So you think you’re an adventure traveller?

Well before you say yes just think a little.  One person’s adventure might be another person’s ho hum day.  We all have different levels of what we consider to be adventure and this might be the activities on a vacation, the place we stay on vacation or even the destination itself.

Take India…a pretty ambitious destination.  Not everyone’s cup of tea.  Lots of poverty and muck and taking a trip to the toilet can be an adventure in itself.  But when you are staying somewhere like this ….

Taj Udaipur
Taj Lake Palace Hotel Udaipur

…. it doesn’t feel like an adventure – it feels like a dream.

Let’s take somewhere closer to home – Jasper National Park.  Beautiful area and I love staying at the Lodge but my first trip there was somewhat different –
Humble lodgings indeed – add to that a tremendous downpour so that it felt like a river running underneath the groundsheet.  Yep – I felt like an adventurer that night for sure.

What about Africa?  Many exciting adventures during my years living in South Africa and Swaziland.  Like the time we drove by car from Swaziland to Mozambique during the time of the civil war back in the ’80s.  Now that was exciting – going through the border post with very little Portuguese and dealing with roadblocks, “soldiers” with no uniforms but very big machine guns!  We got into Maputo safely (believe it or not) and stayed in the decaying grandeur of the old Polana Hotel along with half of the diplomatic personnel from Russia and Eastern Europe.  I still haven’t learned how to say poached eggs in Portuguese but I do like recalling this trip as one of my adventures.

Just riding a bike in the Netherlands was another adventure for me.  I hadn’t been on a bike in years and years and I have never been so scared in my life but at the end of the tour I was on Cloud Nine.  I had an adventure!

What sort of adventure would you like to do?  Here are some of the most popular adventure style trips –

Climbing Kilimanjaro – this is not mountain climbing but you do have to be aware that altitude sickness can slow you down.  I am told the feeling when you get to the top is incredible.  Maybe I will add that to my list.

Wow – what an achievement – now I want to do this!

The Inca Trail – here is another trail that is demanding because of the high altitude but with the right guide and the correct preparation you can do this too.  A unique and personally satisfying way of seeing Machu Picchu.

Diving with the sharks in Cape Town – this is very popular and sometimes hard to get a booking.  Would you do it?

Why is adventure travel so good for you?  Whether you adventure by day and sleep in six star comfort at night doesn’t really matter.  The important thing is that you get a little bit out of your comfort zone.

CANDICE GAUKEL ANDREWS sums it up very well with the top ten reasons you should participate in adventure travel –

When you get dirty, you improve your physical health.Scientists have recently reported that our modern obsession with cleanliness might be leading to a rise in allergies, asthma, and inflammatory bowel disease.

Outdoor activities can prevent (or treat) a wide range of health problems. Get off the couch and put down that iphone.

There are no age limits on adventure. Anyone can make nature a playground. Adventure travel is an activity you can stick with for life. Take a hike, get a bigger brain. Research indicates that hiking or walking grows brains. Typically, your hippocampus gets smaller once you hit your mid fifties, leading to memory loss. …. sorry what was I saying ????

Going on adventures raises your tolerance for uncertainty. Placing yourself in situations where things don’t always go as planned — such as on an adventure trip — helps you learn to cope with the uncertainties in life. And there is no shortage of those.

Adventure travel lets you safely “try on” alternate lives. One of the best things about embarking on an adventure is that you can shed your familiar skin for a while and pretend to be anything you want to be — before you take a drastic and permanent step. Who would you be if you lived there?

Going on adventures fosters reflectiveness, a mental skill often in short supply today. Adventures give us pleasant memories, which we often bring back to the forefront of our minds for reminiscing.

Adventure travel feeds your dreams and builds your confidence.  Adventures build your confidence; and with each successive one, you challenge yourself just a little bit more.

Adventure experiences remedy a societal ill: loss of adventurous children and the extinguishing of wanderlust.Today, the United States is facing what some have described as an epidemic: the loss of the adventurous childhood.

Adventure travellers may be more important than ever for saving the world. Adventure travellers are more likely to campaign against global warming because they are closer to nature.

So if in Italy hike the Pathway of the Gods – it is not hard ….
Pathway of the Gods - - more climbinin

But when you finish you will feel AMAZING!

Pathway of the Gods - I did it
I did it!

By Lesley Keyter

Lesley Keyter is the face of travel in the fast growing city of Calgary. Every week since 1997 she has has featured live on the Morning News Global TV.


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