Back To Nature

Whilst relaxation to some people means sipping champagne and going for another spa treatment, and to others it means lying on a beach for a fortnight, only expending effort on turning over and applying suntan lotion, there is another set of people for whom doing nothing would not be in the least relaxing. For many people, getting back to nature is one of the best ways of relaxing, and what could be better than heading to a National Park, beautiful swathes of land set aside because it’s so nice to be there, just crying out for a visit.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, Wales

Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Wales

by jaybergesen

This is the only national park in the UK that gained this dedicated status for the beauty of its coastline, so you know you’ll be in for a treat here. The park hugs the coast in south Wales and offers wild hills, dense forest, secluded beaches and even a couple of islands. Whilst walking along the coastal paths look out for the rock stacks that the area is known for, and marvel at the ever-changing landscape.

Mercantour National Park, France


by Conor Lawless

Right on the border with Italy in the foothills of the southern Alps lies this beautiful park. Here you will find hundreds of miles of footpaths covering the hills and valleys. This lovely location is also dotted with small villages where you’ll no doubt want to stop for a lovely bite to eat. At the foot of Mount Bego you can also see the ‘Valley of Marvels’ where around 37000 bronze age drawings are found, but you’ll need to be into climbing to get to many of them. A gentler way to enjoy them is at the Museum of Marvels in the nearby village.

Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia

Lagos de Plitvice

by pululante

Croatia is growing ever more popular with tourists from the UK, but whilst the old cities are much touted, the numerous national parks are being left behind. This park is the largest in the country and is famed amongst those in the know for its cascading lakes that come in a variety of beautiful colours. You’ll really feel like you’ve returned to nature here, with a rugged landscape and even the possibility of spotting a brown bear!

Garden of the Gods, Colorado, USA

Garden of the Gods

by snowpeak

This park boasts amazing rock formations that are perennially popular with climbers but you don’t have to risk life and limb to enjoy yourself here. Cycling and hiking are great ways to get around here with fresh air in your lungs and amazing vistas everywhere you look. The park is best known for the Balancing Rock and the Kissing Camels so keep your eye out for them! You can get to know the place at the Visitors Centre or see what it was like in the past at the Rock Ledge Ranch Historic Site.

top image by PhillipC