20 Adrenaline-Pumping Adventure Destinations In The US
Escaping the daily grind, for some people, means getting a heavy dose of adventure on a rugged steep mountainside or plunging over 40 feet below the sea surface. Others, meanwhile, search for alpine lakes and snowy peaks just for a change of scenery. Whether you’re a seasoned trekker, a skateboarder or a water sports enthusiast, we at Trekeffect have listed down over a dozen of exciting adventure destinations that will take you for a thrilling walk on America’s wild side.
Need a mind-blowing adventure, but do not know where to go? Make sure to check out the hair-raising activities offered by these adventure destinations in the United States.
1. The Grand Canyon – Arizona
The Grand Canyon, with its diverse collection of heart-pumping activities, is truly a paradise for adrenaline seekers. From whitewater rafting along the mighty rapids of Colorado River to breathtaking hikes on the North Rim, there are tons of thrills and adventures in this world-famous American icon.
2. Yellowstone – Wyoming
With pristine lakes, swirling kaleidoscopic pools and dramatic peaks, Yellowstone is, without a shadow of a doubt, a slice of heaven on earth for outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you’re a battle-scarred mountain climber, a science geek or photographer who wants to snap amazing photos, you will definitely find your bliss in this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
3. Zion National Park – Utah
Zion National Park, one of America’s most underrated adventure destinations, has a diverse brew of exciting activities to offer to its explorers, from multi-day expeditions to nature trails.
4. Grand Teton National Park – Wyoming
Are you a technical climber who wants to experience the ultimate mountaineering adventure in Wyoming? Then, pack your safety equipment as well as heavy-duty ropes, and take a spine-chilling climb to the 13,700-feet summit of Grand Teton. For those who are looking for an easier expedition in Grand Teton National Park, climb Middle Teton. Although it has a towering height of 12,804 feet, hikers can easily reach the pinnacle of Middle Teton.
5. Outer Banks – North Carolina
North Carolina’s Outer Banks, for decades, has been beckoning anglers, with its bounty of sailfish, marlin and tuna. But, if fishing isn’t your cup of tea, the area has high and strong winds that fuel an electrifying sailing or windsurfing expedition. In addition, you can take a trek along the sandy dunes and beautiful landscapes of Jockey’s Ridge State Park.
6. Glacier Bay – Alaska
The fascinating wildlife and spectacular natural scenery of Glacier Bay make this awe-inspiring spot a visual highlight in any cruise in Alaska. But make no mistake about it – Glacier Bay is more than just a scenic layover for sightseers, nature lovers and photographers. Billed as the greatest treasure of Alaska, Glacier Bay offers its visitors a chance to go on an epic kayaking escapade alongside humpback whales and orcas.
7. Anchorage – Alaska
Anchorage, with its magnificent craggy cliffs, is simply a lovely display of Mother Nature’s adventurous side. Revered as one of the most popular adventure destinations in Alaska, Anchorage lures legions of snowshoers, cross-country skiers, rock climbers and hikers who all want to quench their thirst for fun, adrenaline and adventure.
8. Tuolumne River – California
Flocks of thrill seekers from all corners of the world come to Tuolumne River to experience its intense class IV rapids.
9. U.S. Virgin Islands
From sailing and swimming to scuba diving and snorkeling, there are a lot of different ways to experience the beautiful Caribbean waters of the U.S. Virgin Islands. If, however, you have yet to find your sea legs, these islands have plenty of golfing and hiking opportunities to delight you.
10. Gauley River – West Virginia
With an upstream reservoir that produces Class IV and V rapids, it’s easy to see why people usually tag Gauley River as one of the top adventure destinations for whitewater rafting enthusiasts in America.
11. Yosemite National Park – California
Blessed with a wealth of eye-catching waterfalls, gigantic sequoia trees, meadows and mountains, Yosemite offers a world of outdoor adventures to its visitors, including biking, hiking, rock climbing and horseback riding. By the way, Yosemite National Park is just a short drive away from San Francisco.
12. The Big Island – Hawaii
The largest Hawaiian island has a plethora of jungles to trek as well as five lofty volcanoes to conquer, such as the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Not to mention, it has a fabulous coast where travelers can kayak and snorkel, making it one of the can’t-miss adventure destinations in the United States.
13. Kauai – Hawaii
Kauai is, in my book, one of the best islands in the world to experience a thrill-seeking escapade. With acres of gorgeous landscapes, plummeting waters and misty rainforests, the island has an abundance of adventurous experiences to excite and lure even the weariest traveler.
14. Maui – Hawaii
Maui, as with its sister islands and other adventure destinations in America, has a medley of activities and thrills that will get your blood pumping and take your breath away, like volcano hiking and sea kayaking. But, the fun doesn’t end there. Make your way to the northeast coast of Maui, and be utterly amazed by its jagged peaks, belching blowholes and roaring waterfalls.
15. Hueco Tanks – Texas
When it comes to bouldering, very few adventure destinations in America can rival the Texas’s Hueco Tanks. One of the best and most exciting adventure destinations in the United States, Hueco Tanks also offers a handful of other outdoor delights, like bird watching and hiking.
16. Hood River – Oregon
Aptly labeled as the world’s windsurfing capital and one of the America’s best adventure destinations, the Columbia River Gorge is indeed a hub for wind sports.
17. Adirondacks – New York
Adirondacks is a mountainous haven that has a whole lot of thrills to offer to adventure seekers. Here, you can test Whiteface’s powder, navigate through St. Regis Canoe Area’s waters, or feed your hunger for speed on the Olympic Sports Complex’s bobsled runs.
Urban adventure destinations ( a bonus for our readers)
Want to experience a spine-tingling adventure without going outdoors in the US? You might want to take a quick look at these places.
18. Coleman Oval Skatepark – New York City
Coleman Oval Skatepark, one of the America’s best urban adventure destinations, just went through a face-lift to create a much better flow for expert skaters as well as novices, complete with old-school pyramids, double bumps and wall rides.
19. Houghton Skatepark – Long Beach, California
Deemed as the ultimate skate park for BMX riders and skaters in Long Beach, Houghton Skatepark has awesome bowl and street sections that will give you a heart-pounding urban adventure.
20. Denver Skate Park – Denver
Denver Skate Park is a scenic and massive complex with bowls for every skill level and style. Not to mention, it boasts an extensive street course with hips, banks, hubbas and ledges.
Want to experience these super exciting adventure destinations? Then, start planning your next big adventure with Trekeffect now!
Looking for the perfect backpack for your adventure in America? Why not invest in a Nomantic 40L backpack? Designed for adventurers and backpackers, this backpack features everything you need for your adventure!
Book Your Trip: Logistical Tips & Tricks
Book your accommodations
Let's face it. Expedia, hotels.com (and all the other hotel booking engines) typically earn huge margins off of you. You might think you're getting a deal, but you're not getting a deal. Want the best deal when you book your hotels? Of course you do! With Trekeffect you can get FREE access to discounted hotel prices and save a bunch of money.
How does it work? Simple...
1. Sign up for Trekeffect [FREE]
2. Click the hotels tab in the navigation
3. Search for the city you are visiting
4. Book a hotel and save a ton of money
Shop for Travel Essentials
Book your flight
Find cheap flights using SkyScanner. This search engine is are our favorite, making sure you get the best deal for tickets all over the world. They are great at aggregating flights from multiple providers.
Don't forget travel insurance
Protects yourself against illness, injury, theft, and even cancellations with travel insurance. You're buying comprehensive protection in case anything goes wrong. We never recommend traveling without it. We’ve been using World Nomads, a great company, with great service and highly recommend them.
Looking for the best companies to save money with?
Check out our resource page for the absolute best companies to use when you travel! We list our favorite companies that save people the most money when they travel and we think it will help you too!
Disclosure: Some of the links above may be affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, we earn a commission if you make a purchase. We only recommend products and companies we use and the income keeps the community supported.