If you find yourself bored at beaches and tired of lazing around with nothing to do whenever you are on vacation, maybe it’s time that you kick it up a notch and take yourself on an adventure.
Traveling doesn’t always have to be lazy and expensive. Exploring the great outdoors and going to places not well known to tourists can be inexpensive and give you an experience like no other vacation can give you. All you’ll need to embark on your adventure are a pair of reliable hiking shoes and a thrill-seeking heart. Here are 21 top destinations that active travelers go on vacation.
- Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
See a myriad of endangered animals run wild in these islands as you dive, snorkel, surf, boat, and hike. From giant tortoises and sea lions to sleeping sharks and marine iguanas, you will have the time of your life coming up close and personal with these majestic beasts.
- Etosha National Park and Skeleton Coast, Namibia
Besides sand boarding and sand sledding to your heart’s content at the coastal city of Swakopmund in Skeleton Coast, the Etosha National Park will also allow you to interact closely with wild animals like never before. This destination allows you to get in touch with nature and it’s creations as there are numerous black rhinos, cheetahs, lions, and elephants who run wild in the park.
- The Swiss Alps
Regardless of the season, the Swiss Alps is the ideal place for a vacation. Skiing in the winter and hiking or biking in the summer, you can even visit twice a year to experience it in different weather. Moreover, you will be spoilt with splendid views of the numerous highland lakes and meadows.
- Sedona, Arizona
If you love a good adventure but also enjoy the arts, be sure to check out Sedona. With an international film festival and music festivals throughout the year, you can unwind after a day of hiking, camping or mountain biking. The town is known for its red sandstone formations which many believe have the power to harness energy good for the soul.
A tranquil country with a small population, travelers can enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, biking, horseback riding and fishing without squeezing with tourists. Take a break from the hustle and bustle of city life and check a thing or two off your bucket list as you can view the northern lights at Tromso and head to Holmenkollen outside Oslo to try their hand at the infamous sport of ski-jumping, a destination known for hosting the Winter Olympics of 1952.
- Diamond Highlands, Brazil
Find out where diamonds come from in the Chapada Diamantina highlands which are where the famous diamond mines are located. They are known for their quintessential waterfalls and wondrous cavern pool, Poco Azul, which you can swim in.
- Southern Utah
Embark on a spiritual retreat as Southern Utah gives you easy access to five incredulous national parks, namely Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands and Arches National Park. Marvel at the natural rock formations that cannot be seen anywhere else and unwind with activities like meditation, yoga, pilates and tai chi.
- Olympic Peninsula, Washington State
The Olympic National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve, making it extremely worthwhile to visit and hike in. The Peninsula has bald eagles, gray whales, and auklets. Walk through the many forests offered and relax in the various hot springs in the park after a day of wilderness exploration.
Snorkel and scuba dive for the ultimate adventure if the cold doesn’t bother you and swim in the tranquil blue waters of Iceland. If you can’t stand the cold, head down to Blue Lagoon instead. It is a hot spring situated 25 miles from Reykjavic and will allow you to enjoy this cold paradise in the warmth.
- Lakes Region, Chile
Discover all that Puerto Montt and Puerto Varas have to offer. These towns are suitable for walking and you can sit at any old-fashioned cafe or restaurant to take a break. Moreover, they have a national park, Vicente Perez Rosales where you can hike through volcanoes, rainforests, and flawless lakes and rivers.
- Yukon, Canada
Probably the most fun you can get in Canada would be in Yukon where they have whitewater rafting or alpine climbing. You can even conquer your fear of heights or simply enjoy a bird’s eye view of the scenic views by “flightseeing”. “Flightseeing” includes booking a small plane and flying to the top of a glacier before alighting and hiking around the area.
- Zhangjiajie, China
Hike through landscapes only seen in pristine Chinese paintings and see the gorgeous landforms and sandstones right in front of your eyes. These awe-inspiring views will take your breath away with places like the Xianren Qiao and Yupi Feng which will be a sight for sore eyes after hiking all day. You can even whitewater raft in the Mengdong River for as long as 100 kilometers!
- New Zealand
No matter which part of New Zealand you decide to visit, both the north and south islands are full of beauteous natural wonders that you can surf, snorkel, dive or hike through. Both offer great hiking trails in their forests that will lead to amazing views of mountains, magnificent coastlines, and even water coves.
- Northern India
There is probably nowhere else better to see tigers than in Corbett National Park on the Ramganga River. It is home to the endangered Bengal tigers which you cannot find anywhere else. This place is ideal for rejuvenating yourself with many places in cities like Haridwar and Rishikesh that give visitors the chance to pick up yoga.
- Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Hike through the dense, green forests of the Cambodian jungle and be rewarded with the alluring sight of ruins from the ancient Khmer kingdom. It is the world’s largest religious monument and is close to Angkor Thom, the old capital of Cambodia when it was under Khmer rule. It is popular among tourists and may be crowded but the journey there will be extremely worthwhile. You can choose to hike, cycle, or take an estimated six-hour boat ride there.
Morocco is known for its rich history and culture but little do you know that it is a well-known destination for surfers. The coastal city of Agadir is every surfer’s wonderland and you can engage in other activities like hiking, trekking or yoga at the Atlas mountains which are just a stone’s throw away.
With this list in hand, you are ready to spice up your next vacation and turn it into the adventure of a lifetime. Be sure not to over exhaust yourself; after all, you are on a holiday. These ideas and activities are suitable for solo traveling or if you are traveling with friends. They will give you the chance to see the world in a different way, making your adventure all the more fulfilling and worthwhile! If your backpack isn’t too heavy, why not bring along a pool float to level up the experience? This inflatable rainbow unicorn pool float will fit with your bright personality!