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Outdoor activities are the best way to experience the world’s most beautiful and unique natural settings.
The European continent, with its stunning diversity of landscapes that go from the imposing Alps to the sun-drenched Mediterranean islands, provides countless of year-round options to engage on thrilling adventures.
There’s a lot to be explored in Europe beyond world-class architecture, art, and cuisine. Outdoor trips offer a chance of unplugging from the bustling and crowded cities and discovering less-traveled destinations surrounded by pure nature. They are also an invaluable opportunity to bond with your loved ones and create long-lasting memories.
Hiking, mountaineering, canyoning, rock climbing, and skiing are just a few of the many outdoor activities you can enjoy on your European trip. Whether you are planning an active family holiday, trying to hone your skills in a specific sport, or willing to venture on an adrenaline-fueled getaway with friends, you will find a recreational activity that suits your plans.
Keep reading our list of the top 10 outdoor activities you can do in Europe and start dreaming of your next adventure:
This is the classic mountaineering adventure in Europe. Rising at 4808 m, Mont Blanc is the highest peak in the Alps and one of the most popular mountain ascents in the world.
While it doesn’t entail many technical challenges, it requires previous experience and acclimatization. Going with a guide is highly recommended.
The best time to climb Mont Blanc is between June and September. The mountain town of Chamonix is the usual starting point for this trip and one of the most exciting destinations for outdoor activities in Europe.
A via ferrata is a protected climbing route that uses steel cables, ladders, suspension bridges, and metal steps to help inexperienced climbers reach high altitudes in a safe way. These routes were born in the Dolomites, a stunning mountain range in the north of Italy, during World War I.
Nowadays, numerous via ferrata routes have been built in Europe, allowing tourists to enjoy an exhilarating mountain adventure. The Dolomites are one of the best places to enjoy this outdoor activity, with options ranging from family-friendly routes to more challenging options.
The Mediterranean island of Corsica is one of the top canyoning destinations in Europe. Its wild rocky gorges and amazing pools of crystal water are the best scenery to enjoy this aquatic and adrenaline-fueled activity, which consists of jumping, swimming, rappelling, and sliding through natural toboggans.
Canyoning can be adapted to all levels and makes a wonderful outdoor activity to enjoy with a group of family or friends.
If you like skiing in wild and remote destinations, ski touring in Norway should be at the top of your bucket list. Whether you choose to head to the Lyngen Alps, the Lofoten Islands or Finnmark (one of the country’s best-kept secrets), you are likely to have a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Norway is one of the few places in the world where you can ski right to the sea. Home to breathtaking landscapes, it is also one of the top places to enjoy the surreal Northern Lights.
The so-called ‘land of ice and fire’ is certainly one of the most spectacular places to visit in Europe. Brimming with otherworldly landscapes, Iceland is a paradise for hikers and outdoor lovers.
The Laugavegur trail is one of the most epic hiking adventures in the country, going through fields of lava, glaciers, hot springs and staggering mountains.
If you are up for an off-the-beaten-track adventure, you should definitely consider heliskiing. From all the amazing destinations for heliskiing in Europe, the Aosta Valley stands out as one of the most scenics. There are different regions to explore, from the Mont Blanc massif above Courmayeur, to Gresonney and the Monte Rosa massif. The peak season for heliskiing in the Aosta Valley is from December to April.
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