The new season of Downton Abbey is about to start here in the U.S. which leaves me longing for a getaway to the United Kingdom. I get lost in daydreams of country mansions, estates situated on sprawling, well manicured properties, or the charm of riding the train into London for a day of shopping, Broadway and fine dining.
The UK is easily accessible. Just a puddle jump from New York, or from other European countries an easy train or quick flight. Travel Zoo is running some screaming deals for inexpensive short breaks. I’m hoping to tack a Thursday/Friday or Monday onto a weekend and escape before the holidays.
Here are a couple of the vacations I’m dreaming of:
The UK Coast
The coastline of the United Kingdom spans a number of different regions: Ireland, Great Britain, Shetland, Skye, the Isle of Wright and many more. Did you know the UK coast is one and a half times longer than Italy’s coast, and more than five times longer than the coastline of France? Check out this website for a complete activity guide for coastal UK. Also check out this Travel Zoo resource for getaways and breaks in the area.
If you are particularly interested in the British coast then make sure to check out information from the British Tourist Authority. You can plan a trip filled with secluded coves, small Victorian towns and 19th century beach resorts.
There are so many things to love about Scotland. Do you like castles? Scotland has them! Dancing a jig at the Highland games? Grab your kilt and head to Aberdeenshire. Do you believe in the legend of Nessie? Head to Lock Ness to catch a peak of the monster.
For more information about the extensive Highland Games check out this website put together by the Association of Scottish Games & Festivals. I’m really looking forward to attending one of the games because the events sound especially epic. For example, click to read about the Stone Put, the Scottish Hammer Throw or the Maide Leisg (disclaimer, this video is cheesy but cool).
After strolling the green rolling hills or exploring Aberdeen, Glasgow and Edinburgh, you can take respite in the kitchen. Check out this recipe for Scottish butter fudge. What could go wrong with butter, sugar and condensed milk? For a quintessentially Scottish experience make sure bag pipes are blaring while the fudge is baking.
If you head to Dublin, taking a tour of the Guinness Storehouse is a must. It’s Ireland’s number one tourist attraction for a good reason. The historic building provides seven floors of Guinness-y goodness. It includes the full history of Guinness from it’s origins in St. Jame’s Gate. You can get more information on tours by clicking here.
Travel Zoo is an EternalWandering partner but the opinions expressed above are ours only.