To get a lot more out of your European adventure, veteran travelers suggest you factor some of your interests within your route. This could range from adding activities like hiking, skiing, white water rafting, or cycling or more relaxed pursuits like art appreciation, wine tasting, or bird watching. Before you arrive in Europe, consult the activity section of a good guide book or research your options on the Internet. Some of the more popular activities and the best places to do them are featured below.Hiking or trekking are great ways to leave the cities behind and explore Europe's mountains, lakes and forests. If you plan to hike, make sure you adequately prepare your outdoor gear and equipment and inform someone else about your plans.
Also make sure you get yourself in shape by walking with a backpack before you leave home, gradually building up to the distance you expect to cover in Europe. Some of the best and most scenic hiking is in the mounting areas like the Alps of Austria, Switzerland, France and Italy. In some regions like England, you can make shorter hikes from village to village without needing to camp or cook your own food.If cycling is more of your hobby, you will enjoy Europe. Europeans love cycling and there are lots of dedicated bike paths all over the continent. This is especially true in the Netherlands and Belgium.
Other good areas for cycle touring are Tuscany in Italy, Provence in France, southern England, anywhere in Ireland and southern Germany.If you plan on skiing, some of the best ski resorts can be found in Austria, France and Switzerland. Though skiing is not a budget pastime, it is still possible to hit the slopes cheaply if you avoid the Alps and head to some of the lesser-known mountains in Andorra and Eastern Europe which offer some of the cheapest skiing packages. Ski gear can be hired in even the smallest mountain resorts so there's no need to bring boots and poles around. You can also ski and small resorts in Scotland, Spain, northern Greece and Turkey.For surfers, opportunities aren't great but they do exist in Europe.
Windsurfing is more popular along the Mediterranean coast. Windsurfing is also extremely popular in Greece, southern Italy and Croatia. You can hire boards and equipment on the beach or in the resort towns. North Cornwall in England is a chilly but popular surfing center. Believe it or not, Scotland also has some good waves.
Great areas to windsurf include Ireland and both the North and South coasts of Spain.There are also plenty of things of interest for scuba divers around Europe. The best scuba diving and snorkeling is off the coast of southern Europe, Turkey and Greece. Other good diving spots are Cyprus, Malta, Portugal and parts of Italy.
There are also hundreds of organized adventure activities that you can take part in while in Europe. These can include canyoning, white water rafting, ballooning, parasailing, bungee jumping and hang gliding. Always keep in mind that these activities carry an element of risk so always check the safety record and the reputation of the company you use. Make sure your equipment is in good condition and that your travel insurance covers is the type of activity you want to try.
Always listen to the local warnings on weather conditions.If you're not into the adrenaline rush, there are also good bird watching and fishing spots. River fishing throughout Europe is subject to all sorts of restrictions so you might have to buy a license and your catch can be limited.
Many stretches of river or also privately owned, so it can be extremely expensive to fish there.
.Michael Russell.Your Independent guide to Europe Vacation.
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By: Michael Russell