Laying in the sun on a beautiful beach, hour after hour? What might sound like paradise to some people, to me is torture. Give me a surfboard, a pair of running shoes, a yoga mat and a bike and I will have the time of my life. This is why I never went on a classical package holiday, and I would probably bore my ass off, if I ever went. The advantage to my kind of traveling is that I never have to worry about getting out of shape during the holidays and I get to eat as much cake as I want. Sounds good? Here are my top 5 active holiday tips.

1) The bike excursion

Who needs a car when you ride a bike? The wind blowing in your hair, fantastic visual impressions, freedom to go wherever you want and some major health benefits are just some of the reasons why this is my preferred way of traveling. Still haven’t figured out where you’re going this summer? What about following Jaclyn’s path up the California coast, Ina’s way through the Alps or my route down the Portuguese coast? I can guarantee you a good time.

2) The surf holiday

There is a time to realize every dream, and my turn came last year. I always dreamed about learning how to surf, and during my time living in Portugal I finally went for it. Together with my amazing surfer friends, I had the best time surfing at Europe’s best surf spot Baleal and at the beaches close to Lisbon. The fun factor, beautiful beaches, great exercise and hot surfer dudes turn this sport into one of the best ways to spend time during your time off abroad.

3) going hiking

When I was a kid, the best thing about hiking was that I got to sleep in a tent and eat chocolate when it wasn’t even Saturday. Now, the best thing about it is enjoying spectacular nature, having long talks with my friends and getting a break from the city. Every year, I try to go hiking in the Norwegian mountains, but I’m equally intrigued by the idea of climbing a vulcano.

4) Active in the city

High-heel-a-thon by asterix611

Spending time in the city is no contradiction to being active. Maybe a High-heel-a-thon isn’t a normal part of your trip, but walking around in your heels for a day can feel like the greatest exercise of all. When I need an alternative to the normal sightseeing and shopping tour, I find going for a run or renting a city bike great ways of staying fit. If that’s not enough for you, what about doing some yoga in your room?

5) Extreme sports holiday

photo by Olga Kruglova

This is something high up on my to-do-list. Not counting my personal experience with sea rafting, snowboarding and surfing to this list, I have yet to go all the way with my adrenaline addiction. A paragliding, mountain climbing, river rafting will hopefully be my next challenge.

Happy active holidays girls!


Kathrine Opshaug Bakke Kathrine Opshaug Bakke, editor at Travelettes from 2009 to 2013, wrote this post. Originating from Norway, she has been living in Berlin, Lisbon, and Stockholm the past 6 years.

She loves cities with imperfect facades, photography, traveling by bike, vintage hunting, and everything that comes with cheese. Follow her visual diary at