Travel.State.Gov > International Travel > Before You Go > Travelers with Special Considerations > Adventure Tourism
Whether for mountain biking or bungee jumping, safaris or surfing, millions of U.S. citizens travel abroad each year and engage in adventure tourism.
Whether you reside overseas or are just visiting, it is important that you know what to expect in advance and understand the risks inherent with adventure tourism in a foreign country.
Visit the U.S. Department of State’s official travel website, travel.state.gov, where you will find country information for every country of the world and contact information for the closest U.S. embassy and/or consulate. Our country information pages contain information on adventure tourism in the locations you are traveling. You will also find information about visa requirements, safety and security conditions, crime, health and medical considerations, local laws, areas to avoid, and more.
Local laws and regulations vary greatly regarding adventure tourism. Take time to research local conditions and safety requirements. Observe and obey all posted regulations and instructions.
Research the organization offering the activity. Individual entities or groups often determine their own security procedures, which may not be regulated by the local government and ask participants to sign a form to release the outfitter of any responsibility in the event of an accident. Find out what is and is not safe from a variety of sources, such as your hotel or host, local authorities, tourism officials and online travel forums. Familiarize yourself with how local weather conditions such as extreme heat, cold, high wind, heavy rain or ice might affect the safety of a given activity and check forecasts yourself before participating.
Deaths and injuries related to adventure tourism have occurred around the world. Verify that appropriate protective gear, equipment, and training are available. Many accidents have occurred due to participants’ pre-existing health conditions. You may wish to make sure that you are healthy enough to engage in planned activities by consulting with your doctor. The quality and availability of medical care can vary by location. First responders and other medical professionals may be unable to gain access to remote locations, and medical evacuation can sometimes be necessary. We encourage travelers to purchase medical evacuation insurance. If you experience a health or safety emergency while overseas, our embassies and consulates may be able to assist.
The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service for U.S. citizens traveling to, or living in, a foreign country.