Women’s adventure travel has surged in popularity recently, offering a unique blend of exploration, empowerment, and camaraderie.

Gone are the days of women’s travel being synonymous with spa retreats and beach lounging. Nowadays, it’s all about scaling the Andes with a sunburn that maps your journey, Or finding your zen in Southeast Asia while trying to explain in sign language that you’re vegetarian.

From the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas to the serene landscapes of Bali, women seek adventures that challenge them physically and spiritually while providing a safe and supportive environment.

I’ve trekked, kayaked, and occasionally tripped over my own feet across the globe. With groups ranging from “This is what a 5-star tent looks like” to “I hope you like beans by the campfire.”

This guide is all about women’s adventure travel and how to become part of it yourself.

women's adventure travel

Women’s Adventure Travel

Understanding Women’s Adventure Travel

Women’s adventure travel is a travel style that caters to female travelers, focusing on experiences that foster personal growth, skill development, and cultural immersion.

Unlike traditional travel, these adventures are designed with women’s interests and safety in mind. They’re often led by female guides who understand the unique dynamics of women-only groups.

The beautiful benefits offer a safe space for women to challenge themselves, explore new cultures, and form deep connections with fellow adventurers.

Why Choose Women’s Adventure Travel?

The motivations behind this trend are as diverse as the possible destinations.

Many women seek adventure travel for the empowerment and confidence that come from navigating new terrains and cultures.

The sense of community and understanding within female-led groups also plays a crucial role, providing a supportive network that emboldens travelers to step out of their comfort zones.

Safety, too, is a significant consideration, with women’s adventure travel offering a secure environment to explore the world.

What I like most about traveling with just women is the sense of freedom to be yourself, not found with mixed travel. Women seem more inclined to be themselves when they are among other women.

What Are Women’s Adventure Travel Options?

Picture everything from yoga retreats, where you’re more likely to achieve a zen state laughing off a misplaced pose than perfecting your downward dog, to safaris where the wildest experience might be the stories shared around the campfire.

Your travel options include guided tours, retreats, and expeditions tailored to an enormous array of interests and fitness levels. They might range from hiking and backpacking trips, cultural immersion tours, wildlife safaris, yoga, and wellness retreats to outdoor skills workshops.

If you’re thinking of something particular, odds are there’s a trip planned for it.

Based on 2024 reviews, the top women’s adventure travel companies offering unique, empowering, and highly rated experiences include the following.

Wild Women Expeditions

Wild Women Expeditions crafts adventures that span continents and cater to a variety of interests, from kayaking and cycling to yoga and safaris.

Friends of mine often highlight the playful, fun nature of these trips. They love the deep, lasting community spirit among adventurous women​​.

Adventures in Good Company

With a focus on outdoor experiences, this company offers over 100 itineraries worldwide, catering to women of all ages. Tours are led by female wilderness guides, and the company is highly well-rated, noted for its repeat clientele and high satisfaction.

Activities range from horseback riding in Colorado to exploring the natural wonders of Guyana, all designed for small groups to enhance the experience​​.

Intrepid Travel’s Women’s Expeditions

Although not exclusively for women, Intrepid Travel offers a select portfolio of Women’s Expeditions that have proven highly popular. These tours, led by local women, offer immersive cultural experiences in destinations like Peru, India, and Morocco.

I know several women who’ve taken their tours, and every one of them has absolutely loved it. The focus is on connecting with local female cultures and supporting women-led businesses, which resonates well with travelers looking for meaningful interactions​​.

Explorer Chick

Specializing in authentic adventure travel for women, Explorer Chick offers trips that include a variety of activities and challenges, accompanied by a supportive community atmosphere.

The guides’ emphasis on knowledge, kindness, and fun, along with well-organized itineraries, receive high praise from participants​​.

These companies are known for their commitment to creating empowering, safe, and memorable travel experiences for women. They cater to a wide range of interests and fitness levels, ensuring something for every adventurous spirit.

Whether you’re looking for a physical challenge or a deep dive into new cultures alongside like-minded women, these companies offer it all, with the reassurance of positive feedback from past travelers.

Sticker Shock!

Fair warning, opting for top-tier adventure companies might require you to sell a kidney. But who needs two when you’re living on the edge?

For those of us whose spirit of adventure isn’t matched by our wallets, fear not. The world of adventure is vast.

More Affordable Women’s Adventure Travel Options

There are other options if you’re willing to spend some time and effort looking into what might work for you.

Local Meetups and Social Media Groups

Joining local meetups or social media groups can connect you with other women travelers in your destination of choice, as well as smaller women-led companies that offer trips for a significantly reduced price relative to the larger companies. 

Platforms like Meetup.com and Facebook groups are good places to start. These gatherings can be a great way to find travel companions and get local travel advice.

I’ve participated in a few of these and have had mixed experiences. These smaller companies are usually led by women who are just starting out and are in the process of gaining experience leading groups and organizing adventures.

Having said that, you need to be more open-minded about things not going exactly as planned.

Volunteer Travel Programs

Volunteering abroad can be a rewarding and affordable way to travel. Some organizations organize women-only volunteer trips, which can offer a sense of purpose while exploring new places.

Lastly, Journeywoman lists 50 and over women-only travel opportunities, including projects that support women’s education, health, and entrepreneurship worldwide. This is a list of possibilities and price ranges, so don’t be turned away if your first search isn’t what you expected.

Remember, the key to finding affordable options is to research and connect with communities of women travelers who share your travel style and interests. Safety should always be a priority. Look for options that have good, recent reviews and are recommended by other women travelers.

What’s the Best Women’s Adventure Travel Company?

I don’t think there is a best, not one single company that suits everyone. Fortunately, there are many wonderful ones to choose from.

How to Prepare for a Women’s Adventure Travel Trip?

Choosing the right adventure is a personal journey. Consider your physical abilities, interests, and what you wish to gain from the experience.

Preparation is key, from selecting appropriate gear to building up physical endurance. Most adventure travel companies offer detailed pre-trip guidance, helping you prepare for your journey.

Traveling with anyone other than yourself will raise a few issues. It’s no different when women travel together, except that the more people there are, the greater the odds of something coming up.

Common issues include differing interests, budget constraints, and varying energy levels. To minimize these, establish clear communication and expectations beforehand to yourself and no one else.

Set a budget range you’re comfortable with, and allow personal time.

Prioritizing open-mindedness and compromise ensures a harmonious and enjoyable trip for all.

Building a Community of Adventurous Women

One of the most profound aspects of women’s adventure travel is the community it builds. Traveling with a group of like-minded women fosters a sense of belonging and support that is often cited as a trip highlight.

It’s about finding your tribe of women who don’t bat an eyelid when you suggest a pre-dawn hike for the perfect sunrise or who understand that a shared silence in a breathtaking location is worth a thousand words.

This sense of community extends beyond the trip itself, creating a network of adventurous women who understand and inspire each other.

Safety Tips and Considerations

Safety remains paramount, with reputable companies implementing comprehensive measures to protect travelers.

From ensuring safe accommodations to providing trained guides familiar with the local area and conditions, these precautions allow women to explore confidently.

Travelers are encouraged to research and choose reputable companies, remain aware of their surroundings, and respect local customs for a safe and enriching experience.

Always travel with the idea that no one else is responsible for your safety and happiness. Be informed and be prepared.

FAQs

What is the most adventurous place to visit?

Antarctica offers the ultimate adventure. With its remote, icy landscape, unique wildlife, and activities such as ice-climbing, kayaking among icebergs, and visiting research stations. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime journey to the planet’s final frontier.

What are the two types of adventure travel?

Adventure travel can be divided into “hard” adventures, involving physically demanding activities like mountaineering and white-water rafting, and “soft” adventures. The second include activities like hiking and cultural tours, appealing to a broader range of physical abilities.

How do I plan an adventure vacation?

Start by choosing your adventure type (hard or soft), then select a destination that matches your interest and skill level. Research and book with reputable companies specializing in adventure travel. Prepare physically, pack appropriately, and consider travel insurance. Finally, familiarize yourself with local customs and environmental practices to ensure a respectful and sustainable visit.

What is one example of adventure travel?

Trekking to Everest Base Camp in Nepal is an example of adventure travel. It offers stunning Himalayan views, challenging treks, and the opportunity to immerse in Sherpa culture.

Final Thoughts on Women’s Adventure Travel

Women’s adventure travel is about embracing the unknown, laughing in the face of mishaps, and discovering that the most powerful journey is the one that leads to discovering your own strength, resilience, and the joy of new friendships.

So, lace up, pack your sense of humor and sunscreen, and make adventures that you’ll laugh about for years to come. Because at the end of the day, the best stories are those shared between friends over a campfire, under the stars, in the middle of nowhere.