How perfect would it be to spend your days lying silently upon the salty cliff-tops, watching the sea birds glide and fall in the rising sea winds. Lying still with eyes glued to binoculars as nature goes about her business uninterrupted by the flaws of humans. Those steep sandstone cliffs unmarred by fences are a rare risk in today’s cotton-woolled society. Standing atop them you can’t help but imagine what it must feel like to fly. The fresh air revives you like CPR from the gods.
Beware the month of July. It’s not uncommon to find restaurants and stores shut down for the entire month, while employees take their four to six weeks of holiday. Sure, a lot of the more touristy restaurants and larger spots might be open, but a lot of the smaller businesses that get you closer to the culture are definitely closed for the month. And keep your plastic bags — most Swedish grocery stores charge you for plastic or paper bags in an effort to keep waste low.
So, I’m proposing that hiking sucks. I’m sure the members of the long-socked community will be up in arms about this article… But as they’re probably in a field somewhere with no access to the internet, who cares! I’m talking about real hiking, in the wilderness. Mankind has spent thousands of years inventing ways to get us further away from nature and now hikers want to go back? I love a good landscape, but why would I want to get blisters in order to see one when there are plenty available by road.
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Published in the Jul/Aug 2015 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)