Let’s face it, modern life can be pretty hectic and stressful. One of the best ways for people to reduce this stress and recharge their batteries is to get away on holiday. While many people choose a traditional city break or a week away in the sun to relax, some of us prefer something a little more unique and unusual. Here is a list of 15 of the most incredible holidays with a difference. If you’re bored of the idea of simply lying on a beach for a week and want something to really get your pulse racing, this list will provide you with the inspiration you need.
Husky sledding in Alaska
If spending a week getting back in touch with nature in one of the most stunning locations in the world, sounds like your idea of heaven, then a husky sledding holiday in Alaska should be top of the list of your next trip away. The incredible journey lasts 7 nights and takes you across the frozen winter plains of southern Alaska, taking in the incredible wildlife, stunning mountains, frozen lakes and rivers of this winter wonderland. As well as experiencing the incredible thrill of husky sledding, guests also have the chance to explore the countryside on snowmobiles and visit the historical gold-mining town of Girdwood.
Go Inside a Volcano in Iceland
If you’re looking for a truly unique holiday experience, then Iceland should be your next port of call. Visitors have the opportunity to explore the country’s famous Thrihnukagigur volcano in all its glory. Guests first visit the Silfra fissure; a water-filled crack in the earth’s crust, that was formed along the meeting place of the European and American tectonic plate. The fissure offers the opportunity to snorkel in some of the clearest water on earth, with visibility often reaching over 100m deep. If that wasn’t enough, visitors then have the chance to enter the giant magma chamber of the dormant volcano itself. A newly opened lift allows visitors to plunge 120m below the earth’s service for a once in a lifetime experience inside one of earth’s most stunning natural wonders.
Snake Catching in India
If you’re bored of the same old holidays and want a trip where you can make a real difference, why not try snake catching in India? Guests get to stay at the Vivanta by Taj Fisherman’s Cove, an old Dutch fort that overlooks the Bay of Bengal, and have the chance to accompany Irula tribesmen on their daily routine of catching snakes in the surrounding countryside. Once a snake has been caught, the tribesmen expertly extract poison from their fangs, before releasing the reptiles back into the wild, unharmed. This poison is then used to make medicine for the local community, making this an equally unique and rewarding holiday.
Teach English to Young Buddhist Monks
Another holiday that is both rewarding and unique is a trip to Luange Prabang, Laos, to teach English to young buddhist monks. Visitors get to spend two weeks in the beautiful ancient city of Luange Prabang and can volunteer at the numerous buddhist monasteries and temples. Guests not only get to teach English to the novice monks but can also learn about the local food and culture of the area, as well as studying Laos history. The city is located by the crossing of the Nam Khan and Mekong rivers and provides a stunning backdrop to relax and unwind after a rewarding day’s work.
Train to Be a Warrior in Mongolia
If modern life feels a little dull and boring, a holiday learning ancient warrior arts should get your pulse beating again. Responsible Travel offer their customers the chance to spend 9 days in Mongolia learning how to fight and live like a warrior under the Great Khan. Guests will not only spend their nights in nomadic tents but will use their days to master the 13th century battle skills of these ancient warriors. Activities include bow and arrow making, learning how to shoot from horseback, creating quick campfires, as well as mastering the art of field cooking. This will be one holiday you definitely won’t forget in a hurry!
Climb Mount Kilimanjaro
The thought of spending a holiday climbing a mountain might seem a little too daunting for some, but Mount Kilimanjaro is not just any mountain. The great fact about Kilimanjaro is you do not need to be a technical climber to get to the summit, so just about anyone who is moderately fit can complete the climb. The mountain sits just 3 degrees below the equator in Tanzania but actually retains a snow-capped peak all year round. The location and height of Kilimanjaro means that climbers experience a huge contrast in terrain on their journey to the summit. Lush rainforests at the bottom of the mountain give way to alpine forests, before turning into a high-altitude desert and finally transforming into the icecapped peak. Kilimanjaro is a holiday experience you will never forget.
Heli Surfing in New Zealand
New Zealand is famous for its love of extreme sports and provides the perfect location for a heli surfing holiday. Just like on the film Point Break,a heli surfing holiday is all about searching for that perfect wave. But rather than spending hour upon hour, driving from beach to beach and coast to coast, heli surfing lets you quickly and stylishly chase the perfect conditions. Your very own private helicopter will transport you across New Zealand’s two islands and four coasts in search of the perfect break. If you’re an experienced surfer or have always wanted to give the sport a try, heli surfing is the ultimate way to experience the extreme sport in one of the most beautiful locations on earth.
Learn about the Way of the Ninja in Japan
The way of the ninja (or shinobi) is one of the most ancient disciplines in the world and studying the fine art provides a fascinating and breathtaking way to spend a holiday in Japan. Visitors start their adventure in the town of Kyoto, where they can learn the ancient skills of Japanese archery and experience the famous sword dance. The journey then moves onto the capital city of Tokyo, where visitors have the chance to receive martial art lessons from an expert sensei before exploring the incredible sights of the capital. If you want a holiday with a difference, look no further.
Go on Safari in Namibia
If you’re looking for a truly exotic holiday destination that hasn’t been overrun by tourists, then Namibia should be your very next trip. This stunning country is famous for its breathtaking sand dunes and incredible wildlife. A safari holiday in Namibia will see you camping under the stars in the desert and waking up to astonishing sunrises. Some of the wildlife you can expect to see during your trip includes cheetahs, elephants, rhinos and even fur seals. If you’re bored of the same old holidays, Namibia is bound to offer you something new.
Go Buggy Riding and Sandboarding in a Peruvian Oasis
If you thought that a desert oasis was only a place that existed in movies and novels, you’ve obviously never been to Huacachina. This tiny Peruvian town is located in the middle of the dry desert and is built around a small, natural lake. The town is located in the southwestern Ica region of Peru and is a popular destination for tourists. The desert location allows visitors to try out sand buggying on the large, natural dunes and the relatively new craze of ‘sandboarding’, basically snowboarding on sand. After a hard day on the dunes, visitors can sit back and relax by the lake or numerous hotel pools.
Explore a Salt Mine in Romania
If the open air and wide expanses of countryside aren’t your idea of a fun holiday, how about trying a trip to an underground salt mine in Romania? Salina Turda is located in Transylvania and has been a popular tourist destination since the early 1990’s. The salt mine dates all the way back to the middle ages and contains four separate mines, long tunnels covered in salt and even an underground lake. Business Insider even ranked the historic salt mine as the ‘most beautiful underground place in the world.’ Salina Turda has become such a popular tourist destination that a merry-go-round and amphitheater have now been installed.
Celebrate The Festival of Lights in Thailand
If you’ve always wanted to experience the Eastern culture of Thailand, while participating in one of the most spectacular festivals in the world, then a trip to celebrate Loy Krathong is a must. The package last 14 days and starts in the vibrant city of Bangkok, where guests get to visit the ancient temples and markets of the capital city. The trip then moves on to the ancient city of Ayutthaya, before a trek up a mountain in Isaan and finishes with the Festival of Lights in Chiang Mai. The festival is celebrated throughout Southwestern Thai cultures and sees the tradition of lit baskets being floated along a river and the incredible sight of thousands of lanterns being released into the night sky.
Watch the Northern Lights in Iceland
The Northern Lights are one of the most beautiful natural phenomena on the planet and one of the best places to see this breathtaking display of mother nature is in Iceland. Iceland has recently seen a large rise in tourism and it’s easy to see why. This beautiful country is not only a haven for outdoor adventurers, it is also home to some of the most luxurious thermal springs and lakes in the world. When you also consider that the capital city of Reykjavik is one of the most cultural and lively in Europe, you realise that Iceland offers far more than just ice and snow. An evening watching of the Northern Lights, surrounded by snow-capped mountains is an experience you will never forget.
Experience La Tomatina in Spain
La Tomatina isn’t the only festival on this list but it is certainly one of the most unique. The annual celebration in Valencia, Spain, takes place on the last Wednesday in August and sees local residents throw huge amounts of tomatoes at each other, all in the name of fun. The festival dates back to 1945 and has been slowly increasing in size each year. The ‘food fight’ lasts one hour and uses around 150,000 tomatoes that are grown locally, specifically for the festival. Taking part in La Tomatina is an experience that few forget and is a great way to spend the week long festivities of Buñol.
Go Gorilla and Chimp Trekking in Rwanda
If you’ve ever dreamed of getting a first hand view of chimps and gorillas in their natural habitat, a trekking holiday in Rwanda will make those dreams a reality. The trip sees you spend 3 days in the Volcanoes National Park, where you’ll have the chance to see both golden monkeys and gorillas living in the wild. The journey takes you to Nyungwe Forest Lodge, where you’ll be for 3 more days trekking to see the local chimpanzee population. There may not be beaches and bars but spending time with these incredible animals will provide you with a truly unique holiday experience you’ll never forget.