For those of you acquainted with someone off to The Maldives, or perhaps The Caribbean rise above your envious stares this new National Geographic article that lists 25 brand-new adventures the wolf-tracking in Slovakia to rafting a forbidden river in Bhutan.
While 2009 saw the return of the camper-van, design tents and resurge in Brazilian roadtrips - 2010 is all about pastures new. Swide takes a peek at what the professional travellers, National Geographic are recommending for the year ahead.
A new lodge in Laos’ hill country, north of Luang Prabang, is ushering in a fresh era of tourism. Reachable via the Ou River, Muang La Resort and its fleet of powerboats have transformed what was once a multiday water taxi ride to the region into a five-hour cruise.
The Bitterroot Mountains straddling the Montana-Idaho border are loaded with lakes, hot springs, wildlife (lynx, bald eagles, wolves), and a rich history (Native Americans, fur traders, and Lewis and Clark all came through here). On ROW’s new Bitterroots Multisport trip, you can cycle the 50-mile Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes along the old Milwaukee Railroad line.
Thirteen years ago, British biologist Robin Rigg ventured into Slovakia’s Carpathian Mountains to study wolves, and he never left. Now Rigg is looking to the Carpathians’ Tatra Range, whose 8,000-foot-plus peaks are host to what is becoming a serious hunting problem. “Hunters tend to greatly exaggerate the numbers of wolves and lynx,” says Rigg, “which leads to unjustified persecution.” His plan is to take stock of the wildlife with the help of Biosphere Expeditions, which will send travelers to Rigg’s outpost for the first time this winter.
Today, intrepid hikers are starting to explore the region’s signature draw, Hornstrandir Nature Reserve; next summer, Explorers’ Corner will become the sole outfitter to approach it just as the Vikings did - by sea.
What makes the Sierra High Route so unique,” says Ian Elman, owner of Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides, “is that it’s not a trail, it’s a concept.” That concept- invented in the 1970s by a guy named Steve Roper, who wrote The Sierra High Route: Traversing Timberline Country - is to trace the highest points across the Sierra while staying above tree line and away from other hikers. The thing is, it’s exceedingly difficult to execute this concept on your own: Only a handful of people complete it each year. Lucky for you, Andrew Skurka will lead the inaugural Sierra High Route outfitted crossing for Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides in 2010.
"Hovenweep National Monument is one of the more remote areas left in the country,” says Western Spirit Cycling president Ashley Korenblat. This spring Korenblat’s Moab-based outfit will lead the first commercial biking trip to the monument, which lies some 70 miles east of Cortez, Colorado, at the end of a circuitous country road.
Kumuka Worldwide, whose first-of-its-kind sailing trip plunges into the coral-filled Indian Ocean while hitting a cluster of little-visited islets just off the main island. Starting on Nosy Be, the largest of Madagascar’s outer islands, you’ll travel by dhow - the traditional sailboat used by African and Arabian traders for millennia - from one deserted beach to the next, camping on white sand by night, and kayaking, snorkeling, and fishing by day.
To read more from the 25 expeditions click here.
Source & Photo credits: National Geographic Magazine