Most people imagine a leisure time somewhere far away from their everyday lives when they think about travel. However, if you replace the leisure time with an activity that will help both your body and mind, you will reach a completely new level of travelling. For quite a while, active holiday trend has taken over the tourist industry prompting countries to enhance their offer of places to explore. Moreover, you will find a rich offer of activities that will help you eliminate stress, like meeting the wildlife, yoga classes and simply enjoying nature.
Words: Nina Simons
To help you start, here are the best places that inspire strength and mindfulness you should definitely fit in your travel plans.
Iceland is one of the most ecologically magnificent places on the planet. Many describe the hiking experience here as walking through the fairytale thanks to out of this world landscapes. The most extraordinary trail here is Laugavegurinn thanks to the nature you will see while hiking like volcanic desserts and ice caves. Here you will have an opportunity to see Icelandic horse, a smaller horse breed that natives are very proud of. However, Iceland is also famous for its numerous waterfalls like Kirkjufellsfoss near Mount Kirkjufell and in the South Coast with a magnificent drop. There is a number of hotels which offer a full wellness experience like Centerhotel Arnarhvoll and Frost and Fire Hotel.
While Europe is mostly full of big cities and modernised, you can also find astounding nature and preserved ecological values. So, it’s no wonder that Scotland is on this list since it is full of green hills, flowery valleys, cliffs dramatically overlooking the horizon and hiking trails. Scottish National Trail is 537 miles long trail which takes 1-2 months to hike and is a unique way to be one with nature. However, you can also have a shorter hiking experience lasting for 8 days on the West Highland Way which will take you by Loch Lomond and Rannoch Moor. Those who want to try mountain climbing should definitely visit the Isle of Skye in the Inner Hebrides archipelago. Here you can stay in Portree and go on to explore the mountainous region and lake from its urban setting.
Once you go to Thailand you will always wish to come back. This island state in Indonesia is all about nature which is characterized by untouched flora and unique wildlife. Doi Luang Chiang Dao is the third highest peak and the most beautiful one with a moderately demanding hike over steep areas. If you want to see the wonderful animal life here, visit one of the ethical animal sanctuaries like Elephant Nature Park. This sanctuary is located in the mountains of the city of Chiang Mai and is staff dedicates their time to saving and caring for elephants. Additionally, this is also home to cats, dogs, and buffaloes which needed home and protection.
If you want to relax and work on your spirituality, then visit the Barai Spa where they will teach you to open your chakras and recharge the batteries. Yoga is also popular here and you will find many retreats like Amanpuri on Phuket where you can practice and meditate with local instructors.
There are many amazing things about Australia, and Tasmania is definitely one of them. This is the place where you will have it all and what you desire from your traveling. To start off, join one of the guided tours of Tasmania that will show you the beauties of the area like the magnificent Bay of Fires. Here you will see pristine white beaches and turquoise ocean colorfully enriched by the orange-toned granite cliffs. However, Tasmania is also unique for a certain natural phenomenon that you can also witness from some areas of Antarctica and New Zealand – The Aurora Australis. It’s the best seen during equinox in September or in the winter period from Cockle Creek, South Arm Peninsula, and Dodges Ferry.
Besides amazing ocean water to do any water sport imaginable, Tasmania is a home to wonderful and unique flora and fauna that will spiritually fulfill you. This is the only place where you will see Fagus, a native deciduous plant in Australia, but also you will enjoy a wide range of eucalyptus rainforest. Animals such as pademelon, Tasmanian devil, quoll, and Tasmanian bettong live in many national parks and sanctuaries on the island like Cradle Mt National Park and Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary.
5. Inca Trail
A 21-mile long Inca Trail in Peru has been attracting visitors from all over the world for decades. Not only will you be able to witness the remnants of long lost civilization of Inca, but the landscapes and nature are breathtaking. The trail is also the only way for tourists to visit Machu Picchu the same ways that Incas did.
Since the trail is long and goes through landscapes, it will take four days to complete which is a perfect way to fully experience nature and its wildlife. Many tours offer a unique experience with Peruvian music and cuisine which is full of healthy and vegan meals. Inca Trail is an ideal way to experience intact nature and feel the magic of fresh air, undisturbed landscapes and the clear night sky.
Sometimes changing the scenery is all a person needs to find its inner strength and mindfulness. One of these places will help you wake up the active princess inside you, but if you dare to go to more you will flourish as a queen.