England Travel Guide
Devon's moors, England © dennisredfield
England Travel Guide
England remains one of the most atmospheric travel destinations in the world, with a wealth of cultural and historical attractions making the country irresistible to culture vultures. Once the powerhouse of the world's largest empire, England remains a proud and fascinating country, still hugely influential in global issues despite its diminutive size.
The capital city, London, boasts some of the most famous landmarks in the world, with historic gems like Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, and St Paul's Cathedral competing with modern favourites like the London Eye, Madame Tussauds, and the Shard. This endlessly interesting metropolis is only one of many worthy touristic cities in England: favourites like Bath, Birmingham, York, Oxford and Cambridge all vie for attention.
And beyond the cities, the glorious English countryside beckons with its rolling hills, gurgling streams, and stretching moorlands, all interspersed with stately homes, castle ruins, and quaint villages. Not to mention awe-inspiring, mysterious sites like the stone circles of Stonehenge and Castlerigg. Travellers can explore the beautiful Lake District, imbued with the literary heritage of Wordsworth and Beatrix Potter, village-hop in the pretty Cotswolds, or walk the rugged coastlines of Devon and Cornwall.
Best time to visit England
England has four distinct seasons, but the weather is notoriously changeable and rain is always a possibility. Although the incredible variety of cultural attractions ensures that England is a year-round sightseeing destination, the most popular time to visit is in late-spring and summer, between April and September, when the days are long and often sunny.
What to see in England
-Get lost in London's enormous British Museum, which overflows with the best of human culture.
-Discover England's fascinating Viking heritage in the popular city of York.
-Make a pilgrimage to the famous cathedrals of Canterbury and Salisbury.
-Experience Jane Austen's literary world in quaint and regal Bath.
What to do in England
-Sun yourself on the stripy deckchairs of Brighton Pier, England's favourite aristocratic beach retreat.
-Explore the City of Caves and Robin Hood's Sherwood Forest in Nottingham.
-Trace the ancient Roman fortifications of Hadrian's Wall across England.
-Go boating on the Norfolk Broads, England's most popular waterways.
Getting to England
England has numerous airports: London Heathrow Airport is the largest in the UK and one of the busiest in the world, and London Gatwick Airport and Manchester Airport are also very busy. England is easily accessed by flights from all over Europe and the US.
Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh, Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, and anything by Charles Dickens or Jane Austen.
The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Oasis, Blur, Coldplay, Radiohead, Queen, and The Arctic Monkeys.
Notting Hill (1999), Love Actually (2003), The King's Speech (2010), and An Education (2009).
Pimms, gin, and beer. And, of course, tea!
Fish and chips, full English breakfasts, ploughman's platters, and plenty of pie.
What to buy
Teacups, teapots, and tins of tea; gifts from Harrod's, Hamley's, and Liberty; royal family memorabilia.
What to pack
Layers, a waterproof jacket, and an umbrella as rain is likely in England in any season and the weather is highly changeable.
What's on in England
Events like the Chelsea Flower Show, the London Marathon, and Wimbledon attract thousands of visitors to England, and there are many famous music festivals to enjoy, including the gloriously muddy, celebrity-studded Glastonbury Music Festival.
Did you know?
-You can drive from England to France in an underwater tunnel.
-Oxford University once had rules that forbade students from bringing bows and arrows to class.
-Windsor Castle is the oldest and largest royal residence in the world that is still in use.
A final word
With more history and culture than anybody knows what to do with, the museums, galleries, and palaces of England will keep sightseers busy, while the lovely countryside enchants and refreshes tired tourists.
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