When it comes to showing off the prettiest villages in England I knew I'd struggle to whittle them down. England is rich in picturesque quaint villages, each of them unique and special in their own right. Pastel coloured cottages with hanging flowers baskets, winding cobbled lanes and churches which have stood proud for centuries. Close knit communities with locals who know each others names and meet for a chat while buying the newspaper in the morning. These villages have been chosen by some of the Uk's top bloggers as their all time favourites.
Corfe Castle, Dorset by Sophie from Escape to Britain
Nestled in the Purbeck Hills in Dorset, the stunning village of Corfe Castle is an absolute must-see on your next British adventure. Close to the salty sea breeze and surrounded by the kind of charming countryside that is so synonymous with West Country England, 'Corfe Castle' is not only the name of a village but also that of a historic castle which stands high and proud above the rest of the settlement and is well worth a visit in of itself.
There's been a fortification on site since at least the 10th-century, though it wasn't until the Normans arrived around a century later that the castle grew to true prominence in the surrounding region. During the Middle Ages, Corfe Castle was often said to be the 'most fortified castle' in England. Unfortunately, the complex of buildings were badly damaged during the Civil War, and today romantic ruins can be explored for a small fee.
Elsewhere in Corfe Castle, there are a myriad of delightful corners to discover, including several eateries and the smallest town hall in England which houses a free to visit museum. A visit to Corfe Castle parish village and its castle can easily be combined with a trip to the nearby Jurassic Coastline, making for the perfect English escape
Recommended place to stay Mortons House Hotel
Are you coming to Scotland? You could consider glamping. Fife, half an hour from Edinburgh, has some amazing options to have an alternative and quirky stay. If you are bored with hotels and B+B's and want something a little different, but don't quite fancy carrying a tent on your travels then glamping could be for you. Glamping is technically posh camping and as it has become more and more popular the accommodation has grown in variation, from shepherd huts and cabins to beach huts and bothies. When 'glamping' first became a 'thing' the options were limited to wigwams and a few yurts in Scotland but there is now a diverse range to choose from and property owners are stretching their imaginations and creating some wonderful places to stay.
Fife is a good option, not only because it's super easy to base yourself here and travel to other must-visit areas on day trips but also because it's an absolutely beautiful area in its own right. It's only 30 minutes from Edinburgh, across the stunning Forth Bridges and has many pretty, colourful villages, lots of history, bustling towns and plenty of forest, beach and countryside walks. There are 117 miles of stunning coastal path and the new Pilgrim's way from North Queensferry to St Andrews, a 64-mile walk following in the footsteps of Pilgrims who once trekked to St Andrews.
Check out these options for glamping. Fife is a brilliant region and has something for everyone and imagine doing it all and then laying your head down at night in one of these gems.
Catchpenny Safari Lodges, Elie
A collection of super-sized luxury safari tents which overlook the water and are on the edge of the Fife Coastal Path, perfect for glamping Fife. These tents aren't just tents, they have proper and extremely comfortable beds, a hot shower, a wood-burning stove, a delightful cabin bed, a full kitchen with gas hob and fridge and lots of cosy cushions and blankets to keep you snug round the fire pit in the evening. Each tent sleeps 6 people, with two doubles and a twin room. Catchpenny is also dog-friendly so you can bring the pooch and is situated near the cute little village of Elie in the East Neuk so you can browse the independent shops, eat at the fantastic restaurants or buy goodies to take back to the tent from Ardross Farm Shop. DOG-FRIENDLY
Scotland has some seriously impressive highlights such as the mountain ranges, the islands and the road trips but I do love to find little colourful and quirky towns and villages. Here is our pick of the cutest villages and towns in Scotland. They are often an excellent place to base yourself while you explore, as the accommodation is nearly always quaint and cosy. One of my favourite moments of a road trip is stumbling upon a tiny village, the little worn place name sitting squint by the side of the road welcoming passers-bys. The houses painted in an array of colours which you would usually never put together but somehow just work. The wee shops with handmade tablet and locally produced marmalade and a chatty local behind the till. Local artists displaying their work in the community centre, flower baskets hanging outside the village museum which tell stories of the homes and jobs of families long gone. I love wandering the lanes, admiring the doorways and gardens, poking about in the shops and treating myself to a second-hand book and a fridge magnet (always!). Finding a cute little cafe with a window seat so I can enjoy a cup of tea and watch the locals go about their day. Scotland has some fantastic towns and villages and I encourage you to spend time in some, it’s a lovely way to immerse yourself in the Scottish way of life.
This list is some of my favourite towns and villages I’ve discovered on my travels around Scotland but I’m nowhere near finished so I’ll be adding more as I find them.
Cutest towns and villages in Scotland
Portpatrick, Dumfries and Galloway
You don’t have to visit the north-west for outstanding coastal views, Portpatrick sits on the west coast of the Rhins of Galloway peninsula and the scenery rivals any that can be found up north. This town is cute as a button, the pastel-coloured houses surround a small bay with beautiful clear water and are backed by impressive cliffs.
If you like the idea of camping but don’t want to be pitched next to other people, or you fancy wandering off into the mountains with everything you need for a night of wild camping, you are in the right place.
This post will give you an overview of wild camping in the Lake District, where you can do it and things to pack and consider. By the end, I hope you will be inspired to give wild camping a go for yourself.
This post contains affiliate links, which I may make a commission from.
Why wild camp?
Wild camping offers an escape from civilisation and if you are searching for solitude, you are likely to find it. Uninterrupted views, peaceful sunsets and unreal sunrises.
Popular wild camping spots, by design, are quiet and tranquil. If you wanted to be surrounded by other people, you would book a spot on a camp site. The back-to-basics approach to wild camping allows you to reconnect with nature.
When talking about tourism and holiday locations in the UK, Blackpool is always near the top of the list, and for good reason. Blackpool is one of the most central cities in the UK, and despite having a relatively small population compared to other cities, it’s one of the most lively too. This is because there’s just so much things to do in Blackpool. If you’re looking for somewhere to visit in the UK, or have already decided on Blackpool and are looking for some things to do, there’s definitely something here for you.
Blackpool is a city unlike any other, in that as much as it is a very kid-friendly city, there’s also plenty of things to do in Blackpool for couples, there are plenty of options in the evening and attractions for people without kids so no matter who you decide to bring you'll find lots of fun things to do.
Not only is this town situated between Edinburgh and Glasgow in the central belt of Scotland, and on the train route between the two, it also has fantastic travel links with the rest of Scotland making it easy peasy to hop on a train and head up north. A very attractive town, the houses that line the high street date from the 1800’s and there is a distinct oldy worldy feel. There are many things to do in Linlithgow, cute little independent retailers line the main street as well as local bakers, butchers, and sweetie makers meaning while you are staying there you can treat yourself to some authentic local food. There is fascinating history in the town and lots of lovely places to walk and explore. Situated in West Lothian, near the border with Stirlingshire, there are lots of big attractions nearby which makes it an ideal base to stay while you explore.
How we spend Christmas in the UK
Everyone has heard of Christmas, and even if you don’t celebrate it, it has no doubt been a huge part of your life for a long time. Today, we’ll be looking at Christmas in the UK; the old and new customs, and how it differs from other countries. Christmas has been celebrated for just over 2,000 years now, so needless to say it’s been a long ride, not just for the UK of course. This article will show you our traditions, what makes the day so special and how we make it such an important celebration.
So what does a typical Christmas in the UK look like?
Christmas is usually spent spending time with family, and often extended family as well, meaning parents and children will usually spend Christmas together, and often aunts and uncles or grandmas and grandpas will also join in the fun. People will often talk of the elusive “White Christmas”, but actually the UK only gets a single snowflake falling roughly once every 4 or 5 years, and real snow is even rarer, and it usually happens in Scotland.
If you’re looking for gigs in Manchester, then you’re in luck, because there’s a tonne of them every night, everywhere you look. Even better than that, though, all of them are in more or less the same place; that’s not to say the same venue, quite the contrary. In fact, there’s probably about 50-70 gig venues in the same 3-mile radius. This “Gig District” is, of course, the Northern Quarter-Oxford Road area of Manchester. Contained inside of this small district in the centre of the large city, is pretty much every type of music under the sun, pretty much every night.
Manchester has a very rich musical history, and we’ll be delving into that here, taking a look at artists who have historically played there, and where they played, as well as looking at the history of the places they played. Don’t worry, though, as we won’t just be living in the past, we’ll be looking at modern artists who have played at these venues, many big names you’ve no doubt heard, and, of course, we’ll only be covering venues which are still open today (we’re looking at you, Roadhouse!). We’ll also be looking at why some of these venues are still relevant today, and why you should check them all out, old and new alike.
Then we’ll be looking at some places you can eat in the Gig District, so that no matter what venue you find yourself at, and no matter what food is picking your taste today, you’ll know exactly where to go. There’s also not 1, but 3 main Manchester train stations in the area, with Picadilly and Victoria bordering the Northern Quarter, and Oxford Road Station being the centre of Oxford Road.
12 things to do in Preston, Lancashire
Preston is a city in the north-west of England, in Lancashire. At first glance, it may seem like a normal, run-down, moderately sized town, but if you look under the surface you’ll see one of the most historically rich cities in the whole country. Preston was founded as a town in 1179, and its central location made it a coveted location as a centre for both trade and travel, pretty much up until the construction of the second motorway in the UK (since the first motorway led to Preston). Preston isn’t just all about history though, if you’re looking to visit, or just looking for some things to do in Preston, then you’ve come to the right place. Whether you’re interested in sports, history, visiting with the family, or you’re a nightlife person, Preston offers plenty of activities for everyone.
Preston was made a city in 2002, despite the fact that there was no cathedral in the town. This changed, however, in 2015, when Pope Francis raised the St Ignatius church to cathedral status, making it one of only 3 Indian Catholic Churches in the world to become a cathedral.
Do you dream of getting married to the love of your life in Scotland? Many dream of a kilted piper playing Highland Cathedral on the bagpipes as they sashay down the aisle, in a fairytale dress, towards the one they are about to spend the rest of their lives with. A castle wedding in Scotland is downright romantic and there is lots of choices when it comes to location. Because you are allowed to get married almost anywhere you want in Scotland you can chose a derelict ruin, a castle with connections to your ancestors, in the grounds of a castle in a rustic folly or by a loch or you can go all out and get married in a 5 star exclusive use luxury castle with an owl to deliver your rings and full ceilidh in the evening.
Some facts about marriage in Scotland
In Scotland you can have a religious, civil, humanist or same-sex marriage, all are legally recognised.
If you are coming from outside the EU you will need a license and a Marriage Visitors Visa. You will then receive a Marriage Schedule which you will sign on your wedding day. Once you have the visa you can then apply to be married at the local registry office closest to where you will marry, you each complete a marriage notice form which has to be submitted no later than 29 days before the wedding.
If you are coming from the EU the process is the same, other than the Marriage Visitor Visa. You need to apply for a license which will allow you to get the marriage schedule which is signed on the day of the wedding and also apply to the local registry office closest to the venue and submit a marriage notice form no later than 29 days before the wedding.
Usually one, or both, of you will be required to pick up the marriage license from the office in the days leading up to the wedding and return it to the same office after the marriage. You will find out whether this is the case once you contact the office initially.