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A couple less traditional winter sports from around the world

Dog sledding

While we’re talking about winter related destinations on the site and the various snow-related activities that one can engage in at said locations, today we’ll talk a bit about some less well known and more unusual winter-related activities from around the world.

 

Polar bear swimming – Korea

Despite its name, it has nothing to do with actual polar bears, instead it refers to rather courageous, and some might say insane, human beings who are willing to swim an 80 meter length in the freezing cold waters of the Korea Strait, while wearing summer-appropriate swimming suits. This event has been taking place since 1988 and while it’s technically a contests, everyone can agree that all those who successfully finish it are winners.

This type of activity, event, ritual, call it what you may, is known to take place usually in countries more accustomed to long periods of extremely cold weather, usually Nordic ones, so it happening in Korea is just a bit odd.

 

Ice karting – Finland

For those who love the thrill and fun of go-karting, but just want something a bit more, they should try go-karting on ice. In Kuusamo, Finland you can try this on an actual frozen lake, with the chance of winning a medal against friends or strangers.

 

Dog sledding – Alaska

While not as unusual as the previous two activities, dog sledding or mushing as it is also known as, is Alaska’s official sport. While the activity is nothing exclusive to North America, it is here that it has become more-so than just a mode of transportation, this is after all the place where the world-famous Iditarod race takes place. You can experience a short ride, or if you’re more adventurous you can undertake a backpacking trip which can last several days and involves mushing, exploring and rafting.

 

Ice sailing – Poland

During the winter, Poland’s Great Masurian Lakes freeze over and this is the time and place that the iceboats start to appear. An iceboat is basically a traditional sea-worthy boat that has been outfitted with sleds and/or wheels in order to allow it to be used on ice; they are still powered by the wind which would otherwise fill the sails if they were on water.

 

Shark ice fishing – Greenland

This one is only for the most hardcore of fishermen, those who laugh in the face of frigid temperatures and icy waters for the unique thrill of landing a 21-foot 2,200-pound monster of the deep. This challenge can be found in the picturesque little town of Uummannaq where besides the insane fishing one can also enjoy stunning views of the surrounding glaciers and mountains.

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