The natural world is stunningly beautiful and diverse. It welcomes spectators to gaze in awe at the incredibly varied physical landscapes blessing our planet. In some places, rivers are architects that carve canyons through glorious stone slabs, exposing a colorful palette of orange and red hues hidden deep within the ground. Throughout the landscape, volcanoes have gifted us a great number of islands where we can now dig our toes into fine sand, allowing us a peaceful locale to gaze up at the prominent structures still lining the horizon. Other regions boast humbling bodies of water that gleam bright turquoise against the shining sun, providing a source of inspiration to dive below the surface and explore the aquatic world below. Even further removed, in a remote corner of the world, the seventh continent yields slabs of ice miles thick that act as a tomb, encasing clues to our planet’s evolution, protected by a harsh climate and local wildlife faithfully guarding their land.
These descriptions only scratch the surface of all the crevices available for us to explore. Here at Your Concierge NYC, we wholeheartedly believe that every inch of our planet has something breathtaking to discover. For those with not quite enough time to traverse all of these bountiful inches, we have conjured up a list of our top 5 location recommendations for those who are looking to reconnect with nature. In case the great outdoors is not your idea of the perfect getaway, stay tuned for some more of our “Top 5” picks of other travel styles coming up in the near future.
As always, we are happy to help curate your ideal vacation to anywhere in the world. To get a an idea of how we can augment your vacation experiences, feel free to contact us here and we will have one of our travel experts reach out to you promptly!
Grand Canyon National Park
Imagine staring up at the towering red rock walls that make up the imposing Grand Canyon from the level of the river that carved the work of art in the first place. The vast majority of travelers will never venture down into the canyon, given its lack of true roads and penchant for adventure. But trust us, some of the most awe-inspiring experiences can only be had from this vantage point. Think white water rafting along the Colorado River – or better yet – take a dory ride like the infamous Lewis and Clark surely used for an even more heart pounding way to navigate the jutting rocks and serious rapids. For those wanting the view of a lifetime without the adrenaline-inducing palpitations or spray from river, consider a helicopter tour for stunning aerial shots with the opportunity to land within the canyon, or perhaps a quick hike or mule tour to explore the 1.2 million acre park more thoroughly.
Are you the type of person that loves nature, adventure, varied landscapes, and culture all in one trip? Then look no further – the Pura Vida way of life in Central America’s gem of Costa Rica is the perfect locale for you. Spend your energy traversing the rugged rainforests teeming with exotic wildlife and regain it with your toes in the sand of beaches lining both the Caribbean and the Pacific. Add some over the top experiences - pun intended - by zip lining above the canopies of tropical rainforests with views of the imposing Areñal Volcano on the horizon. Don’t forget to immerse yourself in the food, history, and architecture of the capital with a relaxed walking tour of the region led by your very own local expert.
The truly adventurous at heart will fall hard for the myriad things to do throughout the largely untouched natural splendor of New Zealand, with options that will take you by land, sea, sky, ... and even gravity. Cruising Fiordland National Park is the ideal way to get in touch with primitive nature and wildlife, while maintaining the luxury we all know and love as a home base. From here, venture out to some of the globe’s most accessible glaciers by helicopter for a day spent hiking in an ethereal environment. The icing on the cake for adrenaline junkies is likely what New Zealand has become partially known for: bungee jumping. What better place to take the ultimate leap of faith than New Zealand, which boasts some of the world’s largest bungee jumps where daring travelers can simultaneously survey the beautiful landscaped valleys as gravity takes its course.
To fully explore Australia, you would truly have to spend the rest of your life on the continent. We recommend starting your trip to the Land Down Under in the capital city by ascending the Sydney Harbour Bridge for sweeping views of the iconic Sydney Opera House (which we also recommend touring, if available!) From there, take to the coast to snorkel the Great Barrier Reef, where you will get up close and personal with the world’s largest coral reef system – home to everything from sea sponges and clownfish to anemones and reef sharks. While we are on the aquatic theme, don’t forget to catch some waves at the well-known Bondi Beach where surf schools are professionals at getting even the most inexperienced of surfers up on their boards. Once you have had your fill of the water, journey inland to survey Ayers Rock at Uluru, a historic cultural site sacred to the indigenous population believed to hold ancient wisdom. For the grand finale of your trip, you can volunteer to be submerged into a crocodile pen for an up-close encounter with monstrous saltwater crocs or take to the ocean for a cage dive where a few Great White Sharks might just come over to say hello. After all, what better way to get in touch with nature and her inhabitants than greeting them at their own front door?
Have you ever dreamed of venturing to a far off land with a rugged landscape without a single piece of civilization in sight? For some, this may sound too extreme. For others, this may be a transcendent glimpse of paradise. Regardless of which category you fall into, rest assured that you can explore the seventh continent of Antarctica without stepping out of your comfort zone. Departing from various ports in South America, sail onboard a luxuriously appointed cruise ship complete with spa services, upscale eateries, and world-class educational opportunities. Once arriving to the land of ice and snow, you will kayak to glorious glaciers, walk along the snow covered shores amidst arctic wildlife, and observe killer whales going about their day. Longer itineraries include stops at both South Georgia Island and the Falkland Islands, where you can observe colonies of king penguins and albatross in numbers not found anywhere else in the world. This is truly the trip of a lifetime, and we are confident you will leave with not only museum caliber photos, but also with a newfound appreciation for nature and priceless memories of a land most people will only ever get to visit in their dreams.