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  • Writer's pictureKim Davis

Adventure Travel, as a Conference? Is that an oxymoron?

Updated: May 15, 2023

I have always loved adventure travel. There is something exhilarating about exploring new places, meeting new people, and challenging myself physically and mentally. That's why I was so excited to attend the Adventure Travel World Summit (ATWS) in Lugano, Switzerland last year.

The ATWS is an annual event organized by the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA), the largest global network of adventure travel leaders¹. It brings together hundreds of professionals from across the industry, including tour operators, guides, travel advisors, tourism boards, media, and more¹.

The theme of this year's summit was "The Elements", focusing on the four natural elements - air, water, fire, and earth - that define our relationship with nature. The summit offered a variety of educational sessions, networking opportunities, keynote speakers, and, you guessed it, adventure activities that showcased the beauty and diversity of Lugano and its surroundings.

Some of the highlights for me were:

- Learning from experts about topics such as sustainability best practices, destination development, storytelling techniques, and wellness trends.
- Meeting adventure travel operators and suppliers from around the world who share my passion for adventure travel and exchanging ideas and insights.
- Listening to inspiring stories from keynote speakers such as Bertrand Piccard, a Swiss explorer who circumnavigated the globe in a solar-powered airplane.
- Experiencing some of the amazing adventures that Lugano has to offer such as hiking in the mountains, kayaking on Lake Lugano, paragliding over the city, and tasting local delicacies such as cheese fondue and chocolate (ok, I maybe chose some of the softer adventures but I cheered on the bungee-jumpers!).

The ATWS was an unforgettable experience that enhanced my knowledge and skills as a luxury travel advisor offering adventure travel to my clients. It also reminded me of why I love adventure travel so much: it connects me with nature, culture, people, and myself.

If you are interested in booking your own adventure travel experience anywhere in the world please contact me. I would love to help you plan whatever your adventure challenge might be.


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