Congratulations! We made it to 2021! I hope you had a lovely Festive Season and a very Happy New Year to you.
One of my goals for this year is to start to explore my own backyard a little bit more. I’d like to think I’ve been to a lot of places in the UK, but there is still so much to explore. So with international travel still unlikely for most of this year, I thought this was the perfect opportunity to visit some of the best places the UK has to offer – and here is my list of 30 places I’m going to attempt to visit. If you missed my 2021 Goals post, make sure you check it out!
Located in the East Riding of Yorkshire, Hull has really developed over the last few years to become an incredible city. Awarded The UK City of Culture in 2017, Hull offers an eclectic mix of nightlife, culture and shopping. If you’re after a city break that doesn’t break the bank but offers a memorable experience, Hull is definitely the place for you
2. Hadrian’s Wall
Built by the Emperor Hadrian in 122AD, Hadrian’s Wall was the northern frontier of the Roman Empire for almost 300 years, running from the River Tyne near the North Sea across to the Solway Firth on the Irish Sea. Today, it mainly lies in ruin, but there are phenomenal walks which can be completed alongside this ancient defence and is a great place to visit if you’re a history buff!
3. Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle has been a constant presence in the Northumberland landscape since the Norman Conquests. The Castle has famously been used in a handful of films and TV shows, most notably the Harry Potter series! Today, you can lean about the Castle’s history, it’s current residents and even take broomstick training lessons!
4. Angel of the North
One of the most famous pieces of public art in the UK, Antony Gormley’s Angel of the North was installed in 1998 and has been welcoming visitors to Newcastle and Gateshead ever since. With a wingspan larger than a jumbo jet, and height taller than four double decker buses, the Angel of the North is believed to be the biggest angel sculpture in the world.
Harrogate is a Victorian Spa Town located in the heart of Yorkshire. After the discovery of its first springs in 1571, Harrogate soon developed into a popular spa town with its waters believed to have medicinal purposes. Ever since this discovery, Harrogate has continued to be a popular tourist spot, boasting beautiful landscapes, a unique history and plenty of stunning architecture to keep you coming back for more.
6. Roman Baths, Bath
Once one of the greatest religious spas of the ancient world, Bath’s thermal springs still flow with natural hot water today. Visitors can experience the Roman Baths for themselves, walk along ancient Roman pathways and see the Temple of Sulis Minerva.
Elsewhere in Bath lies one of the West Country’s largest examples of Perpendicular Gothic architecture – Bath Abbey. Originally founded in the 7th Century, Bath Abbey is still used as a place of worship today and is also a phenomenal attraction to visit. And if you’re visiting on a weekend, make sure you head to a rugby game!
7. Blackpool Tower
First of all, how I’ve lived in the UK for my entire life and never visited Blackpool is beyond me.
Blackpool Tower is probably the most famous landmark in all of Blackpool. Inspired by the Eiffel Tower, it proudly stands 518 feet tall, making it the tallest man-made structure in the British Empire when it first opened in 1894.
Snowdonia National Park was the first designated Park in Wales and is home to the highest peaks in the UK outside of Scotland. Snowdonia offers so many activities ranging from hiking, to mountain biking and golfing! Home to many ancient monuments and museums, there is plenty to discover on your trip to this Welsh adventure capital.
9. Brecon Beacons
Staying on the topic of Welsh National Parks, Brecon Beacons is famous for its incredible hiking trails and green open spaces. With a vast landscape ranging from mountain peaks to moorland, breath-taking waterfalls and a rich culture to boot, there is something for everyone on a visit to the Brecon Beacons!
10. Three Cliffs Bay, Swansea
Boasting a spectacular coastline, three limestone cliffs and salt marshes, a visit to Three Cliffs Bay is a wild adventure! The Gower Peninsula boasts to many exciting activities from kayaking to surfing and stand up paddle-boarding, making it the perfect destination for any adventure lover.
Cambridge is probably most famous for it’s University which was founded in 1209. But this university city is home to so much more! You can spend your days here walking round the quaint market square, punt down the River Cam or take a leisurely walk through the Botanical Gardens. If you’re after a relaxed trip, Cambridge might be the destination for you.
Birthplace of William Shakespeare, Stratford-Upon-Avon is stepped with centuries of culture and history. From exploring Shakespearean properties, to discovering Harvard House and Holy Trinity Church, there is so much to see in this part of the UK.
13. Robin Hood’s Bay
Located on North York Moors’ Heritage Coastline, Robin Hood’s Bay is an old fishing village which the perfect location for a family getaway. Here you can discover ancient fossils, rock pools and take a stroll on the dog friendly beach.
Winchester was the first capital of England and remained the most important town in the country until the Norman Conquest. The town has such a rich heritage, so there is so much incredible history to discover and learn. One of the most popular attractions here is the Cathedral – with over 1000 years of history, it is Europe’s longest medieval Cathedral.
15. Scottish Highlands
If you’re someone who loves to get lost in nature, taste delicious food and meet incredible people, the Scottish Highlands are for you. From beautiful lochs, to dolphins off the Moray Coast and Britain’s highest peak at Ben Nevis, there’s something for everyone at the Scottish Highlands.
You can find some more information on Ben Nevis here, including local weather forecasts, FAQS and some great information on its history!
Located on Scotland’s North East Coast, Aberdeen is famous for stunning architecture and granite buildings which shimmer in the sunlight. Here the harbour meets the city centre, and it’s common to see a pod of dolphins playing in the harbour’s waters.
17. The New Forest
Home to dozens of wild horses, The New Forest is a tranquil place to visit, filled with woodlands, open moors and cliff top walks! One of the biggest event in The New Forest’s calendar is the New Forest and Hampshire County Show, an annual three day agricultural show held at the end of July!
18. Haworth, West Yorkshire
Haworth is famously the home of the Brontë Sisters, attracting visitors from across the globe. This village is so picturesque, you can easily spend hours here walking down it’s cobbled streets and taking in some of the beautiful landscapes which surround it.
19. Durham Heritage Coast
One of the best coastlines in England, the Durham Heritage Coast runs 20 miles from Sunderland to Hartlepool and offers dramatic coastal views and the opportunity to travel through the North East’s Industrial Heritage.
20. North York Moors
Teeming with beautiful landscapes, historical abbeys and postcard worthy towns and villages, the North York Moors are a great place to visit if you are in the North of England. They have recently been awarded Dark Sky Status too, making them the perfect destination to witness the night skies and discover our astronomical heritage.
21. Holy Island, Lindisfarne
In 635AD, St Aidan travelled from Iona and founded a monastery on the Island of Lindisfarne. Today, people from all walks of life visit the Island, with many choosing to visit via the Pilgrim’s walkway which connects the mainland to the Island. Be careful to check the tide times and plan your trip accordingly!
One of the best-known prehistoric monuments in Europe and a World Heritage Site, Stonehenge is a great place to visit. The biggest attraction at Stonehenge is the stone circle. With a history spanning 4,500 years, the circle is an engineering masterpiece and is now a source of inspiration and spirituality for many visitors.
23. South Downs
The South Downs National Park is located in Hampshire, and offers visitors a unique tranquil experience through some of England’s finest countryside to discover rare and internationally important species of flora, fauna and wildlife.
24. Isle of Arran
A trip to the Isle of Arran is the perfect way to escape the busy hustle and bustle of city life. Here you can take part in some exhilarating outdoor activities, discover a vast array of wildlife and taste delicious foods including creamy cheeses, beers and delicious ice creams.
25. Chester Zoo
Opened in 1931, Chester Zoo is one of the UK’s largest zoos. With over 20,000 animals and 500 species, a visit to Chester Zoo is a great day out for all the family.
26. Lundy Island, Devon
Lying off the coast of North Devon, Lundy Island is a fantastic place to visit for a quiet trip away from our hectic every day lives. Here the Atlantic Ocean meets the Bristol Channel, with nothing between it and the shores of America. Lundy Island is a haven for rock climbers, with it’s highest point reaching 469ft above sea level!
One of Britain’s best cultural cities, Lincoln’s history can be traced back to 300BC. The city boomed during the Industrial Revolution, excelling in engineering – the first ever tanks were designed and built in Lincoln in 1916, leading to Lincoln being named Tank Town. Once the tallest building in the world, Lincoln Cathedral is a perfect landmark to visit.
Probably best known for its delicious pudding, Bakewell is situated on the banks of the River Wye and is the biggest town in the Peak District. Here you can visit the medieval five-arched stone bridge, take a chilled stroll through its iconic streets, and discover some delicious treats. And of course, you’ve got to try its famous Bakewell pudding too!
29. Ironbridge Gorge, Shropshire
The Ironbridge Gorge is a deep Gorge in Shropshire which contains the River Severn. It’s deep exposure of the rocks which were cut through by the Gorge exposed coal, iron ore and limestone, allowing the surrounding area to rapidly develop their Industrial Industries and boost their income. Today, nature has once again reclaimed the Gorge, making it a beautiful place to visit and creating a maze of footpaths, bridleways and country lanes. Of course there are plenty of museums to visit to learn more about the Industrial Heritage of the area!
30. Fort William
Located in Lochaber in the West Highlands, Fort William if often called the ‘Outdoor Capital of the UK’. There are plenty of things to do here including visits to some of the most unique castles and distilleries to be found in all of Scotland.