Go gorilla trekking in Uganda The word “trek” might sound off-putting, but gorilla trekking in Uganda is surprisingly accessible. If you wish to see mountain gorillas in the wild but are less able-bodied, you can now be carried into Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in a sedan chair, travelling deep into the forest to come face-to-face with these wild primates. TravelLocal can facilitate this incredible experience, appropriate for all abilities and ages.
Scale Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa While hiking to the top of Cape Town’s magnificent Table Mountain is an option, it’s certainly a tiring one. Instead, take the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, which will whisk you to the top in just five minutes. Once you reach the dizzying heights of Cape Town’s most famous mountain, enjoy fantastic views of the city, join a free guided walk and enjoy spotting a range of wildlife, from lizards to dassies.
Explore the Alps in Switzerland Take Switzerland’s most scenic train journey, winding through picturesque peaks, green meadows and postcard-pretty villages on foot, or by train on the Bernina Express. Ramblers Walking Holidays offers a nine-day trip that visits five small villages, with the option to hop on and off the train as you choose along the way. This means you can get the best of both worlds, enjoying the stunning views from a carriage when you’re too tired to walk.
Visit Mont Blanc, France If you want the benefits of mountain walking without the physical strain, consider a trip to Mont Blanc with Adagio. You’ll enjoy a glacial backdrop of awesome peaks, including Mont Blanc, while using Chamonix Valley’s vast network of cable cars, tramways and trains making sure the beautiful views are accessible for all kinds of traveller. Included in the trip is a flexible lift pass, so you can opt in and out of walks and other activities as you please.
Visit Machu Picchu in Peru You don’t need to hike for several days to journey to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Machu Picchu. The easiest way to get there is aboard luxury train Belmond Hiram Bingham, which whisks passengers from Cusco to Machu Picchu in serious style. All the while, you’ll get phenomenal views, a gourmet lunch and traditional live music before arriving at the ancient ruins.
Explore the Amazon by boat Journey down the Amazon River in style on a beautiful boat with KE Adventure Travel. What you do once you’re on board is up to you: choose to join daily excursions to see exotic wildlife, visit a manatee rescue centre or see the Amazon by night on an after-dark excursion. When it all gets too hot and humid – the rainforest is prone to high humidity – you can enjoy onboard presentations by experts. All excursions are included, and any walking involved is light enough for most.
Visit the Great Wall of China Thanks to the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games, lifts and wheelchair ramps were installed on the most popular part of the Great Wall of China, making the longest wall in the world more accessible than ever. Try to visit mid-week, when it’s least crowded, so you can marvel at the 2,000-year-old wall, one of the oldest existing man-made structure
Explore Antarctica For a truly once-in-a-lifetime adventure that anyone can do, book a ticket on the luxurious Scenic Eclipse for a 16-day cruise from Buenos Aires to the vast Antarctic Peninsula. With zodiac boats, kayaks, a helicopter and a submarine on board, there are plenty of opportunities for epic adventures, from exploring beautiful waterways to meeting colonies of penguins. Even if you don’t disembark, it’s still worth the trip with this untouched wilderness for a view.
Take the Trans-Mongolian Express Travel to remote and largely inaccessible regions in total comfort with Golden Eagle Luxury Trains, which offers a trip on the Trans-Mongolian Express, journeying across Russia combined with a visit to the Mongolian national festival. While you go, you’ll effectively be in a hotel on wheels, with fine-dining menus, fully guided sightseeing, on-board activities and carefully planned excursions. Guests are transported from the train to each site, making access suitable for all.
See the northern lights in Alaska, USA Seeing the magical aurora borealis for yourself is an all-ages-appropriate adventure. Gondwana Ecotours carefully plans trips in Alaska for all kinds of traveller, using an ‘aurora wake-up service’ to make sure you get the most out of the skies. Hiking, snowshoeing and dog-sledding are options for more active travellers, and for those who would rather keep it simple, all you need to do to see the northern lights simply step outside once you hear the aurora alarm. Guests with Gondwana see the lights at least once on every trip.
Visit the Grand Canyon, USA Despite the fact that the terrain at Grand Canyon is often rugged, rocky or narrow, there are plenty of ways to see the spectacular geological landmark for yourself. Get hold of a Scenic Drive Accessibility Permit at the entrance gate, which allows visitors with mobility issues access to some areas closed to public traffic. All hotels also have wheelchair-accessible rooms, and shuttle buses have wheelchair ramps.
See the Great Barrier Reef You don’t need to be an able swimmer to make the most of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. Of course, you can snorkel if you wish, but it’s also possible to view the reef from a semi-submersible reef viewer, glass-bottom boat or underwater observatory. You could also try a “Helmet Dive” for a scuba-style experience without getting your hair wet.
See the big five in South Africa Accessible safari company Epic Enabled’s tagline is “Don’t let disability keep you from travelling”, and their aim is to provide barrier-free safaris for everyone. Take a trip to Kruger National Park to be in with a good chance of spotting some big game, have close animal encounters and see incredible sunsets, with trips planned carefully around your particular needs and adapted accommodation organised for you.
See the Sistine Chapel, Rome With ramps, elevators, lifts and step-free access, everyone can see the glory of the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City for themselves. For a unique experience without the crowds, consider booking a private tour of the site, which will allow you to view the masterpiece after the usual hours of access.
Visit Mount Rushmore, USA To see one of the world’s most recognisable sculptures for yourself, head to South Dakota’s Black Hills and the Mount Rushmore National Memorial. Take the wheelchair-accessible Presidential Trail, just over half a mile long, to get in front of the sculpture and spot some local wildlife along the way.