Staycation Guide: 5 Places In The UK That Will Make You Feel You Are Abroad

Staycations are again on the rise more, and more Brits are deciding to stay home for their holidays. But where in the UK should you go if you have never had a staycation before or fancy trying something new? Here is my staycation guide is here to help.

The UK is a dynamic place full of history, natural beauty, dramatic coastlines and historical cities. Every corner has such an individual identity that no two places are alike. Some UK destinations might even give you a little taste of Europe! Here is how:

Love The Algarve? Try Devon

Branded “the English Riviera”, Devon is fantastic for families and beach holidays. It is also home to five areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, UNESCO Sites and Natural Parks.

For a cultural city break, try Plymouth or Exeter, both rich in Roman history. It it’s the relaxed coastal life you want, try South Devon. For surfing, go for North Devon and Exmoor. And for the true Riviera experience, try Torquay, Paignton, and Brixham. There are also many smaller towns and villages worth exploring if you fancy going for a drive.

Love Tuscany? Try Lancashire, Yorkshire And Cumbria

North West England and the region of Tuscany in Italy share two things in common: beautiful green panoramic views and maxing food.

Famous for its artisan food, locally sourced produce and niche eateries, the counties of Lancashire, Yorkshire and Cumbria, will entice any foodie traveler with their food festivals and farm shops galore. To work up an appetite, you can visit the castles, museums, theatres or seafront towns or you can go hiking and take in scenery so beautiful that Queen Elizabeth is reported to have said she would like to retire here.

For more active travelers, highlights are the Yorkshire Dales, the Pennines and the Lake District, where you can try all sorts of sports from golfing to sailing and paragliding. For those wanting a peaceful hideaway, try smaller market towns such as Kirby Lansdale, Hebden Bridge or Clitheroe. And if it’s a sea you seek, try Whitby, Scarborough or Lytham St Annes.

Love Switzerland? Try Scotland

If you a partial to mountain ranges, lakes and a pair of skis, then Scotland is the perfect staycation for you. With beautiful scenery, imposing castles and interesting cities thrown in for good measure, both Switzerland and Scotland will give you jaw-dropping views. Switzerland has some of the most famous ski resorts in the world, Scotland has the best ski resorts in the UK. The Swiss have the alphorn and Schnapps; the Scots have the bagpipe and their world-famous Scotch whisky. Hell, the Scottish accent might even make you feel you’re abroad!

Jokes aside, Scotland is indeed a beautiful country, with intriguing and grand history, beautiful landscape and stunning natural reserves. Even Her Majesty has a residence here, Balmoral Castle. For a city break, both Glasgow and Edinburgh are famous for their nightlife and culture. And if you like to drive, we would highly recommend the drive from Glasgow to Dundee. The views are to die for.

Love Rome? Try York

The Italian city of Rome is one of the most famous destinations in Europe, known worldwide for its rich history and vibrant culture. In the UK we have our little version thanks to the Romans themselves.

Although York existed as a settlement before the Roman invasion, it was during that period that it was declared a city of importance. Constantine the Great was proclaimed a Roman Emperor here. Even going out for a pint will yield a history lesson in pubs that used to be churches or monasteries. In recent years, York has become famous for its retail and nightlife as well as its history, and although it’s much smaller than Rome, you will have plenty to do and see.

Love Berlin? Try Liverpool

Berlin and Liverpool share many commonalities. Both have witnessed their fair share of political and social change, but are today UNESCO Heritage Sites and European Capitals of Culture.

In the UK, Liverpool is the city with the most galleries and national museums outside of London. The birthplace of the Beatles, it also boasts a very strong art scene. On a more outrageous note, it has been said that the Liverpudlian velvet tracksuit is as infamous as the German beach thong! Liverpool is a vibrant and dynamic city, ideal for any art, fashion or music lover.

Family Vacation Packages Guide – Where Are Some Nice, Affordable Places to Go on a Family Trip?

There are plenty of nice places that offer something fun for every member of the family, from the youngest kids to the oldest great-grandparents. There are some affordable places too. Even if you have a large family, you should still be able to obtain discounts. Family vacation packages tend to offer “Kids Eat Free” deals, supervised kids programs, spacious rooms, and free activities that will appeal to everyone.

Here are a few affordable destinations that have family-friendly resorts:

Yellowstone National Park

While there are inns and lodging options around the Yellowstone area, there are also plenty of campgrounds. Just bring your own tents and enjoy the great outdoors. You have 2.2 million acres to explore. Go along some trails and try to catch glimpses of elk and buffalo.

Virginia Beach

If possible, visit in either the fall or winter when hotel rates are at their lowest. Family vacation packages at Virginia Beach are available at various hotels and resorts. There are also options for vacation rentals if you want your own kitchen.

Trinidad and Tobago

This is one of the more affordable family-friendly destinations in the Caribbean. You actually get two islands to explore and a variety of beach and mountain activities. Head to Invaders Steel Pan Yard to check out performances by steel pan bans. Another fun attraction is Tobago Cocoa Estate, where you and your kids can learn all about chocolate.

Breckenridge, CO

How about family vacation packages at a ski destination? “Breck” offers world-class skiing for all ages and all levels. There is also plenty to do in the historic downtown area. You could go during the summer and enjoy some hiking, zipping, climbing, etc. It is both the ultimate winter AND summer playground.

St. Petersburg, FL

There are 30+ quality family resorts in this Florida city. For cultural attractions, stay in the downtown area. For days of fun in the sun, grab a beach resort. Hotels in St. Petersburg have an average rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars. In addition to nice accommodation, there is also plenty of shopping and dining.

Barcelona, Spain

If you think you can afford a European trip, Barcelona might be the city for you. There are some reasonably-priced family vacation packages. Not only is it a beautiful city, it is filled with tons of fun activities for kids and adults both. There are 500+ family-friendly hotels to choose from. Plus, it can be an educational experience for teens taking Spanish classes.

These are just a few ideas to help your family get started with the plans. Make a list of places everyone wants to visit and check out family vacation packages to see what all is available.

Use online websites to do your research on these destinations as well as others. It’s easy to find affordable family vacation packages with the site’s search tools. You can also simply browse to find out what all is available right now. Don’t forget to apply online promo codes when booking your trip.

The 10 Best Places For Skiing & Snow Boarding Around Neuschwanstein Castle – Schwangau – Bavaria

How about combining your skiing or snowboarding holiday with the visit of the most popular castle in Europe: Neuschwanstein Castle? Stay at one of the boutique and luxury self-catering apartments or a rustic hotel and enjoy the view of the King’s Castles, which look stunning especially when lit at night.

And as a special bonus you can use the Royal Thermal Spa with its hot indoor and outdoor pools, its sauna and massage offers after a fun day in the mountains.

Here is a list of the best places to go skiing in and around Schwangau.

1. Tegelberg Mountain (1720m) & Wintersport Arena / Schwangau Germany

Right in Schwangau, the village of the King’s Castles Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau is the wintersport arena Tegelberg with its cable car, 4 regular lifts and flood light at night. You will enjoy 7.3 kilometres of downhill piste here as well as a separate one for tobogganing. This place is great to for beginners and intermediate skiers, has a ski school and a ski/snowboard rental facilities. Snow machines provide snow garantuee.

A special highlight is the 2km long Neuschwanstein Cross Counry Skiing Track which is lit at night…and of course skiing with “cinderella castle” in your view.

2. Buchenberg (1140m) Ski Area / Buching Germany

Only a 5 minute drive from Schangau you will find a double seater lift taking you to the top of the Buchenberg. 2 more regular lifts provide variety.

A special highlight is the 2.5km long tobogganing track right from the top of the mountain. The hut on top of the mountain provides stunning views of the lakes and the valley. This area is great for beginners and families as well as for tobogganing fans.

3. Alpspitz (1575m) Ski Arena / Nesselwang Germany

Only a 20 minutes drive away from Schwangau is the Alpspitz Ski Arena. It benefits from the longest 2km long daily floodlit piste in the region, has one cable car, a 4-seater, one 2-seater, 3 regular lifts and 2 children’s ones. This varied place provides skiing fun for advanced skiers as well as beginners and families. Ski school, ski/snowboard/tobogganing rental facilities and tobogganing areas are available and so are several excellent mountain huts for your après-ski.

Snow machines provide snow garantuee.

A special highlight here is the O’Neill Alpspitzpark, a top modern Freerider Snowboard Park with Floodlight every night from 6-9pm.

4. Breitenberg Mountain (1877m) Ski Centre / Pfronten Germany

Only a 15 minute drive away from Schwangau you will reach the Breitenberg Ski Centre with its cable car, an open 4-seater and 5 regular lifts as well as 4 children’s lifts. Nearby in Steinbach is the Snowboard fun park, the ski school as well as two more floodlit pistes.

A special highlight for the first time in winter 2009/10 is the 6.5km long tobogganing track right from the top of the mountain.

5. Hahnenkamm Ski Resort (1900m) / Reutte Austria

Only a 25 mintue drive away from Schwangau into Austria is the Hahnenkamm Ski Resort with its cable car, double seater and 5 further regular lifts. It has one of the best ski schools for adults and children. Skis and snowboards can be rented there.

6.-9. Füssener Jöchle (1821m) & Ski Arena Tannheimer Tal / Austria

There are 4 ski resorts in the Tannheimer Tal in Austria, no more than 30 minutes away from Schwangau, one of which is Füssener Jöchle in Grän. It has a cable car, a 6-seater and 3 regular lifts. The piste from the top is 3.5 kilometres long.

The other ski resorts here are Neunerköpfle / Tannheim, Schattwald and Nesselwängle.

10. Jungholz Ski Centre / Jungholz Germany

About 40 minutes away from Neuschwanstein castle is a super family friendly ski centre with two special 4-seaters for children and one training lift. For adults there are 4 regular lifts. Snow machines provide snow garantuee.

There are even more cross-country skiing/ nordic skiing opportunites which I will cover in a separate article. And if you get bored of downhill skiing, how about tryin snow-kiting, letting the wind in your kite pull you across the piste?

Best Places to Go for Late Season Ski Trips

Think ski trips will have to wait until early winter? Think again! Ski and snowboard bums who can’t wait until next winter for their snow fix still have plenty of options to choose from. In North America alone, there are about more than a handful of locations where there’s plenty of snow to go around (sans the rowdy crowd in the après ski scene).

Here are some of the ski vacation destinations that still receive (or retain) plentiful snow:

Snowbird, Utah

With 2,500 acres of skiable area and an average of 500 inches of snow (which often lasts into May), it is no wonder that Snowbird ranks 2nd in the list of best North American ski resorts. But Snowbird not only banks on its bountiful snow. The place is located just 29 miles from Salt Lake International Airport, and 24 miles from the downtown area of Salt Lake City, making it very accessible to skiers from any part of the US. The resort also boasts of a massive Aerial Tram, which could take you to as high as 11,000 feet in just 8 minutes!

Squaw Valley, California

Squaw Valley in spring time guarantees the best of both worlds for avid skiers: plenty of sunshine and tons of snow up to mid-May (depending on snow accumulation in Lake Tahoe). The resort, too, has quite a history. It played host to the VII Winter Olympic Games in 1960, and is also considered the birth place of the American Extreme Skiing Movement. And you’d be happy to know that late season means more discounts on ski passes and accommodations.

Whistler Blackcomb, British Columbia

The ski scene in Whistler and Blackcomb keeps rolling up until April, with plenty of après ski activities, parties and lots of snow to carve on. Ski or snowboard on more than 200 trails in more than 8000 acres of combined terrains.

Tip: Take the two hour drive to Whistler Blackcomb on the most romantic road in the world – the Sea to Sky Highway.

Sunshine / Banff, Alberta

On a good year, Sunshine and Banff can guarantee decent snow conditions up until mid-May, thus guaranteeing more fun on the slopes minus the crowds and the long lines to the chair lifts. The views, too, are a sight for sore eyes. Hop on the Sunshine Gondola and head out to the on Mountain Base of Sunshine Village at 7000 feet, or go to Banff down the valley where you can mingle with the friendly locals, or visit the Lake Louise Ski Resort.

Winter’s definitely not over in these destinations. So go right ahead! Pack your bags and end the season with a bang on ski trips in these destinations.