Celebrating 50 years of Adventure Travel

How to Find the Perfect Adventure for Your Activity Level

September 10, 2019 by MT Sobek

As adventure travelers ourselves, we know that everyone’s definition of “adventure” is  different. Our interests and aspirations vary, and what might be a demanding challenge to one person could be a walk in the park to the next. That’s why our programs are created by our destination experts who have first-hand knowledge of the route, the terrain, and the type, duration and frequency of activities offered. Based on that knowledge, each itinerary is assigned an activity level ranging from 1 to 5 and includes a detailed description of the trip’s physical demands—both overall and as part of the daily descriptions. So, whether you’re looking for an easy journey at a relaxed pace, a balance between physical activity and culture or wildlife, or a chance to push yourself on a hardcore trek at high altitude, you can easily find the perfect adventure.

LEVEL 1 

This is our most relaxed style of travel and previous adventure experience is not required, though you should come prepared with a spirit of adventure and flexible attitude towards the weather. Activities on Level 1 adventures may include game drives, canoe rides or river floats, cruising, or walks of up to 30 minutes on flat terrain. Trail conditions may include cobblestones, pavement, or gravel paths. On some days you may mix a few activities and be “on the go” for much for the time but downtime will be available to recharge. Trip Examples: Antarctica Fly & Cruise, Botswana Flying Safari

LEVEL 2

The Level 2 adventures are active trips appropriate for most travelers. Previous hiking, kayaking or other adventure travel experience is not necessary, but a good level of fitness is recommended. Activities may include short hikes or walks up to 3 hours at elevations below 6,000 feet, river rafting on Class I-II rapids, cultural touring or adventure cruising. Like Level 1, it’s good to have a spirit of adventure and a flexible mindset.  Trip examples: Treasures of Iran, Classic Galapagos Adventure Cruise

LEVEL 3

Our Level 3s make up the majority of MT Sobek adventures. These typically include 3 to 6 hours of physical activity per day, such as rafting or wilderness camping. Eight- to 10-mile hikes can reach up to 10,000 feet and may include some steep ascents or descents. River rafting trips include Class III rapids. Previous adventure travel experience is not a requirement of these trips but is often recommended, ensuring that you get the most out of your trip. Trip examples: Cataract Canyon 7-Day Rafting Adventure, Hiking Ireland North to South

LEVEL 4

The Level 4 trips are designed for experienced adventurers seeking full days of activity and a higher level of physical challenge. Hikes and treks of up to 14 miles and 4,000 feet of elevation gains and losses cover steep, sometimes rugged terrain, potentially into areas of exposure and elevations exceeding 10,000 feet. River rafting trips include Class IV-V rapids. We recommended training for these adventures and give our guests tips on how best to prepare. Trip examples: Hiker’s Patagonia, Tour du Mont Blanc

LEVEL 5

These are our most demanding trips for guests seeking a physical challenge. Trips include trekking without vehicle support over steep, often rugged terrain at elevations over 10,000 feet. Daily hikes of up  to 12 hours or more may include substantial altitude gains and losses into remote areas of wilderness. River rafting trips include Class IV-V rapids and areas where portaging is needed. Previous experience, as well as a completed physician’s certificate, is required. Training is a must! Trip Examples: Summit Kilimanjaro, K2 Base Camp Trek

It’s also good to know that some trips are rated Level 4 or 5 due to a combination of weather changes, rugged accommodation and daily mileage—the mental toughness bumps it up a notch.

Use our Adventure Finder to select the right activity level for you!

About the Author MT Sobek

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