Top 10 Outdoor Adventure Travel Clubs In India for Biking, Trekking, Running, Cycling, Rock Climbing & Mountaineering
When I started trekking I always struggled for partners. Most of my friends wanted to travel but their idea of travel was to go to a touristy place, get drunk and play cards and may buy some souvenirs. It was so difficult to find like-minded people who a lot of time I ended up backpacking on my own without anybody with me. Today thanks to the power of internet connecting with like minded people are such a breeze. But still, a lot of people don’t take the first step as they don’t want to take the first step or think that cost will be too high or they do not have the right equipment for adventure travel.
Today it is much easier as there are outdoor adventure clubs who help their members get out, train, dispel any fears they may have about the activities and also organize trips.
Some of the advantages of joining outdoor adventure clubs are
- You meet like-minded people and get to form bonds and communities with them
- You can start with easier activities and then take up things that you like
- Most of the clubs are not for profit so cost is kept low compared to commercial organizations
- You discover uncharted, pristine places where the commercial tour operators do not visit.
- You spend a lot less as most clubs are run for the members by members so there is no pressure to make profits
So here is the list of the top 10 outdoor adventure clubs in India covering activities like Trekking, Biking, Cycling, Running and Mountaineering. Most of these clubs are run by volunteers and maintain a high level of safety guidelines for the members. You can check their individual website and check what all offbeat travel and adventure activity they organize.
- The Chennai Trekking Club: Founded by Peter Van Giet in 2008, today the club has more than 20000 members and conducts activities like Hiking, Trekking, Biking, Cycling events. The Club takes it social responsibility seriously and regularly conducts events to help underprivileged sections of the society and for the environment like beach cleaning. The club also conducts exclusive treks for women. Membership is free and open to both Indians and expats. Join them by visiting there website: The Chennai Trekking Club
- Hyderabad Bicycling Club: A Hyderabad club exclusively devoted to promoting the bicycling in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad. It is one of the most active cycling clubs anywhere and has events almost daily. They do both local as well as outstation cycling events and are actively involved in promoting cycling in Hyderabad while ensuring the highest level of safety standards and has been championing separate lanes for cycling in various parts of Hyderabad. The club promotes cycle to work culture and also works with corporate to conduct various cycling events in Hyderabad. Join them on their meet up page.
- Delhi Cycling Club: Was founded in 2006, and has been promoting cycling in Delhi NCR. One of the highlights of the club is to organize cycling trips to the heritage sites of Delhi like the Qutub Minar etc. Membership is open to all and you can join them by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, for more information check here: Delhi Cycling Club
- Hash House Harriers: Hash Harriers must be the largest drinking club in the world with a running problem (as some of the harriers describe the club). But Hash is more than a club it is a way of life almost a religion for its members. I attended a meet once in Hyderabad and must say it was one of the most fun days I ever had. There are more than 2028 Hash groups around the world in more than 130 countries. In India, they have a presence in cities like Bombay, Madras and Chennai (it seems they have 2 Hash clubs there) Delhi, Bangalore, and Hyderabad. For a complete list of a Hash near you check there worldwide site and here specifically for India. OK if you are worried that you do not drink so should you join or not? Don’t worry you will be served cold drinks if you don’t like Beer!
- Mumbai Hikers: They have a focus on the beautiful and very challenging Sahyadri range and regularly conduct treks of all level in the Western Ghats to some of the most challenging terrains and forts. The club is very active and on searching, I found three Mumbai Hikers with .org, .com and .net domains so I was wondering are they same or different. But their about me page lists all of them. You can also get in touch with Vikram on 9987761562 for any further information. I am giving here there .com site: Mumbai Hikers
- Bisons Ride Hard: Well this one is for the big boys and girls and is an invitation only club as per their website for the Royal Enfield Bikers in and around Mumbai. The club was founded by Gurinder Singh in search of biker bros and now has a cult following and members. (Bullet riders are always a class apart!) This should sum up the Bison’s belief for you “The club is not for the weak or faint-hearted. Like Bisons we don’t stop at nothing. But we stop for someone!” Well know more about them on the Bison’s site, if you are the chosen one you may get an invite: Bisons Ride Hard
- The Bikerni: Urvashi Patole kick started The Bikerni, India’s first all women Motorcycle club. But The Bikerni is more than a motorcycle club. The Bikerni aims to spearhead women empowerment through the medium of motorcycles and encourage women to go on adventures they would have never thought to go on before. Founded in 2011 the club won the Biker Club of India award for 2013, competing against some of the best biking clubs in India. To join one of the chapters of The Bikerni check their Facebook page: The Bikerni
- Bangalore Mountaineering Club: Started its journey in 2004 when Neeraj Malve started the club to promote mountaineering. Today the club has expanded to all kind of adventure sports like trekking, backpacking, camping, Jungle safari, White Water Rafting, Rock-climbing, Rappelling, Jumaring, Parasailing, Paragliding, Bungee Jumping, Scuba Diving, and Sky-diving etc. The membership to the club is free and more information about the club can be seen here: Bangalore Mountaineering Club
- Rolling Wheels Motorcycle Touring Forum: Started its trips from Kolkata in 2005 with a dream to unite all Motorcycle lovers and Touring individuals under a single biking club so as to encourage & facilitate Motorbike Travelling amongst people. The club is a for members only club and charges a nominal fee for club maintenance. The club welcome all motorcycle enthusiasts in the club and can be reached at: Rolling Wheels
- GHAC or Great Hyderabad Adventure Club: I have a bias towards GHAC as the club is fondly called by its 15000+ members. I volunteer for GHAC, head its Nature wing and write for GHAC blog. hence I am listing it in the end. GHAC was formed by avid outdoor guy Diyanat Ali, who started the club when he could not find anybody to come with him on an outdoor adventure trip to the Himalayas. Rest as they say is history and today with 25000 + members GHAC regularly organizes trekking, scuba diving, paragliding, wildlife and bird watching, canoeing, slack lining, rock climbing, rappelling and many other adventure sports both in Hyderabad and other parts of the country. GHAC also every year organizes Hyderabad Triathlon, Mud run, Rockathon etc;, and regularly organizes social events like blood donation camps, lake cleaning drives, book distribution to underprivileged kids etc. Click here to know more about GHAC. Update: Here is my latest post about Women In Leadership in GHAC in Adventure and Travel. All GHAC adventure leaders undergo an intensive Outdoors Leadership training program ( including yours truly 🙂 ). Besides Outdoor Leadership for adventure activities, GHAC also regularly conducts First Aids training program with help of members who are qualified Doctors and Nurses.
Okay since you have read so far let me give you a bonus club- The HiVayKing a large community of people who love to drive on the great Indian Highways. Their website is a treasure trove of information, activities, and updates about what is happening on Indian Highways. They also organize and support road trips to different parts of the country.
I am sure there are many more clubs out there, and this list is just a representation of some of the very best outdoor adventure clubs in India. Please do leave in comments about any club that you think people should know about.
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