You don’t need to travel abroad, or spend lots of money to have a joyful holiday. Sometimes the simple pleasures are the best. That’s why we’ve put together a list of five wholesome activities and experiences to help you make the most of your weekend away, wherever you choose to explore.
Cycling holidays are a great way to explore new parts of the country, while getting an endorphin boost. Plus, if you already own your own bikes, it’s free to do! The National Cycle Network is a network of safe cycleways up and down the country, including 5,220 miles of completely traffic-free paths. Find a route that suits your level of fitness and enjoy the views. If you’re lucky, you may even find a route that allows for a cheeky pub lunch before cycling back. Win, win.
The Lake District
Thousands of cyclists head to Cumbria every year to take advantage of The Lake District’s cycle paths. Pedal your way along winding country lanes, or take things off road on a mountain bike. Once your exploring is done, kick back and relax at the nearby WorldHotels™ Distinctive Ambleside Salutation Hotel & Spa. Wine and dine in the hotel restaurant, or if you’ve still got energy to burn, take advantage of the on-site pool.
South coast trails
National Cycle Network Route 2 is a long distance trail linking Dover in Kent with St. Austell in Cornwall. If you’re a seasoned cyclist, this route makes for the perfect long weekend across two favourite south coast destinations. Start you trip with an evening at the Beachcroft Hotel, BW Signature Collection in Felpham Village, before taking to the saddle for a scenic four-hour cycle down through Portsmouth, following the route along the coast to Southampton. Finish off with a well-deserved spa at Best Western Chilworth Manor Hotel, perfectly located to explore Southampton once your feet have recovered.
Travel back in time with a ride on a traditional steam train. Though British steam trains have been out of use since the late 1960s, a few still remain as attractions, offering a magical day out for holidaymakers and day-trippers old and young.
Ride the East Somerset Railway
The East Somerset Railway, located in Shepton Mallet in Somerset, is 2.5 miles long, offering a 40 minute ride through the Mendip Countryside. Board the train at Cranmore Station and enjoy view of the rolling hills on your way to Mendip Vale. Make a weekend of your trip by booking to stay at our nearby Best Western Plus Centurion Hotel.
Just a half-hour drive from Best Western Stoke on Trent City Centre Hotel, you’ll find the Churnet Valley Railway. Ride the Churnet steam train through Staffordshire’s hidden valley, into the Staffordshire Moorlands to experience the Northern countryside from an entirely new perspective. There’s even the option to dine on board if you’re after a more luxury experience.
The simplest pleasure of all – freshly cut sandwiches, eaten in the open air. The UK is home to 15 beautiful National Parks, all of which are free to explore at any time of year. What better way to rediscover nature?
The Yorkshire Dales
The Yorkshire Dales National Park is an area of outstanding natural beauty in the north on England, harbouring tranquil meadows, dramatic hills, rivers, lakes and waterfalls. Less than 20 minutes by car from Black Horse Inn, BW Signature Collection you’ll have everything you need for the most wholesome weekend away.
Pembrokeshire Coast National Park
Pembrokeshire Coast is the smallest of the UK’s National Parks, but also one of the most spectacular. Home to more Blue Flag beaches than any other area of the country, you’ll lose track of time exploring it’s golden sands, lesser-known bays and hidden coves. Book Best Western Lamphey Court Hotel & Spa for easy access to this magical natural site.
A city’s street art can tell you a lot about its culture. So why not take yourself on an alternative city tour, by exploring the hidden murals and artistic graffiti on display? You’d be surprised just how much a street art tour could reveal of your holiday destination.
Discover Banksy in Bristol
Though Banksy is now a world-famous artist, some of his oldest pieces can still be found hidden around the city of Bristol. The Banksy Walking Tour is self-guided and completely free, making it the perfect cheap and wholesome activity for your next city break. Reflect on all your favourite Banksy works back at Best Western Henbury Lodge Hotel.
Now famous as Scotland’s mural capital, the Glasgow City Centre Mural Trail reveals a fresh, colourful side of Glasgow, without costing a penny. With new murals constantly being added, a proper tour of the city’s iconic art will take about a day, with plenty of cafes and bars on route. And once your feet are feeling weary, Best Western Glasgow South Eglinton Arms Hotel offers the perfect place to rest your head.
Whether you’re shopping for an occasion, or just fancy a bit of a wander, the UK’s independent shopping hubs are just waiting to be discovered. From vintage boutiques to independent bakeries and jewellers selling their own hand-made designs, you’re bound to have your Christmas lists checked off for a least the next few years.
Wander Manchester’s Northern Quarter
Manchester’s artistic centre, the Northern Quarter is the place to go for quirky, independent shopping and one-of-a-kind finds. Complete with antique and second-hand stores, sustainable skincare, independent galleries and unique, hand-made fashion, the Northern Quarter really is a treasure trove. Keep up with the cool vibes by booking into The Ainscow Hotel, BW Premier Collection, our stylish, boutique hotel in a former red-brick mill.
In the shadow of Edinburgh Castle, discover a maze of independent shops, clothing boutiques, jewellers and cafes. Whether you’re shopping for tartan and tweed, or shortbread and whisky, you’re sure to go home with small Scottish fortune. Book your stay in WorldHotels™ Elite Edinburgh City Centre Bruntsfield Hotel to enjoy all that the Scottish capital has to offer.
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