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Adventure Junkie? Top 10 Places to Find Excitement on the Cheap

Kuznetcov_Konstantin / Shutterstock
Written by Chris Osburn

Looking for an adrenaline rush that won’t crush your bank account? There are affordable adventures to be had and budget-friendly places to visit that pack a wallop without too much of a high price.

Here’s our list of 10 of the best places for you to discover adventure on the cheap.


Brian Lasenby/Shutterstock

Brian Lasenby/Shutterstock

America’s friendly neighbor to the north (with a particularly friendly exchange rate at the moment) offers big adventure, epic wilderness and limitless possibilities for making the most of any excursion. Fans of winter sports, mountain biking, long-distance hiking and off-the-grid travel will find Canada to be a haven. Head to British Columbia and the Yukon in the west and Quebec and the Maritime provinces in the east for the biggest outdoor thrills.


Whether you’re heading to Colombia to experience its ginormous mountains, unspoiled jungles, Pacific and Caribbean beaches, or its roaring nightlife in frenetic cities, the country is one of Latin America’s most welcoming and offers some of the best value trips for your money.


For sailing and sea kayaking and all sorts of waterborne adventures on the Med, you’d be hard pressed to find somewhere more affordable or scenic than Croatia.


Pierre LeClerc/Shutterstock

Pierre LeClerc/Shutterstock

Add some aloha to your adventure in Kauai while accessing the great outdoors kayaking the Hawaiian Islands’ only navigable river, traversing the arid expanse of Waimea Canyon, or hiking miles of wild beaches and coastal paths. No need to splurge, though. Kauai is home to plenty of budget friendly accommodation options including loads of places where you can camp for cheap or for free.


Whitewater, green rain forests, a craggy coast dotted with hundred of islands, the northern extreme of the Appalachian Trail … and all of this Maine adventure can be had at a fraction of the price you’ll pay for outdoorsy vacations in most other destinations in the States. Even the lobster’s cheap up here in New England’s vacation spot!


Surf’s up on Morocco’s Atlantic beaches! There are also sand dunes in the Sahara. and the Atlas Mountain range is perfect for trekking between traditional Berber villages and communing with nature. For adventures of the buzzing cultural variety, the fabled souks Marrakech, Fez, and Rabat are guaranteed to beguile with a tantalizing array of sounds, sights, and exotic aromas.


An Andean adventure may be the stuff of dreams, but getting there and being there is a lot more affordable and doable than many might realize. For the exhilaration of feeling like you’re on top of the world, discovering ancient folkways, exploring the Amazon, and tasting one of the world’s most adventurous cuisines, there’s a good reason so many savvy sojourners rank Peru at the top of their preferred places to visit.


Go island hopping – with more than 7,000 of them to choose from – in one of the world’s most world’s most affordable (and increasingly trendy) destinations. If it’s a tropical foray on an unbeaten path you seek, look no further than the Philippines.


Dave Allen Photography/Shutterstock

Dave Allen Photography/Shutterstock

You’re never too far from something fun to do outside in Tennessee. From the mighty Mississippi in the west to the Great Smoky Mountains in the east – with a whole lot of hiking trails, wetlands, caves, bird and wildlife sanctuaries, and rural delights in between – you’ll find the wild time you’re in search of with a touch of southern hospitality and an easygoing price tag.


Your vacation dollars go a long way in Vietnam, enabling you go deep exploring the country’s thickest jungles, most densely packed cities, colonial towns, surreal coastlines, and more.

Do you have a favorite place for inexpensive adventures that provide more bang for your buck? Leave your comments below.

About the author

Chris Osburn

Chris Osburn is a freelance writer, photographer, consultant, and curator and the driving force behind the long running and award winning blog, Originally from the American Deep South, Chris has lived and worked all over the world and has called London home since 2001.

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