The best destinations for adventure travel need to be relaxing and interesting. They have to have nice and enough activities to do, and also good food and lodging. Preparation is all about gathering information, preferably from other travelers. But in the end, you will have to figure out for yourself which are helpful tips and which are not.
Best Overall Adventure Travel Destinations
An overall adventure travel destination needs to be relaxing, interesting, it has to have nice and enough activities to do, and also good food and lodging.
Luang Prabang, Laos
This charming city in Laos has a great atmosphere. It is a bit difficult to reach, yet many tourists have found their way there. Up till now, however, it remains a relaxed place to be. And it has lots of interesting temples, good scenery over the Mekong river, and nearby waterfalls and other activities. We had a marvelous time here. After passing the border at Chang Khong, there is a direct boat to Luang Prabang. This small city (only 16.000 inhabitants) is the cultural center of Laos. Many wats (temples) between the French colonial and traditional houses.
Bukit Lawang, Indonesia
From Medan in North Sumatra, Indonesia, a terrible bus ride brings us in Bukit Lawang. It is where the Oran Utan rehabilitation center is located. But there are more activities in and around this village. We have a beautiful room with a view over the river to the Oran Utans feeding on the mountain slope on the other side. In one word fantastic. Unfortunately, Bukit Lawang was almost entirely destroyed by flooding in 2003 and is now recovering.
Bukit Lawang is located in North Sumatra, close to Aceh, at the edge of Gunung Leuser National Park. Here is where a lot of Sumatran Orangutans still live. This is mainly thanks to the rehabilitation center in Bukit Lawang. This center also attracts some tourism, but that does not influence the tranquil environment and the amount of wildlife here.
This typical Chinese village has become a backpacker’s paradise. Beautiful scenery, many activities, good budget hostels, and a laid back atmosphere. Situated in the beautiful karst mountains of South China, Yangshuo is the ideal place for a laid back backpacker village.
Cesky Krumlov, CZ
In the Czech Republic, this medieval village is surrounded by a winding river. It has a beautiful castle, several museums, good hiking, and other activities, and nice hostels. Bohemia in the south of the Czech Republic is a mountainous area with forests, rocks, rivers, and old towns. One of the best-preserved towns is Cesky Krumlov, situated on a peninsula between the meandering river the Vltava. It has charming streets and a nice castle on the river banks.
There are a lot of activities possible in the direct surroundings of Cesky Krumlov. Hostel life here is also great, we meet other people, cook our own food, and share it with others. It is the combination of a nice relaxing town and the friendly backpacker surroundings that make our stay here just great.
Lake Tana, Ethiopia
In the north of Ethiopia, Lake Tana is near the origin of the Nile, and near the Blue Nile Falls. On an island in the lake are some old Coptic churches. We stay at a campsite next to the lake, from where we spot monkeys, pelicans, sea eagles and other wildlife where we didn’t expect it.
Unusual travel destinations to consider
Going off the beaten track, unusual travel destinations are often the most adventurous. What are the best destinations visited by little tourists? Here is our list:
Omo Valley, Ethiopia
There are probably more places in Africa where ancient tribes live that haven’t been visited by white people very often. But there are many such tribes, among which the lip plate tribes of Mursi and Suri. The Omo Valley in Southern Ethiopia is difficult to reach. With our overland truck, we wade through some rivers and pass several tribes to reach the town of Jinka in the Omo Valley
Take the alternative route from Phnom Penh to Angkor Wat and visit Battambang. There are many impressive sights around, and seeing how the people live here is an experience. Less well known than the killing fields, the killing caves near Battambang are even more impressive, showing the cruelties of the Khmer Rouge regime. Battambang itself is the second largest city of Cambodia, but it feels more like a big village. It’s a pleasant city to walk around, while it has no major places of interest. When we make a tour around the city, however, we find out about the killing caves and see more memorial sites from the era of the Khmer Rouge, plus an alternative use of the railroad
Hinterlands of Suriname
Surinam is the former colony of the Netherlands. Former slaves on the plantations fled to the hinterlands, and descendants are still living there in small villages on the river banks. Only reachable by boat, it certainly off the beaten track.
Between St Petersburg and Moscow, we stayed in a small village near the river Wolga. Be prepared for some basic facilities and a harsh environment in winter. Here, in Rural Russia, we take a huge leap back in time and go back to basics in the snow. The little village in Rural Russia where we arrived is called Dubrovnik. Even on the most detailed Russian maps, this place cannot be found. So we take a giant leap back in time, with all the inconveniences in the cold as a consequence.
Obviously, Athens and the different islands attract the most tourists in Greece. But there are some gems in the Peloponnese as well. Nafplio is the former capital of Greece but is almost forgotten. It is located on a peninsula and features a fort on the rocks. From here, you can visit the ancient site of Mycenea, too.