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Experiencing nature

Verschraenkte Haende

Experiencing nature

Giving all people free access to nature has been a key concern for Naturefriends ever since their foundation more than 120 years ago. To this day, the Naturefriends greeting "Berg frei!" reminds us of the successful fight for path allowance and free access to the mountains.

Even today, being able to experience nature is not a given for many people. Near-nature recreational areas are becoming rarer in our metropolitan areas and in many rural regions, attractive natural areas have become scarce due to intensive agriculture. At the same time, our lifestyle is characterised by physical inactivity and the speed of our everyday life leads to psychological strain. 

Health research of the last decades provided ample evidence that outdoor nature experiences contribute greatly to human well-being in all aspects. Consequently, the prerequisite for physical and mental well-being is a "healthy" natural environment which does not only offer clean water and fresh air, but also space for relaxation and physical activity.

Naturefriends offer a wide range of outdoor activities, from easy hikes to challenging mountain tours or canoeing. In all those activities, a key aspect is responsible behaviour in order to preserve our environment's diversity and beauty for future generations. Therefore, raising awareness for the environment and nature and informing about the needs of native species of flora and fauna is an important part of our work, too.