5 Unique UK Locations For A Weekend Break

During the uncertainty of travel amidst the world pandemic, maintaining calm and sensible is key, much the same as is with our travel plans. The UK is full of many unique and interesting destinations, off the beaten track that aren't swamped by thousands of tourists and boast both beautiful views and exciting things to do. 

Travelling within the UK for the time being is an interesting concept, mostly because we are able to cut down on carbon emissions that are caused on planes and some trains - coach travel is the most favourable due their low emissions. So how exactly can we enjoy the UK with its usual abysmal weather? Well, the key to enjoying the poor weather is to find indoor places that have activities as well as great locations that can still be enjoyed during rainfall.

The UK is home to many unique and intriguing places that will leave you feeling exhilarating and give you inspiration for more UK travel. All of these places are near either train or bus stations which will make your travel much easier if you are not using a car. The UK has plenty to offer and springtime is one of the best times of the year to start taking advantage of the beautiful scenery.

1. Ripon, North Yorkshire 

Yorkshire has some hidden gems that is for sure. Every country lane in Yorkshire leads to a village or town, or countrywalk, riddled with majestic qualities, pure country air and always the typical northern humbling smile. With oodles of artistic flair and style, Ripon possesses so much potential for people who love to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Just a few short miles out of spa town Harrogate, Ripon is a city, with a stunning Cathedral, picturesque riverside, lots of little vintage shops and bargain shops that make this a lovely getaway for someone who enjoys Yorkshire life at its best. It is within driving distance to York where there are plenty of hotels and B&Bs in the area. The cobbled streets of Ripon are full of charm. Places in the area of interest for all are:

Lightwater Valley - Theme Park 

Newby Hall And Gardens

Workhouse Museum, Ripon

Ripon is also now home to one of the county's biggest five star hotels, the newly renovated Grantley Hall, a beautiful spa hotel, that offers a divine luxury feel, with some of the country's best facilities. Their wellness retreat, mixed with opulent design and exceptional dining, including their Shaun Rankin restaurant (Grantley Hall), is 5 out of 5 across the board. 

Grantley hall ripon
Image: Tatler


2. East Grinstead, West Sussex

East Grinstead is nestled down in West Sussex away from the hustle and bustle of London, around twenty seven miles south to be exact. It borders Surrey and Kent and is a civil parish in northeastern corner, boasting lots of little shops, souvenir shops and cafes with some beautiful Tudor buildings. The number of vegan cafes in the area is rising also. East Grinstead itself may be tiny, but it's the surrounding areas that make this such a prime location for a weekend away. It's close to London, it's well connected with trains and coaches alike and if you wish to, you can also visit some of the more acclaimed parts of town. For a while, Saint Hill Manor in the area is the HQ of the some may say 'cult' religion Scientology but the manor itself is free to look around, but you may find yourself stumbling upon the staff members who will be quick to try and convert you to their ways. Nonetheless, the building is stunning and is a Grade II listed Manor House. Other things in the area to do are: 

Ashdown Forest 

British Wildlife Centre

National Trust - Standen House

Photo: L Ron Hubbard 

3. Kendal, Cumbria

Kendal may be a popular choice on the list, but it is fair to say that it should certainly be up here. At a faction of the price of neighbouring Lake District, Kendal offers much cheaper accommodation and has many places of interest in the town itself. The river Kent runs through Kendal and it is very well connected via car from the M6. Kendal is a prime location if The Lake District is a destination you'd like to visit but the town itself is full of hidden gems, including it's famous Kendal mint cake which can be found in many of their confectioners. Just outside of the National Park, its location means that for walkers and history lovers alike, it boasts many activities for all. Budding photographers and artists will feel very at home here, the areas in and around Kendal are perfect for setting up your easel and paints. In addition to this, it has many museums and restaurants for food lovers, its most famous restaurant, Greenhouse Restaurant, situated in Castle Green, a local and stunning restaurant that will tempt your tastebuds. Take a peek at what else the area has to offer for that much needed weekend away:

Abbot Hall Art Gallery

Kendal Castle

Sizergh Castle 

4. Buxton, Peak District

This little area of the Peak District in Derbyshire, has plenty of luscious green and pleasant land around it. Nestled in the west of the peaks, it is an all round location for families and couples alike. Boasting caravan parks and hotels, Buxton, home of the mineral water, has a feel good vibe with the fresh woodland air surging through it. Buxton is a spa town and you'll find that despite it's remote location, there are a few things to do - it is also well connected to Manchester. The hotels and air BnBs in the area may not be as prevalent in the big cities but there is a camp site for those who take their caravans or camper vans. For walkers, this will be heaven, there are lots of trails and touristy things to do that won't be overcrowded through the springtime. Some things to do in the area are: 

Pooles Cavern and Buxton Country Park 

Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

Buxton Crescent


5. Cirencester, Gloucestershire 

Known as the Gateway to the Cotswolds, Gloucestershire certainly has some hidden gems and some of Britain's most idyllic streets and villages. The Cotswolds certainly does bring in the tourism, but Cirencester, a little market town in The Cotswolds, it is the larger area with shops and restaurants that certainly feel a little more like Central Europe in parts than England. The town square boasts similar vibes to that of Prague, Czech Republic or Poznan, Poland. It's relatively quiet and quite idyllic in many ways, with plenty of coffee shops, Toro Lounge is a popular choice for vegan eaters. So whether you want to find the outdoors or amble around quaint museums, Cirencester could be a lovely choice: 

Corinium Museum 

New Brewery Arts

Chedworth Roman Villa 

England is home to a plethora of exciting locations, the top five have been chosen based upon their locations, accessibility and facilities that are good for both disabled and non-disabled travellers. As always, checking on booking.com to see what they have to offer for the dates you wish to travel is always helpful to ensure that you can grab the best deals of the moment. From hotels and B&Bs, there is always something for all budgets and styles. Get inspired to travel within your own country, now more than ever, let's take advantage of what is on our doorstep.


Here are some more hotspots for 2020 that will make you lust further after UK travel: 

  • Barnstaple, Devon
  • Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent 
  • Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire
  • Stamford, Lincolnshire
  • Cannock, Staffordshire 
  • Skipton, West Yorkshire
  • Hexham, Northumberland
  • Alnmouth, Northumberland
  • Penrith, Cumbria
  • Andover, Hampshire
  • Bath, Somerset
  • Martlesham, Suffolk
  • Wroxham, Norwich

Be inspired. Start planning today.

*Not sponsored.

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