While other people prefer relaxing on a white sand beach, adrenaline-seekers prefer to surf the largest waves. There's nothing like feeling the powerful majesty of a rushing wave as one is traveling through its watery cavern. However, some adventure tourists love taking it a step further and find other extreme sports to try. Besides surfing waves, these daredevils love the idea of surfing through sandy dunes and active volcanoes! Sand-surfing is exactly what it sounds like: people slide down dunes and sandhills using a boogie board.
At the same time, volcano surfing also involves using a board to slide down an active volcano, whether standing up or sitting still. Naturally, though, more safety equipment is involved when shredding the volcanic hills. Adrenaline-seekers, on your mark, get set, and check out these countries that are perfect for volcano and sand-surfing!
- Where : Cerro Negro, León
Nicaragua's Cerro Negro is the most popular place to volcano surf. Not only was it invented at this active volcano, but it is also one of the fewest places on earth that offer this exciting excursion! Located near León in western Nicaragua, the volcano is located on the Cordillera de Los Maribios mountain range. Not only is the Cerro Negro the most active volcano in all of Central America, but it's also the youngest! Despite its activity, the park it's surrounded in is gorgeous. With strong winds and refined grains of volcanic rock, it makes this a perfect destination for volcano surfing! Several tours in Nicaragua offer a day excursion to Cerro Negro to shred the slopes.
- Where : Mount Yasur, Tanna Island
On Vanuatu's Tanna Island, Mont Yasur is another destination known for volcano surfing or ash boarding. Despite its activity, this mighty volcano is one of Tanna Island's biggest attractions. Being only 100,000 years old, tourists can get a taste for ash boarding and shred its volcanic slopes. Otherwise, tourists can enjoy mountain biking and camping!
7 South Africa
- Where : Atlantis Dunes, Cape Town
Only 45 minutes away from South Africa's Cape Town, the Atlantis Dunes are 160 feet of sandy fun! Tourists from all over the globe gather at the Atlantis Dunes to try adrenaline-packed excursions, from off-roading to quad biking. Another popular activity is sandboarding. This high-energy activity can be attempted by curious travelers, young or old!
- Where: Huacahina Desert, Huacachina Town
The dunes at Huacachina are considered the largest dunes in South America, and tourists who attempt sandboarding at these massive dunes can enjoy a view of the nearby oasis town of Huacachina. Besides sandboarding, tourists enjoy the bumpy (yet exhilarating) ride at the dunes! The Huacachina dunes are also a popular site to watch the sunset, falling against the backdrop of the sandy landscape.
- Where : Mars Valley, San Pedro de Atacama
Thanks to San Pedro de Atacama, travelers have an opportunity to experience what the surface of planet Mars may look like. Also known as Valle de la Muerte, travelers will be drawn by its peculiar craggy landscape and tall mountain ranges. Sandboarding is on the table at the Mars Valley, where brave adrenaline seekers can challenge themselves and ride the 'Dragon Dune, a monster of a dune reaching 350 meters high!
- Where : Worimi Conservation Lands, Port Stephens
Considered a "must-do" activity for solo travelers and families alike, the Worimi Conservation Lands at Port Stephens offers perfect slopes for sandboarding. With over 2,500 hectares of sand, some of the sand dunes are massively tall, reaching over 30 meters! Afterward, visitors can enjoy a nice day at the beach (or perhaps try their hand at fishing)!
3 Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
- Where: Liwa Oasis, Abu Dhabi
There's no shortage of sandboarding in the UAE! Specifically, in Abu Dhabi, tourists can sandboard on the plains of Liwa Oasis. This oasis is close to the Rub'al Khali (or Empty Quarter), which is recognized as one of the largest uninterrupted landmasses in the world. Considered a sand boarder's paradise, the dunes at Liwa Plains are perfect for beginners and experts alike!
2 Dubai, United Arab Emirates
- Where: ' Big Red' Dunes, Dubai
The iconic sand dunes close to Dubai and Al Badayer are remarkably red. The dunes are equipped with a perfect landscape for thrilling activities like dirt biking, quad biking, and buggy driving. The area is also a popular spot for overnight camping in a Boudin Camp, perfect for couples, group travelers, and families. Due to its popularity, sandboarding at the Big Red is easier than volcano surfing in other regions of the world. Tour groups offer easy pickup and drop-off around Dubai's popular locations and tourist hotspots.
- Where: Qattaniya Desert, Just Outside Cairo
About 80 km from downtown Cairo lies the El Qattaniya sand dunes, with "mid-high" sand dunes perfect for the novice sand boarder. Surf the sands and soak in the sights of vast Egypt's west desert landscape, which stretches just outside Cairo. In addition to enjoying views of the pyramids (like Egypt's Red Pyramid), Take a guided tour and enjoy the day of shredding slopes…in warm temperatures!