In search of the perfect break that’ll help redeem the crappy year that has been 2020? Then you’re in luck – because the UK is filled with local treasures that are brilliant for exploring. Whether it’s a coastal break you’re looking for, or a chocolate box town that’s picturesque in every sense – our guide to the best staycations in the UK has it all.
1. St Ive’s
📍 Where is it? Cornwall, the deep, deep South West.
✨ What’s there? Cornwall is known for its beautiful beaches that are so pretty, they don’t even resemble England. And St Ives in particular has that tropical white sand and blue sea look to it that can really help sweep you away from reality. Sunbathe as you would on your jollies, take a stroll around the beautiful town and enjoy classic fish and chips (or even better, a Cornish Pasty!).
📍 Where is it? Guernsey, Channel Islands.
✨ What’s there? Alderney is off the mainland so already feels like a foreign holiday, but its the stunning coastal sights that are the most attractive. The pastel coloured layered houses at the harbour scream “photograph me!”, and there’s some absolutely stunning hotels to choose from for the ultimate break, too.
📍 Where is it? Warwickshire, just passed Birmingham.
✨ What’s there? Famous for being the birthplace of William Shakespeare, Stratford-upon-Avon has retained its medieval buildings for all to see. It’s the perfect spot for literary fans to explore, but also great for those who appreciate traditional British beauty, too. The tudor-style buildings are a real treat for the eyes, with the River Avon in particular providing an exceptional backdrop.
4. Loch Lomond
📍 Where is it? Scotland, a little further North than Glasgow.
✨ What’s there? Loch Lomond is an absolutely stunning lake, part of the breathtaking Trossachs National Park. The place is famous for its otherworldly beauty, and there’s plenty of sightseeing to do while you’re there. If you’re the outdoorsy type, you won’t be short of activities – with many visitors choosing to camp during their visit and take up kayaking, hiking and even wind surfing.
5. Isles of Scilly
📍 Where is it? Just off the Cornish coast surrounded by the Celtic Sea.
✨ What’s there? There’s actually 140 islands in total, but only five that are uninhabited. Tresco, St. Mary’s and St. Martin’s are the most popular, with each offering a dreamy beach holiday for those looking to escape their self-built land-locked prisons. Relax on an island of your choice, hop along them all and get exploring, or escape to one of the uninhabited islands for a day of peace and quiet.
📍 Where is it? North Wales.
✨ What’s there? Portmeirion is a very interesting little tourist village, especially designed by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis in the style of an Italian village. The whole place is a piece of art, and while it’s not a residential village, visitors can stay over in one of their few hotels and self-catering cottages. Explore its sandy beaches and bright-coloured gardens, or potter around and check out the incredible architecture throughout the village.
📍 Where is it? Yorkshire!
✨ What’s there? We had to include one of our own, now, didn’t we? And where better than lovely old Skipton for a weekend break? On its doorstep you’ll find the historic Bolton Abbey estate (with plenty of activities to take up during your visit), Skipton Castle, as well as the entirety of the Yorkshire Dales right on your doorstep. What more could you ask for?
📍 Where is it? East Sussex, right on the Southern Coast of England.
✨ What’s there? Brighton is considered to be really cool these days, and there’s no pondering as to why. It has a great bar scene, a nostalgic pier, and all the amusements that’ll take you right back to your childhood. It’s literally the epitome of simpler times – except with adult things to do, too (and a brilliant vintage shopping scene!).