HIKING PYRENEES, BARCELONA

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HIKING PYRENEES, BARCELONA

guided hiking Pyrenees near barcelona

Guided group hiking in the Pyrenees near Barcelona

An incredible long weekend hike we organised in May, where we picked them up from Barcelona airport on the Thursday evening, all ready to for a weekend of adventure 1hr 30min drive from Barcelona.

We're looking forward to more adventures next year, discovering more of Spains incredible Pyrenees.

If you're visiting Barcelona, please check out my new blog with link in profile: 'Best Season to Hike in Barcelona', for some ideas on what to do throughout the seasons.

Also look out for my new blog coming towards the end of the week, on the Long Weekend Hike we organised in May, and I'll l discuss the route and the epic Refuge we stayed in, next to this photo.

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BEST SEASON TO HIKE IN BARCELONA

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BEST SEASON TO HIKE IN BARCELONA

BEST SEASON TO HIKE IN BARCELONA

We’re very lucky working and living in Barcelona, where we have the ocean and mountains on our doorstep, with an amazing Mediterranean climate. Every month is unique - snowshoeing in the Pyrenees, hiking & swimming the Costa Brava or enjoying the autumn colours of Montseny Mountain.

Hiking & Swimming Cami de Ronda in August

Hiking & Swimming Cami de Ronda in August

 

spring

Hiking Barcelona & Catalonia in spring is the perfect time to visit, with nice spring weather between April - May, it’s an ideal time to adventure into the Mountains surrounding Barcelona.

With a high probability of snow in April in some of the higher peaks above 1500m, it’s still possible to discover the many mountain ranges close to Barcelona. Alta Garrotxa, Montserrat, Cami de Ronda Costa Brava, Collserola National Park, Serra de Montsant and the Parc de Garraf which borders the wine region of Penedes. Here you’ll find great conditions and trails completely in the wild away from the hustle of Barcelona. We even did a weekend hike in Alta Garrotxa, in December last year and although a little chilly in the evening, we had great warm sunshine during the day.

If you’re keen to venture further into the Pyrenees, it’s possible to ski in the morning and be on the beach in the afternoon, with resorts like Molina only a 1hr 30min drive away from Barcelona. Snow shoeing, Ski Touring and skiing will be possible until around April and this year we had a rare dump of snow in May.

Hiking in Barcelona also doesn’t need to involve a long day in the mountains. In spring it’s a great time to enjoy a pleasant walk in the countryside, enjoying the valley of Montseny National Park and combine with the Calcot Season, where you enjoy traditional delicious spring onions. These are cooked on the barbecue and eaten with a nutty sauce.

Hiking in Alta Garrotxa, July.

Hiking in Alta Garrotxa, July.

 

summer

Summer in Barcelona can be hot and for the best hiking, it’s best to head into the mountains discovering much needed waterfalls and mountain pools. It is possible to do lots of hiking in the summer, but specifically the months of July and August, the temperatures can be up to 37 degrees at times.

Into the Pyrenean Mountains of Cadi-Moixero, Alta Perineu and the incredible Aigüestortes i Estany of Saint Maurici National Park, you’ll find some of the most incredible scenery and you’ll find the temperatures considerably more manageable. Climbing, hiking, whitewater rafting, sleep in a mountain refuge, canoeing, paddle boarding on the the mountain lakes. There’s so much to do. In the mountains you’ll actually find it a lot quieter, with the majority of people descending to the beaches of the Costa Brava or near Tarragona.

Barcelona throughout the summer is incredible if you can handle the heat, where the evenings will come alive with locals not eating dinner until 10pm and shops open until late. In addition towards the end of June, is the Festival de Sant Joan, where the Catalonians celebrate in honour of John the Baptist. In Barcelona it’s a night of fireworks, where people will head to the beach to party. It’s a bigger party than New Years.



 

AUTUmn

Autumn and Spring my favourite time in Barcelona where you find it a lot quieter in Barcelona and the weather still warm enough to sit outside in the evening and enjoy a nice dinner.

September and October are great months for hiking Barcelona, in particular Garrotxa the volcanic region of Catalonia, where you can follow various trails on offer and combine with a hot air balloon, for a birds eye view of the various craters. In addition autumn is particularly good for Catalonia’s vast amount of bird life. In Catalonia we have various different habitats which makes the area the largest in Spain for different types of species.

In Montseny National Park the autumnal colours will be blooming from October to November, with mushroom picking at it’s peak time. A favourite wild mushroom are Bolets which can be found throughout Montseny and are a favourite at the various mountain restaurants.

At the base of Montserrat Mountain Barcelona in December

At the base of Montserrat Mountain Barcelona in December

 

winter

Winter in Barcelona and Catalonia is stunningly nice with the temperature rarely dropping below 10 degrees. The beaches become deserted where it’s possible have a rare stroll along the beach in the morning. It’s possible to walk your dogs on the beach in the winter and also kitesurf, which is not aloud throughout the busy summer months.

My favourite beach is Bogatell in winter and further up towards Marbella Beach - always quieter than Barceloneta for example. A great walk is to walk along the beach in the morning and enjoy the peace and quiet, very rare throughout the year in Barcelona.

A favourite mountain to hike near Barcelona is Montserrat, where it’s possible to take the train from Placa Espanya, which takes around 50min. Although sometimes a bit colder in the morning, to sometimes 2-5 degrees, it always warms up in the afternoon. If you’re up for a challenge it’s possible to hike from the base to the top and back down, which takes around 5-6 hours for people with good fitness. If you’re keen for something more gentle, it’s also possible to drive or take the funicular to the Monastery and either walk to the top Sant Jeroni at 1236m elevation or just have a gentle walk around the Monastery. Something more gentle would be to walk to the Cross of Sant Miguel, which has great views of the valley and Monastery below.

Christmas in Barcelona is very different for me personally coming from Scotland and although there is some Christmas markets, they don’t compare to markets you’d find in the Uk. Catalans biggest day to celebrate is on the 5th & 6th of January, where the Three Kings (Tres Reis Mags) arrive with presents for the children.


Snow Shoeing in Molina Pyrenees

Snow Shoeing in Molina Pyrenees


best hiking guides in barcelona

If you enjoyed my blog please share it through the links below. Also please check out my Best Hikes Routes Near Barcelona , for some of my best hikes in Barcelona.










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Barcelona Hiking Tours

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Barcelona Hiking Tours

Hiking Barcelona season is coming , September & October my favourite months in Barcelona to venture into the Catalonian & Pyrenees mountains and also enjoy some pool or beach time. Not too hot, not too cold. Perfect! 😎


If you’re hiking Barcelona or Catalonia, please have a look at my new blog in profile, my Best Hiking Routes Near Barcelona, for some inspiration.

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HIKING TOUR MONTSENY BARCELONA WITH MERRELL EUROPE

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HIKING TOUR MONTSENY BARCELONA WITH MERRELL EUROPE

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BEST HIKING ROUTES NEAR BARCELONA

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BEST HIKING ROUTES NEAR BARCELONA

My best hiking routes near Barcelona

Throughout Barcelona, Catalonia we’re very lucky to have a vast amount of mountains in close proximity, including the Eastern Mid-Pyrenees of Alta Garrotxa, Pre-Pyrenees of the Cadi-Moxiero Natural Park, Serra de Montsant Natural Park to the West, Montseny National Park and the infamous Montserrat Mountain, to name a few.

Below have listed my top hiking routes near Barcelona:

  1. Montseny National Park

Montseny Natural Park is one of the largest mountain ranges closest to Barcelona and you can enjoy an abundance of some of the best walking & hiking trails near Barcelona, away from busy touristy areas.

You’ll find the vast majority of tourists will head to Montserrat for a hike, which is definitely beautiful but a go to mountain for tourists and can be busy at weekends. Montseny is always quiet and you can sometimes not see anyone for the whole day hiking, completely immersing yourself in nature.

From the Arc de Triomf Train station in Barcelona you take the R3 line towards Vic where you get off at Figaro-Montmany, which is approximately 50min north from Barcelona.

There’s various routes on offer from Figaro for all levels of fitness, but there’s a 12km loop that leads you to Tagamanent Hill and back down a beautiful ridge, with incredible views.

Throughout the hike you’ll visit some of the mountains most historic areas including Ermita Santa Maria de Tagamanent, which is a church located on the top of Tagamanent hill.

La Masia El Bellver, a local restaurant on the hill for a drink, something to eat and rest.

Col Can Creu, Coll St Marti.

 


2. Montsant Natural Park, Siurana

Sitting north of Tarragona it is approximately 1hr 45min drive from Barcelona towards the West and is a go to place for hikers and climbers.

We visited Siurana in April and slept in the camper next to the small village of Siurana. Was blown away by its beauty and the star gazing in the evening was incredible.

Siurana is small medieval village located on a cliff, where you’ll find parking and also a great refuge, if you wanted to come for the weekend. It’s called Refugio Ciriac Bonet and is situated in an idyllic location, serving food and drinks. There’s an great terrace sitting on the edge of a cliff, where the sunset is incredible and is perfect to finish the hike.

The hike we followed was called “Camí de la Trona” and is famous for hiking and you’ll find lots of climbers throughout to watch.

We started the route from Pantá de Siurana, following a river which lead us to 3 turquoise pools called Toll de la Palla, then we head up to “La Trona”, until we reached the small medieval town called Siurana. The pools were cold but perfect in the heat of the sun.

After a quick bocata with Ham & Cheese, we head back to the Siurana Reservoir (L’embassament de Siurana). It was a loop route, 13Km in total and 400mts elevation gain.

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3. Sant Aniol d’Aguja, sadernes, Alta Garrotxa

The Turquoise pools and Waterfall of Sant Aniol is the perfect hike to do with friends or family for a great day out.

The route starts next to the hostel in Sadernes (https://www.garrotxahostalatge.cat/ca/sales-de-llierca/associats/restaurant-hostal-de-sadernes?id=4) where it’s possible to sleep or in the campsite next door. Before entering Sadernes you’ll pass the medieval bridge of Valenti, crest beautifully over the gorge until you arrive in Sadernes, with parking available 100m past the hostel.

The Path of Valencians, follows the river for approximately 7km, where you’ll find stunning pools to swim and cool off, until you reach the chapel of Sant Aniol. The main waterfall sits 5 min walk past Sant Aniol and although a long hike, would definitely recommend. It’s also possible to shorten the hike and stop in many of the pools on route if you wanted.

 

4. Camino de ronda, costa brava

The Camino De Ronda is a 136 mile trail that starts from Blanes in Spain and finishes in the city of Collioure in France. It follows the coast where you’ll discover hidden turquoise coves, to swim and cool off. It is infamous for hikers around the world.

Would recommend a hike where you start from Cala de Castell, which is next to the town of Palamos and follow the coastline towards the Botanical Gardens of Cap Roig and the stunning small fishing village of Calella de Palafrugell. The hike will take around 2-4 hours and is approximately a 8km loop.

The hike starts and finishes on the Wild Beach of Castell which is in the Cap Roig National Park. From here towards the Botanical Gardens of Cap Roig, you’ll find crystal clear coves including Cala Roca Bona and Cala Estreta to name a few. In addition you’ll discover ruins of Iberian settlements on the hills behind, Old Catalan Farmhouses and a small known paint studio of Salvador Dali.

 

5. Mont-rebei gorge

This is one of favourite hikes in Catalonia, an amazing experience that combines hiking, swimming and canoeing as options, if you want. Although nearly 3 hours drive from Barcelona you wont be disappointed, is definitely worth the trip.

The gorge is situated on the border of Catalonia and Aragon, and follows the Noguera Ribacorcana River, where you’ll discover dug out trails and laddered stairs on cliff in excess of 500m in areas.

Would recommend you start the hike from a parking area called Moll de Corca and we used a company called Ager Aventura, where they give you a ride over the lake to start the hike. There’s lots of options to consider but we decided to firstly hike along the gorge, which is approximately 10km and we returned in the canoe, which was 7km. Would actually recommend you do the canoe first, because we had a reasonable head wind on the return and was a bit wet. Was happy nevertheless, but something to consider, if you have kids or would rather a more pleasant canoe. For more detail, please check out my blog on my more detail of the hike.

 

If you’d like to organise a private hiking trip with Work Colleagues, Friends or Family, to one of the locations above, then please get in touch and we’ll be able to bespoke a trip to your needs.

Also please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you require any further information on the hiking trips above.

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NEW BOUTIQUE HOTEL IN PYRENEES, BARCELONA

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NEW BOUTIQUE HOTEL IN PYRENEES, BARCELONA

The mountains of Alta Garrotxa, Catalonia, Pyrenees near Barcelona, one of my top places to visit when escaping the hustle and bustle of Barcelona life.


Last week we stayed at @canserolahotel , an incredible boutique hotel at the foot of the mountains and we’re now super excited to be offering Can Serola as an option of accommodation for our hiking and cycling tours.


Only open until September this year and once again open in April 2020. Get in touch if you fancy joining us for some hiking, fitness or cycling

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CLUBHOUSE HIKE BARCELONA

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CLUBHOUSE HIKE BARCELONA

The toasty weather of Barcelona is here and I’m already dreaming of Woolly jumpers but around the corner we’ve got the months of September, October and even November, my favourite months to visit Barcelona and enjoy our epic mountains with great weather.

In September we’re super excited to be starting our first Hike Club Barcelona for locals only, where we’ll be organising a day out in the Catalonian Mountains.

Location will be subject to weather but hopefully the infamous Pedraforca, the peak on this pic.

Everyone welcome of all fitness levels and nationalities. Get in touch if you’re keen to get involved?

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HIKING ALTA GARROTXA PYRENEES

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HIKING ALTA GARROTXA PYRENEES

Back in Alta Garrotxa Catalonian Pyrenees for a weekend guiding Rocio & Krlos from Mexico, chasing waterfalls , sleeping at Refugio de Bassegoda and an early morning hike on Sunday to the peak of Puig de Bassegoda at 1373m elevation.

A super hot weekend in Catalonia with some tough hiking along part of the GR11 trail from Sant Aniol d’aguja.

An incredible weekend where we slept outside under the stars and always finishing with some beers at Sadernes.


Amazing couple who kick ass in the gym throughout the week, to insure they can enjoy amazing experiences like this at the weekend.

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Cycling the Costa Brava, Spain

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Cycling the Costa Brava, Spain

Swapping these hiking legs for cycling, cruising the country paths of Girona near Begur with team @apex.management from Chamonix.
The area around Begur is a great location to holiday if you’re up for some beach time and adventure.

Right on the Mediterranean with beautiful beaches like Platja Sa Tuna and many more on your doorstep.

On the Cami de Ronda hiking trail, where you can hike along the coast discovering little fishing villages like Llafranc and Calella de Palafrugell or more stunning turquoise blue Calas .

Next to some of the best cycling in Europe where you can tackle climbs like Els Angels next to Girona.

Incredible place to adventure and combine with some much needed beach time.
#onelifecycle

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Hiking in the Pre-Pyrenees within Cadi-Moixero Natural Park.

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Hiking in the Pre-Pyrenees within Cadi-Moixero Natural Park.

A long weekend in the camper discovering hiking trails around this beaut Pedraforca, in the Pre-Pyrenees, within the Cadi-Moixero Natural Park.

Was blown away by this mountain which has an elevation of 2506.4m with two iconic fork shaped peaks, more noticeable from the other side.

No summit at the weekend 🙁 but will be stomping this in a couple of weeks time.

Always in need of some company, so if you’re visiting or living in Barcelona and fancy joining me, please let me know?
#onelifehikeit

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Refuge to Refuge Long Weekend Hiking Barcelona Tour Pyrenees

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Refuge to Refuge Long Weekend Hiking Barcelona Tour Pyrenees

An incredible long weekend on our first Refuge to Refuge Hiking tour with my brothers of another mother, in Alta Garrotxa, Pyrenees.

Like the boys said - it’s something you always talk about doing but just never get the chance. Busy with work or the daily routine.

Great effort from everyone and inspires you to further more, grasp life by the scruff and love it to the max. Once in a lifetime experiences.

Fancy a long weekend hiking in the Pyrenees? Get in touch.

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WALKING AND HIKING, MONT - REBEI GORGE

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WALKING AND HIKING, MONT - REBEI GORGE

Hike & Canoe, Mont-Rebei Gorge

Mont-Rebei Gorge is approximately 2 hrs 45 min from Barcelona by car where you’ll find it nestled on the border of Aragon and Catalonia where the gorge forms the border. It’s a bit of a drive from Barcelona but definitely worth the trip and there’s always an option to spend the night at one on the mountain refuges there. We were lucky enough to have our van/campervan, where we slept for the night, but if you were keen to stay somewhere for the night, would recommend a small hostel called Alberg de Montfalcó http://www.alberguemontfalco.com/el-albergue . It’s situated at the start of the gorge and is the prefect location, with stunning views.

We started the hike from a parking area called Moll de Corcá, where we had organised with a company to rent canoes once we hiked to the end of the gorge. There’s a few companies to choose from and different options, but we decided to hike from the start to the end of the gorge and return on a canoe along the river. The company also gave us a small boat ride to the other side of the lake, where we started the hike.

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Once we were dropped off by the boat we started with a climb above the West side of the lake, where you’ll have some great views of the lake behind. At the top of the climb approximately 3 km you’ll find the Alberg de Montfalcó hostel, where we stopped for a quick drink and chat to other hikers in the area. Great place to locate yourself for a few days of hiking in the area, where they serve food and you’ll find other like-minded hikers there.

Passing the hostel we continued the hike down through a small forest until it opened up alongside the river, where the views begin to get stunning. Along the river you’ll be faced with incredible laddered stairs on the cliffs in excess of 500m in height on the cliff above. Perfectly safe but if you’re scared of heights, get ready to conquer your fears.

Once up and over the laddered stairs you’ll descend down and over a small bridge crossing the river. The path will then begin to traverse on the other side of the river and it’s when the hike really starts to get incredible. The path leads into trails cut into cliff, with shear drops to the side into the river and the cliffs thundering above - it’s breathtaking. You’ll see people on canoes paddling below and there’s ample locations for some beautiful pictures. Probably the best bit of the hike.

Follow the trail along until it opens up and once again you’ll cross another small bridge, where your canoe will be awaiting for you. Lot’s of options to consider, where you can either hike back the way you came, take a boat ride back to the start or if you’re feeling up to it, jump on a Canadian canoe and paddle the 7km back to the start. Be warned the wind tends to pick up in the afternoon, so be careful to check conditions before you start or you’ll be faced with a strenuous long paddle back.

For us the Canoe was definitely worth it and gives you a completely different perspective of the gorge. We firstly paddled through the steep sided gorge, until it opened up and it’s then, we decided to park up on the waters edge and take a well earned swim in the water. The water was the perfect temperature to cool off and get a bite to eat before paddling our way home to the start.

Once we had finished the canoe it was time for a well earned beer and barbecue by the lake watching the sunset, next to the van. There was a few other camper vans parked up and a perfect location, minus the mosquitoes.

The hike in total is approximately 10km with a 7km return canoe. The hike itself is a moderate level and most people with an average level of fitness should be ok, but you need to be reasonably fit for the return canoe. Especially if the wind picks up in the afternoon.

The company we used was called Ager Aventura and the trip was: https://ageraventurat.com/kayak-congost-montrebei-montrebei-aragon-ruta-senderisme-embarcadero-masana-parquing .

An amazing day in nature and was a perfect stop over before we headed to the Basque Country for some surfing.

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Walking & Hiking Montserrat Mountain

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Walking & Hiking Montserrat Mountain

Montserrat Mountain

Montserrat Mountain is one of our most popular hiking routes, due to it’s close proximity to Barcelona, it has some of the best views of Catalonia.

Our walking & hiking tours start from Placa d’Espanya train station where we take the R5 line towards Manresa and get off the train in the small down of Monistrol de Montserrat, at the base of the mountain, where we begin the 19km loop to the top and back of Sant Jeroni at 1237m.

Leaving the station with Montserrat in front, we’ll turn right down the hill and stop at a great little cafe called Bar Peret for a quick coffee and croissant.

From here we cross the bridge and through the under pass tunnel, and join onto a path called Pas de la Canaleta, where it’ll bring you out into a small square. There you’ll find a town hall and also a great hikers bar, Bar la Roca, where we’ll finish the day with a beer.

Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey

The first part of the Walk takes approximately 1hr 30min to the Monastery, where we have views of the Santa Cova Chapel, Sant Miguel Cross above and some breathtaking views down the valley.

At the Monastery we’ll take the direct route up behind through the gulley. The trail from the Monastery leads us to some leg burning stairs at the beginning, where we begin the 1hr 45min stage to the top. The first part has lots of stairs but it eventually becomes flatter throughout the middle section, until we reach close to the top.

At the top the views are breathtaking and during the week you might be the only person there on off peak months.

When descending we take another route that loops around the side of the mountain passing the Sant Joan funicular, Sant Miguel Chapel and Sant Miguel cross, where you’ll have stunning views for a great pic of the Monastery.

Hiking Barcelona
Montserrat Mountain

Once walking through the square, up the stone stairs and walking down the road for approximately 30m, you’ll find a trail on the right hand side. Walk up the trail and you’ll open up to the picture below. Here you’ll have two options. First option to the left is slightly longer but has a gentler gradient for the first few km, although you’ll have to face some steep steps towards the end. The other trail to the right, is shorter but steeper and more direct. You tend to get better views in my opinion with the longer trail to the left and can be a good starter to get warmed up.

Walking & Hiking Montserrat Mountain
Sant Jeroni Montserrat Mountain
Walking Barcelona

Once back at the Monastery and had a walk around inside the chapel, we’ll descend back to the square in Monistrol de Montserrat and have a well earned beer at the local bar, before catching the last train home to Barcelona.

Montserrat Mountain has lot’s of different trails and you can adjust the hike to suit your fitness levels.

If you’re keen to join us, we run weekly trips and you’re more than welcome to come.

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Winter time thoughts

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Winter time thoughts

I love the winter. There's nothing better than training in the cold, crisp December air, knowing that you are keeping your body healthy through the winter months. Swimming in London Fields Lido is possible all year round and I like to mix up my training for clients as much as possible. It's the wrong time of the year though for Wild Swimming, which I did lots of over the summer of 2014. Want to read more about one of the swims I did? My friend Lucy took me exploring round the coastline of Wales and she tells the story of our adventure here.

That's what fitness and getting active is all about.

 

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