Eight luxury adventure trips for 2022, from Patagonia to Palau
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Going out into the wild on an action-packed adventure doesn’t necessarily mean skimping on creature comforts.
Blue lake against the backdrop of snow-capped mountains and cloudy sky Torres del Paine.
Photograph by Getty Images
Posted January 12, 2022, 06:07 GMT
After a few uncertain years for travel, the industry is reporting growing demand for luxury adventure travel by 2022. The good news is that getting into the wild doesn’t mean sacrificing quality accommodation, private transportation, exclusive excursions and privacy. From descents on fresh snow in Antarctica to climbing volcanoes in Ecuador, there are plenty of options.
1. Camping in the desert in Australia
Longitude 131 ° is a luxury desert camp located in the middle of the red sands of the Australian Outback, 11 kilometers north of Uluru. It offers guests daily guided excursions, including the chance to discover the iconic monument, walk through gorges and visit the Field of Light, an installation of 50,000 spheres that light up the desert. The camp, which includes 15 luxury tents, spa facilities, a swimming pool, and a library, offers spectacular sunrise and sunset views, as well as al fresco dining. Jacada Trip offers bespoke luxury adventures in Australia. Her 19-day Ultimate Australia trip offers travelers a chance to reconnect with the elements in comfort, with two nights spent at Longitude 131 °.
Essential: The trips are tailor-made, with prices starting at £ 18,400 per person including accommodation and meals, domestic flights and transfers.
2. Hiking and kayaking in Chilean Patagonia
Remote, windswept and diverse in terrain and climate, Chilean Patagonia encompasses countless adventure sites, from the peaks of the
From Torres del Paine National Park to the glacial lakes of the Pingo Valley. Luxury wellness expert Health Travel offers an expedition that connects travelers to Patagonian nature. Accommodation for the nine-night trip is at Awasi Patagonia, a private reserve with 14 luxurious overwater cabins on the edge of Torres del Paine National Park. Activities include hiking with an expert along secluded trails, biking and horseback riding. Each day’s adventure ends in the reserve, making yourself comfortable in front of a cabin fireplace or in a private hot tub under the stars. There are over 30 experiences to choose from. One is a multi-day hike to Glacier Gray, where hiking boots are exchanged for paddles for a six-hour kayak that travels between the Rio Gray and Rio Serrano canyons, passes a waterfall, and stops at Tyndall Glacier before a final push through Tyndall Lake, disembarking at The Last Hope Sound and Serrano Glacier. The trip ends with a barbecue and a stay in a luxury hotel with saunas and swimming pools to recover.
Essential: From £ 6,400 including accommodation, meals and activities.
3. Snorkeling and kayaking in Palau
This archipelago of more than 500 islands in Micronesia is home to more than 1,300 species of fish and 700 types of corals. There are emerald forests that stretch across clear turquoise waters, with more pops of color underwater. The conservation-oriented Palau operates a 193,000 square mile marine reserve (one of the largest in the world). . National Geographic Expeditions lead a small group trip (16 people) here with expert guides. The 10-day itinerary begins and ends in Koror at a luxury hotel overlooking the lagoon. From there, the group sets out to dive, paddle, sail and swim around part of the archipelago, through caves adorned with stalactites and into hidden coves for lunch before staying at the resorts in course, with smaller hikes scattered inland. Part of the route heads to one of Palau’s most unusual natural wonders, Jellyfish Lake, a saltwater lake home to around 20 million non-stinging golden jellyfish, as well as the Milky Way Lagoon, where you can bathe in clay rich in calcium.
Essential: From £ 6,095 pp including meals, accommodation, activities and transfers.
Palau Barrier Reef divers explore giant sea fans and giant corals.
Photograph by Getty Images
4. Dive in Oman
Oman’s coastline stretches nearly 2,000 miles and most of it is relatively unspoiled, leaving an abundance of marine life to thrive in its nutrient-rich and warm waters throughout the year. Many of the same species of coral and marine life native to the Red Sea are also found here, with 22 species of dolphins and whales and schools of mobula rays populating the warm waters. With golden mountains as a backdrop, the capital, Muscat, is the perfect base for diving trips – there are over 40 nearby dive sites that are home to wrecks, islands and deep drop offs. Having a water temperature that is slightly cooler than the rest of the coastline brings in a lot of plankton, which attracts dolphins, reef sharks, turtles, stingrays, and whale sharks. Responsible travel offers an 11-day luxury trip that includes these two dive destinations through daily shore and boat dives. Travel Originating Partners promote inclusiveness for LGBTQ + travelers. In addition, for each trip booked, Responsible Travel organizes a day trip for a disadvantaged child.
Essential: From £ 2,116 pp, including flights, accommodation, dives, equipment hire and some meals.
Ice skating in Stockholm, Sweden.
Photograph by Getty Images
5. Ice driving in Sweden
On the border of the Arctic Circle in Sweden, Lapland Ice Driving is unlike any other in the world. Here, visitors can drive around a full-size replica of a Formula 1 course carved out of a frozen lake. Porsche, Audi, Maserati and other renowned cars are all available for testing on the 13 circuits, set in approximately 3,000 acres of frozen lake. Given its location, it is not uncommon for the Northern Lights to appear above the runway as well. Ker downey offers a five-day Arctic Ice Driving adventure. The journey begins with a stay in the capital, Stockholm, at the Grand Hotel. In the city, guests can explore by bike or on foot, take a boat ride through the archipelago, or see the city in the air from a hot air balloon or private helicopter. The next morning the trip moves to Arvidsjaur for a three night ice adventure at Lapland Ice Driving, where professional drivers are on hand to give instructions. Guests stay at the luxury Silverhatten Hotel, which has a spa to soothe the aftereffects of previous adrenaline rushes.
Essential: The itinerary starts from $ 35,000 (£ 25,800) per person and includes accommodation, experiences and most meals.
Decent ski mountaineering in Antarctica.
Photograph by Alamy
6. Heliskiing in Antarctica
With unspoiled landscapes of ice and snow-capped mountains rising from the sea, Antarctica is a playground for adrenaline-filled activities. Tour operators have a long history of organizing adventure travel to the continent, often incorporating onboard lectures and education programs on their ships. Luxury discovery yacht Picturesque eclipse offers itineraries that also include adventures such as heli-skiing from pristine peaks, scuba diving, and helicopter ice landings. The 16-day all-inclusive trip passes through the remote destination and includes rigid inflatable boat tours and kayak tours. The Scenic Eclipse then continues its journey, sailing through the Beagle Channel, with views spanning the Andean mountains, before crossing the iceberg-filled Lemaire Channel. Accommodation on board is limited to 200 people. While the ship is tailor-made to explore such extreme territories, it doesn’t compromise on luxury either – there’s an onboard spa and Pilates studio, meals are gourmet, and all suites have their own. private veranda.
Essential: Prices from £ 10,107 per person, departing on various dates in February, November and December 2022.
Nansen Island, Antarctica; vicuñas, with the Chimborazo volcano in the background, Ecuador.
Photograph by Alamy
7. Mountaineering in Ecuador
Tropical and glacial climates coexist along the Avenue of the Volcanoes, a corridor of eight snow-capped peaks that stretches south of Ecuador, ideal for novice climbers and attracting relatively few visitors. The Cayambe volcanic peak has notoriously changeable weather conditions, which is an added challenge when ascending its crevassed and glacial slopes; Cotopaxi, at 19,347 feet, is the tallest active volcano in the world, while Chimborazo is Ecuador’s highest peak (20,564 feet), with glaciers and snow-capped glacial terrain. Climbing this trio is a great way to train and test elevation and fitness limits, while providing incredible views with every step. Abercrombie & Kent offers a 16-day trip to try to climb the three peaks. It combines climbs, acclimatization trips, glacier training and skill development for those who wish to gain high altitude climbing experience.
Essential: From £ 20,000 per person including flights, transfers, accommodation, private expedition guide and a full board stay at a purpose built camp.
A woman stands in front of her house and gazes at the green hills of Nyungwe National Park.
Photograph by Alamy
8. Gorilla trekking in Rwanda
Landlocked in the Great Rift Valley, Rwanda currently has 10 groups of endangered mountain gorillas living in Volcanoes National Park – more than anywhere else in the world, representing more than half of the world’s population of 604. Trekking to spot great apes in their natural habitat has become a popular experience with wildlife, but it is not to be taken lightly. The trek to the animals’ favorite habitat in the bamboo forest combines steep muddy slopes, dense vegetation, high elevation and rain. Audley Trip offers an 11-day trip that includes gorilla trekking – travelers can spend up to an hour with gorillas at a safe enough distance to protect the primates. It also includes guided walks to see golden monkeys and hikes in Nyungwe Forest National Park to see chimpanzees. The trip includes luxury accommodation in Rwanda to complete the experience, as well as two relaxing days at Lake Kivu, with inland beaches surrounded by mountains.
Essential: From £ 8,225 per person including flights, full board accommodation and gorilla trekking permits.