Research from high street hiking supplies chain Blacks has put Plymouth into the top 5 of most active cities in the UK. Although the ranking does miss some key details (like, we do have a ski and snowboard centre), meaning Plymouth could have possibly ranked higher.

Just sayin…

The top 5 most active cities in the UK are:

  • Southampton
  • Norwich
  • Gloucester
  • Plymouth
  • Ipswich

Plymouth’s total of 21 parks put it at the top of the list for recreational urban spaces. The city also has more biking trails than any other city on the list, is top of the tree for water sports and ties for most sports complexes with Ipswich.

The list also misses off the dry ski slope at Marsh Mills.

Plymouth is second only to Southampton for ‘Total attractions and Activities’ with 47 to Southampton’s 49.

So although this list is sponsored by a high street retail chain, it does confirm what we already know. Plymouth is a great place to enjoy the great outdoors!

Check out the full list here:

Missing elements?

Another thing that the list also completely misses out is factors such as access to surfing beaches, paddle boarding hotspots, skate parks, kid’s activity centres, fishing trips and locations, wild swimming clubs, horse riding centres and outdoor lidos. Many of which are activities that Blacks doesn’t sell equipment for.

The rating though is based on the average number of activities available per 100,000 people. And Plymouth, with a higher population than any other city on this list (apart from lowly Bradford), is at a bit of a disadvantage there.

However with 18.06 attractions per 100,000 people, compared to Gloucester’s 18.66, Plymouth isn’t really a slouch in the active city list.

As we have seen more people taking up outdoor sports after the pandemic, this list does serve as a reminder that we live in one of the best areas to take advantage of this.

From roller blading on the Hoe, or wild swimming at Mount Batten beach; to paddle boarding at Firestone Bay or jogging around Saltram House. As we move into spring and summer, it’s the perfect time to get out and enjoy the exceptional surroundings of South Devon and beyond.

Even if we are only the 4th most active city in the UK 😉

Oh and here’s the full report from Blacks.