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Our Favorite Adventure Travel Blogs

November 21st, 2014 by karen cleary

For those of us in the adventure travel world, there is nothing like getting on a plane and landing in a foreign land: somewhere new and unknown, ripe for exploration. It’s what we all live for at Boundless Journeys. But at the same time, each of us at the office has a life here in Vermont, sometimes keeping us grounded for longer than we’d intended.

When that happens, the next best thing is to take a short, virtual sabbatical to check in with the adventurers who inspire us, make us laugh, and make us think. From thoughtful travelers who explore where few others have been before, to writers specializing in capturing the magic and frustrations of living abroad – from the high profile to the obscure – these are just a few of the adventure travel blogs we love.

Our favorite all-around travel blog:
Carry On

Travel Blog - Travel + Leisure

The in-house blog of Travel + Leisure magazine contains archives of information covering nearly every destination and subject the adventure traveler can think up.

 

Our favorite adventure travel blog for the mature (but still adventurous!) traveler:

The Adventure Geezer

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Don Mankin is an award-winning travel writer whose humorous and insightful reports on adventure travel for the 50+ set remind us that it’s never too late to embrace a lifetime of exploration.

 

Our favorite high-adventure blog:

Beyond the Edge

Beyond the Edge - National Geographic Adventure Blog

National Geographic’s high-adventure blog captures stories from the field as writers, photographers and crew research the magazine’s compelling destination pieces. Posts in November, 2014 feature a team in Myanmar during a seven-week attempt to identify Southeast Asia’s highest peak.

Our favorite destination-specific travel blog:

2 Summers

2Summers - An American in Quirky Johannesburg

This whimsical and informative blog is written by an American living in Johannesburg, South Africa, providing commentary on a city and country that can be both charming and frustrating by turns.

Our favorite safari-oriented blog:

The Wilderness Safaris Blog

Wilderness Safaris

Whether your travel adventures have included a wildlife safari or not, you’ll enjoy updates (with stunning photos) from the camp staff and guides of this highly respected outfitter.

 

About Boundless Journeys Boundless Journeys is an award-winning small group adventure tour operator. With a diverse collection of locally guided, small-group itineraries and Private Collection trips around the world, Boundless Journeys offers “The World’s Great Adventures.” The adventure trips for 2-16 guests are active, ranging from leisurely cultural explorations and wildlife safaris to challenging trekking ― with plenty of easy to moderate walking and sea kayaking in between.

How to Find the Right Adventure Travel Company

November 14th, 2014 by deborah tobey

Whether you want to trek the Himalayas, walk through the Italian countryside, or go white water rafting in Costa Rica, adventure travel is filled with once in a lifetime experiences. But finding a top adventure travel company that suits your budget, fitness level, expectations, and safety needs can feel overwhelming.
Adventure travelers trust their outfitters to provide a safe, secure experience while maintaining a feeling of stepping out on the edge. Outfitters are also trusted with payment, accommodations, and being able to help should anything go wrong.

Rafting along the Balsa River, in Costa Rica.

Rafting along the Balsa River, in Costa Rica.

In choosing an outfitter, the first step is to browse adventure travel options online and determine the destination or activity you’re seeking. Then pick up the phone and reach out to each of the companies you’re interested in. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. This is the best way to get a feel for the operator and the trip you are considering.
You might ask the company for some references. Boundless Journeys, for example, provides a list of previous travelers to contact. You can also check online resources like TripAdvisor for feedback on outfitters, but take caution not to let one stray comment factor too heavily in your decision.
Ask if the company is owner-operated. You’ll get a more intimate experience with a hands-on approach. Check the ‘About Us’ page. Are they a huge conglomerate that has lost the grass-roots connection to where they started, or are they still an owner-operated company that has developed their goals and values? Do you get a person or a recording when you call?

Trekking near Mt. Chomolhari, in Bhutan.

Trekking near Mt. Chomolhari, in Bhutan.

It is also a good idea to look into the company’s longevity, accolades, and operating standards. Have they been acknowledged in the industry for providing outstanding service? Have they been in business for five years or more? Are their policies stated clearly on their website?
One of the most important factors in choosing a top adventure travel company is to look for an operator with well-trained, local guides. You will want to travel with a guide who speaks the language of your destination, and knows it like the back of his or her hand. If the group is tired, or the weather inclement, a guide who knows the lay of the land can change course at any moment. If there is a special event in town, a local guide will know how to get there, and when to go.
No matter how you decide to go about your adventure, do the research to ensure it will meet and exceed your expectations. In terms of experience, adventure travel is often a complete departure from what most people think of as ‘vacation’. If you choose your operator wisely, you can be prepared to have a unique experience, which, when you return, will change the way you see the world.

About Boundless Journeys Boundless Journeys is an award-winning small group adventure tour operator. With a diverse collection of locally guided, small-group itineraries and Private Collection trips around the world, Boundless Journeys offers “The World’s Great Adventures.” The adventure trips for 2-16 guests are active, ranging from leisurely cultural explorations and wildlife safaris to challenging trekking ― with plenty of easy to moderate walking and sea kayaking in between.

The 10 Best Adventure Travel Destinations in 2015

November 3rd, 2014 by ninafedrizzi

‘Where to next?’ is one of our favorite questions to ask here at Boundless Journeys, and now is the perfect time to look ahead at next year’s travel calendar. From the sapphire-blue Mediterranean to the storied green hills of East Africa, we have a host of exciting new departures on the horizon, and picking our top spots is never easy. But while there are plenty of reasons why each country in our portfolio can be a trip of a lifetime for you, we think these 10 adventure travel destinations are the places to be in 2015. Here’s why:

Croatia: A new trip for us this year, this hidden gem on the Adriatic has just burst onto the international travel scene. We couldn’t agree more with professional chef-traveler Anthony Bourdain’s assessment: “The next big thing is Croatia.”

A hike along the Dalmatian coast, in Croatia.

A hike along the Dalmatian coast, in Croatia.

Why We Love It: Hikes through Aleppo pine forests and fields of lavender, sea kayaking to hidden inlets and coves, Roman and Renaissance architecture, an up-and-coming wine scene, and centuries-old culinary traditions.
When to Go: May 23–30 or September 26 – October 3

Myanmar: Having only recently opened up to the world, Myanmar (or Burma) is untouched by the globalization visible in many other parts of  Asia, and still feels, in many ways, like a land lost in time.

Leg-rowing fishermen, in Inle Lake, Myanmar.

Leg-rowing fishermen, on Inle Lake, Myanmar.

Why We Love It: Landscapes found nowhere else on earth are home to ancient hill tribes, leg-rowing fishermen, and farmers who grow their crops on floating gardens. Plus, the chance to experience the country and its famous ancient temples by foot, hot air balloon, horse-drawn carriage, riverboat, elephant back, and more.
When to Go: March 6–16 or October 9–19

Palau: Never heard of it? That’s just why you should go to Palau, and go now. The rock islands of this Micronesian paradise boast endless marine diversity, making it the ideal setting for our sea kayaking and snorkeling adventure…or if you just want to play castaway for a while.

The rock islands of Palau, in the South Pacific.

The rock islands of Palau, in the South Pacific.

Why We Love It: Tumbling jungle waterfalls, World War II battle sites, and hidden marine lakes filled with hundreds of sting-less jellyfish are just some of the reasons Palau is unlike anywhere else. Nights are spent in safari-style tents at our luxury beach camps, with your own traveling chef to prepare meals along the shore.
When to Go: March 8–17, September 28 – October 7, or November 25 – December 4.

Scotland: Blame it on the influence of pop culture (Harry Potter and Outlander, perhaps?) but the Scottish Highlands are in the middle of a second coming. Let’s face it: castles, kilts, and whiskey never go out of style.

The Eilean Donan castle, in Scotland's western Highlands.

The Eilean Donan castle, in Scotland’s western Highlands.

Why We Love It: Our fresh itinerary takes in Scotland’s wild, unspoiled landscapes: rugged coasts, windy crags, and green heather glens from the remote Orkney Isles to the Isle of Skye, and on to the iconic Highlands.
When to Go: June 13–20 or August 1–8

Slovenia: The country’s photogenic Lake Bled has been making the covers of major travel publications everywhere. If there’s ever been a time to see the storybook landscapes of Eastern Europe’s Slovenia, it’s now.

Lake Bled, in Slovenia.

Lake Bled, in Slovenia.

Why We Love It: High peaks, glittering lakes, and quaint mountain towns make Slovenia’s Julian Alps a truly unsung adventure travel destination. Meanwhile, its rewarding hikes and “Old Europe” atmosphere are sure to charm even the most seasoned wanderers of the Continent.
When to Go: June 27 – July 4, July 18–25, or September 5–12

South Africa: The New York Times named Cape Town its number one place to go this year, and we’re extending your visiting pass. Mixing a little bit of the familiar alongside experiences that can only be found in South Africa, for first-time travelers, it’s the perfect introduction to Africa.

Overlooking a scenic coast outside Cape Town.

Overlooking a scenic coast outside of Cape Town.

Why We Love It: From cosmopolitan Cape Town to the classic safari experiences of Kruger National Park, there’s something to satisfy every type of adventurer—plus the incredible vistas along Table Mountain, a renowned wine region, and even the chance to take a great white shark safari (if you dare).
When to Go: August 4–15

Spain: It’s been a historic pilgrimage route for centuries, but our new, inn-to-inn Camino de Santiago Special Event brings a fresh perspective—and all the modern comforts you need—to this timeless and contemplative trail.

Scenes along the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route.

Scenes along the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route.

Why We Love It: Our curated hikes highlight the best of the route—which spans from France across northern Spain—with overnights in medieval abbeys, rustic Spanish meals and Rioja wine, and guided visits to the Guggenheim Museum and other famous sites along the way.
When to Go: June 9–20

Tanzania: It’s an endlessly layered place, yet most visitors do little more than scratch Tanzania’s surface. Our new Special Event, the Hidden Tanzania Safari, provides an in-depth look at the country through unmatched culture and wildlife experiences—perfect for first-time safari goers and seasoned Africa travelers alike.

On a game drive, in Tanzania.

On a game drive in Tanzania.

Why We Love It: The chance to camp in the bush near the hunter-gatherer Hadzabe tribe, catch a glimpse of the Great Migration, and explore the forests of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area with a Maasai elder. Nights are spent in luxurious tented camps under the stars.
When to Go: June 1–11

Vietnam: Though it’s long been considered a cultural gem of Southeast Asia (not to mention a killer food destination) Vietnam is finally be having its travel moment.

A vendor at a night market in Vietnam.

A night market in Vietnam.

Why We Love It: Explore Hanoi, the “Paris of the Orient”, discover sacred caves and ancient ruins, cruise Ha Long Bay—a UNESCO World Heritage Site—in a traditional sailing boat, and peruse evening markets with your expert local guide.
When to Go: February 28 – March 9 or November 8–17 (or make it a private trip).

Zimbabwe: New this year, our Best of Zimbabwe safari explores the country’s diverse range of habitats, from the huge elephant, buffalo, and sable herds of Hwange National Park, to the placid shores of Lake Kariba (home of the elusive black rhino), to Mana Pools on the mighty Zambezi River.

Black rhino have been reintroduced to Botswana's Okavango Delta.

Black rhino in Zimbabwe.

Why We Love It: Abundant wildlife sightings, deluxe permanent camps in private concessions—ensuring an uncrowded wilderness experience—and a visit to one of the 7 Wonders of the World: Victoria Falls.
When to Go: July 9–18 or August 12–21

About Boundless Journeys Boundless Journeys is an award-winning small group adventure tour operator. With a diverse collection of locally guided, small-group itineraries and Private Collection trips around the world, Boundless Journeys offers “The World’s Great Adventures.” The adventure trips for 2-16 guests are active, ranging from leisurely cultural explorations and wildlife safaris to challenging trekking ― with plenty of easy to moderate walking and sea kayaking in between.

Rediscover Your Love of Travel with These Adventure Tours

October 1st, 2014 by Matt

Recently I was talking to an otherwise enthusiastic world traveler who was experiencing what I’ll call, “Bucket List Fatigue.” She’d brainstormed all of her dream destinations and had been energetically checking them off: the Eiffel Tower, the Grand Canyon, the Great Pyramids of Giza. The first trips were filled with wonder and joy, but as she made her way down the list, she was starting to feel burned out. Her natural love of travel was starting to seem like a chore.

Th Pyramids of Giza, Egypt.

The Great Pyramids of Giza, Egypt.

She said that she imagined that people like me—people who work in the travel industry—must feel that way, too. I admitted that the logistics of travel could get to be a drag (I’ve never met a line that I wanted to stand in). But the trips themselves never did. I then let her in on something I’ve learned over the years. “If you want to rediscover your love of travel, then stop thinking about it in terms of the destination, and start thinking about it in terms of people,” I said.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for having a bucket list if it motivates you to see the wonders of the world. And places like the Grand Canyon, Eiffel Tower, and the Great Pyramids of Giza are all must-sees. But when I think about my favorite travel adventures, they’re all smaller, more intimate experiences. It’s the conversations, stories, jokes, confessions, even awkward silences—it’s those human moments where I’ve connected with a person I never would have otherwise met. Read the rest of this entry »

5 Adventure Travel Destinations that will Change Your Life

September 15th, 2014 by karen cleary

Choosing an adventure travel destination can be daunting. The top destinations for adventure travel offer not only opportunities for physical challenge, but also elements that speak to our humanity: an immersion in nature, and the chance to disconnect from the frenetic pace of modern life and reconnect with our inner spirit.

Whether you are feeling unsettled at work, have personal goals that have evaded you, or just feel like you’ve been in a rut, the best adventure travel destinations offer a chance to slow down, breathe deep, recharge, and change your life.

That said, here are Boundless Journeys’ picks for five adventure travel destinations that will change your life:
Read the rest of this entry »

Introducing Croatia: Dalmatian Islands Hiking & Kayaking

August 12th, 2014 by deborah tobey

Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast has long been a treasured vacation spot for Europeans who crave the natural beauty, food, wine, and history of the Mediterranean, but want to avoid the crowded coasts of Italy, Spain, and France. In the early 90s, civil war in the former Republic of Yugoslavia quieted tourism in the region, but Dalmatia has long since completed its comeback, while still retaining the charm and character of a destination that’s slightly off the beaten path.

Hikes along the coast of Dalmatia offer postcard-worthy views.

Hikes along the coast of Dalmatia offer postcard-worthy views.

Croatia’s geographic and strategic location made the country either the trading partner or the prize of Greek, Byzantine, Slavic, and Venetian empires—to name a few—and everywhere there’s evidence of ancient influence. We begin our Croatia: Dalmatian Islands Hiking & Kayaking tour in the town of Split, home to the massive 3rd-century Palace of Diocletian, the “retirement home” of the Roman emperor. In the village of Ston, we walk along limestone fortifications exceeded in length only by the Great Wall of China. And, in Dubrovnik, we find a pharmacy that’s been open since the Middle Ages. History breathes from the land itself, and archeological remains date prehistoric settlements along the Dalmatian coast as far back as the Paleolithic Period.
Read the rest of this entry »

Dinner is Served! Five Icelandic Dishes for the Fearless Diner

July 7th, 2014 by ninafedrizzi

Iceland is a land of opportunity for the adventurous at heart, and no less so at the dining table. Whether grabbing a quick snack of putrefied shark meat or a hearty meal of boiled sheep’s head and potatoes, Icelanders know how to bring a little excitement in with the dinner bell.

If you’re lucky enough to be heading there with us this summer, be sure to try at least a few of these traditional favorites. Otherwise, mark this menu down on your dining bucket list—if you dare.
Read the rest of this entry »

Boundless Guides Make You Feel at Home, Anywhere in the World

May 9th, 2014 by deborah tobey

What makes a Boundless Journeys guide so spectacular? To begin, our guides live in the region where they are guiding. They may know the chef at that lesser-known, but surprisingly good trattoria, or perhaps they will spot an old friend on the trail who invites you to his home for lunch. When you travel with a Boundless Journeys guide, your experience is that of friend and local adventurer. You are welcomed with a hearty “hello” and a genuine smile, and spontaneity unfolds.

Boundless Journeys Costa Rica Guide, Marco "Tex" Fallas

Boundless Journeys Costa Rica Guide, Marco “Tex” Fallas

Additionally, our guides bring years of life experience to their work. Not only are they knowledgeable and experienced on the trail, but many of them are also art historians, musicians, writers, farmers, researchers, archeologists, photographers, community leaders, and mothers and fathers extraordinaire. I don’t believe we have any professional comics on staff, but you can bet there will be many laughs. Our guides make every journey FUN. It will be hard to believe they are at work as they cajole you into trying a new food, stepping off the zip-line platform, or reaching the summit of a trail.

How do they do it time and time again? There is only one way. They love what they do. Our guides have a passion for their country and for introducing it to others. They have seemingly endless energy and enthusiasm, and by the end of the tour, you will undoubtedly have made a new friend.

But don’t just take it from us. Here’s what some of our guests had to say:
Read the rest of this entry »

Document Your Adventure with These Cool New Gadgets

April 23rd, 2014 by ninafedrizzi

We’re often blown away by the images our guests return with from the trails. Whether photographing elusive mountain gorillas in the Republic of Congo, capturing Iceland’s ancient, blue-hued glaciers, or snapping the view from the top on the Tour du Mont Blanc, shots taken at some of the world’s most remote and scenic corners are an essential part of the Boundless Journeys experience. But standard cameras and smart phones are just one way to document your trip. These new gadgets are pushing the envelope, offering the perfect combination of size, durability, and versatility essential to the adventure traveler.

GoPro Hero 3+: The latest and lightest version of this mobile action video camera—essential headgear for base jumpers, skateboarders, and skiers everywhere—shoots at up to 4K resolution, offers a Bluetooth remote control, and is rugged enough to film the migrating herds on your off-road safari, or bounce along with the rocky terrain on a Peruvian trek.
Read the rest of this entry »

From WS: The Legendary Lionesses of Shumba Camp

March 5th, 2014 by karen cleary

This post originally appeared on February 26, 2014 on Wilderness Safaris blog. It was written by Shumba Camp manager, Ingrid Baas Janssen. Shumba Camp is situated in the center of the Busanga Plains of Zambia, close to permanent water and within easy access of the teeming floodplains. Shumba is known for its large prides of lion that are often seen right next to camp – or even, unusually, in trees. Shumba Camp lies right in the core of the Busanga Prides territory, this coupled with the abundance of lechwe and puku sets the stage for incredible and unique lion sightings and interactions. This camp can be included in a customized safari to Southern Africa; contact karen@BoundlessJourneys.com for more details.

It’s no coincidence that Shumba Camp takes its name from the local vernacular for lion…
The entire Busanga Pride is very comfortable in and around Shumba Camp – on the boardwalks and on the decks of the guest units – so it’s not just one lioness that likes to spend time or raise her cubs in the camp. The current pride consists of three lionesses, three cubs and two male lions. All these lions have been seen on the decks of guest units or on the boardwalk and over the years different lionesses have raised their cubs in and around camp. In 2013 one of the lionesses had three cubs in camp; in 2012 a different lioness had hers here. In 2011, 2010 and 2009 various lionesses had their cubs close to camp or in the staff compound.
Read the rest of this entry »

Testimonials

Botswana Safari"We are home safe and sound.  We continue to bathe in the rich memories of the trip and want to thank you, Karen and all of your people who helped make it such an enjoyable, flawless trip.  It certainly did exceed our expectations and we could not be more satisfied with your efforts and those of the wonderful people at Wilderness Safaris.  It was truly a lifetime experience we will treasure always. "
- Howard Fosler, Botswana Private Adventure

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