I love Britain. Today’s post is brought to you by a fellow traveller who had the opportunity to road trip through the country. Here’s hoping I can take on this adventure myself some day soon! Have you been to these places?
While most people travelling to Britain might not get any further than London, venturing a little further afield from the bright lights of the capital brings an entirely different perspective. Just a short drive away are breathtaking beaches, chocolate box pretty villages and rolling countryside. One of the best road trips is to head from London as far to the south west as you can, taking in attractions along the way. Here are just some of the best places to explore on your journey:
Probably the first, or the last, stop along the way, depending on whether you decide to head to Cornwall first and meander your way back or vice versa, Brighton is a smorgasbord of the kitsch and the cosmopolitan. There’s a cutting-edge club scene, cool little bistros and bars and plenty of nostalgic seaside fun. Head to Brighton pier for tongue-in-cheek entertainment like the arcades and fairground rides, join the crowds on the pebbled beach and pick a club to head to for the evening, like the Concorde 2, where you might be lucky enough to find Fat Boy Slim gracing the decks.
With landscape as diverse as it is beautiful, the South Downs National Park offers rolling pastures, ancient woodlands, river valleys and dramatic white cliffs. For those who love to truly get off the beaten track, the South Downs Way offers the chance to escape the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life. You might even be lucky enough to spot some of the local wildlife, which includes roe deer, hares and red kites. The track runs for 160km, but you can always choose a few kilometres of it, unless you’re feeling super fit.
Many visitors to England bypass Devon, simply travelling through it to get to Cornwall. But Devon is definitely worth a stop in its own right. As well as beautiful beaches, there are National Parks to explore on foot or by bike, quaint villages with whitewashed houses, historic manor houses and delectable local produce. It’s difficult to choose where to go out of all this, but Croyde Bay, is one beach that shouldn’t be missed. It’s a glorious sweep of golden sand where you can catch some waves and it’s just a few minutes away from the fabulously named Baggy Point, a dramatic headland where you can watch the sea crashing against the cliffs beneath you.
It means a slight detour a little to the north, but it’s worth it. Bath has to be one of the world’s most beautiful cities. The whole city has been named a World Heritage Site by Unesco and it’s not hard to see why. There are architectural wonders wherever you turn with curved streets of Georgian terraces. Whatever else you do, a trip to the Roman baths should be on your itinerary. But, while you can’t languish in them as the Romans did, you can try the New Royal Bath, a spectacular rooftop pool where you can look down upon the city.
Just because you stop off in Devon, that definitely doesn’t mean you should forgo its neighbour Cornwall. Well known as one of the world’s top surf spots, it has a laid back vibe that can’t fail to get you in the holiday mood. You can learn to surf at one of the many schools in the area or just explore the huge stretch of coastline. Cornwall is also home to the Eden Project, a huge biodome greenhouse where you can experience the humidity of the South American rainforest or the bone dry extremes of the North African deserts, all in one day.
Britain may not be very big, but it is packed with incredible attractions and breathtaking scenery. By concentrating on a smallish area, you’ll be able to appreciate what it has to offer. You can always come back for a return visit and head north next time.