Like Adventure Holidays? Then Check Out the World’s Most Deadly Vacations

Adrenaline junkies unite. Renew your passport and get your travel insurance; extreme holidays are back in vogue. No, not an adventure holiday where you might spend an afternoon cycling or go kayaking — these are extreme holidays where the risk is high and a scar as a souvenir is pretty much a given.

Here are six beautiful, but deadly vacations.

1. The Running of the Bulls in Spain

Or, The Running Away as Fast as You Can From the Bulls in Spain. This annual event is held in Pamplona. Each year thousands of people from Spain and around the world gather to get in the way of, and then avoid, the angry horns of a herd of bulls. Casualties are plenty but the experience will never be forgotten.

2. White Water Rafting in Africa

White water rafting doesn’t really sound that dangerous on its own. Maybe a little risky. But on the beautiful Zambezi River, close to Victoria Falls, about 30 people die a year while undertaking this adventure. How? Well, they are eaten by crocodiles, mostly.

3. Cycle the El Camino de la Muerte

A Mecca for cyclists, this track winds its way through the Andes, offering spectacular views and breathtaking drops. Camino de la Muerte translates as “the road of death.” There are more fatalities per mile on this steep, muddy, and often narrow road than any other in the world.

4. Trekking The Himalayas

Whether your target is the top of Everest or a more achievable teahouse trek through lower-lying towns and villages, Nepal offers some of the most beautiful and unspoiled treks in the world. While the popular trip to the Everest Base Camp is relatively safe and well populated with travelers and villages, it is at the peaks beyond that many lives are lost each year. For every ten successful ascents, there is one death. Once at the peak, you have a one in 20 chance of making it down alive.

5. The Kokoda Trail

Many adventure travelers choose to take this pilgrimage. Every year deaths are reported on the trail. The 100-kilometer track is said to be the equivalent of walking three quarters of the way up Mount Everest. Many approach the trail without the right preparation, underestimating the conditions, or not preparing physically beforehand.

6. African Safari

Every year thousands of people travel to the African continent to see the big five: lions, leopards, elephants, buffaloes, and rhinos. If you are checking out the lions from the comfort of a five-star resort or an air-conditioned bus you’ll likely be safe, but there are still fatalities on safari every year. Mostly these are led by small tour groups and local guides into wild areas.

People choose adventure vacations for many reasons. The lure of the unknown, the spike of adrenaline that comes from experiencing the unexpected, can be very seductive. Sometimes when we are most at risk is when we feel most alive.

Danger takes many forms. The reasons vary, from falls to illness, natural disasters, political coups, and accidents. Every vacation involves some form of risk. Along the way there are many turns when things go wrong. When you are hundreds of miles from home, sometimes the simplest problems are much more difficult to fix. Preparation, the right amount of travel health insurance and a cautious attitude can go a long way toward making your holiday a safer and more enjoyable one, no matter how safe or dangerous the locale.

5 U.S. Destinations for Outdoor Fun in 2016

Are you hoping to plan a getaway that will give you the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors, especially since you’ve been chained to your desk at work every day for the last few months? Then continue reading because below is a list of five of the most exciting U.S. destinations for outdoor fun, whether you’re hoping to catch some excitement on a river, you prefer to climb mountains, or you want to hike through deep forests.

Siskiyou Mountains in Oregon

The Siskiyou Mountains are a coastal range that runs from California into Oregon, but for a truly unforgettable and unique vacation experience, stick to the Oregon side, where you will find Out ‘n About Treesort, a place where you can book a tree house of your very own. There are 15 tree houses in total to choose from, but no matter which one you choose, you will seriously be living in the trees. And during the day, you can head out and explore the forest to see what you find.

West Virginia

West Virginia is known for its great white water rafting opportunities, so if you are hoping to get your adrenaline pumping, head out there for some fun. The most well known spot for white water rafting in the state is the Gauley River, but if you are looking for a river that’s more suited to beginners, check out New River instead, which is definitely more appropriate for youngsters as well.

Yosemite National Park

No list of great outdoor destinations would be complete without mentioning the beautiful and beloved Yosemite National Park, which is located in California. The giant sequoias are truly ancient trees that you definitely will not want to miss, but there are also breathtaking waterfalls, lakes, fields, and wildlife to check out as well.

Glacier National Park

Located in Montana, Glacier National Park is another hugely popular vacation destination for those who love to spend time in the great outdoors, and it is an ideal destination for families with children of all ages. To give you an idea of the vastness of the park, there are 175 mountains, 200 lakes, 40 glaciers, and one million acres to explore. You can check out the area during the warmer seasons of the year, when you can see local wildlife and enjoy the incredible views by hiking, horseback riding, biking, or boating your way through. Or you can partake in winter fun while skiing down the slopes or enjoying cross-country skiing if that’s what suits your fancy. No matter when you decide to visit or what you decide to do, though, this is definitely an unforgettable place.

Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells, located in Wisconsin, is a great destination throughout the entire year. You can enjoy the scenic lakes, where fishing is popular, check out the many water parks in the area, or ski and enjoy the deep snow on the mountains during the winter. You can also partake in kayaking, rock climbing, hiking, and more, all while enjoying the natural splendor of the area.

Beer Lover Amin Khoury’s Guide to 5 Awesome Bend Breweries

Portlanders have adopted the braggadocious nickname “Beervana” to describe their fair city, supposedly on account of its plethora of craft breweries. While it’s certainly true that Portland has more than its fair share of homegrown beer luminaries, Oregon’s largest city actually isn’t the state’s craft beer capital. At least, not when you take into account brewery accessibility for average residents and visitors.

That distinction goes to Bend, Oregon. Yeah, it goes to MY city. So when I ask my visiting out-of-town friends what they’d like to do when they’re here, they almost always say, “Well Amin Khoury, my good friend, how about heading to town for some IPAs?” (Okay, I’m paraphrasing just a bit there.)

But what I’m not making up is this: According to the Bend Visitor Center, the centrally located sports mecca has one functioning brewery for every 4,500 men, women and children who call it home. That’s the densest craft brewery concentration of any city in Oregon, and behind just a handful of mostly Western cities for densest U.S. beer market overall.

Thirsty Bend visitors have no shortage of high-quality craft beer options. But these five breweries are particularly worth one’s while. Next time you’re in beautiful Bend, Oregon, check out these sudsy institutions.

1. Cascade Lakes Brewing Company

Cascade Lakes Brewing Company got its start in a dingy industrial building at the nearby Redmond airport back in 1994. With a bustling taproom near the heart of Bend, it’s now one of Central Oregon’s most popular breweries. Pitcher deals make Cascade Lakes one of Bend’s group-friendliest breweries, and an expansive games area practically begs you to take the kids — who eat free on Sundays, FYI.

2. Bend Brewing Company

Bend Brewing Company is an award-winning (10-plus since 2010, including several coveted Great American Beer Festival takes) brewery that just celebrated its 20th anniversary. Come for a pint of High Desert Hefeweizen or Pinnacle Porter, stay for the tasty apps, and be sure to pull up a chair on what’s arguably Bend’s best patio — weather permitting, of course!

3. Silver Moon Brewing

Silver Moon Brewing is the brewery for live music in Bend. Stop by during the week for a peek at hot local acts, or peek ahead at the event schedule to see when national acts plan on stopping through. IPAs, IPLs and Imperial Reds rule the roost here, but there are plenty of cold-season dark beers in the extended rotation too.

4. Boneyard Brewery

Boneyard Beer sounds edgy, and it is. According to the owners, the inspiration for the place’s unusual name comes from the source of its equipment — the “boneyard,” i.e. the vast and ever-expanding universe of secondhand brewing equipment thrown off by defunct and expanding breweries. In an eco-friendly town, nothing sells like repurposed, reclaimed production wares.

And the beer? It’s amazing. Boneyard specializes in high-gravity brews like Notorious, a well-balanced creation that tips the scales at 11.5% ABV, but cautious types can fall back on Bone Light (4% ABV) and Bone-a-Fide (5.5% ABV). The tasting room is open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week.

5. Deschutes Brewery

Save the best for last? That’s debatable. Definitely the biggest, though.
Deschutes Brewery is a national powerhouse. According to the Brewers’ Association, it’s the seventh-largest U.S. craft brewery by production volume. Its regular-run beers are available on liquor shelves and in bars coast-to-coast. And it’s basically a household name among in-the-know drinkers.

In Bend, though, Deschutes is just another member of the craft beer gang. Check out the brewery’s Bend Public House, where the first-ever Deschutes beers came gushing out of the tap back in the late 1980s, and the Bend Tasting Room, where new brews make their debuts. The Tasting Room opens at 8 a.m. (!) on weekdays.
What’s your favorite Bend brewery?

 

 

 

Image attribution – Lucas Jans, cropped and sized, Creative Commons license