The very best adventure holidays in the UK and some helpful tips of where you may be able to go to find the very best place. Whether it's surfing, walking, sea kayaking or horse riding there are a number of adventure activities available in the UK.
The UK is blessed with a huge variety of geographical terrain, from the Highlands of Scotland and Welsh Mountains to the thousands of miles of stunning coastline with some beautiful countryside in between. All this amazing landscape provides a huge playground for the adrenaline junkies or just those looking for some active fun.
There are so many “Adventure Activities” to choose from, from a simple walk along the coast to the “Three Peaks Challenge” climbing the three highest peaks in Scotland, England and Wales - Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Mount Snowdon all in 24 hours, if you can! The miles of coastline provides loads of adventure holidays, most notably surfing but there is also kayaking and coasteering, which is becoming more and more popular.
The best surfing beaches tend to be on the North Coast of Cornwall, Devon, Wales and Northumberland as well as Ireland. The beaches around Newquay are probably the most well known, with Fistrel Beach hosting the Surfing World Championships. However there is intense rivalry between Devon and Cornwall over which county provides the best surfing and the beaches of North Devon take some beating. The North Devon coastline offers a great selection from the smaller coves at Croyde and Lynmouth to the long sandy beaches at Saunton Sands and Woolacombe. Most of the beaches will have “surf schools” so anyone can learn to surf on holiday and you’ll never forget, just like riding a bike.
The term “coasteering” covers a multitude of ways which people can literally discover the coastline. This normally involves swimming, rock-climbing, cliff jumping and scrambling, preferably with an experienced guide. The idea of scrambling over the rocks was started by surfers trying to find the best surf spots but has since developed into one of the fastest growing water sports in the country. The beauty of it is that you can push yourself as far as you feel comfortable and there are plenty of organised courses to choose from, so you can select whatever level suits your comfort zone. The area around Croyde in North Devon is a particular hot-spot for coasteering and the path leading from the village out to Baggy-Point offers a wealth of opportunities for clambering over the rocks and jumping into some great natural sea pools.
Like coasteering, kayaking offers a great way to view the coastline, only this way you don’t have to jump off cliffs! You can usually rent kayaks from most beaches around the UK coast and there are plenty of experienced guided tours that will take you to some of the more hidden coves only known to the locals. North Devon offers loads of specialist schools with qualified instructors, who will teach you how to kayak and then take you out to discover the stunning coastline from the sea. There is plenty of marine wildlife to discover, with dolphins and sometimes passing whales popping up along the coast.
This exciting sport, is what it says it is, surfing the waves in a specially designed surf kayak. Like surfing, there are loads of schools around the country and you can start by having lessons with one of the many instructors available at most beaches and then progress to whatever level you feel comfortable with. Like surfing, you can participate at most beaches around the UK coast and either hire a kayak or if you really enjoy it, buy your own.
Horse riding is obviously a popular sport for many people but you don’t have to own your own horse or own a stable to enjoy a ride in the countryside or even the beaches in Devon. Most holiday areas around the UK will have stables and horses to hire somewhere nearby. If you are an experienced horse person you can simply hire a day or half-day on a horse and go out on organised tracks on your own. The UK is blessed with an amazing coastline and glorious National Parks where there are always stables and horses to hire. In North Devon the geography is particularly blessed with fantastic coastline and beaches as well as Exmoor National Park, where you can find horses to hire and take out for the ride of a lifetime and the stables will also offer guided days out for those who do not know the region.
Like all adventure activities, “walking” can be as much or as little as you like. The UK offers the most diversified geography in a small area of anywhere in the world. From walking in the Highlands of Scotland to the Norfolk Broads or the wonderful landscape of the Lake District to the rugged coastline of Devon and Cornwall. All these areas are covered in mapped walks, making it easy for anyone, from a daytripper to long distance hiker to enjoy a glorious walk safe in the knowledge that provided they have followed any safety instructions, in terms of provisions and clothing, they should be able to find their way home.
North Devon has two major walking destinations; the South West Coast Path - https://www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk/ and Exmoor National Park - https://www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk/ both provide the best walks for all abilities anywhere in the world.
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