For overseas home owner

British Isles Outdoor Pursuits

The UK is a wonderful place to come and enjoy the outdoors life, especially in spring and summer. Walking holidays are popular and there are plenty of national parks, nature reserves, forest and countryside trails to follow. Exmoor on the border with Somersetand Devonwith its barren heath land, wooded valleys known as coombs and high moorland plateau is a wonderful place for walkers. The Lake District in Cumbria has a beautiful varied landscape with terrain suitable for short walks or keen all weather hikers. The Lake District has England’s largest lakes and highest mountains known as fells, the valleys inbetween are known as dales. If you are not feeling energetic you can always take a boat cruise on one of the lakes such as Windermere. Another favourite walking destination in England is the Yorkshire Dales - an area of rugged moorlands, limestone crags, rivers, streams and dry stone walls. There are also the Downs of southern England culminating at Beachy Head in Kent. Meanwhile the Cotswolds with their honey coloured stone village cottages and verdant landscape span 6 counties and are an Area of Outstanding Beauty. Tourist shops and tearooms abound and it is great place for a walking holiday. Alternatively head for Offa’s Dyke Path in the Welsh Borderlands where you can follow a scenic national trail. If you prefer to get away from it all then head forthe Scottish Highlands - an area of mountains, heather, sheep and castles. Further afield and accessible by ferries are the Western Isles such as Skye, Mull, Lewis and Harris offer walkers the chance to escape the crowds and enjoy some beautiful scenery. Experienced climbers will enjoy the peaks of Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons in Wales.
For shorter walks there are many fine parks and gardens to explore across the UK. Hyde Park and the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in Londonare lovely places to take a picnic and have a stroll. Further south the Lost Gardens of Heligan or the Eden Project both in Cornwall are well worth a visit. Alternatively hire a bike and tour the country lanes – Norfolk being flat is a great area to explore this way. You could also hire a canal boat for a day and explore one of Britain’s waterways. Another option is to take a rowing boat out on a park lake or river or if in Oxford or Cambridge have a go at punting!
There are plenty of leisure centres and clubs in the UK offering opportunities to participate in many sporting activities such as tennis. Golf is popular and there are excellent courses at St Andrews near Dundee in Scotland, Royal Port Rush in North Antrim, Northern Ireland, Royal St David’s at Harlech, North Wales or Wallasey on the Wirral. Horse riding is also popular with plenty of riding schools to choose from. If you prefer to watch sport then you may get chance to see a football, rugby, cricket or bowls match during your visit. You could also have a flutter at the races Epsom or Goodwood for flat racing and Cheltenham or Aintree to see National Hunt racing. Good luck! 
Chris Archer Mason, Basic Author