The best destinations on the planet for adventure tourism

These days thrill-seekers are spoilt for choice when it comes to adventure vacation ideas, but so are outdoor travel enthusiasts looking for new challenges. More accessible than ever, adventure getaways are no longer limited to the most daring or athletic. Whether it’s a mountain trek in Portugal, a safari in Tanzania, or a snowmobile tour in Iceland, active and adventurous travel has become one of the most popular ways to experience different places. And with plenty of vacation homes ready to provide the perfect base for your overseas adventure, planning an unforgettable trip is easier than ever.

Thrilling Costa Rica adventure vacations

Costa Rica is a dream destination for lovers of adventure travel. Home to an amazing array of secret waterfalls and beaches, tropical cloud forests and rainforests, as well as mammoth volcanoes and rare wildlife, it’s one of the top adventure and ecotourism destinations around. No trip to the country could possibly be complete without a zip line experience above lush jungle canopies, but if you’re after a calmer, family-friendly adventure, you can always try one of Costa Rica’s many turtle conservation experiences. After you’re finished soaring through the the treetops of Monteverde or learning about sea turtle nesting sites along the Osa Peninsula, you can relax in the pool or outdoor lounging areas of your getaway rental.

Awe-inspiring Iceland trips

There’s no denying that Iceland is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. From exciting dips in the gurgling hot springs of the Reykjadalur Valley to snowmobile tours of Snæfellsjökull—the glacier-capped stratovolcano that inspired Jules Verne’s famous novel "Journey to the Center of the Earth"—the country is bursting with travel adventures for every interest and skill level. Start your trip right by booking a trendy apartment rental in Reykjavik or a secluded getaway cabin in Thingvellir National Park or along the Golden Circle route. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the mysterious Aurora Borealis, otherwise known as the Northern Lights.

European adventures in Portugal

Portugal has it all: historical cities, diverse landscapes, incredible food, and some of the best urban beaches in the world. Its vast array of natural wonders is one of the reasons it’s one of the best places to visit for an action-packed European adventure. Whether surfing in Sagres takes your fancy or you’d prefer bungee jumping in Albufeira, the adventure travel options in Portugal are almost limitless. And the fun isn’t just limited to the mainland. The island of Madeira has fast become one of the best hiking destinations around, and offers everything from advanced, jaw-dropping summits to simple but charming walks like the Vereda do Jardim do Mar route. No matter where you choose to go, there are plenty of vacation home rentals to suit solo travelers, couples, and families.

Wildlife wonders in Tanzania

Standing 19,341 ft tall, the colossal Mount Kilimanjaro is just one of the reasons Tanzania should be on every adrenaline junkie's overseas adventure travel list. The East African country has an incredible array of national parks, islands, and archeological sites to inspire the imagination of any traveler. Safaris are particularly popular, with places like the Serengeti National Park, a popular UNESCO World Heritage Site, hosting a massive annual migration of 2 million animals, including lions, giraffes, gazelles, and zebras. Whether you’re keen to visit a sustainable game reserve and encounter a diverse selection of wildlife, or you’d be more interested in snorkeling the azure waters off Mnemba Island, you simply can’t go wrong with a Tanzania trip.

Adventure tourism in India

India might not be the first place that comes to mind when thinking about adventure tourism, but it should well be. Mountainous regions like Kerala, Jammu, Himachal Pradesh, and Ladakh offer all sorts of outdoor adventures, including heart-racing mountain bike tours, incredible paragliding experiences, and guided treks to see elusive snow leopards. If you’re really up for something extreme, you can participate in a rickshaw challenge, which involves rolling across India on a 3-wheeled adventure that will have you experiencing the country via its most common mode of transport. After your hair-raising activities are over, settle in for a calming stay in one of India’s many vacation rentals.