My family and I will be travelling to England this spring for 15 days. We are still in the process of researching what to do, where to go, etc. I would love any feedback from anyone who has travelled to England. Is there something we need to know, is there anything we should avoid, etc.?
Being a US-American citizen, you're most likely awed by things of old age. So you just must go and see Stonehenge and Bath. Salisbury is also very nice. Don't miss the Tower of London either.
As for things to avoid I would say big cities like Manchester, Liverpool and the like. They do have their plus points but for a family trip that I presume is focused on sightseeing they probably won't be that suitable.
Here are a few ideas of things to visit:
- One University Town (Cambridge or Oxford)
- At least one Cathedral town (Canterbury, Winchester, Salisbury,
- A few Palaces and Castles. There are many all around the country.
Do not miss Hampton Court Palace near London
- At least one English garden. England has some of the most beautiful gardens in Europe. Those at Kew and Leeds Castle are really gorgeous but there are many others.
The first choice you have to make is whether you want to go North or South. The South has a better wheather, plenty of interesting sites and lovely bucolic countryside.
The North on the other hand is cheaper, has great wild landscapes, and very nice old towns such as York or Chester. The people also tend to be more chatty and welcoming than in the South (sorry southerners but that is my experience).
If you are flying to London and want to stay south, you could follow the Thames Valley until you reach Oxford. There are plenty of very nice little towns between London and Oxford such as Windsor, Henley or Sonning.
You could then go to Bath and maybe to Devon and then come back to London via Salisbury, Stonehenge and Winchester. The area around Salisbury is very rich in archeological sites and Stonehenge is just one of them.
If you visit England by car, I would recommand to avoid taking motorways too often. The distances to cover are not huge and country roads are much more picturesque.
London has some really good sight-seeing! Be warned: Londoners are like New Yorkers! Especially during 7-9am to 16-18pm as this is the busiest time!
If I was you I would try to stick to the west of England? Polite people... Devon, Buck, etc...
[ Edit: no promos in the forums thanks ]
I am not so sure about stonehenge - having heard a lot about it, i really thought i shd see it.. too many tourists ,and its just a circle of rocks... u dont really get a feeel of the place or the associated "mystisicm" of it...
Bath is lovely - small , quaint - but lovely!!!
The one place i wanted to go and i didnt get to are the white cliffs in Dover - if u like walking around a place and things, u cud go there too.... and if anyone else has some opinion on this place, do reply
u cud give the london eye a miss too - nothing great in it
It really depends on the type of things your would like to see. London has all of the obvious tourist attractions but don't spend too much time in the hustle and bustle and get out into the British country side which is England at its best. The Cotswolds have lots of great villages and it is close to Bath which is certainly worth a visit. Monkey World (of Monkey Business fame) in Dorset is good - kids will like it and the beaches in Cornwall are ok if you are heading south - but there is no guarantees on the weather in England. The Peaks District is great for Hiking and the Lakes District is stunning and well worth a visit if you can get up that far. My firt visit to England I thought York was just fabulous and I'm a huge fan of Chester - Both places have the old city walls still pretty much intact. Pembrokshire in Wales is worth checking out also.