We’re looking forward to fun outdoor summer activities with our friends; because, although we like relaxing on the beach, sometimes we want to do something.
Though we’d love to go backpacking through Patagonia or kayaking in Norway, we can’t spend thousands of dollars to fulfill our sense of adventure.
Check out our 7 adventuresome trips this summer:
1. Take A Hike!
Check out Trail Link, a free resource with more than 30,000 miles of trails throughout the country. Search by location, activity (mountain biking v. walking), and surface (asphalt v. dirt). Results include descriptions, photos, and reviews from previous adventurers. This is one of our favorite, cheap ways to escape the city—many of these trails don’t charge entrance fees, so all you need are your legs!
2. Hop In The Saddle.
If it’s your first time, visit your local Parks and Recreation website (Google it). For example, New York City’s Department of Parks & Recreation lists horseback riding opportunities, including prices; renting a horse in Prospect Park in Brooklyn is a great day excursion that costs only $30 per hour—$40 per hour for a group lesson.
3. Find Your Footing.
For climbing routes in your area, try RockClimbing.com, which will help you find both outdoor climbing areas and indoor gyms. Outdoor retailer Eastern Mountain Sports runs a climbing school with several locations in the Northeast; one-day lessons can be had for $150.
4. Ride The Rapids.
Check out Rafting America, a collection of river rafting tour operators, to find the trip that’s best for your location and level of experience. Cost varies greatly by location: It only costs $38 per person to paddle Moose River in New York's Adirondack Mountains, but rivers out West (which tend to have more spectacular scenery) will generally set you back at least $100. Rafting equipment is included in these prices.
We suggest going with an organization in your area. For example, Zog Sports in New York offers white water rafting day trips for $115, which includes round-trip transportation, equipment, raft guides, and lunch. This is great for city dwellers without a car…and for those who don’t want to deal with logistics. Some YMCAs and similar organizations also take occasional adventure trips like these. To find a group near you, try outing clubs or search Meetup.com for groups that take similar trips.
5. Sleep Under The Stars.
Search for campsites by location or by type of spot (cabins v. tents) with Camping.com and Reserve America, which let you check availability and reserve online. For a more organized camping outing, search Google or Meetup.com for adventure travel groups in your area. For example, trips through the Dartmouth Outing Club are open to anyone—student or not. The club even rents cabins in New Hampshire to non-members for $20 per person per night.
6. Go Fish!
If it’s more your style to chill out and fish, find the best fishing spots near you with LandBigFish.com. For guided fishing, search this database for trips that come with equipment, a captain to steer your ship, and often some food. We found a trip that costs $150 for a half-day of bass fishing in the Finger Lakes region of New York. If you have a group of at least six people, try a fishing charter, like this one offering a half day of fishing for stripers in New Jersey for $450 ($75 per person for a group of six).
7. Grab A Paddle.
Canoe & Kayak magazine online can help you find destinations and paddling schools, if you’re looking to hone your skills. Even first-time paddlers can hit the water without much instruction – all you need is a kayak, for which rental prices are about $40 to $50 per day. If you live in New York City, take advantage of the free rentals at the Downtown Boathouse from mid-May to mid-October. The boathouse also offers three-hour guided trips of the Hudson River during the summer.
Now, go out and explore!