We’re so lucky in Ireland, especially on the Wild Atlantic Way, our mild climate means that adventure and outdoor activities are available year round. Adventure Sligo challenge you to find a different spirit this festive season – a spirit of adventure. They promise great company, great fun, an exhilarating experience and absolutely no hangover! Vouchers for adventure activities make fantastic Christmas presents and could be the beginning of a new and exciting interest. Give the gift of memories this Christmas.

Here are a few ideas to whet your appetite:

Exploring ‘dem der hills’

You won’t find a goldmine but you will discover treasures when you join Northwest Adventure Tours on one of their December hikes. To celebrate World Mountain Day, join a guided hike to the highest point in our own province, the mighty Mweelrea Mountain (814m) on Sunday December 7th. Overlooking the glorious scenery of Killary Fjord, the views are really wonderful and the sense of achievement in reaching the top is priceless. It’s a tough climb, and you do need good boots and outdoor gear, but you’re in the hands of experts and this will be a day to remember. The hike is about 14km long and demands a reasonable level of fitness.

For the early risers, join Northwest Adventure Tours on Sunday the 15th December from 7.30am for a hike high into the mountains above the Glencar Valley to watch the sunrise and summit Kings Mountain. The tour includes coach transfers and post hike morning tea with snacks at the Riverside Hotel. You will be guided by torchlight to a viewing point to watch the sun rise while enjoying a well-deserved hot cuppa.  Next is Kings Mountain to take in views over Sligo town and all along the western coast.

For an easier but no less enjoyable post-Christmas hike, try the Christmas Benbulben Guided Hike on Saturday 28th of December. The 10km hike is easy paced and suitable for most abilities, it’s a great family day out or a perfect way to show off Sligo to visitors.  After reaching our summit, explore the famous face of the mountain and learn of its history before retiring to a secret cave where your guides will offer warm drink and some festive treats. It’s a 4 hour event starting at 10am.

Book these hikes by emailing northwestadventuretours@gmail.com.

Christmas Paddles

Now here’s a really great idea for a family or a group of friends over the festive season – a guided kayak tour on Lough Gill. No experience is necessary and all equipment is supplied. The Christmas Paddles start at 10.30 each morning from 26th to 31st December. All equipment is supplied as well as ‘nutrition’ … in the form of mulled wine and minced pies! Gift vouchers are also available. Book through www.sligokayaktours.com or phone 086 1999 015.

Winter Surf Experience

The Gulf Stream in the Atlantic Ocean means surfing is available all year round in Sligo and it’s not as cold as you think – honestly! Seamus McGoldrick at Sligo Surf Experience likes nothing better than introducing newcomers to the surfing or bodyboarding. Seamus is a professional Irish bodyboarder based on Strandhill Beach which has great waves for beginners.

Seamus and his expert team of qualified surf instructors teach you the basics of surfing or bodyboarding in a safe, structured and fun way. They have an excellent range of surfboards and bodyboards, as well as thick 5mm winter wetsuits and all the winter surfing equipment you will need. All you need to bring is your swimming gear, a towel and your spirit of adventure. Surfing starts at 12 noon every day. They have great group rates (2 hour sessions) so gather your gang and get yourselves surfing! Email info@sligosurfexperience.com to book.

See the surf from horseback

Island View Riding Stables in Grange have their string of well schooled horses and ponies on standby for anyone who gets cabin fever over Christmas. Horse riding is a wonderful activity for families and friends, it gets everyone out of the house – and even the die hards can’t look at their screens from the saddle!

Vouchers are available from €18 upwards and Island View is open until Christmas Eve and between Christmas and New Year. There’s nothing like cantering on a sandy beach to blow the cobwebs out of your hair.

All the members of Adventure Sligo have vouchers available, the perfect stocking filler and its always good to have something to look forward to in the New Year.

So what are you waiting for? Find your Christmas spirit of adventure and get out there with Adventure Sligo.