Planning travel to a new destination is not always easy, as there is such a wide variety of tourist attractions to choose from. Time is often limited and this means that you should plan ahead, to make the most of your time, money and holiday. It usually helps to have some guidance from a local or from someone who has already been there. Not everyone wants to visit the tourist attractions, instead, they prefer to enjoy the culture of the local scenes. If visiting the UK is on your bucketlist, then you may enjoy this Guest Post by John Stuart, who is a contributor at barbless-flies.co.uk . John has very enthusiastically put together a list for us, of things to do and places to see in the UK.
Let me now hand over to John…
The UK is a country that attracts millions of visitors every year considering its many attractions and popular cities such as London, Manchester, Birmingham, and Liverpool, to name a few. With a diverse landscape, architecture, cultural places, castles, beaches, wherever you go in the UK you’ll not be disappointed.
It’s hard to choose among the places you can see since there are so many, but how about a life-changing travel experience? Most tourists have a checklist of the most important sights that they cannot miss when going to a new destination and sometimes they forget to feel the beat and vibe of those places. Instead of the most popular attractions, here are some uniquely British experiences that everyone should have in a lifetime.
1. Gaze at the stars in the Isle of Man
With many dark night sky spots, the Isle of Man is a perfect place to spend at least a night looking for astronomical sights, such as the Milky Way Galaxy or Orion Nebula. You just need a telescope or binoculars. Don’t worry if you don’t have equipment as you’ll be able to spot them even with the naked eye only if the sky is crystal clear. If you are lucky enough you can also spot the Northern Lights on the North-eastern coast of the Isle of Man, which are normally seen in Alaska, Iceland or Norway.
2. Go fishing in the Port of Whitby
This historic fishing port attracts numerous visitors the whole year. If you are a foodie, then this is the perfect place to have the famous British fish and chips, either in its many cafe and restaurants or directly on the beach. For the more adventurous, a fishing boat trip is a perfect choice. You will have a fun experience, especially if you enjoy fishing. Just make sure you pack your fishing equipment and flies or use the gear that the organizers provide.
3. Go skiing at Cairngorms National Park
Do you fancy an arctic adventure in the UK? Then the Cairngorm Mountain is the perfect spot where you can ski and snowboard well into the spring. There are small quiet resorts where you can stay at affordable prices and without the crowd that you find in the Alps.
4. Walk and cycle in the Lake District
If you want to enjoy nature’s beauty to its fullest, you should explore the region of Lake District, the UK’s most popular national park. Besides lake cruises and mountain walks, you can ride the bike across the valleys and woodlands down country lanes. The picturesque views will definitely take your breath away.
5. Take the train from Fort William to Mallaig
Once in the UK, you’d most probably want to rent a car if you want to explore different parts of the country. Even so, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity of going by train on this route from Fort William to Mallaig as you’ll see some spectacular Scottish scenery. The train goes through the countryside, but the most famous part of the journey is the Glenfinnan Viaduct, which appeared in the Harry Potter movies. The train makes a stop here so that passengers can take photos.
6. Climb Arthur’s seat in Edinburgh
Sounds like you are about to see the king’s throne? Actually, Arthur’s seat is an extinct volcano in Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland and one of the most beautiful cities in the UK. You can experience a fabulous hiking in the heart of the city, but make sure you have proper footwear. At 251 above the sea level, Arthur’s seat offers excellent views in all directions.
7. Cycle on Alderney
Alderney is one of the UK’s top island holiday destinations. With over 50 miles of tracks and pathways, it offers a great cycling holiday opportunity. It’s a little island to explore, so if you are in a good physical condition, nothing can stop you to enjoy the traffic-free cycle routes. There are also cycling tours that are organized for tourists.
8. Visit a Royal Palace
A holiday in the UK cannot be complete without visiting a royal palace. If you go to London, you’ll definitely want to see the most popular one, the Buckingham Palace, which attracts millions of visitors every year. However, there are other beautiful royal residences where there are fewer crowds, such as Kensington Palace, the London residence of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Historic parts of the building are open to the public and you can even see Lady’s Diana Fashion Story exhibition.
9. Visit the Roman Baths
A site of historic interest located in the city of Bath, the Roman Baths offer a unique experience not to be missed if you are interested in history. The complex is one of the best-preserved ancient Roman spas in the world built on three natural hot springs. Besides the Baths, there is also a museum and other associated exhibits. You should avoid weekends and the months of August and July, which are the most crowded.
10. Explore Cotswolds
The villages of Cotswolds, located in South West England are some of the most beautiful in the entire UK. If you want to feel the real British countryside vibe, then here is the place. Imagine the green valleys, limestone cottages, cozy pubs and narrow streets and you have the perfect view of the picturesque market little towns. For a complete experience head to one of the country pubs to meet the friendly locals. Try the Plough Inn or the Star Inn for traditional home-made food and great views.
The UK has a lot to offer and since you travel such a long distance, you should take enough time to explore as much as possible. However, enjoy every moment and don’t rush from an attraction to another. The suggested places should offer you some time to relax or just sit in a cafe watching the people. Now it’s time to book a flight and plan your trip for 2018.
Have you been to the UK or live in the UK? If you have any tips for tourists, please feel free to comment below.