A thrilling vacation brings you amazing joy while experiencing it and long after your return. Yet, you don’t have to spend tens of thousands of dollars to reap the benefits of an awe-inspiring getaway. Furthermore, even if summer days are approaching an end, there’s still time to explore, renew, refresh, and reinvigorate. Or make plans for later.
10 Ways a Thrilling Vacation Brings You Amazing Joy
What comes to mind when you envision a thrilling vacation? Is it spelunking in underground caves? Climbing Yosemite’s Half-Dome? Learning to yodel in the Austrian Alps after incredible downhill skiing? Snorkeling in the Bahamas? Exploring the Mayan ruins of Tulum or Chichen Itza?
While these are unforgettable destinations, embarking on a thrilling vacation doesn’t have to involve anything so exotic. The thrill comes from following your curiosity, pushing yourself to your limits, expanding your skills, learning new things, experiencing various cultures, pleasing your palate, and much more.
Create Indelible Memories with a Thrilling Vacation
When embarking on a thrilling vacation, think about travel destinations that fill you with awe. For example, I’ve been to the Grand Canyon more than a dozen times, and it always fills me with incredible and near-overpowering emotions. For one thing, the vast grandeur reminds me how insignificant trivial matters are. The majestic scenery reinforces my love of nature and appreciation for the evolution of terrestrial landforms.
Also, pay attention to the vivid details of your thrilling vacation experiences. I’ve caught my breath in Utah’s Canyonlands at the starry sky and shooting stars at night. The quiet and the calm made this a highlight of a trip filled with hiking slot canyons, whitewater rafting, group barbeques, sing-alongs by a campfire, and many other exciting activities.
Capture the moments with photos. You can spend the evening posting highlights to your family and friends or on social media. This creates a visual and historical record you can refer to again. These are incredible memories of how this thrilling vacation brings you amazing joy.
Engage Others in Conversation
Vacations are a time to relax and unwind. But they’re also a time to get out there and be social. To be happy and feel joy, you need social relationships. Research shows that happy people have solid relationships.
Start chatting when meeting someone new on a hike in the canyon, during a daylong snorkeling trip, on a sightseeing excursion, or participating in a guided tour. It’s easy to do. Keep the conversation casual and light. Listen and make eye contact.
If the interaction pleases both parties, this can provide opportunities for more in-depth conversations and activities.
The joyful emotions you feel during a thrilling vacation are more intense when you share them with others. This makes the trip more exciting and increases joy. It also helps you relax.
Go for Novel Trips that Spark Learning and Adventure
Try something new for your next vacation. Instead of returning to favorite locations, aim for a destination with learning opportunities. Yet be sure to include familiar activities so you’re not overly stressed out by how different it is there. For example, suppose you don’t speak the language. In that case, you’ll be troubled by an inability to understand what others are saying – or appreciate signage, travel information, and trip highlights explained by guides.
Experience cultures in foreign countries or visit states in your country you’ve never been to. This helps broaden your knowledge and increase a sense of personal accomplishment. Examples include:
- Cultural activities
- Seeing how wine is made
- Learning how glassblowers create works of art
- Attending a gourmet cooking school
- Participating in an archaeological dig
- Delight in whitewater rafting with the family
The point of thrilling vacations that bring you amazing joy is to expand your horizons. Venture beyond what feels comfortable but not so far out that you are terrified.
Increase Travel Frequency for that Thrilling Vacation
Did you know that people who travel more frequently feel more life satisfaction than those who rarely take a vacation? There are many reasons why travel brings happiness and joy, and it’s important to remember that taking a break is not a luxury, but it is a necessity.
Travel, especially taking a thrilling vacation, helps:
- Elevate mood
- Improve life satisfaction
- Leave work behind
- Enjoy a break from everyday life stress
- Be available for personal relaxation
- Improve or deepen relationships with partners and loved ones
- Connect with something bigger than ourselves
- Experience world wonders
- Revitalize, refresh, and rejuvenate
- Rekindle a sense of purpose
Add Several Weekends or Short Getaways During the Year
Only some have three weeks to a month of uninterrupted or available vacation time to take a thrilling trip. That doesn’t mean you can’t take several well-planned and much-needed short getaways throughout the year. You can still attend that blockbuster concert in another city, go for a weekend camping trip in the mountains, get in some deepsea fishing, attend a fashion show, or helicopter in to ski the glaciers.
You won’t leave work too long and reap the benefits of a short, thrilling vacation. Plus, anticipating planning more trips this year is a bonus.
Strive for Experiences, Not Things
Research in 2020 showed that individuals get more happiness from experiences than material things. In every purchase category, when the same person consumed an experience, they derived more pleasure than buying an item. This was true regardless of the cost.
- Consider how you feel when you engage in a thrilling vacation experience, like horseback riding in a wilderness park or feeling an adrenaline rush during downhill skiing on a black diamond course.
- How does that compare with the Hermes handbag or new designer jeans?
You treasure and remember the experience long after the trip ends. The handbag or jeans are merely possessions. You may be happy now but don’t remember them fondly for years afterward.
Factor in Daily Activities that Get You Moving
A cliff walk may be out of the question for some travelers, but it’s on my list. Ditto exploring sandstone outcroppings with petroglyphs. What these have in common is rigorous exercise. The same holds for learning to cross-country ski and many other activities you can do on vacation.
- When you do things that get you moving, you increase the production of endorphins, the feel-good neurotransmitters in the brain.
- Exercise increases serotonin and dopamine, making you happy and calm.
- Furthermore, this production of neurotransmitters and hormones positively affects energy, well-being, mood, and memory.
If you want joy, happiness, resilience, and overall contentment, get moving on your next thrilling vacation.
Look Forward to Creating Magic with a Thrilling Vacation
Some of the world’s most beautiful spots are in Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, the Caribbean, the Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, and the Maldives. What these have in common is extraordinary underwater exploration, diving, and snorkeling.
Imagine crystal clear water, hundreds to thousands of species of fish surrounding you, and unparalleled underwater experiences that excite you. Pair the adventure with shore lunch, relaxing on tropical beaches, and returning to land invigorated and thrilled beyond words.
Now, this is the way to create magic with a thrilling vacation. Best of all, you can look forward to planning this trip and get even more excited.
Cultivate Your Imagination
For some travelers, visiting the world’s most acclaimed museums to delight in artists’ masterpieces is the hallmark of a thrilling trip. Others find intense pleasure in immersing themselves in cultures so foreign that the only way to experience them is to go there. Experts agree that getting the most out of your vacation requires determining your most appealing travel motivation.
- History and heritage
- Intensive learning
- Sharing time with family and friends
Broaden Your Culinary Tastes and Delight the Palate
As someone who loves cooking and eating, vacation is only complete with many opportunities to sample local cuisine. Of course, I want to visit some of the most highly recommended restaurants, but I also want to eat where the locals hang out. Mom-and-pop chefs catering to crowds of dedicated customers prepared some of the best food I’ve ever eaten on vacation.
For example, when vacationing in Kauai, we discovered a restaurant down the dirt road from the dock where the fishermen sold their day’s fresh catch off the sides of their boats. Every day, the menu featured the best of that day’s haul. I’d never eaten grouper, sea bass, barracuda, wahoo, ono, or other fish. What a thrilling culinary experience!