history and nature, with key highlights being the Bavarian Forest National Park and the historical town of Český Krumlov. 

The Three Borders Trail

The Three Borders Trail runs through the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. It focuses on the border region and is approximately 120 km long. This trail is fairly easy in the sense that it’s very flat in this part of the world, making it ideal for a leisurely walking experience. 

Walkers will enjoy a lot of interesting and ancient towns. Key highlights include the Drielandenpunt, where the three countries meet, and the historic town of Aachen. 

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Julian Alps Trail

Soča River, Slovenia
Soča River, Slovenia

Photo source

The Julian Alps Trail crosses from Slovenia to Italy, so this one is all about the alpine experience. The trail is about 200 km long and is perhaps the most difficult one so far. Walkers will have mountain views pretty much the entire time, and they’re equally as stunning in the snow as they are in the summer.

This trail is suitable for experienced hikers looking for a grand adventure, and some incredible wildlife along the way too. Key highlights include Triglav National Park and the Soca Valley. 

Istrian Peninsula Trail

The Istrian Peninsula Trail runs along the Istrian Peninsula, crossing Croatia and Slovenia. This 150 km trail is slightly easier with its coastal views and many vineyards. Highlights include the coastal town of Piran and the hilltop village of Motovun. It’s an ideal one for indulging in some culture, as there are many historic towns and interesting local foods to try. It’s also an area that has a complex history but has since settled into a very peaceful place.

Conclusion

These five border-crossing walking trails in Europe are great ways to tick a few different countries off your list without feeling as if you have rushed through them. By walking, you’re soaking everything up, yet you’re not compromising on the length of your itinerary. 

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