Active holidays are on the rise as intrepid tourists look to not just maintain healthy fitness habits whilst on vacation, but learn new skills, embark on challenging adventures, and invest in personal sporting hobbies. With a fresh new array of active breaks dropping in hot for this autumn winter, Sophie Everard rounds up the best ones to satiate your wanderlust for your next trip away…
ACTIVE BREAKS FULL OF ADVENTURE
GO WILD IN MONTENEGRO
With an active package relaunched this October, the Regent Porto Montenegro nestled in the bewitching shores of the Adriatic town Tivat, boasts a well-priced “Active Package”, taking in the best of the naturally resplendent region’s fitness offerings. Combining high energy activities including guided hikes and bike rides in spectacular scenery and fitness sessions in Europe’s southernmost fjord, make the most of Montenegro’s natural magic with a 3-night break.
ALL-OUT ACTION IN PORTUGAL
The unspoilt surf town of Sagres has long been a tucked-away surfer’s paradise. With untouched beaches, staggering sunsets and a vast selection of activities, the Memmo Baleeira is a one stop-base to explore the best of Portugal’s most resplendent surf town. From guided walking tours around the surrounding Costa Vicentina Natural Park, surfing with the Memmo’s own surf school Freeride for all levels, to biking, hiking, kayaking, cycling, rock climbing, horse-riding and yoga, adventure junkies are perfectly catered for.
HIT THE ROAD IN SÃO LOURENÇO DO BARROCAL
This winter São Lourenço do Barrocal launches three new three-day cycling programmes that celebrate the best of the wild and unspoilt Alentejo region. With wine, archaeology and family programmes catering to all, experience challenging off-road tracks on a state-of-the-art Pinarello road bicycle with a killer sports massage at the end of the day included.
ACTIVE BREAKS CLOSE TO HOME
COUNTRY WALKS IN THE NEW FOREST
The countryside of the New Forest totally transforms in winter with rich colours and crisp atmospheric morning, right on Burley Manor’s doorstep. Spot wild ponies or deer with walks directly from the Manor’s doorstep, before coming back to roaring log fires and hearty healthy dinners at the Grade II listed hotel.
SURVIVAL IN SURREY
Beaverbrook hotel, in the heart of the Surrey hills has partnered with Britain’s best-known outdoor survival expert, the Bear Grylls Survival Academy, offering a choice of adrenaline-fuelled adventures including raft building, navigation challenges, rock rappelling, axe throwing, rifle shooting and a ‘Stranded Survival Scenario’ – where guests are marooned and must prioritise their actions to make it back to civilisation safely.
Children’s activities include everything from den building and treasure hunts to beekeeping. Visit the bee garden with sustainable beekeeper and founder of BeesMAX Mark Gale and learn more about the initiatives Beaverbrook are implementing to reverse the decline of the British honeybee population.
ACTIVE BREAKS AROUND THE WORLD
SUMMIT IN THE TROPICS
Set on the palm-fringed shores of south-eastern Mauritius, Lux Le Morne’s new adventure package provides the ultimate outdoor escape for guests to explore Mauritius.
Experience the best of the Indian Ocean with private snorkelling boat trips, hike to the top of Le Morne Escorted with licensed guides (these tours are the only ones in the island with the authorisation to take guest to the very summit) and guided bike trips and horseback riding.
GO-ECO IN SRI LANKA
This winter, Resplendent Ceylon launches a new “Giving Getaways” programme for those hungry to off-set their travels and enjoy an active feel-good trip. The programme offers a range of philanthropic and conservation initiatives, providing guests with the chance to engage and positively benefit the local communities. From reforesting at Tea Trails to offset guests’ carbon emissions and contribute to creating a conservation corridor for Sri Lankan leopards, volunteering at the MJF Centre which offers educational classes and creative workshops for children from local fishing communities to analysing data from wildlife and more.
NATURE IMMERSION IN THE GALAPAGOS
Head to the Galapagos in Ecuador for an Island-2-Island programme – a luxury take on island hopping. Travellers will explore Isabela’s most remote regions, including hiking to the rim of the active Sierra Negra volcano, spotting white-tipped reef sharks and Galapagos penguins in the Tintoreras islets and of course, spotting the iconic Galapágos tortoises in the highlands. Expert local naturalist guides join guests in exploring the forest on hikes including a hike to meet the indigenous Mashpi community who dwell in the forest.
ACTIVE BREAKS WITH A SPA FOCUS
LISS AND BLISS AT THE UK’S FIRST PRIVATE MEMBERS’SPA
Cottonmill, the new three-storey, state-of-the-art, private members’ spa at Sopwell House in Hertfordshire combines the serenity of a spa with the exclusivity of a club and top of the range kitted Gym. Cottonmill brings together innovative treatments and experiences by British spa brands, contemporary design, diverse relaxation spaces, modern dining and a new spa garden, plus a gym equipped with the latest Technogym ‘Artis’ machines with views of the garden (the Studio hosts an array of classes including Pilates, Yoga, HIIT and more) for a perfect weekend break a stone’s throw from London.
INTO THE BLUE IN MARBELLA
Located between the Sierra Blanca Mountains and the healing waters of the Mediterranean Sea, the Marbella Club is an Andalusian sanctuary.Indulge in its therapeutic offerings whilst reconnecting with nature at the sea-facing thalassotherapy spa. The introduced Holistic Studio is located within a botanical garden sanctuary and offers integrative holistic health practices which identify root causes and provide long-lasting benefits to target issues ranging from adrenal burnout, insomnia, weight loss and fitness.
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Hettie is the editor and co-founder of DOSE. A keen runner, she’s also partial to a blast of high-intensity and hot yoga. A country girl at heart, she divides her time between London and the lush rolling hills of North Devon. When she’s not jetting off on her next adventure, Hettie can be found in a candle-lit alcove with a laptop, a spaniel and a full bodied Malbec.