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British holidaymakers want to learn new skills more than sunbathe | Activity Holidays | Travel

Holidaymakers are swapping sunbeds and pool days for cookery and pottery classes – as a study reveals we now use foreign breaks to dive into new hobbies.

Research found the days of sunbathing on a beach or pool all week are being swapped for cooking and climbing courses as nearly half of Brits (45 per cent) have found new pursuits abroad.

With nearly three quarters (70 per cent) passionate about picking up new skills on a getaway, one in three (33 per cent) hail travelling the world as “one of the best ways to discover something new” according to holiday firm First Choice.

More than half (55 per cent) are eager to revive hobbies from their youth like painting, dance and martial arts – echoing the TikTok trend of adults sharing clips embracing childhood passions again under the hashtag “inner child healing”.

Dr Becky Spelman, Harley Street psychologist, said: “Changing your environment by going abroad effectively takes your mind off autopilot and wakes up the neurons in your brain.

“It makes you more receptive to learning a new skill when you’re away. Holiday hobbies are like taking something that’s good for you and then adding an extra health benefit to supercharge the experience.

“Engaging in creative activities, such as painting or cooking on holiday, can help lower cortisol levels, the body’s stress hormone.

“While stimulating activities, such as creative writing, learning an instrument, or a new language, can enhance memory and self-expression.”

The findings follow https://www.firstchoice.co.uk holiday’s newly relaunched booking platform where travellers can pick from close to 200 destinations in over 60 countries in addition to a range of experiences to spark new pastimes.

The survey of 2,000 adults reveals one in five (19 per cent) identify ‘eating, drinking, and socialising’ as their main hobbies.

This percentage rises to around a quarter among Millennials (27 per cent) and Gen Z (24 per cent) and while many Brits presently lack a hobby, over 8.6 million adults are keen to find one.

Hiking, Ghost Hunting and Crafting are among the Top 20 hobbies Brits want to embrace this year with tile making, cooking and astronomy also on the list.

The study found that Zoomers (Gen Z) are most likely to head off on hobby based holidays (65 per cent), followed by Millennials (55 per cent).

Boosting physical and mental wellbeing (36 per cent), improving knowledge (31 per cent), and forming new friendships (26 per cent) being key motivators for embracing new pursuits among those surveyed.

Previous studies show leisure interests have also been linked to lower depression levels among older people.

With a whopping 1.4 billion views of the #Hobbies hashtag on TikTok, 2024 is signalling a new era of self-discovery.

Dr Becky Spelman added: “Holidays where you have the chance to do something energetic or to stimulate yourself in a different way – like trying a new hobby – are proven to help boost your mental health, creativity and general wellbeing.

The top 20 hobbies Britons want to pursue in 2024 are: Cooking; Photography; Crafting; Art; Yoga; Hiking; Cycling;

Ghost hunting and the paranormal; Stargazing and astronomy; Pottery and ceramics; Motorsports; Extreme adrenaline sports; Foraging; Roller skating/blading; Climbing; Surfing; Paddle boarding; Trainspotting; Graffiti; Mosaics/tile making.

 


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