Yep, we’re counting down the days until we can pack up the car and escape somewhere for a weekend, too. Until then, we can at least start dreaming about travel, right? The United Kingdom has no shortage of beautiful places to visit. Cities packed with hip restaurants, cultural events and trendy arts scenes, alongside picturesque scenery and miles of coastline. Our picks of the best places to go for a weekend break in the UK include cities and rural villages.
Where to go for a Weekend Break in the UK
1. Staithes, Yorkshire
Staithes feels like a place that’s lost in time, and that’s exactly why we love it. The fishing port has higgledy-piggledy cottages and winding streets, with colourful fishing boats (cobles) moored at the mouth of Staithes Beck. The coastal hamlet sits on Dinosaur Coast, making it a fun place for fossil hunting and rock pooling.
2. Isle of Wight
This laid-back island is easily accessible by ferry from Southampton or Portsmouth, and is famous for its sandy shores, country walks and cosy tearooms. It’s also wonderfully scenic. More than half of the landscape on the Isle of Wight is designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).
With its art scene, great nightlife and liberal feel, Brighton is a must-visit town which is only 30 minutes from London by train. It has a broad shingle beach which is backed by amusement arcades and which comes alive in the warmer months.
Explore its famous creative shopping area, The Lanes, which are narrow, twisting alleyways full of independent shops and boutiques.
A city best known for its university on a global stage, Cambridge also has gorgeous waterways and great architecture. Spend your time here exploring Cambridge University, which is split into 31 architecturally beautiful colleges. You can then pop into the vibrant market square, or punt lazily down River Cam.
5. Mousehole, Cornwall
You’ll be forgiven for thinking Mousehole (pronounced “Mowzul”) belongs in the South of France – it’s about as scenic as a village in England can be. The tiny fishing village has a lively surf scene, cosy pubs serving up local seafood and an enchanting light that makes it popular with artists. Just offshore from the harbour is St Clement’s Isle, a small cluster of rocks where an ancient hermit was said to have lived.
6. Crail, Fife, Scotland
Chances are you’ve seen photographs before of this historic fishing village on the East Neuk of Fife coast. Crail’s stone-built harbour is a hive of activity as local fishermen come and go, bringing back tasty hauls of fresh lobster. It’s peaceful here, with the real charm lying in the lack of activities. Grab an ice cream at the harbour and just soak it all up.
This small Welsh town is famous around the world for its 20+ bookstores, cosy reading nooks and annual literary festival. Basically, the entire town is one beautiful library. Browse the unique second-hand bookshops and other independent stores, or pop along to a local market.
You can also pick up the Wye Valley Walk to the east or west or Offa’s Dyke Trail to the north or south.