The East of England has beautiful landscapes, refreshing fresh air and rich Roman history to explore. Here are our top 4 ‘staycation’ ideas for the region.
Fresh air and history are Cambridge’s two main appeals. King’s College Chapel is unmissable but you should see the rest of the 13th Century University as well. The architecture has stood the test of time and has made the University one of the most famous in the world. Book a guided tour for the best experience.
With an exceptional Botanical Garden to explore and river cruises and bike tours available, there’s no need for four wheels in Cambridge. The best way to explore the city is on foot or by bike – including the self-guided treasure hunts which let you explore the city and keep the kids entertained at the same time. Once you’re finished exploring, choose one of the many exceptional restaurants for a fine dining experience.
What else can you do on your ‘staycation’ in Cambridge?
If you get tired of walking, jump back in the car and drive down to Southend-on-Sea. It may be an hour and a half away, but the sea views and fish and chips at the other end are certainly worth it.
Also visit Bletchley Park to see where Alan Turning and his team cracked the Enigma Code during WW2. Although the exhibit is currently shut, nearby Milton Keynes is a great day out. Gulliver’s Land Theme Park is perfect for kids aged 2-13 but is only open on the weekends, so plan ahead!
Even without the stunning appeal of the famous White Cliffs, there’s plenty to see and do in Dover. The town centre has a great choice of local shops and restaurants to tempt everyone, but the real draw is the Kentish countryside. You can explore it both on foot or bike, and your age or ability doesn’t matter. There are also a range of guided tours to help you learn about the rich history of Dover.
Dover Museum and Castle are also well worth visiting when they re-open to the public later this year.
What else can you do on your ‘staycation’ in Dover?
The historic cathedral city of Canterbury and the seaside resort of Margate are both around half an hour away. The Isle of Sheppey is also a great natural escape and allows you to explore the relative wilderness of a National Nature Reserve. Plus, the Kent Downs is a sprawling Area of Natural Beauty, covering well over 50 miles – perfect for longer hikes.
Lincoln is an incredibly historic city and, while many of its museums are still closed, you can still see the Cathedral and Castle from the outside. Plus, there’s a digital Roman trail on a downloadable app to help you learn about the city while you explore it on foot.
Lincoln has plenty of open spaces and free activities to keep your ‘staycation’ fun on a budget. Visit Steep Hill, home to a range of independent businesses and one of the steepest hills in the UK, or one of the beautiful country parks. Hartshome Country Park is a 200 acre oasis in the centre of the city while Hill Holt Wood has 34 acres of beautiful wildflowers and wildlife further outside the city. Finally, explore the Water Rail Way. It links Lincoln and Boston with sculptures inspired by Lord Tennyson lining the route.
What else can you do on your ‘staycation’ in Lincoln?
You’re not far from Nottingham and Sherwood Forest, the alleged home of Robin Hood. Explore the woods he supposedly walked and learn more about the legend itself.
Head towards the coast to visit Skegness or Cleethorpes, two popular resort towns. Relax on the beach or in the amusement arcade and enjoy a great day by the sea. You can also visit Grimsby for some of the finest seafood in the country and witness the famous fishing industry hard at work.
This highly recommended UK ‘staycation’ is incredibly Social Media worthy. Explore the pretty architecture and winding streets to find that perfect snap. You can go it alone or choose a guided bus or walking tour to avoid getting lost. If you’re looking for a fright, Norwich has a range of ghastly ghost tours throughout the year. Plus, it’s one of the top 10 places to shop in the UK thanks to its range of independent businesses. It’s the perfect city for a chilled out UK ‘staycation’!
What else can you do on your ‘staycation’ in Norwich?
The beautiful coastal town of Great Yarmouth is nearby. This popular tourist spot will satisfy all your ice cream, fish and chips and beach needs! You can also visit historic Ipswich and Colchester (both around 1 and a half hours away), or the Suffolk and Norfolk coasts. These Areas of Natural Beauty have diverse, scenic landscapes and protected species and secluded beaches to find.
The Norfolk Coast is also a beautiful driving route. Just keep the coast on your left out of King’s Lynn and head all the way along to Great Yarmouth. That way, you get to see the very best of this county.
Drew works for BookMyGarage writing blogs, website content and almost everything else in between. He works closely with ex-mechanics and subject matter experts. When he’s not helping you save money on running your car or making your driving life easier, he can be found either with his head in a book or with a golf club in his hands (usually looking for his ball in the woods)