Norway

Norway
Courtesy Did Adventure
Stay and Play in Scandinavia
This unsung country and its unrivaled terrain offer almost every brand of outdoor fun you can imagine. Cruise-ship passengers have long known the beauty of Norway’s fjords, but adventure sport has taken hold of late. Outfitters offer all manner of adrenal play, from heli-assisted mountain biking to (we kid you not) surfing. Oslo has miles of mountain bike trails, but the real treats are in beautiful towns such as Tromso, Molde, and Geirangerfjord, where you can hike among moose and birch, take a glacier walk, go climbing, or sea kayak a fjord. An added plus: Beneath the midnight sun, it doesn’t matter if it’s 8 a.m. or 3 a.m. 011-47-900-56-876, didadventure.no

Alaska

Alaska
Chris Englehardt
Climb a Really Big Tree
Alaska Mountain Guides offers fun around the globe, but one of its quirkiest offerings is the chance to climb and frolic in the canopy of 100-foot-tall spruce trees in Haines, Alaska, home to healthy old-growth forests. Since tree climbing is usually an add-on to other trips (just ask), why not sign up for their three-day sea kayak and humpback whale-watching adventure (luxe camping at Point Adolphus on Chichagof Island in the Tongass National Forest) and then go climb a tree? (800) 766-3396, alaskamountainguides.com

Northern Ireland

Spin, Paddle, and Bob
Northern Ireland doesn’t get much adventure press. Too bad, as it has one of the most dramatic coastlines in the world. Life Adventure Centre offers an intimate and occasionally heart-hammering view with a three-day Cycle and Sea Kayak trip that explores the coast and islands of Strangford Lough, home to stunning seascapes, picturesque villages, and, since all shouldn’t be fitness, lively pubs. After all, the Irish know how to have rollicking fun. Ask for a go at “coasteering” (that would be frolicking about cork-like in the surging surf wearing wet suit, life jacket, and helmet). 011-44-844-770-5477, onegreatadventure.com

France

France
Courtesy Discover France Adventures
Bike the Back Country, in Style
C’est vrai, this one is not easy but it’s guaranteed to be memorable. Discover France Adventures offers eight days of riding through the Pyrenees, from the Atlantic (Biarritz) to the Mediterranean (Collioure). You’ll ride 45 to 75 miles a day (expect to be in the saddle four to six hours and to climb an average of 7,000 feet daily), but you’ll cycle through what the French call “La France Profonde” (off the beaten path), with its medieval villages, colorful folk, and gloriously empty mountain heights. At day’s end, you’ll succor sore legs with sweet Basque wines and shellfish, then tumble into a soft bed. (800) 960-2221, cyclingclassics.com

Colorado

Colorado
Colorado Springs CVB
Pay a Visit to Playtown, U.S.A.
Colorado Springs’ offerings are ridiculous, and you don’t have to look far: 14,115-foot Pikes Peak looms right over town, and here alone you can hike (try the hike up Barr Trail to the Pikes Peak summit), climb, and mountain bike to your heart’s content. In town there are dozens of miles of multisport trails (ride or run the Santa Fe Trail right through the Air Force Academy campus), more climbing (try aptly named Garden of the Gods), and world-class training facilities (Carmichael Training Systems). Not sated? Just southwest of town, the Arkansas River has Class II to Class V rapids (try Cañon City’s Lost Paddle Rafting). (800) 368-4748, visitcos.com