Beach holidays are great, but sometimes getting back to nature and being out in the wilderness can help you take stock of everything. Outdoor and activity-led getaways are also full of fun moments, whether you’re going on a hike in the mountains, wandering through national parks or kayaking down wild rivers.
It wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see a surge in activity-led getaways this year, especially with travel restrictions likely to ease but social distancing measures still in place. After spending the best part of 2020 at home, an outdoor adventure might be just what we need to reintroduce ourselves to the world.
So where do you go if you’re looking for a holiday based outside? While the UK has plenty of fun, active things to do, we’re focusing on breaks abroad where you can go on a thrill-seeking holiday, spend some time in nature or simply embrace the great outdoors.
Full of natural beauty and diversity, the Dolomites is a great place to start your outdoor adventure. Located in northeastern Italy, the Dolomite mountain peaks set the tone for a landscape full of colour and natural beauty.
There are many hikes to choose from, stretching across regions Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli Venezia Giulia. Hikes offer the chance to soak up your surroundings, whether you’re snapping pics of daunting peaks, picturesque lakes or lush rolling greens.
La Palma, Spain
The first designated Starlight Reserve in the world, La Palma offers a variety of sweeping vistas. Prepare to witness volcanic landscapes, ravines that go on forever, black-sand beaches and subtropical forests featuring a dramatic effect.
A trip to La Palma is your chance to get back to nature and escape the hustle and bustle of city life. There’s hardly any pollution here, which means you can head to the island’s highest points at night and witness the sky lit up in all its glory.
Some things need to be seen to be believed, and nowhere is that more apparent than Cappadocia in Turkey. Known for its fairy chimneys, cone-shaped rock formations and underground villages, Cappadocia looks like something taken straight out of the pages from a fairytale.
A trip to this historical region is all about witnessing natural beauty, whether you’re visiting the Goreme Open-Air Museum or the village of Kaymaklı – it’s no wonder it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Hop in a colourful air balloon and take to the skies to discover striking sights on an unforgettable trip.
Queenstown, New Zealand
Combine stunning natural beauty with outdoor adventures in New Zealand’s Queenstown, a place renowned for its thrill-seeking sports. Set to the backdrop of the Southern Alps, a holiday in Queenstown lets you marvel at local nature while getting the adrenaline pumping.
Start your trip with a bungee jump at The Ledge, a popular spot with views of Lake Wakatipu. Then try your hand at activities ranging from mild to wild: horse ride in the countryside, mountain bike off-road or try a spot of white water rafting in wild mountain rivers.
Sometimes the best holidays take place exclusively outdoors. This is especially true if you’re getting back to nature with a camping break, and D’Olde Kamp in Ansen, Netherlands offers a scenic escape from city life where you can bask in nature. The site at D’Olde Kamp has open field camping, as well as cosier options should you wish to enjoy a private experience.
Expect to make new friends with goats, chickens, donkeys and the like during your stay, in what is a great outdoor holiday for all the family. There is even on-site coffee, warm bread and an outdoor pizza oven, so you never feel like you’re completely cut off.
Costa Azul, Portugal
Discover the southern stretch of Portugal’s west coast on horseback as you take in unspoilt and remote locations. The Costa Azul, otherwise known as Blue Coast, tends to stay quiet during the summer, making it a great holiday option if you want to avoid the crowds.
Experiencing the 100-mile stretch is even more exhilarating on horseback. Portugal’s legendary Lusitano horses are the perfect companion to enjoy an outdoor holiday that includes coastlines, pine forests and quaint fishing villages.
Kruger National Park, South Africa
There’s nothing quite like a national park holiday to experience the great outdoors, and Kruger National Park has the added bonus of an unforgettable safari experience. Hop on a 4×4 and make some new friends (from afar) in the form of lions, tigers and maybe even some bears.
As well as roaring animals, there are vast landscapes to soak up, including crocodile rivers and mountains. Plus, you can stay in the park’s luxury lodges and relax in five-star settings while only ever being a few steps from local wildlife and natural terrain.
The Balkans, Croatia
Home to some of the most jaw-dropping landscapes in Europe, the Balkans are becoming an increasingly popular travel destination for those who want to get back to nature. Situated on the Adriatic shores, the Croatian section of the Balkans is a popular area where you can discover charming villages, mountainous peaks and picture-perfect lakes.
If you love butterflies, then go on a Balkan butterfly tour and see 200 colourful species native to Croatia. The tours also include visits to Plitvice and Paklenica national parks, where there are limestone gorges and the opportunity to take in plenty of natural beauty during your outdoor break.
Take a walk outside
From majestic mountains to sporting activities and idyllic lakes to camping spots, there are many outdoor holidays just waiting to be discovered once we start jetting off again. With Fly Now Pay Later, you can experience the outdoor holiday of a lifetime by planning and booking now and paying in instalments to spread the cost, ensuring you don’t miss out on your dream getaway.