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Fall plans?

A few months ago, I couldn’t resist a $700 fare from Charlotte to London for late September. I honestly didn’t have a burning desire for 2 weeks in England but I thought the odds were better that England could be safe and open in late September than France, where I really want to go. (If it turns out France is safe and open, I can easily take Eurostar over.)

I know traveling is still a question mark, but looking for travel ideas for UK. I’m a solo traveler, love the outdoors, walking (health issues may limit ability to hike long distances), scenic areas, outdoor markets ...
Open to renting car, but love train travel and don’t mind buses for day trips. I’ve spent time in Cornwall and Cotswolds and loved them. I’ve been to Bath and not interested in more than a day in London.
Thanks for any ideas!

Posted by
743 posts

Hello .
The second to last sentence might want a bit of clarity adding.

On the train front on the National Rail site there are some good value area passes.
For planning purposes the Splitticketing APP can really give some hefty savings also.
I am off on a trip soon and National Rail show the fare at £71. With Splitticket it's as low as £19 ,more generally £32, on the Same train.
The Settle to Carlisle train is likely England's grandest journey .
There's a small museum at Ribblehead station.
The nearby Station Inn does good pub food and it's an easy leg stretcher to see the famous viaduct.
Sept means the Morecombe Bay walk with guides should still be operating ( tide n weather permitting.)
There's a station there too

Posted by
240 posts

Don't underestimte EWngland - there is some stunning scenwery and areas to visit.

Try heading North! Peak District, Yorkshire dales, North York Moors, Lake District, Northumberland...

Any of these would be good and meet all your criteria. My personal choice would be Northumberland with Hadrian's Wall (some really good walking along the wall) as well as the remains of Roman Forts (don't miss the latrines at Housesteads and Vindolanda is worth a visit to watch the excavations).

There is some stunning coastline scenery with ruined castles like Dunstanburgh, the iconic Bamburgh Castle which features on all the tourist literature, Holy Island reached by tidal causeway and the centre of early Christianity. Do a boat trip to the Farne Islands.

Visit Alnwick Castle, home of the Duke of Northumberland and the wonderful garden designed by the Duchess and described as the best contemporary garden in the world. There is Cragside, the home of Victorian industrialist Sir William Armstrong and the first house to be lit by electricity (plus all sorts of other mod cons). The grounds are equally impressive as the house.

Don't miss Keilder Forest and Keilder Water with some good walking opportunities. There is also the Coquet and College Valleys and the Cheviot.

There is Newscastle for those wanting a city fix as well as many very attractive and thriving small towns - Hexham, Rothbury, Alnwick, Wooler... Don't miss Berwick on Tweed with its Eliuzabethan walls and the story of being at war with Russia (Queen Victoria signed the declaration of war on Russia in 1853, as "Victoria, Queen of Great Britain, Ireland, Berwick-upon-Tweed and the British Dominions beyond the sea." Berwick was not mentioned in the Treaty of Paris that concluded the Crimean War in 1856, leaving the town technically still at war with Russia… A peace treaty was finally signed by a Russian diplomat and the the Mayor of Berwick in 1966. As the mayor said at the time: "You can tell the Russian people that they can now sleep peacefully in their beds".)

Have a look at these three articles for some more ideas...

https://www.sloweurope.com/community/threads/northumberland-gods-own-country-part-1-overview.5646/

https://www.sloweurope.com/community/threads/northumberland-gods-own-country-part-2-hadrians-wall.5647/

https://www.sloweurope.com/community/threads/northumberland-gods-own-country-part-3-north-tyne-valley.5648/

https://www.sloweurope.com/community/threads/northumberland-gods-own-country-part-3-north-tyne-valley.5648/

Posted by
122 posts

You could always take a train up to Scotland and spend some time exploring Edinburgh, Glasgow, and maybe the highlands if you rent a car

Posted by
1180 posts

not interested in more than a day in England

Hi Shelly, if FR still hasn’t opened for tourism by Sep, will you spend all your time in Great Britain? If FR does open its borders, does this mean you’ll spend one or two nights in England? You could take the Eurostar to Paris the day of arrival.

Posted by
243 posts

As a professional editor I’m beyond embarrassed at the critical mistake I made in my original post: I meant to type “London” rather than “England” in 2nd to last sentence of post.
Regardless, I think some of you managed to read my mind. Thank you all for providing so much wonderful advice!! I actually had a trip planned in June/July 2020 to hike the Lake District and a few days watching Wimbledon, but worsening back problems are hampering my hiking these days.
I’m sorry if it sounded like I was dissing England - I didn’t mean it that way. My hiking trip in Cornwall and Cotswolds was phenomenal. It’s just that I’m addicted to France, and from a weather perspective, late September/early October wouldn’t normally be my choice for another England trip.
You’ve all given me some wonderful ideas to research further. Keep ‘em coming, please.

Posted by
743 posts

For what it's worth odds might tilt to a better than normal autumn as we are going thru the coldest spring for likely 80 years.

I would think the Coast to Coast walk would still be reasonably busy and there's a couple of bag carrying firms.
There's a very good Facebook Page with people posting there departure dates etc.
Black Sail Hut is unique place to stay in England more alpine in setting.

York is worth a couple of days ,no one has a bad word for it.
I would think there will be more festivals and events than normal as life is returning .
As a northerner ,I think one day London is plenty enough.