Now that the clocks have sprung forward, we’ve gained an extra hour of glorious evening sunlight – and things are only going to get brighter. And while lazy post-work evenings spent sipping chilled wine in a pub garden are high up on the agenda, there’s no better time to pursue more active evening plans which make the most of the outdoors.
From cool new rooftop pop-ups, to outdoor sports clubs re-opening for the sunny season, there’s plenty of places to get your adrenaline fix.
Whether you’re into kayaking, climbing or want to find a new favourite hobby, here’s Stylist’s pick of the best al fresco activities to try this spring…
Put your hands up to the sky with rooftop yoga
Yogarise, the Peckham-based yoga collective, is bringing back its popular rooftop sessions at the Bussey Building for another season. Yogis can join its top teachers to practice their downward dog and child pose beneath the skies with amazing panoramic views of London.
Book: Yogarise rooftop classes will take place between May and September on Monday evenings and weekend mornings, at £13 a session, £60 for five, or £110 for 10 sessions. Yogarise.london.
Get high on a climbing adventure
New to climbing? Learn the ropes at The Castle in Stoke Newington, London, where introductory sessions can incorporate a go on the outdoor bouldering walls.
If you’ve found your footing on the climbing walls and want to graduate to some real crags, then there’s no better place to head than Stanage Edge in the Peak District – a legendary spot among the climbing community. There’s routes for every ability, from Grotto Slab for beginners to the ominously named Suicide Wall, for pros. It’s a popular spot all year round, but spring is the perfect time to catch views of the rolling hills with blue skies overhead.
Book: taster sessions at The Castle are £24 for one hours tuition, 4:1 climber to instructor ratio, starting at 7pm weekday evenings (castle-climbing.co.uk).
Find out more about climbing routes at Stanage Edge here.
Learn to fly
Want to learn to fly? Then these flying trapeze lessons are perfect for you – so long as you can muster the courage to throw yourself off the platform. If you’re London-based, Gorilla Circus’s exhilarating classes take place in leafy Regent’s Park during the summer, offering you the chance to learn the art of trapeze under clear blue skies (if the weather holds). The more frequent a flyer you become, the more tricks you can learn – from drop kicks to splits.
Kayak London's canals
London’s canals are a popular walking route, but why not swap the crowded footpaths for the water itself? A 6km kayak from Limehouse to Hackney Wick’s Crate Brewery will take you past the Limehouse Cut and River Lea, with a chance to see swans and plenty of other birdlife, plus you’ll by paddling through the sunset. Oh and to round things off, you can enjoy pizza and beers at Crate.
Book: tickets cost £39 and are available for 21 April and 12 May, from 6:30 to 9pm (secretadventures.org)
Paddle boarding has become one of Britain’s most popular water sports, and it’s not just because it does amazing things for your core – this balancing act provides one of the most serene ways to take in the views from the UK’s rivers. A trip from Brentford, Kew or Putney will give you the chance to see London’s skyline in a whole new light.
Jump in the pool
The health benefits of wild swimming are well documented – it even boosts your immune system. And with plenty of heated outdoor pools across the country there’s no excuse not to dash out of the office, fling on your bikini and dive in.
From 1930s art deco lidos to rooftop spa pools, find the best outdoor pool near you here.
Follow an art trail
You don’t have to be a daredevil to make the most of the great outdoors during the sunny season. The Line is a crowdfunded art walk between the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and The O2, following the waterways and the line of the Meridian. If you choose to take it, The Line will guide you past the most awe-inspiring (and Instagrammable) outdoor art in London. You can stop off at as many pubs as you please en route - your only obstacle is sundown. And seeing as it’s totally free that leaves more pennies for pints.
Discover the route at the-line.org
Kite surf on the Kent coast
After a day hauled up in the office, it doesn’t get much more exhilarating than kite-surfing on the open water. Kent Kitesurfing School in Whitstable offers beginner's session that will help you find your stride with the help of BKSA instructors.
Book: a 2.5 hour taster session costs £100 (kentkitesurfingschool.com).
Limber up with a canal-side Barre class
Frame is bringing its popular Barre class to the great outdoors this summer with a series of workout and brunch sessions at Granary Square. Take in the view during a low-impact session from the gym’s master trainer Gede -, designed to help you get lean and flexible - before digging into a delicious brunch by Granola for Gangsters.
Book: at MoveYourFrame.com. Classes start on 10 May.