If you’ve found yourself cancelling trips abroad and are now looking for alternative travel plans closer to home, then exploring the UK might be an option for you.
The UK has something for everyone, from the lush greenery of Wales’ rolling hills to the glassy wells of the Lake District, plus bold and spirited cities where thousands flock for some of the world’s best sights, attractions, spa days and activities. There’s also plenty of history to explore and discover, including a wealth of famous faces, and of course the royal family and all the state splendour that comes with it.
It would be an impossible task to note down all that this country has to offer, so here’s a shortlist of four of the best places worth exploring when travelling closer to home and within the UK.
Although not a city, I have to start with a stunning alternative to UK cities for those who prefer the countryside. The lake district is England’s largest National Park, spanning over 885 square miles, and offering some of the most beautiful waters and mountainous scenery for visitors to tour. It’s the perfect place to escape, but it’s also easy to visit local towns or neighbouring cities if you’d like to mix things up.
You can experience the great outdoors and witness the breath-taking views by bike, on a leisurely ride through the thriving communities, or hike across the countryside and join a guided walk to really immerse yourself. Get lost in amongst the hills and enchanted woodlands of the Lake District, and take in some of the great British fresh air – it’s a great way to de-stress and slow down the pace of life.
Not too far from Cumbria, and still in the northwest of England is Liverpool: the maritime city that’s home to the famous Beatles. It’s a city full of creatives, art and music lovers alike. Float around the museums and galleries and get lost in the history, or walk along the world-famous waterfront and take in the iconic architecture and listed buildings.
With so much to explore in this port city, it’s no wonder The Times referred to it as one of the ‘coolest places to live’. There are so many areas of Liverpool that are popular with locals and tourists, and one place in particular is the Baltic Triangle. This hip, new space has not only seen the very best in restaurants and bars open, including The Peaky Blinders pub, but investors too have seen the potential of the city, and worked with companies such as RWinvest to form the latest Liverpool skyline.
Home to the striped deck chair and pebbled seafront, the lively and attractive Brighton is a wonderful place to spend a day out, or use as a base for a coastal holiday. Relax, have fun and indulge in some traditional seaside treats like fish and chips, seaside amusements and 99 ice creams. Or if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, you can pick up a surfboard and head out to sea for the day – just make sure you’ve got a wetsuit if you’re planning to brave the usually-chilly British waters!
If you’d prefer to stay on land, Brighton’s cobbled streets are great for exploring. The famous flea markets have plenty of hidden treasures and fabulous finds; if you’re into thrift shopping and vintage, this is definitely the place for you. When it comes to eating out, there’s a plethora of bars and restaurants available, catering for all tases and budgets.
London is a city unlike any other in the world. Famous for its art, historic buildings and landmarks, food and fashion, it’s constantly changing and offering new places to visit and attractions to encounter. If you’ve never been to the capital before, a walk along Westminster to visit Buckingham Palace is a must, and who knows, you might even get a glimpse of the Queen!
London isn’t all hustle and bustle. A boat ride is a lovely relaxing way to see the city. Or on a beautiful summers day, pack a picnic and stroll through Hyde park with the family. Covering 350 acres, it’s the largest park in central London and an excellent place for tourists to relax, bask in the sun and take in a bit of fresh air.
One of the top-rated ways to explore London and all that it has on offer is to take a ride on the London Eye, where you’ll witness the iconic skyline in every direction. You can even boost your experience with a glass of fizz and turn your sightseeing into a real treat.
Which cities are at the top of your list when exploring the UK?