Manly Holidays for Manly Men With Something to Prove

Ice Swimming - Manly Holidays

When lumberjacks, cowboys, truckers or doormen go on holiday (presumably not together) you can bet your last straight razor that they wont be spending their days at the spa on sprawled out on a sun lounger. No way, for these sacks of testosterone its action sports, stamina challenges, struggles of man vs. nature and heavy drinking that make a holiday memorable. A real manly holiday – you certainly won’t want to see these guys’ holiday snaps.

However, for those of us to whom macho manliness doesn’t come naturally, deciding what to do during our holiday away with the boys can be difficult, its all to easy to be pulled into the predictable routine of lounging in the sun all day and hitting the bars all night. Young men, generally speaking, do love a drink, but after a few years of “boozy boys abroad” holidays, you and your mates might be looking for a change of pace. To help you decide what to do with your next boys holiday, whether it is a stag do or a simple getaway, here we look at some of the manliest and most action packed holidays to get you and your buddies out of your typical holiday destination routines during the next holiday season.

Oktoberfest – The German Beer Festival

 Oktoberfest - Manly Holiday

Image source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Oktoberfest_bierzelt.JPG

What’s more manly than one litre beer glasses, busty Bavarian barmaids and rickety fairground rides? Well quite a few things, but none of them are quite as much fun as Germany’s most loved annual attraction, Oktoberfest beer festival.

This 16 day festival runs from late September to the first weekend in October, attracting six million beer swilling folk from all around the world to Munich for a full month of music and debauchery. The festival itself has been running since 1810, making it one of the oldest festivals in Europe and overtime this long heritage has ensured that only the finest brews get to hold the official title of “Oktoberfest Beer”. These specially produced beers are often sourced from six local breweries who, banded together, are known as the Club of Munich Brewers.

As well as the beer, guest can expect to take in international musical acts, competitions, sports and some of the manliest (meatiest) food on the planet.

The United States Food Tour

Steak - Manly Holiday

Image source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/bwalsh

For those of you not familiar with the hit TV show Man Vs Food, the cameras follow Adam Richman on his tour around the USA taking on speed eating challenges in some of the country’s coolest and most iconic eateries. The show has been wildly successful and has opened the door to a new kind of foodie: the extreme food tourist.

For this holiday all you need is a reliable car, some good friends and a strong stomach as you and your travel buddies tour America’s fattest cities in an attempt to conquer food challenges set by local restaurants.

Officially known as America’s fattest city, Houston would be a great place to start your food challenge. You could head to Freebirds where a Mexican inspired menu awaits to challenge you to the Super Monster Burrito, a seven pound hunk of beef and cheese, which is actually intended to feed four people! Moving on you could head west to take on Americas 18th fattest city, Phoenix, to attempt The Gambler’s Choice at the appealingly named Dirtwater Springs restaurant. This 72oz. steak must be consumed, with two sides, in a mere hour. Sounds gut destroying, right? Well if you manage it you pocket the $60 dollar dish for free, so give it your best shot!

This is an interesting and unique take on the traditional American road-trip. A must for anyone who has always wanted to explore America by road.

Finnish Ice Swimming

Ice Swimming - Manly Holidays

Image source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ice_swimming_46.jpg

This truly is a challenge for only those who fancy a real test of their endurance, winter ice swimming. Originating from cold Northern European countries, ice swimming involves climbing into a purpose made hole in the thick ice of a frozen lake and keeping yourself afloat for as long as you can possibly stand before high-tailing it back to the warmth of a nearby sauna, only to do it all again once you have warmed up.

Despite being incredibly difficult, ice swimming is said to bring a whole host of health benefits and has been praised for centuries as an all natural remedy because of its ability to send blood away from your outer layers and send it rushing to your vital organs in an attempt to keep them warm. This improves circulation and gives your vital organs, as well as your immune system, a big boost. Another interesting side effect, and one that is particularly relevant to our list of manly holidays, is that ice swimming has been proven to provide a boost in testosterone levels.

This is a great option for a stag do or long weekend as the Finnish capital Helsinki is a great affordable night out, and a city that hasn’t yet been overrun by boozing British larger louts.

Shark Fishing in Portugal

Shark Fishing - Manly Holidays

Image source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Prionace_glauca_1.jpg

Referred to by many as the last big game fishing area in Europe, the Algarve in Portugal makes the perfect destination for a group of manly men wishing to pit their instincts and fishing skills against some of the biggest game the sea has to offer. It isn’t only sharks on offer here either, fishers can also expect to see some of the biggest billfish and tuna in the world, as well as impressive trophy fish like the white marlin.

Once you have wrestled with your big catch, manly holiday makers can take their loot back to the beach and grill it up on a seafront BBQ. Lets be honest, if there is anything more manly that catching, killing and cooking your own food, I’m not sure I want to know what it is.

The Algarve is also famed for its all inclusive holiday resorts. These venues tend to attract the young and the beautiful from all around Europe, guaranteeing excellent nightlife after you get back from your ocean adventure.

About the author: Sam Shelley is a freelance travel and technology writer currently writing in association with Sunbourne, a provider of static holiday homes and camp-sites in Wales, for those who prefer their holidays with a bit less testosterone.

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