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Best Places to Staycation in the UK

Staycations are a wonderful way to enjoy a gorgeous, relaxing and entertaining vacation while never having to leave your home country.

They can minimize travel times, lower vacation costs and remove the language barriers associated with international travel.

Staycations are wonderful escapes for families, couples and friends that allow any group of people the opportunity to discover what their home country has to offer.

The best staycations in the UK consists of some must-visit destinations that provide entertainment opportunities to people of all ages and will allow you and your group of travelers to start enjoying some of the amazing natural wonders that the UK has to offer.

The Jurassic Coast, the Isles of Scilly, the Scottish Highlands,the Lake District, the Peak District and Devon are the perfect destinations to begin exploring the huge range of landscapes, natural beauty and entertainment on offer throughout the UK.

In all the regions discussed, there’s a range of accommodations on offer to cater to trips of all budgets and reasons, from, romantic couple's lodgings and hostels for backpackers, to luxurious hotels and spas. Each region hosts a range of unique scenery to be discovered, long history to be explored and quaint villages and towns to uncover on your own unique UK staycation.  

 

The Lake District

Skyline shot over lake and hilltops in Rydal Water, Ambleside, UK
Rydal Water, Ambleside, UK - in case you were wondering!

In 2017, the Lake District was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and after visiting the area it is clear to see why!

Hiking through the area is common due to the splendid natural lakes, woodlands, tarns, and mountains scattered throughout the region that provide breathtaking scenery and views.

This lovely landscape was the home of famous English author,Beatrix Potter, whose work was inspired by this gorgeous place she called home.

Beatrix Potter donated her home to the National Trust and Hill Top is now one of the most popular attractions to visit on any UK staycation.

The natural beauty of the region, along with the magnificent stargazing opportunities nighttime brings, makes it clear why it’s inspired artists, poets and writers in their work for centuries.

One of the most popular places visited in recent year across the whole of the UK, was Windemere, Cumbria. It boasts a stunning lake with the backdrop of mountains making the whole scene a living masterpiece!

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The District also hosts a range of gorgeous lake towns and villages including Bowness, Grasmere, Ambleside, and Coniston, that are a must-visit.

These towns and the many others in the district offer a buffet of delicious eateries and unique local shops and tours to enjoy your time in the area.

Cruises depart throughout the day from Windermere that take tourists across one of the many lakes in the Lake District and offer a unique perspective of the scenic surroundings.

Water sports are a common sight along the edges of town lakes and are a great way to keep active and creating lasting memories!    

Learn more about the Lake District, including the latest news, hidden secrets and so much more with the number one authority, the Lake District National Park official website.

The Jurassic Coast

Chesil Beach, Dorset, UK, designated an area of outstanding natural beauty
Chesil Beach, Dorset

Dorset is famous for its Jurassic Coastline and rich history that was discovered through the fossil record, with settlers calling it home since the first century AD.

Even before settling here, remains have been found traversing this coastline dating back even further and it’s a wonderful place to admire our human ancestry.

Durdle Door is a stunning example of the rock formations found in this county and represents this section of the English Channel nicely. It’s an impressive natural limestone arc that defies gravity, standing two hundred feet (61m) above sea level.

The whole coastline is filled with cliffs abundant with fossils and rock formations such as this that reveal tons of geological history.

The shoreline is full of gorgeous natural wonders to discover,including the beaches of Lyme Regis, where tourists can follow in the footsteps of Mary Anning and go fossil hunting along the beach.

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It’s a little unspoken gem that the UK has some of the best beaches!

Cruises between Swanage and Poole run through the year and offer a unique way to enjoy and appreciate this gorgeous and historic stretch of land. The castles scattered throughout the county are another wonderful way to appreciate and enjoy the ancient history found uniquely in Dorset County.

These castles range from ruins to restored beauties and offer the perfect opportunity to tour and learn more about the history of this region. Bike tours can be taken from any of the towns to explore the glorious nature this county has to offer, while scenic flight tours are a great way to get a birds-eye view of this rugged landscape. This county holds beautiful sights and natural wonders that are a must-visit on any UK staycation.

The Isles of Scilly

Stone art studio, Isles of Scilly, United Kingdom
Stone art studio

If you were wanting to head to the Caribbean but didn’t want the long uncomfortable travel time, the Isles of Scilly Archipelago is the perfect place to visit!

These idyllic islands consist of 140 landmasses found 28 miles(45km) off the coast of Cornwall, five of which are inhabited.

These islands are home to Tresco Abbey Garden, one of Britain's most outstanding attractions, that hosts a selection of gorgeous subtropical plants alongside the Valhalla Museum. At the north of Tresco, one of the inhabited islands stands the tower of Cromwell’s castle; a strikingly intimidating representation of the 17th-century architecture found on the island.

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The laidback lifestyle and feel of these islands will allow you to enjoy a restful UK staycation in some gorgeous natural gems.

At night, the sky comes alive with dazzling natural starlight that magically lights up the shoreline and provides the perfect pastime for those willing to look. The stark white sands flowing into the turquoise waters of the Atlantic Ocean are the perfect place to relax and enjoy all that island life has to offer.

Boat tours offer transport between the islands and a unique chance to spot the magnificent wildlife found throughout the archipelago,including sea birds, Puffins, and Atlantic Grey Seals.

The Scottish Highlands

Kilchurn Castle, Lochawe, Dalmally, Scotland, UK
Kilchurn Castle

The Scottish Highlands are one of the most remote locations found in the UK.

This wild, rugged landscape is the perfect place to explore both the rich history and impressive natural wonders of the UK. The largest national park in the UK, the Cairngorms, is found in this region and offers a huge variety of natural beauty including mountains, beaches and lochs to explore.

The Jacobite steam train runs through this area, more commonly recognized as the Hogwarts Express and is a beautifully scenic journey for people of all ages to enjoy. The train crosses the 21-arch Glenfinnan Viaduct,past Lock Katrine and the Falkirk Wheel, along with a range of other impressive sights and scenic areas that are a must-experience on any UK staycation.

Luxury boat tours circle the area and allow visitors to discover places such as Fort William, Loch Linnhe, and Oban, offering a unique way to view and experience this amazing, rugged landscape.

 

The Peak District

Skyline shot of Hope Valley, Peak District, UK
The beautiful Hope Valley!

The Peak District is the site of the UK’s first official National Park, established in 1951 and is home to some of the UK’s most dramatic landscapes.

The ancestral home of Lord and Lady Devonshire is available for visiting at the beautiful Chatsworth House. The estate is set among the idyllic mountain region and is a beautiful place to appreciate the history of the area.

The surrounding mountain region is divided into two main areas;the White Peak in the south and the Dark Peak in the North. The White Peak is characterized by the white limestone found in patches throughout the area,whereas the Dark Peak has a wilder and more desolate feel.

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The hills are located in Derbyshire, Staffordshire and continue northwards into the region. A short trip to the market town of Bakewell offers a range of cute local wares and the chance to taste one of their delicious Bakewell Pudding’s!

The hiking, cycling, and large range of outdoor sports that are available throughout the region offer adventure lovers a great way to entertain themselves and enjoy this impressively rugged landscape.

There’s a range of enjoyable outdoor activities on offer year-round, at one of the many local towns that allow the valleys, ridges,moorlands and hills of the region to be discovered and explored.

The Tissington Trail and the High Peak Trail both offer some majestic views and are great hiking trails that showcase the beauty to be discovered in this area.

Devon

Empty sandy beach in Exmouth, Devon
A glorious beach in Exmouth

The best UK staycation will always include a trip to the beach and the Devon Northern Coastline and Southern Coastline offer a beautiful opportunity to enjoy all the activities a beach could offer.

The Art Deco Hotel on Burgh Island is famous for its guests over the years, including The Beatles, Amy Johnson and Agatha Christie.

The impressive architecture and picturesque setting of the hotel are worth a visit, even when staying is not an option.

The south coast is home to a range of seaside trails, hidden coves and pristine beaches just waiting to be explored at any time of the year,while the water is deliciously inviting in the warmer summer months. This coastline offers the perfect place to relax and enjoy a day of exploring and fun in the sun on one of these idyllically beautiful beaches.

Heading over to the north coast offers a huge contrast to the calm waters of the south and is the perfect place to bring out your surfboard.

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The swell here offers a more adrenaline-packed holiday, with water sports available to entertain thrill-seekers of all ages.

The host of fishing villages lining this coastline, encourage the sport of fishing to locals and visitors alike and offers local eateries some of the freshest seafood to be enjoyed by all who dine in the area.

Driving between the northern and southern coastlines is a range of quaint villages, market towns, impressive landscapes and castle ruins waiting to be found, appreciated and explored.

The Dartmoor National Park offers a range of rugged landscapes to hike and unique wildlife to discover, if you need a break from the beach lifestyle.It offers plenty of opportunities to pull over and enjoy the journey between the two contrasting coastlines.

The Cotswolds

Lake overlooked by house, Cotswold, UK

The Cotswolds are located approximately two hours from London and are one of the most beautiful locations in the UK to explore.

Made up of an abundance of quaint, picturesque villages, this area is truly the quintessential English region.

There is an abundance of history found in the area and Warwick Castle is open to exploration year-round.

This magnificent piece of history makes for a delightful daytrip and is a must-visit when exploring the Cotswolds.

The final resting place of Katherine Parr, King Henry’s last wife, is found at Sudeley Castle and is another wonderful place to experience the history of this region firsthand.

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Many of the villages, including Bibury, Lower and Upper Slaughter, and Bourton-on-the-Water offer some amazingly unique scenery and a beautifully antiquated feel that can only be experienced in this section of the world.

The many villages offer a range of locations that are the perfect place to take a walk, a bicycle ride, or go shopping in one of the many quirky stalls on offer year-round.

The range of restaurants will satisfy the cravings of all visitors and a wide range of dining options is always on offer. The charming,brick-lined villages are a perfect romantic getaway, or offer a fun family staycation, with a range of activities on offer from each of the villages,wherever you choose to stay.  

There are many places on offer throughout the UK to make up the perfect UK staycation that will satisfy people of all ages and from all walks of life.

The Lake District, the Jurassic Coast, the Isles of Scilly, the Scottish Highlands, the Peak District and Devon are just the beginning of the wide range of landscapes and areas on offer around the UK that are waiting to be discovered.