11 of the best waterparks in the UK
Okay, we’re calling it summer already. Bust out the swim shorts, pump up the armbands, dust off the rubber ring and get ready for some seriously fun sploshing, splashing and, erm, splishing. The best waterparks in the UK are guaranteed fun whatever the weather.Slides are universally adored, right? Even if they aren’t, the variety on offer in the UK’s waterparks is impressive enough. Why not go on some sort of waterpark-influenced mega road trip around the country? We’ve heard worse ideas. Don’t forget your towel. RECOMMENDED:🏊 The best outdoor swimming pools in the UK🚗 The best road trips in the UK🪂 The best extreme outdoor activity breaks in the UK🚴 The most beautiful bike trails in the UK🏖️ The most stunning hidden beaches in the UK
The 13 best castles in the UK
The UK and castles go together like magnet and steel. This collection of grand estates across the land has long been home to the characters that flood period dramas on an annual basis, and the importance of the estates means they have been looked after incredibly well. As such, they have become one of the UK’s most enduring tourist attractions. With all that in mind, take a moment to imagine your perfect castle. What does that grand mansion look like? Would you plump for a dramatic clifftop location, standing protectively over a gorgeous beach? Maybe you’re more into the battle-weary wear and tear of the old drawbridge and moat combination? Castles come in all shapes and sizes in these parts, truly offering something for everyone, although the majesty of these spots should really ensure that they tick all visitor boxes. Heck, you can even stay in some of them. The relationship towns and cities have with these castles is far more fascinating than one might initially assume. There is pride in the grandeur and aesthetics, but the political implications of their construction might cause some locals to bristle. It adds another thrilling element to travel throughout the UK, accentuating the magnificent views and tangible history of the buildings themselves. These are the very best castles that the United Kingdom has to offer. RECOMMENDED:✨ The most magical places in the UK🎨 The most colourful places in the UK and Ireland🏰 The best castles in the UK💜 The best lavender fields i
The best wellbeing breaks and yoga retreats in the UK
In the immortal words of Tom Haverford and Donna Meagle; “treat yo self”. Taking care of body and mind is all sorts of important in the chaos of the modern world. What better way than by stripping it all back and enjoying the best wellbeing breaks and yoga retreats in the UK? All you have to do is turn up and let logic do the rest. Wellness is a very malleable term, but we can all agree that it means something to make everything just a little bit better. Whether that means a digital detox, meditation, visiting haunted places or even walking around Wales, it doesn’t matter. What wellness is to you, wellness is to you. The world is a chaotic place, and it has never been more important to treat yo self. Here are seven gorgeous wellbeing retreats for absolute peace in body and mind. RECOMMENDED:💕 The best romantic weekend getaways in the UK☕ Tiny, cosy cottages you can book in the UK🌳 11 incredible treehouses you can book in the UK🪂 The best extreme outdoor activity breaks in the UK🏞️ The most beautiful national parks in the UK
Incredible UK buildings where you can stay the night
Missing museum lates and pottering around old manor houses? Well – now that holidays are allowed again – here’s how to get your fix while escaping the city. Across the UK there are some incredible buildings that you can stay the night in. You don't just gawp at the antique furniture, you can put your feet up and pretend you live the life of an absolute baller. Why stay in a hotel when you could wake up in a fairytale folly or a library with rooms? From towers on the Dorset coastline to a poet’s retreat in the lush countryside of the Lake District, here are the best buildings across the UK where you can stay over. RECOMMENDED: 🏰 Amazing UK castles you can actually stay in🤏 Tiny but perfectly formed UK hideaways🌹 The best romantic weekend getaways in the UK🌳 Amazing treehouses in the UK you can actually stay in⛰️ Outdoorsy UK getaways to help you reconnect with nature
The 14 best things to do in Stratford-upon-Avon
Whilst it is undeniably one for the history buffs, there is plenty for all in Stratford-upon-Avon. The market town in England was the birthplace of Shakespeare, which is why our list of best things to do naturally includes plenty of attractions related to its most famous inhabitant. Catch a show by the eminent Royal Shakespeare Company at one of its theatres or visit some of the well-preserved buildings whose very walls tell the story of the Bard’s life and death. There are also plenty of non-Shakespearean delights to round off a stay in this quaint Tudor town, like modern museums, peaceful boat trips along the Avon, and even a gin distillery (that does, admittedly, take inspiration from the Bard). So, what to see, and what not to see? That is the question…
12 brilliant things to do in North Berwick
Around 30 minutes from the centre of Edinburgh, North Berwick has long been a popular getaway for the city’s residents. But in recent years, the seaside town has garnered attention from much further afield – and with beauty, fun and adventure all within easy reach, what’s not to love? Get your fix of wildlife and outdoorsy exploration, chill out on one of the picutre-postcard beaches or head to a swanky new restaurant or café for a bite. Here are the best things to do in North Berwick right now. RECOMMENDED: The best things to do in Glasgow, Royal Deeside and Oban
12 flower-filled day trips from London
We’re lucky to have so many parks and green spaces on our doorstep in London. But if you’ve visited Kew Gardens more times than you can count, and the sellers at Columbia Road flower market know you by name, perhaps it’s time to venture further afield to get your floral kicks. Fortunately, day trips from London are back on the cards again. Under the UK’s lockdown easing roadmap, we can travel out of our local area, and overnight stays in self-contained accommodation (including Airbnbs and campsites) are allowed. From May 17 we should be able to stay in hotels, hostels and B&Bs, too. That means we can explore everything from rambling rose gardens and exotic glasshouses to woodland walks and PYO flower farms. Here’s all the inspiration you need to start planning your next blooming beautiful day trip that will bring out your inner floriculturist (oh, and they’ll make amazing Instagram fodder too…). Please note: Facilities and businesses in the towns and villages we mention will be closed at the moment. Please be mindful of the people who live locally. If you decide to travel, check whether car parks are open before you set off and adhere to social distancing guidelines on your visit. RECOMMENDED: The best day trips from London
13 things to do in Dedham
With its quaint, pretty-in-pastel High Street, cute tea shops and charming churches, this littlevillage in Essex is a quintessential countryside escape from the city. But what makes it extraspecial is the surrounding Dedham Vale. Officially an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it’s also known as ‘Constable Country’, after the artist John Constable who made the gorgeous, rural area famous with his paintings. RECOMMENDED: Visit nearby Lavenham, Aldeburgh or Cambridge.
London’s best jewellery shops
Whether you’re browsing to – whisper it – pop the question, shopping for a special gift, or treating yourself to something sparkly on pay day, London has a wealth of jewellery shops beyond Hatton Garden where you can get starry-eyed over that perfect piece. From timeless blue-box classics to quirky, indie boutiques, our round-up guide is a jewellery-lover’s best friend... RECOMMENDED: The best shops in London
A perfect weekend in the north east Highlands
Catch the Caledonian Sleeper to Inverness to feel a world away from London. The Highlands are made for a four-wheeled adventure, and the North Coast 500 is Scotland’s answer to Route 66. Hugging the coast, the road checks off rainbow-laced lochs, deserted beaches and castles. It’s remote, but you won’t mind a patchy signal or sudden downpours when you’re passing through some of the UK’s most atmospheric scenery.
10 wild escapes from London for getting back to nature
Ah, the call of the wild. It’s hard to put into words that feeling you get when you’re staring out at the sea or listening to birdsong… or watching a TV show narrated by David Attenborough. In London, we’re lucky enough to have plenty of lush spaces, parks and woodlands to give you that green fix during the week, but to truly leave the city behind you have to head further afield. Getting back to nature isn’t just good for the ’gram either, it improves your mood and can help relieve stress, too. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to embrace nature that don’t involve wellies or pitching up somewhere bleak with a flimsy tent in tow. From foraging courses to wildlife-spotting weekends, here’s how to go au naturale and escape the city for the weekend. RECOMMENDED: The best weekend breaks from London
The 11 best things to do in Essex
Forget any preconceptions you have about this English county: there are so many fun things to do in Essex. This varied area begins on the urban fringes of London at one end and blends into rural Suffolk countryside at the other. Then there’s the 350 miles of coast, 35 islands, two international airports (Stansted and Southend) and the oldest recorded town in Britain. From nature and nightclubs to seaside attractions and historical monuments, first-time visitors might be surprised by just how diverse this county is. The only way is—you guessed it—Essex. Done something on this list and loved it? Share it with the hashtag #TimeOutDoList and tag @TimeOutEverywhere. Find out more about how Time Out selects the very best things to do all over the world.
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Spa at Mandarin Oriental
The regal façade of the Mandarin Oriental hotel looks out over Harrods, and with its location just a stone’s throw from Knightsbridge tube, this is well and truly the posh part of town. Uniformed doormen greet you and whisk you down to the spa, where you’ll swap your shoes for sandals while sipping complimentary tea. So far, so five-star, and that’s all before you’ve even donned a fluffy white robe. Serene, dimly-lit and beautiful, this place feels a world away from London. It looks pristine: a result, no doubt, of careful restoration (a fire closed the spa just a few days after its first opening). You’ll find all the facilities you’d expect at a luxury hotel spa – pool, relaxation area and fitness centre – but it’s the thoughtful and modern touches that set the Mandarin Oriental apart, like the padded jewellery tray in each locker and a chance to try out those fancy Dyson hair-dryers in the changing rooms. There’s also a full menu of luxurious treatments, ranging from those taking advantage of traditional Chinese medicine to a range of potent Nescens anti-aging facials. After 50 minutes with my attentive therapist – and an acid peel, lymphatic drainage and a facial massage to boot – I emerged with actual cheekbones, a Kardashian-worthy jawline and a glow that lasted all week.
Swap the city for a suspended sphere in the woods
Need a break from London? Try dangling from a Cornish tree trunk instead. This quirky little sphere, in a secluded spot at the southern end of Bodmin Moor, is more pod than traditional treehouse. It’s suspended between two trees like a tiny wooden Death Star. Simply ascend the staircase to reach the hanging globe (aka your new bedroom). The cedar-clad ball looks lightweight, and it is, but you needn’t worry about crashing down to earth: the pod uses early zeppelin engineering and can support huge weights (so don’t hold back on those local pasties). The wood burner keeps you snug in winter, and the double-glazed windows frame woodland and river views. From your lofty vantage point, enjoy the peace and keep your eyes peeled for deer, kingfishers and even the occasional otter. It’s a bucolic bubble. Lost Meadow Treepod, Cornwall. From £200 for two nights. Like the look of this woodland escape? Check out our pick of amazing treehouses you can actually stay in Need more reasons to leave London? Read our guide to the best day trips from London