In Activities

Summer Holiday Activities: Geocaching

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Now that summer has arrived, the panic about how to keep the kids amused over the holidays truly begins. Avoiding the ‘I’m bored’ moans can be tricky, especially while they are so attached to their computer games and the sofa. If you can lure them outside, with some exciting activities, then everyone can benefit by making the most of the sunshine (while it lasts) and getting a bit of exercise at the same time.

That’s why we have put together some alternative adventures to get the kids outdoors and will feature one per week on our blog. This week we look at Geocaching.

Using a map geocaching

Remember to bring a map and compass in case your GPS device stops working!

What?

Geocaching is basically a giant worldwide treasure hunt…why wouldn’t the kids love it?! They will be happy to lead the hunt and will unwittingly get a bit of exercise along the way.

The treasure is a ‘cache’ (usually a container with a logbook inside, but may contain other random bits and bobs) and the aim is to find the cache using the coordinates of its location. You can either go old school and use a map, or make it a bit easier and use a GPS device like your smartphone.

Once you have found your treasure, you simply sign the logbook and hide it away again for the next person to find.

How?

To start your geocaching adventures all you need to do is register an account on the website for free here or download the smartphone app. Then you will be able to search for caches in your area or wherever you choose; with over 2 million active geocaches worldwide, you’ll be spoiled for choice!

Next you can plan your hunt; incorporate a nice walk in the countryside or a picnic and you have a full day’s worth of fun…away from the couch!

Where?

The great thing about geocaching is that you can do it anywhere! There may be caches located outside your house or in the local park, but you can also search while on holiday or if you fancy a day out further afield.

There are caches in cities and out in the middle of nowhere, so it depends on what type of adventure you want to have. If you know you are heading on holiday, do a search in that area before you go so you can seek out the top trails.

There are different levels of difficulty, so check the ratings before you head off. A one star rating is probably what you would be looking for if taking a young child with you.

There is even a cache on the International Space Station…that one might be a bit more difficult to reach though!

What to Wear

This depends on where you are searching. Check the terrain ratings before you go so you can be prepared for longer hikes, uphill stretches etc.

Usually a good pair of comfy walking boots or trainers will come in handy. Packing your waterproofs is also a good idea when geocaching in the UK and of course you want to be comfortable so suitable outdoor gear for yourself and the kids is essential.

Don’t forget to take a pen to sign the book, a map and compass in case your GPS stops working, as well as a torch to shine on darker hiding places.

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