When was the last time you rounded up the guys, packed your bags and hit the road? It’s the type of trip that doesn’t happen often enough, for myriad reasons.
And, before you say something, it’s not about going without the partners, it’s about going with the guys. There’s a time and a place for everything, and now’s the time to take, or at least start planning, your next trip.
“Adventure seems to be on the wish-list of most of our male travellers,” says Divan Viljoen, Flight Centre Youth & Adventure Marketing Campaign Manager. “Close to home, destinations like the Wild Coast, Victoria Falls and Namibia are firm favourites, while further afield we see the US, Spain and New Zealand emerging as popular escapes for guys.”
Flight Centre spoke to some well-travelled men who share their top suggestions for their favourite great escapes for guys.
“It’s probably the most epic place you can go if you’re a guy that likes adventure, just like I do, because it’s got everything,” says Mike Eloff, who you might know as @thelawry on Instagram, where he enjoys a following of over 68k and shares his wanderlust-worthy travel pics.
Located east of Madagascar in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, the diminutive island is a pound-for-pound champ when it comes to adventure per square meter. Its volcanoes, mountains, collapsed calderas and canyons are covered in trails and hiking routes waiting to be explored, “Réunion is just so epic in terms of adventure”. It’s also close to South Africa, you don’t need a visa to visit, and even though the currency is the euro, it’s still very affordable, says Mike.
The whole island has a laidback vibe with a distinct French influence. Sound familiar? Perhaps like Mauritius or the Seychelles? “It's not the same. Reunion is different. It's got that very French flavour when it comes to the food, but then it's also got the island side of things, and if you like your rum, it’s got that too.” And then there’s the climate, that’s ever-changing and never the same in two places. “Everywhere you go in Reunion the climate is different. It's like a different microclimate everywhere - drive 20km and you're in a completely different climate.”
Because not everyone can travel for a living, if you can only go to one place on the island it has to be Mafate. “It’s situated inside one of these cirques, with all these massive mountains around you, you can't drive there, you can only hike there or get there by helicopter. So, there're no cars or any of that nonsense there. It's just this beautiful, beautiful village in the middle of these amazing mountains, that are actually old, extinct volcanoes.”
I've just published a new blog post about how amazing this super active volcano on Reunion Island actually is. Taken on my recent trip to the island with @reuniontourisme. Link in my bio or you can visit: www.lifeofmike.co.za #LifeOfMike #GoToReunion #ReunionIsland #PitonDeLaFournaise
USA Road Trip
Not the island type? Stick to the mainland and take on the endless asphalt of the USA’s road network. “I did a three-week road trip in western US, camping and visiting several national parks from Yellowstone to Yosemite which was incredible.” That’s what designer and traveller, Jared Kohn, suggests. His travel-inspired illustrations have garnered him over 52k followers on Instagram, where you’ll find him working under the handle @mountain_lines. “I am very much a nature guy and tend to go for options that offer me the best in that.”
This morning I was driving into work and the sun was rising just behind the mountain peaks across the bay. It created this incredible silhouetted peak and gradient sky. This made me think about how beauty can be displayed in many forms - that same peak would be equally as beautiful in all its detail, contours and intricacies in the full afternoon sun but we can appreciate in a completely different manner as well - in its majestic simplicity. I guess that’s a great lesson in design. Follow my new project launching soon @thegreatbreak
Jared also suggests more regular “microadventures”, a movement started by English adventurer, author and motivational speaker, Alistair Humphreys. Microadventures are overnight outdoor adventures that are "small and achievable, for normal people with real lives". As Jared put it, it’s “a great way for guys to break away from the 9-5.”
Island-style living like Mike or an epic road-trip like Jared, what’s your calling? As far as Flight Centre Youth & Adventure is concerned, you’ve only got two questions to answer when planning your Great Escape with your mates - who’s coming with, and when are you leaving?