With Spring well and truly underway and Summer just round the corner, what better time of year to take advantage of all the beautiful weekend getaway destinations that the UK has to offer.
Over the last few years, the appeal of staycation holidays has seen a huge rise. The pandemic made many people realise that they don’t need to travel far to visit desirable locations.
From the dramatic undulating landscape of the Lake District to the white sand beaches of Cornwall, here’s our list of The Best UK Weekend Getaway Destinations.
1) Scottish Hebrides
Every now and again we all need some time to go completely off the grid and there’s no better place to do this than the Scottish Hebrides. It may take you some time to get there, especially if you’re based in the south of England, but it’s certainly worth the trip.
Explore one of the many large underpopulated islands that are scattered along Scotland’s impressive coastline or enjoy long walks as you make your way through rivers, lochs, and mountains.
The Hebrides is also home to some of the country’s most spectacular wildlife including golden eagles, red deer, and even bright-beaked puffins.
Tucked away on the south-west coast, Cornwall boasts some of the country’s most idyllic beaches. Picture lush white sand and bright blue waters, made all the more appealing thanks to Cornwall having one of the warmest climates in the UK.
After you’ve finished checking out the beaches you can take time to visit one of Cornwall’s many attractions. From Tate St Ives, to St Michael’s Mount, to Land’s End and even to the climate inspiring Eden Project, Cornwall certainly won’t leave you looking for things to do.
Cornwall has also got some of the region’s best restaurants such as Rick Stein’s Padstow seafood spot, perfect for indulging in some of the finest locally caught fish.
3) Lake District
Being England’s largest national park, you certainly won’t be short of things to do on your weekend getaway to the Lake District. Famed for its towering fells and mighty lakes, the Lake District is home to England’s tallest mountain (Scafell Pike) and deepest lake (Wastwater). Whether you’re after the satisfaction that comes from bagging a Lakeland fell or the adrenaline rush that comes from watersports, The Lakes is the destination for you.
But don’t worry if the outdoors isn’t really your thing, The Lakes is home to many luxurious spa retreats in some surreal settings. Meaning you can kick back and unwind while still experiencing nature.
Find out more about some of the best Lakeland spas here.
Nestled in the heart of North Yorkshire, York is a mediaeval walled city originally founded by the Romans in 71 AD making it one of the oldest cities in the country. Wander round the many cobbled alleyways and admire the striking architecture on your way round.
No trip to York is complete without visiting the iconic Shambles street where you can enjoy a truly unique shipping experience. Take your pick from quirky old fashioned shops selling handmade products before pit stopping at a cosy independent tea room.
In contrast to its Roman and Viking Heritage, York is also home to some of the most cutting edge art galleries in the country as well as a vibrant annual Open Studios showcase.
Considered by many to be one of the most beautiful corners of Wales, the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is packed with wide stretches of beaches and quaint seaside villages. The 186-mile Pembrokeshire Coast Path hugs the coastline for almost the entire distance of the county, making for some idyllic coastal walks.
There are also plenty of sea activities available including: kayaking, sailing, windsurfing, and even boat trips to the island nature reserves of Ramsey and Skomer. Here you’ll be given the chance to spot whales, dolphins, puffins, and seals, perfect for the nature enthusiasts among us.
Famed for being Britain’s smallest city, St Davids is the perfect place to stay while visiting the Pembrokeshire Coast. The ‘village-sized-city’ is located right on the coastline and is full of picturesque restaurants and cafes.
Home to the charming city of Bath and bordering the indie city of Bristol, Somerset has a diverse landscape that includes countryside, international art spaces, and the site of one of the world’s most famous festivals, Glastonbury.
On top of this, Somerset is home to some of the most sought after places to stay in Britain. If you’re wanting the buzz of a city stay then head to The Royal Crescent Hotel in Bath which is set in a pair of Grade I-listed Georgian townhouses. Or, if you prefer the relaxation that comes with a village setting, head to one of the most talked about corners in Somerset, Bruton.
Perhaps one of the UK’s most underrated counties, Dorset is packed full of beautiful beaches and coves that wrap around its 95 mile long Jurassic Coast. This stretch of shore is also home to the famous natural landmarks, Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove. These really are a must see.
Hotels in Dorset include some beautifully situated country houses, not to mention boutique hotel options in Bournemouth and a stock of cosy yet contemporary B&Bs. Dorset also has a good offering of holiday cottages and self-catering options making Dorset one of the best UK weekend getaway destinations.
Norfolk is a county with a fantastic mix of things to do. The long North Norfolk Coast is perfect for short seaside breaks and has a great selection of seaside pubs with rooms and boutique hotels, while inland you’ll find the compact city of Norwich.
To the east, you’ll find the scenic network of rivers and lakes that make up the Norfolk Broads. This unique national park contains 125 miles of navigable, lock-free waterways (that’s more than Venice and Amsterdam combined) making it ideal for those wanting to explore the local pubs and windmills by boat.
Venture into the city centre of Norwich to wander around the mediaeval cobbled lanes and narrow alleys and be sure to check out the stunning Norwich cathedral.
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