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Top 10 unusual trips to book in January

Whether you're searching for off-the-beaten track holiday experiences you can't find anywhere else, or a thrill-seeking trip which borders on the extreme travel scale, you'll find something for every type of budding adventurer.


1. Discover Chernobyl

Feel your hairs stand on end as you step into the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, eerily quiet since it was evacuated in 1986. Now you can enter the zone for two days, eat in the canteen of the fated power plant and even meet self-settlers who have re-entered the zone to live under the radar.
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2. Cycling in Georgia

Feel the warmth of Georgian hospitality at hosted lunches and delicious home-cooked meals in guesthouses – all washed down with plenty of local wine as is Georgian tradition. What better way to earn your seat at the table than by exploring Georgia by bike, visiting ancient Silk Road cave towns and villages and the beautiful scenery of the Caucasus.
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3. On foot in Sri Lanka

Explore Sri Lanka's Knuckles Mountain Range (which resembles a clenched fist, hence the name), with its isolated cloud forests providing a haven for a rich diversity of flora and fauna. Making an early start before breakfast, we set off on a short trek to a spectacular viewpoint known locally as Mini World's End , where the sharp slope drops almost vertically for 1192 metres, affording magnificent panoramic views over the often mist-shrouded landscapes.
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4. Machu Picchu and Galapagos

For a different take on the extraordinary Galapagos Islands, choose a hotel-based trip and stay on the islands of Isabela and Santa Cruz. There’s no need for sea legs as you walk the impressive Sierra Negra Volcano for amazing views over Isabella and over to Santiago Island.  Come face-to-face with giant tortoise, land iguana and penguin, and look for blue-footed boobies, cormorants and albatross.
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5. Adventures in Patagonia

Argentina is the place to see glaciers close up. There’s even a National Park here called ‘Los Glaciares’, home to the immense Perito Moreno. Trek on the ice, or take a boat ride right up to the glacier face. End an awe-inspiring day in the Argentinian way - with a glass of delicious local Malbec.
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6. Blue Nile and Lalibela

Discover 11 impressive churches carved into the rock in Ethiopia’s Lalibela, one of the world’s greatest religious historical sites. Spot gelada monkeys in the Simien Mountains and trek on foot and by mule to reach Ashatam Maryam Church for fantastic views back over Lalibelas.  Known as the ‘New Jerusalem’, the town is thought to have been built over 800 years ago by King Lalibela.
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7. The Lost Continent of Madagascar

Take a night-time walk in Andasibe Reserve by torch-light to spot chameleon and the smallest primate in the world – the mouse lemur. By day, meet some of the area’s nine lemur species, explore Madagascar’s spectacular Grand Canyon, and swim or snorkel in the Indian Ocean.
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8. Family Turkey Coastal Active Adventure

Go sea kayaking over the famous sunken city of Kekova on our Family Turkey Coastal Active Adventure. Set off early, armed with coffee and a packed breakfast, and get paddling in the tranquil waters before other boats take to the water. The streets and buildings of Kekova have been partially submerged due to various earthquakes, but are still visible in the crystal clear water – you can even see steps leading down into the depths of the bay.
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9. Historic Baltic Republics

Discover the 98 km curved Curonian Spit, best known for large sand dunes scarcely found in Europe, trees strangely shaped by the wind and eerie wooden sculptures at the ‘Hill of Witches’. Visit the fishing village of Nida, where the community moves with the shifting sand dunes, and look for wild boar and moose in the surrounding forest.
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10. Kilimanjaro - Lemosho Trek

Trek around the rim of Kilimanjaro’s mighty crater (the hard work of the ascent behind you) as dawn arrives. It is as you walk on the ‘roof of Africa’ that the achievement of this epic trek sets in. Taking the lesser-travelled Lemosho Route, you’ll climb and descend via different paths, taking in the varied wildlife and scenery on the way.
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