This adventure vacations travel guide is not just for those who are merely seeking an adrenaline hit on vacation, but also for those simply seeking some fun. Be it on the water, climbing mountains, close to home or on the other side of the world. Adventure is for everyone – whether you want to climb mountains, sail the seven seas or cycle every European byway and highway.
Short break adventure vacations guide
Booking a short break adventure vacation is a whole different animal to a big vacation bonanza. Most people want a quick hit of adrenalin but without too much hassle. The test of a top notch shortie is when you come home feeling as if you have been away for a fortnight. When you get back from sea kayaking in Croatia or coasteering in Wales and can still taste the salt on your lips back in the office on Monday morning.
Splashing out on a Friday night after work – that's what a short break sea kayaking off Croatia's Dalmation coast is all about.
Or you can recall the motion memory of being pulled through the snow at speed on a husky sled as you start your commute to work. And when that sprig of Provence lavender fills the air with just enough perfume to remind you how good for you it really was to briefly swap banal for beauty. This short break adventure vacations travel guide aims to jolt you out of the quotidian and quench your thirst for quick thrills.
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What to do on a short break adventure
A wet weekend
If getting in the water is your way of shaking off stress, then there are wonderful short breaks out there to awaken the senses. Croatia is close and simply made for sailing, with the Elaphiti Islands just off Dubrovnik. As the sea isn’t tidal, you can cover good distances in short periods of time. Kayaking is slower, but there is nothing like paddling up to the prettiest of beaches on uninhabited islands. Or just staying on one, such as Lopud, and kayaking out to different coves every day. Paddling in Pembrokeshire might not be as warm, but it is way up there in the prettiness stakes and, given that it is the home of coasteering, it certainly is always exhilarating.
Freezing but funWinter short breaks are about so much more than downhill skiing. For a quick adrenalin hit in the snow, you can go snowshoeing and husky sledding in Finland or Norway while taking the opportunity to see the Northern Lights illuminating these perfect white landscapes. Iceland also fulfils all sense of winter wanderlust, with snow coming as early as September and hanging around as late as May. And if you want some winter wildlife, then wolf tracking in remote parts of Sweden while snowshoeing your way across frozen lakes is a pretty cool way to take a digital detox.
A quick high
For some people, it is only the mountains and hills that will lift them out of the stresses and strains of daily life. It’s an elevation thing. Something about gaining perspective from up on high, as all those trivial problems pale into insignificance. There are some wonderful short break hiking vacations out there where everything is organised for you. You have a mountain leader, your bags are transported for you, food awaits and all you have to do is pack your boots, layers, water bottle and go. And in a few days, it is amazing how much of the Brecon Beacons, the mountains along Turkey’s Lycian Way, the Alps or even Morocco’s Atlas mountains you can cover.
More about Short adventure tours
Be it Lapland, the Lycian Way or Croatia’s Lopud Island, adventure shorties all have great locations.
Welcome to the Saint Anna archipelago, wild and pristine, the most renowned destination for sea kayaking in Sweden.
Take to the water around Croatia’s islands for a few days and you’ll be so chilled it’ll feel like a few weeks.
The beast, the giant, call it what you will; the ascent of Mont Ventoux has been firmly cemented in cycling lore.
From Lapland to the High Atlas, our top 10 active short breaks will feed your sense of adventure without eating up your annual leave.