Come rain or shine, summer or winter, the great outdoors is the place to be. The benefits of fresh air are huge and a spot of exercise increases the metabolism and puts you in a good mood. This year, try something new with one of these five epic activities to do outdoors.

Spot the Local Wildlife
Appreciating the local plants and animals are a great way to ensure ecological projects that maintain places like national parks keep running. Watching animals is a rewarding experience. In many parks you are likely to see deer, so read up on these beautiful animals on a Deer Information Website

You may have seen your local woodlands or marshes by daytime, but have you ever been at night? There are plenty of local wildlife clubs that organize nighttime excursions to see nocturnal creatures that you just won't see during the day, such as owls, foxes, and badgers. Contact your local club to find out when to go and where the best spots are. 

Hit The Rivers
There are many ways to enjoy the water, whether that be a lake, river or the ocean. From paddling to boating to fishing, for a gentle trip down a river, find a canoe or kayaking company that will organize boats for you and recommend the safest spots to row. If you have your own boats, then check out these kayak friendly roof racks for the safest methods of transport. 

Be sure to pack a hat or some sunscreen, and even strong swimmers are advised to wear a life jacket, but on a calm day, you can unwind as the river takes you downstream and enjoy the beauty of the outdoors from a different perspective. 

Take to the Skies
Paragliding and parasailing are epic pastimes that let you see the world from above like a bird. If you have never traveled via glider before then find a reputable company to take you tandem through the skies. This is the perfect way to release your inhibitions and let go whilst catching a breeze, feeling your heart flutter with adrenaline and enjoy a beautiful view of the planet.

For the even more adventurous, there is skydiving where you leap out of a plane and descend with a parachute. Just remember that these activities can be weather dependent, so book in advance but with a certain amount of flexibility to avoid disappointment. If the wind is too strong, or there is no breeze, then most companies won’t take you out. 

Sleep in the Wilderness
Really immerse yourself in nature and a simpler life with a camping trip. If you are heading to national parks then make sure you have the correct permits ahead of time. This is the perfect place to light a fire and learn the constellations, listen to the sounds of nature and take some time to read a book or just talk. 

If you are prepared enough and relatively fit, then pack your tent in a backpack and use it as an excuse to go on a long hike. Stopping halfway through a hike is the perfect excuse to walk somewhere that is otherwise too far to go in one day. Use this camping checklist as a basis for packing everything that you need for your trip away. 

Hug The Coast
Coasteering combines all the best of outdoor adventure activities as you skirt along rocky coastlines using rock climbing skills, diving from rocks into the sea and swimming. Experience the ocean like never before as you travel along coastlines you may never have seen and plunge into the ocean in thrilling leaps. 

There are usually companies with trained leaders who will take you along the coastline and guide you along the safest routes along rocky cliff faces. This adventurous activity is best completed with friends and is an unusual way to explore gullies, caves, and waves.

So, what are you waiting for? The planet is beautiful and vast and there is so much left to explore. Use these five activities as inspiration for how to make the most of the Earth and all its delights. How are you going to use this year to try something new?