10 fantastic summer experience gifts

by Ed Scott

With lockdown restrictions relaxed and the warmer weather here to stay, many of us will be excited to spend some much-needed quality time with loved ones. If you’re looking to treat a friend, colleague, or family member to something special this summer, why not give them the gift of an experience outdoors? 

From an exhilarating kitesurfing session to a day out in the mountains or a peaceful morning on the river, there’s an adventure out there for everyone. In this article, we’ve listed 10 ideal experiences for a fantastic summer gift. To help you find the activity that’s right for you, we’ve listed our experiences in order, from the calm and relaxing right the way through to the adrenaline-fuelled.

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book kayaking cornwall
Source: Cornish Rock Tors

1. Fishing

Fishing is the ideal relaxing experience for an outdoors enthusiast. Whether you’re passing a few hours by a tranquil lake or heading out onto the open ocean, fishing offers you the chance to spend some quality time together in pristine natural surroundings. The thrill and satisfaction of bagging your own fish is well worth the patience - with a bit of time and practice, you can look forward to catching your own dinner! 

book fishing trip
Source: Llyn Brenig Visitor Centre

2. Walking tour 

Did you know that there are almost 70 cities in the United Kingdom? That’s a lot! And each has a fascinating heritage just waiting to be discovered. The ideal gift for the culture vulture in your life, a walking tour is the best way to learn more about a city through the eyes of a local expert. From hidden food spots to unsolved mysteries and dazzling street art, there’s a walking tour out there for just about any interest. 

book walking tour
Source: Perth City Tours

3. Stand-up paddleboarding

Stand-up paddleboarding, otherwise known as SUP, is a relaxing way of exploring tranquil waters quite literally on your own two feet. There are many great places to stand-up paddleboard in the UK, from winding rivers to pristine lakes and peaceful coastal bays. Wherever you choose to explore, SUP great for mind and body, and is at its best when shared. Wander through secluded waterways together, discover hidden gems inaccessible on foot, and see the landscape in a whole new light.

book stand-up paddleboarding
Source: Dittons Paddleboarding

4. Mountaineering

Here in the UK, we’re blessed with a number of gorgeous mountain ranges to visit, from the remote peaks of the Scottish Highlands to the rolling fells of the Lake District. Wherever you choose to visit, nothing compares to the sense of achievement you get from planting two feet firmly on a summit and taking in the views as your reward. In the hands of an experienced guide, even the tallest British peaks are well within reach in the summertime.

book mountaineering
Source: Lake District Mountaineering

5. Aqua park

Looking for a group activity that you’ll never forget? Head to an aqua park and get ready for a fun-filled day out! Whether you’re 6 years old or 66, there’s nothing like the thrill of splashing, diving, and bouncing your way through a series of wacky inflatable obstacles. Just be prepared for a soaking when you wipe out! 

book aqua park
Source: Inish Adventures

6. Kayaking and canoeing

Nothing beats a few hours out on the water getting close to nature and enjoying the fresh air. Whether it’s plunging down rapids and waterfalls or drifting along a peaceful suburban canal, you’re sure to find the perfect kayaking or canoeing adventure for your loved one.

Do you know the difference between a kayak and a canoe? It’s the position of the paddler! In a kayak, you’ll be sitting down and usually using a double-bladed paddle. In a canoe, however, you can be seated or kneeling, and generally using a single-bladed paddle. 

book canoe kayak
Source: Whoosh Explore

7. Skiing and snowboarding

Think snowsports are just for the winter? Think again. All around the UK, dry ski slopes let you experience the thrill of the mountains year-round. Practical and much less expensive than a trip to the Alps, dry ski slopes let complete beginners gain confidence, whilst experienced athletes can hone their skills closer to home. Whether skiing or snowboarding, the downhill daredevil in your life is sure to enjoy the gift of an afternoon on the slopes.

book dry ski slope
Source: Alpine Snowsports, Southampton

8. Mountain Biking

Attention thrill-seekers! If you know someone who loves to tear it up, a day out at one of the UK’s many dedicated mountain bike centres is just the ticket. But wait - mountain biking isn’t just for daredevils! For those seeking to get off the beaten path and explore the outdoors on two wheels, mountain biking is ideal. The UK is criss-crossed with fantastic bike trails and bridleways, just waiting to be explored.

book mountain biking
Source: Hadleigh Park Cycles

9. Coasteering

Coasteering is growing more and more popular around the world, and Britain’s craggy coastline makes it the perfect playground for the sport. Equal parts hiking, rock climbing, wild swimming, and cliff jumping, coasteering combines all these activities into one adventurous whole. Leaping from coastal cliffs into the open ocean and exploring isolated bays, it’s an exhilarating way to spend a morning - the perfect gift for adventurous souls.

book coasteering
Source: Cornish Rock Tors 

10. Surfing and kitesurfing

Kitesurfing and surfing are both high-adrenaline sports, ideal gift experiences for the thrill-seeker in your life! Kitesurfing involves harnessing the power of the wind to glide along the water at amazing speeds, whilst surfing relies upon catching and riding the perfect wave. In the hands of a great instructor, you’ll be amazed how quickly you can pick up these exhilarating sports whilst enjoying a sun-soaked day at the beach. 

book surfing kitesurfing
Source: Momentum Surf School 

From Cornwall to Kent, from Essex to Edinburgh, the UK has so much to offer when it comes to the great outdoors. We hope this article has provided you with some inspiration to help kickstart your hunt for that perfect gift this summer.

Not found what you’re looking for? Take a look at the eola marketplace for more gift ideas, and be sure to follow eola on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all our latest updates.

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