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.
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.
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.
Scotland serves up some of the tastiest food in the world. Our natural larder has the freshest fruit and vegetables, fish and meat and talented chefs across the country create award winning dishes that rival the best in the world. Scottish snacks are often passed through the generations, taught by your grannie when you were wee. Other snacks are modern creations, experimental and loved by the locals. Recipes for snacks such as shortbread and tablet often vary slightly from family to family and competition is fierce when it comes to who’s is best. Regional snacks such as Arran Cheese and the Arbroath Smokie are only produced is the area in which they are named after. Although they are often sold across the country if you happen to be in the area they are made you are in for a real treat if you can watch them being made or take a tour. These Scottish snacks are a mixture of traditional and new and I encourage you to sample some while you are visiting Scotland. You won’t regret it, well perhaps the mars bar...
Soft, fluffy marshmallow encased in a delicate layer of milk chocolate, sitting on a crumbly biscuit base, Tunnocks teacakes are undoubtably one of Scotland's most popular sweet snacks. The Tunnocks family began business way back in 1890 and now have a wonderful factory in Uddingston, 7 miles south-east of Glasgow. You can book a tour of the factory but it's an extremely popular tour and is often booked out years in advance. Their website is fantastic, there is a fun range of merchandise and games you can play too.
Researching a trip is always a fun part of the planning process. Gathering information, learning the history and swatting up of must-visit attractions keeps the excitement alive during the long wait until you finally get to travel. These Scotland travel tips will help you with planning your perfect trip and ensure you get the best out of your visit to this beautiful country.
1. Scotland is a country and is part of the United Kingdom, along with England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
2. There are now almost 5.5 million people living in Scotland (2019), which is a record number
3. The official currency of Scotland is GBP (Great British Pound)
4. Scotland covers over 30,000 square miles.
5. Scotland's national animal is a unicorn. That's right, we are magic.
6. Scotland national dish is the haggis. I won't say what's in it. If you are a vegetarian or vegan there are some pretty delicious alternatives.
7. Scotland's national drink is none other than Whisky. Irn Bru is also pretty famous and I highly recommend trying it.
The first time driving in any new country is daunting. Even the thought, in the lead up to the first drive, can be scary. Driving in Scotland doesn’t need to be intimidating though. In this article, I hope to put your mind at ease with all the information you’ll need. Hiring a car and driving in Scotland means you can get off the beaten track, explore areas which, if you travel by public transport, you wouldn’t be able to reach. It gives you greater flexibility and allows you to stop off for a pretty view, a toilet break or a cuppa whenever you want.
Over the years I’ve been asked so many questions about driving in Scotland and I’ll answer them below, so when you arrive in this gorgeous country you are equipped with all the knowledge you need to really enjoy exploring by car.
Quick (but important) note - There is no point hiring a car while you are in Edinburgh or Glasgow. The streets are busy and parking is expensive, that's if you can find a space. Think about hiring a car when you are leaving the city instead.
Burntisland is a small town on the coast of Fife, in between Kinghorn and Aberdour, and it’s a town that’s doing something pretty special.
It’s a town which I’ve visited practically every summer for as long as I can remember, mainly for the Fairground that comes for the entire school summer holidays. Mum used to take us when we were kids, I went with friends when we were teenagers, I took Taylor when she was wee and now I get to take my gorgeous little nephew, Declan. I have many fond memories of the town of Burntisland. Fife has lots of amazing towns but Burntisland is one that locals seem to be drawn to. It is a tourist town but not one that ever gets a lot of tourists from abroad, it tends to be Scots that head here and it’s been like that since I was young.
This post contains affiliate links, which I may make a commission from.