Sunday, January 29, 2012

Feel Vietnam

                                                  Feel Vietnam

Welcome to a world where the colors are more vivid, where the landscapes are bolder, the coastline more dramatic, where the history is more compelling, where the tastes are more divine, where life is lived in the fast lane. This world is Vietnam, the latest Asian dragon to awake from its slumber. Vietnam is a paradise for both the outdoor adventurer and city explorer alike. Winding down 3,444 kilometers of coastline from the northern Red River Delta near the Chinese border to the Mekong Delta at the southernmost tip of the Southeast Asian peninsula, Vietnam is a splendid blend of picturesque coastline and lush inland terrain.
Nature has blessed Vietnam with a bountiful harvest of soaring mountains, a killer coastline and radiant rice fields, Vietnam is a cracker. Inland, peasant women in conical hats still tend to their fields, children ride buffalos along country paths and minority people scratch out a living from impossible gradientsDon’t believe the hype. Or the propagandist party billboards that are as common as statues of ‘Uncle Ho’. Believe your senses, as you discover one of the most enriching, enlivening and exotic countries on earth.
Ho Chi Minh City
Visit the economic capital of Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) in the south to witness the vibrant and progressive culture that has taken root in Vietnam.
While there, explore the extensive botanical gardens, Buddhist monasteries, and stop by the Binh Soup Shop, which was the secret Viet Cong headquarters in Saigon during the Vietnam War.


In the far north, the capital city of Hanoi is a bit more relaxed; speaking to ancient Vietnamese culture and 1000 years of history along the streets of the Old Quarter.
Visit the intriguing One Pillar Pagoda built by Emperor Tong in the 11th century and replenish your spirits in the Bach Ma Temple, the city's oldest and most revered.

Ba Be National Park

Retreat to the captivating beauty of Vietnam's wilderness for a more tranquil portion of your journey. Tropical rainforests abound in the protected area of Ba Be National Park, located close to the Chinese border in the north.
The local Tay people live in stilt houses and contribute cultural significance to the area.
Take an elephant ride through the expansive Yok Don National Park for a chance to see monkeys, birds and even leopards.
If confined spaces don't trigger nightmares, the Phong Nha Cave is a must see. This UNESCO World Heritage Site was created 250 million years ago and boasts a cavernous entanglement stretching thousands of meters below ground. Portions of this natural wonder are open to the public daily.
For the claustrophobic, travel to Halong Bay in the Gulf of Tonkin, another World Heritage Site, which is dotted with more than 3,000 tiny islands with cliffs and white sand beaches that cascade into the surrounding sparkling waters.
Due to the country's broad north-south range, Vietnam is a wonderful country to explore any time of year. The sheltered forests and increased speed of the coastal cities offer an invaluable variety for a perfectly balanced journey.
Travel to Vietnam to discover this underestimated Southeast Asian gem.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

                                  A Guide to British Columbia Canada
Victoria, the capital city of British Columbia ,Canada oozes charm amidst beautiful surroundings. Feeling more like a friendly town than a vibrant city it offers something for everyone.It has gained a reputation for its 'British' character due to its colonial history and still has a touch of quaintness usually lost in larger cities.Greater Victoria includes a busy downtown, small oceanside communities and quiet country areas all in a compact peninsula at the south-eastern end of Vancouver Island. Plan to stay a few days to enjoy its many attractions and activities while relaxing in its peaceful beauty. There are many bed and breakfast accommodations throughout the whole area.

Victoria in British Columbia, 'The Garden City', has a moderate Mediterranean-like climate welcoming visitors year-round who arrive at Victoria International Airport or on ferry services from Vancouver BC or from Seattle and other Washington State centres. Immediately the relaxed atmosphere of this lovely place become apparent and you can begin to relax.In downtown Victoria, walk through heritage architecture set around the picturesque Inner Harbour with pleasure craft and float planes creating a hum of activities.You could take a harbour ferry; small tugboat-shaped passenger ferries which weave their way across the Inner Harbour providing a different perspective of downtown Victoria.Have a horse-drawn carriage ride and tour the Parliament Buildings.Allow half a day for the Royal British Columbia Museum, one of the best in Canada, for its extensive displays of local and native history and its IMAX theatre.
Savour traditional afternoon tea in many settings: in elegant grandeur, in outdoor gardens or cosy little tearooms. Victoria has the second highest number of restaurants per capita in North America so your choice for dining is very broad, from ethnic cuisine to fish and chips.Walk north along Government Street through downtown shopping for interesting shops tucked in the side-streets and select a gift or two.You will reach Chinatown which was once one of the largest on the continent.Enjoy 'window shopping' or pick up a treasure by walking east along Antique Row (Fort Street) which extends to elegant Craigdarroch Castle, a family mansion of the 1890's.
Set on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, Victoria offers a wide variety of marine recreation.Whale-watching tours offer spectacular viewing of killer whales (orcas) in their natural setting.These tours are carefully environmentally friendly and provide a wealth of information on the many other marine animals you may see.Alternatively, there's fishing, sailing and kayaking - idyllic ways to enjoy the natural scenery.Activities on land include year-round golf on fifteen courses, horseback riding, strolling along ocean beaches or just sunbathing at a quiet lake.Hiking options vary from casual walks (like at Goldstream Park along a stream where salmon spawn in an old-growth forest) to serious hiking on the many trails in the parks and hills (such as the Juan de Fuca Trail on the west coast).Bike trails on the peninsula extending to Sooke offer scenic cycling on the Galloping Goose Trail and the Lochside Trail.

The Butchart Gardens, Victoria, BC
The deservedly famous Butchart Gardens on the Saanich Peninsula are just north of Victoria with 50 acres of display gardens which are beautiful at any time of year and illuminated in the summer and at Christmas.In the peninsula's lovely countryside consider visiting farm fruit stands and tour wineries where you can sample and buy British Columbia estate wines. Other attractions here include the Butterfly Gardens (50 species), Glendale Gardens, the Centre of the Universe (the interpretative centre at the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory) and Saanich Commonwealth Place with its full-size pool, wave pool, sauna, steam room and extensively equipped gym.A pleasant way to drive to the rural parts of the peninsular from downtown is to go through Oak Bay to Cordova Bay via Mount Douglas Park which has good views of Victoria, the Olympic Peninsula and the Gulf Islands across to mainland BC.
Further north, near the airport and BC Ferries terminal, lies the retiring town of Sidney renowned for its many bookshops and pleasant marina area where you can take a short ferry hop to the island of Sidney Spit for a picnic.Sooke is just 40 minutes west of Victoria with glorious beaches, parks and marine recreation in a quiet semi-rural setting. En route visit Hatley Castle which was built by the same family as Craigdarroch Castle and enjoy the wonderful gardens.Then make a short detour to Fisgard Lighthouse, a classic old lighthouse, which now contains exhibits of the many past wrecks along this coast.Driving west you pass through Metchosin and shortly arrive at two British Columbia provincial parks which both have good trails: Sooke Potholes (a popular swimming spot) and East Sooke Provincial Park. Past the small town of Sooke this west coast road leads to solitude on the way to Port Renfrew, passing French Beach, China Beach and the Juan de Fuca Trail.
The charm of Greater Victoria extends to its many B&Bs: Victoria bed and breakfasts include accommodations at downtown heritage homes, oceanfront guest houses, contemporary homes, country manor houses and elegant inns. All include a full breakfast. Their hosts will be delighted to share local secrets and be your travel guide to help you make the most of your visit to Victoria British Columbia Canada.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

10 Best Trips of Summer

Hey guys today we are going through the top and the best trips of summer in the world, which helps all of u guys to choose your this years holidays foe this summer.

1.    Muskoka Cottage Country, Ontario, Canada

Photo: Chairs on a dock on Kahshe Lake in Muskoka Ontario

Cottage country is a common name in Eastern canada for areas that are popular locations for recreational properties such as cottages and summer homes.In Eastern Canada, “cottage country” covers any lake destination within easy driving distance for a quick weekend getaway. Central Ontario’s district’s close to Toronto—about two hours north via Highways 400 and 11—while still offering an unplugged pace that’s a world away from Canada’s largest city. The 2,500-square-mile natural playground includes 8,699 miles of shoreline; 17 historic towns and villages; and countless waterfalls and lakes bordered by the granite peaks of Algonquin Provincial Park to the east and the 30,000 islands of Georgian to the west. Spend the day paddle boarding on Muskoka Lake or exploring the River walk and shops of Canada’s waterfall capital, Brace Bridge. For an old-school family vacation, head north to Peninsula Lake’s Pow-Wow Point Lodge, a 91-year-old, all-inclusive resort featuring simple summer pleasures like campfires, canoeing, and volleyball. Plan an August visit to catch Algonquin Park’s educational Thursday evening wolf howls starring—weather-permitting—the reclusive, inhabitant, four-pawed chorus.

2.Patagonia, Argentina

Photo: Skier jumping off a rock

Photograph by Michael Truelove
Patagonia is a region located at the southern end of South America, territory shared by Argentina and Chile, Follow winter to the Southern Andes to experience cool summer adventures on the world’s highest mountain range outside of Asia. Mid-June to late September resorts in Argentina's Patagonia region (accessible via direct flights from Buenos Aries) offer beginner-to-expert downhill terrain; deep, dry powder; open bowl, glacier and gladded tree skiing; and snowboarding. Patagonia’s comparatively lower altitudes (3,300 foot-base elevation at Cerro Catedral versus 7,349 feet at Las Lenas, Argentina’s largest ski area) help first-time visitors avoid high-altitude sickness. Stay at the Hotel to enjoy snowcapped Patagonian Andes and glacial Lake Nahuel Huapí views, transportation to nearby Cerro Bayo ski resort, and guided horseback and snowshoe treks through neighboring Nahuel Huapí National Park. Constructed of local stone and beech, the luxury resort delivers après ski pampering in its tranquil indoor pool, herbal hamman, and spa. For double-black diamond skiers, Adventure outfitter Andes Cross customizes small heli-ski and free-ride backcountry tours in the remote reaches of northern Patagonia between El Calafate and Bariloche.

3.San Juan Islands, Washington

Photo: Sunset over islands

Photograph by Phil Schermeister, National Geographic
Summer in Washington’s San Juan Islands is all about the weather, whales, and water. The Olympic Peninsula’s rain shadow effect (basically, the mountains block rain-producing weather systems) produces dry, clear, comfortable days on the archipelago’s four named islands—San Juan, Orcas, Lopez, and Shaw. Hike in Lime Kiln Point State Park on the west side of San Juan for shore-based orca whale watching or join a Sea Quest kayak tour for a porpoise-level view. Ferry hop to Lopez for leisurely biking, then spend the night on Orcas at Turtleback Farm Inn, a bucolic working farm bordering the 1,576-acre Turtleback Mountain Preserve. The islands are accessible via direct 30-to-45-minute flight from Seattle, or choose the drive-on Washington State Ferry to travel along the San Juan Islands Scenic Byway. The route follows traditional Coast Salish tribal canoe channels via marine highway from Anacortes to San Juan, then continues as two separate driving tours on San Juan and Orcas. Ferries are packed in summer, so arrive early and stay patient, especially on the eastbound ride back to reality.

4.Minneapolis, Minnesota

Photo: Fans cheer at a baseball game 

Photograph by Bruce Kluckhohn, Getty Images
A pedestrian-and-pedal-friendly downtown and welcoming Midwestern vibe make it easy for first-time visitors to quickly feel at home in Minneapolis. Snow can fall here from October to April, so the arrival of warm weather launches a full throttle, June-August celebration of arts, music, and cultural festivals (check out the Minneapolis Aquatennial, July 16-24); farmers markets (17); and fan-friendly Minnesota Twins baseball (played downtown at Target Field—ranked the top sports stadium in North America by ESPN The Magazine). Survey the vibrant scene from the new CRAVE restaurant rooftop patio near the State Theatre, then grab a bike at the nearest Nice Ride Minnesota kiosk ($5 plus trip fees) and cruise all or part of the Grand Rounds National Scenic Byway, a 50-mile urban trail loop. With 22 city lakes and the mighty Mississippi, playing on, in or near the water always is an option. Indoor activities center on the city’s 57 museums and the 4.2 million-square-foot Mall of America housing 520 plus stores and Nickelodeon Universe, the nation’s largest indoor family theme park.

5. Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska

Photo: Man stands next to a glacier

Photograph by Alaska Stock Images/National Geographic
Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve is pure Alaska on the rocks. Glaciers cover 27 percent of this 3.2-million-acre marine wilderness, World Heritage site, and UNESCO Biosphere Preserve, home to humpback whales, harbor porpoises, moose, black and brown bears, mountain goats, and mountain peaks topping 15,000 feet. Mid-May to September, cruise past deep fjords, coastal forests, and the main attractions—seven active tidewater glaciers calving glaciers into the bay. Though most visitors see the park topside from cruise ships, locally owned park concessionaire Glacier Bay Sea Kayaks offers guided and unguided daylong kayak adventures, as well as multi-day rentals for experienced backcountry campers who want to explore the 700-plus miles of shoreline. Additional overnight options include Glacier Bay Lodge (the only lodging in the park) and the adjacent walk-in campground in Bartlett Cove, plus rustic inns, lodges, and cabins ten miles away in Gustavus, Glacier’s tiny gateway town. Located about 65 miles northwest of Juneau, Glacier Bay National Park is accessible only by cruise ship, tour boat, or seaplane, or, new for 2011, via the Monday and Wednesday (May-September) Alaska Marine Highway System ferry to Gustavus.

6.Cardiff, Wales

Photo: Interior of building

Photograph by Keith Morris, Alamy
Historically a city of castles and coal, Wales’s capital is emerging as a modern sports-entertainment destination. Summer action centers on Cardiff Bay, once the world’s largest coal-exporting port, now a 500-acre freshwater lake with eight miles of waterfront. Surrounding diversions, part of Europe’s largest waterfront development, include shopping and dining at Mermaid Quay, rafting and kayaking at Cardiff International White Water, and windsurfing and power boating on the bay. Celebrate the August bank holiday weekend (August 27-29) at the Cardiff Harbour Festival featuring tall ships, free activities, and, new for 2011, the Breitling Wingwalkers aerobatic formation team. From Mermaid Quay, take an Aqua bus or water taxi up the River Taff or bike along the Taff Trail to Cardiff’s compact city center. Signature sites here include the free National (closed Mondays), iconic Cardiff Castle (host of the Grand, August 13-14, the 150-store St. David’s (named Global Retail Leisure International’s 2010 international shopping center of the year), and Millennium Stadium, site of several London 2012 Olympic Games soccer matches and the Brit Speedway Grand Prix, June 25.

7.Stockholm Archipelago, Sweden

Photo: Cafe on the water 

Photograph by Frank Chmura, Alamy
Nearly 25,000 islands—only a thousand of them inhabited—make up Stockholm’s maritime “garden on the rocks.” The vast archipelago stretches more than 62 miles from north to south over emerald waters best explored via kayak, canoe, sailboat, or classic white ferry. Sweden’s allemansrätt (right of public access to land) makes it possible to roam freely throughout the verdant inner archipelago and the rocky outer reaches. In return for being responsible environmental stewards, travelers can picnic on sandy white beaches, camp on rocky islets, hike in pine forests, swim in secluded coves, and go ashore on any open space—all under a cobalt blue sky that, June through early July, doesn’t darken until 10 p.m. The closest island, Fjäderholmarna, is about a 25-minute ferry ride from the docks at Slussen, Stockholm’s public transportation hub, where you also can hop an eco-friendly bus, tram, or metro to connect to archipelago restaurants, museums, parks, and nature preserves. Lodging options include pastel wooden cottages in the village of Vaxholm, spartan youth hostels, quaint inns, and chartered yachts moored at the Royal Swedish Yacht Club’s historic marina in Sandhamn, site of Sandhamn Race Week, July 2-4.

8.Azores, Portugal

Photo: People lounge on the waterfront

Photograph by Günter Gräfenhain, Huber/SIME
A remote location—about a thousand miles west of continental Portugal—has helped limit tourist traffic and development in this unspoiled North Atlantic archipelago. The nine major islands—connected by ferry service in summer, are home to green volcanic mountains, mineral hot springs, hydrangea-covered hills, rambling vineyards, white-washed seaside towns, cobblestone lanes, and traditional Flemish and Moorish windmills. Terceira (“the lilac island”) is known for its weaving tradition and 50 brightly painted imperios (empires), ornate chapels of the Holy Spirit. São Miguel, the biggest island, includes Ponta Delgada (the Azores' largest city), secluded black and white sand beaches, and natural steam vent ovens at Furnas Lake where Portuguese cozido (stew) is cooked in earthen pots buried along the volcanic shoreline. Faial, named “the blue island” for its abundant hydrangeas and blue-trimmed homes, features numerous grottoes, caves, churches, and museums, as well as the bustling Horta marina, a popular stopover point for transatlantic yachtsmen. May to September is the island-wide festival season with numerous religious processions and cultural events celebrating patron saints, the sea, and the local whaling heritage.

9. Roatan, Honduras

Photo: Diver swims near a shark

Photograph by Ivan Pisarenko, Archivolatino/Redux
Located about 30 miles north of the Honduran mainland, this divers’ dream destination is encircled by a living coral reef, extending directly from the shore. The shallow-water, reef eco-system is teeming with tropical marine life, making the underwater pageantry easily accessible to snorkelers and novice divers. No longer a best-kept Caribbean secret, the largest of Honduras’ Bay Islands is working—through the grassroots Roatan Marine Park—to promote sustainable growth by fostering a sense of environmental responsibility among locals and visitors. At the Roatan Institute for Marine Sciences, located on the grounds of the all-inclusive Anthony’s Key Resort, guests can participate in government-sanctioned recreational and educational dolphin programs. Options include snorkeling with more than a dozen bottlenose dolphins; unstructured, small-group dolphin dives 60 feet below the surface; and a six-day Dolphin Scuba Camp for kids ages 5-14. For the ultimate Roatan retreat, book an over-the-water, thatched-roof cabana at the secluded Mango Creek Lodge in Port Royal harbor on the island’s less-traveled East End. Spend the morning fishing on the saltwater flats or kayaking through the mangrove canals, then float back to your cabana’s private deck for some afternoon hammock time.

10. Istria, Croatia

EPhoto: Girl jumps off a dock into water
More than 40 beaches on Istria’s 333-mile coast have earned a coveted Blue Flag for superior water quality and environmental management standards. While not as familiar to North Americans as Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, this densely forested peninsula at the top right-hand corner of the Adriatic Sea has been a popular summer hot spot since Austro-Hungarian Empire days. Head west and south for crystalline blue bays, tranquil coves, and white pebble and sandy shores bordered by fragrant pines. The Medulin Riviera, located near Istria’s southern tip, offers 49 miles of coastline, plus hilltop medieval villages and ancient ruins to explore. Just south of Medulin is rugged Cape Kamenjak, an edge-of-the-world nature reserve featuring sheer 70-foot cliffs, hidden coves, and flat stone outcroppings nature-made for sunbathing. The current is powerful here, so you may want to play it safe and watch the windsurfing and cliff-jumping action from the safety of the rocky shore. Make time to visit the regional capital Pula, home of the Pula Arena. This remarkably intact first-century Roman amphitheatre hosts numerous summer concerts and events, including the July 16-23 portion of the 58th Pula Film Festival.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Gir Forest National Park & Wildlife Sanctuary

PERFECT 10 WILDLIFE & SAFARI TRAVEL: Gir Forest National Park & Wildlife Sanctuary
Looking for an exotic destination for wildlife tourism in India? Well, your search ends here. In this article I am recommending you to visit Gir Forest National Park & Wildlife Sanctuary which is considered as one of the best destinations for jungle tourism in the country. Located in the Indian state of Gujarat it is the only lion sanctuary in India and considered to be one of the most sought after and famous protected areas in Asia because of its supported species. This national park in India covers an area of 1150 square kilometers with 300 square kilometers forming the core area of the national park. Wildlife enthusiasts from all over the world visit Gir Forest – the sole home of the pure Asiatic Lions (panthera leo persica). With diverse flora and fauna the forest reserve of Sasan Gir enjoys an excellent ecosystem. It is has been one of the much admired animal sanctuaries to see in India. 
According to the April 2010 Census, there are 411 Asiatic lions in Sasan Gir Forest. Seeing Asiatic lions in natural habitats can be truly an exhilarating experience and you will relish the experience for lifetime. Other carnivorous animals found at this jungle include Indian leopards, golden jackals, Indian mongoose, Indian palm civets, sloth bears, jungle cats, striped hyenas, honey badgers, etc. Rusty spotted cats and desert cats also can be seen rarely. Herbivorous animals found at Gir Forest National Park include Spotted Deer (Chital), Blue Bull (Nilgai), Sambar (Horse Deer), Four-horned Antelope, Chinkara, Wild Boar, Blackbuck, etc. Porcupine and hare are also commonly seen small mammals at the sanctuary. Pangolins can be also seen rarely here.
Apart from mammals, the forest of Sasangir Jungle is also home to 300 different kinds of birds (most of which are resident), 37 different kinds of reptiles and more that 2000 different kinds of insects. Commonly seen bird species at this wildlife sanctuary include vultures, crested-hawk eagle, brown fish owl, great horned owl, crested serpent eagle, endangered Bonelli’s eagle, pygmy woodpecker, Indian pitta, Indian grey hornbill, crested treeswift, black-headed oriole, quail bush, etc. Indian tortoise, monitor lizards, pythons, etc commonly seen species of reptiles in the jungle. Thus the sanctuary is indeed a destination for exhilarating and enjoyable wildlife tourism in India.
Now if u r really a big fan of ling of all animals Lion then this is the best place to travel , you can fell lions like never before and enjoy every bit of the wildlife tourism.

Travel Ideas

                                                      Travel Ideas
Hey guys this blog is all about traveling experiences that I have gone through and through these ideas I want to share my experience to all of u to get finest travel experiences around the globe.

 Today we are going to experience top ten travel places around the globe to be traveled for adventures trip. So here are the list of these top ten adventures places to travel and also respective travel ideas.

 1. Ski touring the Haute Route, France and Switzerland

Strap on the skins for one of the world’s great ski experiences as you tour between the famed Alpine resorts of Chamonix and Zermatt. Most skiers take around a week to complete the 140km, hut-to-hut route, crossing 20 glaciers and savoring views of many of the Alps’ highest and finest peaks. Expect more than a leisurely jaunt: the terrain is challenging, and climbs along the route total more than 10,000m. If you prefer feet to skis, you can always wait for summer and hike the Walkers’ Haute Route. Guided tours depart from Chamonix; expect to pay in excess of US$2250 depending on group size. Basic mountaineering skills and the ability to ski off piste are essential.

2. Cycling the Ice fields Parkway, Canada

Stretching 230km between Jasper and Lake Louise and following a lake-lined valley between two chains of the Rocky Mountains, the Ice fields Parkway is considered one of the world’s most scenic roads. Cyclists also know it as one of the great mountain-biking tours. The impatient can ride it in two days, but well-spaced camping grounds and hostels mean it can also be lingered over for four or five days. Expect mountains, lakes and a menagerie of mammals – goats, bighorn sheep, elk, moose and perhaps even black and grizzly bears. Check the route map at; you can hire bicycles at shops in Banff, Alberta, for around C$40 a day.

3. Bungee jumping at Verzasca Dam, Switzerland

They call it the Golden Eye jump, as it was on this Ticino dam that Pierce Brosnan, aka James Bond, fell so far that in order to recreate the stunt you must submit yourself to the world’s highest commercial bungee jump, a leap of 220m. Make the classic swan dive or leap backwards, and then endure a 7½-second fall that will border on eternity. Only later will you appreciate the fact that you’ve just relived the stunt once voted the best in movie history. Jumps are conducted between Easter and October. The Golden Eye jump costs €170 the first time and is half price if you do it again on the same day. You know what Bond would do.

4. Mountain biking in Moab, USA

Moab is the mother of all mountain biking destinations, its fame riding on the slick rock (smooth, wind-polished rock) that makes mountain biking in this Utah town unique. Top of the pops in Moab is the Slick rock Bike Trail, arguably the most famous mountain-biking route in the world. This 20km loop crosses sandstone ridges above the town, a roller-coaster route of super steep climbs and plunging descents. If you’re nervous about whether you’re slick enough for the Slick rock Bike Trail, you can always pluck up courage on the 3km practice loop. One-day or multi-day tour options are available. Bring your own bike or rent one and go for broke.

5. Rock climbing at Krabi, Thailand

Fancy a tropical beach that’s more about cams than tans, and where the closest thing to a thong is your harness? Then you should come to Krabi. This city on Thailand’s Andaman is blessed with spectacular karts formations, even in the middle of Krabi River, making it one of the world’s great climbing destinations. If you’re serious about scaling a cliff, you’ll want to head for Railay, west of the city. This peninsula’s steep, pocketed limestone cliff s offer a liquorice allsorts of climbing features, including good overhangs and the occasional hanging stalactite. You’ll find accommodation, guides and gear for hire at Ao Nang and Railay East Beach; over 650 routes have been pioneered in the area since the 1980s.

6. Kayaking on Glacier Bay, USA

The name alone ought to be enough to tempt any sea-kayaker, but the reality goes beyond even the moniker. In Alaska’s Glacier Bay, 10 glaciers flow down from the mountains, filling the sea with an assortment of icebergs. The tour boat MV Spirit of Adventure can drop kayakers at various points in the bay, so you can pretty much paddle where you please. The truly hardy eschew the boat and paddle from Bartlett Cove to the glaciers of Muir Inlet (allow about two weeks). The blockbuster ‘bergs are in the West Arm, though camping there is limited. Beach camping on the Beardslee Islands allows you to extend your time with nature.

7. Walking in Kruger National Park, South Africa

What better way to mingle with a hungry horde of lions, cheetahs, rhinos, elephants and giraffes in South Africa’s most famous park than on foot? Kruger has seven wilderness walking trails, along which you can take guided overnight walks with armed guides. Of the trails, the Napi Trail is noted as the best for spotting the big five (black rhino, Cape buffalo, elephant, leopard and lion). Most of the walks last for two days and three nights, covering around 20km each day at a leisurely pace… unless, of course, you notice a lion behind you. A four-day walking safari costs between US$800–1000 for groups of no more than eight..

8. Hiking the Larapinta Trail, Australia

For 223km of desert delights, set aside a fortnight to walk the Larapinta Trail through central Australia’s West MacDonnell Ranges, one of the oldest mountain chains in the world. Stretching between Alice Springs and Mt Sonder, the Larapinta winds through oasis-like gorges, over sharp quartzite ridge tops and across desert plains. Regular camp sites and water tanks mute the desert’s ferocity but not its beauty – this is the Red Centre at its finest. Food drops can also be arranged to ease the load on your back. The full expedition costs AU$3960.

9. Trek the Torres Del Paine, Chile

Like a fistful of broken fingers, Chile’s Torres Del Paine rise more than 2000m from the Patagonian Steppes. For ‘real’ trekkers these ‘Towers of Pain’ are one of the most instantly recognizable features on the planet. The classic walk here is the so-called ‘W’ trek, which takes about five days. Beginning at Laguna Amarga, the W climbs to the spectacular Torres del Paine Lookout, immediately below the towers, and continues via Los Cuero’s and Lago Pehoé to Lago Grey, famed for its flotillas of icebergs – some as big as houses. Trails are well marked; trek in autumn or spring to avoid crowds. The ‘W’ trek can be completed in six days, including the return bus trip from Puerto Natales. Sunrise illuminates the Torres del Paine one by one, transforming them into slabs of gold.

10. Swimming with killer whales, Norway

Close your eyes and think of friendly dolphins and you might find it easier to roll overboard and into Norway’s Tysfjord. For three months each year, orcas settle into this fjord, chasing a feed of herring. Hard behind them are the whale-watching boats and the few hardy snorkellers prepared to brave both the Arctic waters and their visiting killer whales. For something marginally warmer, you may prefer to hire a kayak for a paddle among the cetaceans..