Too little time for an adventure? Not sure where to find one? Worried about how you’ll cope or what it will cost? That’s because you haven’t discovered the microadventure!
A microadventure is defined as an “expedition” that is close to home, easy, cheap and can last less than 24 hours. If it includes a night outdoors under the stars then all the better, but it’s not necessary.
The microadventure has been coined by Alastair Humphreys, who has also published a new book, Microadventures: Local Discoveries, Great Escapes.
A widely travelled adventurer, the author now finds himself, like many of us, a parent, based in a city and with two young children. So he is a little more tied to the home than in the past couple of decades.
But instead of giving up on his love of adventures he has adapted the concept and enjoys his adventures closer to home and in mini (or micro) episodes.
Alastair, of London, says: “I thrive on adventures. I love the escapism and the chance to recharge my batteries. Even just an hour or two of discovering something new outdoors works well for me although I do like to be away for a night if I can. That’s even better.
“So, my microadventure might be sleeping overnight on top of a local hill, going wild swimming in a nearby river or lake, eating my dinner in the garden with the kids, whatever the weather, or walking a two-mile lap around my home.
“This last idea is perfect for people who are worried about going too far away form their homes. Simply get a map and chart an approximate lap of two, three or whatever miles around your house.
“Then set out to walk or cycle this route. I bet you’ll discover places you have never seen before and lots of natural environments. If I can, I try to find a wild spot to camp overnight.”
He said: “The book is part inspiration and part practical. I want people to be able to discover how to enjoy their own microadventures.”
He added: “We hear it all the time, that people say they are too busy or do not have the money to enjoy time outdoors. But adventures don’t need to be big, lengthy and expensive. They can be budget friendly, simple, short and enjoyed very close to most of our homes.
“And with every such experience comes so many benefits, including a chance to escape, gain new perspective and learn a little more about yourself. Micro adventures help people to refresh the button of their every day lives.”
5 microadventures for families
A home lap: Plot a lap on a map with your home at the centre. It could be two miles or 10 miles. Walk or cycle the route and stop at places you have never seen before. If you can, find a quiet spot to camp overnight.
Eat out: Invite your family or friends and enjoy a meal cooked over an open fire or stove in the great outdoors. This could take place in the garden, a local park, woodland or at the beach.
A 5-to-9 adventure: That’s 5pm to 9am. Leave the office behind, collect the family from home and find a local hilltop. Or take a train to a new place and then camp out overnight. You don’t need expensive camping kit if it’s a summer’s night, just a cheap survival bag and lots of warm layers.
Moon walk: See familiar places in a different light by walking somewhere close to your home by moonlight.
Sleep in the garden: Make your own tents and sleep with your kids in the back garden.