Bring the Family on a Group Backpacking Tour

What better way to get in touch with your inner self than through nature? Exploring the great out of doors and scenic landscapes is the perfect way to rediscover the wonders of life. A real life adventure with your family may seem impossible, but it’s all within your grasp. Imagine the thrill and challenge of backpacking into the Grand Canyon, or the fun and excitement from a kayak or canoe trip. Outdoor adventures appeal to everyone and they are great experiences for families to share.

Did you know that the average quality time spent with a spouse or child is less than 30 minutes a day? Many parents spend less than 10 minutes a day really talking with their children. It seems that even a vacation can be a harried, frantic time in which little is really accomplished and even less is remembered. Wouldn’t it be great to live an adventure instead of just watch one on television or at the movies? This is what you have the chance to do when you plan a unique backpacking or hiking tour where you are an active participant.

Reality shows are quite popular, but now you and your family can be part of a true reality odyssey. You can select the type of trip that suits your family best. Go kayaking or backpacking in Utah or Arizona; view El Capitan or Half Dome in Yosemite; or go on a Rim to Rim tour of the Grand Canyon. Backpacking and camping equipment is provided and everything is lightweight and optimized for comfort and convenience.

Family group vacation adventure tours are packed with challenges, fun and laughter for all ages. You can select a day hike or sign up for longer backpack tours that will take you out on the trails of Yosemite or the Grand Canyon. Outdoor adventures like these are exhilarating and enriching and they provide wonderful family bonding moments.

Backpack along a trail like Hermit’s Path and you will be able to see the real Grand Canyon. This is a true “roughin’it adventure” that is less crowded than some of the others. Look for the remnants of long ago cable cars. You can also explore caves, cool off at lakes and waterfalls, and thrill at the chance to see one of the sheerest drops at the Canyon.

There is also the option of choosing a tour that ends at Phantom Ranch. This family oriented trip lets you enjoy hiking and camping without hauling any gear. Cabins are available for guests and are downright luxurious by most wilderness standards. There will be plenty of time to visit around the campfire and compare stories, or you can just revel in the beautiful canopy of endless stars overhead.

For the purists there are backpacking tours that are rugged and challenging. These trails are on the Havasupai Indian Reservation near the Grand Canyon. Setting up base camp, learning outdoor skills, and swimming near Havasupai Falls are just a few of the highlights that even a first time backpacker will enjoy. Spend your next family vacation on an adventure!

New Backpacking Gear

When you are out in the wild and are going for an adventure it is always a good feeling when you know that you have the new backpacking gear that is reliable and will not fail you when need it the most. I always believed that you get what you pay for and it has served me well. There are so many choices and manufacturers for new backpacking gear out there that it can get a little distracting at times but not to worry this will give you a good sense of direction in finding the right new backpacking gear that suites you.

First is finding out what type of backpacking you will be doing in order to decide which route to go in getting you new backpacking gear. Do you go extreme like climbing up faces and repelling as well? Are you the backpacker that likes to go on long trips out into the wilderness for long periods of time? Or there are the normal ones that will go for a short excursion for a day or two? Any of these require you to be well prepared in case any thing happens that you did not count on, and most of the time that is what happens. These are a few good companies that I like to use, Eureka, Granite Gear, Jan sport, Coleman, Mountainsmith, the list goes on and on but just try to choose the best new backpacking gear for your needs depending on which type you will be doing. You will always find quality gear it’s just finding what suites your needs when looking for new backpacking gear.

Trying to remember everything to take can always be a chore too especially when you get there and realize that you forgot the tent or your boots. Keeping your new backpacking gear in a well organized space can help with this. Here is a good checklist to go through when preparing for a backpacking trip- Map, Compass, Flashlight or Headlamp, Extra Food and Clothes, sunglasses, FIRST AID KIT IS A MUST HAVE! Pocket Knife or Bowie Knife, Waterproof Matches, Fire starter, Water, Bottles, or a Camel Pack, Bug Repellent, and Sun Screen. These are only a few of the many that you will need but they are the things that will keep you alive if something terrible happens, God Forbid it does, but better safe than sorry right? Over all just keep yourself equipped with the right gear, be safe, make good decisions and it will be a trip you will not forget, and don’t forget to take pictures as well.

Backpacking in Maputo, Mozambique

Thousands of backpackers pass through Maputo, the capital city of Mozambique, each year. It is worthwhile spending at least 3 days in Maputo before travelling inland to the traditional backpacker destinations of Xai-xai and Tofo. Mozambique’s history of colonisation by the Portuguese has left a colourful and eclectic legacy in Maputo, where the fusion of Portuguese and African cultures gives backpackers the opportunity to enjoy unique cultural and culinary experiences.

Maputo has two major backpackers that accommodate travellers, Fatima’s Place and The Base. Both of them offer dorm beds, single rooms and doubles at reasonable rates. Fatima’s Place is generally busier and louder than The Base, sometimes making it difficult to get a good night’s sleep. The accommodation facilities at The Base are cleaner and more comfortable than at Fatima’s Place, and The Base’s location is more central as it is closer to the bus stop used by the major bus lines that transport passengers to and from Nelspruit and Johannesburg.

The most famous tourist attraction in Maputo is the fish market at Costa do Sol. It is relatively easy to get to the fish market by using one of the chapas, or local minibus taxis. The fish market sells freshly caught fish, and upon walking in, one is greeted with a visual spectacle of seafood. When walking through the fish market, one can see live clams in large buckets, endless heaps of prawns, large lobsters and crayfish and dozens of local fish species. Fish and other seafood are sold by weight, and customers are expected to negotiate regarding the price. Store-owners will often initially quote inflated prices which they are willing to reduce through negotiations.

In a section adjoining the fish market, there are various restaurants where patrons can sit down and eat the seafood purchased in the fish market. These restaurants expertly clean, spice, cook and serve the seafood to their patrons. Purchasing fresh seafood from the market and immediately enjoying it as a delicious meal is a memorable experience.

Mozambique is well-known as a producer of cashew nuts, and visitors to Maputo can purchase freshly roasted cashew nuts, as well as raw cashew nuts that are sold by the kilogram. Cashew nuts are also used in the production of a local alcohol, Cajoe, which should not be indulged in by the faint-hearted as it is known to be very strong.

Maputo also has a lively nightlife, and there are a number of live music venues towards the south and east of the city. There are also a number of popular nightclubs, the most famous being Coconuts and Navau, both of which are frequented by locals and travellers alike.

Catembe Island, a small island located across the stretch of water in front of the Maputo Harbour, is also a worthwhile attraction for backpackers. There is a ferry that transports passengers between the harbour and the island, and the journey takes approximately 20 minutes. Visitors can explore the island, enjoy a meal at a local eatery, and drink a local beer at one of the many bars on the island.

Maputo is a city with a unique cultural heritage. Backpackers using Maputo as their point of entry into Mozambique should spend a few days exploring the sights and enjoying all that the city has to offer.