It’s easier than ever before for adventurous travelers to explore new and exciting destinations around the globe. Whether you want to zip-line through the Borneo rainforest or take a more relaxed approach to adventure travel, there is a huge range of ways to discover the world. You can book an organized trip or tailor your own, leaving some flexibility to change your plans and explore off the beaten track. And you can do it on all continents – take a look at the best spots chosen below.
Asia is simply huge, stretching across a vast landscape of changing cultures and environments. In northern Asia there are adventures to be found in the soaring Himalayas, from the beautiful Annapurna region of Nepal to the mountainous regions of Darjeeling, Sikkim and Shimla in India. Hike, sip tea, and discover a world of mountain hamlets, temples and monasteries.
From the mountains of northern India to the hills of northern Thailand … Discover a more traditional way of life by visiting hilltribes in the region. In the palm-fringed south, go beach-hopping and snorkel or scuba in some of the best diving locations in the world.
You could homestay with families in the Mekong delta, explore the fragrant cuisine and the bustling markets of Vietnam, and cycle through rural villages in peaceful Mai Chau region. In Cambodia, discover the mystical temples of Angkor in the steamy jungle lowlands or soak up the sun on the southern coast.
Africa is the quintessential continent for adventure travel. Opportunities for safaris abound, from the Kruger National Park in South Africa to the plains of Kenya and the wilds of Uganda. Or you could get off the tourist trail and explore the regions of Ghana and Togo by truck, camping in the bush under the stars by night.
The Middle East is a great place for starting or finishing a round-the-world trip, from the glamorous skyscrapers of Dubai and fantastic dive resorts of the Red Sea to the Egyptian pyramids and the mysterious fortress city of Petra in Jordan.
Australasia and Pacific
Australia and New Zealand are great countries for outdoor activities, with everything from bungee jumping and zip-lining to kayaking, kitesurfing and diving. Queenstown is the undisputed capital of adventure activities in New Zealand. In Australia, you can go on bush walks and learn about the Aboriginal way of life or snorkel in the paradise waters of the Great Barrier Reef.
Canada and the US are definitely not to be overlooked when it comes to adventure travel. Activities to try include skiing, wilderness camping, horse-riding, kayaking, whale-watching and so much more. The Rockies are beautifully wild and remote, while the US has an incredible range of landscapes, from scorching desert environments and majestic canyons to serene lakes and pine-clad forests. Throw in some of the most exciting cities in the world and you have the perfect holiday.
With the ancient Mayan ruins and lush jungles of Belize, the volcanoes and beaches of Costa Rica, the amazing landscapes and festivals of Mexico and an array of stunning pristine beaches, Central America has an amazing range of opportunities for adventure travel and activities. You can hike, canoe, dive and kayak, or explore historic settlements and learn about the amazing natural ecosystems of this part of the world.
In South America, the Inca ruins in Peru culminate in incredible Machu Picchu, while Argentina has the remote and beautiful wilds of Patagonia to hike and Bolivia has a breathtaking high altitude landscape of mountains and salt lakes. White-water raft down cascading rivers in Ecuador, discover ancient legends on Easter Island or party in Rio de Janeiro: South America offers everything from vibrant festivals to remote wildernesses.
Adventure travel holidays come in all shapes and sizes, and mean different things to different people. But the above is just a taste of some of the best activities to consider and the countries to do them in.
Jim Reeves is a travel blogger who has spent the last six years on the road.