When planning a trip do you secretly yearn for exotic locales but always seem to end up on the same old vacation? This summer, don’t spend another week sprawled out on the beach. With a proliferation of options and the recent unveiling of National Geographic Adventures, there’s never been a better time to head out on an adventure of your own.
Here are five ideas to get you started. Off you go!
For the Nature Lover:
Adventure activities abound at Costa Rica‘s popular eco lodges. Rappel down a gushing waterfall or zipline along the rainforest canopy before relaxing in a hammock listening to the sounds of howler monkeys frolicking above. And don’t miss a once in a lifetime chance to sleep out in the jungle under the stars.
Try: Lapa Rios. Rates begin at $210/night per person.
For the Adrenaline Junkie:
Get up close and personal with the Grand Canyon on a whitewater rafting trip. World class rapids and stunning scenery are around every bend as you raft and camp along the banks of the Colorado River. Whether you go all the way through the canyon, or decide to end the trip mid-way at Phantom Ranch and hike your way out, you’re guaranteed a white-knuckled trip. Hold on tight!
Try: O.A.R.S., 9 different multi-day Grand Canyon trips are available and begin at $1,796 per person.
For the Wildlife Photographer:
The safari is the ultimate adventure; being this close to lions and rhinos is sure to get your blood pumping! While there are many parts of Africa where you can find amazing wildlife, Tanzania is a top destination due to its Serengeti National Park and the densely populated Ngorongoro Crater. Both are good bets to see the “big five” (aka rhinos, lions, leopards, elephants and buffalo) along with wildebeest, zebra and gazelles.
Try: GAP Adventures, “Tanzania Wildlife Experience.” All-inclusive rates begin at $1,700 per person for an 8 day trip (airfare not included.)
For the Whole Family:
If you’re traveling with kids, a Dude Ranch is the perfect family adventure vacation. There are over 100 certified Dude Ranches sprinkled across the western US and Canada which promise the authentic “cowboy experience,” lasso training and all. We’re sure you’ll be a master horse rider in no time.
Try: Triple J Ranch, Montana. All-inclusive rates begin at $1,300 per adult for a 4 day stay.
For the Hiker:
Peru is an ambitious destination for hiking enthusiasts. Fight the effects of high altitude and trek lodge to lodge along the ancient “Salkantay Route” through the Cordillera de Vilcabamba mountains. Pass glacial lakes, snow-capped peaks and watch out for Andean Condors before ending up at the grand finale: Machu Picchu.
Try: Mountain Lodges of Peru. All-inclusive rates begin at $2,560 per person for 7 day trek (airfare not included.)