Top 5: The UK’s Finest StaycationsBy Angelica Malin
Whether you’re on a budget or just looking for a holiday a little closer to home, there are plenty of reasons to leave your passport at home this summer. The UK is often overlooked in favour of exotic and distant destinations – but with such a wealth of natural beauty and things to see and do right on our doorstep, why not opt for a Great British staycation in 2016?
Today, we’re bringing you a diverse selection of 5 inspiring staycation destinations. From a relaxing escape on Northumberland’s picture-perfect coastline to exploring the bustling and vibrant city streets of Manchester – here’s your dose of vacation inspiration:
For a Scenic Break: Northumberland
The northern coastal county of Northumberland is famed for its award-winning sandy beaches. With dramatic backdrops like Bamburgh Castle (pictured) in abundance, it’s the ideal destination for a relaxing UK break. Book a holiday cottage in Bamburgh and spend your days walking the coast, or take a trip out to the Farne Islands to see the local wildlife from the nearby harbour town of Seahouses. No trip to the region is complete without a visit to the vibrant market town of Alnwick. Home to the world-famous Alnwick Garden and Alnwick Castle (better known as the home of Hogwarts), visitors can tour the castle and its grounds until their heart’s content – making this the perfect family day out.
Image courtesy of VisitEngland/VisitNorthumberland
For a City Break: Liverpool
Liverpool is much more than the birthplace of the Beatles. Having undergone significant regeneration in recent years, the iconic Merseyside city has been reborn as a thriving cosmopolitan metropolis. With nightlife and shopping opportunities galore, it’s a popular destination for a weekend city break. While its proud party-city atmosphere appeals to many, there are plenty of other reasons to visit. With the biggest collection of galleries and museums outside of London, it’s got a rich art scene and a visit to the Tate Gallery on the Albert Dock is a must.
Image courtesy of VisitEngland/Thomas Heaton
For a Seaside Break: St. Ives
Britain’s quintessential seaside town, St. Ives is the jewel in Cornwall’s crown. From its historic fishing harbour and sandy beach to its cobbled streets and colourful shops and cafés, St. Ives has the full package when it comes to the British seaside experience – all you need is a bucket and spade! If you get bored of the endless sun, sea and sand, why not try your hand at coasteering? Led by qualified lifeguards, coasteering combines rock climbing, sea swimming and caving in one action-packed activity – making for an exhilarating way to explore Cornwall’s coastline.
Image courtesy of VisitEngland/Visit Cornwall/Adam Gibbard
For a Vibrant Break: Manchester
Once the industrial powerhouse of the north, Manchester has been transformed in recent years to a rich and vibrant cultural hub – and despite having a smaller population than Birmingham, it’s often dubbed the UK’s unofficial second city. Its fascinating mix of stunning, historic industrial architecture and contrasting modern developments has resulted in a rather attractive city centre – home to some of the best shopping and dining opportunities the UK has to offer. No trip to the city is complete without paying a visit to the Northern Quarter; once the home of Manchester’s textile industry, it’s evolved into the city’s buzzing creative district, full of independent clothing designers, restaurants and bars.
Image Courtesy of VisitEngland/Marketing Manchester
For a Get Up and Go Break: Fort William
An adventurer’s playground in the heart of the Scottish Highlands, Fort William sits in the shadow of the mighty Ben Nevis on the shores of Loch Linnhe – and its diverse geography makes it an ideal staycation destination for an active holiday. With mountain biking, hiking, climbing, sailing, skiing, rafting and kayaking all on offer, Fort William offers the ultimate opportunity to try something new and get your adrenaline pumping – so why not try camping for the most authentic outdoors experience? For stunning views over the Loch and beyond, make sure you try the Nevis Range Mountain Experience – taking the gondola up to the 2150 ft marker on the north face of Aonach Mor.