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  • Writer's picturePretty Little Wanders

Top 10 Travel Adventures

As travellers we all have a list of ultimate adventures, bucket lists if you will, places we'd like to go, things we would like to see and experience; whether it's swimming with sharks, seeing the Taj Mahal or sand surfing in the Sahara. I know I've got a list as long as my arm! I've also been fortunate enough to make some of these a reality, so here's my top ten travel adventures from around the world so far. Whether you are just looking for some travel ideas or are a self-confessed adrenaline junkie, you'll be sure to find some inspiration in here for your bucket list!

1. Swimming with whale sharks in Mexico

The thrill of swimming beside these gentle giants as they glide gracefully just under the waters surface, was for me a mesmerising life experience. I will never forget that connection of looking straight into the eye of the oceans largest fish (roughly the size of a double decker bus!!) and have it look right back at me. Having swam with whale sharks both in the Maldives and near Isla Mujeres, Mexico, I would recommend the experience in Mexico as it was safer on so many levels.

2. Paragliding onto a beach in Rio, Brazil

Rio de Janeiro has some stunning beaches surrounded by a beautiful mountainous coastline and the feeling of flying like a bird and landing straight onto Ipanema beach (and on Boxing Day as well!) is something that just has to be experienced for the amazing panoramic views.

3. Sky diving in Taupo, New Zealand

Once the feelings of panic and sheer fear pass as you jump out of a perfectly good plane at 15,000 metres, it takes a few seconds to get used to the adrenaline rush that free falling at 200 kms per hour gives you, and then you can really start enjoying the views of the North Island and the spectacular scenery of Lake Taupo. What a way to see New Zealand!

4. Bungee Jumping in Taupo, New Zealand

It's New Zealand's highest cliff-top bunjee jump, located 154 feet above the stunning emerald Waikato River. I must say, it was somewhat difficult to enjoy these magnificent views as I was getting a bunjee tied to my ankles and standing at the edge of the ledge! You'll probably notice I'm not in the picture (but can you spot where the bungee platform is?), my fall from the ledge was, how can I put it.... completely unladylike (shockingly unladylike!) and my abs ached for days as my whole body was so tense from the fear of this fall! But the adrenaline rush afterwards had me ready to book the next jump!

5. Walking on an active volcano, Pacaya, Guatemala

The excitement of trekking up an active volcano, using a wooden walking stick to test the lava before you step on it makes you feel like a proper adventurer! The flow of the lava when cooled creates some beautiful patterns, and the slight melting of the rubber soles of your trainers from the heat of the lava reminds you how potentially dangerous this is! I did this hike back in 2009 and although you can still hike up Pacaya Volcano, as of 2016, you can't get this close to the action due to health and safety precautions, and in my opinion, they are needed!

6. Trekking in the Amazon Jungle, Pantanal, Brazil

The Amazon jungle is one of the few parts of the world that still remain partially unexplored and if you are a nature and animal lover the trek through hot, humid and wet conditions in the jungle accompanied with the cacophony of animal sounds leave you anticipating the next wildlife encounter; be it jaguar tracks, tarantulas, spotting giant sea otters on an Amazon river safari, or discovering the existence of the capybara (a giant rodent native to South America).

7. Camping in the Wadi Rum, Jordan

Sleeping in bedouin tents under the stars, eating food cooked underground in a traditional zarb, exploring the desert landscape by camel back and gaining a real insight into bedouin life by visiting our guides' family for a traditional coffee drinking ceremony are just a few of the highlights of this extraordinary experience in an extraordinary country.

8. Road trip in the Australian Outback, Australia

Covering an area of over 5 million square kilometres, a road trip in the Australian outback is bound to be filled with some incredible sceneries and landscapes such as the Undarra lava tubes, Simpson Gap, Uluru, Kata Tjuta and so many more. The possibilities for hikes and swims in little water holes is endless, look out for wild camels, snakes, kangaroos, emus and marvel at the road trains. Don't forget to look up, watch for shooting stars in some of the starriest night skies you'll ever see, as there is so little light pollution out here.

9. Exploring the ancient ruins of Angkor, Cambodia

Whilst Angkor Wat is the most famous and well restored temple of the Angkor region, there are over a thousand other temples many of which are still in ruins and ripe for exploration. A lot of these temples have been consumed by the jungle and the most amazing trees grow out from them. Nature really has run riot here. One such temple is Ta Prohm, made famous by the movie Tomb Raider starring Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft. Others include Bayon, Prea Khan and Beng Melea temples. You can have a field day playing your own Indiana Jones here!

10. Taking a hot air balloon ride in Bagan, Myanmar

To get some of the best views of Bagan's 8,000 temples and pagodas, a hot air balloon ride is the way to go. Having also explored some of the temples by foot and horse-drawn carriage too, the balloon ride is definitely worth splurging for, as it gives you a much greater sense of the scale and beauty of these structures.

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