Unmissable British Places to Staycation
We have picture-perfect rolling hills, lined by woods full of trees older than time. We have chocolate box villages, with wobbly, cobbly streets and old thatched roofs. We have long stretches of beach and soaring, ragged coast lines that lovingly hug the shore. Britain is beautiful, which is why we’re staying home for the summer.
It’s agreed, then. 2020 is the year of the staycation, and we’re embracing it – dodgy weather and all. Our little island has a lot to show us, and we’re ready to pack an overnight bag and enjoy it. That’s why we asked team Cath Kidston to come up with a list of their utterly favourite, unmissable places to visit this summer.
So … where to first?
Three must-sees: The Roman Baths, Bath Abbey, Pulteney Bridge
An ultimate staycation spot since Roman times, Bath’s honey-coloured Georgian architecture, surrounding Somerset countryside and thriving independent shops-and-restaurant scene mean there’s plenty to see and do. From the sweeping arc of the iconic Royal Crescent to the touch of Italy offered by Pulteney Bridge, we do love spending a weekend in a city that lets us live out all our Jane Austin fantasies.
Three must-sees: The Shambles, York Minster, The Ouse
If you’re a grown adult and still waiting on your letter from Hogwarts (an issue at the sorting office, we’re sure), a weekend trip to York will be right up your street. Why? Well, the wonderfully wonky ‘Shambles’ – a narrow, 14th century roadway bursting with life - is said to have inspired ‘Diagon Alley’, which many of the shops there pay homage to. Otherwise, York is also a melting pot of thousands of years of Saxon and Roman history, breathtaking architecture and fantastic attractions for families.
Three must-do’s: Walk the Cotswold Way, Visit Copse Hill Road, Lower Slaughter (the most romantic street in Britain), Visit Cotswolds Lavender Farm.
If you close your eyes and picture chocolate-box English countryside, chances are the picture you’ve painted looks like a corner of the Cotswolds. With over 3000 km of trails throughout the area, it makes an ideal, photograph-friendly, affordable family staycation full of walks, picnics and bracing British fresh air.
Three must-sees: Brighton Pier, Royal Pavilion, North Laine.
For a small city, Brighton packs a big personality. An easy going, easy-to-love energy embraces visitors from the pebbled beach to the infamous pier. Brighton is a staycation full of colour, fun and sunshine. Pack your travel accessories, head to the seaside, hire a bike for trails that hug the coast of the English Channel, or pick your way through the distinctly independent North Laine district – for lots of little shops you can spend the day exploring.
Three must-sees: Wells-next-the-sea, Cromer Pier, Cathedral Quarter.
With rolling countryside, sleepy, flint-built villages and around 90 miles of golden beach, Norfolk came in as a big favourite staycation for team Cath Kidston. Visit the 200 candy-coloured beach huts or the seal colony (!!!) by the coast, or tour the myriad of castles, manor houses and estates close by. With lots of pubs in pretty villages, Norfolk has our staycation tick-list licked.
Three must-sees: The view from Llechollwyn, Central Piazza, The Quayside.
From Ynys, a Welsh village on the A496, a lane leads north to the shore of the Dyuryd estuary. There, a merry jumble of white and pastel buildings reach from the trees. It’s Portmeirion – a beautiful pocket of madness. Opened in 1926, this private village has drawn crowds from all over the world with its Riviera inspired architecture, statues and corbels and the whimsical details that fill every nook and cranny. A bright, joyful jolt of escapism, within a couple of hours drive. Now, that’s what we call a staycation.
Three must-sees: Arthur's Seat, Edinburgh Castle, Leith
With wobbly, cobbly streets and towering, historical monuments on one side of the city, and the contrast of the ever-evolving ‘New Town’ on the other, Edinburgh is a double-dose of staycation value. Get your history on with a culture-clad day of sight seeing, hike up to Arthur’s Seat for a bite of fresh air and a staggering panoramic view of the city or hit the shops and stop only for a drum of whisky or two.
Do you have your staycation favourites? Share them with us by tagging your picture with #TheSummerStaycation