25 July, 2012

Adrenaline junkie? Top three getaways for thrill seekers

25 July, 2012

Ready to take a walk on the wild side this summer? Boutique hotel experts Mr & Mrs Smith have lined up three getaways for thrill seekers, teaming adrenaline-charged activities with luxe lodgings. For a holiday that’ll set your heart racing, dive the depths of Fiji, take to the slopes of Italy or swim with whale sharks in Australia.

Royal Davui Island Resort, Fiji Islands
Casual take on tropical
Setting Bijou island in Beqa Lagoon

If your idea of the perfect holiday is flopping on a secluded stretch of sand but your partner’s primed for adventure, Fiji boutique hotel Royal Davui Island Resort may be just the ticket. Set on dazzling Beqa Lagoon, this private island escape is home to 15 suites, each kitted out with Jacuzzis, sun-decks and plunge pools. There’s a choice of three ivory-white beaches for blissful sun-worshipping, and sporty folk can team up for a game of soccer, volleyball or touch football.

The real action takes place offshore: Beqa Lagoon, south of main island Viti Levu, is blessed with some of the best diving in Fiji, and there are more than 13 sites within half an hour of the hotel. Ease into things with a snorkelling or sea-kayaking session on the vibrant reef that fringes the island, or take it to the extreme with the Big Fish Encounter. Not for the fainthearted, this daring scuba dive sees shark wranglers lay the bait while you sit back and watch the feeding frenzy. Hungry for more? Pacific Harbour on the mainland is Fiji’s extreme sports capital – ask the staff at Royal Davui to arrange a half-day zip-lining trip at Zip Fiji or white-water rafting on the Upper Navua River.

Vigilius Mountain Resort, South Tyrol, Italy
Modernist lodge
Dramatic Dolomites

Powder hounds flock to Italy’s Dolomites during the European winter, but there’s plenty to draw action fiends to these breath-snatching slopes all year round. Mixing stylish minimalist design with a warm welcoming vibe, South Tyrol hotel Vigilius Mountain Resortis perfectly placed to make the most of this sublime natural setting. Reached by a cable car, the 35-room retreat is nestled into the mountain ranges, boasting jaw-plummeting views from its cosy communal areas and contemporary cabins.

During summer, the skis and toboggans are shelved, making way for hiking, mountain biking, horse-riding and paragliding sessions. Less labour-intensive pursuits include daily yoga classes and free archery lessons. Sports-weary muscles can be soothed in the hotel’s day spa, sauna and steam room, whilst appetites are sated with modern cuisine in Restaurant 1500 or hearty Tyrolean fare at Parlour Ida, all washed down with lashings of local Riesling.

Sal Salis, Ningaloo Reef, Australia
Seaside safari, barefoot luxury
Cape Range coastal dunes

If the thought of swimming with the world’s largest fish floats your boat, then set course for Ningaloo Reef on Australia’s isolated west coast. Flanked by the Indian Ocean and the rugged Western Australian desert, this secluded spot pops up on thrill seekers’ radars from April to July, when majestic whale sharks pass through the waters. To get up close and personal with these gentle giants, book a stay at Sal Salis boutique hotel, a remote beachside camp that’s within easy reach of Exmouth and Coral Bay, both jumping off points for whale shark adventures.

While those big boys only make a fleeting appearance each season, this stretch of beach courts aquatic babes throughout the year, thanks to a psychedelic swathe of coral reef just metres from the shoreline that’s filled with rainbow-hued fish, turtles, dolphins and sleek manta rays. You may even spot humpback whales from July to September. After a day spent snorkelling, diving or sea kayaking, the comfort of a luxury canvas tent and a home-cooked meal in the dining room await.

To book any of Mr & Mrs Smith’s stylish boutique hotels, visit www.mrandmrssmith.com or call the expert Travel Team on 800 905 326. What’s more, BlackSmith membership is now free for life, so sign up today to receive life-enhancing extras and exclusive offers at more than 850 hotels and holiday houses around the world.

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