From 25th March to 2nd April 2017, we’re all officially invited to celebrate England - it's the English Tourism Week! The English Tourism Week happens every spring and it aims to highlight the value of tourism in the country. It sees businesses and residents alike getting involved with special events and activities from heritage walking tours in period costumes to little farmers markets selling local cheeses and produce. According to Visit Britain, the visitor economy is worth mind-blowing £106 billion annually, supporting a wide range of industries from farming to theatre. With the weather feeling decidedly spring-like these days it's the perfect time to plan a little holiday, book cheap train tickets, explore some of my favourite heritage short break spots in England and participate in this week-long celebration!
WHAT ARE THE BEST SPOTS TO VISIT DURING THIS YEAR'S ENGLISH TOURISM WEEK?
Bath is a city brimming with history, from its striking architecture to its most popular attractions. A visit wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the Roman Baths, one of the most beautifully-preserved ancient Roman spas in the world. Another must-see is Bath Abbey, an impressive medieval church with a breath-taking view (although you have to climb up the 212 steps to see it!). While you’re there, take a stroll past the Royal Crescent and observe the grandeur of some of the best Georgian architecture in the country. Pop into No.1 Royal Crescent, the museum dedicated to imagining what life was like in one of these historic residences from 1776-1796. If you’re a Jane Austen fan, visiting the Jane Austen Centre is a must. There you can learn more about the genius behind so many classics.
For gorgeous coasts, scenic countryside and unique places steeped in England’s heritage, go to Norfolk. Whether you’re after a city break or a weekend in the country, Norfolk has a bit of everything. The city of Norwich, which was named England’s first (and only) UNESCO City of Literature in 2012, has a wealth of attractions to explore – from the cobbled streets of Elm Hill to the medieval history of Norwich Castle. Norwich also boasts some of the country’s best shopping: The Royal Arcade has quirky shops as well as delicious places to graba bite to eat. Norfolk is home to some truly majestic country estates: Blickling Estate in Aylsham and the Queen’s country estate in Sandringham are two of the area’s most impressive attractions and are perfect for a day trip.
For the perfect blend of a city break and a seaside getaway, Brighton is the place for you. Explore the Royal Pavilion with its intriguing Eastern-influenced architecture. Enjoy mouth-watering fish and chips on the beach – with a stunning sea view that never gets old. Shop in the eclectic North Laines and support locally-owned businesses – from record shops to frozen yoghurt parlours. In addition, Brighton Pier will delight all ages with rides, arcade games, and booths galore. You can also enjoy a meandering walk along the South Downs National Park, especially around Devil’s Dyke (a sweeping valley just five miles north of Brighton) – for trails and hike suggestions, click here.
🇬🇧 The Lake District
The Lake District has been a holiday destination for hundreds of years, made famous by its picturesque scenery and prominence in classic literature. Located in Cumbria in north-west England, it is also home to the country’s highest mountain Scafell Pike. Derwentwater, one of the main lakes in the Lake District, is located just south of the quaint village of Keswick. This gorgeous little retreat is the ideal place to book a cosy bed and breakfast and enjoy a meal at one of the local pubs. Another popular feature of this beautiful area is Lake Windermere: at over 10 miles long, it is the country’s longest lake. Take a leisurely cruise on the lake – or hire a boat and do the cruising yourself. No matter what you decide to do, you are guaranteed to see truly unparalleled scenery!
York, located in the north of England, is another city not to miss. Drink in the Gothic architecture of the Minster and Clifford’s Tower, or learn about the city’s Viking past at the Jorvik Viking Centre. There are also plenty of lovely walks to take: around the city walls (confusingly called ‘gates’), through the Museum Gardens, or along the River Ouse, which passes through the city.
York is also the ultimate destination for ale enthusiasts: the 2016 York Beer Census confirmed there are over 300 unique real ales on sale within the city – including tasty offerings from the city’s own York Brewery – and there is an equally impressive number of pubs to match.
From picnics on the beach in Brighton to lakeside hikes around Keswick, there are plenty of activities to plan in time for English Tourism Week!Follow
What are your favourite places to see & events to attend during the English Tourism Week?