You know if our, Kirkstone Lodge was any close to the epic, Loch Insh Water Sports and Outdoor Activity Centre that we would practically be in the water….. ok so slight exaggeration on my part, but this place is amazing and I am sure it is the kind of place where all families will have a truly wonderful day or even weekend and likewise a bunch of immature, alcohol fuelled adults could do exactly the same. Well for this week’s blog post I am going to share with you what my favourite activities here are and not only were these things my family loved, but I am sure you will have an absolute blast doing them as well.
To start with, Loch Insh offer different categories of activities, they have land, water, snow and I am sure in a decade to two we can add outer space to that list as well. But for now we will just focus on the ones that they actually have and have a wee look at least one activity from each category.
To start with I have an activity that I feel everyone can have a go of and that is archery. They let kids as young as 6 do this, but on their site they say that they must be able to ride unaided…….. what this means I have no clue, but trust me as awesome as it sounds there is no riding quad bikes or horses while you are shooting arrows. All the equipment is provided from the bows, arrows to the protectors for your arm. Which by the way let me advise you to actually use. Years ago I partook in an afternoon of archery and a friend told me the arm guards were not necessary……. Well I can tell you they are! Anyway this is a lot of laughs and even little kids will be able to pick up the basics very quickly and have a great time. You can have a fun wee competition or just do it for fun pretending to be Hawkeye or Green Arrow.
If you have read my other blog posts then let me apologise for my juvenile sense of humour and weird use of punctuation in some cases, but you will also have noticed that my family loves to go mountain biking. Well they offer mountain biking here and there are a number of great wee trails that you can go on. None of them were too extreme so it is fine for younger riders which is nice. While we have all our own gear, my other half would actually say we have too much, but I assure you one day all the extra parts in the garage will come in handy! For those of you who do not have anything and I mean literally anything, you can borrow everything you need from the fine folks here.
In The Water
The first time my eldest went kayaking he kind of freaked out, but now it is something he loves to do so we make the most of it whenever a place has it on offer. They offer Kayaking here and I must say they do it very well. I think that kayaking here is something you must do if you have never tried it before. First of all they have all the equipment that you could need, but they cater for newbies in a way that I have not seen before. They actually have a separate part of the loch for people to learn how to kayak. I am sure some people may spend the whole session in here and have an amazing time in the process, but they will allow you once you are feeling more confident to get out on the loch and go a little wild, ok so maybe not wild, but you can then have a bit more freedom when you have all that water in front of you. This is a lot of fun and while it may be a bit tame if you are a hard core kayaker used to fast water and fighting off alligators with your oars, for those just wanting to give it a wee try, honestly I think this is something you must do while here. Just be sure to bring a change of clothes (including undies….. people always forget the undies) in case you get soaked.
They really do make learning to windsurf a very fun, relaxing and dare I say even an easy experience. Now I am not saying that after five minutes you will be a world champion wind surfer, but I can tell you this is far easier to learn than I thought and I am sure you think that it would be. The staff here are fantastic and they use the very latest equipment and make sure things are not only safe, but also always fun. If you have never done this before then you will want to book their windsurfing tuition which does last about an hour. I also recommend that you then hire out some equipment after this so you can have some fun with your newly learned skills. While the tuition is a lot of fun, it does leave you wanting more so be sure to get straight back out on the water and show off your new moves!
On The Snow
You know Scotland really does not get the credit it deserves when it comes to awesome winter sports. Ok so I know this is the “on the snow” category, but this is actually a dry slope I am mainly talking about here so even if we are not blessed with a nice thick, blanket of snow, you can still have fun here. It is a 60 meter dry slope and actually I think for beginners it is a great way to get a taste of what skiing has to offer. There is more advanced skiing of course, but for just wee bit of fun with the family I am sure this is something that you will like. I have no doubt more than a few people will have caught the skiing bug and become addicted after giving this dry slope a try.
It may just be my kids, but snowboarding is apparently way cooler than skiing! Given the choice ,my boys would pick snowboarding each and every time and truth be told I do enjoy it more than skiing. While I do like skiing, I personal feel that snowboarding is a bit more action packed if that makes any sense. Anyway before you try your luck flying down the cairngorm mountain, you can snowboard here on their dry slope, yep that someone we just talked about. Snowboarding I feel is trickier to get the hang of than skiing, but they do have some excellent tuition here and plenty of equipment for you to borrow. This is something the kids will love as it does kind of feel like you are in a video game, well to tell the truth that is something which I love about it as well!