Wild Kingdom

When a study this past spring revealed that the British are significantly healthier than Americans, we went looking for the wellness benefits of warm beer. But it turns out there are plenty of more wholesome buzzes in the UK.

    Photo: Illustration by Jonathan Carlson

United Kingdom

Rock-Climb in England: The Lake District has the finest gritstone crags in Europe; especiallyworthy are the routes at the Roaches and Hen Cloud. There are also endless problems to be solved on the massive granite boulders at Dove Crag. www.frcc.co.uk, www.lakesbouldering.co.uk

Mountain-Bike in Wales: Prince Charles's hood is the promised land for fat-tire fanatics. Coed y Brenin's 60-mile network of singletrack overlooks mountainous Snowdonia. Try the brand-new, technical 15-mile trail at Gwydyr Forest. www.mbwales.com

Hike Scotland's Munros: Rising 3,000 feet and higher, the 284 Munros offer hikes along rocky ridgelines that tower over surrounding lochs. On 4,406-foot Ben Nevis, the highest peak in the UK, you'll encounter the added thrill of unpredictable weather. walking.visitscotland.com/munros

Sea-Kayak the Outer Hebrides: The waters surrounding this 150-mile-long network of islands off the northwestern coast of Scotland are surprisingly blue and rich with whales, dolphins, seals, and puffins. You might even share one of the many vast and empty white-sand beaches with a rare white-tailed sea eagle. www.outdoorhebrides.com/sports/kayaking

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