How to: create the perfect adventure

Claire Copeman - Apr 26, 2019 - Inspiration

Guest post written by: Jenny Benge at Genius Travels

Planning a UK adventure holiday

Planning an adventure is hugely exciting. But it can also be daunting if you’ve never done it before. Here at Adventure Tours UK, we’re always planning new UK adventure holidays for our guests so we’re a dab hand. But we understand not everyone is that confident.

So when our friends over at Genius Travels suggested writing some tips to help new adventurers like you, we thought it was a great idea!

Here are their top tips for creating your perfect adventure…

Adventure is everywhere

Valley view on a UK adventure holiday

We love an adventure. Exploring mountains, forests, rivers, coastlines – basically ANYWHERE – makes us ridiculously happy. Of course we’re not alone in this. The ever-growing tribe of adventure lovers out there was one of the reasons we started Genius Travels, to create our own community platform for people to read about our adventures and be inspired to share their own.

In the past, outdoor activities such as hiking or cycling had a bit of a PR problem, with the main focus group seeming to be retirees dressed head to toe in an unflattering shade of khaki. However, things have changed as organisations, retailers and participants alike have recognised the enormous physical and mental health benefits that time spent in the wilderness can bring.

The growing diversity of adventure seekers is partly down to the ease with which you can now book and plan time away. With so much detail readily available on the internet and the advanced reliability of GPS route planners, it’s possible to plan an exploratory trip with multiple travel options and adventurous opportunities along the way.

Even adventurers can ask for help!

Planning the perfect UK adventure holiday

Ease of planning makes it easier for people from all walks of life to get away from the city and enjoy a weekend or adventure holiday off the beaten track. Especially for destinations within the UK, where we’re lucky to have so many beautiful National Parks to explore.

For anyone very short on time or nervous about going it alone when planning an adventure, there are also specialist tour companies, like Adventure Tours UK. They take the hassle away completely and ensure your safety during an exciting activity getaway. This means everyone, from families with young children to time-poor professionals can find an adventure that’s perfect for them. And you still get the full authentic experience, just with a helping hand from the experts.

There’s a lot to think about when you’re planning an adventure in the UK. If you’re not used to everything involved or you’ll struggle to find the time to plan down to the small details, it might be best to get some expert help.

Here are just a few of the things you’ll need to consider:

1) Where are you going?

You’ve got an idea that you’d like to conquer a mountain. You’re feeling fit; you’ve googled the stunning landscapes that we have in the UK; and you’ve already got the Instagram shot planned out in your head (Top of mountain, sun rising in the background, action-man stance – you know the one). But how do you know where to find the exact landscapes you’re dreaming of? And how do you get there?

There’s enough information online or in various guidebooks. And if you’ve got the time you can plan your perfect destination, with access to all the sites and activities you want to include in your trip. We share our Genius Travels adventures online and share lots of information in our blog posts videos if you’re looking for inspiration. Plan carefully and find a destination that’s got everything you need to make a good base for your adventure.

2) How will you navigate?

map of mtb route in snowdonia on a guided mountain bike holiday in Wales

If you’ve got a tricky destination or hiking route in mind, you’ll need to equip yourself with the necessary navigation skills. This means planning out the route in advance and having the right equipment with you to navigate along the way.

We love GPS equipment and use it a lot, during the planning of our routes and on the trail itself. However it’s important to remember you shouldn’t rely on this equipment alone. Batteries can run out, phones can get wet and stop working, and things can start going downhill very fast (hopefully not literally, unless you’ve already made it to the descent).

Take an OS map with you for the area. It could really help you out and even if you don’t need it, it won’t take up a massive amount of space in your bag. If even the idea of map-reading brings you out in cold sweats, we’d really recommend going with someone more experienced.

Yes, we all get lost from time to time, but if you have no idea how to find the route again, you’re much better off going with a skilled guide from an independent adventure company.

3) What will you do if things go wrong?

Getting lost isn't the best UK adventure holiday experience

Getting lost is a problem that is usually easily solved. However, if things got worse would you know what to do? Some inexperienced hikers make the mistake of thinking that because they’re in the UK they’ll be relatively safe. But it’s important not to underestimate the wilderness and the dangers that are involved.

Accidents are rare but they can happen. It’s important to know at least some basic first aid when out on an adventure, along with knowledge of how to act if someone becomes too injured to continue. Having an experienced guide with you can make these situations a lot less scary for everyone involved.

6) What equipment do you need?

No matter where you’re heading there’s some basic equipment that we’d recommend having. For something like a full day hike you’ll need –

  • Sturdy hiking boots. Although these look heavy and uncomfortable they will make a big difference to your endurance on the trail. While it is physically possible to hike most routes in trainers, the ankle support and thick soles of hiking boots will make the experience much safer and more comfortable
  • A comfortable backpack with water and food supplies to see you through the day. Plan to drink double the amount of water you would on a normal day if you’re going on a difficult hike
  • Comfy clothes, with layers to accommodate changing temperatures
  • Hiking sticks. These are rarely actually necessary, so you should weigh up the usefulness compared to the annoyance of carrying them
  • Map, phone, money. These essential items need to be kept safe in a zipped pocket
  • Gloves and buff/scarf. Don’t underestimate how much colder it might be as you climb up to a higher altitude

7) What activities can you try?

Beautiful coastal sunset on a UK adventure holiday

Going away for an adventure also gives you the perfect opportunity to try out another activity that you might not have the chance to do at home.

There are some awesome options including mountain biking, rock climbing and kayaking, which all offer a different way to explore the UK’s wild landscapes. In order to have the instruction and equipment you need to fully participate it’s best to go with an expert. And some adventure companies even offer multi activity adventure breaks so you can really make the most of your time.

Nothing beats an adventure, so whether you’re going on a day hike or have time to extend to a longer holiday, there’s plenty of ways to get involved.

Take a look at the Genius Travels website to get inspired by our adventures. Or if you’d like some help planning and expert advice on your trip, then get in touch with Adventure Tours UK where you’ll find yourself in safe hands.

Happy Adventuring!

Author: Jenny Benge at Genius Travels

As Jenny says, planning your own adventure can be exciting and a rewarding experience. We would encourage everyone to plan at least a microadventure so you can tick it off your bucket list.

If this post has inspired you to get out and explore some incredible wild spaces, but right now you don’t have the time to plan it yourself, check out our fully-supported UK adventure holidays. Ranging from 4 days to 8 days, and with hiking, mountain biking and multi activity breaks to choose from, there’s something for everyone.

And for something really special, we even create tailormade experiences for groups. Giving you a personal adventure that’s perfect for you and your friends or family in every possible way.