Many travelers seek out destinations that are particularly suited to specific activities, such as scuba diving or rock climbing. Some of these travel activities require specific gear, training, or planning to pursue, while others may be as simple as slipping into a warm spring to enjoy the soothing waters.
- See also: sport
Many of the activities below can also be practised as gentle pastimes and are not seen as sports by all practitioners.
Terrain based sports
- See also: Water sport
- Ice skating
- Ice swimming
- Sea kayaking
- Whale watching
- Whitewater sports
- See also: Scuba diving
Scuba diving is a sport in which people breathing from tanks of compressed air explore underwater areas. It's most popular in areas with tropical coral reefs, but there are scuba diving sites in most areas of the world with water.
Hiking, riding and running
Quad bikes and snowmobiles
Riding quad bikes (also known as ATVs--all-terrain vehicles) is a sport that involves riding on a small, rugged vehicle, usually in off-road areas. This activity is provided by commercial operators around the world:
- Western USA
- Central Utah
Riding independently, quad bikers should consider possible damage to soil and plants, and thus check local regulations prior to embarking on a trip.
Normally, quad bikes are designed only for a single rider (although are frequenly rented for riding by two). There's only one model of quad bike that has is designed for two persons, and that model is quite rare in commercial rent.
- See also: Winter sport
- Alpine skiing
- Telemark skiing
- Cross country skiing
- Ice skating
- Winter swimming
- See also: Ziplining
Zip lining refers to an activity where participants (often referred to as “zippers”), are suspended from a pulley that moves across a cable suspended between trees or man-made structures. The cables are mounted descending from a higher to lower point which propels the zipper purely by the use of gravity. The amount of incline as well as the weight of the zipper determines the speed at which the participant travels from point to point.
Zip line courses can be designed purely for speed (adrenaline rush), while others are designed to allow zippers to enjoy the natural surroundings such as forest, jungle or waterfalls (often referred to as canopy tours). While others employ elements of both.
Agritourism means travel organized around farming or animal husbandry. Visiting a working farm or ranch for the purpose of enjoyment and education are key parts of this often rural experience. Farmer's markets, wine tourism, cider houses and corn mazes all constitute examples of agritourism. Travelers who participate in this type of vacation frequently desire to see how food is grown and prepared or to learn how animals are raised. Occasionally there are opportunities to tour small, local food manufacturing companies, such as cheese factories, although this is becoming less common as mass production increasingly crowds out the independent operators.
Wine tourism is travel organized around the appreciation of, tasting of, and purchase of wine. A kind of tourism highly developed in many regions, it can be as simple as hopping on a wine shuttle in Napa Valley or as complicated as renting a villa in the south of France for a month. Wine tourism is a great way to learn about the people, culture, heritage, and customs of an area. Some of the famous wine producing regions of the world have been producing wine for centuries or even millennia, and the production and consumption of wine is deeply ingrained in the local culture.
See Food#Specific topics for information on enjoying food and drink around the world.
- See also: Gambling
See also #Birding.
Be very cautious about dangerous animals.
Photographing wildlife generally requires a telephoto lens; this allows you to keep your distance, both for your own safety and to avoid ruining the shot by spooking the animals.
Birding or Birdwatching is an activity that is undertaken by both the hobbyist and the professional scientist.
See also #Wildlife watching.
- Camargue, France
- Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary near Panaji, India
- Karnala Bird Sanctuary in Konkan, India
- Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary in Bharatpur Division, India
- Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary in Mandya, India
- Nakdong River Estuary Migratory Bird Sanctuary in Busan, South Korea
- Qinghai Lake in Qinghai, China, mainly for migrating water birds
- The isle of Skomer in Wales
- Olango Island in the Philippines
- Sierra Vista in Arizona, "the hummingbird capital of the world"
See also our travel photography articles for advice on lenses for birding.
Hot air balloons
Learning languages abroad
- See also: Talk
Travelling to a foreign country both for leisure purposes and to study the local language can be an excellent way to deepen ones experience in a foreign culture and to combine leisure with learning. Although perhaps more common for people between the ages of 18 and 24, language tourism is undertaken by people of all ages and backgrounds. They tend to enroll in non-intensive foreign language courses that allow considerable free time in which to practice the language outside of class and travel extensively. Typical stays range from 2 to 5 weeks, and trips are often repeated in subsequent years.
- See also: Travel photography
- See also: Sauna
Sauna is a bathing facility where sweating in a hot room is an essential part of the cleaning procedure. Sauna is used for getting clean, but very much also to relax and socialize. Sauna is also used for getting warm before and after ice swimming (and any swimming in cold water).
- See also: Spas
A trip to the spa is a common travel activity. It can be a great way to experience local culture and customs, enjoy some serious relaxation and/or remove the grime that accumulates while on the global road.