If you love extreme sports and have a penchant for travel, then you’re probably keen to try out a range of different adrenaline-fuelled activities as you traverse the globe. Here we look at eight extreme sports from around the world that are sure to get your heart pumping!
Volcano Boarding – Nicaragua
Ever wanted to zip down the side of an active volcano while sitting aboard a plywood toboggan? Well, you probably do now! Volcano boarding in Nicaragua certainly isn’t for the faint-hearted, but it is great fun for those with a sense of adventure. Apparently it’s possible to clock up speeds of around 90 km per hour – however, your only brakes are your heels.
Rumour has it that this activity was pioneered by an Australian (of course); trips now run from León to active volcanos such as Cerro Negro and the Sierra Nevada.
Volcano boarding, Nicaragua
Slacklining – Norway
You may occasionally see people in city parks around Australia trying to walk on a loosely-strung line between two trees. There’s a good chance they are backpackers or hipsters – and the activity they’re partaking in is slacklining.
Slacklining is similar to tight-rope walking; however the line isn’t tight, rather it’s slack. A slackline is actually quite stretchy and bouncy – in some ways it’s a lot like walking on a giant rubber band – and it’s flat rather than round. The rope’s flat nylon construction is what allows (skilled) participants to maintain their balance.
Slacklining can be performed virtually anywhere, however, the Guinness World Record for the highest slackline walk was set in Norway. Christian Schou crossed a Norwegian fjord approximately 1000 metres above the ground!
Downhill Mountain Biking – Bolivia
So downhill mountain biking is available in most countries – in fact, it’s pretty popular here in Australia. However, even the toughest trails here are no match for Bolivia’s so-called Death Road. It’s one of the nation’s most popular backpacker activities – and downhill mountain biking certainly earns its reputation as an extreme sport in this instance!
Downhill mountain biking, The Death Road.
Rap Jumping – Australia
Leap face-first from a seven-storey building in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. Rap Jumping is a commercial style of Aussie rappelling that was originally performed by the Australian SAS. Participants leap from the side of the building, before ‘running’ down the face of the wall – all at their chosen speed of descent. While it may sound scary, Rap Jumping has a 100% safety record and you are under expert instruction every step of the way. For those who want a slightly ‘less scary’ option, backwards abseiling is also available.
Rap jumping is a great, safe way to conquer your fear of heights for good – while obtaining an excellent view of Melbourne’s CBD in the process!
Rap jumping, Melbourne
Freshwater Cave Diving – Mexico
If you’re not too claustrophobic and don’t mind being underwater, freshwater cave diving could be an extreme sport to add to your bucket list. This activity involves being lowered into a big hole to explore a submerged cave system – and of course, this isn’t without its risks.
Fringed by lush jungle, Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula is the perfect place to do it; there is an abundance of sinkholes (cenotes) that lead to an extensive network of underground freshwater caves.
Freshwater cave diving
Heli Skiing or Boarding – New Zealand
If you’re a proficient skier or snowboarder and have some cash to splash, heli-skiing or boarding is a must-try activity. The advantage of accessing untouched areas via helicopter is the increase in powder and the decrease in crowds; it’s likely you’ll have a mountain to yourself.
New Zealand is a very popular place to give this extreme sport a go, as there is an abundance of locations to choose from and the snow quality is usually great.
Bungee Jumping – China
Okay so bungee jumping is an adrenaline-fuelled activity you can do in most parts of the world, however, only one country offers the highest leap. That country is China – or more specifically, the region of Macau.
The Macau Tower is the world’s highest commercial tower at 233 metres, and although it isn’t the most scenic jump it offers more time in the air!
The AJ Hackett Macau Tower
Ice Climbing – USA
As the name suggests, ice climbing involves scaling ice using specialist climbing equipment such as ice axes. Participants often choose ice formations such as frozen waterfalls – and the scenery is often half the appeal!
If you’re visiting the USA, Colorado’s Ouray Ice Park (opened 1995) is a facility devoted exclusively to ice climbing. In fact, it’s the first park in the world that claims to be solely dedicated to the sport. The park offers more than 200 climbs and is set in a spectacular natural gorge.
Whether you’re rap jumping in Melbourne, volcano boarding in Nicaragua or heliboarding in New Zealand, there’s no better way to see the world! If you love extreme sports, the options are endless – and new sports are evolving across the globe all the time!