Whether it’s down by the white beaches, or up in the green mountains, we often forget that there’s beauty right in front of us, often rushing to the landscapes of Italy or Spain first. Recently ‘staycations’ are becoming more popular as they’re easier to travel to and often work out a lot cheaper than going abroad, not to mention less stressful and just as relaxing.
Check out our top 15 unusual weekend breaks around the UK for something a little bit different that you couldn’t even guess were part of our gorgeous little island.
1. Lulworth Cove, Dorset
Arguably one of the nicest places in the country but also one of the most underrated, Lulworth Cove in Dorset is part of a World Heritage Site and it’s no surprise why. This landscape would keep any tourist around for as long as you can put off going back to work.
Getting to Lulworth Cove is fairly simple, as there is no train station at the site traveller’s can take a train or a bus to Wool, and then a short local bus to Lulworth Cove which depart from Wool station.
2. Bamburgh Beach – Northumberland
Great for dog walking, rock pooling and horse riding, Bamburgh Beach is also one of the best surf spots in the country, the perfect place to take the family.
Getting to Bamburgh Beach is fairly simple and has good public transport connections being close to both Newcastle and Edinburgh. Virgin Trains run services to Berwick-upon-Tweed where travellers can then catch a local bus to the beach.
3. Porthcurno Beach, Cornwall
A stunning beach right by the town of Penzance, Porthcurno is great for longer breaks so you can not only appreciate the beach, but also the small villages that surround it.
To get to Porthcurno Beach you can take a train to Penzance and then a local bus down to the beach. Penzance is a great place to stay as it’s a short distance from Porthcurno and has a lot to explore in itself.
4. Flamborough Head, Yorkshire
With huge white cliff faces and home to the oldest surviving complete lighthouse in the country, which dates back to 1669, Flamborough isn’t just pretty to look at, but full of culture and history too.
To get to Flamborough take the train to Hull, then jump on a bus which takes you to Flamborough in around half an hour.
5. Botany Bay, South East Kent
Botany Bay in Kent, not to be confused with Botany Bay in Australia, has been the setting for many different BBC dramas over the years, which is not surprising – it’s got perfectly pretty British views.
Travelling to Botany Bay requires getting a train to Broadstairs, then a local bus. Botany Bay is very close to popular holiday destination, Margate, and is a great place to stay.
7. Broadsands, Exmoor – Devon
One of the best places for swimming in the region of Devon, Broadsands should definitely be on your bucket list for this summer, with its secluded cove you’ll feel like the area is all yours.
Take a train to Paignton, then take a bus down to the beach. Trains to Paignton may require a change at Newton Abbot depending on the times.
8. Knockvologan, Isle of Mull
This part of the country really doesn’t look like what you would expect from the UK, with clear sea, blue lagoons and white sand it looks more like a tropical paradise. You need to see it to believe it.
Some would say Knockvologan is a little complex to get to, although it is absolutely worth it. The easiest way is to take a flight to Glasgow, a bus to the ferry terminal, get across the water and you’re on the island!
9. Mealt Falls, Isle of Skye – Scotland
Cascading down ancient green cliffs is the Mealt Falls in Scotland, on a beautiful clear day you’ll wonder why you’ve waited so long to come to this part of Scotland.
The easiest way to get to Mealt Falls is to get a train to Inverness, then change and continue your journey from there.
10. St. Nectan’s Kieve, Cornwall
Everyone knows that Cornwall is a beautiful part of the UK, but St. Nectan’s Kieve is often overlooked by tourists and locals alike. It’s not everyday you get the chance to take a swim in natural waters, some people even believe that the site is sacred, we’ll leave that for you to decide.
11. Portmeirion Village, Gwynedd – Wales
This village was built specifically in the style of a traditional Italian town and the atmosphere of the Mediterranean has definitely caught on. This find is a home (not too far) away from home.
Take a train to Chester, then change to Bangor, you can either walk or get a bus from here.
12. Cockington, Devon
OK, apart from the name there are other reasons to visit Cockington. The small village is perfectly picturesque and is full of traditional English cottages.
The closest train station to Cockington is Torquay, take a train there to travel on towards Cockington.
13. Smoo Cave, Durness
The area around the Smoo Cave is itself worth a short break, but if visiting the area, the cave itself is incredible, make sure to visit during the summer months to get a tour of the cave by boat.
If you’re starting out your journey far from Scotland you can take a flight to Inverness, stop over for a night or two to explore an extra city, then take a bus to Smoo Cave.
14. Gough’s Cave – Cheddar Gorge
OK, so everyone’s heard of the Cheddar Gorge and everyone know’s it’s in England, but have you been to Gough’s Cave in the Gorge? If you missed it, then you should use it as an excuse for a short break to complete your trip with underground chambers and strange rock formations.
One of the more simple routes – take a train to Weston-super-Mare and from there a bus to Cheddar Gorge.
15. Glencoe – Scotland
Glencoe – recently voted the most romantic Glen in Scotland, this part of the country is perfect as a surprise trip for a loved one with, of course, amazing hiking opportunities.
To get to Glencoe take a flight to Glasgow, if you’re at the other end of the country, then a bus.