The East of England

'East of England' in white text over a tree-lined river on a sunny day

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.

 

Cambridge (Cambridgeshire)

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.

 

covered stone bridge across River with stone buildings on the right and green park on the left, Cambridge, UK
The Bridge of Sighs in Cambridge is one of the most instantly recognisable sights in the city. It is a Grade 1 listed building and was, supposedly, Queen Victoria’s favourite spot in Cambridge. (Photo by Jean-Luc Benazet on Unsplash

 

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.

 

Looking up at stone columned building under clear blue sky in Cambridge, UK
The treasure trove that is the Fitzwilliam Museum may be currently closed, but that doesn’t stop you admiring the Greek-inspired columns! (Photo by Lāsma Artmane on Unsplash)

 

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.

 

Room of old computer with red panels on back wall at Bletchley Park, Cambridgeshire, UK
Visit the National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park when it re-opens to see how computing has developed over the last century. (Photo by Alex Motoc on Unsplash)

 

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!

 

Get to your ‘staycation’ destination safely with our Roadmap out of Lockdown

 

Dover (Kent)

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.

 

the white cliffs of Dover, Kent, UK
Be sure to take a long walk atop the majestic White Cliffs, made famous by Dame Vera Lynn during WW2. (Photo by Dan Senior on Unsplash

 

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 (Lincolnshire)

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 city centre with Cathedral as focus on clear sunny day with snow covering the ground and house tops
Lincoln Cathedral truly dominates the landscape, making it easy to navigate your way back to the city centre if you get lost! (Photo by matthew Feeney on Unsplash

 

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.

 

metal statue of man holding bow and arrow with stone wall and green trees in background
Is this statue of Robin Hood really accurate? Find out more about the legend and decide for yourself on your ‘staycation’ in Nottingham! (Photo by Steve Harvey on Unsplash

 

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.

 

Norwich (Norfolk)

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’!

 

Cobbled street in Norwich, Norfolk, UK at night with red street lamps lighting the houses eerily
Beautiful cobbled streets are easy to find in Norwich – make sure you share your stunning snaps with on Social Media! (Photo by Chris Spalton on Unsplash)

 

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.

 

Book your Roadmap out of Lockdown now

Drew Hickman

Drew Hickman

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)