7 fun things to do in the desert
(CNN) – Scorching days, freezing nights, a little precious water and dangerous reptiles for the company.
It’s no surprise that deserts are some of the most intimidating places on Earth. Some may think it is best to avoid them.
Namib Desert, Namibia: Horseback Riding
Get in the saddle and truly experience Namibia.
Hoberman Collection / UIG / Getty Images
Galloping in the world’s oldest desert region is certainly not for travelers with a weak heart or weak thighs.
If remote landscapes are your thing, however, a little man-beast bonding in the Namib Desert should fill your Instagram feed for a month.
Walks can take you through the bush savannah and Hakos Mountains, passing canyons, coastlines and oases and ending on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean in Swakopmund.
Along the way you will see wildlife in its natural environment: mountain zebra, oryx, ostrich, springbok and maybe even desert warthogs.
Lahbab Desert, United Arab Emirates: Dune bashing
A place to drive in a straight line will get you in trouble.
Martin Rose / Bongarts / Getty Images
You and your friends can climb into a rugged 4×4 and let your driver take on the power of the sand dunes of the Lahbab Desert for you.
All you have to do is sit still and keep your eyes peeled – it’s not easy when your stomach is rolling, sheets of sand spraying against the windows, and your driver is pumping smelly, upbeat hits to leave. of tiny speakers.
Warning: don’t go into this one with a hangover.
If you’re even more daring, try skydiving in Dubai (see the video at the top of this story for more on this).
Sonoran Desert, Arizona: Hiking Tour
Hike through a “living” desert.
If you want a less intense desert experience and the chance to get the most out of nature, you have to go to Arizona.
One of the most “alive” deserts in the world, a slow-paced hike through the Sonoran Desert allows you to see coyotes, road runners, mountain lions, zebra striped lizards and more. more amazing desert creatures, as well as what hike planners describe as a “botanical garden of desert plants.”
Some of the hikes through this area are more strenuous than others – you can choose a level that suits your endurance.
Usaka Desert, Peru: sandboarding
Sandboarding is similar to snowboarding but takes place on sand dunes.
Ricardo Ribas / SOPA Images / LightRocket / Getty Images
Snowboard? Wakeboarding? Do you think you did all the boards there?
Well, the last terrain you need to conquer on board is the desert. You can go sand surfing wherever there are sandy slopes.
All you need is a sandboard and a lot of determination – hitting the sand dunes after every run can be nerve-racking.
Many adventure companies rent boards and teach the basics on desert safaris so you can get up to speed with the sport.
The deserts of Nevada, United States: hang-gliding
What better place to gaze at the endless hilly landscapes of a Nevada desert than from above?
You won’t have to put up with intense heat, sandy winds, or grueling dune climbing to get a decent view – everything will be laid out under you.
There is an active hang-gliding scene in Nevada and plenty of centers that can get you off the ground. Don’t worry, you won’t just be strapped into a harness and kicked off the top of a hill. Or you can fly in tandem with an experienced hang glider pilot.
Thar Desert, India: Camel Race
Camel race during the desert festival in Jaisalmer, India.
Yousuf Tushar / LightRocket / Getty Images
The running camels look, in a word, demented. They have nothing of the elegant power of horses or the raw grace of big cats. Their legs part wildly to the sides, Bambi-style. And they always seem to be out of step.
But don’t be fooled by their awkward appearance. Camels can gallop up to 64 km / h (40 mph) in short gusts. During major racing events, large sums are often at stake.
Events take place in various deserts, but one of the most raging events is the Bikaner Camel Festival, which is held every January in the Thar Desert in northwest India. Here you will also see camel processions, drafts and competitions for the best decorated camel.
Sinai desert, Egypt: quad biking
Tourists ride quad bikes during part of a desert safari in Egypt.
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The quad may seem a little rough, but in fact, it’s a lot smoother to ride than it looks.