Most of the tailor made itineraries we create for our clients include an element of adventure. From gorilla trekking in Rwanda's dense jungles to bamboo rafting in Chiang Dao in northern Thailand, there's an adventure holiday for everyone.
For those who are seeking the best adventure holidays in the world, we have a selection of exciting ideas to inspire you. Whether you want to hike through the Tonkinese Alps in Sapa in northern Vietnam or conquer Mount Kilimanjaro – we can create an adventure holiday based on your specific interests.
Here are our five adventure holiday ideas:
1. Explore the remote region of Northwestern Vietnam
The remote region of northwest Vietnam offers some of the most spectacular landscapes in the country, such as misty mountains and beautiful bright green terraced rice fields. Adventurous travellers who get off the beaten track are rewarded with breathtaking scenery and an insight into traditional hill tribe life.
Our Northwest Vietnam tailor made holiday is a cultural adventure which starts in Hanoi before heading north to the rural Mau Chau district - a series of villages set among rice fields in a valley surrounded by lush mountains. We spend the night here and have plenty of time to explore the villages, either by bicycle or on foot, and there are opportunities to buy authentic handmade products from the stalls set up outside people’s homes.
From here we travel to Dien Bien Phu. Situated in the Muong Thanh valley deep in the highlands of northwest Vietnam and just 30kms from the Laos border, the remote town of Dien Bien Phu is famous for the climactic confrontation on 7 May 1954 that ended France’s reign in Indochina.
From Dien Bien Phu we travel via Lai Chau to Sapa, enjoying the incredible panoramic views on the way. During this scenic journey we drive over the top of the Tram Ton Pass, which at 1900m is the highest road pass in Vietnam.
We spend a couple of days in Sapa where you’ll have a chance to hike in the stunning Tonkinese Alps (Hoang Lien Mountains). Depending on your level of fitness we can arrange easy one day hikes or slightly more strenuous over night treks where you can stay in local a homestay. Whilst hiking in this region you’ll have the opportunity to visit local villages and gain an insight into the lives of Sapa’s remote ethnic groups. From Sapa we take the scenic route to Bac Ha and then on to Lao Cai where we catch our overnight train back to Hanoi.
Read our comprehensive Vietnam travel guide for further information.
2. Climb Mount Kilimanjaro
Climbing Mt Kilimanjaro is an adventure of a lifetime. It is undoubtedly a huge challenge which requires strength, stamina, and serious determination. However, upon reaching the snow capped Uhuru Peak you’ll be rewarded with awe inspiring views and an overwhelming sense of achievement. Watching the sunrise from The Roof of Africa is a moment that you will remember for the rest of your life.
The trek begins on the lower slopes of the mountain and follows a wilderness trail passing through pristine and remote rainforest up to the Shira Plateau. We then cross the wild heath and moorlands of the Shira Plateau, before heading to Lava Tower at 4630m.
From Lava Tower we make our way down into Barranco Valley. The following day starts with a short steep ascent of the daunting Barranco Wall, and then we make a gentle descent into the Karanga Valley followed by a short ascent to our campsite at 4035m. The next morning we set off towards the final camp, and very early the next morning we start our ascent by torchlight to climb to Stella Point at 5685m to see the sun rise from the greatest vantage point in Africa. Those who are still feeling strong enough can then walk around the crater rim to Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa at 5895m.
If you want to physically and mentally challenge yourself, conquering Mt Kilimanjaro could be the ultimate adventure for you.
3. Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda
Gorilla trekking in Rwanda is the ultimate African adventure. Also known as The Land of a Thousand Hills, gorilla trekking is the country's biggest tourism activity as it's home to more than half of all mountain gorillas!
As there are age restrictions for gorilla trekking tours (minimum age of 15) this experience is more suited for families with older children or as an active holiday for couples.
Our Gorillas, Masai Mara & Zanzibar holiday starts in Kigali and from here we venture out to Kinigi at the foothills of the Virungas in Volcanoes National Park (Parc National des Volcans) where we begin our trek in search of endangered mountain gorillas.
Your professional guide and tracker will lead you into the forest’s paths, looking for a gorilla family. When you finally meet the gorillas you’ll have the chance to spend between 40 minutes to one hour quietly observing them. You don’t have to be super-fit for a gorilla trek but it does help if you have a reasonable level of fitness, if only to enhance your overall enjoyment of the experience. The altitude is over 2,500m and the hike can be steep in parts, but it’s definitely worth the effort to spend time with gorillas in the wild.
Find all you need to know about gorilla trekking in Rwanda here.
4. Southern Thailand Adventure
Southern Thailand is a tropical paradise with towering limestone cliffs sheltering gorgeous white sandy beaches. On our Elephants & Islands tailor made holiday we visit the Khao Sok National Park, Phuket and the idyllic Phi Phi Island. This popular holiday offers the opportunity for rock climbing, bamboo rafting, kayaking, diving, snorkelling, jungle trekking or simply relaxing on the beach.
Khao Sok National Park is characterised by limestone mountains (known as karsts), caves, lakes, waterfalls and dense rainforest. Adventure enthusiasts can choose from a range of exciting activities including - kayaking down the Khao Sok River, trekking through the jungle, exploring remote waterfalls and secret caves and visiting Nam Ron Hot Springs. Our preferred accommodation is Elephant Hills which is situated right on the border of the rainforest of Khao Sok National Park and has 35 luxurious tents. This unique camp offers guest a chance to participate in an Elephant Experience where you can wash, feed and interact with these magnificent creatures.
From Phuket we take a boat to Phi Phi Island which was used as the setting for the film The Beach. During your time here we recommend that you hike up to the Viewpoint for a spectacular panoramic view of Phi Phi Le and Phi Phi Don, enjoy a sunset kayaking trip to Wang Long Bay and snorkel in Maya Bay. For the more adventurous, you can swim with black-tip reef sharks or try rock-climbing for the very best views of Phi Phi Island.
5. Remote Safari Experience in Tanzania
Secluded and off the beaten track, with an abundance of wildlife and stunning scenery, the Selous Game Reserve offers an authentic and adventurous African wilderness experience.
Selous is dominated by the Rufiji River which runs through vast areas of the reserve and sprawls out to endless lakes and deltas which fill and empty with the seasonal rains. The rivers and lakes of Selous host some incredible game, including the largest crocodile and hippo populations in Africa, and along the banks of the Ruiji River you’ll find large herds of elephants, especially in the dry season (June to November). The reserve also boasts good numbers of buffalo, giraffe, zebra, impala, eland, wildebeest, baboon, hyena, lion and leopard, plus over 50% of the remaining endangered African wild dog.
One of the great advantages of the Selous being a game reserve is that your guide can go off road in your safari vehicle which means you can get much closer to wildlife than you can in National Parks where you are restricted to the roads. Another advantage is the range of activities available, including walking safaris (accompanied by a skilled ranger) and river safaris (using a motorboat). The walking and boating options in Selous are perfect for those who are interested in a more adventurous African safari experience.
Our Tanzania safari & beach itinerary, offers the best adventure holidays for couples as it incorporates both an exhilirating safari experience with time to unwind in one of Africa's most pristine beaches.