Is one of your New Year's resolutions to travel more? If so, then the UK is filled with idyllic destinations that are well worth seeing.
What better time to explore these incredible places than a New Year's road trip?
Start your year off right and take a road trip solo, with friends, or with family to some of the most beautiful locations in the UK.
North Coast 500, Scotland
Often referred to as ‘Scotland’s answer to Route 66’, the North Coast 500 showcases some of the most incredible views of the Highlands.
Starting and ending at Inverness Castle, the route takes you through lovely Scottish villages and historic landmarks.
Be sure to book your accommodation well in advance, as the route is popular with drivers everywhere.
There is the opportunity to spot dolphins and seals off Chanonry Point, and if you’re really lucky, you could even see the Northern Lights, as this area of the country is the best place to see them outside of Scandinavia.
The Lake District, Northern England
Home to the UK’s deepest lake, the Lake District holds stunning views and lakeside villages which make a perfect road trip to enjoy with your friends.
You’ll see why the Lake District attracts countless visitors – be sure to pack your camera so you can take the gorgeous views home with you.
You may wish to stop off in the village of Grasmere, where William Wordsworth wrote his poem ‘I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud’. You can take a detour to Near Sawry, which was the inspiration for Beatrix Potter’s 'Peter Rabbit'.
Grasmere is just one of the locations in the Lake Distrcit where you can hire an electric car if you're looking to reduce your carbon footprint. You can hire one from the train stations at Oxenholme, Windermere and Penrith.
You can find charging points in the Lakes at Glenridding, Grasmere and Coniston, and in Cumbria.
The Yorkshire Moors, Northern England
The North York Moors National Park is home to dense forests and meandering streams, grazing sheep and ancient drystone walls.
If you have a furry friend, the Yorkshire Moors are one of the best dog-friendly regions in the country, with hundreds of pubs and B&Bs that will be happy to accommodate pets as well as road-trippers.
If you stop in Goathland it may seem familiar – this is because it was the home for Hogsmeade Station in the Harry Potter movies.
Be sure to pack an up-to-date map though, as a satnav may not be as reliable due to the ruralness of the Moors.
The New Forest, Southern England
Originally a royal hunting ground for William the Conqueror, the New Forest is one of the most beautiful spots in Hampshire.
With winding roads through vast fields, a variety of local wildlife such as ponies, pigs, and deer, and some gorgeous B&Bs to spend the night in, the New Forest has plenty for you to see and do.
You can stop off at the Beaulieu Motor Museum and see some wonderful cars from over the years, explore the ancient seaport of Lymington, or smell the wonderful flowers at Exbury Gardens.
There are plenty of places to park up and take a walk through the forests, so pack your walking shoes.
The New Forest is a wonderful place to submerge yourself in nature.
The Cotswolds, Southern England
Through the miles of sprawling countryside and historic villages, you’ll quickly understand why the region is an Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
There is something new to see in each village, from medieval churches to pretty high streets, quaint pubs to iconic stone walls.
There’s something for everyone in The Cotswolds. Whether you want to relax with some birdwatching or wildlife spotting, or if you’re more of a thrill seeker who wants to give kayaking, paddleboarding or archery a go, this southern road trip is good fun for thrill seekers and relaxers alike.
Remember to check ahead to see if any of the wonderful beer and cider festivals coincide with your plans.
Causeway Coastal Route, Northern Ireland
We would recommend that you take four or five days for a Causeway Coastal road trip, which is perfect for the summer months.
The trip covers more than 200 miles between Belfast and Derry.
It starts on the Antrim Coast road, continuining through the nine Glens of Antrim.
You can visit the historic Carrickfergus Castle on the shores of Belfast Lough, and take a stroll along the nearby Northern Ireland Coastal route - you just might spot some sea caves and dolphins on your travels.
The Gobbins Cliff Path gives you an incredible view of County Antrim's coastline.
Further on, you can visit the striking Giant's Causeway at the foot of the basalt cliffs. This dramatic sight is one you won't want to miss.
Covering a total of 823 square miles, Eryri is the largest National Park in Wales - Eryri is the Welsh name for both the mountain and the region of Snowdonia in both Welsh and English contexts.
Millions of people visit Eryri each year to visit its beautiful valleys and peaks, as this is the perfect trip for hikers.
With 9 rocky mountain ranges, 74 miles of coastline, and 1497 miles of route to explore, there will be plenty for you to do.
See beautiful clear lakes and dense forests - you might even spot plants and insects that you won't find anywhere else in the world.
By car, you can start in the harbour town of Porthmadog on the North Wales coast. This town is home to the West Highland and Ffestiniog steam railways, and is close to the Italian-style village of Portmeirion.
You can then follow the A498 to the village of Tremadog and on through the Aberglaslyn Pass to Beddgelert.
If you keep driving, you will travel through the forest and along the banks of Llyn Dinas lake.
What Should You Consider for a Road Trip?
Before you hit the road, there are a few things you should consider to ensure the journey is as smooth as possible. Here are some things you should do in order to guarantee a successful road trip.
Plan your fuel refills in advance. Have a look online to see where you pass petrol stations, so that you don't run out of fuel.
If you are travelling with children, ensure that you have plenty of books and games packed to keep them entertained. Fully charge tablets, bring colouring books, and plan regular stops where everyone can stretch their legs and use the facilities.
You may want to put together a road trip playlist especially for the occasion.
Remember to pack snacks and an emergency kit just in case too!
A first aid kit, a high-vis, and a supply of warm clothes and water are essentials.
Plan ahead so that you can take scheduled breaks when you get tired. Book your accomodation well in advance so you always have a comfortable bed to retire to after a long day of driving.
Where would you like to go in 2024? Let us know in the comments!