How Adventure Travelers Have Changed Over the Past Decade

The Adventure Travel Trade Association in partnership with Outside Magazine and researchers at East Carolina University have updated their survey research with 8,000 adventure travelers originally conducted in 2006.

There are some interesting new trends emerging in consumer’s interests around their interests, personalities and what they seek in an adventure experience:

The Adventure Traveler Personality

  • Adventure travelers tend to see themselves as kind, efficient, organized, and imaginative.
  • They enjoy working on new ideas and consider themselves to be intellectual and when they travel, they seek new experiences and enriching their base of knowledge.
  • They report interest in learning about the traditions of indigenous cultural communities.
  • They work hard to keep their bodies healthy.
  • They report being moderately altruistic and sometimes giving to others.

Activities of Interest

  • 92 percent of consumers reporting they have participated in this activity and 52 percent indicating they plan to in the future. Following hiking, popular activities include stand-up paddle boarding, visiting historical sites, getting to know the locals, and cultural activities.
  • The top 10 “adventure travel” activities were hiking, backpacking, trekking, kayaking, rafting, rock/mountain climbing (formerly #1), mountain biking, scuba diving, caving, and camping. Canoeing didn’t make the cut in 2016 but was in the top five activities in 2006.

Destinations of Interest

  • In 2016, the region topping consumer’s list was New Zealand.
  • Following New Zealand, popular regions (in order of priority) were Australia, South America, South Pacific, Western Europe, Central America, North America, Central Europe, the Caribbean, and Africa. South America has moved steadily up in desirability and Central Europe is new to consumer’s lists since 2007 with 44% indicating they want to travel there.

At AdventureWomen, we love following the trends in travel interests among women. Keep us posted about your latest ideas about upcoming travel trends on Facebook!