It can sometimes be difficult to get back into a rhythm after spending a few months in hibernation away from the gym during winter. To get in shape for the warmer months ahead it’s time to shake off those winter blues and discover new ways to improve your fitness regime. Surf, kayak or even horseback, these spring gateways almost always guarantee fine weather and the perfect setting to get back on track to a healthier lifestyle. Here are 5 vacation ideas to shake it off and spring into action.
1. COASTAL WALKS
Australia has stunning coastline, with coastal boardwalks to match. Often overlooked in favour of the world- famous shorelines found in Sydney, Adelaide won’t disappoint travelers with it’s fragile coastal ecosystems steeped in history and stunning scenery.
BHR recommends the Hallett Cove Boardwalk otherwise known as the Marion Coastal Walking Trail, just over a 30 minute drive south from Adelaide’s CBD. A 5.1 kilometre clifftop boardwalk that can be walked or jogged, it gives visitors prime views of the expansive oceanic Great Australian Bight. For locals, the walk is a great option as a regular route to keep fit especially with the added challenges of different sets of stairs that descend, with steep gullies that cut through the cliffs.
Some of Australia’s most spectacular natural beauty can be found underwater with its marine heritage at the top of the world’s top scuba destinations. What is less known is that there are plenty of other spectacular reefs to explore in addition to the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef.
One favourite is the Fish Rock Cave, located 2 kilometres off Smoky Cape at the South West Rocks on the New South Wales Coast. Swimming among critically endangered species, this crucial habitat supports the grey nurse shark and during April to November hosts migrating Humpback whales and their calves.
Boasting Australia’s only true ocean cave at 125 metres, there are plenty of attractions for non-divers. A weekend can easily be spent at the charming town of South West Rocks visiting the relics of the Trial Bay Gaol, meandering around the walking tracks with dazzling views of the Pacific Ocean and visiting one of the oldest lighthouses in New South Wales: Smoky Cape Lighthouse.
3. HORSEBACK RIDING
While the obvious health benefits to horseback riding is a strong core and legs, the recreational sport is a great option if you want to improve mindfulness and connect with your surroundings. For a horseback riding holiday, Australia promises backdrops of unending beaches and mountainous ranges, ensuring an outback adventure like no other. You need to head to New South Wales mid-coast at Port Macquarie to enjoy sandy beach riding with plenty of wildlife sightings –dolphins being no exception. Boasting 17 uncrowded beaches, Port Macquarie is an idyllic destination for a guided group ride in the saddle, just watch out for the native kangaroos!
4. SURF’S UP
Delivering a full body workout, surfing is a great reason to enjoy time outdoors. A trip Down Under is definitely a surfer’s paradise, with so many beaches with waves for all levels of experience. BHR’s favourite is Bell’s Beach, the surfing capital of Victoria. Based 100 kilometres south-west of Melbourne, a stunning drive down the Great Ocean Road will get you to Bell’s Beach- home to the world’s largest continuing surfing competition. A dramatic backdrop of high cliffs, the swells from the Southern Ocean produce waves that rise as high a 5 metres but averages between 3 to 4 metres. For smaller waves, go to the popular cliff lined Jan Juc lying between Bells Beach and Torquay which is patrolled during the summer months.
If you are looking for an exotic holiday destination, heading to Tropical North Queensland is always a safe bet, and is even more thrilling if explored via kayak. Whether its virgin rainforest, or spotless blue sky vistas, the Cassowary Coast Region situated 4 kilometres off Australia’s East Coast and opposite the town of Mission Beach, you’re sure to find an activity to get the heart pumping.
The Coral Sea is easy to navigate if you have an experience kayak guide show you around the Family Islands National Park which is part of the Great Barrier Reef. Paddling your way through unspoilt coral reefs and marine life, several sea kayaking tours allow you to take a break on Dunk Island and snorkel the warm waters to catch a glimpse of the sea turtles and tropical fish. While you’re kayaking in the area, be sure to make a stop off at Hinchinbrook Island, one of Australia’s largest island national parks. Renowned for the diversity of its habitats from sandy beaches to mangrove forests, you’ll absolutely have something to talk about when you get home.