Overlanding is a vehicle-based self-reliant adventure travel that often ventures off the beaten path and into remote wilderness. It’s an excellent way to discover different countries, cultures and environments while getting closer to nature.
Are you planning a weekend trip or taking an entire month off? Overlanding can be an enjoyable and rewarding way to travel. Get acquainted with the basics of overlanding and start planning your first adventure today!
1. The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is one of America’s most beloved attractions, drawing millions of visitors annually. But if you want to truly experience this renowned National Park without all the crowds, head north to its North Rim for an incredible overlanding adventure!
Grand Canyon National Park boasts a vast and varied landscape, featuring deserts, plateaus, mountains, and of course canyons. Beyond its iconic canyons, however, Grand Canyon also has an abundant biological ecosystem that supports numerous species of wildlife.
At its highest points, which rise above 8,000 feet, the Grand Canyon is covered with mixed conifer forests of Douglas fir, white fir, Engelmann spruce, mountain ash and blue spruce. These woodlands provide a haven for various plants and animals such as bighorn sheep, bison, elk, mule deer and mountain lions.
While visiting the Grand Canyon, be sure to explore its various viewpoints and trails that offer stunning views of this natural phenomenon. We recommend spending at least an hour at each main viewing area – particularly South Kaibab Trail and Bright Angel Trail.
It’s essential to remember the Grand Canyon is an expansive and high canyon, so be mindful of your own safety at all times. Even short hikes within the canyon can be hazardous, so use common sense and obey all signs.
If you’re unfamiliar with the area, it can be challenging to navigate. Be sure to plan your trip carefully and consider all factors like navigation, logistics and weather conditions. For best results, use a USGS topo quad or other reliable map before beginning your hike so that you have the best experience.
2. Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone National Park is one of the world’s most majestic places, boasting a geological history unlike any other. It also houses an abundant ecosystem of wildlife – from bison to pronghorn and wolves – so visitors have an up close and personal encounter with some of nature’s finest creations.
Before planning any excursion to Yellowstone National Park, it’s essential to be aware of some key points. These include the rules and regulations regarding visiting Yellowstone as well as when to arrive and depart.
Swimming in thermal features or streams that flow from them is strictly forbidden, and approaching bears and wolves without a permit is against the law. Furthermore, feeding animals or using wildlife calls such as elk bugles is against the law.
Don’t let the laws stop you from experiencing all that this remarkable national park has to offer! Yellowstone boasts plenty of hiking, biking and skiing trails for everyone to keep them active.
Explore the majestic Grand Canyon of Yellowstone and witness water’s powerful effect on the landscape. It’s a place that displays nature’s power of weathering and erosion with walls sculpted from decomposed rhyolite that are brilliantly colored in hues such as red, pink, yellow, buff, and lavender.
Old Faithful is another must-see attraction, erupting approximately every 90 minutes and rising up to 185 feet tall in steam. If you’re searching for more geothermal sights, West Thumb and Upper Geyser Basins should also be on your list.
Make the most of your time in Yellowstone by visiting during a weekday or at sunrise/sunset to avoid crowds. Not only is this an incredible way to experience the park, but you’ll get to explore less-known parts as well.
Iceland, located in the North Atlantic Ocean between Europe and North America, is known as “The Land of Fire and Ice” due to its dramatic landscapes. This island nation boasts some of Earth’s most active volcanoes as well as some of Europe’s largest glaciers.
Iceland’s landscapes are breathtaking all year round, but winter can be especially magical with the Northern lights illuminating the night sky! Now is the ideal time to visit and experience all that this small island has to offer.
Within a week, you can easily explore all the major attractions on the island; however, we recommend spending a bit longer so you can fully experience all it has to offer! It’s simple to add on extra days for activities like photography and hiking that interest you.
Before you embark on your trip to Iceland, we highly recommend downloading offline maps of the country onto your phone. This will save space in your device and enable you to navigate around Iceland while on-the-go!
It’s essential to be aware of speed limits when driving, and even going a few kilometers over can result in a ticket. Throughout Canada, police officers are on patrol who will catch you if you’re speeding!
If you plan on doing a lot of walking, waterproof boots are essential. Whether you’re climbing mountains to view waterfalls or trekking through mud, having sturdy footwear that provides excellent support will keep your feet comfortable throughout the day.
Finally, be sure to pack a small backpack with the essentials. You’ll want to bring along some changes of clothing and snacks as you explore Iceland’s rugged landscapes. Doing this will keep you hydrated and prevent having too much extra weight on your back.
4. Iceland’s Fjords
If you’re seeking something unique while overlanding, Iceland’s fjords are an excellent choice. These stunning landscapes were formed over time by glacier tongue movement – creating long, deep inlets of land.
Iceland boasts more than 100 fjords, each with their own unique beauty and story to share. To help you plan your next vacation, we’ve compiled a list of the top fjords in Iceland for you to explore.
Westfjords: Westfjords are often overlooked, yet they boast some of the most breathtaking landscapes in America. This sparsely populated region is encircled by majestic mountains, lakes, fjords and beaches that will surely take your breath away.
Hiking is an amazing way to explore this stunning area, with plenty of trails leading to waterfalls and other natural attractions. For a more challenging trek, try the historic Bjolfurdalur Trail!
Your hike will be rewarded with stunning panoramas of the surrounding landscapes and cascading waterfalls that plunge into the water below. If you’re a nature enthusiast, make sure to bring your camera along for these incredible moments!
This stunning fjord is home to an abundance of marine life. You might spot seals, whales and birds while exploring this captivating landscape.
One of the highlights of this scenic fjord is Hofsos thermal pool. For travelers who appreciate natural beauty and scenic splendor, this geothermal bathing spot should not be missed.
Enjoying nature in summer or witnessing the Northern Lights in winter will always leave you with fond memories of this captivating place. These tips and tricks can make your overlanding journey an enchanting one that you’ll want to revisit again and again!
Mongolia offers some of the most remote and exciting overlanding experiences available. Situated between Russia and China, Mongolia’s vast landscapes provide endless chances to carve your own path through an untamed wilderness.
Traveling overland in this country is like confronting a land of extremes, from vast desert lands and towering dunes to isolated mountain national parks. Without infrastructure, you’ll have no choice but to accept each day as it comes and have patience for its entirety.
It’s essential to remember that you will be surrounded by nomads throughout the countryside, who are always available should you ever need assistance. However, it may be beneficial to bring along a good phrase book just in case you run into any difficulties communicating with locals during your journey.
Finally, don’t miss out on throat singing – a unique musical instrument found only here in Southeast Asia! If you want to experience this unforgettable experience, be sure to book tickets ahead of time.
Additionally, if you’re traveling with someone who has any dietary restrictions (like vegans or gluten-free individuals), make sure they know in advance. This way, they can prepare food that suits your needs. In conclusion, this is one of the best ways to guarantee a smooth and enjoyable overlanding trip in Mongolia.