The endless march of technology means that very little surprises us these days. We long for the kinds of adventures that were had by explorers of day gone by. Package holidays and cheap flights have made the world more accessible, but at what cost? Is there really no mystery left in the world or are there still some hidden treasures to be uncovered?
If you think off the beaten track, there are still pockets of the world that people shy away from, perhaps for good reason, but it means that adventure lives on. Pack your bags, be brave and get ready to venture into the unknown…
For a real cultural departure, find yourself some cheap flights to Lagos. Africa this may be, but it’s as far removed from the luxury safari scene as you can possibly be. This is urban adventure at its best. Lagos is a gutsy and gritty Nigerian city and definitely not on the tourist trail. It is likely to shock, excite and surprise all at once with its intoxicating rhythms, fast paced street life and fascinating people. This is the real Africa.
For colour, spice and spirituality book cheap flights to India. Steer clear of the beach resorts and yoga retreats and instead head for the unseen reaches of Kerala to the south or the unexplored state of Meghalaya in the north east for scenes of craggy cliff-faces and breath-taking waterfalls. From the holy River Ganges in Varanasi, to the erotic temples of Khajuraho and the troubled region of Kashmir, there is ample chance to trek and explore the hidden India in all its pristine beauty.
To see one of the last places on earth ever to be explored, a trip to Papua New Guinea will take you a world away from the comfort of the familiar. Trek through enigmatic mountain lands where traditional tribes dwell among the birds of paradise, long forgotten by civilisation. Steamy jungles and forbidding mountains will make you feel as though you’ve stumbled upon an undiscovered land, one that hasn’t changed in a thousand years and is hard to describe in words.
From remote tribes to the staggering Simian Mountains, Ethiopia is the only African country never to have been colonised and is well worth the difficult trip. Hardship and struggle are no strangers to this overlooked country and some sights may be hard to take, but alongside the Ethiopia we know from our news reports, is a country of extreme beauty, with rich culture, warm people and ancient traditions. It feels like it’s off the map, but that makes it all the more enticing to explore.