Staycation: top 10 UK holiday destinations of 2021

With Portugal back on the amber list and seemingly no exotic escape for us this year, a staycation is looking all the more likely. Whilst not quite the holiday any of us had in mind, perhaps there’s more to the UK than meets the eye…

Forget the overrated staycation spots of Cornwall, Scotland and the Lakes, and instead turn your sights to some of the UK’s lesser-known nooks and crannies. I give to you: the official top 10 UK staycations of 2021.

10. Cardiac Hill

Narrowly pipping Croydon to the post, coming in at number 10 is Durham’s very own Cardiac Hill. Perhaps more one for the adrenaline junkies amongst us, Cardiac Hill is up there with the likes of Ben Nevis, Mont Blanc and Kilimanjaro, and is not to be underestimated. Experts recommend a four-week training programme to prepare for the titanic feat, and advise taking an experienced hiker along with you.

9. ‘God’s Own County’

Whilst undeniably a county, most definitely not God’s own, and certainly not better than Lancashire, Yorkshire is the godforsaken place for you if you like sheep, rain, and a shameful lack of butter pies. It’s your choice, but we’d personally go for Lancashire.

8. The DSU

Classy, timeless and grandiose, the Durham Students’ Union building is undoubtedly the architecture that put Durham on the map. If cruises are for you, then we’re certain you’ll love a week in the SU; a multi-storey, indistinct shape looming through the mist with on-board dining, proximity to water and, most importantly, a bar, the similarities really are endless. Tickets are selling fast, so get yours now to avoid (even more) disappointment.

Image: Gareth Milner on Flickr with license.

7. Mum’s back garden

Upmarket, affordable and close to home, camping in your mum’s back garden really is a hidden gem all too often overlooked. For best results, invest in a £10 tent from Aldi and come crawling back inside when it inevitably rains and the tent leaks.

6. The Billy B

Already well known for its weekend getaways during summative season, the Billy B is once again opening its doors over summer to those of us who simply can’t stay away. Boasting a whole host of holiday perks including toasties, – well, just toasties actually, but they really are scrummy – the Billy B is well worth a trip this summer.

5. Blackpool

If unruly seagulls, pollution and underwhelming sights are for you, then get yourself on a train to Blackpool, pronto (panto?). While you’re there, I’d recommend a trip to see the Eiffel tower’s weird younger cousin that no one talks about. Alternatively, climb to the top of your stairs with a bag of chips – it’s probably just as impressive.

*Sun not included. Image: Emyr Jones on Flickr with license.

4. ‘The Tent’

Already globally established as a World Heritage Site, ‘The Tent on the Racecourse’ is probably about as close as we’re going to get to being abroad this year. With events all term round and architecture as awesome as the Colosseum, ‘The Tent’ truly is a sight to behold.

3. Preston

As a proud Prestonian, I can safely say that Preston is by far one of the worst places to visit in the UK. We do, however, have a few claims to fame. The first is that Preston is home to the UK’s first-ever KFC – exciting, I know. The second is that Benjamin Franklin once ‘briefly’ lived there, before (quite understandably) making a hasty exit to America. And that’s it, that’s all we have to offer. Even so, still better than Yorkshire.

2. The Swan

In the famous last words of Ed from Shaun of the Dead, in times of crisis we need to hole up somewhere familiar. This rings true for no place other than The Swan; familiar, safe, and a guaranteed good pint. What’s more, for the nature-lovers amongst us, this year The Swan is offering a safari experience* like never before – go to the bar for more information about what could be your chance to see The Swan’s  three secretive cygnets.

Image: Adam Bruderer on Flickr with license.

*for best results the safari should be experienced when 8 pints in. 

1. Birmingham

Voted the most boring town in the UK, Birmingham really is something of a dark horse. I’m not sure why exactly, and genuinely can’t think of a single good reason to visit, but take my word for it – it’s a place like no other and you will, most definitely, be disappointed.


Featured image: Simon Felton on Flickr with license

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