Life-defining Activities Around the World – You’ve probably biked or hiked a few trails through the mountains in your time. The United States’ Sierra Nevada range or maybe through Ecuador or Chile. While these mountains and treks are certainly must-see places, there are several destinations that are no larger than their dots on the map that are just as invigorating. It’s these smaller, lesser-known locations that really offer memorable experiences.
For instance, you’ve probably sailed a time or two, but what about sailing over land? Yes, you read that right – Argentina’s Pampa El Leoncito was once a large lake. Today, what remains of it is a 7-mile-long sea of dried clay. The sail boats here have wheels and are known as ‘wind cars’. Located about 14 miles outside of Barreal, land sailing is big-time fun in these parts. The Andes Mountains skirt the edges of this dried lake bed and tower over 21,000 feet above the ‘shores’. With the wind in your sails and the smooth clay beneath your wind car, speeds in excess of 62 miles-per-hour have been recorded. You can ride in a tandem wind car with a knowledgeable guide, or get some training and drive your own.
Watching volcanoes on television or in the movies is pretty awe-inspiring, but the thrill of seeing one or more up close comes to life on a volcano trek in Vanuatu. The twin spires of volcanoes, Mounts Marum and Benbow, loom high in the center of Vanuatu’s Ambryn Island. The island itself is often shrouded in a volcanic haze, and the activity of the two volcanoes is monitored constantly. Trekking there is only allowed with local, knowledgeable guides. Treks are available in two types: You can opt for the day trip which takes you in from the north for a there-and-back hike to the top of Mount Marum, or you can trek the length of the island, hiking up Marum from the north, down the other side and up Benbow to the other edge of Ambryn. The second option includes an overnight camping experience, jungle hiking, and a challenging climb – but the payoff is getting to look directly into the eye of Mother Earth into a roiling brew of magma.
Where will you trek?