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8 Reasons to Love Adventure Travel

From foodie tours to authentic experiences, there’s a lot to love about adventure travel 

Does your bucket list include travel? Chances are, there’s an adventure travel experience on your list. From Italian cooking classes in a chef’s home to guided walks through the bustling markets of Morocco, we’re all dreaming of traveling and experiencing new places and cultures.  

Adventure travel tours highlight hands-on cultural experiences and learning from local hosts and guides. Tours are an authentic way to live like a local, actively engage with the communities you visit and get off the beaten path.  

Whether you’re dreaming of a Vietnam foodie adventure or camping on safari in Botswana, here are eight reasons to love adventure travel.  

1. Adventure travel is for everyone. 

Where will your next adventure take you? Photo: AdobeStock

Think adventure travel is only for athletes? Think again! Adventure travel is for everyone. People of all fitness levels, as well as families with kids, will find a multitude of options. Each tour is designed with an activity level in mind. Club Adventures, for example, has an activity range from 1 to 5 that indicates the kind of physical movement you can expect during each of their tours. For example, the Premium Iceland adventure is an activity level 2. At this level, you can look forward to some light walking as you explore Iceland’s largest waterfall, the famous Blue Lagoon, and drive through fields of lava. (See below for details about the different activity levels.) 

2. Group tours are a great option for solo travelers.

Stunning Godafoss-Waterfall in Iceland is a bucket list destination for adventure travelers.
Stunning Godafoss-Waterfall in Iceland is a bucket list destination for adventure travelers. Photo: Chan Srithaweeporn/Getty Images/Club Adventures

With groups averaging about 10 people, group tours by organizations such as Club Adventures are a great option for solo travelers. You’ll be part of a micro-community of adventurers who share a passion for the destination and trying new things. You’ll also have the reassurance of traveling together as a group with the advice of your hosts and local guides. Plus, Club Adventures can match you with a roommate (if you’re not sleeping in a tent or under the stars).

3. There’s an abundance of experiences across North America.

Adventure travel closer to home and explore destinations such as Folly Beach, South Carolina
Travel closer to home and explore destinations such as Folly Beach, South Carolina: Photo: Riddhish Chakraborty/Getty Images/Club Adventures

In addition to tours in far-flung places around the world, there are tours in every corner of the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Imagine exploring the “iceberg capital of the world” in Newfoundland, traveling across Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula and visiting Chichen Itza, or experiencing Gullah Geechee culture on a journey from Charleston to Savannah. No matter where you point your compass, you’ll find an adventure travel experience.

4. Most adventure travel experiences include equipment and more.

Think of adventure travel tours as your outfitter and host. Most group tours include accommodation (everything from inns to resorts to secret hideaways), plus local guides, bicycles and other equipment. Some tours, especially those in remote locations, include delicious meals prepared fresh on-site. Depending on where you’re adventuring, trains, ferries and other forms of local transport may also be included.

Travel Tip: Keep in mind that airfare is not usually included in tours but can be purchased as an add-on. Your travel agent will find and confirm the best flights for your itinerary.

5. Group adventure travel makes planning a breeze.

Adventure travel tours help you discover hidden gems at every destination.
Tours help you discover hidden gems at every destination. Photo: Linka A. Odom/Getty Images/Club Adventures

Choosing a small group tour takes the complexity out of planning adventure travel. Thanks to their years of experience and local knowledge, tour planners create itineraries that include all the highlights, and many hidden gems, of your destination.

6. You can travel on a set budget.

Adventure travel opportunities come in all shapes and sizes—and budgets. Seven-day group tours range from less than $1,500 to upwards of $5,000 per person. The cost depends on your choice of destination and the activities. You might be surprised to learn that many destinations in the lower price range include destinations from Brazil to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Travel Tip: There are plenty of discounted trips and last-minute deals. Be sure to tell your travel agent if you have any flexibility on your travel dates or your destination (or both). Travel agents are the first to learn about new discounts and can alert you when there’s a sale.

7. Adventure travel supports local businesses, producers and artists.

Adventure travel connects you with local artists and makers throughout your tour.
Adventure travel connects you with local artists and makers throughout your tour. Photo: Getty Images/Club Adventures

If you’re interested in supporting local businesses, as well as producers and artists, adventure travel is a great option. Itineraries often emphasize connecting with small businesses, shopping local, eating at family-owned restaurants and meeting people who call the community home. Your local guide will have the inside scoop on specific ways to support locally-owned businesses.

8. Adventure travel is perfect for milestone celebrations.

Big birthday coming up? Celebrate with an adventure travel tour in Mexico.
Big birthday coming up? Celebrate with an adventure travel tour. Photo: Thomas Barwick/Getty Images/Club Adventures

Planning a trip to celebrate a big birthday or other milestone event? Adventure travel tours are a perfect fit. Picture yourself sailing around the Galapagos Islands, strolling through a French vineyard or searching for the mountain gorillas of Uganda. Whichever adventure you choose, it’s an authentic experience you will treasure forever. 

If you’re interested in exploring the options for adventure travel, check out Club Adventures by AAA, which offers experiences in every corner of the world. Reach out to a AAA travel agent to find the ideal adventure to check off your bucket list.

Travel Tip: Ask your travel agent about the activity level. For example, each Club Adventures tour has an activity level (ranging from 1 to 5) that sets expectations for the kind of physical movement you can expect during the trip.  

  1. Look forward to relaxation and light, non-strenuous movement and activities—great for all fitness levels. 
  1. Expect some light walking, uneven terrain and stairs—suitable for all fitness levels. 
  1. Anticipate moderate activities such as hiking, biking and climbing stairs—a good fit for those who also enjoy walking tours. 
  1. Prepare for active adventure—think strenuous activities such as trekking or high-altitude hikes. 
  1. Get your adrenaline pumping with heavy exercise, high altitudes, extensive treks or other intense activities.

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Travel Planning Tips

Get expert advice: Your perfect getaway awaits. No matter what destination you choose, or how you wish to travel, AAA Travel experts can help you plan a perfect experience that you will remember for years to come.

Purchase travel insurance: Protect your trip investment with travel insurance.

Consider Concierge: AAA’s Concierge Vacations feature done-for-you details and special amenities for travel to world-wide destinations. AAA Travel Agents will make your planning a breeze and your vacation unforgettable.

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—Written by AAA Washington staff.  

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