As most of the office flocks to the airport seeking sun, sea and sand, here on the Hotcourses editorial desk we are preparing for a Great British summer. With a heatwave forecast in the next few weeks and London recently hitting highs of 26⁰C (hotter than Malta and Rio de Janerio) there has never been a better time to not get away. We believe there is more to a summer in the UK than playing Monopoly inside while watching the rain, and want to change the perception of the stay at home holiday. So take a look at our top ten reasons to grab your flip flops and go back to school (no homework or exams involved we promise) with our favourite seasonal suggestions.
1. A great summer bake off
It wouldn’t be summer without an English barbeque and whether it’s chicken or a veggie burger on your plate, learning how to make your own delicious bread is a must. Learn to twist, mould, plait and fold your way to the perfect loaf on a short course and be ready to wow your friends at every occasion. Or why not try your own British bake off and get the whole family involved?
2. Hit the waves
Who says you need to be abroad to find the waves? Whether its surfing or sailing that takes your fancy, there are plenty of options off the coasts of our own shores. What’s more, there are massive pros when it comes to water sports in the UK, the mild air and water temperatures as well as regular swells creating ideal waves.
3. An English affair
Nothing is more quintessentially English than Wimbledon. Each year tennis fever takes over the nation and we all patriotically believe that this will be our year (Tim Henman could still win right?). The strawberries and cream, the sunshine, the Pimms and the heart stopping match point are all parts of a summer at home. Although the action might be over till next year, why not get inspired and take up a tennis course?
4. The gentleman’s game
There’s nothing like a spot of cricket on a summer’s afternoon – us Brits love the gentleman’s game and are actually rather good at it, winning the ashes 103 times. Thousands flock to stadiums to wait for the leather ball to hit the bat, met by screams of ‘Howzat’ and a ripple of polite applause (World Cup fans take note). If you fancy donning your whites and having a go for yourself, a cricket course is a great way to pick up the tricks of the trade.
5. Saddle up
Be inspired by Royal Ascot and learn to ride this summer; whether its dressage, show jumping or cross country, life is never boring when you are flying along in the saddle. If you are a complete beginner or just a little rusty, the summer is the best time to get going, with the entire forest and the show jumping arenas open for the season. What’s more, even the greenest horse is a little calmer in the heat, so sit back and enjoy the ride.
6. One long party
With more festivals, carnivals and theatre productions than you can possibly cram into one summer there really is something for everyone. Glastonbury, the Edinburgh Fringe, the Notting Hill carnival – the list is endless, but one thing is always the same – that enthused feeling the weekend leaves behind. This year why not imitate your idols and get creative with a course? With singing, dancing and acting options on offer we’ve got the festival covered.
7. Endless summer evenings
When we asked the Hotcourses team to tell us their favourite parts of going on holiday, the summer evenings watching the sun set with a glass of wine were a resounding answer. Although we cannot control the weather, one way to bring this experience to a location nearer home is a wine tasting course, introducing you to foreign tastes from the vast world of wine.
8. Cook yourself thin
Summer is a great time to experiment with healthy cooking and to get the beach body you have always dreamed of. Learn how to eat more, yet lose weight with a course and enjoy a jam packed summer with good food and alternatives to your unhealthy treats (like frozen yoghurt instead of the entire tub of ice cream).
9. Bring the weather indoors
Wander round Ikea and get lost in the beautiful summer colour pallets this weekend. Although we would never suggest working when the sun is shining, use the unpredictable English showers to take a course in home improvements and bring the sunny days indoors.
10. Get online
No we’re not talking facebook and twitter. With the long summer evenings ahead, logging on to an online course is an easy way to learn a skill without missing the sunshine. A great way to learn in your own time, you could boost your career with a new skill or pick up a new hobby. Whatever you study, we are sure you won’t regret this in September!
Don’t forget, entering our Cash for a Course competition means you could be in with a chance to win £200 towards the summer course of your choice. Whatever you choose to get up to, relax and enjoy the Great British summer!
Jane McGuire received her BA (English) from the University of Loughborough. A yoga enthusiast with a sweet tooth, in her spare time you will probably find Jane in the gym or online shopping.