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The World's Top Places For Outdoor Exercise

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Luis Alvarez via Getty Images

Tired of looking at the same gym walls while sculpting your killer abs? What about running mile after mile on a treadmill facing a group of sweaty powerlifters? Switch up your workout routine and stare upon a breathtaking mountain vista or run across a beautiful white sand beach in some of the world's best outdoor locales.

Using our Passion Search tool, we found the top ten places around the world to get fit in the most exciting way. We know how hard it can be stay motivated to work out -- but with these destinations, you'll be able to meet your fitness goals and gain a new experience at the same time.

Torres del Paine, Chile

Picture Credit:

If you're struggling to get out of bed in the morning to hit the gym, just look up The Torres del Paine National Park. The South American scenery includes three granite towers (Towers of Paine) together with cerulean blue lakes, grand glaciers and towering mountains. It may be barren but there are plenty of places to stay (world-class hotels as well as campsites) and you can explore by foot, mountain bike or even on horseback. If you're feeling really motivated, book a multi-day hiking tour for the ultimate outdoors experience.

New Plymouth, New Zealand

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Whether you're looking for something thrill-seeking or low key, New Plymouth has both. In addition to being a prized surfing destination, the city has an active but quiescent volcano -- Mount Taranaki -- offering various hiking trails. If you want a more relaxing activity, visit the scenic waterfront, where a 10 kilometer promenade stretches throughout most of the city. There's tons of choice if you're with a group, such as walking, running, cycling or skating.

Los Angeles, U.S.

Picture credit: Runyon Canyon at sunset | Photo courtesy of artem.aleksenko, Flickr

With the warm weather, beach views and focus on wellness, the City of Angels is the perfect place to join celebrity fitness trends like this one. While you could exercise by chasing after your favourite stars, L.A. is full of outdoor gyms - with most being located on the beach, so you can take a dip in the ocean post-sweating. If gyms aren't your cup of tea, take a Santa Monica's bike tour to discover L.A.'s modern art scene or hike up Runyon Canyon Park to see the famous Hollywood Sign. Instagram likes guaranteed.

Halls Gap, Australia

Picture credit: Tourism Australia

If you're the type that enjoys working out early or late in the day, the Grampians National Park in Victoria offers some of the most breathtaking sunrises and sunsets - which is why the destination has inspired artists and writers alike. Surrounded by mountains, waterfalls, and natural flora and fauna, the Grampians offer rock climbing, bush walking, cycling, abseiling, fishing and canoeing. Discover the Boroka lookout to experience the beauty of the Australian native landscape - and you may even spot a kangaroo or two!

Vancouver, Canada

Picture credit: Hello BC - Hikers in Stawasmus Chief

Ditch the dark and depressing gym in exchange for awe-inspiring peaks and secluded beaches in Vancouver. Get your heartbeat pumping as you hike the Stawamus Chief, the world's second largest freestanding granite monolith (Disclaimer: this hike is only for those who like a challenge!) For something less difficult, head to Deep Cove - just 30 minutes outside the city -- for kayaking or canoeing. You can also enjoy the fresh air at Stanley Park, where you can jog, bike, or skate along the five miles of paved seawall.

Étretat, France

Picture Credit: The Dormy House, Étretat - Golf Course

With romantic rock formations and emerald waters framing the village, take your significant other or best fitness pal to Étretat. The particular part of the Normandy coast line is a popular holiday spot, especially for those seeking cliff top, golf and beach walks. There are also a range of water sports, so you can experience the picturesque, naturally-formed archways firsthand. Make sure to check out the historic chateaus and chapels during your downtime.

Aviemore, UK

Mountain biking in Cairngorms National Park

Not many places could inspire you to get active outdoors more than the Scottish Highlands, a natural playground for any age. Aviemore offers access to views of Scotland's rugged landscape, found in the Cairngorms National Park. Known as a major holiday resort destination, Aviemore is one of the country's top ski areas. Discover the stunning Spey Valley golf course or one of the many hiking trails. If seeking a unique workout, there's archery, horseback riding, river tubing and whitewater sledging.

Gerês, Portugal

Photo Credit: Go Discover Portugal - Canyoning in Geres

Peneda-Gerês is Portugal's only national park, offering an active holiday experience you won't get anywhere else. While it's known for its waterfalls, the park boasts a rare combination of natural beauty and ancient ruins and relics. Megalithic stone tombs, buildings erected by early settlers and a well-preserved Roman road are just some of the delights dotted around the deep green valleys and oak forests. It's a popular destination for walkers, so visit one of the many bountiful trails and tours. Get a glimpse into traditional Portuguese rural life by stopping off at a few of the region's quaint villages.

Alto Paraíso de Goiás, Brazil

Parque Nacional da Chapada dos Veadeiros

A remote and mysterious destination, Alto Paraíso has been hailed as a shining example of eco-tourism. Literally translates as 'High Paradise' and though it has a reputation for attracting those seeking natural therapies and spiritualism, the area has a remarkable amount of biodiversity. The nearby Parque Nacional da Chapada dos Veadeiros is home to 10,000 plant species and rare animals. Hike through jagged canyons and past magical waterfalls to get to mesmerizing vantage points.

Monteverde, Costa Rica

Ziplining across Costa Rica's cloud forest

Looking for a challenge? Discover Costa Rica's variety of unique outdoor activities alongside its cloud forests and deep green foliage. Monteverde's Selvatura Park offers a canopy tour with a two mile walk, treetop suspension bridges and zip lining. It's hard not to enjoy some drops of sweat while immersed in the array of vegetation and wildlife (-monkeys!).

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