Top adventure and eco experiences for 2017

Adventure and eco experiences for 2017 hiking all around Zion National Park

Zion National Park, Utah

Top adventure and eco experiences for 2017

For adrenaline and adventure junkies, there are so many special locations to choose for your next travel destination for 2017. I’ve asked some of the top travel bloggers in the industry to share some of their favorite adventure and eco travel experience worth doing for the upcoming year and they have delivered some of the ultimate in adventure thrills for you to consider.  Whether diving in some exotic local or climbing an active volcano, below are some of the most exceptional adventure and eco places to explore around the world. Get ready for some thrilling experiences below and hopefully this will be inspired you to try some and have an adventure filled time for 2017.

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences Manta Ray diving Big Island

Night Diving with Manta Rays on Big Island of Hawaii
 

The Big Island of Hawaii is a top diving destination, especially on the calm Kona side with sites such as Two Steps in Honaunau Bay, where we saw pods of dolphins and black-tipped reef sharks. The highlight of our trip was night diving with the manta rays at the Manta Village spot, close to the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort in Kona. Soon after our divemaster set the night lights, several large manta rays came over one about 12 feet (4 meters) large. I was not expecting the rays to get so close and was surprised when the giant but gentle beasts touched my shoulder or my head as they passed by. The thrill reached another high when I turned my face and saw the mouth of the manta wide open just a few inches away. I thought I was going to be swallowed whole! Watching the mantas dancing around us as they searched for the plankton and the close encounter with the huge rays are must-see experiences for any diver!

Dive log & Tips: We spent about one-hour bottom time and 40 minutes at 30 feet (10 meters) with the manta rays. The best season is spring to fall, due to the lower surf conditions. The surf was quite strong when we dove in November, and we had difficulties staying put on the given spot without grabbing coral or sitting on urchins. The water temperatures were about 65-70°F (18-21°C), but we wore 3/2 mn wetsuit and booties since we were shore-diving from a rocky entrance.

Check out Patricia Pagenel Ze Wandering Frogs – adventure travel blog on diving with Manta Rays in Hawaii

Top adventure and eco experiences for 2017 La Loma eco lodge stay in Bastimentos

 An eco luxury stay in Bastimentos, Panama

Picture staying at a chocolate plantation isolated from the rest of the world eating farm to table cuisine and delicious chocolate inspired dishes for every meal and you would definitely want to visit La Loma in Bocas del Toro for 2017. You can spend the day relaxing in your tree house casita, picking fresh fruit from the farm or taking a cacao tour, kayaking or boating the many islands around Bocas region filled with a many stunning islands, beaches and national parks. There’s so many amazing adventure opportunities when you visit this region and staying in an eco/luxury lodge just sets it off quite well don’t you think? Check out more images and story on my La Loma post here for more inspiration to visiting this beautiful and unspoiled area of Panama.
Noel with Travel Photo Discovery
 Adventure and eco experiences for 2017 hiking the Camino de Santiago

Hiking the Camino de Santiago

As a well-known long-distance trek, the Camino de Santiago is a network of pilgrimage routes running across Europe, all leading to the city of Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain. Retracing its origins to the 9th century, Camino de Santiago, also known as “The Way of Saint James”, was an important pilgrimage route for the Christians. The Christian apostle Saint James was beheaded in Jerusalem in 42 AD and his remains were buried in Santiago de Compostela. When his tomb was discovered, Christians across Europe began to travel to see it. This journey  became one of the most important pilgrimages in the world.

These days, the Camino de Santiago is more of a personal journey than a religious pilgrimage. Millions walk it each year in search of direction and deeper meaning in life. For many of us, the Camino has the power to change your life and give you new perspectives. I walked the Camino de Santiago in 2014 and it taught me how to appreciate life in small ways.


By Nellie Huang with adventure travel blog WildJunket

The #DeathRoad warriors. #LaPaz #Bolivia #millennialtravel

A photo posted by Trisha V. @ P.S. I’m On My Way (@psimonmyway) on

Biking the death road in Bolivia

Can you imagine yourself biking the most dangerous road in the world? Sssssssh! I didn’t tell my family I did this (not until the trip was finished) but it really was a hell of an adrenaline rush! The Death Road in Bolivia is the best extreme adventure that people traveling South America are looking forward to. It’s not for everyone but those who conquered the ride will always tell you do at least try.

If you are with a tour group, the route is always downhill (with a few separate 3-min uphills) and the guides will always tell you to stay in one line. The bikes used by tour companies are very professional and guaranteed safe so you don’t have to worry! Roads can get really narrow but the trick is to always be on the side of the mountain (not the cliff) and never look down. The Death Road is a normal transport route for trucks so when you come across one, don’t panic! Just stay in your lane and you will be fine.

Some groups have faster riders they tend to pressure you with your speed but take your time. You don’t have to be as fast as the others as long as you are safe. I did the biking tour at the beginning of South America’s summer (December) but we were wearing jackets during the ride because it can get really cold up there! Basically, Bolivia can be visited all year despite its extreme weather.

By Trisha Velarmino with PS I’m on My Way

 

 

 

 Top adventure and eco experiences volcano boarding in Nicaragua

Volcano boarding at Cerro Negro

Fancy hiking up an active volcano, jumping on a sledge and boarding down it? Well, this year you can. Take a flight to the beautiful Central American country, Nicaragua and head to Leòn which is the closest city to the land of lakes and volcanoes’ youngest volcano, Cerro Negro. After a relatively easy hour hike up Cerro Negro, crossing the Ring of Fire you suit up in a sexy jumpsuit, goggles and gloves then it is showtime! Sit back and enjoy the 55 mph ride down. Watch out for the volcanic rock, you’ll be pulling it out of your teeth! See the expedition in action here.

Gemma and Craig with Two Scots Abroad

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences diving Raja Ampat

Diving Raja Ampat in Indonesia

If you love marine life, you need to visit Raja Ampat. This small archipelago off the coast of West Papua, Indonesia, is one of the best places in the world in terms of marine biodiversity, making it a wonderful place to dive. In just one dive, I saw sharks, barracudas, turtles, manta rays and lots and lots of fish – more in one dive than in all the other dives of my life all together! The coral reef is in great conditions, thanks to the area which sees very little boat traffic. If you don’t dive, you can still travel to Raja Ampat to swim, snorkel, go bird watching or simply enjoy pristine nature.

By Margherita Ragg of The Crowded Planet

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences kayaking Baja Mexico

Sea Kayaking Off the Grid in Baja Mexico

As our paddles dip into the glass like water of the Sea of Cortez, the glimmering backs of dolphins appear beside our double kayak. The Mobula rays, cousins of the stingray, leap skyward from the water as though an underwater giant has taken up juggling of sea creatures. So much action off Mexico’s Baja coast and yet such calm.

Launching the kayaks near the quaint Mexican Baja town of Loreto and paddling southward, one greets an almost untouched wilderness. Completely off the grid, the lack of cellular coverage, internet and power balances with pristine, endless beaches and dazzling star filled nights. Snorkeling with wild sea lion pups who know no fear of humans, their curious eyes lock with ours as they tilt their heads in puppy like expressions.

The guided adventure thrills even the most experienced adventurers of the group. Island hopping through the Sea of Cortez the kayaks are small enough to explore hidden sea caves and mangrove swamps. When the paddling finishes for the day the beach camp provides a home base for hiking, swimming, fishing or relaxing and soaking up the peacefulness of this paradise. With the guides providing everything from happy hour to delicious meals for the week all one needs to do is breath in the fresh air and smile into the sunshine.

When is the best time to kayak the Sea of Cortez? During the months of October and November the waters are bath tub warm and the day time temperatures less sizzling than those of the summer months. Should you want to witness the migration of the Pacific Gray whales on the Pacific Ocean side of the Baja peninsula then late January to mid March are best.

More information about kayaking in the Sea of Cortez can be found here.

By Sue & Dave Slaght at Travel Tails of Life

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences dogsledding in Canada

 

Dog sledding in Canada

There’s no more unique way to explore Canada’s backcountry than through dog sledding. You can find dog sledding tours all around Canada, from British Columbia and the Yukon to Alberta and Ontario.I booked a trip just outside Whistler, where we took the winding paths through the old-growth forest of the Callaghan Valley. Upon arriving at the camp, my guide gave me a brief introduction to dog sledding, and introduced me to the dogs on our team.

 

The dogs barked in excitement, but once the sled pulled away, all was quiet apart from the crackling snow underneath the sled. I relaxed, wrapped in a cosy blanket, while the eager dogs pulled the sled forward. After a short break, I could mush my own dog team. The main tasks consisted of slowing down the sled when the dogs were running too fast, and helping them reach the top of small hills when they were struggling. As I settled back under my comfy blanket, I marvelled at the winter wonderland around me, as we made our way through the scenic forest trails back to the camp.

 

You can book dog sledding tours from December to March. I recommend wearing base layers to keep warm. If you want to mush, wear high snow boots or snow gaiters to keep the snow out of your shoes… and above all, don’t forget to bring your camera!

By Lies Veldeman at http://www.nonstopdestination.com

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences kayaking Milford Sound

Kayaking at Milford Sound, New Zealand

‘Kayaking, Milford Sound is one of those experiences you will never forget. Paddling in water so deep it is black, snuggled up against cliffs 2000 metres high, how could you not forget such beauty! While visiting Milford Sound within Fiordland, New Zealand, there are a variety of options to explore its awe. You can either kayak, take a large boat or fly over the sound. My preference was naturally kayaking for a variety of reasons. Kayaking is an experience, and a 6 hour one at that, while a boat and plane are much much shorter, which let’s be honest doesn’t take in the sounds full beauty. Also, the small personalised tour that is kayaking is just what is required when trying to take in your surroundings. Finally, it is also the most eco-friendly option and the one where you are closest to nature. To paddle and get up close and personal with seals and edge your way into a waterfall is undoubtedly something special! I conquered the kayaking trip in the Summer month of January in New Zealand and was lucky enough to witness the sound in full sun. A rarity in New Zealand and I highly suggest experiencing this tour during the summer months for the best views, experiences and enjoyment that Milford Sound has to offer.’   

 

The Traveller’s Guide By #ljojlo – http://www.hashtagljojlo.com/category/oceania/new-Zealand

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences Hiking the Andean Highlands

 

Hiking the Andean Highlands

Ecuador may best be known for the Galapagos and the Amazon but any adventure traveler also needs to put the Andean Highlands on their list. Located about an hour south of the the colonial capital of Quito, Cotopaxi National Park with an elevation of 19,000 feet is a popular destination for both daytrippers and hardcore mountaineers alike. If summiting the snow capped semi-dormant volcano is a bit too technical there are hikes of varying difficulties among the regions seven dormant volcanoes. While here make sure to don a pair of llama chaps and explore the Paramo grasslands on horseback with a chagra,one of Ecuador’s storied highland cowboys.

By Brianna Simmons at http://casualtravelist.com

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences mountain biking in Bulgaria

 

Mountain Biking in Bulgaria

Bulgaria is full of beautiful mountains giving travellers many opportunities for hiking, trekking, climbing or… mountain biking. There is the Balkan mountain, which gave the name of the peninsula, and Rila, which is the highest one on the Balkans in Bulgaria.

But Rhodope mountains are especially generous on gorgeous views, admirable landscapes and adventure opportunities. Our 2-day mountain biking trip was all we needed to realize how fascinating the Bulgarian nature is.

We had the chance to ride by several unspoiled villages and even to reach the highest one in the country – Ortsevo. But the best thing about going in the Bulgarian Rhodope mountains is that you can stumble upon a hot mineral spring in almost every corner. A perfect ending of every adventure! The best time to go on a mountain biking trip in Bulgaria is in May or September. I recommend hiring a local guide who is familiar with these parts of the country.

Mountain biking is good not only for sightseeing and exploring nature but is also good for the body. Moreover, when you ride down some hills you get the adrenaline going on so fast, it makes you wonder how you’re not doing this every day.

By  Maria Stoyanova with www.travellingbuzz.com

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences hiking the Old Man of Storr

 

Hiking through the Old Man of Storr in Scotland

The Old Man of Storr on the Isle of Skye is one of the most beautiful and rewarding hiking tracks in Scotland. Skye is known for its rugged beauty and the Old Man of Storr is the perfect example. The Old Man is in the north of Skye and sits out on the edge of the Trotternish Ridge. The Old Man can be seen from miles around; this beautiful pinnacle that was created by an ancient landslide.

This hike can be completed at all times of the year but it can get quite muddy at the bottom and at the very top. Also, remember this is Scotland- it rains a lot! This means that the very top section can also be very slippery. This hike is 7 out of 10 in the difficulty scale with an average of 1 hour and 15 minutes (with no breaks) to complete. I took a bit longer but it was totally worth it.

The hike is a 3.8km with a start and return point at the same spot. There is a slight walk up hill before you get to the hike itself which has four different stages.  The foot of the Old Man is covered in big rocks and it is often a scramble to get to the top (sometimes hands are required!). The Old Man of Storr is one of the most breathtaking hikes I have ever been on and I highly recommend for anyone to give it a go!

By Helena with Through an Aussies Eyes http://www.throughanaussieseyes.com/searching-skye/

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences camping in the Amazon

Wild camping in the Amazon Rainforest

The Amazon is a dream destination for many travelers. The size and diversity of this enormous jungle appears as an almost mythical image in people’s minds. Nevertheless, visiting the Amazon Rainforest often turns out to be a disappointment for many who expect to see wildlife on every corner. Instead, one should focus on listening to the sound and breathing in the smell of the dense jungle.

For ourselves the best way to absorb the feeling of the Amazon was to go deep into the jungle and spend a night there camping in the open. We did that close to Santarém in the Tapajós National Forest, and it was one of the most memorable experiences we have ever had. We hired a guide (Gil Serique) in the nearby city of Santarém, and we walked with him for a few hours in the jungle, built a shelter for ourselves and hanged our hammocks between trees to spend the night in the rainforest. When the night came and our fire burned out, the jungle seemed to wake up and we were listening to the sounds of it for hours. It was both scary (especially when howler monkeys started hurling like crazy) and absolutely amazing. The best time of the year for this adventure is in May-June, the final months of the rainy season, when it does not rain too much, but the water level is the highest, and part of the forest is flooded. Hence, after spending a night in the jungle you can take a boat with a guide, who will take you to spot wildlife in the flooded forest, where chances of seeing lots of animals is higher than in the dry season.

Check out Gabor Kovac’s experience of the Amazon http://www.surfingtheplanet.com/en/tour-in-the-amazon-rainforest-in-santarem/

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences hiking Mt. Everest

 

Hiking the Everest Trails in Nepal

Hiking along Nepal’s Everest Trails to Everest Base Camp and having the opportunity to see the World’s tallest mountain up close is at the top of many adventurers’ bucket lists. This trip of a lifetime not only rewards you with some of the World’s most spectacular mountain scenery, but also provides a fascinating glimpse into Sherpa life and culture. The trails take you past prayer wheels and prayer flags, and you have the opportunity to call in at monasteries and admire stupas along the trail. But these rewards come at a price and the hike to Everest Base Camp (at an altitude of 5,545m) is a strenuous adventure. There are long days trekking at high altitude, and the trail takes you over high passes and along precarious rope bridges, so make sure you are in good health and well prepared.

The best time to hike to Everest Base Camp is from March to May and from September to November, when the weather is warmer and you have a good chance of clear vistas. The return trek from Lukla (where you fly in from Kathmandu) to Everest Base Camp takes 12-13 days return, including acclimatization days. If you don’t have time to do the full Everest Base Camp trek, a shorter trek to Ama Dablam Base Camp, at an altitude of 4,570m is possible as a 9-day trek. This still gives you the incredible mountain views, but makes it possible as a 2-week holiday from work, including transfers through Kathmandu.

By Marianne Rogerson at http://www.mumonthemove.com/

 

 

 

 

Adventure and eco experiences for 2017 horseback riding in Mongolia

 

Exploring Mongolia

If you have a keen sense of adventure, a love for mountains and are generally a fun loving happy person than Mongolia should be number one on your list of places to have an adventure in 2017. The country is small, land locked and bordered by Russia and China. Fun communist times you’re thinking by now. Well yes there is still a truly unique communist heritage among the thousands of years old history. But really to enjoy Mongolia you need to push yourself beyond the political mayhem of the past 100 odd years and embrace this ancient culture.
Mongolia offers mountains, rivers, desserts. It’s the perfect unique country for the traveller that wants to travel the road less travelled, embrace local culture and vodka. All the vodka. It’s not a Mongolian adventure unless you’ve drunk vodka and airag. Or if you are more into the historical side of life you can visit ancient monasteries.
To truly embrace the culture and this magnificent country you need to experience life as a nomad would. So saddle up your pony, explore the mountains and meet the wonderfully warm and friendly people that survive in some of natures toughest conditions.
Check out more of Jeannette Chaney’s post on Mongolia here .


 

Top adventure and eco experiences kayaking Coron to El Nido

Kayaking Expedition from Coron to El Nido, Philippines

The Philippines is rampant with beauty and tropical paradise islands. On top of the beauty, we engaged in adventure after adventure while exploring remote islands, far off beaches and camping our way through the islands of Palawan. We kayaked into coves, around islands and at time through open water between islands. During the day, we stopped at remote islands to buy food, fresh coconuts and fill our water. At night, we camped on remote beaches with campfires and the stars. We visited villages that only see tourists a couple of times each year and snorkeled on some of the most pristine reefs in the World.
To make the expedition that travels from Coron-El Nido-Coron, you need at least 9 days to really enjoy it and not be speeding through your days. These trips start at $550 USD per person depending on your group size.  While our trip took place in early December, we did have some issues with rough seas and had to alter our itinerary a couple of times to accommodate this. The absolute best time to take this trip is in April and May, when the sea is like glass and there is minimal wind. 
 
This kayak expedition is one of the Top 100 Travel Adventures in the World. It’s a fantastic way to get up close with nature, let go the need to be connected all the time and just enjoy the experience of having a true adventure during your travels. 
 
By Lina and David Stock with http://www.divergenttravelers.com
 
Top adventure and eco experiences hiking up Stromboli, Italy

Hiking up an active Volcano at Stromboli in Italy

“While Italy is synonymous with pizza, pasta and Prosecco, it’s also home to three active volcanoes. Mt. Etna and Stromboli has been in continuous states of eruption and Stromboli has been in continuous eruption for over 2000 years. There aren’t many places in the world that you can get up close to spewing molten lava, but Stromboli is one of them. Park rangers ensure safety and take groups of adventurous hikers up the volcano for a nighttime show unlike any other on earth. It’s a fairly challenging trek that does require a pretty good fitness level, but you’ll definitely forget that your legs feel like jello as you watch red hot magma shoot out of the cone of Stromboli like fireworks on the Fourth of July. Just don’t forget to carry a tripod because it’s nearly impossible to capture the action with a camera on manual settings and with a tripod.”

Check out Jennifer Dombrowski’s Stromboli post here http://luxeadventuretraveler.com/hiking-stromboli/

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences bungee jumping in South Africa

 Bungee jumping at Bloukrans bridge, South Africa

There is no equal to the feeling of flying. The two activities which bring you nearest to the act of flying are skydiving & bungee jumping. Skydiving is a tad bit more expensive, restrictive and for the first few jumps you would be strapped on with an instructor who does all the heavy work. In bungee jumping however, you are alone from the get go and the rush that you get in the free fall is something else. There is a sense of apprehension before the jump, panic while jumping, a bit of relief once you realize you’re not going to die and then the panic once again when you’re yanked up for the swings till you stabilize. Bloukrans bridge in South Africa is one of the highest jump points in the world and has a 100% safety record which should put your mind at ease, moreso when you spot one of the many posters describing how a 90+ years old person has also jumped from the same point some time back, setting a Guiness world record not likely to be broken anytime soon.

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences bicycling Vietnam

Cycling from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Vietnam is the perfect country for a cycling adventure. With two main cities sitting on either end of the country, Hanoi in the north and Ho Chi Minh City in the south, you can easily ride between the two, taking in the main sights as you go, and leaving you with just one big decision – which route to take. For that decision, there’s only two main roads that run the length of the country, each providing a different kind of adventure and challenge. The Ho Chi Minh Highway is physically more difficult with many a hill and a greater distance between possible places to rest, but it does provide some of the best views you’ll see in the country. Alternatively, Highway One runs along the coast, passing through the majority of the main destinations and generally providing for an easier ride but proving more of a challenge when you fight for space among the other vehicles. 

With either route, a cyclist will cover about 2,000km, with the best time to take it on being between February to May, when the country as a whole sees good weather. All you’ll need to take with you will be your bike (you can buy one there if necessary), a phone to navigate and minimal clothing (it’s almost always hot). You’ll have no troubles cycling this country!

Check out Caitlin Gordon’s post at  www.agirlabroad.com/adventure/vietnam-cycle-touring
Top adventure and eco experiences swimming above Victoria Falls

Swimming above Victoria Falls

A drop of water splashes into my eyes, and I wipe it away with a shaking hand. Stepping into the churning water at the top of Victoria Falls is one of the toughest challenges I’ve faced, not because it’s difficult but because it’s terrifying. Finally I put a leg in then slide in all the way and swim my way to very edge of the falls. Looking down is heart-stopping but exhilarating. At twice the height of Niagara Falls, the magnificent Victoria Falls pours over the border of Zambia and must be every bit as awe-inspiring as it was when David Livingstone first gazed upon it in 1855. Taking a trip to Devil’s Pool is as close as you’ll get to becoming one with the falls. A submerged rock ledge keeps adventurous travelers from catapulting over the top, while a guide is there to hang onto for the most fearful. (That would be me.) A Devil’s Pool dip can only be done during dry season, usually from late August to early January, and must only be done with a guide. I went with Tongabezi Tours, which does 5 trips to Livingstone Island every day, and combined it with a visit to Livingstone Island.

Check out WanderingCarol.com and her post – A Dip in Devil’s Pool here http://wanderingcarol. com/victoria-falls-devils- pool-extreme-adventure- vacations

 

 

Adventure and eco experiences for 2017 horseback riding in Lake Louise

Horseback riding in Lake Louise, Alberta

A trip to Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada is always a wonderful experience but seeing the area on horseback will make your visit even more memorable. The horseback ride to the Plain of Six Glaciers Tea House has been named a Canadian Signature Experience and will have you trotting past rocky mountains, multiple glaciers, piles of moraine and a glistening turquoise lake. The intended destination is a tea house at 7000 ft, built by Swiss mountain guides in 1924. It’s the perfect place to stretch your legs, enjoy a homemade snack or small meal and savour the view.

The guided trail rides run from mid/late June until mid-October (weather dependent). Plan to spend about four hours riding to the tea house and back again to the stables near the parking lot at Lake Louise. If you’ve never ridden a horse before no worries! You’ll be given some instructions on how to use the reigns and direct the horse where you want it to go. The horse I rode was well trained, following the guide was no problem.  We recommend doing the trail ride in September when there are fewer tourists, generally mild weather and golden fall foliage.

By Rhonda Krause with Travel Yes Please, read more about her glacier horse adventure post:

http://www.travelyesplease.com/travel-blog-plain-of-six-glaciers-tea-house-ride/

 

 

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences rafting the San Juan river

Rafting the San Juan river in Utah

One of the most memorable experiences we’ve ever had was rafting the San Juan River out of Bluff, Utah with Wild River Expeditions. Southern Utah delivers one stunning landscape after another. The stretch of river we covered in our eight-hour journey took us through rock canyon walls over 300 million years old. We made two stops at ancestral Pueblo Indian sites: Butler Wash, where we viewed petroglyphs (rock art) carved by Basket Maker II people over 1,500 hundred years ago, and River House, with cliff dwellings dating to 900AD. It was the end of October and we had the river to ourselves except for a lone man in a canoe and some wildlife including a golden eagle and a great blue heron. The water, though rated Class 2 and Class 3 was fairly smooth and we motored most of the way. The beauty of the river, combined with the archeological sites, the geology and a fun and knowledgeable guide made our eight hours on the river fly by. There wasn’t a boring moment. Want fast rapids? Go in May when the water is at its fastest. You’ll be rowing and not motoring. For more adventurous folks Wild Rivers offers multi-day excursions. The season on the river runs from April through October.

Billie Frank with Santa Fe Travelers

 

 

 

Adventure and eco experiences for 2017 in Antartica

Antarctica adventure

Antarctica is one of those rare experiences where the destination is the adventure in itself! One of the last untouched destinations on earth, the continent is absolutely pristine and is one of the top eco tourism destinations for 2017.

While the experience is up there in expense, expeditions are available to the average person seeking an exceptional adventure, and travel here is something that only a select few can say they have achieved.

100 years ago no more than a handful of people had journeyed to Antarctica, however today around 30,000 travelers visit Antarctica every year. Cruises leave from Punta Arenas in Chile or Ushuaia in Argentina and set off for the South Shetland Islands, stopping at several research stations while sailing along the Antarctic Peninsular. You will experience spectacular glacial lagoons, dramatic icebergs, and incredible wildlife like breaching whales, penguin colonies, and deep-diving seals.

Tip: Make sure you book a cruise which includes land based excursions. International regulations limit the number of people allowed on land at any one time, so large cruise ships with 500 passengers generally offer a “look but not touch” experience. Booking with a cruise company who limits their passengers to around the 110 mark (we booked with Chimu Adventures) means the opportunity to step out off the boat for hikes through ice fields, kayaking adventures, and camping overnight on the most remote continent in the world!

By: Megan and Mike Jerrard from Mapping Megan

 

 

 

 

Adventure and eco experiences for 2017 outdoors in Alaska

Sailing a small cruise ship through Alaska

An expedition cruise in Southeastern Alaska explores the Last Frontier in a eco-responsible way. Take an UnCruise Adventures sailing in May or June to explore the most remote and pristine wilderness you can find in the United States. The ships are small and purpose built for navigating to small islands and into deep fjords where you will go on epic hikes (be on the lookout for bears) and spot orcas and humpback whales, along with harbor seals, eagles and many other types of birds. You’ll also get incredibly close to calving glaciers.
Expedition guides lead your voyage, and these people also have a deep understanding and passion for nature, the environment and wild animals. The guides give fascinating talks about the geography, animals and history of the regions you visit.
I returned from my trip — during which I spent the days on the most rugged hikes or kayaking or paddle boarding, and even snorkeling in chilly waters to observe the creatures in the intertidal regions — knowing I had to return again and do something like this again soon.
John Roberts is a freelance travel writer and owner of InTheLoopTravel.com. He writes about cruising, adventure travel and fitness and likes to provide tips and guides to help people travel better and more often.

 

Adventure and eco experiences for 2017 canyoning in the Tirols

Hiking and canyoning in Austria

Austria is famous for its winter sports season, with thousands of people enjoying the skiing and snowboarding in stunning alpine retreats every year, but after heading there in the summer when most tourists had left I got to enjoy some of the best adventure activities the Alps has to offer. I spent a good part of the summer in the Wilder Kaiser region of Tirol which I think has some of the most spectacular mountain scenery in Austria, and when you have mountains that jaw droppingly stunning, what better way to enjoy them than to climb them?
I started off with a few smaller climbs through the Kopfkraxen route and others, then worked my way up to a via ferrata on the Klettersteig Klamml in Ellmau. A stunning route with amazing mountain views. A via feratta is a climbing route with iron ladders, pegs and a fixed steel cable already attached to the rock face which you can securely attach yourself to as you climb from one point to another, and of course there was a trained and experienced guide with me the whole way. It isn’t as difficult as it sounds and different routes with varying degrees of difficulty are available for all levels. 
Indulging in adventure activities like mountain climbing and canyoning is easy in a country like Austria, and the health benefits of getting some great exercise and fresh mountain air along seeing the idyllic mountain range from a perfect viewing point make putting this on your bucket list an absolute must do.
By Mike Huxley with https://bemusedbackpacker.com/

 

 

 

 

Hikiing up the Kayenta Trail at Zion National park

 

 Hiking through Zion National Park

Zion National Park always seems to inspire me any time of the year. I tend to go back in spring and late fall when the crush of visiters tend to be not as busy as the peak seasons and you can have more access to some of the popular to not so busy trails throughout the park. You can lose with any of the trails you choose to go on, they are all spectacular and range from flat and easy to more challenging and all day trips. For a quick overview of the park and some of the more popular trails in the canyon, check out my recent post here covering the hiking trails of Zion National Park.

By Noel Morata of Travel Photo Discovery

 

 

Top adventure and eco experiences for 2017 Arkaroola in Australia

Arkaroola Adventure in Australia

If you’re up for a uniquely Australian experience head right off the tourist trail and into the remote Outback wilderness with some of the most spectacular scenery – and adventure – you’ll find down under! Arkaroola Wilderness Resort, 725 km (450 miles) north of South Australia’s capital city Adelaide, is an adult adventure-land. Start your adventure with an 8 hour plus road trip from Adelaide to Arkaroola – the last 125 km (77 miles) from Copley, the nearest town to Arkaroola, leaves the bitumen behind. Hire a 4WD from the Copley Caravan Park if you don’t have one – you’ll need it for the next stage of your adventure!

Test your skills on one (or more) of the several challenging 4WD tracks through largely unexplored mountain ranges that leave from the Arkaroola Tourist Village – where mending flat tyres is a specialty! You’ll find steep and winding tracks plunging down sheer mountainsides into deep gorges and chasms, with multiple creek crossings and rugged rocks.

Or take a hike through the amazing ancient landscapes of the Flinders Ranges – with geological oddities, wildlife and stunning vistas – into wilderness saved from mining by Arkaroola’s dedicated owners and staff. But for the best adventure of all, outsource the driving and take Arkaroola’s signature Ridge-top Tour. It’s a bone-shaking, teeth-rattling four hour return trip over roads so rugged, steep and winding it takes all the driver’s skill to keep on the track through some of the most remote and spectacular Outback country in OZ. It’s not just a tour – it’s a workout too because it’s not always easy to keep your seat in the purpose built 4WD tour vehicle – so you’ll get to know your travelling companions REALLY well!

The panoramic view from Sillers lookout is wild Australia at its absolute best – an outstanding outback ecotourism experience of unspoiled wilderness, geological fantasy and heart-stopping adventure rolled into one amazing package. Don’t miss it!

By Marion Halliday with www.redzaustralia.com

 

 

 

Top eco and adventure experiences at Simien Mountains

Trekking the Simien Mountains National Park

The Simien mountains, also known as the roof top of Africa is one of the most scenic regions of Ethiopia. The region is so unique that this UNESCO World Heritage Site was one of the first sites in the world to be inscribed with this distinction. The park includes Ras Dashen the highest peak in Ethiopia at 4,550 m (14,930 ft). Independent travel is possible although all hikers are required to have an armed scout as part of their group. Although these days you are not going to encounter anything that would require his services. Hikers can also hire cooks, mules, guides, and other support staff for their treks as well. Throughout the park there is wonderful flora and fauna many of which can be found nowhere else in the world. Among endemic wildlife are the Gelada Baboons, Walia Ibex, and the elusive Ethiopian Wolf. Trekking is available all year but the best times to go are from October through December after the rainy season for good weather and green landscapes. Of note is that while the days are warm, nights on the mountains are very cold. The majority of the campsites on the mountains are also about 3000m so hikers should be prepared in case of altitude sickness.

By Anwar of BeyondMyFrontDoor.com

 

I hope  that these adventure and eco experiences are whetting your appetite to do more traveling in 2017 and to explore the world. If you enjoyed this  post on Adventure and Eco travel for 2017, could you please share it with any of the social media buttons located around the post.

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29 Responses to Top adventure and eco experiences for 2017

  1. Day Tours Nepal March 19, 2017 at 8:47 pm #

    Wow lovely and Nepal is there

  2. Marina February 26, 2017 at 10:04 pm #

    Wow!! Those are definitely into my bucket lists. Thanks or sharing!

  3. Patricia - Ze Wandering Frogs January 17, 2017 at 7:00 am #

    Thank you for including Ze Wandering Frogs and our Manta Ray Diving Experience! This is an incredible list of great adventures! We have been lucky to mush our dog sled in Arctic Canada and kayak in Baja Mexico already, but can’t wait to trek the Simien Mountains in Ethiopia or bike the Death Road in Bolivia! This is just making our travel list of adventure travel even longer!

  4. Patti Morrow January 16, 2017 at 7:50 am #

    Nice collection of adventures. You had me hooked with the first photo — I’ve had a similar experience with giant manta rays and it was incredible!

  5. Jennifer January 10, 2017 at 7:40 am #

    What a great round up and thanks for including my Stromboli adventure! There’s so many things on this list I’d still like to do like kayaking in Baja and visiting the Devil’s Pool. I’m always up for a good adventure.

  6. Lydia@LifeUntraveled January 10, 2017 at 7:25 am #

    Wow so many great adventure options to choose from I wouldn’t know where to start! I have boarded down Cerro Negro in Nicaragua and I swam with manta rays in Colombia but they weren’t nearly as big as the ones in Hawaii – 12 feet!?!? That’s huge!

  7. Sara Broers January 9, 2017 at 2:07 pm #

    What a fantastic roundup! Antarctica looks like an amazing adventure. I visited several national parks in 2016 in the United States and I’m kicking myself that I did not make it to Zion National Park, as your photo immediately pulled me in. Where to go…. so many great destinations and so much time. Oh yes, and dog sledding, that also looked fun. I could go on and on- great post!

  8. Debra Schroeder January 9, 2017 at 1:13 pm #

    Noel, loved how you did your roundup. How it’s not all about you. 🙂 Kudos to Patrica, those manta rays are HUGE! So envious of Gemma and Craig, I was in Nicaragua in 2015 but didn’t get a chance to volcano sandboard. Hoping to do it this or next year.

  9. alison abbott January 9, 2017 at 10:07 am #

    My goodness what an adventurous offering you’ve provided Noel. All of the outdoor activities sound like something I’d take a crack at, but sitting in cold temperatures makes me long for something outside of the snow belt. I’d like to think i’d be brave enough to take a dip in Devil’s Pool, but I know for sure I would love hiking on the Isle of Skye at Old Man of Storr.

  10. anto January 8, 2017 at 7:35 am #

    As a true lover of the outdoors, I’d love to do all of the above. I really enjoyed hiking in Zion NP, it’s an awesome place, I can’t wait to go back there one day!

  11. Dana January 8, 2017 at 7:16 am #

    So many awesome adventures in 2016. I need to up my adventure game to keep up with these bloggers 🙂 Night diving would be cool, and I’ve ALWAYS wanted to go dog sledding.

  12. jenni January 7, 2017 at 5:34 am #

    Wow these are all very adventurous im getting tired just reading them. I would love to swim above Victoria Falls I think I am going to add this to my list of 2018 things to do as nearly fully booked already for 2017

    • Noel January 7, 2017 at 7:15 am #

      I know, I would love to do that some day also.

  13. Drew January 7, 2017 at 5:26 am #

    What an epic collection of adventure experiences! So many amazing and inspiring activities. Must say, diving with manta rays would be at the top of my list. Of course, I would have to get certified for scuba diving first, but still, swimming with those beasts at night would be spectacular. Of course, relaxing in the Devil’s Pool at Victoria Falls would make for a fantastic view!

    • Noel January 7, 2017 at 7:15 am #

      It’s on my list and I actually live on the island and haven’t done it yet.

  14. Marianne January 4, 2017 at 3:09 pm #

    Such a great list of adventures – now I just need my kids to grow up a bit so we can go try some of them! Thanks for including me!

  15. Gemma January 4, 2017 at 7:38 am #

    Definitely want to do more of these water base adventures! Thanks for featuring us Noel.

    • Noel January 4, 2017 at 8:30 am #

      You should, maybe I should join you too?

  16. Rhonda Albom January 3, 2017 at 8:50 pm #

    Wow! What a collection for the adrenaline junkie. I’m not sure which I would choose to do. They all sound incredible.

    • Noel January 4, 2017 at 8:31 am #

      I’m sure you could enjoy them all and also take some wonderful photographs of your experience

  17. Anita @ No Particular Place To Go January 2, 2017 at 11:09 pm #

    So many amazing adventures and I was rather excited to discover that I’d been to some of the places mentioned (Leon, Nicaragua, Bocas del Toro, The Big Island and Zion National Park) although I’m by no means a thrill seeker. 🙂 The Camino de Santiago is more my speed and, the more I read about it, the more I think about doing it. As your post shows, adventures come in all forms and can be found in many beautiful places. Great post, Noel!

    • Noel January 4, 2017 at 8:31 am #

      Good for you, now you need to try most of these activities and put them on your bucket list

  18. Red Nomad OZ January 2, 2017 at 3:15 pm #

    Thanks for including my Aussie adventure in Arkaroola in your awesome round-up!! Look forward to seeing some of the others one day – if I can get my courage up!!!

  19. Megan Jerrard January 2, 2017 at 12:52 pm #

    Thanks for putting together such a fabulous round up Noel – We’re focusing on prioritizing sustainable destinations in 2017 too 🙂

  20. Carol Perehudoff January 2, 2017 at 7:52 am #

    Thanks for including my swim in Devil’s Pool. All of these other expeditions and activities look amazing.

  21. Nathalie January 2, 2017 at 12:24 am #

    Those are quite the adventures, I’d love to cycle from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam or kayak from Coron to El Nido, Philippines but they all sound amazing!

    • Noel January 4, 2017 at 8:33 am #

      I know those both sound really good and of course they are also very popular foodie countries to visit 🙂

  22. Rebecca January 1, 2017 at 11:37 pm #

    There are some wonderful experiences mentioned here. I personally love National Parks and would love to visit Zion one day.

    • Noel January 4, 2017 at 8:34 am #

      I love visiting national parks and also doing some type of adventure activity, we should plan something together soon.

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