Welcome to Learn Orienteering

This website is intended for those new to orienteering or those looking to improve their skills. This website will provide the basic knowledge to help you get started in this exciting sport. If you have already tried orienteering and looking to get better, this website will also provide useful information on how to build your skills so that you can become more proficient in using your map and compass.

What is Orienteering?

Orienteering is an outdoor adventure activity involving navigation over unknown terrain, using a map and a compass. It can be enjoyed as a relaxing recreation, or as a challenging competitive sport. Local orienteering clubs put on regular events in parks, wilderness and even urban areas. At these events, you will find several orienteering courses designed to challenge anyone from recreational enthusiast to competitive orienteer. If you have a love of the outdoors and enjoy map reading, come give this exciting activity a try. All you need is a compass and a whistle.

The International Orienteering Federation (IOF) is the governing body of the sport and currently sanctions the following four official disciplines in the sport of orienteering:

Orienteering is suitable for all age groups. Known as the 'ageless sport' or 'sport for life', youngsters and adults of any age can easily start orienteering as a recreational or competitive activity. All you need is a basic level of fitness, an interest in navigation and a love of the outdoors.


Orienteering - A Great Family Activity for All Ages

This video by Northern Ireland Orienteering shows the many different age groups that can be involved in orienteering.



Orienteering - A Competitive International Activity

This video produced by the IOF shows orienteering as a competitive sport featuring both foot and ski orienteering.


Explore the next page to learn more about the basic components involved in orienteering.