20 Mind-Blowing Escapes You Need to Add to Your Travel List

Thrill-seekers are always up for an adrenaline-inducing adventure.

Thrill-seekers are always up for an adrenaline-inducing adventure. Many travelers plan their getaways months in advance. Some may want to consider newly accessible destinations, such as Cuba and Iran, or secret gems, such as Sri Lanka and Montenegro.
Visit unique attractions; see majestic landscapes, vibrant cities and iconic landmarks; or go on an overnight excursion to surf incredible waves and test your physical limits. The destinations on the list vary from the kinds of exploits they offer to the size of budget they need to fit.

Some of the escapes are secluded islands. Big and small isles surrounded by water keep visitors enchanted with perfect weather, water sports quests, and lots of sunshine. Time tends to move slower there, making for an ideal escape from a big city’s hectic everyday life.

[post_ads]Next thing you know, you are walking out the door to embrace the warmth somewhere in the Caribbean, South America or even south of Illinois with summer-like temperatures in February. Perhaps in an off the beaten path locale?

20 Mind-Blowing Escapes You Need to Add to Your Travel List

Visit unique attractions; see majestic landscapes, vibrant cities and iconic landmarks; or go on an overnight excursion to surf incredible waves and test your physical limits. The destinations on the list vary from the kinds of exploits they offer to the size of budget they need to fit.

Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Easily one of the most famous attractions in all of Iceland, the baby blue waters of the Blue Lagoon hover between 98 and 104 degrees. People from near and far flock there for the water’s purported therapeutic benefits on the skin. The combination of silica, algae and minerals help exfoliate and reduce inflammation so well that there’s actually a line of skin care products made from the water. Open year-round, the site tends to get busy, so the staff recommends visiting in the late afternoon if possible.

The Galapagos Islands

This is a place you should visit soon before you don’t get another chance. People with a taste for adventure go on trips that include daily excursions led by certified naturalists and optional snorkel, kayak and hiking tours. Tourists are brought face-to-face with exotic wildlife via daily excursions through the archipelago’s diverse islands. Animals wander freely and almost fearlessly throughout the Galapagos. Swim with sea turtles, sun bathe with sea lions and get face-to-face with the famous blue-footed booby.

Svalbard Archipelago, Norway

The islands are called “the realm of the polar bear,” according to Visit Norway. They are located in the Arctic Ocean, halfway between Norway and the North Pole. Adventurers will find unspoiled wilderness, unique wildlife, charming old mining towns, and thousands of polar bears. Just over 3,000 people live in Svalbard.


Don’t go trekking in the Himalaya; save that for the winter. Go on a wildlife safari in the southern part of the country instead and bathe with elephants in the village of Sauraha. Go ballooning above the Kathmandu Valley or bungee jumping off a 500-foot suspension bridge snuggled within the mountains, high above the river. Canoeing and rock climbing are other popular summer adventures in Nepal.

Holbox Island, Yucatan Peninsula

The island is about 25 miles long and is home to many stunning beaches, all of which can be described as secluded. You have to take a ferry or a water taxi to get you to the isle. If you happen to vacation in Cancun, getting to the island will take at least three hours. The streets are actually sand and you will need a golf cart to drive around; or you can walk.

Taipei, Taiwan

Taiwan has become Asia’s next big food destination. Forget politics and enjoy the bustling city to the fullest. See the world’s tallest building (from 2004 until 2010) and enjoy the biggest collection of Chinese art. Explore incense - veiled temples dating back to dynastic times, according to Taiwan.net. Taipei has dozens of world-class restaurants. Just a few minutes from the heart of the city you can soak away the cares of the world in mineral-rich hot springs nestled in the lush mountain foothills ringing the Taipei Basin.

Socotra Island, Yemen

Yemen is on the list of places that can't visit you but this does not really apply to the remote island with plants that are up to 20 million years old. The island, often called “the most alien-looking place on Earth,” is so isolated that more than a third of its plant life does not exist anywhere else. The dragon trees are on some of the most famous photos of the place.


The tourism industry has been up and coming but some places remain overlooked, hence are much cheaper. Visit the historic gem of Santa Marta, the first Spanish settlement in Colombia and the oldest surviving city in the country. Aside from history, you get to enjoy beautiful beaches, amazing reefs for unforgettable snorkeling and a bustling nightlife. The coastal fishing city of Cartagena will delight you with history, adventure and of course, warmth, and great prices.

Bernese Oberland, Switzerland

This is one of the best ski resorts in the world. Bernese Oberland resort has 4,000-meter peaks, 255 ski lifts and some of the most stunning scenery in the Bernese Alps. It is surrounded by over 800 lakes and beautiful mountains. Bernese Oberland is the venue for Switzerland’s World Cup races. They offer cross-country runs, great winter hiking and snowshoe trails. You can also enjoy the area in the summer.

Detian Waterfall, bordering China and Vietnam

This is a waterfall you absolutely must see at least once in your life. It is the largest transnational waterfall in Asia and the fourth largest transnational waterfall in the world, according to China Highlights. In the spring, the fiery-red kapoks peculiar to the south scatter around the waterfall and make it more beautiful. The Detian waterfall, divided into three layers, has the largest water flow in the summer. You’ll find diversified landscape with lakes, snowcapped mountains, little mountain villages, cogwheel trains, and hiking trails.


Visit Mongolia for a great deal of history, landmarks and fun. Check out the Gorkhi-Terelj National Park, and visit the Zaisan Memorial. For adventure, go on a Mongolia travel tour. Try the Wild Mongolia trip, hike to the peak of a volcano, visit Khovsgol Lake, explore the palaces, watch cultural performances and relax Tsenkher’s hot springs. The country is an off-the-grid destination you should definitely visit soon. Tourism is still in its infancy. It’s only a matter of time before the world catches on.

Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

This is Tanzania’s oldest national park. It’s famous for its annual wildebeest migration. It’s also one of the few places in Africa where the amount of lions is not declining. The best time to see them is between December and March. Take a safari style tour to view the lions. The park and Mt. Kilimanjaro make Tanzania one of the most visited countries in Africa.

Whitehaven Beach, Australia

Only accessible by boat or helicopter, Whitehaven Beach is surely one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. The entire island is a natural preserve, featuring some of the purest sand on earth, crystal clear waters and access to the Great Barrier Reef. There are no restaurants, bars or hotels, and there are strict visitation limits. You have to register with a tour guide in order to be allowed to visit.


The remote island country of Madagascar is home to spectacular biodiversity—many of the plant and animal species that live there can’t be found anywhere else on the planet. Clearly a dream destination for nature lovers and adventurers, a trip to Madagascar doesn’t come cheap or easy. The roads on the island are in poor shape, so you’d better embrace off-road driving or be prepared to hire a boat.

La Sagesse Bay, Grenada

This is one of the most secluded beaches on Earth. The bay is a mere 10.5 miles from the bustling, tourist-packed beach resorts of Grand Anse. It’s pretty much your own desolate section of paradise. The bay is not accessible by car so most beach-goers looking to access La Sagesse stay in the tiny 12-room hotel and enjoy clear shallow waters and hiking trails - which are even less crowded - of La Sagesse’s nature center.

Concordia, Pakistan

Concordia is at the heart of Karakoram Range and the center of a complex of some of the world’s highest peaks and many of its largest glaciers, according to Summit Post. The Concordia, all around are giant ice clad mountains of more than 26,000 feet. The area is often referred to as “the mountaineer’s paradise.”


Visit this small country before the word gets out about what a wonderful place it is. After years of tumultuous politics, most of the region has come back stronger and more stunning than ever. A lot of people don’t even know that Montenegro, which is often referred to as the pearl of the Mediterranean, has been independent since 2006. Go to Kotor in Montenegro for a true untouched retreat and to Belgrade, the capital of neighboring Serbia, for a mixture of history, modern hipster bars, cafes, and fascinating museums.


Given that it’s home to more than 90 percent of the earth’s ice, life in Antarctica is difficult, at best. It’s cold—Antarctica holds the record for lowest recorded temperature (-128.56 F) on Earth; it’s dry—it’s the largest dessert on earth; it’s gusty (winds can reach more than 200 mph); and it’s inaccessible—the continent was first reached by a human in 1911 when Roald Amundsen landed at the South Pole. Visiting is still possible, and you should do it before more major ices shelves along the Antarctic Peninsula break apart even more.


Trekking Patagonia is a thrilling adventure and one reason why you should visit South America. The subject of many stunning photographs and some of the best hikes through ever-changing landscapes of steep peaks, the Torres del Paine National Park attracts roughly 150,000 visitors to its remote wilderness each year. It may be a tough trip, but this park offers some of the most beautiful natural scenery in the world. Patagonia is also a great destination for standup paddle boarding with its turquoise lakes and rivers.

Milford Sound, New Zealand

Mildford Sound offers a long list of adventurous activities to embark on. Visit Fiordland National Park to see incredible ice-carved fiords, lakes, rugged mountain tops, and valleys; go hiking on a diverse terrain and explore their incredible wilderness; paddle to places you can only see by kayak; and navigate your way through the beautiful water—make sure to look out for penguins, dolphins, whales and waterfalls.
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Travel Magazine: 20 Mind-Blowing Escapes You Need to Add to Your Travel List
20 Mind-Blowing Escapes You Need to Add to Your Travel List
Thrill-seekers are always up for an adrenaline-inducing adventure.
Travel Magazine
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