In the current times we live in, it is more important than ever to take time out of your week to spend time outdoors. Surrounding yourself with nature and fresh air can have more benefits than you realise; it is just one way for us to easily and quickly appreciate the planet around us. It can help us build a deep-rooted connection with nature which can really help to drive sustainable living choices that are vital to the future of the planet.
But why else is it so important to spend in nature? Nick Fletcher, the founder of Absolutely Bear, a men’s clothing brand that aims to reconnect more urbanites with their roots in nature, explains the benefits of spending time in nature to a person’s wellbeing:
- You can appreciate wildlife and the planet’s ecosystem
We share this planet with many animals, species and ecosystems. Even in central London or a built-up city, nature is all around us and on our doorstep. Kew Gardens and Richmond Park even feature in the UK’s most scenic Instagram spots as proof! Time outdoors can be a great way to appreciate and feel connected to the wider world and habitats around us.
- It helps you to de-stress and re-calibrate
In the hustle and bustle of everyday life when we are juggling a social life, family and friend meetups and work, it’s hard to create the time to pause and reflect. Going on a walk in a scenic place or even just near local woodlands, is a quick and easy way to relax and take a break from the usual chaos of routine and urban life. Just 30 minutes or one hour walking outdoors each day, breathing in fresh oxygen and getting exercise is a sure-fire way to feel refreshed and grounded.
- It’s got lots of added mental health benefits
Walking and spending time outdoors also has great mental health benefits. Often walking is an activity done with a friend or family member and therefore has significant links to happiness levels and endorphins associated with laughter and human interaction.
Understanding the benefits of spending time outdoors is great, but where are the best places to go? As part of Absolutely Bear’s latest study, we conducted research into the most Instagrammed nature spots in the UK and here are the top five most popular spots:
Lake District is officially the UK’s largest national park so it is no surprise to see its beauty recognised in posts on Instagram. Containing 16 lakes and more than 150 high peaks, this popular nature spot is a favourite beyond the UK with international tourists too. Be sure to check out one of England’s highest and most prominent mountains based within the Lake District – Scafell Pike – if you’re up for a 5 mile walk and climb.
Dorset downs is an absolute nature gem in the southwest of England. Collectively, these 40 hills of differing sizes are a hiking hotspot for Brits, and attractive not just for their natural beauty, wildlife, and views, but also for their archaeological history and nature conservation site status.
Stonehenge is a well-known prehistoric monument situated in Wiltshire. Listed as an English Heritage site, this collection of vertical Sarsen standing stones is one of the seven wonders of the world! A walk in its Salisbury Plains surroundings is sure to connect you with your Neolithic ancestors and stun you with its mystery, beauty and sheer size.
Kew Gardens’ stunning London botanic gardens are world-leading both in terms of its scientific research and internationally recognised plant species. The intricate and carefully crafted walking routes around the grounds is a beautiful day out for all the family.
Yorkshire Dales is another of the UK’s 15 national parks. With many unique species of moths, bats, butterflies and plants, this nature spot is popular with locals, national visitors and even international tourists alike. A walk here can be at leisure, or more intense on its own Three Peaks (Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen-y-ghent), where thousands of walkers take up the 24.5 mile circular route challenge in around 12 hours!
If you’d like to view more information about the study’s top 15 nature spots and see if there are any that are local to you, you can see the full list of the top 15 most Instagrammed nature spots here: https://www.absolutelybear.com/blog/most-instagrammed-nature-spots