Summer is definitely the season for exploring more of the great outdoors, and when the days get longer – it’s always good to know the best ways to make use of the extra hours of sunshine. When the weather improves and our days become filled with more adventure, the longest day of the year can be a great excuse to leave the office behind and try something new.
Whether you’re new to the great outdoors, or you want to find more great ways to make the most of the places around you – we’ve got some of the best ways to spend the longest day of the year. The longest day of the year falls in mid to late june and offers a great chance for adventure. You might not be the most experienced when it comes to wild camping, hiking in the hills or exploring the historic areas in your hometown, but our biggest top tip for making the most of the longest day of the year is to give the great outdoors a go!
We know that the UK has some of the best landscapes and locations to explore in the great outdoors, and with more places to try out a new activity this summer, then why not think ahead to plan a weekend getaway with camping, walking and adventure to celebrate the longest day of the year – it might give you the perfect break away from the lockdown situation we’ve faced so far this year. If you’re planning to get out on the longest day of the year, make sure you know where you’re going with OS Landranger maps from Ordnance Survey (AD).
The majority of us have probably been hiding away for the winter months, and with the change in weather around the time of the longest day of the year, you’re more likely to enjoy a sunny escape than face the bleak days of rain we tend to see later in the year.
Get Out & Explore More
With many great places within driving distance of the bigger cities, adventure can be just beyond your doorstep. We know it can be hard to find the time to plan and get out when you have a busy working life, but that shouldn’t be a barrier to getting out more. If you go a stone’s throw outside Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh you’ll be in the foot of the Pentland Hills National Regional Park – which is perfect for an escape that isn’t too difficult for beginners. Likewise, a quick drive from Glasgow’s bustling city centre, you’ll be able to explore the shores of Loch Lomond. With plenty of exciting walks through the stunning landscape, there’s no excuse not to head for the hills and explore some of the stunning nature that are perfect for people of any walking ability. If the weather is good, pack a picnic with you and enjoy the great outdoors. Get off the beaten track, find those hidden gems and stay out for a stunning hilltop sunset. (AD)
Try Something New
Summer days might be the perfect opportunity to try something new. Whether you’re wanting brand new experiences, or you’re just looking to tackle a fitness or fundraising goal, Scotland has some excellent chances to get the adrenaline flowing and the heart pumping. From hilltop views, to arts across the city. There’s something for everyone, and the few extra hours of sunlight on the longest day of the year are a great reason to get the creative juices flowing, taking some inspiration from the world around you.
Make sure you’ve got your camera with you to capture whatever memories you create on the longest day of the year, and who knows – maybe you’ll spark a new interest in the extra hours you’ll have to explore and create! Head for a new place and see what you can take for future projects.
Paddle A Canoe
Wild swimming can be great exercise and a fully immersive way to enjoy our natural landscapes, but we advise caution for those looking to give this a try. You’ll need to make sure you’ve got the right gear with you before diving in, and are a strong enough swimmer, even in cold water! let’s be honest, Scotland isn’t exactly the warmest – even on the longest day of the year.
For those who don’t want to get in the water, why not consider getting a canoe to paddle in, and explore the small loch islands and hidden bays that we have on offer across the country. There’s so many great places for watersports in the UK – and if you’re looking to stay close to home in Scotland – then why not give Foxlake in East Lothian a try?
Camp in a Room With A View
Wild camping is another great way to feel closer to nature and you’re guaranteed a room with an excellent view no matter where you are in Scotland. We know for some that camping with the family is best done on a specific camp site, but if you’re one for feeling the need to explore and chose your own perfect spot to pitch up, then why not give wild camping a try!
With better weather, you’ll be spoiled for choice with so many different locations for an overnight stop. There’s nothing better than waking up and unzipping the front door of your tent to a beautiful mountain top sunrise, or breakfast by the coast. Don’t forget to keep to the rules of the country code, and leave no trace such as litter behind. Wild camping can be combined with any other adventure, such as hiking, climbing or mountain biking, so pack up and head out there!
Explore More on Two Wheels
Scotland also has some great cycling routes to explore on two wheels. From the Speyside Way, Rob Roy Loop, Deeside Way, Caledonia Way, Lochwhinnoch Loop or Helix Park in Falkirk, there’s so many great opportunities to get out for a cycle with your loved ones. The National Cycle Network has some great options for cycling adventures and can offer advice on where to go and what you’ll need.
If you’re looking for some inspiration for your next cycling trip – then make sure you take a look at our Top 5 Scottish Cycling Routes – with great information on these routes and links to find out more about getting out on two wheel on the longest day of the year.
Climb A Munro
Hiking and climbing the mountains can be a great way for you to get into more outdoor activities, with a range of difficulties and challenges. Whether you’re an avid walker or you’re giving this a go for the first time as a great way to spend the longest day of the year – Munros can be climbed solo or with a team of your friends. Reaching the top isn’t everything though, you’re guaranteed some pretty spectacular views on the way up and down, so long as the great Scottish weather doesn’t interfere too much!
For beginners, we’d recommend climbing Conic Hill in the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park or the classic Arthur’s Seat in Edinburgh. Why not discover Britain at its best with the wonderful information and products from Ordnance Survey – click the link below to find out more.