15 Adventure Quotes to Inspire Your Inner Risk-Taker

Adventures don't always have to be thrilling or extremely daring to be meaningful. (And they don't have to be expensive.) Here are adventure quotes to inspire you to take risks, no matter how big or small.

Seeking adventure

Turning 40 called for an epic travel adventure for Nate Rose, of Coral Springs, Florida. So he and a buddy booked an adventure trip to Puerto Rico and planned a week of trekking, swimming, and zip-lining, capped off by diving through underwater caves. The adventure was even better than he’d imagined… until he got home and discovered he’d gotten a potentially deadly lung infection from bat guano he inhaled in one of the caves. It took nearly a year of treatment to cure him.

You’d think that ending would darken some of his rosy memories. Not so. “It definitely wasn’t part of the plan but it was a part of the adventure,” he says. “Now I have two crazy stories to tell, instead of just one.” (And don’t discount the benefits of getting scared.)

The experience only made him crave more adventures. “Not only would I do it again but I’ve already booked my next trip,” he says.

Clearly, the siren’s call to adventure can be strong. Feeling the itch yourself? It might be more challenging to scratch that itch during a pandemic year. However, adventures don’t have to be underwater caving trips or a pilgrimage to a monastery to be meaningful; with the right mindset, you can find adventures in the everyday.

“Even something as simple as buying a fruit or vegetable that you’ve never heard of before and trying it can be a fun and memorable adventure,” says Kristie Hubbard, RD, a psychologist, public health expert, and instructor at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. Adventures aren’t just fun but are educational in a way other experiences aren’t, helping you learn things you might not otherwise, she says.

They also have a wide range of psychological, social, and physical benefits, including greater self-confidence, bonding with others, anddepending on the type of adventureimproved health (Rose’s story notwithstanding).

If you’re ready to be inspired to find your next adventure, big or small, check out these adventure quotes to unleash your inner risk-taker.

Fasten your seatbelt

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“Adventure without risk is Disneyland.” — Douglas Coupland, Canadian author

Disneyland is fun but without the element of fear that comes from risk-taking, it doesn’t rise to the level of adventure. Working through fear can inspire you to see things from a new perspective and make important changes, like these risks to take before age 40.


The thing about life is that no one escapes alive

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“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.” — Helen Keller, a deaf-blind American author, political activist, and lecturer

Learning to quiet the anxiety can be easier said than done. Start with these 10 simple habits to improve mental health.


Bravery is revolutionary

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“When you hear someone say you can’t do something, know that you can and start figuring out how. Ask yourself, ‘What would I do if I weren’t afraid?'” — Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook

The goal isn’t to eliminate all fear—everyone is afraid of something—but rather to keep moving towards your adventure even when it feels scary. Here’s what your fears say about your personality.


Start with a map

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“Anytime I feel lost, I pull out a map and stare. I stare until I have reminded myself that life is a giant adventure, so much to do, to see.” — Angelina Jolie, American actress

The world is full of magnificent things to see on your adventures. Not sure where to go first? You can’t go wrong with one of these 16 incredible beauty destinations from around the world to add to your bucket list.


Age is just a number

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“It’s never too late in life to have a genuine adventure.” — Robert Kurson, author of Shadow Divers

Everything is an adventure to a young child yet somehow we grow out of that feeling of wonder as adults. To inspire a childlike spirit of adventure, try these things you’re never too old to do.


No regrets

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“Don’t fear failure so much that you refuse to try new things. The saddest summary of a life contains three descriptions: could have, might have, and should have.” — Louis E. Boone, American academic author

The question isn’t whether or not you’ll reach the end of your life, but how you’ll feel about it when you do. Sometimes a normal thing becomes an adventure when you experience it solo, like these fun things to do alone.


Failures can be an adventure

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“Instead of trying to make your life perfect, give yourself the freedom to make it an adventure, and go ever upward.” — Drew Houston, American internet entrepreneur

Failing can be the end of the journey, or it can be the beginning of an amazing road you hadn’t even noticed before. Learn how to move on from a mistake.


Take calculated risks

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“If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine, it’s lethal.” – Paul Coelho, Brazilian lyricist and novelist

They don’t call it the daily grind for nothing. Even changing a small part of your routine can lead to a grand adventure. Boredom doesn’t have to be boring though; use these tricks to beat boredom and keep your brain engaged.


If your favorite foods are all on the buffet, you’ll never discover a new favorite

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“Life is an adventure, it’s not a package tour.” — Eckhart Tolle, philosopher and author

Taking a cruise is great in that you don’t have to worry about any of the details. But when someone takes care of every last thing for you, it takes the adventure out of the journey.


Art is an adventure

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“The secret to so many artists living so long is that every painting is a new adventure. So, you see, they’re always looking ahead to something new and exciting. The secret is not to look back.” — Norman Rockwell, American painter

Adventures come in many forms and you don’t have to leave your home to experience that mixture of awe and nervousness. Any time you put yourself out there creatively you’re taking a risk and inviting adventure. (You don’t have to be an artist to be happy. There are health benefits of doodling.)


Who am I, really?

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“It is only in adventure that some people succeed in knowing themselvesin finding themselves.” — Andre Gide, French author and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1947

Some of the most important adventures happen in the confines of your own soul—getting rid of old biases, embracing new thoughts, letting go of negative thoughts. One way to embrace this type of adventure is embodied in the Japanese tradition of ikigai.


The glass is half full

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An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.” — Gilbert K. Chesterton, English writer and philosopher

Your state of mind makes all the difference when it comes to discovering and embracing unexpected adventures.


Learning is an adventure

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“Learning should be a joy and full of excitement. It is life’s greatest adventure; it is an illustrated excursion into the minds of the noble and the learned.” — Taylor Caldwell, American novelist

Education is one of the most underrated adventures, Hubbard says. Learning new things can take you on all kinds of journeys, inspire new passions, help you meet lifelong friends, and even change the course of your life.


Embrace the unknown

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“Adventure is worthwhile in itself.” — Amelia Earhart, aviation pioneer

Sometimes the adventure is the means to achieving a goal but other times the adventure is the goal. Earhart was one of the most famous risk-taking adventurers in modern history and her legacy still lives on.


Start with hello

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“It’s time to say goodbye, but I think goodbyes are sad and I’d much rather say hello. Hello to a new adventure.” — Ernie Harwell, major league baseball sportscaster

Making a new friend can be scary but putting yourself out there can be the start of a beautiful adventure. Plus, going on an adventure with a friend makes it that much better.

Sources
  • Kristie Hubbard, PhD, MPH, RD, a psychologist, public health expert, and instructor at Tufts University

Charlotte Hilton Andersen
Charlotte Hilton Andersen has been covering health and fitness for many major outlets, both in print and online, for 13 years. She's the author of two books, co-host of the Self Help Obsession podcast, and does freelance editing and ghostwriting. She teaches fitness classes in her spare time. She lives in Denver with her husband, four children, and three pets.