Start the new year with an active career outdoors

If you’re looking for a new career, why not consider working outdoors for a healthy and exciting change?

The stresses associated with working indoors at a desk all day are motivating many people to reconsider their careers and look to a type of tree-change for their job. Here are some options to consider, though some will require tertiary qualifications, whereas others are more suited to working at your hobby.

Surf or snow instructor

If you’re an active surfer, skier or snowboarder you can follow either the sun or the snow and work around the world as an instructor. You’ll have to get your instructor’s certification but once certified, you can live in either hemisphere, meet lots of people who are all out for a good time and hone your own skills, while doing something you really love.

Scuba diving instructor

Just like snow and surf sports, a dive instructor gets to work in some of the most beautiful places on earth. From the Great Barrier Reef to the Bahamas, there’s a demand for dive instructors in resort towns and many locations that are off the beaten track.

Fishing guide

Do you enjoy the quiet serenity of fly fishing for trout in mountain lakes and streams, or perhaps you prefer throwing a line from a boat in an estuary, or maybe the adrenaline-filled action of big game fishing? Then why not become a fishing guide? Share your inside knowledge with novices, while enjoying the chance at catching a world record or that elusive species you’ve always sought.

River guide

The improvement in the technology and safety of rafts, kayaks and canoes has seen a corresponding increase in recreational usage, as well as experiential holidays, like rafting the Grand Canyon in the US, or the Zambezi River in Africa. This has lead to a growth in demand for river guides who can safely lead individuals or groups on these adventures. As a guide, you get to live in the outdoors, spot wildlife and meet people from around the world.

Marine biologist

If you’re a Seinfeld fan, you’ll know the episode where George unsuccessfully claimed he was a marine biologist. You do need university qualifications, but you’ll be working in a field of vital importance to the future of mankind and the planet. There are a variety of roles existing in scientific research, zoos, marine parks, government departments, aquariums and more.

Park ranger

Every state or national park requires rangers to manage the park, including flora, fauna, trails, campsites, park entrances and information centres, tourists and sometimes poachers. You work outdoors and in all sorts of environments including bushland, desert, snow country, glaciers, mountains, lakes, coastal and marine parks.

Landscape architect

As the world goes greener, the requirement for more sustainable environments is paramount and one of the most important roles is that of the architect who designs the landscape. You’ll need to get a university qualification, but you can work on anything from residential homes to new suburb or business park design.


Every golf course, bowling green, grass tennis court and even croquet court needs a greenkeeper. You’ll require a qualification but you get to work outdoors and depending upon where you work, you might get to see some of the world’s best sports people ply their trade too.

Gardener or handyman

Many retirees and people in the twilight of their career, are turning to small businesses to keep themselves busy. Particularly popular are lawnmowing, gardening and handyman roles, with many businesses available as franchises. You don’t need any qualifications apart from a few tools, a vehicle and enthusiasm to enjoy your job.