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Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

Frisco, Colorado
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Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

Mom and I are trying to figure out our itinerary for late April - early May 2014, and the Bank Holiday falls smack in the middle of it. I've been advised that we wouldn't be too much affected by the holiday if we were in London, but I can't figure out an itinerary that has us in London in the middle of our trip.

If the Bank Holiday weren't a consideration, we'd probably plan to drive between N. Wales and the Peak District on the 2nd or 3rd of May. Could we plan our travel to miss the worst of the traffic, or would we be better off staying in one general location over the holiday weekend? Or is it just not that big of a deal?

Frisco, Colorado
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11. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

<The AA Route Planner, which is usually pretty accurate in my experience, gives a time of only 1hr 24mins.>

The 2 1/2 hours was from Conwy to Chatsworth House via Tatton Park... sorry for the confusion.

I have used both AA Route Planner and ViaMichelin, and they usually seem to come pretty close. I always assume the given times are optimistic.

Thanks for all of your replies. I feel far less concerned about travelling over that weekend, although I'll definitely keep in mind the premise that earlier is better and Friday and Monday afternoons should be avoided. I appreciate the tip about park & ride in Chester, as we'd really like to stop there.

We haven't worked out an exact itinerary, but this feedback definitely helps shape our plans. We're very much looking forward to seeing these parts of England and Wales! And don't worry AlanRow - we'll be prepared for the weather. I'm a mountain girl - we had 65 degrees F two days ago and snow on the ground this morning!

UK
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12. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

From North Wales you reach Chester before Tatton Park. Don't know what viamichelin are thinking of that takes two and a half hours. Route would be A55 to Chester, which it would be a crime to miss, then A556 or M56/M6 to Tatton Park

Less out of your way and very similar is Dunham Massey ,just off the M56 . Well signposted as you approach Manchester Airport. Also convenient to pick up the road to Macclesfield from there to reach the Peak District.

Come back to us with a suggested route and we'll advise further on its suitability.

Southampton, UK
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13. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

@ CoGal The weather in the UK is totally unpredictable but even in the south of England, where I Iive, the early May bank holiday does have a reputation for poor conditions. This year it was very wet and not very warm, even cold with night frosts.

Frisco, Colorado
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14. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

Chesterbuff - I will definitely come back with more specific route questions once we've pinned down our itinerary a little more. ViaMichelin says that it's about 2 1/2 hours between Conwy and Chatsworth (which I plugged in just because that's our main objective in the Peak District). Sorry again for the confusion over times.

We will definitely stop in Chester - in fact, had even considered making it our base rather than Conwy. Any thoughts?

Mike - thanks for that rather depressing insight ;-). It's not unlike here, where we just assume it will be snowing on Memorial Day weekend (end of May, when the rest of the country is having cookouts)! Wherever we are over that weekend, we'll plan to have indoor options.

Tonbridge, United...
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15. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

There's no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing. Wear layers and bring a good waterproof jacket...

Top tip: Pubs and cafes are a great place to warm up and dry out if you need to :)

UK
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16. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

Conwy or Chester? I would say Chester, so much to see and do. But take day trip to Conwy. 50 minutes on A55 so quick and easy and very worthwhile

UK
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17. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

Good advice from Chesterbuff

If you stay in Chester over the BH weekend you can still take a day trip to Chester on the Saturday quite easily,and you will find the A55 that much quieter. The weekenders will have travelled on the Friday and most of the day trippers will leave it until the Sunday or Monday.

And when you are heading to Chatsworth you are that much closer.

Conwy is well worth the day out

Edited: 29 September 2013, 17:25
18. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

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Frisco, Colorado
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19. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

Words to live by, Itsmeagain :-)

We really haven't set our minds on staying in N. Wales - just on seeing it, which could mean a day to Conwy to see the castle and walls, or several days exploring Snowdonia. If it were the latter, we would probably only be driving around and stopping to see anything that catches our fancies, or possibly taking a ride on one of the scenic railway lines. But - I could see it going either way right now (ie. day trip or several days). I need to talk more with Mom.

I've read enough about Chester to think it would serve as a great base, and Leuca's suggestion of staying over the Bank Holiday weekend is attractive. Definitely an option worth exploring... I'll be back with more specific questions!

20. Re: Should we avoid driving during early May Bank Holiday?

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