Are these the most beautiful mountains in the world to climb? We certainly think so.
Mountain climbing is one of our favourite hobbies – there’s nothing quite like schlepping your way to the top of a huge peak, legs weak but your heart full with a massive sense of accomplishment.
We’re currently planning our next adventure and, we won’t lie, it will most likely include a visit to one of these breathtaking mountains. As travel writers, we’ve been pretty lucky to visit some ridiculously beautiful places, but these might just be the most incredible spots in the world.
Psst… Ready to tackle your first peak? Check out our guide to the best mountains for beginners to climb.
Beautiful Mountains to Climb
Mount Fuji, Japan
Difficulty: Moderate • Guide Recommended: No • When to Climb: July – Early September
When we think about beautiful mountains, the first place that comes to mind is Mount Fuji. This iconic symbol of Japan can be seen from Tokyo on a good day, rising gracefully against the horizon.
Its perfectly symmetrical cone shape is just one of the reasons it’s so stunning – made even better when it’s covered in snow. Whether surrounded by cherry blossoms in spring or vibrant autumn foliage, Mount Fuji stands as a majestic backdrop. And it’s even better up close.
How to Climb Mount Fuji
If you want to climb Mount Fuji in one day, this is known as bullet climbing. While it can be difficult for beginners to do this, it’s totally possible if you are prepared physically and mentally.
Otherwise, many people stay on the mountain overnight and head out nice and early to summit before sunrise.
Whatever you do, we strongly recommend that you avoid climbing during the peak season – which is mid-August during Obon Week. Instead, head there at the end of August for the very best conditions.
Mount Toubkal, Morocco
Difficulty: Moderate • Guide Recommended: Yes • When to Climb: April – May, September – October
Nestled in the heart of Morocco’s rugged Atlas Mountains, Mount Toubkal stands as an awe-inspiring testament to nature’s grandeur.
Rising to an elevation of 4,167 metres, it’s the highest peak in North Africa. But it’s not just the thrilling climb that makes Mount Toubkal special; it’s the extraordinary vistas that unfold at every turn.
From the moment you embark on the ascent, you’re greeted with sweeping panoramas of dramatic valleys, cascading waterfalls, and ancient Berber villages clinging to the mountainsides. And, as you reach the summit, the vastness of the Atlas Mountains stretches as far as the eye can see.
How to Climb Mount Toubkal
While you technically don’t need to be accompanied in order to summit Toubkal, we recommend hiring a local tour guide to help you get the most out of your climbing experience. This is because you’ll need to camp overnight on the mountain, and a guide will be able to help you with the logistics.
Climb in the shoulder seasons of spring or autumn for optimal hiking conditions. The best part? You don’t need any special skills or experience to climb the mountain – just a basic level of fitness and plenty of determination.
Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Difficulty: Moderate • Guide Recommended: Yes • When to Climb: Late June – October, December – February
We couldn’t write a guide to the most beautiful mountains to climb without mentioning our favourite: Mount Kilimanjaro. This was the first peak we tackled and, we won’t lie, it gave us the mountain climbing bug.
We can vouch that this is one of the most awe-inspiring mountains in the world. We opted for the Rongai Route as it is drier in June (when we climbed) and has the highest success rate. The climb itself covers many terrains, from lush jungle to icy trails where we had to use crampons to get by.
Tempted by a climb? You can read all about our experience of Mount Kilimanjaro here.
How to Climb Mount Kilimanjaro
Plan your Kili trip between January to February or from July to October, in the dry season. That said, these periods are also the busiest, so expect larger crowds and higher prices.
But we’ll let you in on a little secret: If you fancy visiting when it’s quieter, visit during June or October.
This hike can take anywhere between 5 – 9 days. Going with a guide is crucial as the porters can carry all the gear you need for a weeklong trek. Plus, altitude sickness can strike at any time, and having a knowledgeable guide at your disposal is invaluable.
Difficulty: Hard • Guide Recommended: Yes • When to Climb: Mid June – August
Next up is potentially one of the most incredible places in the world: the Matterhorn. This towering masterpiece in the Swiss Alps will leave you in awe. Its iconic pyramidal shape rises dramatically against the sky, looming over the surrounding landscape.
The sharp, jagged edges of its granite peaks create a dramatic and captivating silhouette. Cloaked in eternal snow, the Matterhorn glistens year round, meaning that it’s a pretty tricky hike. But it’s well worth it.
How to Climb the Matterhorn
Don’t underestimate this climb. It’s hard. There are a few routes, the most popular of which are the Hörnli Ridge or Lion Ridge.
It can take up to 12 hours to climb and you’ll need to make sure you have all the correct equipment – such as crampons etc – as well as experience of scrambling over icy terrain. It can be tricky to even stick to the trail without a guide.
That said, climbing the Matterhorn is a ridiculously rewarding experience with stunning views out over the Alps and beyond.
Table Mountain, South Africa
Difficulty: Easy • Guide Recommended: No • When to Climb: October – March
Located on the enchanting shores of Cape Town, South Africa, Table Mountain’s allure is truly unparalleled.
Rising proudly to a height of 1,085 metres, this landmark stands as a symbol of the city’s beauty and resilience. Its distinctive flat-topped silhouette is an unmistakable sight, dominating the skyline and captivating visitors.
You can reach the summit via a rewarding hike or a cable car – we think hiking up and getting the cable car back down is the way to go. At the summit, you’re treated to sweeping views of Cape Town’s picturesque coastline, the sparkling waters of the Atlantic Ocean, and the lush greenery of the surrounding national park.
How to Climb Table Mountain
We love that Table Mountain is one of the easiest mountains to traverse. But still, the best time to climb is in the drier summer months, from October to March.
While most routes up Table Mountain are pretty easy, the simplest of all is Kloof Corner. This route offers incredible views without the effort. What’s not to love?
Mont Blanc, France
Difficulty: Moderate • Guide Recommended: Yes • When to Climb: June – September
Situated in the breathtaking French Alps, Mont Blanc reigns as the undisputed king of European mountains.
Standing at a majestic height of 4,808 metres, it proudly wears its icy crown, attracting adventurers, mountaineers, and nature enthusiasts from all corners of the globe. The ascent features rugged terrain, icy glaciers, and snow-capped peaks that soar high above.
But, one of the real draws of this mountain can be found at its base. A haven of alpine charm sits below in the likes of Chamonix, which is the perfect gateway to this snowy paradise (and also an epic place to chill out with a hot chocolate and a boatload of fondue after you’ve summited).
How to Climb Mont Blanc
Mont Blanc might be a rather straightforward mountain to climb, but don’t underestimate its icy terrain. Even the fittest of climbers will want to go during the calmer summer months with a guide who can help you master the snow and ice.
Difficulty: Moderate • Guide Recommended: No • When to Climb: Mid June – September
Trolltunga – or “Troll’s Tongue” in English – is an iconic rock formation that juts out from the Norwegian mountainside, offering intrepid explorers a breathtaking perch above the awe-inspiring fjords below.
Why is it one of the most beautiful mountains in the world? Well, the journey to Trolltunga is an adventure in itself, as you navigate through pristine forests, cross gushing rivers, and ascend steep trails that lead you ever closer to the edge.
Standing on the tongue-like ledge (see where it gets its name now?) with the sheer drop below and the vast expanse of the fjord stretching out before you is a pretty magnificent sight.
How to Climb Trolltunga
When it comes to ascending Trolltunga, you can opt to go solo or with a guide. It’s a hike that certainly challenges, so you will want a high level of fitness (we’d go as far as to say you should train specifically for this mountain).
If you’re up to the challenge, make sure you plan your climb between mid June until September – this is when the weather is at its best and the views are totally clear.
Mount Olympus, Greece
Difficulty: Moderate • Guide Recommended: Yes • When to Climb: June – September
Mount Olympus is where adventure meets mythology – so, it’s no wonder it’s one of the most beautiful mountains to climb.
This is one of our bucket list climbs. Why? Rugged trails wind through verdant forests, where sunlight filters through the canopy, casting a mesmerising glow on the moss-covered ground.
Every single step towards the peak of Mount Olympus brings you closer to a panorama that will leave you spellbound—an endless expanse of mountains, valleys, and glistening seas stretching as far as the eye can see.
How to Climb Mount Olympus
Climbing Mount Olympus might sound like an Olympian task, but it actually isn’t too tricky.
Unless you’re a total beginner, you don’t need a guide to help you along the way. Most people stay on the mountain overnight and stretch the hike out to two days (this is what we recommend).
Summer is definitely the best time to climb, though we think climbing towards the end of September (when the weather is cooler) is best.