Places Where You Can Pay For The Privilege Of Dying
Sometimes a vacation can feel like nothing more than five days of food comas and airline regret. That's why some people prefer their holidays a little more exciting -- and we're not talking about jumping off a cliff a la the Hawaii episode of Full House. Provided you survive, a trip to one of these quaint little death traps is guaranteed to turn you into a first-world warrior of the highest caliber.
Get Irradiated On A Tour Of The Fukushima Nuclear Exclusion Zone
Fukushima-Daiichi was a tiny little nuclear power plant run by the Tokyo Electric Power Company that was hit by a tiny little tsunami back in 2011, and as a result released a tiiiiiiny little bit of nuclear radiation into the Japanese countryside (reports of tiny Godzillas in the area have not been verified). Seven years on, none of the radioactive fuel rods have been removed from the reactors, as the removal date has been continually pushed back, causing experts to eye-rollingly conclude that TEPCO "hasn't a clue what it is doing."
Luckily, you can witness the bumbling firsthand! In the town of Namie, about five miles from the plant (so close that you can look down and see it looming below), tour guides will lead you around the once-bustling streets amid the ongoing decontamination efforts. Demolition's slow, what with the dangerously high levels of radiation and all, so the contaminated waste is mostly lurking around in buildings and heaping piles of trash bags stored in lots around town. Another 30 or 40 years, though, and this should all be taken care of. That's right! It might even get done in your lifetime.
Don't worry, though. The government insists that parts of Fukishima are safe to live in again, even though it's still being used as a storage site for contaminated soil. So if you're looking for a vacation home with a mortgage you might not live long enough to have to worry about paying off, hit them up.
Dive Up Close With Crocodiles
If there's one thing Steve Irwin taught us, it's that crocodiles love it when you invade their personal space. They're social creatures that enjoy hugs and wrasslin'. What you probably don't know, though, is that they sometimes eat people. As a matter of fact, it's estimated that Nile Crocs kill some 200 people each year. So let's have a beach party with 'em!
That's the irresistible service offered by BigAnimals Expeditions, run by world-renowned wildlife photographer, adventurer, and awesome-name-haver Amos Nachoum. In addition to adventures like swimming with leopard seals in the Antarctic and funnin' with anacondas in Brazil, for a mere $15,000 or so, you can scuba dive with Nile Crocodiles in Botswana, all without a safety cage or even a big stick.
Believe it or not, as of 2018, BigAnimals boasts that they've safely led over 3,000 tourists on various expeditions without incident. Nachoum claims that if approached correctly, most predatory creatures pose no threat to humans. We'd normally make a joke about TED Talks here, but he did in fact give a TED talk about it. It's also heartwarming that Mr. Nachoum doesn't hold anything against the crocs, even after one of them stole what we assume was his favorite GoPro:
Gun It In A Lamborghini Like An Experienced Race Car Driver (Minus The Experience)
If you've ever wanted recreate a Fast & Furious movie and the only thing holding you back are driver safety laws written by spineless cowards, you're in luck! For only $79 per lap, you can get your Vin Diesel on at a public track like SpeedVegas Racetrack in Hoboken, New Jersey (just kidding, it's in Vegas). Tomorrow you might be back to sippin' Cup Noodles in your Kia on your way to work, but today? Today belongs to you.
That is, until it belongs to your loved ones, who find themselves planning a hasty closed-casket funeral. On February 12, 2017, a Canadian tourist and his driving instructor both died in a fiery crash during one such thrill ride. After the accident, an employee at SpeedVegas filed a lawsuit. It was something about five crashes happening in a ten-month period and those damn slippery brake pads that apparently keep falling off of the cars while customers are driving them.
SpeedVegas was shut down temporarily pending an OSHA investigation after the deaths, but reopened less than two weeks later. To be fair, it's not like they're the only ones. There are multiple public race tracks in the U.S., where at least four other fatal incidents have occurred, so there's probably one near you. Sure, you might catch on fire to death, but on the other hand, this is the literal meaning of the phrase "blaze of glory."
Hawaii Volcano Tours
The Kilauea Volcano on Hawaii's Big Island has been continually oozing lava since 1983. It got really pissed off in 2018, probably about politics, and after a few persistent warnings, it finally decided it needed to vent. Its slopes split open, with multiple fissures expelling lava and toxic gases into nearby Leilani Estates. Kilauea also began pumping up to 26 times the amount of lava over the coastline than it had during its last eruption. These waterfalls from Satan gently touch the ocean, turning it into an instant crab boil that makes for an amazing shot for the 'Gram.
Which is why, right before the big eruption started, the Coast Guard began limiting boats giving tours of the lava flows to 300 yards from the carnage. One lava tour operator who disregarded the limit would call the measure "severe." Imagine his surprise when, a little over a year later, 23 people on a similar tour were injured after a "lava bomb" landed right on top of their tour boat (thankfully, no one died). So yeah, 300-yard limit, dude.
You're not any safer on land either. Unless you're Usain Bolt, Kilauea's lava can outrun you. Groundside, you also run the risk stumbling into clouds of hydrochloric acid, which killed two tourists back in November 2000. Those plumes of pretty white mist might want you to think that they're some of Bob Ross' "happy little clouds," but they're as evil as a Banksy prank.
Snort Your Way Across Colombia By Taking A Cocaine Tour
Ready for the latest craze that's sweeping the nation's nose hairs? It's called cocaturisma, and it's cocaine tourism for sheltered Westerners that's apparently such a magical experience that some are willing to trek to the opposite side of the Earth to take in the snorts and sounds.
For $60 or less, you can take the tour, sometimes in a normal family household. Drug traffickers will chop up coca leaves and process cocaine right in front of you, using a special family recipe that's been passed down to them from their great-great-abuelas or something. You know, a little battery acid, a bit of gasoline, a touch of cement. Things like that.
Of course, you might run into some problems. Aside from the fact that it's still illegal as hell, a large portion of Colombia's drug trafficking is controlled by various guerrilla armies, paramilitaries, and good old-fashioned urban gangs. Basically, if you go around asking for one of these tours, there's no telling who you might end up with. Could be an affable family, could be a heavily armed man forcing you to a remote part of the jungle to dig holes.
And on the off chance you die on these 'vacations', there are some great urns available on Amazon.
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