So, why am I writing this blog?

I’ve just read this article on a Facebook post (ooh, the power of the internet!!) and, after a couple of WhatsApp messages to my kids (mum of 4, definitely no more!)… here I am, after hours, tapping away at my laptop.

What’s the article?

It’s a Forbes post on ‘Why You Should Spend Your Money On Experiences, not Things’. 

Well done Forbes – it’s really taken me back to when my children were younger (they’re now 21 to 28 years in ages…. How scary is that?) and time shared at Christmas and on birthdays, and a 3 hour drive to go zorbing for all of 3 minutes before driving 3 hrs home again!

The focus of the article is that experience is not only important to us as humans but also essential at a ‘soul’ level. Experiences become part of our identity.

Why does that matter?

I actually asked my kids this one, because they had to put up with camping in force 7 storms at Three Cliffs Bay, indoor sky-diving when they could have been given the latest Transformer like their friends or running dance classes at the homeless hostel where I used to work.

Did it change them?

Honestly, I don’t know.

But they are now amazing young adults doing awesome, good things and have the courage to take up every opportunity that life offers… or that they create through their own hard work.

>  A daughter who is an adventure lifestyle blogger living in Canada, and who learnt to ride a motorbike to raise money to build a classroom and enable girls in South African to have an education.

>  A son who has travelled through India and New Zealand, now a qualified doctor, who’s completed Wolf Runs, climbed mountains with a broken collarbone, organised beach cleans and will try any new challenge at the drop of a hat.

>  A next son who spent 3 months exploring Australia, New Zealand and Thailand (and got lost for a couple of weeks – another story!) and will say that his phone camera breaking 2 weeks into a 3 month trip was the best thing to happen because he experienced everything rather than taking photos of everything!

>  A next daughter with an awesome values-system who gave her  birthday cake to the homeless centre and is now planning a one year international degree placement and will only work with an ethical business that aligns with her personal beliefs.

Sibling quote, ‘It’s taught us that life is more valuable when you share experiences.’

And what about me?

One of my favourite experiences was Mothering Sunday a couple of years ago when my kids took me paddle boarding on my favourite SUP lake because they knew it would make new, happy memories for me.

How lucky am I?

I’m grateful, on a daily basis, that somehow, someway, somewhere, I seemed to have got a few things right as a parent (heaven only knows how because I’m still waiting for the handbook to arrive from a well-known online shopping site!!).

I’m proud of the people they are growing into and how they contribute compassion, humanity and inspiration to their friends, their communities, and to me… we never stop learning do we?

I’m genuinely lucky to work in an environment that creates memories for people every day they turn up to take part in an adventure activity. Sometimes a little nervous, sometimes a little excited, sometimes a little reluctantly… but they leave with a big smile, heads held a little higher and a new ‘memory in the making’ (my kids will remember me saying this to them over and over!).

Never stop exploring because ‘We are the sum total of our experiences’. (Dr Thomas Gilovich)

Sallie Ryan

(Excited to be a Creator of Opportunities, Possibilities and Memories at Adventure Activities UK)… and yes, of course Gift Vouchers are available!



Staring out of the office window gazing at Afton and Tennyson Downs makes me think that it is not a bad life being an old outdoor instructor working on the Isle of Wight. Above the ground I can see a wide variety of birds ranging from buzzards to kestrels, and not forgetting the very pretty goldfinches.

I have spent most of my life living and working in the outdoors, and our island, the Isle of Wight, is up there with the best of them when it comes to stunning scenery, dramatic and varied landscape and  some of the best surf conditions in UK waters.

This time of year is a great time to get outside and enjoy our island and all the outdoor activities that are on offer. The crowds have gone and the 550 miles of footpaths, 70 miles of coastline are virtually devoid of people. The sea is at its warmest, and there is a lot of late autumnal sunshine around to entice everyone to get outdoors and enjoy the natural environment.

Everybody should access the outdoors – it’s free, on your doorstep and accessible 365 days a year. The Isle of Wight is highly accessible, regardless of age, interests or ability. Most of the beaches are now open for dog walkers and even a large number of the sea front parking meters are covered until February so parking couldn’t be easier!

The footpaths and bridleways are generally well maintained and brilliantly way marked allowing you to plan some excellent rambling routes as well as cycling, mountain biking and horse riding trips.    kayak-coaching  

If you prefer something more adventurous, then a wetsuit could be the way forwards to get out in some fantastic waves to surf, kayak, SUP surf or even some open swimming (sea conditions permitting of course!).

Across the island there are a number of clubs and groups that bring like-minded people together to enjoy outdoor activities if you prefer to live life beyond the living room. As with Adventure Activities, you can also book to explore new environments through guided tours or activities with an instructor-led session.

The benefits of being outdoors and taking part in any type of activity are huge and well documented, even scientifically proven. Being active and connected to natural environments improves your mental, physical and emotional well-being, gets you fit and blows away the cobwebs in a way that TV never does… and it’s a whole load of fun too!

So what are you waiting for?

Get on your walking boots and big bobble hat, or wetsuit and buoyancy aid, and just DO IT!

Oh, and there are also a large number of excellent warm and friendly pubs, hotels and cafes to retire to after your adventures in the outdoors!


Archie McGhie (Senior Instructor, Exponent of the Great Outdoors and 1st time blogger)   

Book your Adventure here >>>   

#livelifewithmoreadventure   #getoutdoors   #winteriswaiting


Day Trip Kayaking on the Isle of Wight. Kayaks are the best way to properly explore the stunning Isle of Wight coastline. You will be visiting coves, beaches, caves and if you are lucky with the weather getting out to the Needles!
Our full days are based on the highest quality touring sit on top kayaks available, Ocean Kayak Scupper Pros; We’ll be taking lunch with us and stopping to play between the rocks and go snorkeling in some stunning locations.