Written by Michael

9min read

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The stunning area around Lake Skadar in Montenegro can keep lovers of the great outdoors occupied for days. The illusive Walnut Valley hike is one of its highlights. 

kayaking on lake skadar
Chilling on Lake Skadar

The valley contains one of the most adventurous and unique hikes I’ve ever taken. Along the way you’ll see plenty of nature, and ancient abandoned buildings and bridges. 

You’re also highly likely to go the whole hike without seeing another soul due to the fact a lot of locals don’t even know about it, let alone tourists. 

The culmination of the hike takes you to a secluded pool at the top of a river that is full of the FRESHEST water I’ve ever swam in. This water is fed by two small waterfalls. 

Walnut valley waterfalls
Where you’re going to end up 🙂

I started my hike from the local town of Virpazar and it took me around 7 hours. It took this long because I literally had no idea where I was going, you’ll find out why further on in the post. 

You can probably do the round trip in 4-5 hours, especially with the map and directions included at the end of this post 😉

Looking for the unknown..

I had a whole day to kill at the end of my stay in Lake Skadar and I wanted to do something pretty epic.

I heard of a stunning hike that took you to waterfalls in the nearby Walnut Valley, and there was a guided tour! However, this tour only ran once a week on Saturdays, and today was a Sunday!

I tried to find directions on how to get there myself and I even asked some locals. However, they only had a vague idea of where it was and nothing concrete. 

Google Maps shows you where the waterfalls are, but surrounding it there is absolutely nothing, no paths, no directions, no civilisation. 

Undeterred, I knew there must be a path to the falls that the guided hike takes, and I figured I’d just keep walking until I found it. 

It made sense in my head. 

So, off I went from the local town of Virpazar with backpack and drone in hand, and enough water to sustain a small village for a month. 

The Walnut Valley hike begins

The first part of the hike is pretty simple. Follow the road out of Virpazar cross the railway line and the main road. Then join the road on the other side where all the cars and coaches park.

Follow this straight road and you’ve started your adventure!

The road is easy to walk and there’s very few cars on it, after about 10 minutes you’ll follow the road around to the left and start to climb a bit. 

Vrpazar Lake Skadar drone shot
The road leading from the town of Virpazar

About another 10-15 minutes in the road will fork, take the road on the left that leads down.

This is the road that will lead you to Walnut Valley. This road will twist and turn for around 30-40 minutes. 

Around about half way along this road you’ll notice theres a river running along the left of the road. This is the river that comes from the waterfalls you’re hiking to! 

Along this river you’ll find a cute river crossing where you can dip your feet in and some cows from the local field might even join you to cool off.

Carry on along the road and you will pass through a small village. Here the local kids will run out and offer you ‘Domestic Products’ from their stall which includes lots of liquor and honey!

Enjoy the human interaction while it lasts because these are probably the last people you’ll see for a good few hours!

Out of the village follow the road and it will eventually lead up the side of the valley slightly. Just before the road turns left further up the side of the Valley you’ll will see a clear track leading off down to your left.

Take this track and you’re on your way to the waterfalls!

Off-roading begins

Start walking along this track and you will find bee hives where the locals grow their honey. I also stumbled across quite a few turtles munching away on grass int the middle of this path. 

After a short while there will be a clearing on your left. Thos will lead you to your first ancient bridge that crosses the river. Here you to take some pretty cool photos!

Walnut valley hike bridge
A bridge along the Walnut Valley hike

At the end of this bridge there is a small narrow path off to the right that will take you back to the main path.

Along the main path you will see plenty of paths that run off to the right. 

If you want to explore down these then absolutely do, most of them take you to the river where you can cool off if you need to. 

I took pretty much all of them because I didn’t know what turning to take. Some will scratch you up, some will have massive spiders, and others will have random abandoned buildings.

But all will take you to the river where you see the remains of the many bridges that used to run over the pristine waters.

crumbled bridge walnut valley
Remains of an ancient bridge

The quarry

As you walk further along the main path you will notice a pretty small quarry on your left. If the digger is there then you could sit in it and take a picture, just sayin 😉

Virpazar quarry walnut valley hike
Hop in and take a pic 😉

The path you’ll want to take to the waterfalls is just a bit further on from the quarry. You’ll take a right at a pretty obvious junction.

The path will lead you past more beehives then to the river. At the end of the path on your right there is a big slab of concrete witch concrete benches around the far end.

It definitely looked like people had had a camp fire there recently. 

In front of you there is a crumbled bridge that you can’t walk across. However, there is a path to the left of the big concrete slab that will lead you down to the river. 

Wade across the river and on the other side there is a path that will lead you up the bank. Climb over the rocks and you’ll be on the other side of the crumbled bridge! 

There’s now two paths in front of you, take the one that leads you along the river, not the one that goes up the hill. God only knows where that goes. 

The abandoned building.

As you carry on you’ll eventually stumble across an abandoned building that definitely doesn’t look stable enough to go in. Its super old and loads of things have collapsed in it. But it’s still cool to see. 

Lake Skadar abandoned building
The cool abandoned building close to the falls

Again, you’ll find two paths. One that leads left down to the river where you can now hear the waterfalls (you’re getting close!) and another that leads to the right. 

Take the one on the right! Don’t try to be cool like me and ‘take the road less travelled’ that just leads to a world of pure pain induced by lots of stinging nettles.

As you walk all the way around the building you’ll come to a drop. Look to your right and you’ll see a path up some rocks and a red marker on one of the rocks.

hike directions lake skadar
The path you take after walking around the building.

Once you’re over this little hill you’ve completed the Walnut Valley hike! Walk a few meters and the stunning pool and waterfalls will reveal themselves to you!

Take this path, don’t jump down the drop, even more pain lies that way. 

You’ve made it!

The site that unfurls in front of you will make the hike you just completed so worth while. The pool looks so inviting, and the waterfalls are so beautiful.

While in this little snippet of Eden you have to take a dip in the water, it’s the freshest (by that I mean coldest) and clearest water I have ever swam in.

Explore the rocks around the pools too – there’s some pretty massive frogs hanging around and some great rocks to just chill out on.

Waterfalls walnut valley hike
You’ve made it, now swim!

In total I spent about an hour and a half at the pools as I wanted to get back before the light started to fade. However, if you get there early you could spend multiple hours chilling by the pools and swimming in them.

Walnut Valley hike directions

Here is a map and accompanying directions for the Walnut Valley hike.

walnut valley hike map
Walnut Valley hike map
  1. River crossing on left with cows in the picture( you don’t actually cross it)
  2. Homes selling domestic produce including honey and liquor
  3. Turn off the main road onto the track
  4. Cross the ancient bridge
  5. Walk past the random field on your right
  6. Walk past the random quarry on your left
  7. Take a right at a junction
  8. Crumbled bridge and big slab of concrete, path down to the river on the left of the concrete slab. Cross river and walk up on other side.
  9. Abandoned building, take the path on the right around the building then path up rocks on your right.
  10. WATERFALLLSSSS!!

Written by Michael

5min read

25 Comments

A Sedona Jeep Tour is one of the ‘must do’ activities when you visit Sedona.

Whenever you’re in the town you’ll see the famous pink jeeps whisking people onto their next little adventure.

Our tour was 1.5 hours and was the cheapest at around $60 per person.


Our Sedona Jeep Tour starts

We went with pink jeep tours and the company HQ is in a busy part of town. Leave with plenty of time to get there as there are big crowds.

We checked in at reception and shortly after were called up by our driver Brent to hop in and start the tour.

The Jeeps are modified to fit 6 passengers in, so if you’re in a pair it’s likely you’ll be put with another pair or a group of 3 – I rarely saw any with 6 in.

Be warned, its policy that one passenger has to sit up front with the driver.

Because I was a very British gentleman and let everyone else on first, this ended up being me. I obviously wanted to sit next to Annie and thankfully one of the other passengers offered to swap with me. Bear this rule in mind when you get on!

At the start of the tour, you travel along on the towns tarmac roads for about 5 minutes.

Pink jeep tour adventure
You can see how rough the road ahead is!

Here there’s not too much to see you get to know your driver. It turned out Brent was a part time masseuse!

After the tarmac roads, you hit the dirt track which is bumpy as hell. The transition off the tarmac hits you hard, it’s jolty and bumpy and it doesn’t become any more forgiving.

You have to wear seat belts otherwise you’ll probably fly up and hit your head!


Into the the red rocks…

From the start Brent was awesome and supplied us with fun facts that even Arizonian Annie didn’t know about.

We learnt the origin of the Name Sedona (a lady literally made it up, called her daughter it and Sedona was named after her). We also learnt the origin of Arizona states name but I forgot :(.

We were also informed why certain rocks have big black streaks running down them…

red rocks sedona Arizona

Brent was also pointing out all the different shaped rocks we could see, one looked like a battleship, another looked like an American Indians face, and another looked like a stagecoach.


The crazy rock formations

rock fall sedona arizona

The rock that resembled a stagecoach had a large slab missing from the front that you can see in the picture below. You could clearly see there was recently rock there and Brent informed us that it was the site of a massive rock fall in 2009. The slab that fell was bigger than a school bus, now that would have given you a headache!


The stunning views

We climbed higher and higher up through the wilderness and the landscape began to open up in front of us.

jeep tour in Sedona

We continued our Sedona jeep tour up to a vantage point overlooking the region.

This was the highest point this particular tour goes but you can book other tours that carry on up the road further and last up to 3 hours.

We spent a while taking lots of pictures up here before we started to head back down the boulder filled road.

Pink jeep 4x4 Sedona
sedona tour views

The unplanned event

On the way back down we were all chatting to Brent when suddenly there was an almighty thud underneath the jeep! We stopped and Brent got out to have a look but couldn’t find anything.

A few minutes more driving and chatting, then BANG! If there wasn’t something broke before, then there sure was now.

Brent got out to have a look again.

“Oh yehhh, that’s us done for”

We hopped out to have a look at what had happened. It turned out one of the suspension coils had completely snapped and was now digging into a shock absorber.

broken suspension jeep tour Arizona
That circular coil is meant to be vertical, not horizontal lol.

Brent radioed HQ to ask for another jeep and a couple of mechanics came  to look at the jeep we were currently in.

Apparently, they have a dedicated mechanic team as the Jeeps regularly need fixing due to the unforgiving road!

Whilst we were waiting for or pick up other jeeps were passing and all were making funny comments about our situation.

Annie and I really liked the fact we broke down: it gave us more time in this great area and more time to take pictures and ask questions!

jeeps driving up path
Other jeeps going off into the distance…

After around 20 minutes a jeep came to pick us up and we headed back to base to be dropped off.

Sedona Jeep Tours are definitely worth the money and are another must do in addition to Devils Bridge.

Let’s hope you break down and get more time out in the wilderness like we did 😉

Michael x

Written by Michael

6min read

2 Comments

With its ease of travel, Europe is the best place to travel from city to city. However, every now and then you want a break from the hustle and bustle.

You get a little bored and want something other than looking at the countless churches (I think I’m allergic to them I’ve seen so many). You’re probably also tired of visiting museums.

Don’t even get me started on one of the many walking tours that feel like a marathon sometimes.

Relaxation and exploration in nature is often a great alternative. Lahemma National Park, 70km east of Tallinn, Estonia, is the perfect destination for such a break. Continue reading “Lahemaa National Park – a Stunning Getaway.”

Written by Michael

4min read

12 Comments

Any travel is fun, but for experiences, it’s hard to beat the thrill-a-minute rollercoaster that is adventure travel. This pushes people out of their comfort zone, helps them grow as individuals, and opens up the beauty of the world – and the people who live on it – in ways that conventional travel just can’t replicate. Of course, all these benefits to come with a drawback: it’s challenging and really hard work at times. Below, we’ve put together five tips to help you get the most our of your adventure travel trip.

Continue reading “Gearing Up For Your First Adventure Trip.”

Written by Michael

4min read

27 Comments

If you want to experience the true beauty of the English countryside then there is no place more stunning than the Lake District National Park in Cumbria, north-west England. The National Park is pure natural splendour and contains Englands highest mountain, Scafell Pike, as well as Englands biggest natural lake, Lake Windermere. The park is continuous mountains and lakes, occasionally dotted with cute little English towns and villages. The land is used a lot or farming so you will see your fair share of fields full of sheep, horses, and cows. Postcard material everywhere you look!

Continue reading “Stay In This Cosy Traditional Cottage In The Beautiful Lake District!”

Written by Michael

6min read

18 Comments

Unfortunately, there are few undisturbed places to explore on this blue marble. However, Hang En Cave situated in Phong Nha National Park, Vietnam is one such place.

There’s always something special about exploring what mother nature has created in this world.

What’s even better is knowing that what you’re exploring is so unique and rare that you’re one of only a handful of people to have ever seen it in person.

There’s a feeling that comes with that; exploring the untouched and dangerous territory, the satisfaction of knowing that you haven’t followed the beaten path, and telling a story when you get home that only a few can tell.

Continue reading “You Won’t Believe Hang En Cave In Vietnam Exists!”

Written by Michael

4min read

12 Comments

The hike to Devil’s Bridge in Sedona is short and relatively easy one with epic scenic rewards that are rare to find anywhere else.

As one of the main attractions in the area, Devil’s Bridge in Sedona has built up quite a reputation. The hike has some of the best scenic spots that come with some great photo opportunities.

The Devil’s Bridge is a red rock arch that has been eroded over millions of years by wind and weather.

The bridge looks like its going to collapse at any second due to all the cracks.

However, I’ve been told it’ll be there for a few thousand years to come. Lets hope they’re right!

Continue reading “Discovering the Devil’s Bridge in Sedona, Arizona.”

Written by Michael

1min read

6 Comments

I’ve really fallen in love with the USA over the last couple of years.

Spending two summers working at a summer camp in Maine and subsequently meeting my girlfriend there have made it a home from home and given the country a special place in my heart.

I now hop across the pond whenever I can to see Annie, and today I am lucky enough to be doing just that!

Continue reading “Come And Hop Across The Pond With Me! The USA is Calling!”

Written by Michael

2min read

No Comments

The Pima Canyon trail is situated in the Santa Catalina mountains in Tucson, Arizona.

The hike is 3.9 miles and rated as moderate difficulty. The hike offers great views over Tuscon, a somewhat forested section that you wouldn’t expect to find in Arizona and some great wildlife including; Javelina, birds, and mountain goats.

Continue reading “Discovering The Pima Canyon Trail in Tucson, Arizona.”

Written by Michael

1min read

3 Comments

 
A hike is a great way to have a free day out. It’s also shows you how much of a city person you are when you don’t know how to open a path gate.
On a hike from Ockly to Leith Hill in Dorking, Surrey, South England, Connor and I experienced both of these.
The hike is a 7 mile round trip and takes you to Leith Hill – the highest point in South England. It takes you through fields, forests, old ruins and past 400 year old cottages.
Heres a vlog of our adventure;

Continue reading “Vlog: Hiking From Ockley to Leith Hill, Surrey, England.”