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Amazing Active destinations for adventure vacations

Our hiking trips and adventure vacations take place in some of the most dramatically beautiful and interesting places on the planet. From the proud peaks of Patagonia, the European Alps, the Himalayas and New Zealand to the strange and wonderful world of the Galapagos Islands, the volcanoes and jungles of Ecuador to the colours and culture of Peru – join us for the trip of a lifetime.

South America

Galapagos Islands & Ecuador

South America.jpgThe Galapagos Islands, otherwise known as the Enchanted Isles, are a fascinating place where swimming with seals and tropical fish in the same area is a common occurrence - it's the mixture of warm and cold currents here that create such a rich environment for the wildlife to enjoy. You'll find yourself meeting giant tortoises and learning a great deal about Darwin's theory of evolution as this is where his theories came from. You'll go home with a lifetime of memories. The Galapagos Islands are located 800 kilometres (500 miles) off the coast of Ecuador, often described as a mini-South America due to the fact it is packed with variety, with its volcanos, waterfalls and lush jungle.

Peru

Hiking in Peru is a truly exciting experience, especially on the old Inca routes where the anticipation builds as you make your way through the mountains ever closer to the moment you discover Machu Picchu. This fascinating historical site seemingly comes out of nowhere and you'll ponder with wonder how on earth it was ever uncovered at all. Peru is also home to the stunning city of Cuzco, where cathedrals surround ancient cobbled spares and boutique shops and market stalls line the streets. You can lose yourself for hours in the winding backstreets and spend your day haggling over colourful cloths, shoes and brightly coloured clothing. Your exploring could take you down south to the Amazon jungle where a bounty of treasures awaits - sloths in the trees, night hikes to spot stick insects that are usually only spotted by the finely tuned eyes of your specialist guide, and boat rides out at dusk to watch out for the sneaky cayman. Travelling on to Lake Titicaca to kayak on the highest lake in the world and visit the island people that call it home is an absolute must.

Patagonia (Chile & Argentina)

The mindblowing scenery of Patagonia with its dark granite peaks towering in the sky, icy blue glaciers and wonderful friendly people make it a perfect place to visit. Hiking the W-trek is a challenging yet rewarding experience as incredible views greet you around every corner and sociable refugios with cosy beds wait for you each night. Taking some time to gaze up at the stars on nightfall will provide you with a real treat as you ponder what lies beyond and take in the clear view of the stars in a part of the world where there is very little light pollution.

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Himalayas

Himalayas.jpgGrandeur is a word that almost understates the Nepalese Himalayas. The mountains here are on quite a different scale to anywhere else – these are the true skyscrapers. Nepal rises from virtually sea level at its southern border to 8,848 m (29,029 ft) at the top of Mt. Everest and showcases extraordinary diversity in terms of greenery and wildlife. Here, ancient trade routes will take you deep into the Himalayas, past villages and farms, where you'll stare in wonder up at the world's highest mountains.

Trekking in the Himalayas brings with it dramatic cultures and landscapes in equal measure. Travellers to Nepal are welcomed by the cheerful, open and warm nature of the Nepali people, who are an eclectic mix of 103 ethnic and religious groups ranging from the Buddhist and Sherpa to Tamang and various Hindu castes. There are over 90 languages spoken in Nepal, so to get beneath the surface, a knowledgeable guiding team by your side will make your stay in Nepal's villages a fantastic experience.

Big mountains and an exotic culture mean that trekking in the Himalayas comes with challenges and personal achievement, as well as more than its share of stunning sights. People journey here to test themselves on two of the most iconic treks around, to Everest Base Camp and the sublime Annapurna Sanctuary. Whichever you choose, our seasoned Kiwi trip leaders, alongside our team of knowledgeable local guides and porters, will be there with you every step of the way to inspire, navigate, teach you the local language, interpret the environment, and share the culture with you. Kiwis are amongst the most respected westerners in Nepal, thanks to Sir Edmund Hillary, who is famous for being the first to successfully summit Mt. Everest, but is better known locally for his lifelong dedication to charity work in Nepal.

Whether this is your first trekking trip or you're an old hand, be ready for the Himalayas to inspire you.

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New Zealand

New Zealand.jpgYou won’t find a country that packs more untouched, dramatic and diverse scenery into a small space than New Zealand. The light here is special somehow, making the fiords, glaciers, rainforest, volcanoes, beech forests and rugged coastlines crisper, brighter and more spectacular than you'd ever expect.

You'll find yourself surrounded by some of the best scenery on the planet with few signs of civilisation and no one else around. As an independent nation that lies across the Tasman Sea from Australia, New Zealand is home to only 4.5 million people. About a third of them reside in Auckland city and the rest are spread out around 2 main islands, which together are about half the size of California, leaving vast tracts nearly uninhabited.

Kiwis are welcoming, resourceful and as friendly as they come. They'll charm you with their accent, wave as you pass by on a country road and often stop for a chat. With no snakes, land predators like big cats or bears, or any other nasty critters, New Zealand is a haven for hikers. We have, however, got lambs frolicking in the paddocks, Tui birds calling in the forests and fur seals lazing in the sun on the rocky shores.

An extensive network of hiking and biking trails and almost 1000 backcountry huts mean the options for exploring the wilderness can be overwhelming. Luckily, we've spent years 'tramping' (the Kiwi term for hiking) in the mountains, biking the trails and paddling the calm waters to hand pick the places we go. Some spots, such as the Milford Track, are deservedly world renowned, while other amazing locations are virtually undiscovered. Off the trail, our towns are charming and unique and since Kiwis love their creature comforts, you'll never be too far from a beautifully made cup of coffee. Sweet as!

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Trip Reviews

  •   4.77 out of 5 (from 119 reviews)

    Put this trip on your to-do list!

    Another wonderful trip with Active Adventures! That is what I say about Active Europe’s Tour du Mont Blanc. This was my fourth trip with Active and once again I was impressed with how they do business. Active’s Andy and Nick were excellent representatives for Active Adventures. They are fun, personable, engaging, helpful, and quick to help if there was a problem. The local guides, Jean-Marc, Suzanne, and Jean-Pat, were fun and a joy to be around. Their English language skills were excellent which was great since my French is pathetic! Point to a mountain or an object of curiosity and they could tell you about it. The whole crew worked together great to ensure everyone enjoyed the hiking regardless of pace, weather or skill level. The accommodations were great. Even the one hotel described a “rustic” (meaning it didn’t have en-suite bathrooms) by the guides was delightful. The food was excellent as to be expected and thankfully the hiking burned off the calories allowing for full indulgence at every meal! Oh! The Cheese! The wonderful cheese! Be prepared to sample some of the best cheeses around.
    Now, for the important part, the Tour du Mont Blanc. Definitely something everyone should do in their life. The Alps are magnificent and the towns along the way are beautiful. Active picked great trails to hike that highlighted the beauty of the area. Throw in their choice of towns to explore (especially Annecy’s Old Town), kayaking and mountain biking and it really is an Active Adventure. I highly recommend taking the gondola from Courmayeur, Italy all the way to the Agullie de Midi if the weather is nice (Mother Nature was kind to us with only one day of rain, some fog, and LOTS of clear skies). The view from the gondola over the glaciers is awe-inspiring. Definitely a highlight of the trip. Active doesn’t pay for this but it is well worth the Euros. Active does pay for an Aguille de Midi trip from Chamonix, France but it doesn’t cross the glaciers so I suggest doing it from Italy (weather permitting) and choose the Accro-Park option in Chamonix at the end of the tour. However you decide to do it, the Agullie de Midi is a must do. The views of the Mont Blanc mastiff are spectacular! If you like zip lines and ropes courses the Accro-Park is a great time. If you want a challenge and have the time I recommend doing the Black course (they have four courses; Green, Blue, Red, and Black). Overall, I really enjoyed this trip. If Active didn’t have so many other trips I want to do, I would do this one again!
    Damon Weimer Review Image
    – Washington, United States
    Tour du Mont Blanc, September 2016
  •   4.77 out of 5 (from 119 reviews)

    My Mont Blanc Circuit

    This trip not only provided an upfront tour of one of the most beautiful places in Europe,but with amazing guidance, it pushes you out of your comfort zone both physically and mentally. In addition you make new wonderful friends who encourage you along the way. Almost everyone on our trip had been on multiple Active Adventures before which shows what a wonderful company it is. We started planning our next trip before we flew home.
    Linda Dickens Review Image
    – California, United States
    Tour du Mont Blanc, July 2017
  •   4.77 out of 5 (from 119 reviews)

    Glaciers, Cheese and Cows!

    Great time hiking in the mountains. Couldn't ask for a better time then to sit at the base of glaciers for lunch and relax (even have a nap) while listening to the cow bells.
    Donna Weimer Review Image
    – Washington, United States
    Tour du Mont Blanc, September 2016
  •   4.75 out of 5 (from 55 reviews)

    Stunning

    Stunning is the first word that comes to mind. This was my 4th trip with Active and as usual it was 5 stars across the board. When I first heard about the trip I called Phil to learn more. He told me the Dolomites were the most stunning, picture perfect landscape he's seen and he wasn't exaggerating. I've never said WOW so many times before. Every turn would lead to a breathtaking scene.
    The trip was managed very well as are all Active trips. The guides were great, within days feeling like long time friends. The food and accommodations were excellent, luxury mountain hiking with 5 course meals, electricity and plumbing to be found at every stop!
    The Dolomites are a must visit and I can't think of a better group to do it with than Active Adventures. Looking forward to my next adventure with them.
    Boris Diskin Review Image
    – New Jersey, United States
    Dolomiti, October 2016
  •   4.77 out of 5 (from 119 reviews)

    Most Awesome

    Our Tour du Mont Blanc was nothing short of awesome. Challenging hikes, spectacular mountains, wonderful food and fantastic guides.
    Lark Dunham Review Image
    – Colorado, United States
    Tour du Mont Blanc, July 2017

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Why travel with Active Adventures?

Above all, we aim to be amazing hosts. We're proud of our kiwi roots, and our professional, warm and relaxed style of running trips around the world is unforgettable.

We're VERY picky about who we select to work in our team, and we have people from all over the world lining up to guide our trips. So we get to hire the absolute BEST in the business.

As soon as you get off the plane, we've got all the details of your vacation covered – top notch meals, comfortable transport & accommodation, amazing guides and INCREDIBLE service.

Whether you’re new to adventure travel, or you’ve never travelled in a group before, you’ll find yourself arriving home positively different from when you left.

With our small groups (no more than 14), you'll get to know our team, your fellow travellers, and have the flexibility and freedom to do as much (or as little!) as you like.

It's all about getting there under your own steam – on foot, in a sea kayak, or by bike. What better way is there to experience mind blowing scenery? If it's your first time, no worries – our expert guides have got you covered.

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