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Adventure Travel

If the idea of vegging by the pool or beach sounds like your worst nightmare, then adventure travel is for you. Travel is all about new experiences, and adventure travel has this in spades - whether you want to go trekking through the jungle of just try your hand at some watersports.

Adventure travel covers extreme sports, activity-packed holidays and unique trips - and these once in a lifetime experiences are guaranteed to satisfy adrenaline junkies and thrill seekers. But what kind of adventure do you want to embark on? Here's some inspiration for out of this world travel...

Extreme Sports

Volando2 by dwaynemac.There are loads of opportunities for extreme sports holidays - just pick any sport and the world is your oyster. There's ski and snowboarding holidays, where you can try any kind of snow-based sport, from ice-skating and toboganning to riding a snow-mobile.

But why not try something even more extreme? White-water rafting, sky-diving, bungee jumping and paragliding are all within your reach. For more ideas on extreme sports, check out our guides to activity travel.

Where to Stay:
The Bloukrans Bungee Jump in South Africa is the highest commerical bungee jump in the world - book a hostel in Plettenberg Bay to tackle it. The Yangtze River, in Kunming, China, is Asia's longest river, sweeping past the Tibetan mountains and most of China. Try the 'Great Bend' for some of the best white-water rafting in the world, and stay in a hostel in Kunming.

Hit the Water

Post-kayak to the deserted island by ippei + janine.There's lots of fun to be had under the sea - go scuba diving or snorkeling and you'll discover a magical underwater world - if you're a beginner you can enroll on courses on holiday, and learn to dive with the professionals.

But there's plenty to do on the surface - every beach resort worth its salt seems to offer some kind of water sport these days, from the goofy banana boat rides to jet-skiing. Or you could take things up a notch and go wind-surfing, kayaking and canoeing.

Surfing lessons are available all over the world, from the pristine beaches in Morocco to the chillier climes of Cornwall, and then there's sailing and yachting to try...

Where to Stay:
With such amazing beaches, it's no surprise that Australia is water-sports heaven - nothing beats scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef - stay in a hostel in Cairns and you can explore the cleanest body of water in the world.Then there's the surfing on offer - stay in Manly Bay if you really want great waves.

South America's rocky rivers are a kayaker's dream - try Belize or Brazil for an action-packed break. Sailing buffs or even beginner will love the conditions and warm climate in the Med - try Croatia or Greece for a scenic sail.

Rock Hard

Rock Climbing Sunken Gardens by Michael Sarver.The earth is home to some pretty surreal rocky landscapes and mountains - but why admire them from afar when you could explore them yourself? One of the best ways to discover an impressive natural landmark is to get up there yourself - try rock, climbing, canoeing pony trekking or mountains biking.

Even the most experienced climbers should make sure they don't hit the hills alone - look out for climbing schools or experienced instructors in your chosen destination. Or go deeper underground - caving is growing in popularity, and a chance to explore these surreal structures will be unforgettable.

Where to Stay:
Stay in a hostel in Salzburg, Austria, and you can exlore the Werfen Ice Caves, and then ride the steepest cable car in the world. The Yucatan Peninsula's Riviera Maya is home to the underwater Yucatan caves - choose a Playa Del Carmen hostel and try out 'cave diving'.

Into the Wild

Giraffes - Kruger National Park by Rob Inh00d.Get out into the fresh air for a real adventure - there's a real thrill to being at one with nature, and encountering some of the most impressive natural landscapes and widlife in the world.

You don't have to go far - camp in one of America's National Parks, go rambling across the English countryside or hiking in the Highlands. Or for something a little more exotic, try going out on Safari in Africa, and spot the 'Big Five' game, or go jungle trekking in South America.

Where to Stay:
The Macchu Picchu Trail in Peru is popular with backpackers all over the world - Aguas Calientes hostels are ideally located to explore the Inca Trail in the mountains. America is full of amazing National Parks perfect for any outdoorsy activities - check out our guide to staying in America's National Parks - our favourite is Glacier National Park, in Montana. For an unforgettable safari trip, stay in Kruger National Park hostels in South Africa.

Take a Ride

Husky riding by much ado about nothing.You can have just as good an adventure without your feet touching the ground - just take one of these crazy rides (we're all over this one already - with our guide to the World's Best Original Rides). Pick a cycle friendly country like Holland, and discover the land on two wheels (Spring is a great to go and see some tulips in bloom). Try elephant trekking in Thailand, or discover the desert dunes in Morocco from a Camel's hump. The snowy plains of Alaska and Canada were made for dog-sledding - just sit back and watch glaciers and mountains rush by!

Where to Stay:
Morroco is a popular place for camel riding, and there are plenty of comfortable Riads and hostels in Marrakech. Stay in a hostel in Amsterdam and hire a bike, and you can cycle the Tulip Trail when the flowers start to bloom in April. There are loads of hostels in Anchorage, Alaska, the perfect place to try a husky ride. Ignore the touristy elephant tour sin Phuket, Thailand, and head North to Chiang Mai, for an elephant ride through the jungle.


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