Fiona Outdoors logo My independent guide to the best of Scotland outdoors

Weekend fun: Active lifestyle ideas for the whole family

Written by Fiona

February 01 2024

Are you a parent who is keen to encourage an active lifestyle for the whole family? It’s important for both adults and children to do activities that keep them fit, while also nourishing your body with a healthy and balanced diet. But how do you go about including everyone in the family, even across age groups and different interests? Here are some ideas for active lifestyle getaways:

A hiking adventure

Hiking is one of the most easily accessible activities to enjoy as a family. It is vital that you find a way to make the hike exciting for all ages.

To start with, do not plan to walk too far because children will not thank you for it. Make the hike short and interesting, then you can build up the distances with the next hikes.

Include everyone in the planning. Perhaps you could study a local map together and find a hill summit to walk to. Better still if it has a trig pillar to bag. Or how about walking a section of a waymarked trail?

Walks that include places of interest along the way, such as a beach or a play park, or the chance to see wildlife will make the activity feel like less of a chore.

It is always a good idea to take snacks with you, just to keep the kids going, or promise a picnic. If you can make a walk fun in some way, then the chances are hiking will become a regular hobby.

Go camping

Hiking is one thing, but combining it with camping turns it into an even better adventure. Camping isn’t just about sleeping under the stars, although that is a great benefit and wonderful thing to do. But it’s also about problem solving, lifting and carrying camping gear and learning how to be self-sufficient. In Scotland you can wild camp, so long as you do so responsibly, or you could choose to include a campsite as part of your longer hiking adventure.

Family cycling

If you are looking for an alternative way to spend your weekend while still being active, then you could try a family bike ride. It’s possible to cycle as a group of different ages and fitnesslevels by making the right choice of location.

Start with a flat, off-road route and build up the miles and the hills week by week. You might find oyu enjoy cycling so much that you plan a cycling – in which case you may want to look at cycle travel insurance that can offer you extra protection while you are away. Cycling is a great way to increase fitness and your activity.

Watersports offer fun and fitness

There are many different water-based activities to try as a family, including swimming, water skiing, kayaking, Canadian canoeing, sailing and stand-up paddle boarding. It’s a good idea to learn the basics by joining an organised course or session first. Look for family sessions to ensure it is fun for all ages.

Many families enjoy these activities as part of a sunny holiday, or you could join a club locally if you live near the coast, a river or canal.

Let’s hope this has inspired you for a more active lifestyle with your family this year.

More Like This


How To organise a large wheeled suitcase for a month-long trip


Seb Batchelor and Katie Wilson win Lairig Ghru Hill Race 2024


Ewan Brown sets new Highland Cross record and Cat Graves retains female title


Walks on the Outer Hebrides – and other gems


The Postie’s Path walk on Harris, Outer Hebrides


Book review: Running Challenges: 100 of the best runs across Great Britain