For many, holidays are more than just a time to relax – they’re a time to explore and discover new landscapes and experiences.
For intrepid explorers looking for their next challenge, we’ve put together this list of five fantastic holiday hotspots that have the allure of natural beauty and varied wildlife. All you need to do is check your backpacker travel insurance is up-to-date with reputable firms like Allianz Global Assistance and pick where to go.
It may have received more than its fair share of attention over the years but you really cannot deny the natural beauty of the Lakes. The quintessential English destination, intrepid explorers should stay clear of the well-travelled routes such as those surrounding Lake Windemere and head off the beaten track for a more hands-on experience.
As the largest National Park in England there are 885 square miles to explore, in which there are 26 miles of coastlines and estuaries and more than 200 fell tops. Scafell Pike is the probably the most well-known as the largest, standing 3,210ft tall, but there are plenty of others to get your teeth into.
A country packed full of diverse landscapes, our personal favourite from South Africa is the area surrounding Table Mountain. Even climbing the foothills will bring you into contact with a variety of wildlife and climbing to the summit is an exhilarating experience, especially if combined with an overnight camping expedition.
With a whopping 2,100,000 square miles of rainforest, it is hardly surprising the Amazon made our list of top natural holiday hotspots. Representing more than half of the world’s remaining rainforests, any trip here will be truly spectacular and give you the opportunity to explore an area that boosts unparalleled diversity when it comes to plant and animal species. According to estimates , there are 2.5 million species of insect in the rainforest with around 2,000 birds and mammals and tens of thousands of plants.
Home to the Niagara Falls, this is another obvious inclusion for our list. Actually a collection of three waterfalls, Niagara Falls boasts the highest flow rate for waterfalls in the entire world. Whilst many people are aware of its many accolades, something which continues to surprise is the green colour of the water. This is caused by dissolved salts which are generated by natural erosion which occurs at the falls.
Our final entry is a special one for bird-watchers with Cost Rica known as an unbeatable destination. As it contains a larger number of the different life zones found on this planet – which range from lower Sonoran (low, hot desert) to Arctic-Alpine (alpine meadows or tundra) and were developed as a concept by C Hart Merriam – there are plenty of varied eco-systems for birds to thrive in. You can take official bird-watching tours to get the most value from your trip but the cloud forests of Savegre are our favourite.
Photos via Flicker Creative Commons