Difficulty grades of the walking tours

Although we realize that there is no internationally adopted system and straightforward way to categorize the difficulty level of a certain hikes, and any such classifications tend to be highly subjective, we have tried to do so using the below outline. Please consider these before booking a certain holiday, making sure that you will be able to handle and fully enjoy all walks. For hikers, who do not practice often, a more strenuous trek may mean some pre-tour training activities before the tour starting date. In general hiking time only is mentioned on the tour descriptions. Slow hikers, or people taking more time for picnic/photo breaks should add at least 50% over the estimated hiking time.

Level 1

Trek over very low mountains or hilly, relatively flat or slightly inclined terrains. Daily walking: up to 3-4hrs and/or up to 15km/9,5miles. Climbing/descending: 100-400m/330-1300ft per day.

Level 2

Trek over varied terrain, in general below the tree line. Steep but short stages might be present along the trail. Daily walking: up to 4-6hrs and/or appr. 20km/12,5miles. Climbing/descending: 400-800m/1300-2600ft per day.

Level 3

Trek over varied terrain, which may include also a fair amount of walking in alpine landscape. Steep stages might be present, but not taking more than 15-20min each to complete. Daily walking: up to 5-6hrs and/or potentially exceeding 20km/12,5miles. Climbing/descending: 800-1000m/2600-3300ft per day.

Level 4

Treks along trails in the high alpine zones (above the tree line), or involving significant elevation gain on a daily basis. Suitable for really fit hikers. Steep stages might be longer and strenuous, taking 30-60min each to complete. Exposed passages, gravel or pathless rock slopes may pose danger of falling. Daily walking: up to 6-7hrs and/or up to 25km/15,5miles. Climbing/descending: 800-1200m/2600-3900ft per day.

Level 5

Treks for experienced and/or very fit hikers, tracing high alpine terrains, cirques, high mountain passes, and covering rather strenuous routes. Sure-footedness is compulsory as trekking on exposed slopes is common. Daily walking: up to 7-8hrs and/or up to 25km/15,5miles. Climbing/descending: 1000-1500m/3300-4900ft per day.


Don't look further! We have already compiled the best selection of self-guided hiking tours in Europe.

What to pack for a hiking holiday?


Travelers code of conduct.


Frequently asked questions.