As we all head back to work after the holidays, it’s time to get your planning ‘hats’ on and think about one of those classic and iconic adventures for next year. As life gets busier, time away where you can fully ‘unplug’ and recharge yourself becomes far more important. Here are our top tips for some epic adventures for you and your friends and family, no matter whether you are a whitewater enthusiast, or embarking on your first rafting adventure.
2. The Watut River, Papua New Guinea: In a world where the word ‘adventure’ is highly over-used, this trip is the real deal. The trip starts and finishes in Cairns, Australia where we get to explore and train on the technical Tully River, coursing through the North Queensland rainforest. Once we get to Papua New Guinea, you realise you are in for a ‘real’ adventure into the heartland of this wonderful friendly nation. The Watut River runs through jungle clad valleys with friendly locals waving and beckoning us from the shores. This river offers world class rapids to excite even the most seasoned adventurer. We’ll jump on dug out canoes to cover the flat sections of the river before exploring the white sandy beaches of Kavieng by sea kayak. One of the aspects we love about it, was the lack of other tourists, which made for an amazing experience. This trip operates in September and October.
3. The Tamur River, Nepal: Set in the beautiful East of Nepal, the Tamur is one of the jewels in our crown. We hike for 3 days to reach this river, giving us a wonderful insight into this amazing country. Stop in teahouses, chat to the fascinated young kids walking to school and immerse yourself in the real Nepal. Thats what river trips do. Add to that the spectacular views you’ll experience on the way to the river of Kanchenjunga and Manaslu amongst others, make this a truly unique and unrivalled adventure. And the river, oh yes the river. Get ready for some serious fun. 7 days, 140 rapids with great campsites each and every night. This is a treat for everyone who runs this wonderful river. If you think Nepal is cold, think again. At the same latitude as Florida, you’ll experience sub tropical conditions (except on the hike at night, it can be chilly) Trips operate at Easter and also in late October. We also offer the Karnali river in Nepal. The Tamur is best in late October while the Karnali can be run in early October and April.
4. New Zealand: Few destinations epitomise adventure, a safe place to visit and friendliness, quite like the South Pacific nation of New Zealand. Our aim on this trip is to help you see parts of the country that are unusual, unique and seen by few tourists. Whether it is taking a flight into the spectacular Landsborough River, staying on a high country sheep farm, this trip is loved by our guests. We take in many iconic adventures, such as riding the Shotover jet boat in Queenstown, taking an overnight cruise in the Bay Of Islands, swimming with dolphins, lunch at an award winning vineyard and sea kayaking in Abel Tasman to name just a few. The trip takes in many incredible restaurants and you’ll get to sample many great wines that New Zealand is renowned for. This trip is offered in February and March.
5. Zambezi River, Zambia: If you have yet to embark on this wonderful adventure, don’t delay. World class warm water rapids, stunning beaches, fascinating wildlife, great guides you will love every minute of your vacation. From the moment we take you on your sunset cruise on the first night of your trip and meeting your dedicated, knowledgeable and experienced river crew on the first night, to your helicopter flight back after the final and largest rapid of the trip, our Zambezi Blast trip offers a chance to see this beautiful river at it’s best. Add to that a safari to Botswana after your trip, you will experience a week long adventure that you won’t forget in a hurry. If you prefer a longer time on the river, our Mighty Zambezi adventure gives a Grand Canyon style experience with the added excitement of seeing some hippos on your final day before your helicopter flight back to town. The Zambezi operates between August and October.
6. Sailing in Croatia: Our ‘hottest’ destination in our sailing portfolio, Croatia is a stunning destination featuring the picturesque islands and towns on the Adriatic coast. You’ll get to try your hand at sailing, as we island hop from one spectacular anchorage to the next. You’ll also get to visit the iconic ports of Starigrad and Vis, made famous in Mamma Mia. If you love wonderful cuisine, this could well be the trip for you. We sample beautiful restaurants most nights, including Michelin Star establishments. Enjoy lazy evenings with some ‘apres sail’ drinks and snacks on board, before heading ashore for yet another wonderful meal. Lunches allow us time for a swim and perhaps a SUP paddle in an idylic bay, before we pull up anchor and sail to yet another gorgeous cove. The trip has an optional extension to Montenegro, where you can raft the Tara River and explore the wonderful town of Kotor. These trips are offered in June and July and on other dates by arrangement for a private charter.
7. Morocco: This beautiful and sensory destination is an incredible combination of the cultures of Africa, the Middle East and Europe. This trip offers the perfect adventure for families with children as young as 8 being able to take part in a safe and spectacular setting rafting the Ahansel River, deep in the heart of the Atlas Mountains. This adventure offers adventurers unsure if a longer rafting trip is ideal for them, a chance to dip your toe in the water and experience river life. You’ll travel through spectacular gorges on a river we pioneered more than 25 years ago. The accommodation before and after the river trip is spectacular. Give yourself a few days to explore the intoxicating city of Marrakech, whether it exploring the souqs for the best deal, or taking a scenic Hot Air Balloon ride in the shadow of the Atlas Mountains, Morocco is a destination for all. One of our trips also takes in all of the highlights of the Sahara on our Deserts & Rivers trip. These trips run in March and April.
So there you go. Our picks for cool and hip destinations for 2018. We look forward to the opportunity to share our passion and love of adventure travel with you in 2018. Make this your year of adventure off the beaten track.
by Hamish McMaster
Hamish McMaster is the Water By Nature owner. He has spent the past 25 years exploring and playing on the world's great rivers. He still loves nothing more than getting out there and sharing adventures.
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