Adventure holidays on a budget


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The Independent Travel

Poolside lounging isn’t for everyone but neither is the considerable price tag that comes with many adventure sports.

If you’re after a holiday break with a little more get-up and go, here are three unlikely adventure holiday locations that won’t leave your face as red as your bank balance.

Ski holidays to Greece

When you think of holidays to Greece you think of spectacular ruins, white sandy beaches and blistering heat. One thing that might not spring to mind is skiing – but such activities do exist in this historically rich country.

Choosing to ignore the skiing options in Greece should be done at your peril, as the land credited with the creation of democracy also provides us with some of the best winter sport resorts in Europe.

Most are situated in the north of the country and are limited to the winter months – but this shouldn’t act as a deterrent.

The combination of Greek history, culture and cuisine with top-class skiing, makes a trip to Greece one not to be missed and, as a lesser known ski destination, Greece is also void of the cutthroat competition associated with better-known resorts and thus benefits from lower prices.

Water-sports in Portugal

Portugal may sometimes be overlooked for its larger neighbour Spain, but city breaks in Lisbon and Porto and beach holidays to Algarve are more than a match for the Spanish Costa del Sol and Barcelona.

And, when it comes to water-sports, Portugal is arguably one of the best locations in mainland Europe. Whether it’s wakeboarding, windsurfing or waterskiing, Portugal’s brisk winds from the Atlantic and beautiful beaches make it the ideal spot.

Add to that Portugal’s laid back lifestyle and you have a match made in heaven.

As the ‘Little Spain’ of Europe, you will find hoteliers and restaurants dropping their prices to wrestle visitors away from the likes of Madrid and Valencia. Best yet, the hotels in Portugal are some of the best in the world – meaning quality is not compromised for price.

This blend of immaculate beaches, crystal seas, stunning food and offbeat culture make it the ideal spot for your adventure holiday.

Hiking in Slovenia

If hiking is more your thing, then Europe’s numerous destinations will leave you spoilt for choice. Great hiking regions – such as the picturesque Lake District in England and the world-class scenery found at Jungfrau in Switzerland – are undeniably worth a visit, but where should you go if you’ve already discovered these treasures?

For a cheaper alternative that still delivers on the wow-factor, consider booking your next hiking trip to Slovenia.

Slovenia might be a tiny country (about half the size of Switzerland) but what it lacks in land mass it sure makes up for in height. It is also one of the greenest countries in the world, packed with beautifully preserved woodlands and areas of undisturbed natural beauty.

Interestingly, Slovenia boasts a unique blend of climates, which means you’re just as likely to find warm Mediterranean breezes blowing through the snowy mountain districts as you are colder gusts.

It’s not short of incredible hiking destinations either and the Julian Alps in the northwest corner boast an incredible blend of serene valleys and rugged limestone peaks.

Throw in some affordable accommodation and some of the friendliest locals in the world and you have all the ingredients for an outstanding adventure getaway.