The Best Adventurers, Explorers and Communities who Inspire Adventurous Living
Do you ever dream of a life beyond nine to five but are uncertain what to do or where to start? You might consider taking a year off work to figure it out or try something new. Perhaps you're considering travelling independently or a more permanent change - a nomadic lifestyle? Your ideas may feel a little far fetched, but a few small adjustments to the way you live could lead to very big changes, lots of opportunities and new friends - and who knows...that new adventurous life you've been waiting for.
Where and how do I start?
I was in my late twenties. My friends were beginning to move away and start families. No one I knew had the slightest desire to travel or do anything adventurous so there was no one I could turn to for inspiration or support. I found the prospect of doing anything alone, utterly daunting and I felt restricted by all the things society told me I should be focusing on - settling down and achieving 'career' goals. What I needed was a community or a space where I could explore ideas and connect with inspiring, motivated, like-minded people. But those communities were all relatively new at the time, or inaccessible to those with little money.
But they're out there now! What these communities have shown me is that there are no barriers when it comes to living an adventurous lifestyle. Being a part of them has opened so many doors. Whether you're looking for a way to create your own path, make better connections, organise adventure with friends or family, or dreaming of your next big trip and in need of ideas, then you're in the right place! Here is a list of my favourite communities and adventure people that create events and spaces that will inspire you to follow your passions and get outside. So are you ready to go on an adventure?
Great! Let me introduce you to...
1. The Yes Tribe
In 2018 I was diagnosed with chronic migraine. I suffered months of debilitating symptoms which triggered anxiety and early stages of depression. When I discovered that nothing but time could cure me, I started to look at my life holistically. What was missing? I took time to rest, meditate, practise gratitude and embrace what I had. I spent more time outdoors and searched online for communities I could connect with and reach out to for support. A year before the illness I heard an inspirational talk from adventurer, Dave Cornthwaite. Dave is the founder of The Yes Tribe, a group that brings people together in the outdoors to find adventure in the everyday. I joined the group on Facebook and found people like me. People who had come from a difficult place, who wanted to redesign their lives for the better and #SayYesMore. What surprised me was that this was not just an online community. The group created countless opportunities to meet in the outdoors and make real connections (for free, I hasten to add). Not only did I meet like-minded people but I made new friends. I never thought of adventure as being so accessible.
Favourite things about The Yes Tribe
I attended the group's storytelling events, where people shared their life-changing experiences. Travelling families with children, solo female travellers, people with disabilities, expedition leaders, couples – ordinary people from all walks of life, leading extraordinary lives.
Regular Yes Stories events take place upstairs at a central London pub, and the events are filmed so you can watch them live on Facebook. Yes Stories has grown in popularity and Tribe Members have hosted numerous events throughout the UK.
Tribe Days at The Yes Bus
The Yes Bus is a countryside base camp in West Sussex where people come to heal their ‘sizzled’ minds, learn new skills and hatch fresh ideas. Tribe Days are free (donations welcome) and camping the night before on-site, encouraged.
Other events that take place at The Bus include workshops, skill sessions and co-working days, retreats, outdoorsy weekends and summer camps. The bus is also available to hire for any groups who share the Tribe’s ethos of using community, adventure and optimism to lead positive change.
There’s a fire pit and cooking facilities, a library and beanbags on the bus. What more could you possibly want!
Yestival is a weekend of talks, workshops, inspirational lectures, discussions and campfires at night. It’s a celebration of ideas with an emphasis on discovery and inspiration, designed to set you on a new path and recharge and ignite seeds of positivity.
Wake Up Wild
A great initiative launched in 2019 to celebrate The Yes Tribe’s 4th birthday, encouraging 2019 people to spend a night under the stars. With wild camps hosted all over the country, the aim was to get people outdoors and raise £6000 for Tree Aid.
This is so cool! Say Yes More founder Dave Cornthwaite has made a habit of travelling long distances without motors and has quite the collection of interesting rides. He invites anyone who has a great adventure or cause to choose one of his vehicles and have an adventure of their own. Click here for more info.
The Tribe are dotted all over the world with HQs in London and West Sussex. Join the Yes Tribe group on Facebook, where you can search for events and details of regional and global tribes near you.
Most events and gatherings are completely free or donation only. The whole tribe ethos is about making adventures and the sharing of ideas accessible to everyone. It’s such a down to earth and lovely community.
2. Bex Band & Love Her Wild - Women's Adventure Community
Blogger, speaker, conservationist and adventurer, Bex Band has been recognised as one of the UK’s ‘top 30 inspirational entrepreneurs’ and has been awarded Legacy Maker on the San Miguel alternative rich list. She was also awarded the Next Generation Award and shortlisted for a National Diversity Award. Noticing a real lack of women in the outdoors, she launched Love Her Wild – a women’s adventure community, now with over 6,500 members.
Love Her Wild connects women locally (in the UK) and organises expeditions all over the world.
If I ever need advice or inspiration about travel planning, conservation and sustainability, or anything adventure related, Bex is my go-to person. I do reference Bex a lot in my blogs. I just find her such an inspiration, particularly with her conservation work.
The Love Her Wild community is a also a great source of inspiration for female adventurers.
Here are a few Love Her Wild expeditions you can get involved in:
Wild Lakes of Snowdonia
Plastic Island Sailing Expedition in Scotland
Hebridean Backpacking Adventure
Whale Shark Expedition in Mafia Island, including data collection to support research, beach cleans, workshops and yoga.
Desert Elephants of Namibia
Love Her Wild Weekend North
Love Her Wild Weekend South
3. Explorers Connect
A Bristol-based not-for-profit organisation, dedicated to helping people live more adventurously. They offer micro-expeditions, treks, courses, talks, and an industry jobs board. I found most of their activities came at a cost but they're a great option if you have some spare cash and want to take adventuring to the next level. You can book onto adventure courses or test your survival skills on tailor-made expeditions.
Here is a list of my favourite adventurers. Completely relatable, approachable, lovely and inspirational people.
1. Dave Cornthwaite
YES MAN, Dave Cornthwaite is the founder of The Yes Tribe and an all-round ultimate adventurer, writer, motivational speaker and community leader. Dave aims to raise over £1 Million for good causes through a series of epic expeditions, collectively known as #Expedition1000.
Dave’s mission is to undertake 25 journeys using different forms of non-motorised transport. Each journey is a minimum of 1000 miles long, meaning when completed Dave will have travelled further than the circumference of the earth around the Equator.
2. Bex Band
Her adventures include hiking 1000 km the length of Israel, kayaking the width of the UK against plastic pollution and kick-scooting the length of the USA. Legend!
Learn all about her expeditions here: https://www.theordinaryadventurer.com/
3. Alastair Humphreys
Alastair Humphreys is an English adventurer, author and motivational speaker.
Over four years, Alastair cycled 46,000 miles around the world and was declared National Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 2012. He is responsible for the rise of the idea of The Microadventure – short, local, accessible adventures. My husband recently signed up to his newsletter and has become so engaged with the content. Alastair has a way of drip-feeding little nuggets of wisdom and ideas that will get you outside and living adventurously in no time.
4. Anna McNuff
Anna McNuff is just a ray of bloody sunshine!
A self-proclaimed 'mischief-maker', adventurer, motivational speaker, influencer and best-selling author all rolled into one. Named by Condé Nast Traveller as one of the 50 most influential travellers of our time, and by The Guardian as one of the top modern female adventurers, Anna is also UK Ambassador for Girl Guiding, and the co-founder of Adventure Queens; the UK’s fastest-growing women’s adventure community.
In her latest challenge, Anna ran 2,352 miles (the distance of 90 marathons) through Britain – completely barefoot.
5. Tim Moss
Adventure, mountaineering and cycling enthusiast Tim Moss is someone I came across quite recently when searching for mini-adventure inspiration.
I like big adventures but I'm not someone who wants to do them full time as they can be quite tiring. Even Indiana Jones went back to his teaching job. So it's reassuring to find adventurers who encourage accessible, everyday adventuring. One of Tim's stand-out challenges is his £100 Adventure, a week-long hitch-hiking adventure on a £100 budget Tim offers free expedition resources via his website; The Next Challenge and an annual expedition grant. Check out his adventure portfolio here and get inspired!
The world is never short of adventures or amazing people that inspire.
Happy adventure making x