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Top Tips for Planning Your Ideal UK Holiday
May 27th, 2020 | By: Matthew Williams
While it may be romantic to throw a few things into a suitcase, turn up at the airport and hop on the next flight to the UK, chances are you will have a far less stressful time if you plan ahead. That doesn’t mean you have to plan every last detail! The UK offers a huge variety of places to visit and things to do and by planning in advance you can ensure you don’t miss out. To save you some time, we have compiled our top tips to help you plan your ideal UK getaway. It will help you choose your destinations, find the perfect accommodation and give you tips on the best ways to explore.
St. Ives, Cornwall
Choosing a destination
The UK is a surprisingly large country with far more to offer the tourist than London alone. If you are looking for a city break, then there are some fantastic options! Head north to bohemian Manchester with its booming independent food industry, exciting live music scene and its contrast of handsome Victorian and strikingly modern architecture. Step back in time with a trip to York with the world-famous York Minster cathedral, wander the winding cobbled streets of the medieval Shambles and enjoy a cream tea at Betty’s Tearooms. Or head further north still and explore the Scottish capital. When planning a trip to Scotland, you will find that Edinburgh is packed full with evocative history and is home to the renowned annual Edinburgh Festival.
For a beach break head to Devon and Cornwall and discover some of the UK’s most beautiful coastline. You can try out surfing on Fistral Beach, Newquay, which is a magnet for surfers from around the world for its infamous big waves. Visit quaint St. Ives with its narrow-cobbled streets, working harbour and one of Europe’s prettiest beaches. Or check-out the English Riviera on Devon’s southern coast with its grand Victorian past and stunning sandy beaches. This region of the UK is a firm family favourite and there are some great attractions to keep the kids entertained! As well as beach activities there are theme parks, zoos, aquariums and historical attractions all within easy distance of each other on this narrow peninsula.
York Minster, York
For the outdoor adventurers the UK has 15 gorgeous national parks to discover with breath-taking scenery and a host of different ways to explore it. For mountain hikes head to Wales’s Brecon Beacons and take on the challenge of the highest peak, Pen-Y-Fan, for fantastic views down the mountain valleys. Visit the Lake District for scenes that have inspired writers and painters for centuries and appreciate the beauty of this newly declared World Heritage Site. Discover some of the UK’s rarest wildlife along the 200km of navigable waterways on the Norfolk Broads with its big skies and quaint windmills.
When considering which of these many options to choose it is helpful to think how long your trip is going to be and your transportation options. For example, if you plan to start your trip in London and want to visit the Lake District too, you will either need to take a 3 to 4 hour train and then buses or if you hire a car then it is a 5 to 6 hour drive. It is also worth considering where you are flying. If you fly into London and head up to Edinburgh during your trip, you might be able to fly back from Edinburgh, Glasgow or perhaps even Manchester. This will save you time in transit and give you more time to enjoy your trip!
Once you have decided where you are headed you can start thinking about where to stay. It is a good idea to think about how long you want to stay and how much time you plan to spend at your accommodation. If you only plan to sleep at your accommodation, it may not be worth splashing out on a something expensive. There are plenty of great value hotel chains across the UK, such as Travelodge and Premier Inn, that are perfect for those who plan to spend all day exploring! You can then save more money for the fun things during your trip. By booking in advance you can also make big savings, especially by using comparison websites, such as Booking.com. They can help you find the best deals and you can easily filter by what is important for you.
However, if you are looking for something a bit special where you can relax and spend time with friends and family, make sure to check out the properties at Boutique Retreats. Their unique self-catered properties include luxury cottages in Cornwall, picturesque farmhouses in Dorset and a great variety of historical and uber modern properties in unforgettable locations across the UK. You can easily find exactly what you are looking for with Boutique Retreats’ Collections, whether you are looking for a dog friendly paradise, a quirky holiday home with a pool or hot tub or a property with a sea view. Find your perfect home away from home, ideal for seaside and country retreats!
Cottage in Oxfordshire
Exploring like a local
If you want to get the most out of your visit then you need to make sure to make the most of local knowledge. One of the best ways to do this in the city is to take a walking tour. Local guides often know the city like the back of their hands and can tell fascinating stories that you will not read in your guide book. Walking tours offer you useful local insights with guides taking you on a one to three hour exploration of the city. Free tours are easy to access and usually cover all of a city’s main sights, however if you are more interested in the history or a specific aspect of a city it is worth investing in a paid tour. Tourist information centres can direct you and often provide their own guided tours. Make sure to check out reviews online and book in advance to avoid disappointment. In peak periods walking tours will fill up quickly. If a walking tour is not your thing then why not try a food tour, cycling tour or a boat tour? If you want to meet other people, a tour is a great option!
If you are planning to explore the countryside then there are plenty of different ways to discover the local scenery. Hiring a bike is a fantastic means to experience the countryside with many holiday destinations having dedicated cycle routes and traffic-free paths. In Cornwall for example, you can cycle all the way to Land’s End along cycle routes that will take you through quaint villages and seaside towns, as well as along Dartmoor. If you are looking for something a bit more adventurous, kayaking or coasteering are fun options to explore the coast with a local guide. You get a different perspective of the coastline and can access hidden coves and caves not accessible on foot! Horse riding tours are another way to get a different perspective on the local environment and are a fantastic way to get closer to nature.
For further UK travel tips, make sure to check out the rest of our blogs!
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