It’s finally really real! The Wild Times was an idea I had a few years ago now. A dream of combining all the things I love the most: being outside, doing yoga, being on the water and hanging out with other humans who like to do the same. Around 18 months ago I started to properly work towards making it a reality, and 2021 was a huge year of growth, hard work and Wild Times.
2021 – what's happened so far
In 2021 there were 9 completely sold out Wild Times retreats across the UK, in the Lake District, Somerset, Cornwall and on the Isle of Wight. 158 people joined for yoga, paddle boarding, wild swimming in the sea, lakes, and icy waterfalls, countless marshmallows around the campfire and many afternoon teas.
We have collaborated with lots of incredible fellow nature-fans and people I'm now so happy to call friends, including Syd the Tree Climber, Laz the Plant Scientist, Jake the photographer, Abi the Aromatherapist, Beth the Free Range Chef, Harriet Emily the sound healer, Georgie 1 the nature meditation fan, Georgie 2 the breath work expert, Jane the reiki master/sound healer and the magical Mindful Chefette Kate.
We've also planted over a thousand trees with Tree Sisters. We now even have merch; Wild Times tote bags and limited edition enamel adventure mugs. (Getting branded tote bags was a real business highlight!) The shiny new website went live just before Christmas, and 2022 spaces are over half full already.
The Real Life Club: Connection to your body, others and nature
It’s been so lovely to connect with so many people over the last year. We have had lots of walks, hugs, tears, laughter, chats over dinner, hot drinks on the seashore and countless postcards written with messages of love. Particularly, it has been about connection. Connecting to our own bodies, connecting to other people and to nature. This, really is what The Wild Times is all about: creating a safe, lovely, fun space where real-life connection can happen. We all need it now especially, after the last two years of increasing isolation from each other despite the faux hyper-connection technology provides. Less screen time and more sun time.
The concept of “re-wilding” continues to grow, along with forest bathing, cold-water swimming and many other outdoorsy trends. In my opinion, this can only be a good thing. The more we realise that we are nature and acknowledge our innate need to spend more time truly immersed within it, for our mental, physical and spiritual health – the better.
As Jacque Cousteau said “people protect what they love”. The greater our connection to the earth, the greater our need to protect and restore it.
Hopes for 2022
There are currently 10 retreats planned for 2022, with some of our favourite destinations from last year and a few new special ones too, including the New Forest, a new Lake District venue and a beautiful meadow overlooking the sea in Devon. I am hoping to work with an amazing charity in London that takes kids out on adventures, as well as partnering with some really cool companies, organisations and creating some bespoke retreats (for you and your friends perhaps?).
I hope to continue to grow the Wild Times sustainably, facilitating more real-life connections, planting trees and protecting the sea, and helping people properly rest, get outside and out of their comfort zones.
See you in the wild…
Love Jen x