Volunteering has never been this adventurous! ISV offers you myriads of volunteer and action-packed adventure options in a safe, fun, educational, and most importantly, well-organized locale. ISV participants make a significant difference in the world by annually contributing over 250,000 hours of volunteer work abroad in the fields of conservation and community development.
Adventure Travel Abroad
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Why We Love Eco-Adventure
When I chat about eco-adventure trips I’ve taken — and some of the dangerous and uncomfortable situations that, accordingly, I’ve found myself in — I get a common reaction. “Ohhh,” the other person will say. “You must be fearless.”
With friends, in front of the Nyiragongo volcano, after gorilla trekking in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Photo courtesy Eileen Loh
I can understand the error. After all, someone would have to be fearless to seek thrills in places where nature can severely screw you up or take you out. Substitute the word “stupid” for “fearless” in that last sentence, and that’s the other way people commonly react toward eco-adventure pursuits.
Those who enjoy eco-adventure do feel fear, and that’s part of the ‘adventure’ bit. Now that I’ve experienced both controlled thrills (roller coasters, horror movies) versus uncontrolled thrills (dangerous trekking; proximity to wild animals) I recognize the huge gulf of difference between the two. Give me a mountain over a roller coaster any day.
I don’t encourage anyone to go looking for danger, but in any eco-adventure abroad, chances are you’ll find it whether you go looking or not. In many countries, highly visited trekking, climbing, or spelunking areas (even in national parks) do not have Western safety amenities like hand- or guard-rails, marked trails, steps, or rangers who block off unsafe areas before the park opens in the morning. Which means: you very much are expected to proceed at your own risk.
It’s quite possible you’ll get in a situation where one slip, misstep, or failure to hang on could result in a bad injury at best. Pair this with the fact that, in many countries where this is true, there will most likely not be a medi-vac team a cell phone call away, ready to airlift you out of whatever jungle, river, mountain, or island you are on.
During those times, you are suddenly very aware that your life is entirely in your own hands. If I don’t get myself through this, the voice in your head is saying, I could die. Of course there’s fear — sometimes intense fear — and it would be a type of luxury to let fear take over; but if I don’t get myself through this, I could die is what wins, and so you keep moving. One reason we pursue insane outdoor adventures is that there’s something sacred about the stark realization that you, and only you, are in control of your destiny. Time slows to a crawl as you focus your entire body, mind, and soul in getting yourself to the other side.
Adrenaline propels you, and what comes after is the thrill. But this is different than the roller-coaster thrill; this is much more profound. Part of it is the knowledge that you really can depend on yourself to get through a very dangerous and, let’s face it, fearful situation. After all, the first thrill any of us ever really feels is the thrill of self-reliance.
The other part is the humility of knowing that, as badass as you are, Mother Nature can crush you at any given moment — and she could easily have done it this time — but she didn’t.
Five Things To Bring On An Eco-Adventure Trip
1. High-SPF (30+) Sunblock Stick. Keep in your pocket for lip protection throughout your trip, and you can use it on the rest of your face and exposed skin for that one time you run out of sunblock. ‘Cause there’s always that one time.
2. Footwear You Know. Do not wait until your trip to “break in” a new pair of hiking boots, trail runners, sports sandals, water shoes, or even insoles or arch supports. The difference between a comfortable pair of shoes and an excruciating pair is two full weeks of wear with lots of motion and action. This will tell you whether those shoes are really “waterproof” or merely “water-resistant,” for instance. In this same vein, blister-proof socks (from running or hiking suppliers) are a godsend.
3. All-Over Rain Gear. A waterproof jacket’s a clear necessity, but don’t overlook lightweight rain pants, to wear under or over regular pants. Having a dry upper torso is great, but if you’re wet and shivering from the waist down, you’re still miserable.
4. Gloves With Grip. To protect the hands from cold and from cuts, burns, or blisters. Situations that can damage your hands come up unexpectedly, and being able to stop and pull on a pair of grippy gloves can prevent future aggravation, injury, and Band-Aids.
5. Hat That Blocks Both Sun And Rain. A lightweight sports cap with a removable neck shade will work, as will a safari-type hat. Pro tip: A strip of sunburn down your neck is not fun. Wear the damn neck shade.
Explore remote and spectacular landscapes, work with deprived and deserving communities, or campaign for wildlife care and conservation on a travel adventure you’ll never forget.
Volunteer in Ecuador with a conservation project. Few countries have the biodiversity that can be found in Ecuador. Unfortunately, there are grave threats to that diversity. Volunteers work with local organizations devoted to conservation activities including reforestation, animal rescue, wildlife re-population, limiting invasive species and finding environmentally sustainable income sources ...
We offer three types of program at two different locations/bases: 1) Travelling Classroom - Our award winning travelling classroom program is a unique blend of learning Spanish and travelling adventure. Based in a beautiful country of huge diversity with golden palm fringed beaches, exotic jungles, spectacular and mysterious mountains, ancient indigenous cultures and the beat of exotic Lati...
See More. Do More - this is WAVA's mantra, and with structured projects in over 20 countries around the world we are able to cater for a whole host of authentic travel experiences - community and conservation volunteering, Gap Year trips, work placements, internships and career breaks.
USA, Canada, Europe, Costa Rica, Peru, China, Africa, and Ecuador/Galapagos - Choosing a meaningful summer experience starts with our 29 years of experience. 360° Student Travel provides teens the opportunity to partake in a wide variety of Community Service, Language, Pre-College Enrichment and Adventure programs around the world.
Mente Argentina offers you the chance to turn your visit into an unforgettable experience, since during your stay you will be able to do, learn or improve what has always interested you.
Become involved in a variety of activities with elephants. This is not the zoo, you will be right there with the elephants, feeding, bathing, and playing with these amazing creatures! Or take part in this amazing adventure where you will see turtles hatch from their eggs, raise them and release them into the big blue ocean.
Pro Dive Cairns has 2 programs in 1 location. Programs are offered in Australia
Looking for nature, adventure and cultural immersion? Interested in sustainable living? Explore the rural Greek lifestyle in the small and sublime Island location of Lipsi - virtually undiscovered by tourists and with only 700 inhabitants - an idyllic setting and a rare opportunity for those who appreciate authenticity and want to experience a unique and traditional way of life. The variety of ...
Knowledge Must is composed of highly qualified experts that eqquiped with the necessary knowledge, experience, diversity, and passion to provide our client with the best customized solutions to achieve their individual objectives. We assist students, professionals, and organizations to successfully cross cultural boundaries to and from India and China At Knowledge Must we know that managing int...
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If you're looking to experience the world, climb aboard. Since 1993, Broadreach has taken over 12,000 students on adventures abroad for middle school, high school and college students. Prepare for hands-on experience, trying new things, making lifelong friends and having amazing adventures while earning a pile of certifications as proof of your achievements. The world awaits!
Alliance Abroad Group has 48 programs in 13 different locations. Programs are offered in Australia, Spain, Costa Rica, England, Peru, Chile, South Africa, China, Argentina, Guatemala, India, Ireland, and Ecuador.
Our vision is to support the work of local community organizations in developing countries through the placement of international volunteers. We believe that local communities are in the best position to determine their needs, and we provide volunteers to help them achieve their goals.
GapGuru - Work, Volunteer, Travel Overseas has 3 programs in 1 location. Programs are offered in India
Volunteer in Nepal – Join us for Medical Trek Nepal. If you are a medical professional or medical student, we need your help. In Nepal, healthcare can be nonexistent for those living in rural villages. In Nepal, people often go years suffering from illnesses or discomforts that are easily cured with basic medical care. The problem is, they have no way to get to hospitals or clinics in the l...
The best choice for active and adventurous teenagers, our campus-style programme has lessons and accommodation at a 4-star resort. Students make the most of Malta's excellent weather and sea with a water-based activity programme. Learn English, stay active and have a great time! Course * General English: 20 lessons(45 mins each) per week * International classes * Max. 15 stude...
Come join us in the tropics this winter for a full immersion experience in the country of Costa Rica. This puts you literally at the dinner table with a Costa Rican family. Live with them, see where they work, and let them proudly show you their country. Visits rain forests and volunteer while also experiencing the thrilling adventure excursions that the country has to offer. Our tours ...
PADIN Language and Cultural Immersion program promotes and enhances language studies and intercultural exchange aimed at developing long-term international relations and understanding, and exposing our program participants to the tourist sites. PADIN offices organize home stays for groups and individuals who wish to learn and build upon their French language, English language, or any local ...
VISIONS assists organizations that serve under-resourced communities. Participants are challenged to grow thoughtfully and intentionally within a community of peers and adult leaders. Through service work and dynamic experience, VISIONS offers new perspectives and deep learning while working for and with under-resourced communities.
BridgeEdu has 44 programs in 21 different locations. Programs are offered in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, China and 16 other countries.
Based in the spring city of Kunming but expanding to other cities as Guiyang (Guizhou province) or Shenzhen (Guangdong province), Homestay China is offering its unique, newly developed Homestay Student Program. Being a Homestay Student means to live with a Chinese family without paying fees! In return, Homestay Students are expected to teach the family's kid English as a "training friend". This...
UltimateOz is a work & travel specialist for students and working holiday travellers visiting Australia. We have been providing Australian arrival packages for almost 20 years, working with many of the world's leading working holiday organisations.
Are you up for the challenge? Spend your winter in the beautiful Buenos Aires! This programs aims to: 1) Understand the topography, geography and culture of the Argentinean part of Patagonia 2) Exhibit the ability to hike in Patagonian mountains 3) Exhibit the ability to function within a group 4) Experience and reflect on service learning with a remote village in Patagonia 5) Reflect on a...
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