“How to travel when you're broke ”
While Cardiff is a really beautiful place, there will always come a time where you run out of things to see or do. So why not step away a little bit more and see what the UK has to offer? While most of us dream about exotic summer trips to the Bahamas, we forget the diversity and beauty available right on our own doorsteps. Catching a cheap ride on the Megabus or hopping on a train for a few hours may provide you with some lovely summer day trips, winter hikes or quiet weekends away. Here’s a list of our absolute favourites!
We’ll start with the obvious, shall we? You might as well visit London for a few days if you can afford it. If the girlfriend wants a shopping trip then leave her in Oxford Street, and see Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and the London Eye. For a thrilling eye-opener, the London Dungeons are open all year round - but be prepared to bring your overdraft on this trip! Covent Garden is beautiful for a nighttime stroll, or find cheap seats for your favourite West End show at the Theatre Ticket Booth on Leicester Square. If you’re feeling fancy, have dinner alfresco-style on Shad Themes and enjoy a view of Tower Bridge, or head to Shoreditch for a quirky night out. London is big enough to cater for any tourist, there’s so much to see and do here. Megabus tickets from Cardiff won’t set you back much either, so it would be borderline rude not to take a trip, right?
Inhabited mainly by grandparents and village families, Devon has your fair share of beaches, beautiful meadows and popular family holiday spots. Have a look at the moors, go crabbing, camping or walking along the coast. Try out Devon’s ‘cream tea’ and have a wander through the countryside for a true reflection of untouched beauty. For a busier time, Exeter and Plymouth offer all you need for nightlife or a huge shopping trip. Or perhaps for a romantic getaway, try Salcombe and a boat ride down the River Dart. You can’t ever experience the UK fully if you’ve never given Devon the time of day.
The city harbouring the oldest University in Britain, if you want an escape completely characterised by history and integrity, it’s Oxford. Whether your forte is poetry, politics, or the more popular choice of Harry Potter, there’s something here for you. You can visit Harry Potter locations where the movies were shot, or visit some of the many 17th century museums. Feel free to get on board a boat or a bus to truly explore the city’s nooks and crannies - and make sure to stop at the luxury shopping outlets, catered especially for England’s richest!
Why not go the extra mile and venture far up north to Scotland’s iconic capital? From old little alleyways with local shops and cobbled pathways to Georgian extravagance in the Edinburgh castle, you can have the most active day ever just viewing the wonders Edinburgh has to offer. Naturally, you’ll also have to drink a bit and get on the Scotch Whiskey tour! It also has amazing transport links if you’re going by train or driving up, but you may find it’s much cheaper (and quicker) to fly. Flights are frequent from Cardiff airport and can be as low as £60 return if you time it right.
Are you a fan of the Shakespearean era or simply adore cottages and churches? Shakespeare’s very birthplace can be visited as well as his resting place in the Holy Trinity Church. For more in depth history lovers, you can also view Anne Hathaway’s cottage. Or why not try out a dramatic evening at the Swan theatre’s Elizabethan stage with some fancy wine? This is a beautiful family or romantic getaway if you treasure the more cultural aspects of British life.
There’s a huge haven here for lovers of nights out and also the LGBT community. Whether you want a sophisticated cultural trip or simply a night out on the piss, Brighton has it. Make the most of the seaside and wonder the coastline, munch fish and chips on the pier or enjoy an evening performance on the Pavilion. This is a huge community for fellow vegetarians, vegans and general foodies, with a gorgeous array of independent eateries. Though a bit of a trek, Brighton makes for a lovely spring day if Tenby isn’t taking your fancy.
Every couple must have a getaway to Bath. So easily accessible from Cardiff (just over an hour train) it can easily be enjoyed as a day trip if you’re short on cash. Georgian architecture really gives this place character, and the beautiful but expensive Roman Baths with its steamy rooftop pool, is a must if you fancy splashing out on a spa day. Have a sightseeing hour and wander around Bath Abbey and the Theatre Royal, or join in the bustle of the Christmas markets in late November! Any literature lovers will enjoy the Jane Austen centre or the September festival dedicated to her work. This is one of the most gorgeous cities in the UK, and may even spur a new adoration for old Saxon architecture.
Bored of South Wales? Try the north! Conwy is utterly beautiful, boasting a picturesque river and bay which runs through the little town. ‘Britain’s smallest house’ may be located in Conwy, if you like searching for the unique. Though a four hour train ride away, this trip will offer you a slice of Welsh life which is a world away from the city lights of Cardiff. Surrounded by unchanged medieval architecture and castles, Conwy is a treasured rarity on a tourist’s agenda.
Written by Hannah Newberry, 8 months ago
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