Sunday, December 4th, 2016

October Travel Plans: Explore the UK!

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Since my Germany-Austria-Liechtenstein adventure, I’ve returned to the closest thing I have to a home in Europe: my pretty little northern city of Chester, England.

It’s been a welcome break.  I learned the hard way that I planned WAY too much into too short a time period.  I had no idea I would be going out until 3:00 AM and getting up at 7:00 AM every day at TBU, and I needed a break after that conference alone!

Instead, I ran from Liechtenstein to Seefeld to Salzburg to Vienna to Salzburg to Munich — activity-filled days with never more than two nights in one place, and being so busy for so long really took its toll on me.

So it’s been nice to sink back into life in the UK.  Take yesterday.  I made my new breakfast specialty, Jim Beam French Toast, and Dave and I found a Modern Family marathon on TV (which he had never seen, but quickly grew to LOVE!).  That’s as close to a perfect Sunday as I can imagine.

But still, I’m a traveler at heart.  And since my plans have changed and I’m now spending the next month in the UK, without any international trips planned, I’ve been planning lots of trips within Britain.

London

I decided to attend the opening meetup of The Meandering Catalysts Society (aka MEARCATS) — a group of London-based travel bloggers, travel PR people and other travel people who get together to share information and network.

So we met up at a bar, networked…and there were a LOT of shots.  It was all in good fun, and I may have agreed to do the Mongol Rally next year in an ice cream truck with Chris, my Vang Vieng partner in crime.

This was a very cheap trip for me.  I took the coach from Chester for 20.50 GBP round trip and had a free stay in Dylan’s apartment.  That picture above was taken from his balcony.  (Sadly, Dylan has since moved out — I bet he’ll miss that view!)

More Northern England

I am loving Northern England, and there is so much that I have yet to see up here!

Dave and I might do a getaway to the Lake District in mid-October, depending on how things go.  It looks like a beautiful, charmingly English area, and this is a great time of year to visit.

There are other cities in the north I’d like to see, especially Newcastle, with its Geordie Shore nightlife, orange people and way-too-short dresses.

I’d especially like to go to Manchester and visit my friends Ste and Darren, whom you may remember from my adventures in Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand.  (At any rate, they’re coming to Chester on Saturday, and with five out of the seven of our Vietnam group together, we’re going to have a GREAT time!)

Edinburgh

If my travel blogger friends are involved, it doesn’t take much to convince me to join them — so I’m heading up to Edinburgh this week to join the Edinburgh Travel Tweetup, as well as my friends Anthony, Kash, Nathan and Sofia and more.

This will be my first time in Scotland, and though I’ll only be there briefly, I want to take in as much of the city’s culture as I can…by drinking whisky and eating haggis.  I think I can also convince Anthony, whose site is the closest thing to the male equivalent of mine, to make some amusing videos.

As much as I’d like to stay in Edinburgh, I will probably be hitting up a hostel this time.  Should probably get on that, as I’ll be there the day after tomorrow.

Any other suggestions?

Do you have places that you love in the UK?  Preferably in northern England, northern Wales or Scotland?  I’d love to hear all about them.  Share away!

Comments

24 Responses to “October Travel Plans: Explore the UK!”
  1. Michelle says:

    My vote goes to the other end of the country I’m afraid – Cornwall and Devon (but not Newquay!).

    Liverpool, York and Alton Towers are great places up North. You will Love Edinburgh!

  2. You may be the first person I’ve ever heard express a desire to go to Newcastle! Have you been to Liverpool and York before? If not, both are worth a visit. Llandudno, Conwy and Colwyn Bay in northern Wales are also good for a daytrip. And I hope you get to go to the Lakes – it’s a gorgeous part of the country.

  3. Kelly says:

    Snowdonia, Snowdonia, Snowdonia. In Northern Wales, the most beautiful landscapes I’ve ever seen… It’s a national park, with the highest mountain in Wales, if I remember right.

  4. Rachel says:

    Pretty much all of Wales is stunning – beautiful and friendly to boot. I second the recommendation for Conwy – Caernarfon has an epic castle too, if you’re up that way. And you could always head on up to Anglesey to hand out with Wills & Kate 😉

  5. Rachel says:

    P.S. Welsh coastal towns do the BEST fish & chips in the UK. You have to try it if you end up in one of them.

  6. Labackpackerchick says:

    Ive been exploring England the last few months and the Lake District has been one of my favorite places. The different hikes and walks around town really make you feel like you’re on an adventure in the other side of the world. One of the walks in particular reminded me of trekking through the rain forests of Peru or Puerto Rico.

    Leeds is also a fun city. I enjoyed going there for a good night out.

    My grand finale before I leave next month is a day trip to Stone Henge next week 🙂

  7. Ish says:

    Edinburgh is too gorgeous for words — I’ve been telling my friends that if the capitals of the world had a beauty pageant, it’ll probably win. I’ve recently visited UK, and I have some write-ups & photos over here, if you’d like: http://ishg.wordpress.com/tag/uk/. Check out the penguin parade at the Edinburgh Zoo every 2 pm, and if you have the time, you have to take a Haggis adventure tour to Loch Ness! They’re a riot, I tell you.

    If you’re still looking for a hostel in Edinburgh, the Caledonian Backpackers Hostel is really cozy, although it’s a bit of a walk from the Royal Mile.

  8. Dan says:

    The UK is really small, don’t stay up in the north, head down south and south west for something completely different! Bristol/Brighton (South East)/Devon, the Gower in south Wales. These parts of the UK are what I’ve found the be the most beautiful.

  9. Kate, fantastic to hear of your travel plans in my native UK. You’ve certainly picked some good spots.

    I’d like to back-up Dan’s comments and say: definitely try and get down to Brighton (it’s a great party city and full of cool things to see, do and, of course, buy – in fact I was a student here for years!). Also try Devon – it’s one of the prettiest of Britain’s counties by far and has great cities like Exeter.

    One recommendation: try and get to the Cotswolds! This is my part of the world and has fantastic, lovely, architecture, quaint English towns, and lots of amazing country pubs. Lot’s to see and do with historical buildings and museums, water sports (not the taboo kind) and make sure you sample the cream teas too!

  10. Adam says:

    Arrr! You’re making me jealous. I really, really, really need to get back to the UK soon. London is calling.

  11. Sheryll says:

    Wales is absolutely stunning. I can’t wait to go back one day!

  12. Heather says:

    I love love love Scotland. If you get the chance head over to Glasgow, there is an amazing scene there. My other favourite place is up around Fort William (that’s where the Harry Potter train is). It might not be quite as nice this time of year, but I love it nonetheless.

    Have fun!

  13. The Vagablond just did Wainwright’s Walk across Northern England… maybe you won’t have the time, but it seems pretty awesome!

    http://www.thevagablond.com/tag/wainwrights-walk/

  14. eagertravelercris says:

    i’m jealous! as what the others have said, Edinburgh!!!! i love it more than London… 🙂
    if you have time try to go to the Highlands, if you have time…
    Lake District is nice as well…. York, Chester and Liverpool…
    And Stratford-upon-Avon, if you’re into Shakespeare.. =)

  15. Of all the trips you have done, this is the one I am most jealous of. Last year, I read a guide book on traveling to the UK – for fun! When I head to Europe again, it will be my next destination. There is so much about the UK, especially England and Scotland, that I am intrigued by and enjoy. I am definitely jealous of your itinerary as you are going to all the places I want to go!

    • Jeremy, I am getting SO excited to see more of Scotland — but dismayed that it’s pretty much the end of the season! Lots shuts down. Make sure you’re there from April to September.

  16. Fatima says:

    In September I did a road trip through northern England. We know that Edimburg and Glasgow are lovely. But it can be a turn for Harrogate, a spa town. There is a park and the city is amazing for sure one of the British crown jewels. Also loved Liverpool, a modern city that keeps the historic charm. And the largest Gothic cathedral in York, England is, it pays to know her. Happy travels!!

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