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6 Destinations for adventure according to National Geographic

From the ancient temples of Bhutan to the multitude of National Parks in Utah, here are the top 6 destinations for adventure according to National Geographic.


1. New Zealand

It’s little wonder that thrill seekers flock to New Zealand for an invigorating adventure. The world’s first commercial bungy jump was launched in Queenstown - the home of adrenaline seekers - and is now commonplace across the country. On a New Zealand walking tour you’ll enjoy plenty of leisurely hikes in between experiences such as sailing through fantastical fjords, exploring the original Hobbit holes in Matamata, and spotting wildlife or swimming at Abel Tasman National Park. For those looking to step it up a gear, there are optional excursions available such as a scenic heli-hike over the Franz Josef and Fox glaciers.

2. Peru

One of Peru’s many Inca sites is the perfect destination for adventure in 2023. Choquequirao’s ruins require a great effort up steep paths, once you get there these ancient structures are well worth the trek. For a more accessible journey spread across four days, the Inca Trail trek rewards you with the site of Machu Picchu, known as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Supported by an expert crew, you’ll camp under the stars by ancient ruins, visit a small Inca village, and cross the famous Dead Woman’s Pass. 

3. Utah, US

Boasting no less than five expansive National Parks, Utah has deservedly made the cut for one of the best destinations for adventure. Zion National Park encompasses eight geological formations and four major vegetation zones, with a rich diversity of flora and fauna just waiting to be discovered. As you explore the Western USA National Parks you’ll be introduced to Utah’s unparalleled outdoors within Zion and Bryce Canyon National Park. Discover more outdoor inspiration in our ultimate guide to US National Parks.

4. Austria

The Austrian Alps have made National Geographic’s top seven for adventure, thanks to its network of 36 mountaineering villages. From hiking to cross-country skiing, the Austrian Alps are a thrill-seekers paradise. However, if you’re looking to simply sit back and admire the scenery, try the city of Villach. Known as the gateway to nearby lakes as well as the Villach Alps, it comprises countless traditional restaurants and alpine attractions. On a London to Istanbul rail adventure you’ll enjoy a whistlestop visit to this scenic city.

5. Mexico

Mexico made National Geographic's top seven destinations for adventure not once, but twice, with Revillagigedo National Park and Oaxaca coming in fifth and sixth. Oaxaca is a haven of Indigenous folk art and traditional, flavourful Mexican cuisine, making it an idyllic destination for adventurous travellers. As you discover the contrasts of Mexico you’ll journey to this charming colonial city. Take in the colourful markets and entertaining street vendors as you wander on foot, before visiting the temples, pyramids and rock carvings of Monte Alban the next day. Some ancient treasures found at Monte Alban can also be seen in the regional museum.

6. Bhutan

Not only is Bhutan a brilliant example of sustainable tourism in action, it’s also bursting with lush flora and fauna, impressive mountainscapes, and glimpses into Bhutan’s ancient history. On a trip to Darjeeling and Bhutan you’ll take a sightseeing tour of Thimpu to see Bhutan’s religious centre, Tashichho Dzong. On the way to Punakha, climb your way through rhododendron forest for spectacular views across the mountain, weather permitting.

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