Remember that post about the World’s Best Rollercoasters? It kind of sparked our interest about the more adventurous and extreme side of tourism. For those thrill seekers out there, here’s a dozen ‘extreme’ tourist attractions that may well give you some inspiration for your next adventure.
1. The Cage of Death in Australia
A lovely name for an attraction, the Cage of Death can be found in Darwin’s Crocosaurus Cove. This setup allows you to get as close as you dare with a crocodile, with only a 4cm thick acrylic ‘cage’ separating you from…separation. If you look closely, you’ll notice there are some deep teeth and leg scratches on the acrylic, adding a dimension of realism to your near death experience.
2. Meet and touch a live crocodile – if you dare!
This unusual attraction is available at Paga Crocodile Pond, which is an almost holy crocodile haven. Paga is a town in northern Ghana where humans and crocodiles have learnt to live together in relative peace. In this area it’s forbidden to hurt, kill or even express any indication of disrespect towards crocodiles. It’s also not surprising to see kids fearlessly sitting on the back of a crocodile.
3. Cliff Base Jumping in Norway
Initially popularized by lemmings, cliff base jumping has eagerly been adopted and adapted by humans to produce a less fatal, yet no less thrilling, activity. Norway is well known for its stunning natural scenery, and what better place to cheat death in a wing suit? As you hurtle through the sky like a mammalian falcon, you’ll be glad you remembered to pack your parachute, which can really help in staying alive at the end of this jump.
4. Bungee jumping into an active volcano
Nope, you’re not dreaming: we really mean bungee jumping into an active volcano. Don’t worry; we haven’t turned into a cult extolling the virtues of the mass suicide…but why jump from a bridge when you can jump into a volcano? Maybe it’s not the smartest thing to do, but it will definitely be a thrilling experience. If you find yourself in Chile, why not have a pop at bungee jumping from a helicopter into the Villarrica volcano? No big deal, right?
5. Face-to-face with the largest predator in the sea
Probably the best way to meet predators such as Great White Sharks, Tiger Sharks or Bull Sharks is in a diving cage. Remember to watch where you put your hands…
However, if you’d like to get up close and personal with Whale Sharks or Blacktip Sharks, you can book a tour that takes you swimming close to them. Reaching weights of over 20 tonnes, the Whale Shark is the largest fish, so best not to play too rough.
6. Zorbing in New Zealand
Let’s discover how our hamsters must feel in this big ball! All hamster ball lovers have to climb into this transparent ball for a taste of rodent medicine. This is actually one ball inside of another, with a layer of air in-between, which protects against shocks. Now you only have to begin tumbling down a hill.
There have been a few broken bones in the history of zorbing, but with 100,000 people who have already tried this, no one has ever been sick inside the ball…reassuring.
7. Walk the Plank
Arrrr! Here be a kind of hike you would love to take your mother-in-law on. This is definitely the most dangerous hike in the world!
This attraction is located at Mount Huashan in China, with vertical staircases and rickety plank paths equipped with rusty iron safety chains. Suspended thousands of feet above the ground, these old wooden planks threaten quite a long drop below.
8. Chernobyl Tour
I know that some of you dream about visiting the site of the worst nuclear disaster in history…and now your dream might come true!
As you tour Chernobyl, you will be allowed to keep your own clothes but you will have to stay in the safe zone. You won’t be allowed to step on the soil, because it’s 30 times more radioactive than the road. As you leave the site you will be tested twice for radiations, just in case!
9. CN Tower Edge Walk in Toronto
The CN Tower Edge holds the Guinness World Record for being the highest external walk on a building in the world. The participants are allowed to walk with hands free along a footbridge with a width of 1.5 meters that surrounds the tower. Visitors form groups of six and are protected by a harness. This tour has only quite recently opened, in August 2011, and already attracts people of all ages.
10. Kayaking with whales
Combining kayaking with encountering a wild marine mammal is definitely an amazing and unique life experience. The size and weight of whales make this encounter a big challenge in itself! Let’s enjoy paddling in a wonderful and breathtaking landscape whilst watching the life of those gentle giants, and perhaps we can even take some cool photos.
11. The Death Road tour
This is a name that really makes you want to go for a walk! The Death Road in Coroico, Bolivia, is the world’s most dangerous road, where 200 to 300 travellers annually meet their demise. On the road you can identify many marks where vehicles have fallen from the road. Sheer topography, extreme climate and unstable geology all combine to heighten the danger of this road. Join this adventure only with professionals.
12. Volcano Boarding in Nicaragua
Why follow the crowd in boarding on snow when we can board on an active volcano? Cerro Negro volcano is the youngest volcano in Central America, at the tender age of 160 years. It is also the most active cinder cone volcano in the world, with 23 eruptions in 160 years. The most recent eruption was in 1999. Don’t let that put you off, though – the professionals say that no one has ever sustained any damages or injury in boarding; the only danger you risk is some gravel rash on the bottom of your legs and arms. The threat of a possible eruption, the speed of the board and the height of the volcano all contribute to the excitement of volcano boarding.
Some people like to live life on the edge, and enjoy getting close to death to feel more alive. Others say they just want to experience something stunning and different and get out of the routine. In any case, these are some experiences of a lifetime.
What about you? Did you already try something in our list? Are you going to? Do you have any sports for thrills-seekers that you’d like to share with us? Comment below!
Thanks to: (1),(2)&(3) http://etb.ht/GPWqvq (4)&(5) http://www.flickr.com/photos/adamcnelson/ (6)&(7) http://www.flickr.com/photos/7362873@N06/ (8) http://www.flickr.com/photos/krypto/ (9) http://www.flickr.com/photos/funksoup/ (10) http://www.flickr.com/photos/ariaphotography/ (11) http://www.flickr.com/photos/uw-eric/ (12) http://www.flickr.com/photos/michaeldavie/ (13) http://www.flickr.com/photos/launceston_lad/ (14)&(15) http://www.flickr.com/photos/benbeiske/ (16) http://www.flickr.com/photos/pedromourapinheiro/ (17) http://www.flickr.com/photos/tiktok-africa/ (19) http://www.flickr.com/photos/onetreehillstudios/ (20) http://www.flickr.com/photos/winkyintheuk/ (21) http://www.flickr.com/photos/gumption/ (22) http://www.flickr.com/photos/mywayaround/ (23) http://www.flickr.com/photos/elrentaplats/ (24)&(25) http://www.flickr.com/photos/ericwithak/ (26) http://www.flickr.com/photos/iks_berto/