Who wants to go on an adventure? Does your family see holiday time as the chance to go exploring, try something new and do anything other than sitting by an overcrowded pool for a week?
If that’s the case in your house, you’ll be looking for places to go that can guarantee excitement and the chance to do something new.
So where in the world can the whole family grab a sense of adventure? Here are some of my picks you have to check out.
Adventure Spot 1: Iceland
A traveller’s motto to know; “Iceland is green. Greenland is ice”. If you’re like me and keep tabs on cheap long haul flights, you may have noticed a surge in companies that use Iceland as a layover spot to refuel. It’s not a destination to pass on tough, especially for families looking for adventure.
A flight from Heathrow to Reykjavik takes just three hours to give you an idea of how close it is. Families can go hiking, see geysers and waterfalls, visit hot springs and see the black sands of the beaches on a whirlwind week trip. Companies like Intrepid Travel offer tours that take you around the entire country to visit attractions like these and the country’s best national parks.
If you’re an outdoors family, this is something special. Just remember that dining out in Iceland can be very expensive. As the best indicator (for some) as to how dear it can be, a Big Mac is just under £7.
Adventure Spot 2: Sardinia
Fancy a mixture of lounging by the pool or tanning on the beach with scuba diving, mountain biking and tennis in the daily diary?
Sardinia can tick all those boxes, especially for families who want to try something new on holiday. The island is surprisingly big (it’s the second biggest in the Mediterranean after Sicily) and has a fair few hotels that specialise in providing sun soaked activities.
Mark Warner is one of the UK’s hidden gems when it comes to finding activity holidays. They provide direct flights and resort transfers from several UK airports. In the case of Sardinia, you can stay at a beach resort with its own private beach area to learn how to sail, windsurf and kayak; perfect for families who love being out in the water every opportunity they get.
Adventure Spot 3: New Orleans
Not all adventures need to see you working up a sweat, even when the Louisiana travel hub is humid throughout much of the year. New Orleans has upped its tourist ambitions in the last decade since the city has recovered from Hurricane Katrina. If you’ve seen the movie Chef, you’ll know that the city is a secret food haven (it’s the only place to try beignets) and good holiday spot for kids, especially culture vulture and families with teenagers who want to see everything from voodoo museums to above-ground cemeteries.
And speaking of vultures, families can float around the famous Louisiana swamps on an airboat that will see you flying through the water in search of gators and other swamp creatures. Most swamp tours are about 45 minutes away from the city and provide direct shuttle buses from hotels in town to get you straight out to the swamp. Companies like Louisiana Tour Company have the widest selection of tours, including a seaplane tour if you can stomach it, while New Orleans Airboats and Airboat Tours by Arthur are highly rated on Google.
Adventure Spot 4: Las Vegas
Staying stateside, and again if you’re holidaying with teens, Las Vegas is pretty much the perfect adventure spot. It used to be that there were only a few hotels suited to families and while Circus Circus, Treasure Island and Excalibur had very “kid-centric” entertainment, the city is hidden with ways for families to embrace adventure.
A family can grab their proton packs to be a Ghostbuster or become a Stormtrooper when visiting The Void at Grand Canal Shoppes. Wearing a VR suit you’ll think you’re blasting ghosts on the top of a skyscraper or jumping out or spaceships (you can see a video from YouTube here).
Keeping things in the real world, the Stratosphere Hotel at the north end of the Las Vegas Strip has a mini theme park on top of its 109 storey building that includes a bungee jump off the building, mechanical arms that spin you out over the edge (866ft. high) and a catapult rollercoaster that leans you over the edge with nothing below. There’s also the famous rollercoaster at New York New York at the bottom of the strip, but you can’t get as adventurous as dangling over a giant building.
Need more holiday help?
Still don’t know what to be doing with yourself this year on holiday?