One of my new gigs is contributing travel stories to the Huffington Post, and a few days back they published my first article, which is a list of my choices for ten great domestic adventure destinations. With the economy still struggling, many people are staying closer to home this year, and I wanted to give some suggestions for great places to visit that offer plenty of outdoor adventure without breaking the budget to travel there.
Amongst my suggestions are such places as Bar Harbor, Maine, which is near Acadia National Park and offers everything from sea kayaking to rock climbing, and even great road cycling. Moab, Utah gets the obligatory nod for its amazing mountain biking of course, and my friends in the Black Hills of South Dakota get a mention too, as it is an amazing place for outdoor adventure that still sits off the radar for a lot of travelers. One of my other picks, The Everglades of Florida, is another seldom visited place, and I’ll be going there at the end of the month, so expect more details about that place as well.
I copped out a little bit in my selection of Alaska to the list. Yes, I picked the entire state, but there is just so much to see and do there, it was hard to narrow it down to just one location. Besides, no matter where you go in Alaska, you’re bound to find some kind of outdoor adventure. Along the coasts you can sea kayak with whales, head into the interior and you’ll find plenty of untouched wilderness for hiking and camping. And of course, mountaineers will head to Denali, or one of the other great peaks, for the climbing opportunities as well. It truly is an unmatched adventure destination not only for the U.S., but internationally as well.
Of course, narrowing down a list like this to just ten destinations is never easy. I did try to represent a variety of places around the U.S., giving fairly close options no matter where someone lived. Clearly Colorado is under represented as well, but that’s mostly because places like Boulder and Fort Collins are already well known. Colorado is a great option, but I was hoping to spotlight a few that maybe people didn’t know so much about or hadn’t considered before. The list could easily have expanded to twice the size without too much trouble.
So? What are your favorite domestic adventure destinations?
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2 thoughts on “Ten Great Domestic Adventure Destinations”
I think you should look up "adventure" in the dictionary, or at least clarify your own definition.
To me, it must include the aspect of not being able to control or predict the situation.
Thus, "adventure tours" are a complete oxymoron; an obvious marketing ploy. The word has become an irritating overuse, like "100% natural" products appearing all over the supermarket shelves.
All of the places on your list are worthwhile visits, but being a "natural wonder" has nothing to do with "adventure". The entire state of Alaska definitely qualifies, but Mammoth Cave requires you to be escorted along guardrails after getting in line to pay admission … that's "adventure"?
And if you think, "there is no place that compares to Mammoth Cave", you clearly haven't done the 300' free rappel into the Lost World of New Zealand! 🙂
Everyone has a different definition of what "adventure" means to them. Yours is different than mine, and mine is different from a lot of other people.
I write for a variety of sites with a variety of audiences. Knowing your audience is part of the job. The audience here is very different from the one at Gadling or the Huffington Post for instance.
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