A blissful tropical climate softened by Atlantic trade winds, pinkish-white, sugar-soft beaches, fabulous scuba diving, and laid-back catamaran cruises… These are just some of the fabulous experiences to be savoured in one of the Caribbean’s most popular and welcoming destinations - Barbados.
UK Summer Getaway Ideas
We have all the inspiration you could need for a last-minute summer staycation in our own fair isles. The following are some of our favourite regions and cities around the UK, whether you’re looking to escape with family, friends, the kids or solo.
From classic bucket-and-spade seaside resorts to uncrowded swathes of sandy beach, from mainly flat cycling paths to boat-trips to see seal colonies, this part of East Anglia – one the least-rainy areas of England – has something to please all ages and tastes. Nature is firmly to the fore – the Norfolk Broads National Park has fantastic nature reserves attached to it, while the county’s lovely coastal creeks are full of migrating seabirds. Among the historic buildings to admire here, don’t miss Holkham Hall & Estate in its parkland with a lake, nature trail and deer.
Where to Stay: Stay on a boat in the Norfolk Broads
West Coast of Scotland
Fairytale castles, mystical lochs, looming mountains, stunning islands, culture galore and fantastic seafood eateries make the west of Scotland – easily accessible from Glasgow – a must-visit. Among the highlights are the the 'bonnie banks' of Loch Lomond, Oban with its fish restaurants and ferries to Mull, Glen Coe with its glacier-carved valley, the island of Skye, and the iconic Eilean Donan Castle on its very own island at the place where three sea lochs meet.
Where to Stay: Experience the best of Scotland’s west coast on a West Highland Way walking tour
One of the most fetching settlements in Southeast England, this ancient hilltop Cinque Ports town has glorious views down over both the Rye Harbour Nature Reserve and Romney Marsh. Come for the cobblestoned streets linked with crooked half-timbered houses, the antique shops and independent bookstores, and the medieval inns and upmarket restaurants. It’s also great for walks, with Rye Harbour and the sensational sweep of Camber Sands each 40 minutes to an hour away on foot.
Where to Stay: The Gallivant, Rye
This beguiling blend of medieval university town and bustling contemporary city wows with its Gothic chapels, secluded cloisters, peaceful quadrangles, honey-coloured colleges, domed Radcliffe Camera and other architecture by none less than Sir Christopher Wren and Nicholas Hawksmoor. Top of anyone’s list should be the mighty Bodleian Library and the world-class Ashmolean Museum, but make time too to discover Oxford’s famous pubs with their literary associations, including the Lamb & Flag and the Eagle & Child, which regularly played host to CS Lewis and Tolkien.
Where to Stay: The Randolph Hotel
Cleaved in half by the River Esk, this delightful and compelling harbour town is best known for its clifftop ruined Gothic abbey, which inspired Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’, but it’s also home to the fascinating Captain Cook Memorial Museum, in the house where the explorer once lived. Whitby is a great place to amble among pretty buildings including 18th-century fishermen's cottages and to feast on some of the best fish and chips you’ll ever eat, served in the old-school, waterfront Magpie Café.
Where to Stay: The Hideaway, Hawsker
From an industrial powerhouse with a turbulent history, the Northern Ireland capital has become both a fashionable party town (especially in its Cathedral Quarter) and a cultural behemoth filled with world-class theatres and music and arts venues. The biggest draw of all is Titanic Belfast, a unique multimedia museum bearing witness to the fact that the famous liner was built in the city’s shipyards, now part of the Titanic Quarter. This is also a city for foodies, with an array of fabulous places to eat and some fantastic craft breweries and gin distilleries to discover.
Where to Stay: The Titanic Hotel
Elegant and grand in feel, Somerset’s largest city is UNESCO World Heritage listed for its extraordinary architectural treasures, ranging from one of the best-preserved Roman bathhouses in the world to crescents of stately Georgian buildings. The spa town traditions live on at Thermae Bath Spa with its roof-top pool, but there are also a rich literary heritage and cultural venues to investigate, from the Jane Austen Centre to the historic Theatre Royal, plus chic shopping and brilliant bistros, bars and pubs.
Where to Stay: The Bird
To book your UK holiday or break for this summer, call your Travel Counsellor today.
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