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The dangerous dozen: Travel challenges for 2017

Bored of the same old resolutions and keen to try something new in 2017? We’ve picked 12 activities to get you thinking, biking, moving and making

The dangerous dozen: Travel challenges for 2017
Snowkite on an iced lake. Credit: Getty

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1. Mountain bike in an epic landscape

Get off the trails in Torridon in the Scottish Highlands. Go independently or book a guided tour — WildBike pioneers new expeditions here each year. From £685 for six nights. 

2. Track wild pumas

Join Steppes Travel’s new Puma Tracking tour in Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park. 11 days from £3,995. 

3. Try cat skiing & more

Check into the five-star Gostlin-Keefer Lake Lodge in British Columbia to explore 86,500 acres of mountainous, forested terrain and ski untouched snow at dawn. 

4. Visit a car-free island

Breathe deeply on Sark, in the Channel Islands, where bikes and horse-drawn carriages are the main mode of transport.

5. Snowkite on an iced lake

Switzerland’s Grand Hotel Kronenhof offers bespoke snowkite packages on frozen lakes. Go in February and you can also watch the 2017 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in nearby St Moritz. 

Mountain bike in Scotland. Credit: Getty

Mountain bike in Scotland. Credit: Getty

6. Learn the art of bushcraft

Challenge yourself on Ray Mears’ three-day Woodlore Bush Chef course, learning to cook dishes outdoors. From £450. 

7. Meet with a monk

Try a temple stay in South Korea and learn about a host of Buddhist rituals, including meditating and dining in complete silence. 

8. Run on new surfaces

New for 2017 is the Serengeti Half-Marathon Experience. Spot the Big Five on safari, then set off on the big race (21km and 5km routes available). From £2,299 for an eight-day trip. gadventures.co.uk

9. Take a dip in the sea

Get active with coastal swims and island-hopping tours around Croatia, Greece, the Isles of Scilly and the Inner Hebrides with SwimTrek. A week in Croatia from £790 without flights. 

10. Learn a martial art

Mixed martial arts is booming in popularity, with Rio de Janeiro a mecca for those wanting to learn the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu style of fighting. Try it yourself or watch the pros battle it out at MGM Grand Las Vegas Hotel & Casino

11. Join a safari after dark

Heading to South Africa? See more than just the Big Five. Take a night tour to spot the elusive aardvark at Samara Private Game Reserve

12. Explore tectonic plates

Slip into the Silfra fissure in Iceland’s Þingvellir National Park, a crack between the North American and Eurasian continents. Snorkelling tour: ISK17,900 (£127); diving: ISK39,900 (£282). scuba.is

Published in the Jan/Feb 2017 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)