If you are like us then you love being outdoors no matter what the weather is like or what time of the year it is. To help you carry on enjoying the outdoors all year round, we have put together a list of nighttime outdoor activities that you can do no matter the season.
Finding activities that you can enjoy all year round can be a challenge in itself due to the Great British weather and the change in time it gets dark across the seasons. There is a solution to these problems, however, and that solution is simple: 'preparation'. Being properly prepared means always expecting the worst while hoping for the best. Simply 'owning' the right gear isn't enough though, as making sure you actually have the right tools with you at the right time is essential, as is ensuring that they're in good working order.
Below are some of the items that we would recommend you always have with you during outdoor activities. You may not always need them, but it's better to have them and not need them than need them and not have them.
- Hat & Gloves - The weather can be unpredictable so it is a good idea to keep a hat and gloves in your bag as your hands and head feel the cold first. Hats can also be worn to shield your head from the sun, making them a great year-round accessory.
- Large Insulated Bottle - It's always important to stay hydrated and with an insulated water bottle, you can make sure your drinks remain cool or warm for as long as possible. Available in black or metallic, Red Original insulated water bottles have a 750ml capacity and can keep drinks hot for 12 hours or cold for 24.
- First Aid Kit - This does not need to be too over the top, just the bare essentials such as plasters, emergency blankets, some tweezers and some antiseptic wipes, etc. If you want to make sure you have exactly what you will want should something bad happen, why not put your own first aid kit together?
- Waterproof Active Jacket - Regardless of the weather, you can always rely on a waterproof jacket to help keep you warm and dry. Our Red Original active jackets are not only waterproof but also lightweight designed to be packed down into compact storage pockets.
- Torch - If you are heading to the great outdoors at dusk, or there is a possibility that you could be out until dark for your safety you should always take a torch with you.
- Airbelt PFD - If you're an avid watersports enthusiast then you'll definitely want to make sure you have an Airbelt PFD. These personal floatation devices may be compact, but they're quick to put on, don't get in the way, and will help to keep you safe while in or on the water.
Now that you are aware of some of the essentials that you need, we can carry on with fun outdoor nighttime activities to try….
Stargazing is always great fun to do, no matter what your athletic abilities may be and also can be easily enjoyed all year round. The beauty of stargazing is that there is always something new to see, which means that it never becomes a boring activity to participate in. You can also enjoy stargazing alone or as a group, whichever you prefer to do most. If you are not too sure about what you are actually looking for or even where to go to get the best view, we’d recommend taking a look at Go Stargazing for more information.
Whether you head into your garden or venture to a local park or even further afield to get that clear unobstructed view, it’s a great way of sparking your creativity as well as being a fantastic stress reliever.
2. Outdoor Yoga
Yoga is an awesome night time activity and one that can easily be incorporated into night hikes or even in the comfort of your back garden if you prefer. With the cool, heavy air and the night time quiet, yoga in nature after dark is super relaxing.
Yoga has tons of health benefits as well, like increasing flexibility, strength, and mental calm. One thing associated with yoga is deep breathing too. Outdoor air is much cleaner than indoor, so when possible, so why not do yoga as a nighttime outdoor activity?
Yoga and paintball are vastly different nighttime outdoor activities, we know. But paintballing is an excellent nighttime activity to give a go with your friends. Many paintballing facilities across the UK are available at nighttime to have a go. You can also participate in the evening and avoid peak times which is a massive bonus if you have a busy lifestyle.
Hiking is an outdoor activity you can rely on all year round, rain or shine - which makes it a perfect addition to this list. A big part of what makes hiking fun is the unpredictability of nature. You can check the weather and get a rough understanding of the terrain, but you can never know for sure what challenges nature will throw at you. This is why it is always important to be prepared for any unpredicted weather conditions.
5. Nighttime Swimming
Swimming is great fun regardless of the time of the year, but something everybody should try at least once is night swimming (as made popular by REM). If you have access to a well lit outdoor pool then lucky you, but if you don’t or just prefer swimming in natural bodies of water, then you should try swimming around dusk when there is still some light (swimming when it's pitch black is never advised). Believe us though, slipping into a lake or the sea on a warm summer night is somehow both relaxing and invigorating at the same time. If you are going to attempt this nighttime outdoor activity during the colder months in open water, we would recommend that you take a closer look at our guide on cold water swimming for tips on how to stay safe and improve your mental wellbeing.
Nighttime swimming is amazing, but don’t get so lost in the moment that you forget to use common sense. Here are a few tips to help make the experience a positive one:
- Go with at least one person - In an event of an accident, it is crucial that you have someone else there with you so that they can help you/ get help and vice versa.
- Make sure you have adequate lighting - You would have seen on our list above that you should always carry a torch with you if you head out for nighttime outdoor activities. In addition to this, for night time swimming we would recommend a head torch too so you can keep your hands free.
- Stay in areas you feel comfortable - It is really important that you stick to areas that you recognise and feel comfortable in, as this will ensure that you do not find yourself in danger. Always air on the side of caution and if you get the urge to explore, don't. Wait until it's light and then you can explore to your heart's content.
- Be prepared after you have been for a swim - It is crucial to remember that the temperature can significantly drop at night time so you need to dry quickly and safely. We have a selection of outdoor changing robes that will ensure there are no awkward changing experiences and will get you warm, dry and stay covered.