May is Naturally Healthy Month in Devon & Somerset, an initiative created to promote getting outdoors and connecting people and nature and celebrating the area’s natural environments, and Letting Nature Nurture, because getting outside and into the natural world is really important for our health. It’s run by Natural Devon and Naturally Somerset, with support from the county councils.
Here at Saltrock, we love getting outdoors and learning about nature and the environment, there's nothing better than putting on your Saltrock hoodies and heading out on an adventure, so we thought we’d put together a few ways in which you can take part in Naturally Healthy Month!
Cycling is a great way to get active and explore nature and your local environment, and there are plenty of cycling opportunities in Devon & Somerset! Cycle trails are perfect, because you can pick a distance depending on your ability, and whether you're heading out as a family, and there are plenty of places to stop at along the way.
Why not head down to the Tarka Trail in North Devon, and cycle from Braunton to Barnstaple, not forgetting to stop in our Saltrock stores on the way, or go even further towards Bideford or Great Torrington? There's also the Exe Estuary Trail, which takes you around the Exe Estuary, from Dawlish Warren to Exmouth. Find out more here.
If you're in Somerset the Strawberry Line is a great cycle trail - it takes you through Yatton, a small village near Bristol, and into a tunnel under the Mendips, and all the way to Cheddar Gorge, along a former railway line. It's a great way to explore the local area on a traffic-free route. More info can be found here.
If you're outside of Devon and Somerset but still want to get active during Naturally Healthy Month, take a look at Sustrans, a charity working hard to make it easier for people to get active via walking and cycling routes.
There are so many ways to get Naturally Healthy as a family, and 'Let Nature Nurture'. There are some great family events running for Naturally Healthy Month, such as a Family Day at Kilve Outdoor Education Centre on the 21st May 2017 – families can go and try out some taster sessions at the centre, whether it’s playing on the climbing wall and grass sledging, or circus skills, willow sculpting or sessions such as Storytelling and Lazer Tag!
Another great initiative in Somerset is Playing in the Park – a series of after-school family play sessions at Apex Park, Highbridge every Wednesday throughout May. It’s run by ZING Somerset, and it’s a great way to keep your kids active and embracing the outdoors.
If you're in Devon, why not head to Family Wildlife Fun? This is held at Dalton Gardens, Plymouth where you can join in in a variety of activities including building bird boxes, or on the Sunday head to Efford Nature Reserve.
There's also Fun in the Stream on 31st May at Honiton Bottom Nature Reserve, where you can join the Education Rangers and go stream dipping, raft building and dam creating.
If you're looking for more ways to get outside more and help your children learn more about nature, The Woodlands Trust runs a great scheme where you can enrol your kids as nature detectives and get inspired by their range of activities on their website – whether it’s identifying beetles, building a birds nest, or going on wildlife treks, it’s a great way to get your kids involved with nature and learning about where they live.
Walking is a great way to get outdoors, get active and to learn more about wildlife and the environment around you as part of Naturally Healthy Month. There are numerous walks around Devon & Somerset that take you through various different environments, whether you want to go on your own self-guided walk or would prefer a guide.
If you're looking for self-guided wildlife walks to immerse yourself in nature, the Devon and the Somerset Wildlife Trusts have a number of 'wild walks' of different distances, difficulties & through different areas, from woodlands and coastal paths to hills, wetlands and nature reserves. They are perfect for families who want to go at their own pace and explore their surroundings.
If you're looking for some guided walks, there are plenty on the Devon & Somerset Naturally Healthy Guides.
In Somerset, there are several guided walks throughout the month, such as the Coleridge Way Walk along the Quantock Hills on 13th May, or the Wonderful Woodlands Walk in Yeovil Country Park on 20th May.
In Devon you can take part in several guided walks too - whether its a Wildlife Walk around Meeth Quarry DWT Reserve on 20th May, a walk around Dunster discovering some of its hidden secrets on 17th May, a meadow walk with botanists on 27th May or several more.
If you're looking for more things to do, visit Explore Devon to discover lots of other places that you can be naturally healthy by getting active outdoors!