I hand someone my business card… “Chief Exploration Officer” followed by “Adventure Travel Specialist” boldly printed on the card, and either their face beams with excitement or contorts into a perplexed expression. And the very first question asked, “What’s adventure travel?”
There is no easy answer. Everyone’s definition of “adventure” is different, and my own definition may very well differ from yours. Yet, it’s printed on my business card so I owe you MY definition, or at least my thoughts.
I’ve traveled off the beaten path, to countries some travelers have not visited. I’ve sand-boarded down active volcanoes, swam in the Amazon River, hiked through rainforests, interacted with wild Sea Lions, snorkeled with Whale Sharks, sea-kayaked in Baja Mexico, hiked in Patagonia, whitewater rafted the Futaleufu River in Chile, and experienced the thrill of rock climbing and rappelling. This is what most people consider “adventure travel.” But there’s more to my definition…a lot more!
Adventure is not just physical; it’s cultural. My adventures also consisted of spending time with indigenous tribes and learning their cultures and traditions. I’ve experienced firsthand what it’s like to live in the rainforest and the struggles of being a farmer in rural countrysides. I’ve had the opportunity to listen to different dialects spoken throughout regions and watched ceremonial dances. Would I define these experiences as adventures? Yes, in a heartbeat!
Adventure is also food! Food that we’re not accustomed to. I’ve dined on guinea pig, enjoyed roasted ants, swallowed my fair share of grubs and worms and drank fermented “jungle juice.” But my adventures have also consisted of some outstanding ceviche in Peru, enjoying the best steaks Brazil has to offer, sipping some amazing Malbec wines in Argentina and indulging on Pisco Sours in Chile. All of this was an adventure not only for my soul but also my tastebuds.
Lastly, adventure is travel…any travel! Getting on a plane is an adventure, unexpected hiccups in your travel plans are an adventure. Having a massage on a beach is an adventure, spending a week in an eco-luxe resort is an adventure; but so is walking an undiscovered beach for the first time, seeing sites firsthand, touring unknown markets, watching breathtaking sunsets, having trade-winds on your face, hearing and seeing unfamiliar birds welcoming the sunrise, or best of all; sharing a smile with a local even though you both speak different languages. Somehow through warm eye contact and friendly gestures, you made a new friend…and all that is definitely adventure.
Have you experienced an adventure lately? Give Forward Momentum a call and let an Adventure Travel Specialist help you plan your next getaway. Whether it’s at an all-inclusive resort or somewhere deep in the jungle, we’ll ensure your next vacation is an adventure!