The UK makes for a terrific travel destination for just about anybody. That’s because it’s a country with virtually everything: vibrant cities and attractive beaches, urban monuments, gorgeous countrysides, and enough history and modern culture to keep anyone busy and entertained. But in addition to all these commonly mentioned features of the UK, there are plenty of specific activities for people to enjoy around the country. These five can give you a true taste of what’s on offer.
Do A London Walking Tour
I mentioned recreation beyond simple sightseeing, but London is truly one of the great cities in the world for taking in the iconic buildings and monuments. Instead of trying to see it all on your own, however, consider a professionally organised walking tour. London Walks offers a variety of different touring options that can take you through the city and past some of its most beautiful and historic sights. And if you really want to pack the day with activity, you can always start one of the city’s legendary pub crawls at the conclusion of the walking tour!
Indulge At Wimbledon
Wimbledon is an interesting event in that it feels simultaneously as if it’s made for tourists and yet is still quintessentially British. At any rate, it’s one of the most enjoyable events on the British calendar, and if you’re looking to splurge on a bit of recreation during a summer trip to the UK it’s a great option to consider. The grounds are wonderfully charming, the tournament always offers thrills, and some find that some of the traditional snacks and customs at Wimbledon are the best parts! In fact, The Guardian listed “strawberries at Wimbledon” as one of its 50 great things to do in Britain, citing the popular snacks of strawberries and cream coupled with long glasses of Pimm’s that sports fans often enjoy in between matches (or during rain delays).
Hike Hadrian’s Wall
Hadrian’s Wall is one of the most stunning attractions in the UK, particularly for those who enjoy history. Built across the northern end of what was once the Roman outpost of Britannia by Emperor Hadrian around 128 C.E., it was meant to wall off the edge of the world. In varying degrees of disrepair, the wall still stands, snaking along the English countryside on a line roughly even with Newcastle. There are ruined forts and castles along its length as well, which make for nice stops on what can really be an amazing hike. As an added bonus, some travellers might enjoy learning that it was this wall and the aforementioned concept of its construction that in part inspired George R.R. Martin’s wall in the Game Of Thrones books.
Take In A Major Horse Race
Like Wimbledon, major horse races showcase some of the best of British culture through sport – though in an entirely different way. At horse races you’ll find noisy, enthusiastic crowds who come prepared to drink, socialize, and show off some eccentric fashion as well as to watch the actual races. There are a number of races to choose from, but the most fun of them all may just be the Grand National, held at the Aintree Racecourse near Liverpool. Described by Betfair as the biggest race in jumps racing, it always brings some incredible competitors together and caters to a passionate crowd of racegoers. Through betting, spectating, dressing up, and for lack of a better word, partying, fans at Aintree aren’t afraid to let loose.
Have A Picnic On The Beach
Does anything sound quite so British as fish and chips and/or tea on the beach? Well, perhaps the beach part doesn’t fit too many international tourists’ imaginations when it comes to the United Kingdom. But you may be surprised. A look through the Telegraph’s list of the 20 best beaches in the country reveals not only some great coastal stretches but an impressive amount of variety as well. Some of the beaches look tropical, some resemble the Atlantic coastlines in the U.S., and some are rocky and adventurous, almost unique to Britain. A trip to any of these beaches for a relaxing afternoon and a meal is sure to show you a different side of the UK.
Naturally there are other activities that come to mind as well. There are football matches, theatrical performances, castle tours, sailing excursions, etc. But these five offer a nice variety of experiences that can certainly keep you busy on your next trip to the UK.