In association with Southeastern, our friends over at Escapism are serving up a must-read guide dubbed 'Hidden Gems of the South East'. From action and adventure activities right through to spots of natural beauty, via history, culture, family fun, and food and drink - it's a showcase for the 75 best kept secrets that this corner of England has to offer. #SEhiddengems 

Trends can be difficult to keep up with, can't they? What's hot? What's not? What's cool? What's lukewarm? At times, life can feel like an endlessly looped Steve Buscemi meme. "How do you do, fellow kids" and all that. One trending word however, that came onto the outdoors scene a few years back and has definitely stuck about, is 'microadventure'. 

Alastair Humphreys, the man who brought the term kicking and screaming into the mainstream, defines a 'microadventure' as being "an adventure that is short, simple, local, cheap – yet still fun, exciting, challenging, refreshing and rewarding." 

In an age where it feels like people are increasingly busy with work, and other responsibilities, 'microadventures' can be a great way to get away from it all and do something you wouldn't normally do. With this in idyllic concept mind, a few of our London-based team hopped on a Southeastern train to New Hythe and set about enjoying the hidden gem that is Leybourne Lakes. A paradise in Kent (aka the 'Garden of England') for anyone who loves water sports. 

Renting some kayaks, because nobody should want to haul that kind of equipment about on a train, we splashed about and generally had a really nice time before switching it up and getting on the SUP boards. We fell off a few times but with the summer heat as high as it was, it turned out to be the perfect cooling down solution. 

Worth mentioning at this point that, although we didn't get the chance to try them out on the day, Leybourne Lakes other activities include open water swimming, scuba diving, and wind surfing. Anyway, here's hoping our little day out on the waters of Kent has inspired you to get out of the city and make the most of this glorious weather we're having. Go and enjoy those hidden gems. 

Do It Yourself

We got the train from London to New Hythe. Leybourne Lakes, where we rented our equipment, is just over a 5 minutes walk away from the station.

This summer Southeastern are running an offer where customers can buy Off-Peak Day Return train tickets from London to 13 selected destinations for a fixed price of £15, £20 or £25. The offer runs until the 24th of August 2018.

For a full list of terms and conditions, visit southeasternrailway.co.uk/summer