Many people dream of challenging adventures that take them all around the globe. Few people actually go out and do it.
Admittedly, seeing more of the world is still just on my bucket list. (But the intention to travel more and continually challenge my own perspective is one of the reasons I started this blog).
One of my favorite ways to spend “me-time” is to immerse myself in the stories of those people who have successfully transformed the dream of adventurous travel into reality.
When it comes to real-life adventurers of the 21st century, one of my favorites is Alastair Humphreys.
Alastair has a biography to rival any grand fairy tale of adventure: a 4-year bike trip around the planet, a race across the Sahara desert, rowing across the English channel, walking and packrafting across Iceland.
What does one do after all that?
Alastair turned his attention to what has become a concept in travel and exploration that I absolutely love: the “microadventure”
Microadventures for Me & You
What is a microadventure?
As Alastair describes it in the preview for his 2011 book Microadventures: Local Discoveries for Great Escapes:
[A microadventure is] close to home, cheap, simple, short and 100% guaranteed to refresh your life. A microadventure takes the spirit of a big adventure and squeezes it into a day or even a few hours. The point of a microadventure is that you don’t need lots of time and money to meet a new challenge.
For Alastair, microadventures have included challenges like climbing trees and going for late night walks to photograph the full moon. As he says:
The photographs are nothing special, and nor are the paths I am walking. But each 30-second exposure forces me to stand still and wait. To become patient. To stare at the moon as it slips now behind a chilly veil of haze. To hear a shallow stream before I see it. To smell damp clay as I enter the fields at the darker edge of town.
What makes these experiences invigorating is that they’re a push to experience the world differently, with more presence and heightened awareness. And they’re also push to show up in the world as a different person, as a more heightened version of yourself.
Best of all, these kind of adventures — and all their benefits — are available to anyone, anywhere.
How Will You Challenge Yourself?
If you’re like me, you’ve dreamed of the adventures that await you at the far reaches of the globe.
However, what I’ve learned from real-life global adventurers like Alastair Humphreys is that you don’t need to travel thousands of miles from home to experience the promise of adventure.
Sometimes all it takes is seeing your own backyard in a new and unusual way.
So, I’m curious: how will you challenge yourself to find the adventure that’s available right around the corner?