When this is not feasible, another option (and a source of inspiration) is to go along to one of the various adventure lecture events that run monthly or sporadically through the year.
If you've never been to one, I'd urge you to go along. Almost always the speakers are fascinating and the company good. Below are a few that I know well. Perhaps if you are aware of others you can add them below in the comments section.
EXPLORERS CONNECT - Founded by Belinda Kirk in Bristol, EC seeks to connect the adventure community and facilitate expeditions for everyone. As well as running an active website advertising jobs and opportunities for adventure, they run monthly networking evenings in a variety of cities (including London and Bristol) with a guest speaker each time. Well worth attending. Check the website for dates, venues and details.
TALES OF ADVENTURE - This London based monthly event was started by ocean rower Chris Martin a couple of years ago, and usually features two speakers plus a live call to someone out on expedition in the wilds of the world. A nice venue and great calibre of speakers. Details on the website.
NIGHT OF ADVENTURE - These are more sporadic, only happening once or twice a year, but they are absolutely worth putting in your diary. Alastair Humphreys first started these events to raise money for Hope and Homes for Children, and they've now expanded to sell out venues like the Leicester Square Odeon. The unusual format features ten speakers, who each have 20 slides of 20 seconds in length. The pictures scroll automatically, keeping everyone on their toes. There are three events coming up in London, Edinburgh and Manchester - details and dates here.
WILDERNESS LECTURES - A winter series of lectures based in Bristol covering adventure of all sorts, from all around the world. Everything kicks off in September, details here.
MONDAY NIGHT LECTURES AT THE RGS - The Royal Geographical Society has long run a lecture series on Monday evenings featuring renowned speakers talking on a variety of topics from all over the world (ranging from conservation to exploration to ecology...and so on.) Members and Fellows attend for free, while the public pays a small fee. Details on the website
What have I missed out? My knowledge is very limited to London and Bristol, so please fill in the gaps...