Great Britain is a country famed for its picture-perfect countryside, love of queues and unwavering etiquette – but thrill-seekers will be pleased to learn the UK has a lot to offer when it comes to action-packed activities. From white-knuckle adventure sports to weird and wonderful wildlife spotting opportunities, soon-to-be expats considering a new life in the UK will find ample incentive to make the big move. Whether you’re embarking on a year abroad or making a permanent move, we’ve got a few ideas on how to spend spare time in your vibrant adopted home.
From surfing on Northumberland’s world-famous coast to kayaking in the picturesque Lake District, the UK is positively packed with exciting watersports options – and newcomers will find no shortage of coach-run courses to build their confidence on the water. Less than five minutes’ drive from the popular coastal paradise of Bournemouth, you’ll find Jetski Safaris – a specialist training centre giving PWC enthusiasts a taste of this exhilarating watersport.
Hills and mountain ranges
Home to the Lake District’s Scafell Pike and the impossibly rugged Scottish Highlands, Britain boasts a huge number of unmissable hiking experiences for expats looking to test their mettle. Pennine Way follows England’s weather-beaten backbone from Derbyshire’s Peak District, through the gorgeous Yorkshire Dales, all the way to the Scottish Borders – offering a physically demanding walk that totals no less than 268 miles. Similarly, the 84-mile Hadrian’s Wall Path is an arduous albeit rewarding adventure – giving outdoors lovers a chance to breathe in some fresh Northumbrian air and embrace Britain’s rich heritage.
Gorgeous golden beaches can be found in abundance throughout the UK. The seaside resort of Brighton is a particularly popular UK tourist destination, home to the acclaimed Brighton Marine Palace and Pier, as well as some unmatched shopping experiences and one of Britain’s most vibrant arts and culture scenes. Brighton’s legendary beachfront is flooded with visitors and locals every summer, each looking for a chance to catch some rays and enjoy the multitude of nearby amusement arcades – and when the sun goes down, the city transforms into one of the most electric club scenes anywhere in the UK.
Although Britain is home to more than a few pigeons, seagulls and its fair share of domestic animals, a huge number of other, rarer species can be spotted throughout the UK if you know where to look – from Lincolnshire’s thriving grey seal colony to the elusive red squirrel. For an authentic taste of the plains of Africa, however, you may be surprised to find out that England can still accommodate. In the southeastern county of Kent, expats can find the magnificent Port Lympne: a 600-acre nature reserve home to the authentic safari park experience. Here, gorillas, zebra, black rhinos and giraffes roam freely – with a total of 88 beautiful and, in some cases, endangered species to see first-hand.
Belgium may have Tomorrowland and the US may have Coachella, but Britain’s festival calendar is nothing short of spectacular – whether you’re looking for comedy, music, food or all of the above. Home to Glastonbury, Latitude, Download, Reading & Leeds Fest and the colossal Edinburgh Festival Fringe, renowned as the world’s largest arts festival, the UK’s summer events lineup promises once-in-a-lifetime experiences for expats of all tastes. Rest assured you’ll find a summertime blowout that suits you.
Whether you’re moving in search of greener pastures or want peace of mind that you’ll be able to party on in your new home, the UK’s wide variety of iconic landmarks, rip-roaring activities and unmissable events will keep you more than occupied.