Which Home Nation is best for your next getaway?

The Battle of Nations - which Home Nation is next on your travel list?

Anna Nix
16th May 2023
May is the month for exams. It's the painful truth for every uni student. Yet May is also the month for wistful thinking about the summer that is waiting just around the corner. If you take a break from all the studying you might find yourself pondering your next getaway, so here are some great options within the four Home Nations.
Scotland

The first thing that comes to mind when I think of Scotland, are the Scottish Highlands. The rolling hills, the greenery, the scenery. The Highlands are definitely a great place for a student friendly getaway. Most often fitting within a student budget if you opt for camping or hostels, of which there are an abundance.

The getaway I am planning once I hand in the last of my assignments is the West Highland Way hike. Stretching from Glasgow to Fort William the hike is around 160km long. The route takes you along Loch Lomond and you end up at Ben Nevis, the UK's highest mountain. Hiking the way in eight days, carrying everything on my back, including a tent and some food, I am hoping to both survive and enjoy the journey. The hike is said to be beginner-friendly with the intensity increasing towards the end, so if you have a few days to spare, and you don’t mind some walking, this might be a good getaway for you too.

England

With England being the biggest Home Nation it’s hard to pick the best place for a getaway. It offers many nature trips, such as the Lake District, boasting the title of the biggest national park in England. Perhaps similar to the Highlands, the Lake District is best for some camping with friends. You can both enjoy some hiking as well as relaxing by the lake with your friends. A very well-deserved break after exam season.

Image Credit: @lakedistrictcumbria on Instagram

However, if you don’t fancy a trip into nature, some of the England’s cities might be a better fit for you. Besides the obvious choice of vacationing in London and enjoying some of the wonders it has to offer, there are many more cities for you to visit. Bristol being one of them, if you are a fan of some music then you shouldn’t miss the Bristol Harbour Festival taking place in July. If you do happen to visit Bristol then you shouldn’t miss Stourhead, especially if you are a fan of Austen and the 2005 Pride and Prejudice adaptation. There you can run around in the park and pretend to be Elizabeth Bennett.

Northern Ireland

Slightly out of a comfortable student budget is Northern Ireland as you will be needing flight tickets for this adventure. Good news is though that flying from Newcastle to Belfast is many times more affordable than from other major UK cities, especially if you are planning to visit later on in your summer break. June and July aren’t looking that great in terms of price, however August is still pretty accessible for those of you looking to save some pennies.

There you can visit Belfast and see the world’s largest exhibit dedicated to Titanic, if you are a fan. Alternatively, opt for more nature trips and visit the Giant’s Causeway. Seemingly a rite of passage for any visitors and definitely worth the trip. If you like the idea of relaxing in the Lake District, then you will be happy to hear that Northern Ireland has the largest lake in the British Isles. Lough Neagh is great for some wild swimming.

Wales

Wales has some great wonders to offer as well, my favourite being the national park Snowdonia. The park truly has everything, from mountains to climb and lakes to swim in, it also has some castles for you to explore. A great mix of some nature and history might be exactly what you’re looking for.

If you are yearning for some beach visits and views then Pembrokeshire Coast is the fit for you. The coast has some delightful sceneries overlooking cliffs and beaches. So, pack that swimming suit and hope for nice weather.

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