We conducted a global study to find the most adventurous countries in the world, based on search volume around adventure sport phrases including skydiving, skiing, snowboarding, scuba diving, mountain biking and more.

Using the latest Google search data, we analysed more than 100 of the most used adventure sport phrases across fourteen disciplines for every country over the past year to reveal which country is the most adventurous.


Key findings

  • Australia is the world’s most adventurous country
  • Out of the fourteen adventure sports analysed, Australia featured in the top 10 for twelve of them, clinched the first position for surfing, hiking, scuba diving, and BMXing.
  • Canada was 2nd overall, ranking 1st for snowboarding, 2nd for skiing and 3rd for hiking
  • The United States was 3rd overall, coming in 1st place for skydiving, 2nd for hiking and 3rd for surfing and kayaking.
  • Finland, New Zealand, France, United Kingdom, Ireland, Singapore and Denmark made up the remaining top 10 spots.


The top 10 most adventurous countries on the planet

When combining search data for all fourteen adventure sports, Australia boasted the highest per capita search volume, securing the top position and earning the title of the world’s most adventurous country. Canada followed in second place, with the United States rounding out the top three. Finland and Denmark were the only Scandinavian countries to make the top 10, while Singapore stood out as the sole Asian nation on the list.

Here is a map view showing which countries ranked top for each individual outdoor activity or sport.


The top 10 countries for each adventure sport

The analysis also examined each sport individually, determining for every sport which countries boasted the highest participation per capita and identifying which country topped the list. Continue reading to see how various countries fared across 14 unique outdoor activities and sports…



When looking at Kayaking, France emerged as the clear winner, followed by Canada and the United States.

Geographically, France boasts an impressive mix of mountains and rivers, which naturally boost the popularity of water sports. Both the Rhine River and the Loire River stretch for more than 1,000 kilometres, and the French Alps provide exciting terrain for river-based activities.



Hiking is one of the most affordable and accessible outdoor activities, an option that nearly every country can offer its population.

Australia was ranked top for this activity, followed by the United States and Canada. Each of these countries is blessed with vast expanses, varied terrain and beautiful national parks, which likely drive the popularity of the activity.


Mountain Biking

Mountain biking has seen growth as a sport in recent years. However, according to the data, it is exceptionally popular in Finland, boasting more than twice the per capita search interest of any other country. Australia ranked third, followed by New Zealand and the United Kingdom.



The original roots of skiing are somewhat hard to confirm, but it is suggested that the very first skis date back to 8000 years BC and were found in Northern China.
However, it was Finland that took the top spot for skiing, followed by Canada and Austria. All three countries boast world-class ski resorts, so it’s only natural for the local population to fully embrace the sport. Ireland was the only country to rank in the top 10 despite not having any outdoor ski resorts!



Despite having a population of only 5.2 million, New Zealand secured the top spot for combined search interest per capita in climbing, abseiling, and bouldering. Australia and Norway followed in second and third places, respectively.

With its impressive mountain ranges, varied terrain, cave systems and volcanoes, New Zealand offers excellent opportunities for climbers year-round. In fact, Queenstown in the South Island is often referred to as the “Adventure Capital of the World”.



When it comes to surfing, Australia is the undisputed winner, with a per capita search interest that’s 38% higher than New Zealand, which came in second place, and 204% higher than the United States, which ranked third. The island nation of Australia is home to some of the world’s best beaches (such as Bondi and Coogee) and coastal lifestyle is synonymous with surfing!



Sweden is the skateboarding epicentre of the world, closely followed by Australia, with the Czech Republic in third place. Sweden has long been recognised as a skateboarding hub, underscored by the opening of the world’s first high school built around a skate park in Malmö a few years ago. With skateboarding introduced as an Olympic sport in 2020, its global popularity is set to grow even further.



In recent years, the sport of Parkour has seen rapid growth. It’s best described as the practice of navigating obstacles in a man-made or natural environment using movements like running, vaulting, jumping, climbing, and rolling. The aim is to reach the destination as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Scandinavian countries comprised four of the top five spots, with Finland once again securing the top position overall for the sport.



Snowboarding, another popular winter sport, exhibited a different top 10 composition compared to skiing. Canada clinched the top spot for snowboarding after securing the second position in skiing. Norway and Switzerland, both nations with robust ski industries, followed in second and third places, respectively.



Skydiving, an extreme sport, was the sole discipline in which the United States secured the top position. Australia and the United Kingdom followed closely in second and third places, respectively. Remarkably, Israel, the only Middle Eastern country on the list, clinched an impressive fifth spot.



Although BMXing originated in California in the 1970s, it was Australia that ranked number one among all countries analysed – The United States ranking at 9th position. The Czech Republic and Poland followed in second and third places, respectively, indicating a clear trend in Eastern Europe.


Bungee Jumping

In November 1988, the world’s first commercial bungee (or bungy) operation opened at the Kawarau Bridge in New Zealand. Therefore, it’s only fitting that New Zealand claimed the top spot for this adventure activity. Hong Kong, home to the second-largest bungee jump at the Macau Tower, secured second place, followed by Finland.


Scuba Diving

While history indicates that diving dates back to ancient Greece and Rome, it wasn’t until 1926 in France that Yves le Prieur introduced the first S.C.U.B.A. — or Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus. Despite this European origin, Australia tops the global rankings for this water-based activity, followed closely by Singapore and New Zealand.

The Great Barrier Reef, situated on Australia’s eastern coast, is the world’s largest coral reef system. It boasts over 2,900 individual reefs and spans 900 islands across an area of approximately 344,400 square kilometres. To the west of Australia, the Ningaloo Reef’s popularity has surged due to its vibrant and diverse ecosystem.



The final outdoor activity analysed in this research was a combination of waterskiing and wakeboarding. Waterskiing was invented by two brothers, Ralph and Ben Samuelson, in the summer of 1922 in the United States. On the other hand, wakeboarding emerged much later, in the 1980s. Both sports can be experienced using a cable system or a motorboat.

The Netherlands took the top spot among countries for these sports, with Australia following in second and Singapore in third. Interestingly, the United States didn’t make the top 10, despite its foundational role in the sport’s inception.


The Methodology

Google search data (searching all languages) was used to establish the annual search volume (August 2022 to August 2023) in each country for adventure sport phrases across fourteen disciplines. 

For each of the fourteen activities analysed, Google Keyword Planner was used to identify the 10 most searched phrases for each sport. The fourteen sports included skiing, snowboarding, surfing, kayaking, hiking, mountain biking, climbing, bungee jumping, skateboarding, BMXing, scuba diving, skydiving, parkour and waterskiing.

Only search phases which were generic in nature were selected. These are ones which are not relevant to a particular location, therefore less influenced by unique local demand. For example, for skiing keywords could include “skiing”, “learn to ski” or “ski resorts”. 

The countries selected to be included in this analysis piece were selected based on the top 50 countries based on GDP estimates from worldometers.info (nominal GDP, 2022). For each of these countries, population estimates were also recorded from worldometers.info (Updated on July 16, 2023 with the latest July 2023-July 2024 estimates from the 2022 U.N. Revision). Russia and Ukraine were excluded from the analysis due to lack of search data available.

The search volume estimates were then used against the population estimates from worldometres.info to provide a per capita search volume per month (to score the rankings).

Using Google Search data we analysed more than 4,000 ski-related terms to reveal which Australian cities are snow-obsessed and other trends in Australian snowsports search behaviour.

Key takeaways

  • The most snow-obsessed cities in Australia are Melbourne, Canberra and Ballarat according to Google search data per capita.
  • More than 560,000 snowsports related searches were conducted by Melbourne in a single month
  • 59% of search terms are related to snowboarding, compared to only 41% for skiing
  • Mount Buller is the most searched ski resort in Australia


The most snow-obsessed Aussie cities according to Google

When analysing the latest search data from Google, Melbourne was crowned the snowsports capital of Australia, ranking number one for both the total searches conducted in a month (563,780), and, searches per capita (11,438).

On a per capita basis, Canberra came in second, followed by Ballarat in third and Sydney in fourth. Ballarat’s positioning was impressive given it had a total of only 9,040 searches conducted which was 97% less than Sydney, which had 333,280 searches.

Other state capitals didn’t fare too well, with Adelaide ranking 7th, Brisbane 10th, Hobart 11th, Darwin 17th and Perth 18th. 

When looking at the total searches conducted by each city, we saw the top six positions all filled with state capitals. Melbourne was dominant with 563,780 searches conducted, while Sydney totalled up 333,280, and Brisbane 77,180. 


Skiing vs snowboarding : Which is more popular in each city?

The study also looked at the popularity of different snowsports by assessing the percentage of searches related to either skiing or snowboarding. The analysis found that at a national-level, 59% of the search interest was for snowboarding, compared to only 41% for skiing.

At a city level, Melbourne was split similarly to the nation as a whole, with 60% of searches aligning to snowboarders and only 40% skiers. Toowoomba appeared to be a stronghold for skiers, with 58% of search volume relating to that disciple. On the reverse, Newcastle recorded 66% of searches for snowboard terms, leaving only 34% to be relevant to skiing.


Which ski resorts are searched for the most?

The analysis also looked at the national search trends for Australian ski resorts receiving the most combined search interest this season.

Mount Buller, in Victoria came out on top, receiving 388,679 searches within the month of July. This was 99.9% higher than Perisher which came in second place, and 109.9% higher than nearby Falls Creek. The individual search term “Mount Buller” was used 110,000 in the month, more than every Thredbo-related term combined.


The Methodology

Using Google Data (Keyword Planner) we analysed data for the full month of July 2023. A seed set of keywords was used to general a full list of 4,337 keywords covering a broad cross-section of snowsports relevant from ski resorts, brands, athletes and products. This keyword list and associates search volume was then segmented against each of the cities through targeting in the Google platform. The 20 cities’ population was sourced from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, using the estimated resident population for 2022.

For the ski and snowboard comparative statistics, keywords were organised based on volume at a national level, and then refined to only include the top 100 keywords that were ski or snowboard categorisation. For example, all ski resort terms were removed, as these were not specific to either skiing or snowboarding. Launceston and Bendigo were removed from the list due to the sample size of searches being too small when categories into either ski or snowboard.

Last updated : 8:51am (twice daily)


Perisher, New South Wales


Thredbo, New South Wales


Charlotte Pass, New South Wales



Falls Creek, Victoria



Mt Hotham, Victoria



Mt Buller, Victoria



Selwyn, New South Wales

With the majority of Southern Hemisphere ski resorts set to open in coming weeks, our team decided to analyse historical snowfall data from the last 15 years (source: Snow Forecast) to identify which resorts are the snowiest overall, and which weeks have historically been the best for powder chasers. The analysis looked at the four major destinations of Chile, Argentina, New Zealand and Australia.


Australia and New Zealand’s snowiest resorts

Treble Cone (New Zealand) was crowned Australasia’s snowiest resort, recording on average 349 cm of snowfall between 1st June and 30th September over the last 15 years. Falls Creek (Australia) was Australia’s snowiest resort with 199 cm, while Thredbo (Australia) has recorded the least snowfall with over 143 cm.


South America’s snowiest resorts

For fans of powder skiing or snowboarding, South America had some impressive results. With Nevados de Chillan claiming the number 1 spot for the entire Southern Hemisphere with an impressive 691cm over the recording period. Argentina’s Cerro Catedral was the runner up with 473 cm recorded.


The Snowiest Weeks

For skiers and snowboarders looking for insight into when is best to travel to ski resorts, our team also looked at the snowiest weeks for each of the resorts. A large variance was recorded by country and resort, so once you’ve identified destinations in Chile, Argentina, New Zealand or Australia which are of interest, you can use this to help you choose a suitable week.



Week by week snowfall

For those wanting to dig a bit deeper into the data, here is the week by week snowfall (in cm) for each of the resorts. As with all data, this is the average over the last 15 years (2007 – 2022) based on Snow Forecast’s mid-mountain snowfall history reports.



The Methodology

  • The selection process for the ski resorts was based on a minimum ski slope terrain (km). For Australia and New Zealand this was 10 km, while it was increased to 35 km for Chile and Argentina due to larger resorts. This data was based on resort stats from skiresort.info.
  • Data was collected from Snow Forecast on the 27th May 2023, and reflects the historical snowfall in each given week for data available. The data was collected based on mid-mountain altitude between 2007 and 2022 for each resort. 
  • Historical weekly snowfall data between the selected dates (1st June – 30th September) was then added up to provide the total snowfall over the three months of winter (June, July, August) and first month of spring (September).    

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