We happened to be in London for the Adventure Travel Show last week and boy did we come away with some exciting additions to our travel wish list. The show was jam-packed with speakers and exhibitors presenting every type of travel experience you can imagine, and some we’d never even thought of.
Our heads were spinning with tales of horse festivals in Mongolia, adventure internships in China and Gorilla trekking in Uganda. Of course for those looking for a slightly more standard adventure (I think that’s an oxymoron) there were plenty of options such as African safaris, sailing in Greece and hiking in the English countryside. Basically if you wanted walk, hike, climb, cycle, ride, dive, sail or even dog sled pretty much anywhere in the world there was someone there ready to make it happen.
The Adventure Travel Show was on for two days but as we had mistakenly chosen to only attend one day we really had to hustle to see everything. We even split up for some of the talks so that we could cover more ground. There were so many incredible and exciting opportunities to see the world that we just had to share some of our favorites with you. Hopefully you too will be inspired to be adventurous and try something completely new this year.
The Flash Pack
“Flashpacker: A new lifestyle that fuses together the spirit of a backpacker with the sophistication of the Jet Set.”
We had the pleasure of speaking with the co-founders of The Flash Pack, Rahda Vyas and Lee Thompson and they have truly nailed the flashpacker concept. They create holidays that combine unique adventures off the beaten track with the luxury and comfort of boutique amenities and services. It’s perfect for those of us who don’t want to give up one for the other. Although they welcome all ages their primary focus is on the oft neglected group of people in their 30’s & 40’s. A group who have left behind the days of sleeping on a hard bunk in a room of 15 and are nowhere near the days of ‘early bird’ dinners in a tourist resort. Their tours cover everything from a Vespa road trip in Spain to glamping and wine tasting in Chile or a foodie trip to Morocco…and so so much more! Just go to their website and I guarantee you’ll find something to put on your travel wish list.
Britain’s largest walking and leisure holidays specialist offers hundreds of options for active holidays in Europe. You will have your choice of charming country houses to sleep in at night along with top notch dining and evening activities. During the day you can join guided walking tours or opt for the suggested maps and routes for a self guided walking tour. It’s great for families, groups or solo travelers of all ages and we love it because it promotes physical activity in balance with comfort and good food. You go home rejuvenated and de-stressed from all the walking and fresh air as opposed to sluggish and overweight from the sedate over indulgence that can sometimes happen at all inclusive resorts.
Macs Adventure offers self guided walking, hiking and cycling tours all over the world. Their tours cover hand picked accommodations at every destination and also door to door luggage transfers so that your belongings will be waiting for you at your next destination after a days adventure. All of their tours are self guided as they believe that their customers are independent minded and prefer the flexibility to go at their own pace, on their own schedule and with their own chosen companions. However all of the essential planning is taken care of for you. You will be provided with detailed maps, route notes and destination guides allowing you to plan a custom made itinerary perfect for your own needs. We love this idea as all the work is done for you but you have complete independence!
Pioneer is an adventure travel company which specializes in unique, remote and extraordinary destinations and experiences around the world. Their tours focus on both nature and culture and combine a balance of ‘comfortably roughing it’ in the wilds with a few days of relaxing in luxury at the end of the tour. They are also committed to environmentally ethical and responsible travel which maximizes the benefits to local communities and reduces the impact on the environment. If you want to raft in Madagascar, see the leopards in Sri Lanka or kayak through the Komodo Islands these are your people.
Do you dream of owning a sailboat and cruising around the Greek Islands? Yea us too. Unfortunately owning a boat is a huge expense even beyond the initial purchase. Trust me we researched becoming cruisers ourselves and decided we’d have to stick to land travel for now. Sailing Holidays offers the solution! You can charter your own sailboat with little or no sailing experience and sail around the Greek Islands with the help and guidance of the Sailing Holidays flotilla lead crews. They provide instruction and support on easy to sail yachts in a relaxed a safe environment. This allows you to have the privacy and independence of your own boat while being reassured that help is at hand if you are not an experienced sailor. It sounds perfect to us!
To keep you inspired in between travel adventures the UK based Wanderlust Travel magazine is a must. It is full of incredible photography, articles and advice on every kind of travel adventure you can imagine. Trust me they cover the world and everything in it. If you’re not familiar with this publication we would highly recommend you check it out. I had the pleasure of attending a talk by the editor Phoebe Smith who is an adventure seeker herself. Phoebe spoke of her passion for touring destinations by foot as she feels that she sees so much more than by using other modes of transportation. Her topic was very timely for me as we are planning a walking tour of Britain in June and I am now more excited about it than ever. I will definitely be following both Phoebe and Wanderlust Travel magazine to keep the creative travel juices flowing.
These wonderful companies were just a little taste of what the Adventure Travel Show had to offer. If you love to travel and have exciting new experiences I would highly recommend seeking out a similar show in your area. Or if you’re in London next January make a point of stopping by. I guaruntee that you will be inspired!