Adventure tourism is now one of the fastest growing trends in travel business. It started with Leo Le Bon who co-founded the world’s first adventure travel company—Mountain Tours with other eight travel mates. Le Bon and others made the first commercial journey to the Annapurna region of Nepal. Since then, the travel business grew rapidly resulting to a plethora of travel companies that offer adventure vacations.
Classifying an adventure travel however pose a little difficulty in defining what exactly it means. Adventure travel depends on the level of strenuousness of activities involved. Adventure may involve leisure biking and hiking for some travelers or it may entail base jumping into an underground cave in Mexico.
Nevertheless, a travel involves some fundamental aspects to be classified as adventure. Adventure travel typically includes going to far-flung areas, intermingling with various cultures, and doing a physical activity.
Two categories of adventure travel are hard and soft adventures. Hard adventures fall under extreme and mostly dangerous sporting activity. Examples of hard adventures are rock climbing, surfing, paragliding, and scuba diving in remote locations. Soft adventures, on the other hand, are leisure activities that are often educational. It does not involve strenuous activity unlike hard adventures. Bird watching, religious pilgrimages and architectural tours fall under soft adventures.
But you might wonder who usually embark on an adventure travel? Travel Industry Association of America’s (TIA) study indicated an estimated 20 percent of adult travelers are adventure tourists. It is also parallel to The Wall Street Journal reporting in 2003 that revenues from adventure tourism has skyrocketed topping the adventure market with $245 million dollars.
While many studies say college-educated males in their 20s typically embark on hard adventures, it is harder to categorize people who go for soft adventures. They say baby boomers and seniors significantly affect the rise of number of soft travelers. However, adventure-seeking women have also substantially caused the continuous growing of the industry. For example, divorcees ages 40 and 60 usually turn to adventure travel as a shift into new lives.
In addition, adventure travels are physically and psychologically beneficial both men and women. Physical challenges like mountain climbing require both physical fitness and focus. It develops muscles as well as serves as an excellent mental workout. Achieving difficult tasks also help build self-esteem especially for people in midlife crisis.
There are several options to what kind of adventure travel fits a specific type of person. But you should determine first how adventurous you would like to be. A travel agency may actually help steer you through the multitude choices that you will face.
Sports-themed vacations are well-liked for athletes. Examples of these are baseball fantasy camps and NASCAR driving schools. Safari is one example of soft adventures popular to many of varying ages. This may involve driving and walking through the African plains and come into close contact with lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo.
Longtime popular destinations are the Seven Wonders of World that include biking and hiking to these locales. Some of the world wonders include pyramids of Egypt, expedition to Antarctica, cultural tour in Japan and Ethiopia, the Great Wall of China, and Taj Mahal in India.
If you opt to have an adventure travel however, be sure to be safe as much as possible. Take note that adventure travel has inherent danger involved.