Adventure Travel, Tours, Experiences and Thrills
The adventure travel market is exploding in opportunities, services, hosts and places to visit and it’s so easy to book a trip. Many travel adventure consumers are jumping in to create new, more fulfilling travel experiences.
And while we think of adventure travel as appealing to only thrill seekers living life on the edge, adventure travel companies are mixing in a diverse array of activities to make these trips very appealing. And who doesn’t like a getaway adventure that’s packaged to make all our travel dreams come true?
This travel market segment focused on adventure experiences has a dynamism in it that will make many travel marketing companies wealthy. Here’s a look at the market, what it is, and what travelers are booking.
Adventure Tourism Market
According to Allied Market Research, the global adventure travel market is booming and on stride to hit $2 Trillion in dollar terms within 8 years.
Their report, entitled Adventure Tourism Market reveals the breadth and scope of consumers, experiences, and demographics. The global adventure tourism market size reached $324.9 billion in 2022, and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 19.5% from 2023 to 2032 to $2 trillion by 2032.
Drivers of Adventure Travel Demand
Growth in the adventure travel space is driven by factors such as economic development, an increase in the trend of adventure travel, and the rising availability of affordable travel options.
It’s also fueled by a combination of technological advancements, such as online travel management software, a shift in consumer preferences towards experiential travel, a preference for those aged 28 to 48, and due to supportive government policies in various regions.
Certainly, social media is responsible for creating awareness of if not demand for adventure experiences that can range from land to water or in-the-air experiences.
Travelers: Dying to Get Away
Of recent, the end of the Covid pandemic has allowed hundreds of millions of tourists and travelers to get away from their too-familiar environs to break the monotony and routine of their lives. And the demand seems to have no end in sight as the market grows even faster than the general travel economy. A massive growth in tour guides, online booking software, instructors, and improved sports equipment means the experiences are ready and waiting today. And there won’t be any shortage of innovation as small tour operators offer unique adventure travel packages to make it easy for those who wish to plan the trip, and commit to making it a reality.
This perfect storm of facilities, people, money and need are intersecting and for many, it is a more engaging, beneficial form of travel experience offering multiple psychological and physical benefits.
Most would describe it as a more valuable travel form, and one that appeals in particular to an experience-hungry younger demographic.
What is Adventure Travel?
Adventure travel is a type of tourism where adventurers visit and explore popular, remote or exotic regions of the world. It is characterized by its emphasis on active participation, cultural exchange, outdoor exploration, and connection with nature.
Adventure travel can include a wide range of activities, such as trekking, hiking, climbing, mountain biking, cycling, scuba diving, safari, kayaking, and rafting, among others.
It’s difficult to define adventure travel since adventure means different things to different people. An eco-tour in a Costa Rica volcano region or a safari experience in Africa might be deemed adventurous to some, whereas to hardcore adventure seekers, a hike in the Himalayan mountains, swimming with sharks in Hawaii, or wingsuit flying in Dubai might be more to their liking.
Soft and Hard Adventure Experiences
In general however, adventure travel is identified by physical activity, interaction with nature, risk, cultural engagement, exploration and discovery, challenge and excitement, and normally involves participating with others. Some divide the market into soft or hard adventures.
Soft adventures might include hiking, kayaking, and backpacking which are less risky adventure activities and are more open to other elements such as the natural environment, learning, cultural immersion, and meaningful lifelong experiences. e-biking in European wine regions, hiking in Switzerland, or cycling through coffee groves in Columbia are part of this segment.
Soft adventure experiences are closely related to experiential travel such as ancient historical tours, culinary tours, and ecotours for an adventure of architecture, landscapes, vistas, and market visits lets travelers explore cultures and activities they would never find at home.
And that’s a key point about adventure travel, is that the world’s best adventures are in exotic locales that offer truly unique experiences in unique geographic features.
Hard adventures involve physically demanding, riskier activities for those who want to challenge themselves, feel exhilaration, grow out of fears, and push their physical limits. Hard experiences include rock climbing, canyoning, white water rafting, zip-lining, sky diving, paragliding, 4 wheeling, and other activities that require energy, stamina, and roughing it.
It’s More than Thrill Seeking
Some characterize adventure travel as more than thrill-seeking. For many, it’s a trip that takes them out of their comfort zone into the unknown and new adventures to them. An adventure trip could be a mountain biking trip in Canada, 4 ATVing in Colorado, mountain climbing in Nepal, paragliding in Italy, scuba diving in Acapulco, or simply a trip to an exciting destination such as New Zealand, Greece, or Peru.
The adventure is in the eyes of the consumer. And these range of experiences are for people of different ages and abilities giving the service sector breadth and broader appeal.
Many tour experience operators and marketplaces offer adventure tours. You’ll see most of the major and many local tour companies in your travel adventure searches online.
You can learn more about many of these companies at MountainIQ who provide a brief review of the major adventure tour providers.
Adventure Travel Companies
Here’s a sampling of adventure tour companies to provide a taste of experiences you might enjoy:
Bold Earth Adventures
Travel Adventures Unlimited
Adventure Tours Hawaii
Chasing Epic Mountain Bike Adventures
I Bike Tuscany Tours
Ecotours Costa Rica
Costa Rica Surf Trip
Yosemite Adventure Company
AlpenWild Alpine Adventures
Down Under Endeavours
Looking to add someone special to your Travel Marketing Team? Call Gord at 416-998-6246.
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