Sports and the Outdoors


Sports and the Outdoors

VisitBritain and local Tourist Information Centres can recommend places to enjoy your favorite sport.


The national body promoting cycle touring is the Cyclists' Touring Club (£39 a year). Members get free advice and route information and a magazine. Transport for London publishes maps of recommended routes across the capital and British Cycling has online route maps of the United Kingdom. The CTC organizes cycling vacations.


British Cycling (0161/274–2000.

Cyclists' Touring Club (0844/736–8450.


Boating—whether on bucolic rivers or industrial canals—can be a leisurely way to explore the English landscape. For boat-rental operators along Britain's several hundred miles of historic canals and waterways, from the Norfolk Broads to the Lake District, contact the Association of Pleasure Craft Operators or Waterway Holidays. The Canal and River Trust has maps and other information. Waterway Holidays arranges boat accommodations from traditional narrow boats to wide-beam canal boats, motorboats, and sailboats.


Association of Pleasure Craft Operators (01784/223603.

Canal and River Trust (0303/040–4040.

Waterways Holidays (01252/796400.


Invented in Scotland, golf is a beloved pastime all over England. Some courses take advantage of spectacular natural settings, from the ocean to mountain backdrops. Most courses are reserved for club members and adhere to strict rules of protocol and dress. However, many famous courses can be used by visiting golfers reserving well in advance. In addition, numerous public courses are open to anyone, though advance reservations are advised. Package tours with companies such as Golf International and Owenoak International Golf Travel allow you into exclusive clubs. For further information on courses, fees, and locations, try the website English Golf Courses.


English Golf Courses (0141/353–2222.

Golf International (212/986–9176 or 800/833–1389.

Owenoak International Golf Travel (203/854–9000 or 800/426–4498.


Walking and hiking, from the slowest ramble to a challenging mountainside climb, are enormously popular in England. National Trails, funded by Natural England and the Countryside Counsel for Wales, has great resources online. The Ramblers, a well-known charitable organization promoting walking and care of footpaths, has helpful information, including a list of B&Bs close to selected long-distance footpaths. Some of the best maps for walking are the Explorer Maps, published by the Ordnance Survey; check out


National Trails (

The Ramblers (0207/339–8500.

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