Adventure lovers rejoice! While all destinations of the world offer some degree of adventure, there are some places out there that just seem curated for the daredevils out there! Adventure vacations are a great way to explore a destination, while also testing your physical limits. Check out our top destinations for adrenaline junkies.
An obvious first choice is the beautifully vast country of New Zealand. Known as the adventure capital of the world, it’s a must-see destination for outdoor lovers. Between its snow-capped mountains, ancient glaciers, rolling hills, and delicious wine, it’s a destination unlike any other. I recommend a visit to Franz Josef to hike the glaciers. It is a truly unforgettable experience! It’s an expensive excursion since you have to take a helicopter ride to the hiking site due to the receding glaciers, but so worth the price if you love hiking and incredible views.
Another great trip if you like hiking is the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, which is considered the best day hike in all of New Zealand! This takes you to where they filmed Mordor in Lord of the Rings (think red-coloured, sulphur volcanoes). It isn’t an incredibly difficult hike, but will take you about six to eight hours — the perfect day trip to feel like you’re in a different world!
Although Costa Rica isn’t a very big country, a quarter of the land is protected jungle. Jungle equals adventure, am I right?! You can zipline through it, hike it and even hot-air balloon over it. The possibilities are endless! The highest 10% of the rainforest is where most activities take place — consider a zipline tour in order to get the best views and get your adrenaline pumping.
Another popular activity in Costa Rica is surfing. Whether you’re a pro or want to learn, Jaco is a great place to visit. Located on the Pacific Coast, west of San Jose, surf lessons and rentals are widely available on the beaches here. You can also bird watch in the area — there are hundreds of species along the coast!
South Africa is considered a top country for a thrilling adventure and with good reason! One of the main attractions is bungee jumping at Bloukrans Bridge, where you’ll find the second-highest bungee spot in the world! At 216 metres high, this bridge will definitely send chills down your back.
Another popular activity in South Africa is going cage diving with Great White sharks. You plunge deep into the ocean, attached to a boat and just hold your breath while watching them swim around you. Talk about exhilarating!
Finally, if sharks aren’t your thing, you can always go kayaking with crocodiles and hippos at the St. Lucia estuary. The waters are filled with 1200 crocodiles, 800 hippos and countless bull sharks. This isn’t for the faint of heart! It isn’t a controlled amusement park environment and the risks are definitely scary. Go ahead and book a kayak tour, if you dare…
While Dubai might not be at the top of your list when you think of adventure and thrill-seeking, there are a few activities here that may surprise you! Typically associated with luxurious skyscrapers and glamorous hotels, Dubai is one of the most beautiful places in the world. The best way to see the city? Jumping out of a plane! Skydiving in Dubai is absolutely worthwhile as you’ll be able to see everything from a bird’s eye view — the iconic Palm Islands are spread out looking like a sand painting, the stunning turquoise waters of the Persian Gulf and the infamous spiralling skyscraper, the Burj Khalifa. Some places are better for skydiving than others, and Dubai is definitely worth the jump!
For those that prefer to stay on land, try sandboarding! It’s one of the most sought-after sports in the city, given the vast amount of desert surrounding Dubai. Similar to snowboarding, it’s one of the best desert activities for a few reasons — first, it’s easy. All you need is a board and you’re good to go. Second, it’s great for solo travellers since you don’t need another person’s help. And finally, it’s generally low cost. Although it may take you a while to get the hang of it, it’s a really unique experience!
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Written by: Sacha Vincent-Toskin