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Enjoy a compelling glimpse into the epic history of Stirling and its surrounding area by going back in time at Stirling Castle, the National Wallace Monument, and the Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre. Then explore other family-friendly attractions and the vibrant, independent boutiques around the Old Town and the Victorian Stirling Arcade. And be sure to budget time to visit majestic Loch Lomond – Britain’s largest body of water – and the Trossachs National Park, just a short ride away.
A short distance from Edinburgh is a landscape strewn with sturdy hill forts, ancient castles and ruined abbeys that hints at the tumult of the past. It's quite at odds with the picturesque rolling, if windswept, sheep-studded hills and quiet valleys that make all seem agreeably placid to today’s visitor. At its heart are the ruins of four medieval abbeys with Jedburgh, the most complete, the best to visit first for its insights into monastic life. Of the others, Melrose is both the pick of the bunch, and also close to Abbotsford, the sometime home of the Romantic novelist Sir Walter Scott, and a splendid receptacle for his engrossing collection of historical curios. There are fine country houses to visit, notably Mellerstain for its exquisite Robert Adam interiors, and Manderston, the enjoyable swan song of the Edwardian Country House. Anglers should note that the River Tweed is also one of Scotland’s finest salmon-fishing rivers.
An extensive waterfront regeneration and the addition of the V&A Museum to the banks of the River Tay has spruced up Dundee considerably, but it hasn't gone to Dundonians' heads. With plenty of wit and character, the locals are some of the friendliest in the UK.
As Scotland’s largest city, Glasgow is famed for its culture, shopping and people. Spend your day exploring a wide range of fascinating free museums and galleries, enjoying the UK’s best shopping outside of London, and taking advantage of tips from friendly local people on the city’s hidden gems — then choose from 130+ weekly musical events for a special night out. Glasgow is also the perfect base for exploring more of Scotland, with great connections to the Highlands and the islands.
Highland Perthshire places some of Scotland’s most spectacular scenery within easy reach of both Glasgow and Edinburgh, and Pitlochry is the most geared-up base from which to enjoy it. It’s been a bustling mountain resort since the railways arrived in 1863, and these days manages to be both a cozy favourite for tourists who enjoy browsing in its woolen mills and taking in the repertory of plays at its famous Festival Theatre, and a magnet for adrenalin junkies in search of bungee jumping, canyoning, tubing and white water rafting adventures. Visitors of any age will be intrigued by the Pictish carvings on the huge Dunfallandy stone at nearby Ballinluig and, after a bracing mountain walk or visit to the famous salmon ladder, adults can enjoy a warming dram of malt whiskey after a tour at one of the two local distilleries, Edradour and Blair Athol.
Once a shipbuilding city, Newcastle's flashier claim to fame is nightlife. Throw in a heap of premium restaurants serving foods from all over the world and it's no wonder young partiers choose to blow their hard-earned (or not-so-hard-earned) cash in Newcastle. While these amenities are certainly a draw for the hipsters and culture-seekers, it's the locals that make Newcastle a truly special place to visit. "Geordies," as they are often called, embody the pride, industriousness and resilient spirit of their city.
With a population of almost 300,000 in the city proper, Belfast has grown into a cosmopolitan destination and become a popular weekend break spot. With feelings of optimism and life pulsing through the city, Belfast makes for an energising getaway. It's never been easier to tour the city, thanks to a number of intriguing bus, taxi, boat and pedestrian options. Don't miss the Ulster Folk Museum or the Belfast Cathedral, and make sure to experience some of the award-winning restaurants, bars, clubs, galleries and theatres.
Liverpool's fortunes have historically been tied to shipping. But imports and exports like sugar, spice and tobacco pale in comparison with Liverpool's most famous export of all — The Beatles. Relive the hysteria at The Beatles Story Experience, and check out Paul's childhood home, but also leave time for exploring Liverpool Cathedral and the Walker Art Gallery.
You've probably heard that Guinness tastes better in Dublin (fresh from the factory), but what you may not know is that Dublin is a perfect destination for the whole family. No, we're not suggesting you let the kiddies drink a pint. Instead, take them to the Dublin Zoo, to feed the ducks in Stephen's Green or on a picnic in Phoenix Park. Scholars enjoy walking in the literary footsteps of such writers as Yeats and Joyce, while discerning shoppers have their pick of designer boutiques.
The Welsh capital may have begun its life as a Roman fort, but it's since become a bustling city. Where the fort once stood, Cardiff Castle has held court since the 11th century. It remains a central presence in the city, now full of lively art and music venues, hip boutiques, fun bars and modern hotels. Even with so many new and exciting things to see, the National History Museum is still the most visited attraction in Wales. Don't be the only visitor who plays hooky!
From Shoreditch’s swaggering style to Camden’s punky vibe and chic Portobello Road, London is many worlds in one. The city’s energy means that no two days are the same. Explore royal or historic sites, tick off landmarks from your bucket list, eat and drink in exclusive Michelin-starred restaurants, enjoy a pint in a traditional pub, or get lost down winding cobbled streets and see what you stumble across – when it comes to London, the possibilities are endless.
The first time you go to New York, go ahead and be a sight-seer—everyone should visit the Statue of Liberty, the Met, Times Square, etc. But on a return trip, pick a neighbourhood and go deep. You’ll find hole-in-the-wall bars, great delis, quirky shops… exploring the non-touristy side of New York is an incredibly rewarding experience for a traveller.
Dubai is a destination that mixes modern culture with history, adventure with world-class shopping and entertainment. Catch a show at the Dubai Opera, see downtown from atop the Burj Khalifa and spend an afternoon along Dubai Creek exploring the gold, textile and spice souks. If you’re looking for thrills, you can float above the desert dunes in a hot air balloon, climb aboard a high-speed ride at IMG Worlds of Adventure or skydive over the Palm Jumeirah.
From the Magic Kingdom to magical spa treatments, Orlando sparkles with the promise of adventure. Spend a day exploring the world-famous Disney theme parks or screaming your head off on a Universal Studios roller coaster. For a less adrenaline-pumping afternoon, enjoy the quiet natural beauty of the Harry P. Leu Gardens or enjoy a seaweed scrub at a luxury day spa. Savour fresh and local ingredients at one of Orlando’s James Beard-nominated restaurants.