Adventure Travel Means Captivating Experiences
There's no doubt that adventure travel has piqued the interest of many globetrotters in recent years. After all, adventure vacations allow you to experience the world in an exciting, immersive way that you simply can't without embarking on an assortment of active adventures. Whether you choose to leisurely sightsee by hiking or biking or take a more daredevil approach by adding rock climbing or whitewater rafting to your active travel itinerary, you're practically guaranteed to have a memorable adventure travel experience.
An industry snapshot report by the Adventure Travel Trade Association found that travelers are increasingly seeking to add cultural experiences to their adventure vacations, which also includes a mix of nature and physical activity. The majority of active travelers hope to experience a transformation that includes personal growth as opposed to simply getting an adrenaline rush or having a unique experience. Being able to make a difference in important humanity issues, such as social justice and poverty, is becoming a big part of the active travel industry. The report also found that popular adventure travel destinations include New Zealand, Australia, South America and Europe.
Hiking – Perhaps the most basic form of adventure travel, hiking is one that can be enjoyed by active travelers of all ages and skill levels. By traveling on foot, you can set your own pace and immerse yourself in the culture for as long as you like. Beginning hikers can take an easy day hike to explore the area while more experienced hikers may enjoy overnight backpacking active adventures. Taiwan offers a variety of hiking excursions, from simple trails in Taroko National Park to the strenuous climb of Jade Mountain. You can also find incredible hiking trails in the United States' Pacific Northwest, Southwest and New England.
Similar to hiking in that you can choose how far and fast you travel, biking allows you to potentially cover more ground while still fully embracing the wonder of the great outdoors and appreciating the local culture. Traditional cycling is perfect for exploring city roads but mountain biking adds an extra element of excitement to adventure travel by letting you chart your own course through remote locations. Take an urban cycling tour around Tokyo in Japan or try an island bicycle tour in Bermuda.
Animal lovers will especially love this form of adventure travel as horseback riding gives you the opportunity to get close to nature while bonding with your four-legged tour guide. Explore the South American regions of Patagonia in Argentina or the Atacama Desert in Chile by horseback for a one-of-a-kind adventure travel journey.
There's no better way to explore an aquatic destination than by spending a day out on the water. Paddle yourself by canoe or kayak to get an up-close view of rivers, lakes and even the ocean or set sail for a more relaxing marine experience. Australia's Great Barrier Reef is one of the most popular sightseeing destinations in the world and perfect for exploring via boat or go kayaking in New Zealand's picturesque Milford Sound. For a more heart-pounding active adventure, consider whitewater rafting along the Fraser River in Canada or Shotover River in New Zealand.
For adventure vacations in colder destinations, skiing, snowboarding and other snowy activities are popular active travel activities. If zipping down the side of a mountain sounds too intense, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are less extreme active adventures that you can consider that allow you to enjoy the snow at a slower pace. A European active adventure trip could include a ski safari in the Dolomite Mountains of Spain or skiing in Levi, Finland. The Rocky Mountains in the United States offers plenty of winter sport opportunities too.
Not for the inexperienced, mountain climbing is one of the most extreme forms of adventure travel and should only be done with proper training. Not only does mountain climbing often incorporate the use of tools, like ropes and picks, to scale cliffs but it also requires climbers to know the dangers of high altitude. For a less dangerous yet still thrilling adrenaline rush, try coasterring. This activity combines rock climbing, swimming and cliff jumping and has been gaining in popularity in Europe. While you should still be in good physical condition, it doesn't require as much training as actual mountain climbing.
All of these adventure travel experiences give you the opportunity to interact with locals and make a difference in the world. It's up to you to decide exactly what you hope to gain and what impression you'd like to leave behind while on your adventure vacations. Regardless of the active adventures that you choose, active travel is sure to result in a captivating experience.