3. Svalbard Islands, Norway
This Arctic archipelago between Norway and the North Pole is stunning and alluring, yet you should be aware of the hazards should you choose to visit the area. Not only are extreme weather conditions, avalanches and challenging landscapes a legitimate concern, there is a risk (albeit a simultaneous wonder) of polar bear encounters here. In fact, the chance is great enough for the government to recommend all expeditions or tour groups traversing the area do so with a loaded rifle, trip wire and flare guns as self-defence towards the potentially dangerous animals. These cute and cuddly white fur balls look adorable, but they are the world’s largest predatorial land carnivores and can be encountered all over the archipelago at any time of year. Sadly, a British teenager was killed and 4 others injured by a polar bear attack here in 2011, and a kayaker was pulled from his tent and barely survived the year before. That being said, many other adventure tours have taken place without incident so the gamble is yours to take. Just know that this is a real threat and ensure that you and your guides are armed, knowledgeable and capable of taking necessary precautions to fend off a polar bear attack.