Whether you’re visiting or on a “Staycation” the UK has some incredible destinations. From rugged landscapes to bustling cities and quiet villages, there’s always something new to discover or rediscover. Have you visited any of these popular tourist locations recently?
Here’s a selection of the top 10 destinations to visit in the UK.
1. London – the UK’s buzzing capital
The vibrant UK capital is filled with entertainment. From the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace, the historic sights of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament to a bird’s eye view of the city on the London Eye. To keep the kids busy in London you can introduce them to their favourite celebrities at Madame Tussauds waxworks, tour the city in an open-topped bus or take them to see the Natural History Museum’s dinosaurs. And for a spot of shopping with friends why not try the trendy Camden Market?
2. Salisbury Plain – wide open spaces
It’s impossible not to be entranced by the magical stone circle of Stonehenge or the mysterious giant white horse carved into the hillside, which legend says awakes to drink from the nearby springs at night. Salisbury Plain lies 1½ hours from London by car and once you get there you’ll find some beautiful walking routes.
3. Bath – rich history and contemporary culture
Less than an hour’s drive from Salisbury is the historic city of Bath. Home to the famous Roman Baths, thermal springs to bathe in, the impressive architecture of the Royal Crescent and the filming of the show Bridgerton, Bath mixes culture with contemporary. Trendy brasseries and unique shops line the streets – perfect for a girls’ day.
4. The Isle of Wight – for beautiful beaches and amazing scenery
If you’re looking for a romantic getaway or a family holiday the Isle of Wight will impress. It’s easy to take your hire car by ferry to this pretty south coast island. You’ll discover miles of sandy beaches, water sports, outdoor activities and plenty of attractions for the kids. Explore the island, view the famous Needles, have fun at the magical world of Blackgang Chine or wander along the stunning clifftops.
5. Cornwall – the home of cream teas and surfing
At the southern point of the UK, Cornwall offers a variety of attractions to keep everyone busy. You can walk across to St Michael’s Mount (check tide times!) visit the iconic Eden Project or take the kids surfing on one of the vast beaches. Complete the day with a traditional Cornish clotted cream tea. And don´t forget to sample a homemade Cornish pasty!
6. The Cotswolds – quaint and charming
Situated in the centre of the UK, the Cotswolds are a splendid spot for couples or friends to take a leisurely walk followed by a traditional English pub lunch. Cosy up by the fire in winter or enjoy the arrival of spring with a glass of something in the garden. Famous for their picture-postcard cottages constructed of local Cotswold stone, this area offers some of the prettiest villages in the UK.
7. Snowdonia – the rugged wonder of Wales
If you enjoy scenery, whether as a passenger or driver, the 3½ drive from the Cotswolds to Snowdonia in North Wales takes you through stunning countryside. With its vast mountainous landscape, towered over by Mount Snowden, Snowdonia is great for hikers. And for the less adventurous or younger members of the family, you can take a trip up the mountain by rail.
8. York – a beautiful mediaeval city
If you’re in search of true heritage, then head east from Snowdonia to the walled city of York. A 3-hour drive will take you to this fascinating city with Roman and Viking roots. You’ll find a host of attractions to satisfy everyone’s historical hunger, from the imposing stone cathedral to York Castle Museum and the Jorvik Viking Centre. And if history isn’t your thing don´t worry – Mum can go shopping in Parliament Street, Shambles Market or the Coppergate Shopping Centre (better all 3 we think!), and then onto York Designer outlet for some fantastic bargains.
9. The Lake District – breath-taking scenery
Next stop is the stunning national park of the Lake District. Home to miles of rolling hills, glassy lakes, and the famous Scafell Pike mountain, the Lake District is 2 hours from York by car. If you’re looking for a gentle walk with the kids or a more challenging hike the Lake District is full of trails and spots to stop for lunch.
10. Edinburgh – Scotland’s magnificent capital
Make your way to Scotland from the Lakes, and in 3 hours you’ll be experiencing the staggering beauty of this city. Impressive Edinburgh Castle sits above the narrow cobbled streets of the Royal Mile. The kids will love Edinburgh Zoo, a scary trip to the Blair Street Underground Vaults and the Edinburgh Dungeon. Are you looking for somewhere special to eat out with your partner? You’ll find a fine selection of restaurants in Edinburgh Old Town on the Royal Mile – give the haggis, neeps and tatties a try!