In August, I went to Peru and it was absolutely the highlight of my year.

While it was one of the most incredible trips I have ever been on, it was also, by far, the most challenging and very little went as planned.

I am a believer that everything happens for a reason and works out how it is supposed to and, in the end, having very little go as planned was what made this trip truly special. It allowed me the luxury, with no time constraints or agenda, to explore this beautiful country and connect with some truly amazing people. 

As you look back on 2019, what was the best trip you took? Share the details and inspire others for their next adventure. 

Peru 2.jpeg

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

My family and I got the chance to spend nearly 3 weeks on the South Island of New Zealand in 2019. Overwhelmingly one of the very best experiences in my lifetime. We camped, hiked, saw the sights, went to museums and cultural centers, explored some urban destinations, and ate like kings and queens. 

Like you, we didn't do much planning...but had a couple of "must see" destinations in mind. The rest was based on studying maps when we got there and recommendations by RV park managers and strangers we met along the way. 

Some of my pictures of our NZ trip are uploaded into the user gallery here. 

Started to section hike the Appalachian Trail.   Up ...Down ..up and down again but I love it.  Going back for more in 2020

@Sweet-Tater I'd love to hear more about your trip - we hope to travel to NZ in October/November this year.  Would you share some of the highlights of your trip?


I'm sorry I missed this message earlier. We saw so many areas on our trip...Christchurch, Dunedin, the Lake Tekapo region, Te Anau, the east coast. Perhaps my biggest highlight was visiting the glow worm caves at Lake Te Anau, very near the Fiordlands Park region. 


I am happy to answer any specific questions you may have. We traveled from Japan via Taiwan and Sydney before arriving in Christchurch, so my flight/carrier recommendations may not be worth as much to you. Everything else is fair game!

I was very fortunate to be able to do the Laugavegur (hot springs) Trail in Iceland with a group of 5 friends.  I highly recommend it.  This was straight up backpacking, no touring around.  Airport to hostel in Reykjavik, bus to trail head, 5 days hiking, bus back to Reykjavik & hostel, then fly home.  Total costs (excepting airfare) @$650 (bus to/from airport, bus to/from trail head, @$15 per night camping fee (hut lodging an option, but we are backpackers), 4 nights in hostel, breakfast in hostel and restaurants in town, oh yeah, fuel for the hike. We did walk around Reykjavik for a day on each end of the trip.

Anyway, the scenery is fantastic, and despite many 'hero' videos, the walk is very benign, unless it storms, which is often.

We did it the first week in July and had prepared to do it as a full-on winter hike, so the packs were a bit heavier than summer hiking.  Fortunately, the area went from many feet of snow on the ground in May, to nothing, except on the approach to the highest hut, but walking was very easy, and we had bare spots to erect the tents around the hut.


REI Member Since 1979
Backpacking Icelands famous Laugavegur Trail, from Landmannalaugar to Thorsmork. July 1-5, 2019

My husband, and two best friends and I completed the W trek in Patagonia a week ago with another 8 strangers and 2 guides that became family. What a privilege to hike such a special place at the end of the earth with like minded souls.... such a bonding experience that I will never forget. The unspoiled, raw, rugged land and the people we met has forever changed me. I feel truly blessed!

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@peggycamp87 these are great pictures, thanks for sharing!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

1) Birdwatching trip to Mass.  Visited Parker River NWR ( ) , the Mass Audubon Joppa Flats Education Center ( ). and Great Meadows NWR ( ). Fun time and good birds. 

2) and of course being a NC resident, I also have to list the Blue Ridge Parkway, which is good to visit multiple times a year.   - 



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