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Kitesurfing, Southend

Speeding along through the sea with a board strapped to your feet and a kite flying above your head is a sure-fire way to immerse yourself in the outdoors in an exhilarating way. And you need only hop on a quick train to do it. Southend-on-Sea is popular with windsurfers and kitesurfers, and Southend Kitesurfing is the closest place to London that offers kitesurfing lessons. The school is located just metres from the beach, and you’ll get expert tuition from Steve Davison, who has 16 years’ experience teaching all over the world. Travel time: 54 minutes (train from Fenchurch Street to Southend) [Photo: Getty]

Best outdoor adventures less than an hour from London

Ellie Ross

You don’t have to venture too far from London to find an outdoor adventure. From open-water swimming to white water rafting, there are plenty of activities you can enjoy al fresco without travelling too far. We’ve found some of our favourites, including mountain biking, paragliding and wakeboarding, that you can have in the capital or within just an hour’s travel from it.