Using maps for photography
Get started with outdoors photography with this simple guide.
Summer is an excellent time of year to get out and about and enjoy what the UK has to offer. Here, OS #GetOutside Champion Zoe Homes, shares 50 outside activities for you to try this summer!
I love this time of year. It has so much potential for adventure at home and away – it’s warm(ish), dry(ish), and just feels like there is more time in the day to spend at least some of it outside.
However, it’s not always easy to come up with ideas of things to do when you spend so much time busy with work, chores and the other things. So in the interests of wanting to make it as easy as possible for you to get outside this summer, here’s a simple list of 50 outdoor ideas.
You’ll be pleased to know that the vast majority of things on this can be done in just one hour, meaning you can probably squeeze one of these things in daily, after work.
Outdoor adventure doesn’t have to mean going deep into the wilderness, or having loads of specialist equipment; some of my best outdoors memories are based not far from my own front door, and UK based fun can be equally as memorable as heading abroad. I mean, you can probably do all of these things a long way from home, but the point is that you don’t have to.
1. Build a sandcastle on the beach. Admittedly you have to go to the beach first, which could be another one right at the start of the list.
2. Explore some castle ruins and learn about the people who once lived on the site.
3. Pick your own strawberries at a local farm.
4. Visit a Cathedral or other tall building and climb the stairs to take in the view from the top.
5. Have a picnic in the park with friends – or just on your own – the perfect way to spend a summertime lunchbreak.
6. Sleep under the stars – in a tent or not, in your own back garden or somewhere else.
7. Get up early and watch the sunrise from the top of a hill.
8. Watch the sunset over the sea. There is no better place to watch the sun go down in my opinion.
9. Go for a walk barefoot along a sandy seashore.
10. Go rockpooling – see how many crabs and types of seaweed you can find.
11. Explore behind a waterfall.
12. Try a new-to-you watersport such as SUP (if you want something nice and relaxing) or fly boarding (definitely not relaxing!).
13. Cycle around a lake.
14. Swim across a lake.
15. Get out on a river or lake in a rowing boat or canoe.
16. Tick off one of the most adrenaline fuelled entries on your bucket list such as Zip World, Bungee Jumping or even skydiving.
17. Bag all the trig points within an hour’s drive of your house. This one might take several goes!
18. Climb a mountain. An actual mountain – such as Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike or Snowdon here in the UK.
19. Go bird watching at your local nature reserve.
20. Create a mini wildflower meadow in your back garden (or come and create one in mine?!).
21. Host a scavenger hunt in your local town and park for your friends and family. You could even use this to raise money for charity.
22. Grow some herbs or salad leaves in your garden or window box and use them in a homemade meal.
23. Make an insect hotel in your garden and keep a diary of the critters you see.
24. Make a bird table or feeder and record all the bird species that come to visit.
25. Climb a tree.
26. Find all the free geocaches in your local area. How many are there?
27. Go on a photo walk – a walk with the definite purpose of taking photographs. Share your photos with your friends on social media to encourage them to join you next time.
28. Find an outdoors exercise class (I’m told that British Military Fitness sessions are pretty good) instead of going to the gym.
29. Go colour hunting. How many colours can you spot in nature in one hour? Can you tick off all the colours of the rainbow? Or that song from Joseph?! (Not sorry for the ear-worm!)
30. Follow a river or stream to its source.
31. Go camping!
32. Roast marshmallows over a wood fire (you’ll need to create the fire first!).
33. Take a photo from the same place every day for a month and watch the season change and the flowers grow.
34. Take a day trip to a city you’ve never visited before and explore.
35. Do the Gruffalo Trail or Highway Rat Trail at your nearest Forestry Commission site.
36. Invite friends to visit you and take them for a walk in your local town. Show them all the secret bits only you know about!
37. Hold a sunflower growing competition with your family or work colleagues. You’ll need photographic proof that yours is the tallest!
38. Do a tree top adventure course such as Go Ape.
39. Hold a beach themed party in your garden. Complete with paddling pool (yes, for adults!).
40. Learn to hula-hoop. Or skip. Much better outdoors than in!
41. Play Frisbee. Can you actually catch it?!
42. Play mini golf. The more themed, the better.
43. Take a board game to the local park and sit and play all afternoon.
44. Go for an early morning walk and stop for a breakfast picnic.
45. Take a nap in a hammock.
46. Go for a 5pm to 9am micro adventure – go straight from work off into the countryside (by any means), sleep under the stars, and head to work from there in the morning.
47. Try a target based activity such as archery, axe throwing or clay pigeon shooting.
48. Have an ice cream party. You provide the ice cream, guests bring their own favourite toppings to share. If you invite me I’ll bring marshmallows and maple syrup!
49. Buy a new book and head to a bench with a great view to read it.
50. Find a wifi spot outside and work through your email inbox or write that article you’ve been meaning to write for ages.