UK travel news

Rediscovering the wild sides of England and stargazing inspiration for Scotland


Malham Cove, Malham, Yorkshire Dales National Park

With staycations high on the agenda for 2021, and a growing desire to escape the crowds, new tour operator Wilderness England is aiming to tempt people to some of the wildest parts of the country this year.

A sister company to award-winning Wilderness Scotland and Wilderness Ireland, its adventurous holidays will focus on England’s National Parks and most remote corners, including Northumberland and the Yorkshire Dales, as well as a few across the border in Wales.

Launching with 17 holidays, there’s a mix of independent trips including self-drive itineraries and holidays exploring on foot or by bike, as well as some guided small group tours.

The collection includes escapes for individuals and bubbles, as well as the chance to build a longer trip with itineraries combining several locations.

Roasts and Rambles

If you’re looking for new walking inspiration, Visit Herefordshire has launched a special guide called Roasts and Rambles, featuring ten circular walks with at least one great pub to refuel with a roast along the way.

The list includes options for vegetarians, including root roasts and vegan desserts, while some offer local ales and cider, as well as rooms for after lockdown restrictions lift.

The routes range from four to eight miles, with the majority around five miles long; choose between looking out to the Black Mountains, wandering along the River Wye, heading into the Malvern Hills, or discovering Arthur’s Cave after a walk through woodland.

Stargazing in Scotland

While the dark nights last, make the most of them by learning to stargaze with a new guide created by Visit Scotland. Aimed at families, A Stargazer’s Guide to Scotland’s Dark Skies includes guides, videos, activities and quizzes to check your knowledge.

Scotland itself is home to several great stargazing spots, if you’re planning to pack your telescope later in the year. Galloway Forest Park was the UK’s first Dark Sky Park, where you can spot over 7,000 stars by night, or Tomintoul and Glenlivet in the Cairngorms is the most northerly Dark Sky Park in the world.

Venture off the mainland to the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides and you could also discover one of Scotland’s earliest astronomical observatories, the Calanais Standing Stones, while Shetland and Orkney are great if you’re hoping to see the Northern Lights.

Download the guide here


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