Rolling hills and lake-filled valleys, winding lanes and thatched villages, ancient history and glorious architecture...
England is a country bursting with culture and countryside appeal. Travellers with a thirst for history will be pushed for time when it comes to choosing which sites to visit - are you after Stone Age forts, Roman walls, Medieval villages, Georgian palaces or Victorian ingenuity? It's all here. For the adventurous, the varied English landscape lends itself perfectly to a huge array of activities. Take in glorious views as you walk or cycle through the Cotswolds, wake yourself up wild swim off the Cornish coast, or take a paddleboard or a canoe up the river to a quintessential English pub...
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Best things to do in England
Everyone has an picture in their mind's eye of quintessential England, and there are some key things that are on most bucket lists... To help flesh yours out, here are our top three things to do while on holiday in England.
Visit a traditional country pub
English pubs are often the community hub for the homes around it, be that in a Cotswold village or a suburb of London. Everyone has their "local", and you will usually find a few regulars propping up the bar and gossiping with the publican. There's very little better than going for a walk through the countryside, planning your route to finish up at a village pub with a pint of the local ale and a well-earned plate of ham, egg and chips.
Experience the great British coastline
You may not immediately think "beach holiday" when you think of England, but the coastline is one of the highlights of visiting the country. For glorious white sand beaches and coastal cliff walks head to Cornwall, where the British locals flock in summertime. For beautiful pebble beaches and the chance to bag yourself a fossil, set off for the Jurassic Coast in Dorset. But don't limit yourself to these stretches alone - the whole British coastline is quite simply something special.
Visit the Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty
Again, this isn't something that necessarily leaps to your mind when you think of what to do in England, but if you have even the slightest love of beautiful scenery, then take a tour of the most breathtaking landscapes the English countryside has to offer. The Yorkshire Dales and the Peak District offer vast craggy views and bucolic valleys in the north while the Cotswolds and the Mendips have perfect chocolate box villages and lush farmland in the southwest.
Best time to go to England
England is a year round destination, and the best time to go is largely dictated by what you want to do while you're there.
Spring (March - May) is a gorgeous time to explore England. It brings fresh temperatures (around 10 - 15 degrees celsius) with the promise of summer's warmth felt on sunny days. The weather can be showery, but the countryside is bursting to life with wildflowers and baby animals from late-March or April through to June.
Summertime (June - August) can reach highs of 30 degrees celsius but the average temperature is more likely to be a comfortable 20 - 25 degrees. This is a wonderful, green time of year, with the least amount of rainfall. Because of this, it is one of the most popular times to visit the United Kingdom. The British school summer holidays (covering most of August) also mean popular hotspots, such as Cornwall and the coastal areas, can be busy so it's a good idea to plan ahead for a summer vacation.
Autumn (September - November) is one of the most photogenic times of year in England. As the trees turn, the countryside becomes a glorious symphony of golds and greens. Good waterproof boots are advisable if you plan to explore the landscapes at this time of year. While you can expect some rain, you could also experience crisp, frosty sunny days that are arguably more spectacular than the most sunny days in summer. Temperatures average from 7 - 14 degrees celsius.
Winter (December - February) is the coldest and wettest time of year in England with temperatures averaging around 0 - 5 degrees celsius. At higher altitudes, snow can fall in large quantities meaning it's not the best time of year for hill walking. However, the local pubs and eateries come into their own at this time of year, with roaring fires, hearty food and twinkling lights giving you (to steal a Scandinavian phrase) a wonderful sense of "hyyge".
While there are some months with far drier weather than others, it's always worth bearing in mind that this is England... and packing a rain coat is always sensible.
What to read or watch before you visit England
Reading books or watching TV shows or films are a great way to get a feel for a destination. Here's what we recommend enjoying before your visit to England.
"Notes from a Small Island: Journey through Britain" by Bill Bryson
This is a humorous account of travel writer Bill bryson's experiences from his time spent exploring the UK. Enjoy his tales, taking you from Exeter right the way up to John O' Groats!
"Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen
If you want to explore the grand houses of the English aristocracy, then get yourself into the right mindset by sitting down to ready this true English classic romance.
"Poldark" televised by the BBC
Feast your eyes on the coastal glories of Cornwall in this period drama. Within one or two episodes, all you'll want to do is gallop a horse along the coastal paths and paddle in the pristine bays.
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Do you already have an idea of what your dream holiday in England entails? Whether you're ready to book or would like your ideas to be fined-tuned into something more, send an enquiry and our trusted local experts will design your perfect tailor-made holiday.