Stand up paddleboarding and surfing
With our wide, shallow beaches and shimmering lakes, Wales is a great place to get on a board. Stand up paddleboarding, also known as SUP, is one of the fastest growing watersports - probably because it's far easier to get to grips with than surfing! Discover these standout places to stand up paddleboard in Wales.
If surfing is more your thing, there are lots of places to learn to surf in Wales. Pembrokeshire, Gower and the Llŷn Peninsula offer wide beaches, with easy regular surf. You can book lessons year-round at numerous certified surf schools.
Kayaking and canoeing
If standing up to paddle seems like hard work, then feel free to sit down! Whether it's a family canoe on a mountain lake, a pulse-racing descent on a whitewater raft or a wild kayak across a pristine estuary, there's plenty to keep you busy.
Discover the top spots for canoeing and kayaking in Wales.
Gorge walking, canyoning and coasteering
Of course you don't need to be on a board to enjoy some watery adventures. Hiking through ancient valleys is given an extra twist if you're kitted out to get wet! Gorge walking (or canyoning) involves scrambling, abseiling and swimming your way deep into unexplored terrain. You'll see parts of Wales few get to see: Snowdonia is a great place to try gorge walking.
Wales is the spiritual home of coasteering - which is the seaborne equivalent of gorge walking. Pull on a wetsuit, buoyancy aid, helmet, gloves and boots and your guide will show you how to jump, scramble and swim around the coastline.
It is essential that you do these activities with a qualified guide.
Golf is an ideal activity if you're looking for space in the outdoors. Golf courses in Wales offer hugely varied terrain and spectacular views of mountains and sea. You'll find a warm welcome at our courses. Check availability and book your tee time in advance to avoid disappointment.
There are few things better for calming the mind than the tang of sea air, the rush of the waves and a wild sandy beach all to yourself. Away from the busy months of summer, many of our beaches in Wales can be wonderfully remote. What could be a better way to forget the confusion of everyday life than a bracing stroll with only the curlews and seagulls for company?
Fancy a stroll? We have more than 20,000 miles of public footpaths to explore and our National Parks account for nearly a quarter of the country. With so much space, you won't see many people, particularly during the quieter months. Lesser visited spots to revel in the solitude include the Cambrian Mountains, the Anglesey coast and the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley.
Read more about walking in Wales.
Open water swimming
People all over the country are discovering the invigorating delights of open water swimming. Sure it can be chilly, but that's the appeal - that jolt of cold is just the tonic for getting your endorphins rushing and your pulse pumping. Discover locations to go open water and wild swimming in Wales.
Swimming in open water is very different to swimming in a pool. Unseen currents, cold water and waves make it much more challenging. Join a local club or learn from experts before taking the plunge - we always recommend using a guide or swimming with a club in open water. Read more top tips on how to swim safely.
With peaceful rivers like the River Teifi in Carmarthen or the Tywi in West Wales, carp-rich lakes and pike-filled reservoirs, there's space for everyone to cast a line and relax, and you don't need to be an experienced angler to enjoy fishing in Wales.
We also have 750 miles of coastline with lots of spots to fish from the shore. During the summer months, small boat charters are available for brilliant days out for all the family too.
Making a trip of it?
Self catering accommodation options allow you to schedule your holiday day your way. Stock up on tasty local produce like crumbly cheeses, tasty lamb, fresh fruit and fragrant honey and after enjoying time outdoors in the fresh air together you can cwtsh up for a quiet night in.
Choose from a holiday cottage, a campsite or a caravan park, there's are so many options.
Search for accommodation providers.
In summer months there are campsites in every corner of Wales, offering peace and tranquillity with miles of countryside or coastline outside your tent flap. If you're planning on camping in Wales, make sure you book a site in advance to avoid disappointment.
With your own log burner inside a funky cabin or sturdy yurt, a bit of wind and rain won't bother you. There all kinds of cool glamping options in Wales and many stay open year round. Fans of sustainable holidays particularly love them as lots are eco-friendly and off-grid. We've rounded up some of the most stunning glamping spots in Wales.
If you're the proud owner of a campervan or caravan, then Wales is a great place for a getaway. With mystical mountains, rolling hills and crashing breakers as standard when it comes to scenery, the view from the windows won't be too shabby either. Unsurprisingly, Wales is very popular for motorhome and caravan holidays, so please book in advance and don't park anywhere other than an officially designated site.
When it comes to self catering cottages and apartments, you're spoilt for choice in Wales. There are plenty of cosy cottages where you can curl up in front of a log fire after a day stomping across the Welsh countryside.
Hotels and guesthouses
If you prefer to let someone else do the cooking, there are boutique boltholes, world class international hotels and cosy B&Bs to welcome you. Search for accommodation for your next holiday.
Exploring the outdoors is fantastic fun, but please read up on the risks and make sure you are prepared.
- Follow these tips from the RNLI for staying safe on the Welsh coast.
- Visit AdventureSmart.uk for further information on how to stay safe whilst exploring Wales.