In a recent blog post we discussed trends in open water swimming. One of those trends was the continuing growth in ‘swim tourism‘.
But swim tourism needn’t be an organised trip with boat support and meals and accomodation included; plenty of swimmers are choosing to enter races abroad and travel independently.
Maybe it is the seemingly never-ending British winter that makes an early season swim in sunnier climes so appealing. If you are prepared to travel, New Zealand and Australia offer plenty of possibilities: check out the State Ocean Swim series in New Zealand or the Cerberus Classic in Australia. Closer to home, southern Europe offers plenty of Spring swimming opportunities. The Oceanman is a series of four races in Spain and Italy, culminating in the Oceanman European Championship in Benidorm in August. But the first two races take place in April and May, giving northern Europeans the chance to get an early start to their swimming season.
Jo Chapman of the UK has signed up to the Oceanman Altea on 26 May: “I was attracted to Oceanman because it is early season – I have wintered really well this year and loved the idea of getting a high quality 5km under my belt before the domestic season really kicks in. The locations look stunning, organisers have been incredibly helpful and I can’t wait to get started!”
To date 25% of registrations to the Oceanman Altea and Palamós swims are from international swimmers and the events are already 60% sold out.
The proximity of Spain makes the swims an attractive proposition. “I am travelling out early on Saturday morning and back Monday afternoon,” says Chapman. “This is the beauty of this series – they are close enough to do in a weekend, limiting the impact on training, family and work.”
More information on the Oceanman series: http://oceanman-openwater.com/en/