Adventure sport in Argentina

For most people Argentina is the land of steaks, gauchos, yerba mate, tango, and football—to name just a few of the numerous stereotypes (not that they are necessarily wrong or hurtful in this case) that summarise a very diverse, nuanced, and absolutely massive country. Argentina has offered the world much over the years and continues to be a source of innovation, development and inspiration in a slew of different fields.

One aspect of the country that’s often overlooked—or at the very least not too discussed, including by city-dwelling Argentineans themselves, which is in fact the majority of the country’s residents—is the tremendous nature that Argentina has and the potential for adventure (both planned and the more dangerous kind) that that nature has to offer.

In Argentina’s northeast, where the country borders Paraguay and Brazil one finds tropical jungle of South American fame. One of the world’s largest waterfalls, Iguazo, can be found precisely at the point that the three countries come together.

On the other side of the north of Argentina, one finds the Atacama Desert, the driest place in the world outside of the polar region (which despite their massive but diminishing ice coverage, which might lead one to think that the regions aren’t dry, are in fact the driest regions on the entire planet). The desert, which also spills into Chile and Bolivia, creates an other worldly impression and is actually used to test extraterrestrial exploration devices, like the famed Martian rovers.

In the very south of the country—it should be noted that Argentina has the distinction of being the southernmost country on the planet—there is the region of Tierra del Fuego which is dotted with massive, snow- and ice-capped peaks, numerous fjords and unique wildlife. One also finds, just slightly north of Tierra del Fuego, the Patagonian Ice Field which is one of the largest (and sadly last) glacial fields on the planet.

Whatever it is you’re seeking in the world of outdoor adventure, Argentina has something to offer. From its tropical jungles to its glacial regions, to its flat and sprawling plains to its titanic mountains, there’s something for every adventurer in Argentina.

Skydiving over Prague

Prague is one of the most beautiful and remarkable cities in Europe. It was the former capital of the Holy Roman Empire; it was possibly the most advanced European city during the Middle Ages and Europe’s first stone city; it was home to both a German and Czech population until the middle of the 20th century, which gave it access to diversity and thoughts not seen in most other parts of Europe—and the list goes on and on and on. It’s hard to find someone who has been to Prague who wasn’t impressed by it, regardless of if they went for the cheap and delicious beer and a party with friends or if they went to suck up it’s fascinating history.

I recently went to Prague with a couple of friends and did something that blew me away—fortunately not literally though it was a possibility. I went skydiving. I had always wanted to go skydiving, but had just never done it for reasons that eluded me. I’m not sure if it was the cost to duration ratio, or perhaps I was just a bit afraid of jumping from an aeroplane, or maybe I didn’t want to do it alone. Honestly, I can’t say what it was, but when I was for a long-weekend in Prague with two close friends we spontaneously decided that we wanted a little bit of adventure injected into our cultural escape. The experience did not disappoint.

It’s a bit hyperbolic to say we were skydiving over Prague. Needless to say, we were in the countryside just outside of Czechia’s capital. The service provided was excellent too. We were collected at our hotel in the morning and driven out to the air field. We were also given a demonstration of how the whole experience works and met the professionals who would be jumping with us (and they spoke perfect English and were able to answer all our questions). As none of us had ever done a jump before it was a tandem jump, which practically meant that all my friends and I were doing was experiencing extreme adrenaline as we fell to Earth and the guides were the ones making sure we didn’t die.

It was one of the most amazing experiences of my life and I can recommend it to anyone who’s looking for their next big adrenaline kick!

Of Ice and Men

Sorry for the pun, but I had to if I wanted to talk about ice climbing. Ice climbing is truly an amazing sport that last winter I got to experience and I have to say that I think I’m hooked. With all the specific ice climbing equipment necessary, it’s a sport that doesn’t come cheaply. While there is some areas of possibly overlap—ski boots and sometimes be used as climbing boots, for example—there is a lot of unique equipment that needs to be obtained before one can properly ice climb.

In my case, I went ice climbing with a friend and a group of acquaintance from the local climbing club. As is often the case in outdoor sports clubs a lot of the more experienced and seasoned climbers had surplus equipment so I didn’t have to worry too much about buying or hiring equipment (that I might not have even known about if I did it myself). After my first experience I told some of the people that I was ready to do it again sometime soon and would even consider buying some of my own kit.

There was a local sporting supply shop, they told me, that worked with the climber’s club (providing space for meetings and allowing them to post events on the shops message board) and assured me that that sort of social organisation was common among climbers. They would often hold events such as ‘slideshows’ where climbers could show photos from their climbing trips abroad and there was plenty of time for Q&A afterwards.

I tried it a few more that season and although I was sore and a bit bruised after seemingly every foray to frozen walls, the sport had a hold over me. With a little bit of luck the climbing club is going this winter to the French Alps to do some ice climbing for a week and I’m hoping to join them. Unfortunately there’s not too much ice climbing to be found in the UK, but then again I’ve always been drawn towards sports that require to travel a bit and see the world.

Best outdoor activities in Wales

In addition to its ancient language, stunning, lush landscapes, unique culture and rich history, in recent years Wales has become an increasing popular destination for adventure travels and outdoors lovers. With mountains and valley, fast moving rivers, rugged coasts complete with numerous sea caves, and compared to much of the rest of the UK very low levels of population density, Wales is a haven for all things outdoors. The only difficulty is deciding what to spend your limited time on!
Firstly, remember that there are also numerous possibilities for more traditional sports like football (especially after Wales’ success in the UEFA Euro 2016 tournament) and rugby. If you’re in the market for sports of that sort, Wales will not disappoint. With so many different events going on in Wales websites like have seen surges in popularity in recent years. You’re very likely to find whatever you’re looking for in the realm of team sports and more traditional sports.
However, that is by no means the only thing on offer in Wales. Over the last decades a sport that has seen an increasing in popularity is surfing. When most people think of surfing they think of warm, sunny, tropical beaches strewn with palm tress and sugary cocktails. While that’s not the case in Wales, it is nevertheless an extremely popular place for surfing, but it’s not for the faint-hearted. The waters are often quite cool and so a wet suit is part of the essential kit for the Welsh surfer as is—obviously—a strong ability to swim because the waters round Wales can often be unforgiving with deadly currents that can sweep one out to sea so be sure to do your research before you hop on that board.
Unsurprisingly, the Welsh countryside with it famed hills and praised valleys is also a great place to indulge in river rafting if you’re keen on water sport, but can’t quite muster the desire to go surfing on the seaside. With it’s many meandering streams and rivers, rafting is starting to become a staple of the adventurous holiday-maker and there are a great number of guides and experts who are willing to take you on rafting escapades.
Not all the outdoor sports are necessarily full of adrenaline. For those who wish to have a more quiet and relaxing holiday in the peace and quiet of nature, Wales offers abundant opportunities for walking holidays throughout the valleys, hills and along the coasts, with the possibility of camping or staying in small huts along the way.
Regardless of what level of excitement it is that you’re after you’re likely to find what you’re looking for not so far way in the wilds of the Welsh countryside.