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Horse riders heading towards camera

Horseback adventures in Wales with Freerein

Every now and then I think about jacking in the day job and heading off to live the life of an itinerant wanderer on horseback; spending my days criss-crossing the wild parts of country. It’s not the most practical dream at the moment, but luckily I was able try out being a vagabond on a smaller scale with Freerein, who have been offering both guided and self-guided rides through their patch of Wales since 1989.

Today Freerein’s network of trails…

Campbell Cottage near Coniston, Lake District

Places to stay: Campbell Cottage, Lake District

The New Zealand tourism board won’t thank me for saying this, but I reckon Peter Jackson could have saved a lot of time and effort by filming the Lord of the Rings in the Lake District. It really does have it all: cloud-scraping mountains, lush green valleys and a whole host of rivers, meres, tarns and waters. (Bassenthwaite is the only actual ‘lake’ in the Lake District. You’re welcome, pub quiz fans.)

The Lakes also happen to be one of…

Rock climbing for beginners

Rock climbing as a sport has been around since the late 1800s, but it’s become increasingly popular in the last 50 years or so since the advent of indoor climbing walls. Not only do these walls help climbers stay fit over winter, but they also provide a great training ground and social area for newbies to learn the ropes (pun intended) – making climbing more accessible than ever.

I’ve been climbing regularly for the last couple of years, and in…

lllongwalk tent

Walking from England to Finland with Lllongwalk

When a colleague announces that they’re leaving their job, you don’t generally expect the next words to be ‘to walk to Finland’. But that was exactly what happened back in December when my pal Lauren sat our team down to explain her adventure.

4 months and many trips to Mountain Warehouse later, she and her partner Leo finally set off from Exmouth at the beginning of April. One week in, I took a trip down to Purbeck to join them…

Caving at Clearwell Caves

Wild adventures in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley

When people talk about places for outdoor adventure in the UK, they tend to focus on the big hitters – The Lakes, Snowdonia, Dartmoor etc. However after spending a weekend in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley with some of the lovely #OutdoorBloggers crew, I think it’s time that more people heard about the amazing adventure potential of this beautiful region. Here are just a few of the activities you can try.

Mountain Biking at Pedalabikeaway

Close up of girl wearing blue Merino wool Buff as a neckwarmer

Buff Headwear for cool-weather trail running

Confession: for an outdoorsy person, I can be pretty lazy. I’m particularly bad in winter, when the freezing winds and incessant rain make it all too easy to find excuses not to go outside. All of which is a roundabout attempt to justify the fact that I haven’t been for a run since September.

Fortunately the lovely team at Kitshack recently gave me the opportunity to test out a Buff, which was the prod I needed to hit the trail…

Emily in Wistman's Wood, Dartmoor

Exploring the wilds of Dartmoor

If you’re in search of tiny picturesque villages, miles of rambling over open heathland and more local folklore than you can shake a stick at, then Dartmoor is the place to go.  I spent a week swimming in rivers, exploring the wild moors, and generally pretending I was in a gothic horror mystery novel.

Spoiler alert: at no point was I eaten by a giant hound.

We were staying at Budleigh Farm Cottages, just a two-minute drive or fifteen-minute stroll from…

Porthgwarra Cove

A Poldark Tour of Cornwall

As anyone who knows me could tell you, I love a bit of Poldark. Admittedly it’s a recent obsession: before last year I’d never read the books, but when the new BBC adaptation started my Sunday evenings soon became dominated by watching Ross Poldark gallop around on clifftops.

When I was little most of my family holidays were spent in Cornwall, so seeing the beautiful coastline, beaches and moorland on the screen gave me a real craving to go back….

Horseback archery

Horseback Archery

It is a truth universally acknowledged that if you want me to wake up pre-8am, the best tactic is to bribe me with ponies. If you then add another quirky sport into the mix I might even be enthusiastic about it – which explains why I was up at the ungodly hour of 5am a few weeks ago so that my lovely co-adventurer Siân and I could drive over to Hertfordshire for a day of Horseback Archery. (Yes it…

Claverton Weir/Warleigh Weir, Bath

Wild Swimming at Warleigh Weir

In celebration of Britain’s annual week of good weather (yep, that’s all we get), Emily and I decided to head up to Warleigh Weir near Bath for a refreshing wild swim. We also became a handy picnic for the local population of horseflies.

Despite living in Bath for 22 years I’d somehow never made it up to this particular spot, even though it’s pretty much a local institution for those ‘in the know’. Fortunately my internship has introduced me to…