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United Kingdom Tours, Vacations & Experiences


  • Westminster Bridge
  • Glasgow
  • The Globe Theatre
  • Cardiff Bay
  • Millennium Bridge

England and Scotland

England may be expected to be familiar on arrival if never visited before. Certainly the language is a common factor. However, for a small area of land, it is packed with so much variety that it will take time to discover just a small number of unexpected delightful attractions resulting in a yearning to return again and again on a United Kingdom vacation.

The ‘Royal” aspect expresses itself physically through the palaces and other residences of the royal family. This is one of the biggest attractions for visitors.  Idyllic villages, wild moorland, castles, country houses, cathedral spires, the ubiquitous inn or pub, crashing waves against the shoreline which surround the country and the “Englishness” of the people (a vast subject on its own). All exist certainly and the list goes on. 

All of the above is definitely to be found on a UK vacation.  However, because the world comes to England, and especially London, this has left its mark on the overall culture, cuisine and the citizens. 


England can be divided most generally into three sections, with deep historical and linguistic roots for each of them. These can be further divided into regions, which in turn consist of counties most of which also have long histories.  Starting with London, the capital city of both England and the United Kingdom, it is a global capital of finance, fashion, entertainment and culture.  You will find the rest of England to be very different, if you only visit London you haven’t “seen England”.  However, because distances are short, you can easily take day excursions to a number of iconic places such as Windsor, Oxford and Cambridge, Brighton, Stratford upon Avon and many others while on a UK vacation package. 

In London, the list of attractions is unending. Consider Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, the many beautiful and serene parks all centrally located, a cruise on the River Thames, concerts and performances, the theatre, clubs, amazing museums and art galleries, dining at your choice of restaurant, having a drink at a pub dating back hundreds of years and so much more. 

Outside of London, travelling northward is the Midlands. Perhaps, the name does not conjure up the charm of other regions in England but almost every metropolitan area has something historical or cultural to offer on a United Kingdom vacation. An example of this is Georgian Stamford of which the author, George Elliot waxed lyrically. 

The North has its own distinct character, be it the people or the countryside. Industrial cities live side by side with the wildest and most provocative countryside imaginable. Three areas that epitomize this are the Lake District with its pastoral charm and homage to the poet, Wordsworth, the Yorkshire Dales, home of the Bronte sisters and the North Yorkshire Moors, home of the renowned James Herriot stories.

Other significant places to include on your list while  on an England vacation are Devon and Cornwall with their rustic charm and beautiful coastlines (don’t miss out on the untamed National Parks of Dartmoor and Exmoor), the Cotswold’s, possibly representing  the essence of the English countryside, the many cathedral cities of Canterbury, York, Salisbury, Lincoln, Gloucester,  Ely, Winchester etc., the Spa towns such as Bath and Harrogate, and the multitude of beach resorts which are dotted around the lengthy attractive coastline.

England has often been stereotyped as being cold, grey and, but this is not entirely accurate. Temperatures rarely get very cold or very hot, and while the country certainly gets rain, it is really not as wet as rumour has it. London alone has lower annual rainfall than Paris, New York and Sydney, and it's not uncommon for parts of the country to go without rain for weeks. Winter and Fall are usually the wettest seasons when the weather is often very changeable and at times quite windy. However, be prepared for unsettled weather at any time of the year and make sure to check the weather forecast if you plan to be outdoors on an England vacation. 

Traditional English dishes still exist such as bread and cheese (ploughman’s lunch), roasts, game pies, oxtail soup and both fresh and seawater fish. Other meals, such as fish and chips, which were once urban street food eaten from newspaper with salt and malt vinegar, and pies and sausages with mashed potatoes, onions, and gravy, are now matched in popularity by curries from the Indian subcontinent, and stir-fries based on Chinese and Thai cuisines. French cuisine and Italian cuisine are also now widely adapted. 

Whatever your interests, England will offer it to you. From energetic pastimes such as hiking or walking to cultural pursuits such as the theatre, museums, art galleries and historical sites, England has it all while on a UK vacation.

 

Scotland

Scotland is a part of the United Kingdom and occupies the northern third of Great Britain  sharing a border with England.  It is home to around 800 small islands some of the most noteworthy being the Isles of Shetland and Orkney, the Hebrides, Arran and Skye. It is a country of magnificent mountains, atmospheric glens, dramatic coastlines, picturesque lochs (lakes) and rivers.  Scotland’s scenery has a reputation for being among the most spectacular in the World. It is also a land of national parks, castles, hilltop forts, monuments and sites of bloody battles, all to be experienced on Scotland vacations. 

Scottish wildlife is abundant including red deer, pine marten, otters and a host of birds of prey as well as sea mammals, such as dolphins, porpoises and whales. You will be amazed, too by the stunning sight of leaping salmon on Scotland’s many fish-rich rivers. Scotland is home to some 500,000 deer and 1,000 golden eagles.

English is the main language spoken in Scotland, although you will be surprised by the wide range of different accents and dialects spoken across the country. The ancient Celtic language of Gaelic is still spoken.  Scotland is proud to maintain its indigenous tongue as a part of the Scottish language. 

Everyone knows the stereotypical notions of traditional Scottish far such as haggis, porridge and whisky, but beef, venison and seafood are also excellent.  Two other iconic Scottish items are the Kilt with its representative designs based on the many traditional clans from the past and the bagpipes. There is nothing more stirring than to listen to a parade of pipers marching down the road or hear them playing at the annual Edinburgh Military Tattoo while on tripsa to Scotland. 

Scotland is a haven for walkers of all aspirations from lakeside strolls to long-distance waymarked routes such as the West Highland Way and the Southern Upland Way as well as high-level mountain hikes for the more adventurous. The highest point in the UK is Ben Nevis at 1344 metres/4370 feet. Indeed, Scotland is renowned for offering a wealth of outdoors adventure pursuits such as white-water rafting on fast-flowing rivers, gorge walking, canoeing or sea kayaking.  In winter, there are five excellent ski centres.

Scotland is recognized worldwide as the home of golf with International standard courses such as St. Andrews, Gleneagles and Troon.  Fishing is also a sought after pastime here.

Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and the third largest city in the UK located on the River Clyde. In recent years, Glasgow has been awarded the European titles of City of Culture. The city has transformed itself from being the once mighty powerhouse of industrial Britain to a centre for commerce, tourism, and culture. Glasgow was the host city for the Commonwealth Games in 2014. Visitors will find a revitalized city centre, the best shopping outside London, excellent parks and easy access to the Highlands and Islands. As befits a city that was at its richest throughout the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th, the centre of Glasgow has a fine legacy of Victorian and Edwardian buildings to mbe seen on Scotland vacations.

Edinburgh is rich in associations with the past and has many historical buildings including Edinburgh Castle, built high on a rocky hill overlooking the city and Holyrood Palace. Its Old Town and New Town are jointly listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also home to the world famous Edinburgh Festival of the Arts. 

The Highlands of Scotland contain some stunning scenery including mountains, lakes and rugged coastline on Scotland tours.  Some of the best known destinations are Loch Ness (of monster fame), beautiful Loch Lomond and the majestic Cairngorm Mountains and National Park.

 

Extend your Stay

Consider an additional stopover to your United Kingdom vacation on one of Goway's other European tours. You can allso choose from  a  Paris vacation or an Amsterdam vacation. This can be done stopping over en route to or from the United kingdom.

 

 

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