Take the roads less traveled for your next vacation
“Adventure travelers are attracted to the folk, flora and fauna, as well as to the cultures, customs and cuisines of the places they visit,” said Roger E. Block, President of Travel Leaders Network.
Here are five vacation ideas for adventurous travelers who want to explore hidden gems in spectacular destinations.
Cruise to Stykkishomur, Iceland. Iceland is a bucket list destination for adventurers who desire to see glacier lagoons, black sand beaches and the aurora borealis. For those interested in exploring beyond the popular city of Reykjavik and the neighboring Golden Circle, head to Stykkishomur, Seydisfjordur and Bakkergardi, where there are guided opportunities to birdwatch for puffins, gullernots and razorbills. There are also hikes along lava fields and time to swim in hot springs or stroll through ice tunnels in the middle of a crevasse.
Ride Horseback or Camelback in Jordan. The expansive desert in this Middle East country gives adventurers a chance to hop a powerful steed and ride through Siq Al Bareah, the longest canyon in the Wadi Rum region, just outside the ancient city of Petra. The unforgettable ride passes mountains rising more than 1,000 feet from the valley floor and a stop at the amazing Jabal Umm Fruth natural rock bridge to where travelers can read a 4,000-year-old inscription.
Escape to the Lesser-Known Bahamian Islands. The Commonwealth of The Bahamas comprises more than 700 pristine islands, most of which were unaffected by the recent path of Hurricane Dorian. Scuba divers will enjoy the Berry Islands, home to a number of cavern, reef and wreck dive sites. The Bahamas also has a cluster of mostly uninhabited cays where one could spend an entire day without seeing another soul on some of its beaches. Inagua, which is the largest home of flamingos, the national bird of The Bahamas, has more than 140 species of native and migratory birds, making it the Birdwatching Capital of these West Indies islands.
Cycle through Portugal. Nestled in the picturesque Atlantic coast of the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal is a treasure trove of beautiful landscapes marked with bike paths and hiking trails that wind through mountains. The cities of Caramulo and Lousã, about three hours from Lisbon, have slopes that offer heart-pumping downhill challenges. Along the coast, enjoy dozens of routes that wind past picturesque rocky cliffs and seaside overlooks, such as Rota Vicentina, which extends across the Alentejo and the Algarve. For something different, take a cave tour in the Candeeiros Mountains.
Climb Hong Kong’s Mountains. Hong Kong is a unique, bustling port destination where many go to visit the street markets, beaches and temples. Those seeking a change of pace will enjoy hiking Tai Mo Shan, the tallest mountain in Southern China or climbing Lantau Peak on the idyllic Lantau Island. Ascending the extinct Tai Mo Shan volcano takes about two hours and has the best views at sunset–whereas the top of Lantau Peak gives the best view at sunrise.