Sipping drinks on a tropical beach is not a bad way to spend a week’s vacation. However, if you’re an athlete looking to stay active while on holiday, there’s no shortage of international destinations that will cater to your love for fitness. Whether you want an entire trip dedicated to the pursuit of your favorite sport, or if you’re simply looking for a few options for athletic activities interspersed with your beach time, consider these 5 unique vacation ideas.

Hiking in Tierra Del Fuego

Group of hikers on trail passing before Cuernos del Paine mountains, Torres del Paine National Park Chile

Tierra Del Fuego is an archipelago off the southern tip of mainland South America – Chile controls the western half of the main island, and Argentina controls the east. Tierra del Fuego National Park in Argentina is a hiker’s dream destination, boasting lush forests, the snow-capped peaks of the Andes mountains, miles of beautiful coastline and lots of wildlife. If you go, you can hire a car or taxi to drive the 10 kilometers from Ushuaia, which is the closest city. Or, take the End of the World train and be treated to stories about local history and sites along the way.

Guided Swimming Tours of Crete

crete-swim-tourIf the thought of 5 kilometers of open-water swimming per day gets your blood pumping in a good way, try a guided swimming tour of the Greek island of Crete. You’ll explore the impressive coastline and dramatic cliffs along one of Europe’s southernmost destinations. The waters are crystal clear and the surrounding area is chock-full of history – Crete has been occupied as far back as 3650 B.C. Swim tour operators like SwimTrek will provide tour guides and ensure your safety during your daily swims.

Running in Iceland

Iceland is a country of extremes running-in-icelandand truly is “The Land of Fire and Ice.” You’ll find glaciers right next to volcanic hot springs, powerful waterfalls and black sand landscapes. Running vacations are designed to help you explore Iceland on foot, take you off the beaten path and push you beyond the guidebooks. Companies like Run The World Adventures organize noncompetitive running adventures that challenge and reward you with well-earned experiences and sightseeing not available during the average vacation.

Cycling Alpe D’Huez

alpe-dhuezIf you’ve ever dreamed of riding in the peloton among your heroes of the Tour de France, a cycling tour of the classic climbs of the Alps is right up your alley. Cycling tour operators like Trek Travel have expert guides to take you over the climbs that will make you feel like a pro rider. Climbing Alpe D’Huez is on the tougher end of cycling tours of France, but you can also find more laid back trips that will take you cycling through French wine country in relative luxury.

Climbing the Dolomites

dolomitesThe Dolomites are part of the Southern Limestone Alps located in northeastern Italy. The Dolomites are dominated by big wall climbing, but you’ll find something for all skill levels represented in your group. Many of the classic routes in the area are easily accessible by a short walk from the closest road, which makes it easy to get your gear to the mountain. You’ll also be able to summit most climbs within the same day, which means camping is not required.



About The Author

Bill Conn is a travel enthusiast and writer at Scribewise. His favorite travel destinations include Shanghai, Vancouver, Munich – and of course, his home town of Philadelphia. Visit

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