June 7, 2024 | Marlon Wright

20 Thrilling Destinations For Adventure Lovers


Thrills Guaranteed

If you’re searching for a unique adventure to add to your travel bucket list, look no further! Here are 20 incredible destinations that will satisfy your thirst for adrenaline.

 Thrilling Destinations For Adventure Lovers

Horseback Safari, Kenya

When picturing an African safari, most people imagine off-road vehicles ripping through the wilderness. But there's a unique and equally exciting alternative: horseback safaris. 

Originating in Kenya in the 1970s, these safaris are gaining popularity among travelers who want a more immersive and sustainable wildlife experience.

Two women ride horses watched by impalanwdph, Shutterstock

Horseback Safari (cont’d)

At the Borana Conservancy, which spans for 32,000 acres, you'll find two stables with horses that are ready to take you on a riding tour. Whether you're a seasoned equestrian or a beginner, there's a tour for you, from half-day excursions to overnight adventures. 

For the best experience, plan your visit between July and September, when the weather is nice and wildlife sightings are plentiful.

Ranger Riding Horse Seeing Giraffestonyzhao120

Do An Olympic Marathon, France

Get ready to lace up your running shoes and be part of history! For the first time ever, the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, France, are introducing an new initiative: the Marathon for All. 

Scheduled for the evening of August 10, this event invites 20,024 lucky lottery winners to conquer the iconic 26.2-mile route connecting Paris and Versailles.

Man Running On Athletic FieldAndrea Piacquadio, Pexels

Do An Olympic Marathon (cont’d)

Starting from the grandeur of Hôtel de Ville (City Hall), runners will make their way through nine arrondissements before crossing the finish line at Les Invalides, alongside the majestic Seine River. It's a chance to experience the thrill of marathon running amidst the backdrop of Parisian beauty. 

And if running isn’t your thing, you can always cheer from the sidelines. Either way, it’s an unforgettable way to embrace the Olympic spirit!

marathon in historical center of Paris, Francegumbao, Shutterstock

UNESCO Ski Tours, Georgia

Skiing has long been intertwined with the culture and lifestyle of Georgia, particularly in the country’s mountain regions. Today, traveler have the opportunity to explore some of the nation's finest backcountry skiing spots in the breathtaking Caucasus Mountains.

image of a ski liftLevan Gokadze, Flickr

UNESCO Ski Tours (cont’d)

In Svaneti, skiers can trek the stunning Gvibari Pass or visit the historic Ushguli villages, which are some of the highest continuously inhabited settlements in Europe. 

December to April is the best time to visit since that’s when the snow is thickest.

image of a mountain skiingLevan Gokadze, Flickr

Bear-Watching, Alaska

In the vast wilderness of Alaska's Katmai National Park, an incredible sight awaits: one of the highest concentrations of brown bears in the world. 

Away from the busy viewing platforms of the Brooks Camp Visitor Center, a guided expedition along the rugged Katmai coast will give you a unique view of the park's natural wonders.

Bear watching at LakeSanjoy Ghosh, Flickr

Bear-Watching (cont’d)

Amidst the park’s untamed beauty, brown bears roam freely, and there are so many of them, that you’re bound to catch a glimpse of one. 

Seeing these creatures in their natural habitat is rare, so a tour of the park will definitely be one of your more memorable trips.

Bear watching on a lake fishingSanjoy Ghosh, Flickr

Check Out Underground Music, Japan

While guidebooks often portray Kyoto as a serene haven of ancient temples and tranquil gardens, those who venture beyond the tourist trails will find surprisingly side to Japan's former imperial capital. 

After hours, Kyoto transforms into a vibrant hub of live music unlike any other in the world.

Young women wearing traditional Japanese KimonoPhattana Stock, Shutterstock

Check Out Underground Music (cont’d)

Venues like Jittoku and Field pulse with the energy of rock, swing, and even Irish tunes, echoing long into the night. 

Whether you're a jazz enthusiast or a punk rocker, Kyoto's music scene welcomes everyone, and is a diverse community where people can share their musical passions. As Kyoto tourist guide Van Milton describes it, this is a glimpse of Japan unmasked.

image of asian people having fun and dinnerVTT Studio, Shutterstock

Do A River Cruise, Colombia

It could be said that the heart of Colombia is the Magdalena River basin, which is home to about 80% of the country’s population. Flowing nearly a thousand miles from the towering Andes to the sparkling Caribbean, this incredible waterway is a lifeline for countless communities. 

Now, AmaWaterways is breaking new ground as the first major cruise operator to navigate these waters.

Aerial view of the Amazon RiverJhampier Giron M, Shutterstock

Do A River Cruise (cont’d)

With a seven-night cruise from Cartagena, travelers can explore the charming towns and vibrant culture along the river's course, going as far as Barranquilla. 

From the colonial charm of Mompós to the rhythmic beats of vallenato and cumbia music, each stop along the way offers unique experiences.

image of River Nilegivaga, Shutterstock

Drive Route 66, New Mexico

For nearly a century, Route 66 has captivated travelers with its timeless landmarks and cultural gems. 

From the quirky motels and curio shops dotting the landscape around Tucumcari to the ancient rock carvings of Petroglyph National Monument, each stop tells a story of America's past.

image of Route 66Brett Kiger, Flickr

Drive Route 66 (cont’d)

In Gallup, immortalized in Nat King Cole's iconic song "Route 66," visitors are treated to mesmerizing performances by Zuni, Lakota, and Navajo dancers, celebrating the rich history of the region. 

As the highway winds through Albuquerque, the longest urban stretch of Route 66 in the U.S., travelers are greeted by a half-million-dollar restoration project, which has given new life to vintage neon signs along Central Avenue.

Scenic panoramic view of long straight road on famous Route 66Nyokki, Shutterstock

See Ancient Art, Algeria

Algeria is home to the largest national park in Africa: Tassili n’Ajjer. Tassili n’Ajjer is where you’ll find a treasure trove of ancient rock art. 

Amidst its sandstone formations, like pillars and sculpted outcrops, lie over 15,000 petroglyphs, which were crafted by Neolithic communities.

image of a museum in AlgeriaCarole Raddato, Flickr

See Ancient Art (cont’d)

These intricate carvings depict a variety of wildlife, like elephants and giraffes, which offers a glimpse into the region's past. 

With a guided tour, you can see some of Tassili's most extraordinary artworks, like the "Crying Cows", which was carved into the stone 7,000 years ago.

The fountain mosaic of UlyssesCarole Raddato, Flickr

Swim With Sharks, Australia

Western Australia's Coral Coast stretches nearly 700 miles along the Indian Ocean, but among the underwater marvels to be found here, Ningaloo Reef is one of the most breathtaking. 

Here, every year between March and July, it becomes the meeting spot up to 500 whale sharks. It’s one of the planet’s largest gatherings of whale sharks..

a scuba diver feed a very big tiger sharkKitreel, Shutterstock

Swim With Sharks (cont’d)

There are several tour companies that will help you get up close to these magnificent creatures in a safe and sustainable way. If you book your visit after whale shark season, from July to October, you can see humpback whales making their annual migration. 

And, for underwater adventures, there’s no shortage of chances for diving, snorkeling, and swimming with graceful manta rays.

Underwater with Great White SharkTomas Kotouc, Shutterstock

Hike Up A Volcano, Panama

Panama is making strides as a sustainability leader with its innovative "1,000 Kilometers of Trails" project, aimed at promoting outdoor recreation and green tourism in rural communities and protected areas. 

Leading the charge is the Ruta de la Caldera, the inaugural trail system comprising five routes encircling the extinct Valle de Antón volcano.

image of volcano panamaInspired By Maps, Shutterstock

Hike Up A Volcano (cont’d)

These treks offer adventurers the chance to traverse picturesque landscapes adorned with cascading waterfalls. The views they get from the top of the volcanic crater make for a truly unforgettable experience. 

Man hiker walking the path of inactive volcanoTunatura, Shutterstock

Stay On A Private Island, Fiji

Go on a unique adventure at Kokomo Private Island Resort & Spa in Fiji, where the world under the sea awaits. 

Here, you can see coral gardens bustling with colorful fish, explore underwater caves, and even encounter sharks and manta rays on some of the more daring dives.

image of Fiji Tokoriki IslandPaul from La Lente, Flcikr

Stay On A Private Island (cont’d)

Yet, the luxury experience doesn't end with the underwater wonders. Staying on a private island takes the indulgence to new heights. With just the press of a button, a golf cart will come to take you wherever your heart desires. 

The staff will go above and beyond with their warm hospitality and remember little details like your favorite coffee order throughout your stay. And as you bid farewell to this island paradise, prepare for a touching moment as employees gather to serenade you with a farewell song.

image of Fiji islandPaul from La Lente, Flickr

Hike A Glacier, Chile

Go on an awe-inspiring journey through Chilean Patagonia's Laguna San Rafael National Park, where visitors are treated to the breathtaking sight of glaciers. Yet, despite the awe-inspiring beauty, the fragility of these glaciers is clear. 

View of water, glaciers and mountainsWorld Bank Photo Collection, Flickr

Hike A Glacier (cont’d)

There are about 17,300 glaciers still gracing the Patagonian ice fields, but the effects of rising global temperatures have caused them to melt at an alarming rate. Luckily, sustainable tourism initiatives offer a beacon of hope.

image of Perito Moreno GlacierYaqui Zanni, Pexels

See Ancient Architecture, Spain

Located in Spain's Balearic Islands, Menorca is a hidden gem that often gets overshadowed by its more popular counterparts like Ibiza and Mallorca. Yet, within its tranquil landscapes lies a treasure trove of ancient architecture, making it a captivating destination for history enthusiasts and curious travelers alike.

 Despite its modest size of just 270 square miles, Menorca boasts an astonishing 1,574 archaeological sites, offering a glimpse into civilizations long past.

Plaza de Espana in Seville, Andalusia, SpainKite_rin, Shutterstock

See Ancient Architecture (cont’d)

Among the island's most remarkable features are the navetas, megalithic tombs dating back to 1600 B.C., the talayots—imposing watchtowers constructed from mortarless limestone blocks—and the enigmatic taulas, distinctive shrines found only in Menorca, reminiscent of the iconic pillars of Stonehenge. 

These ancient marvels, remnants of the Talayotic Menorcan culture, have earned a place on UNESCO's prestigious World Heritage List.

Detail of La Mezquita de Cordaba, Andalusia, SpainJosep Curto, Shutterstock

Ride A Classic Train, Scotland

You don’t have to skimp on luxury is you want to explore Scotland's untamed and picturesque Highlands—just hop aboard the Royal Scotsman train. 

Departing from Edinburgh's iconic Waverley Station, the Royal Scotsman will take you through the heart of the Highlands, from the enchanting landscapes of Perthshire to the historic charm of Inverness. And you get to do it all in style.

Glenfinnan Railway Viaduct in ScotlandNick Fox, Shutterstock

Ride A Classic Train (cont’d)

The suites in the train feature dark woods, sumptuous wool tweeds, and intricately patterned bespoke tartans meticulously that speak to Scotland's captivating landscapes. 

And after a day filled with adventures—like hiking to majestic waterfalls, exploring ancient castles, savoring Scottish whisky at esteemed distilleries, or indulging in rounds of golf—you can unwind with a rejuvenating massage at the onboard spa.

image of a old fashioned trainCTatiana, Shutterstock

Try Some Of The World’s Best Food, Thailand

Discover the culinary treasures of northeastern Thailand's Isaan region, where the rich flavors reflect the cultural influences of neighboring Laos and Cambodia. 

Renowned Chef Weerawat "Num" Triyasenawat once praised the food in Isaan, and called it a "hidden gem of Thailand".

Pile of Shrimps on PlatesOleksandr P, Pexels

Try Some Of The World’s Best Food (cont’d)

At the heart of Isaan cuisine lies pla ra, a fermented-fish seasoning that adds a distinct bitter richness to dishes. Local favorites include laab, a minced meat salad bursting with flavor, usually enjoyed during festive celebrations. 

It's a testament to the region's culinary prowess, where every bite tells a story of tradition and local culture.

image of thailand dishAugustinus Martinus Noppé, Pexels

Explore Tea Trails, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka's reputation as a tea paradise is well-deserved, with the island nation ranking among the world's top tea producers. The story of Sri Lanka's tea industry dates back to around 200 years ago when British colonists introduced the first tea bushes to the island. 

Today, visitors can trace history with a trek on the new Pekoe Trail—a nearly 200-mile-long walking route, the first of its kind in the country.

image of a woman hiking in sri lankaHagen Simon, Shutterstock

Beginning just outside the city of Kandy, the trail winds its way along the 19th-century tracks that were once walked by workers and horse-drawn carts transporting freshly plucked tea leaves. 

As hikers make their way through charming hill towns and tea estates, they can stop to savor traditional Sri Lankan delicacies by joining a cooking class or indulge in the fragrant aromas of Ceylon tea with a tea tasting session.

image of Tea plantations around the castlereagh reservoir Hatton Sri lankaM.L.Nuwan, Shutterstock

Go Gallery-Hopping, Brazil

São Paulo, the largest city in Brazil, is a haven for art enthusiasts. Home to a vibrant art scene, there’s no shortage of galleries, exhibitions, and striking street murals in the city. 

Among its cultural treasures, the Museu de Arte de São Paulo (MASP) stands out as a true gem.

image of São Paulo Museum of Artxm4thx, Shutterstock

Go Gallery-Hopping (cont’d)

What sets MASP apart is its innovative approach to exhibition design. Departing from traditional methods of displaying art on walls, the museum suspends some pieces against clear panels, allowing visitors to appreciate the artwork from all angles. 

This unique presentation style invites viewers to engage with the art in a more immersive and interactive manner, offering a fresh perspective on each masterpiece.

Visitors in the Museum of ArtMaarten Zeehandelaar Shutterstock

Brave Rapids, West Virginia

Contrary to its name, West Virginia's New River is anything but new—it's actually one of the oldest rivers on Earth, with a history stretching back as far as 360 million years. 

Carving its way through the stunning Appalachian landscape, this ancient waterway cascades 750 feet in just 50 miles, flanked by towering sandstone cliffs that add to its dramatic allure. .

Overlook of the River at Gauley River National Recreation AreaZack Frank, Shutterstock

Brave Rapids (cont’d)

Thrill-seekers and adventure enthusiasts can turn the New River into an exhilarating playground. With its rushing currents, challenging rapids, and picturesque surroundings, rafting on the New River gives an unforgettable adrenaline rush and a chance to experience the untamed beauty of one of America's most iconic waterways.

Action captured in motion, river rafting in white watersPRIYA DARSHAN, Shutterstock

Antiquing Adventures, New York

Hudson Valley is the perfect place for antique enthusiasts. treasure trove of delights. From charming boutiques to massive flea markets, there's something for every collector. 

famous Brooklyn Flea MarketLittle Vignettes Photo, Shutterstock

Antiquing Adventures (cont’d)

Must-visit antique stores include the Antique Warehouse in Hudson, Sister Salvage in Catskill, or Opera House Co. in Athens. These establishments offer some of the most unique mementos of bygone eras.

image flea marketRichard M Lee, Shutterstock

Sleep On Water, British Columbia

Owned by the Ahousaht First Nation and located in the heart of Clayoquot Sound on British Columbia's Vancouver Island, the Tofino Wilderness Resort is an enchanting retreat for travelers who are looking to immerse themselves in the natural beauty of Canada's western coast. 

image of Vancouver Island, BCTom Collins, Flickr

Sleep On Water (cont’d)

Renovated using lumber sourced from timber that fell on-site, the lodge stands by their commitment to environmental sustainability. Guests are invited to go on guided whale-watching trips or visit the Freedom Cove artists' sanctuary, where they can learn about the Ahousaht's cultural traditions. 

Central to the Ahousaht's worldview is the belief in hishuk ish tsawalk, which translates to "everything is one". As stewards of the land for thousands of years, the Ahousaht invite guests to embrace that worldview and join them in honoring the connection between people and nature.

Looking southwest from the west coast of Vancouver IslandTom Collins, Flickr


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