How to Budget for UK Outdoor Adventures: Exploring Nature on a Budget

Explore the great outdoors on a budget in the UK with these budgeting tips.

May 25, 2023
How to Budget for UK Outdoor Adventures: Exploring Nature on a Budget hero
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Exploring the great outdoors in the United Kingdom can be an incredibly rewarding experience. From the rolling hills of the Lake District, to the rugged coastline of Cornwall, to the towering peaks of the Scottish Highlands, there are a myriad of beautiful locations to explore.

The United Kingdom is filled with stunning trails to explore and plenty of activities for those wanting to embrace the great outdoors. Unfortunately, outdoor adventures can often be expensive and can leave those on a budget feeling excluded.

But fear not! This article will provide some useful tips on exploring the UK’s outdoor destinations on a budget. With some careful budgeting, you too can experience the UK’s great outdoors without breaking the bank.

Research and Planning

Before packing your boots and taking off, take the time to plan out your budget. Begin by researching the cost of transportation, accommodation, and any special activities you may want to participate in. Knowing the approximate cost of the trip ahead of time can help you better prepare and make sure you don’t overspend.

Additionally, look into the details of the trails you plan to explore. Make sure to consider not just the distance but the difficulty of the terrain. You don’t want to get stuck in a tricky situation without the correct gear.

Minimize Transportation Costs

Booking flights and other forms of transportation can quickly eat up your budget. To keep the cost of travel in check, use alternative, more budget-friendly forms of transportation. If you plan on sticking around the UK, consider taking the bus or train to get around. If you’re heading across the sea, take a ferry or a budget airline.

If you’re planning on going on a longer hiking trip, consider asking a friend or family member if you could borrow a car for the journey. Not only will you save on transportation costs, but you’ll likely avoid the hassle of trying to fit everything you need in a single backpack.

Maximize Accommodation Costs

Accommodation can be one of the biggest expenses when travelling. To save on costs, consider staying in hostels or campsites. Hostels are a great budget alternative to hotels and are often located near trails. Additionally, most hostels are backpacker-friendly and offer a mix of dorm rooms as well as private rooms. Campsites, meanwhile, are usually the cheapest form of accommodation available and offer a chance to experience nature up close.

And if you’re willing to go off the beaten path, consider wild camping. While you don’t need to book accommodation, wild camping does require more gear than usual and may present its own set of challenges.

Prepare Your Meals

Another common expense while travelling is eating out. To keep costs down, consider packing some snacks and meals to bring along with you. You can stock up on food and other supplies at any grocery store or local market.

Additionally, some shops offer discounts for buying food in bulk or sourcing local produce. This is a great way to save money while exploring the local cuisine.

Utilize Local Resources

Local shops, tourist offices, and outdoor centers are great resources to help you plan your journey, and they provide a great way to save money.

First, check to see if you can rent gear at a discounted rate from a local shop or outdoor centre. This can be a great way to save on the costs of purchasing gear and hauling it around.

Second, many tourist offices offer discounts on local attractions. They can be a valuable resource when trying to budget for special activities and attractions.

Finally, many areas have started offering outdoor activities for free. Look into this option if you’re looking to further reduce your cost of exploring the UK outdoors.

Shop Smarter

Thankfully, there are a variety of ways to cut costs when purchasing gear for your outdoor adventure. To save on costs, opt for quality second-hand items from online auctions or second-hand shops. You can often find great deals on items that are still in good condition.

If you’d prefer to purchase new items, look into buying in bulk and buying from retailers that offer discounts for student, military, and outdoor clubs.

In addition, purchasing items online can often present cheaper options than buying at a local shop, especially when you add in the cost of shipping.


The great outdoors in the UK offers a wealth of stunning locations to explore. With some careful budgeting, you too can experience the beauty of the UK’s outdoors without breaking the bank.

To save on costs, start by researching and planning your journey. In addition, use alternative forms of transportation, such as buses and ferries. Maximize your accommodation costs by staying in hostels or campsites. Prepare your meals rather than eating out, and utilize local resources for discounts and free activities. Finally, shop smarter by looking into quality second-hand items, buying in bulk, and purchasing online.

By following the advice in this article, you’ll be sure to make the most of your outdoor adventure and save in the process. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and explore what the UK outdoors has to offer!

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