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Top 15 UK Road Trip Ideas


The UK is a fantastic location for road tripping. England and  Wales have a wide variety of vibrant cities, adorable villages, and beautiful nature on offer to keep you mesmerized during your vacation. Proudly presenting the 15 must sees on your next road trip in England and Wales:

The Top 15 UK Road Trip Ideas

1. Canterbury

The historic city of Canterbury is obviously most known for Canterbury Cathedral, the impressive Unesco World Heritage site. However, there’s more to this town: historic alleyways and stunning canals. Canterbury is also great for shopping and the typical Afternoon Tea.

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2. Portmeirion

Portmeirion is located in the stunning Snowdonia National Park. Breathing the vibe of an Italian village, this man-made town is an absolute gem on the Welsh coast. The bright colors of the buildings bright up your day even if it’s a rainy one.

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3. Jurassic Coast

Reminding us of the ’93 movie Jurassic Park and this year’s blockbuster Jurassic World, Jurassic Coast is the real deal. Another Unesco World Heritage site, this time in Exmouth and Dorset, which is absolutely worth a visit. A geology treasure chest, covering 185 million years of history.

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4. Brighton

Probably England’s most famous coastal resort. Featuring the renowned Brighton Pier with its fun fair and the country’s most eccentric palace: the Royal Pavilion. A young destination boasting with boutique hotels, shops and beachside bars.

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5. Stonehenge

A classic in the UK road trip. One of world’s mysteries not yet resolved. Who built this gigantic structure? What methods did they use? A guided tour can teach you all about the structure, but won’t answer these questions. If you’re not interested in history too much, you can see the massive construction from behind the fence.

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6. Bath

The town of Jane Austen and the Roman bathhouses. The vibe and Georgian architecture of this city is incredible, and absolutely deserves a place in this top 15. The covered market is a personal favorite of mine.

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7. Bristol

A vibrant city on the border with Wales that features the impressive Clifton’s Suspension Bridge and the steamship SS Great Britain. The latter is turned in a fabulous museum. Music, theatre, modern architecture, there’s not much that Bristol doesn’t have.

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8. Snowdonia National Park

Wales’ largest national park and also home to the UK’s tallest mountain, Mount Snowdon. Plenty of panorama views are there to enjoy, and the area is perfect if you’re into hiking and mountain sports.

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9. Seven Sisters

Your feet tingling, the strong sea breeze blowing through your hair and the best chalk cliff views of England. Looking down into the Sea from the Seven Sisters isn’t for the faint-hearted. The chalk cliffs are really high, which makes the hiking experience even more extraordinary.

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10. Conwy Castle

Wales is a true castle-country. You could easily spent your entire vacation visiting all the castles (if that is what you’re looking for of course). Conwy Castle is one of the most celebrated examples of medieval fortifications that Wales is known for. A massive construction serving as a major tourist attraction.

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11. Lake District

Being a literary hotspot (think Beatrix Potter and Jane Austen for example), the Lake District is a beautiful area in northern England. A place where luxury travel and adventure travel meet, with beautiful boutique hotels and lake cruises on the one hand, and a wide rang of mountain and water sports opportunities on the other.

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12. Oxford

Featuring a blend of English architecture and one of the world’s most famous universities (Oxford University), Oxford is a tourist attraction for a good reason. Very laid-back, yet bustling with life due to all the students inhabiting the town. BONUS: Did you know that the dining hall in the Harry Potter movies was a replicated version of the dining hall at Christ Church College?

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13. Cambridge

Being the second main university city on this list, Cambridge often gets compared with Oxford. While both town boast exquisite architecture, Cambridge feels a bit more authentic. Traditions still play a large role in the daily life of Cambridge University and you’ll come across these everywhere you go.

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14. Lavenham

This adorable little town in Suffolk boasts a collection of crooked half-timbered houses, some of which range back to the Middle Ages. Add to that the sumptuous Tea Rooms and beautiful countryside, and you’ve the perfect stop on your road trip.

Lavenham

15. London

An open door in this list of must sees, but London is the city you can’t ignore. Shopping, the best restaurants, bars, entertainment, parks, architecture… there isn’t much you can’t find here. You might want to consider stopping for a few days!

St Paul's and Millenium Bridge, London

There you go, 15 must sees on your next UK road trip. What are your additions to this list? For more inspiration, head over to the Facebook page and click the lovely like button!



Note: all photos, opinions and views in this post are mine. 

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  • My kids would go crazy for number 3, my husband would love to go to number 5, and I’d like any of them.

    I’ve always wanted to visit the UK.

    The castle that commented about on my blog no one was visiting. It wasn’t open at the time, and it was early on a Sunday morning.

    • It’s hard to choose right? I hope you get to go to the UK one day :).

      To have a castle to yourself (even if it’s just from the outside) sounds fantastic to me!

  • Lots of good ideas in here. First time I hear about the Seven Sisters.

  • So many good ideas for when we explore more of the UK.

  • Maaike, I want to do all of these. Jim and I were talking just now; we’re going to have to live in the UK for a few years to do everything we want to do!

    • Haha, well luckily not a few years, but a few months maybe! That’s what I did. Please let me know if I can be of any assistance, and if you’d like to know more about a certain destination or region in the UK. I would be glad to help you with your itinerary! 🙂

  • Great list, I’d love to visit Canterbury and Stonehedge someday. Beautiful photos!

    http://www.mintnotion.com

    • Hi Eden, thanks for visiting and for your lovely feedback. Canterbury is a wonderful village and Stonehenge is something spectacular indeed!

  • I loved reading this post and getting an inside look into the U.K.! I have several friends who have traveled to London and over England, and one studying abroad in Brighton right now. I would love to visit one day and stop by all these incredible places! Thank you so much for sharing and adding this to Wanderlust Stories! 🙂

    • Hi Gina, I’m so glad you like this post! I hope you get to visit your friend in Brighton soon (and any of the other places!).

  • It’s amazing how many wonderful road trips you came up with, and yet you didn’t even begin to list what Scotland or Northern Ireland have to offer. Truly, there is so much to see in the UK that it can keep one occupied for a lifetime.

    If you’re interested we would love to have you join us on #TheWeeklyPostcard travel blog linkup, which is open every weekend.

    • Hi Linda, I know, the UK is amazing! Sadly I only have been to Edinburgh and I’ve never been to Northern Ireland. It’s all on the bucket list though! Thanks for sending me the link, I will surely check it out! 🙂

  • HECK yes to all of these – they are all so quirky each in their own right!!

  • We did not disappointed about the entrance fee and its very beautiful especially after the facade has been cleaned So beautiful, with a lot of wonderful carvings, and architecture. The atmosphere inside was wonderful spent over an hour & a half in this beautiful cathedral. Expensive maybe on entry, but considering all the renovations in progress you can see what they are trying to achieve preserving this amazing building.

    • Hi Aijika, thanks for visiting! Are you referring to Canterbury Cathedral? It is really beautiful 🙂

  • So many good road trip options in the UK. It has been one of the pleasant surprises about moving to London. We can rent a car and drive only a few hours to some truly stunning landscapes. Love the chalk cliffs in Beachy Head near Eastbourne. Can walk right up to the edge!

    • Absolutely! I recently saw a website where people from London get together and rent a car, to split the costs. I was already planning on doing that too 😉 Beachy Head is incredible! A photo of the lighthouse was on the cover of my Lonely Planet and that was basically the reason I went there 🙂

  • Great ideas for exploring UK.

  • Nice blog! Thanks for sharing!

  • cliff

    Great article but Ben Nevis in Scotland is the highest mountain in the UK, not Snowden