Go coastal

Coasteering: You may look like a knob doing this thanks to the wetsuit, life jacket and helmet combo, but then so will everyone else. Plus you can regain your kudos when you jump off a scarily high cliff face into the dark (and bloody cold) waters below. It’s a great way to discover the nooks and crannies of Scotland’s craggy coastline around Oban, as well as get your adrenalin fix as you scramble, swim and jump your way along. £35 for a half-day trip  


Diving: This is not the first country to spring to mind when you want to go scuba diving. However, although you won’t find anything tropical in the water around Berwickshire, you will find sunken ships and boats, and cliff walls teeming with marine life. Plus you can spot dolphins and basking sharks as well as seals huddled on the rocks. £37 for a day trip, plus equipment hire cost if needed  


Snow business

Skiing & boarding: From around December to April, the Scottish Highlands are ripe for snow sports. The highest and most popular resort is Cairngorm Mountain. With 30km of runs – the longest is 3.3km – there is also a freestyle park for those looking to perfect their skills. £32.50 day pass, £23.25 ski or board hire  

Ice climbing: Make your way up walls of ice with the aid of axes and crampons. You can practice all year round at Ice Factor’s indoor 50ft ice wall, near Fort William, or join them for a winter climbing course in the mountains. £48 for 2.5 hours on the ice wall; from £42pp (group of 6) for a one-day climbing course to £200pp (group of 6) for a five-day course.   

Up the river

River buggering: Most easily described as white water rafting but in the ‘comfort’ of your own inflatable armchair; your oars are replaced with webbed gloves, so you can steer yourself by dipping your hands in the water. It’s as fun as it is ridiculous. Available in Pitlochry and Aberfeldy. £60  



Bikerafting: The Cairngorms’ rivers and lakes need not be an obstacle when cross-country biking. Simply unfurl your backpack-style packraft – a lightweight inflatable boat with collapsible oars – dismantle your bike, tie it to the bow of your craft and paddle your way across. Genius, no? £245 for a two-day bike raft course  


On dry land

Off-roading: The closest we get to off-roading in London is when our Boris bike splashes through a puddle. In Scotland, the land is ripe for tearing around in a 4×4 – and there’s nothing like revving yourself out of a mud hole or careering down a steep bank. Far x Four have a purpose-built off-road course in Hawick where you can take a spin in one of their vehicles. £130 for two hours’ tuition  


Zip-lining: View the country’s stunning scenery from up high – although it might be a bit of a blur as you whiz your way down 1km-worth of wires. Taking you over forests and gorges in the beautiful Aviemore, it may be a quick look, but it’s simply breathtaking (quite literally if you’re scared of heights). £25  


Mix it up

If you want to do a whole host of activities, there are a number of companies that offer package trips. Try the four-day £399 ‘Great Glen’ trip with Haggis Adventures for hiking, biking, canoeing and kayaking (on Loch Ness no less).  

For climbing, abseiling, biking and archery try the five-day Boots and Paddles activity week (activities only).  

Wilderness Scotland will have you kayaking, orienteering and learning about bushcraft in the ‘Treasure Highlands’ six-day trip for £775.  


Getting there Catch the Caledonian Sleeper train from London Euston to Scotland with Scotrail from £127.60 return when booked before 6pm the day before travel.   



Aviemore Bunkhouse Pretty much every activity you can do in Scotland you can do in Cairngorms National Park, and this bunkhouse is located at its mouth. From £19pppn. 

Raasay House This grand B&B is on Raasay Island, near the Isle of Skye, and offers kayaking, coasteering, and abseiling. From £45pppn. 

Craggan Outdoors This Cairngorms company offers pony trekking, high ropes, shooting, quad biking and more. It has on-site accommodation, from bunkhouses to a cottage and a bothy. Cottage from £340pw. 

Fingal of Caledonia Take a three-night Great Glen cruise, stopping to canoe, cycle and hike. From £425pp.  


Photos: Thinkstock; Facebook