The 2016 Olympic games in Rio will be one of the biggest events in the sporting calendar. The city is blessed with great weather, long meandering beaches, and an infectious party atmosphere. If you are lucky enough to be attending, here are 20 things to do in Rio while at the Olympics.
If you are interested in having a true adventure by going hot air ballooning, it is important that you take the time to look into some of the different places around the world that offer the best sights and weather for this. There is no experience that is quite like going up into the air in one of these balloons, and it is crucial that you take enough time to research the various locations that you can travel to.
Loire Valley, France
Loire Valley is located approximately 200 miles southwest of Paris, and it stretches out almost 170 miles with over 800 different castles as well as manor houses. The scenery in this area is the primary reason why most people choose it for hot air ballooning. You will find that Loire Valley is filled with vineyards, sunflower fields, stone villages, rivers, streams, and many other sights that will make your hot air balloon adventure extra special. Considering all of the beautiful sights there are to see in this area, it is highly recommended that you strongly consider traveling there for your hot ballooning adventure.
Look up any list of top travel destinations in the world and chances are the miniscule south-eastern European country will be right up there with the very best of them. Some will perhaps remember the name Serbia and Montenegro. Our Montenegro was one of the better halves but divorced from Serbia in 2006, and the pair decided it was in their best interests if they saw out the rest of their lives single.
This post is part of our Adventure travel series by Jane Freeman
Whether you have just taken up rock climbing or you have years of experience, it is important that you have as much information as possible about each of the locations you are thinking about climbing at. There are many different places around the world that offer amazing scenery and challenges for climbers, so you will definitely want to take at this list before deciding where to go. Depending on the amount of climbing experience you have, you will want to pick the location you visit very carefully. Here are some of the best climbing destinations in the world along with options for guided climbing holidays.
Imagine being on holiday in a remote location, only to find yourself separated from your group and stranded in the wilderness. What would you do? In the event of some man-made or natural disaster, would you be able to survive for any length of time on your own? These kinds of scenarios are the basis for wilderness training courses held all over the world. Course providers are teaching students how to survive under some of the most extreme conditions.
Egypt has been a destination of choice for European travellers since the 1920’s when the Cairo was a sophisticated city, attracting luminaries such as Agatha Christie. Since the 20’s, Egypt has caught the imagination of travellers as it offers a unique holiday at very reasonable cost.
Hit the Beach
As Sharm El Sheikh is situated at the edge of a desert, the choice and quality of the beaches are five star. Most resorts such offer private beaches that are developed for the discerning tourist. There are umbrellas to provide enough shade for anyone that wants it. Sun loungers are also plentiful, no squabbling about bagging a lounger in Sharm’s five star resorts, it’s all taken care of and there’s no need to place a towel on the sunbed either!
The Red Sea is a draw for professional divers from around the world. Water temperature rarely changes from a balmy 25 degrees and that is good news for fish lovers. The sheer scale of fish is incredible. Napoleon Fish, Parrot fish and even Crocodile fish are found in these waters in huge numbers. If diving seems too adventurous, take a paddle at the shore. If the beach has a reef close to the shore, then it is quite easy to spot these tropical fish as they have no problem with coming to the shore. Water clarity ensures that even a glass bottom boat trip becomes an extraordinary experience. Children love this excursion, in particular, as it gives them a chance to see some truly magnificent coral reefs with all of their inhabitants.
Lawrence of Arabia
If you can picture yourself trotting through the desert like a modern day Lawrence of Arabia, then a trip to Egypt can certainly provide the opportunity. There are many different trips available but the desert camel ride is usually a popular choice. There is a certain romanticism about crossing a small part of the desert by camel and often the trip includes interactions with native Bedouin tribes. Kids are happy to participate and are usually encouraged to make bread around a camp fire.
If astronomy is simply not your cup of tea, then it is time to think again. Light pollution is not a problem in the desert. and a star gazing trip is a very entertaining way to spend an evening. Obvious advantages include no heat from the desert sun, making it a great trip for children. The stars are brilliant, using powerful telescopes it is possible to see the moon in close up, Sirius is a mere arms length away and the whole experience is something memorable to take home with you.
A lot of people associate holidays with a beach and very little else. Of course this type of holiday is perfect if you want to chill out, relax and do very little for a week or two, but if you want to explore the local scenery, step off the beaten track, and generally discover places other tourists are too lazy to see, booking a 4X4 tour could be a fantastic way of seeing just a bit more than you usually would.
What is a 4×4 Adventure Tour?
A 4×4 tour is basically a sightseeing tour, but unlike a coach tour where you spend hours on a bus, traversing main roads between various points of interest, a 4×4 adventure tour will take you off into the wilderness and show you places most visitors never experience.
What Kind Of Places Will I See On A 4×4 Adventure Tour?
A 4×4 vehicle can cope with all kinds of different terrains, which is why many 4×4 adventure tours operate in the most remote parts of the world. Basically if a 4×4 vehicle can drive through it or over it, you will be able to go there, so with the exception of dense jungle and steep mountains there are very few places that a 4×4 adventure tour won’t go.
Here are some of the best places in to the world to experience off road driving at its best.
A 4×4 vehicle is essential if you want to leave the crowded souks of Marrakech behind and head out into the arid desert. There are some fabulous landscapes to discover in North Africa: from the sand dunes of the Sahara to the dizzying heights of the Atlas Mountains, a 4×4 adventure will give you an unforgettable holiday experience and a chance to see amazing landscapes.
Imagine driving into deepest and darkest Peru under the watchful eye of your 4×4 tour operator, or exploring the beauty of Nicaragua from the backseat of a luxury 4×4 all terrain vehicle. South America also offers jungle road driving in brazil and desert drives throughout the southern Patagonia region Argentina.
4×4 adventure tours are popular in far flung places such as Cambodia or Thailand where the roads are rough and the scenery is exquisitely beautiful. You can spend a week soaking up the sun on a white beach, followed by a few days exploring some of the remotest parts of the world in a 4×4. Many experiences will allow you to visit remote hill tribes who you can stay with a couple of days.
Australia is a large continent, with some amazing driving experiences. It would be impossible to explore parts of this vast country without the aid of a 4×4 vehicle, which is why 4×4 adventure tours are very popular in the more remote parts of the outback. So instead of limiting your visit to Sydney and Surfer’s Paradise, head out into the Outback and experience some of Australia’s natural beauty.
Europe is at the heart of modern skiing, so it is no surprise that some of the best ski resorts in the world are found here. What many don’t realise is just how many European countries offer great skiing facilities, and that the best ski resorts are no longer confined to Austria, France and Switzerland. This guide will help you make an informed choice as to where to spend your next ski break by giving you a taster of the best ski resorts in Europe.
Due to the volume of top class ski resorts, we have to start with France. It’s close proximity to England would seemingly make it an automatic choice, but you often will have to fly to Switzerland as many resorts in the Alps are a lot easier, and quicker, to reach this way, rather than flying to France. Some of the best resorts in Europe can be found here, and there are many to choose from.
The twin resorts of Val d’Isere and Tignes share the area known as L’Espace Killy that boasts over 300km, or 190 miles of slopes, as well as 115 bars, 150 shops and numerous ski schools. With over 1500 staff employed in this area, and extensive off piste activities, these resorts are amongst the best you will find.
The Three Valleys, or Trois Vallees, is an extensive skiing area that encompasses some of the most luxurious resorts such as Courcheval, Meribel, Val Thorens and La Tania. There is little to choose between these resorts in terms of quality and ski runs, although Courcheval tends to be favoured by the experienced skier thanks to its steep chutes and cliff drops.
The charming and traditional town of Chamonix is situated right at the foot of Mont Blanc, and offers great skiing for all levels. With great après ski and much to entertain visitors of all ages, it has become increasingly popular as a family ski resort. Les Arcs boasts the Arc 2000, a 2000ft glacier that attracts the serious skier, whilst La Plagne is an area made up of 10 villages which all have their own unique charm.
The top ski resorts in Austria are also some of the worlds most famous; Ischgl, , St Anton am Arlberg and Zell am See. The stunning backdrop and range of pistes to suit all abilities makes these 4 resorts incredibly popular with all skiers, and with the picturesque chalets, shopping and après ski opportunities, it is easy to see why Austria is still a favourite destination in the ski world.
You think of skiing, you think of Switzerland, and whilst it may have faded somewhat with the upsurge of other countries, it is still a firm favourite with many and still hosts some of the major skiing championships. Zermatt, Verbier, St Moritz, Davos and Klosters and Andermatt are all top class resorts boasting chic designer boutiques, cosy bars and restaurants and a not too shabby chance of star, or even Royal, spotting.
The tiny principality nestling in the Pyrenees that is Andorra boasts three top class resorts that are as good as you will find anywhere. Soldeu El Tarter is a fun and relaxed resort very popular with the British, whilst the purpose built resort of Pas de la Casa boasts the longest run in Andorra. Arinsal and Pal are both perfect for the novice skier and perfect for those who take ski breaks with the emphasis being on fun.
Bulgaria is a recent addition to the European family of skiing, and whilst their cuisine will not appeal to gastronomes, the cheerful resorts of Bansko, Borovets and Pamporova have already built up a healthy following. The snow is of excellent quality and as it isn’t too busy, is perfect for beginners and improvers. There are also some excellent wines to relax with in the evening.
The German resort of Garmische thoroughly deserves its place on this list, and whilst it isn’t a year round ski resort, it has nevertheless over the years grown into a premier European resort. The pistes tend to be quiet during the week, but both the pistes, and the villages, come to life at the weekend. For a quieter break with plenty to do off piste, Garmisch is hard to beat.
There are two resorts in Italy that have made it onto our list; Cortina d’Ampezzo and Val Gardena. The Italians love their skiing almost as much as they love the sunshine, and these resorts are a perfect combination of both. Cortina is incredibly upmarket and the place where affluent Italians head for a weekend, whilst Val Gardena is more down to earth, though no less stunning.
Scandinavia would seem to have the perfect climate for skiing, but the lack of major mountains has limited them when it comes to top ski resorts. Narvik is the exception in Norway, an unexceptional town at first glance but full of satisfying slopes for the beginner or improver. Sweden has two major resorts; Are and Riksgransen. The former offers great skiing for families, while the latter is famed for its cross country routes.