Geocaching In The UK: A Fun And Free Way To Explore The Outdoors
Geocaching is a worldwide treasure hunt that has gained a lot of popularity in recent years. Find out how to explore this exciting outdoor activity in the UK today.
What Is A Geocache?
Geocaching is a modern-day treasure hunt in which players use GPS coordinates to find hidden containers, also known as geocaches. These containers can be found in various locations, from urban areas to remote forests. Geocaching is a fun and interactive way to explore the outdoors and discover new places. To participate in geocaching, all you need is a smartphone with a geocaching app, a sense of adventure, and a willingness to explore. You can find out more about geocaching in our Geocaching: Everything You Need To Know blog.
How To Start Geocaching In The UK
Geocaching is a great way to discover new places, learn about history and culture, and connect with other enthusiasts. You can find geocaches in urban parks, rural trails, historical landmarks and even underwater. There are over 3 million active geocaches around the world, and more than 300,000 in the UK alone.
To start geocaching in the UK, you will need a GPS device or a smartphone with a geocaching app. The most popular app is the official Geocaching app by Groundspeak, which you can download for free from Google Play or Apple Store. The app allows you to access a map of nearby geocaches, view their details and hints, navigate to them using your phone's compass or map mode, and log your finds.
Alternatively, you can use other apps such as c:geo or Geooh GO for Android devices or Cachly or Looking4Cache for iOS devices. These apps have different features and interfaces that may suit your preferences better. You can also use a dedicated GPS device such as Garmin or Magellan if you prefer.
Once you have your device ready, you can create a free account on geocaching.com and start searching for geocaches near you. You can filter your search by location, difficulty level, size of cache and more. You can also browse lists of popular or recommended caches or create your own lists of favourites.
When you find a cache that interests you, tap on it to see its description page. Here you will find information such as:
- The name of the cache
- The coordinates of its location
- The difficulty rating (from 1 to 5 stars) based on how hard it is to find
- The terrain rating (from 1 to 5 stars) based on how challenging it is to reach
- The size of the cache (from micro to large) based on how big it is
- The type of cache (such as traditional, multi-cache or mystery) based on how it works
- The date when it was hidden
- The name of the owner who hid it
- A short description of what to expect
- A hint that may help you locate it (optional)
- A spoiler image that may show you what it looks like (optional)
- Logs from previous finders who share their stories and feedback.
You can also see how many favourite points the cache has received from other players who enjoyed it.
The Best Places For Geocaching In The UK
The UK has many amazing places for geocaching that offer scenic views, cultural attractions and historical sites. Geocaching highlights in the UK include:
This national park in Cumbria is home to stunning lakes, mountains, forests and wildlife. You can find over 5,000 geocaches here, ranging from easy walks to challenging hikes. Some of the most popular ones include Scafell Pike, England's highest mountain; Wastwater, England's deepest lake; and Aira Force, a spectacular waterfall.
This capital city of Scotland is rich in history, culture and architecture. You can find more than 2,000 geocaches here, covering landmarks such as Edinburgh Castle, the Royal Mile, Arthur's Seat and Calton Hill. Some of the most interesting geocache sites include The Real Mary King's Close, a hidden underground street; The World's End Murder Mystery Trail, a series of puzzles based on a true crime story; and The Royal Yacht Britannia, a former royal residence turned museum.
This metropolis is one of the most diverse and vibrant cities in the world. You can find over 10,000 geocaches here. Ones to watch include the 16th Century Pub, a virtual cache that takes you to one of London's oldest pubs; Father Thames & The Mermaid, a short multi-cache that requires a visit to two locations on the banks of the River Thames; and London Calling 2023, a mega-event cache that takes place on Saturday 29th April 2023 at St Mary's Church, Marylebone. It's set to be the largest geocaching event ever held in London.