With recent news of the pound tumbling lower and lower against the Euro, leading online travel insurance and airport parking supplier, Essential Travel, have researched the top ten UK destinations that still offer a good value for money vacation, without skimping on quality. Whether it's a long weekend or a summer holiday, these destinations will help your pound go further.
A gated city sitting between two adjoining rivers, York has a history dating back to prehistoric times and has been a backdrop for numerous influential political events. It may sound like a place in the process of emerging from the pages of a dark fairytale, but not only does it offer a wealth of historic attractions, it's also pretty reasonably priced.
Accommodation: You can stay in Bed and Breakfast accommodation at James College for just £30 per night. The beautiful green lawns and rivers make it quite a special place for travellers during holiday times.
Food: The Hairy Fig claims to sell York's finest pork pies, and at £1.30 a pie, it's worth the gamble. Or for something a little more filling, Cafe No.8 Bistro's steak and chips has been known to keep patrons full for days. At just £4.95, it certainly is a delicious bargain.
About 96 miles west of London lies the World Heritage Site, Bath . A tour of this city is like a very interesting history class, and you'll leave with an abundance of knowledge along with a relatively full wallet. Bath is well known for its two-for-one city tours.
Accommodation: Once again, we're in a university town and if budget accommodation is what you're looking for, then university residences are perfect. At £30 per person for a standard room, you'll be saving a lot of money. Alternately, staying at a farm or inn might suit you better. Think baked bread, smouldering fireplaces in the winter, and swimming in the river in summer, all with the hospitality of the locals. Farmhouse bed and breakfasts are upwards of £60 for two people sharing.
Food: Best of British isn't just a deli, selling organic, locally produced food with an emphasis on making everything delicious; it is also really cheap. With gourmet sandwiches sitting comfortably at £2.50 and a slice of quiche for just £3.25, this is one of the more popular Bath eateries.
From visiting the scenic beaches to exploring a few of their 98 parks and gardens and taking a walk in the Sussex countryside; Brighton is a budget explorer's dream. Of course, we can't spend all our time outdoors, so for those rainy or cold days, you can visit Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, the Hove Museum and Art Gallery or the Brighton Fishing Museum. There's a little bit of free fun for every kind of traveller and with the sea at your doorstep, your holiday is already off to a great start.
Accommodation: Many of the hotels in Brighton offer family rooms for up to five people for just £125. Self-catering accommodation have comfortable rooms and chalets with stunning sea views. And if you're looking for a real money-saver, then self-catering is the way to go as prices start at a reasonable £29.
Food: If you enjoy a good plate of curry, you'll love Planet India. The warm dishes are served up for just £4.50 and the starters are priced at a reasonable £2.
Belfast may be a small city, but it's home to many things - from the Irish linen industry and tobacco production to rope making and Harland and Wolff shipbuilders; and has learnt a thing or two about welcoming visitors with open arms. So whether you prefer shopping and down-to-earth dining, or unique cuisine and relaxing outside, Belfast fits all your tourist desires. And if you're a party lover, there are many nightclubs that allow you to dance right into the morning.
Accommodation: Ibis Belfast Queens Quarter offer rooms for two people at just £50. The three-star hotel is situated within minutes of the hub of the city and is tastefully decorated, with wooden floors and modern furnishings.
Food: Build a Burger is probably every fast food lover's dream. You can literally build a burger. It starts with a choice of four buns, and then a choice of four burger patties, and numerous sauces and toppings. You can get all of this and chips for just £5. If you're looking for something a little more health-conscious, there's a delicious salmon salad, amongst other options, at the charming John Hewitt Bar. With all the trimmings of a traditional pub, John Hewitt is a winner. The food sits in the £5 to £8 range.
The gift of Cornwall is wrapped by 300 miles of coastline, with a peninsula that tumbles into the magnificent Atlantic Ocean. And with beach towns that vary from busy fishing harbours to clear waters, it's no surprise that Cornwall is popular for surfing and a variety of other water sports. If you prefer to be on solid ground, Heartland Amusement Park is one of the places you have to visit. The chances of finding a free amusement park anywhere in the world are pretty unlikely - especially one with tunnels, slides and a shipwrecked boat. But in Cornwall, that's not all though - The Camel Trail, Falmouth Art Gallery and Roskilly's Ice Cream Farm are all awesome. And free.
Accommodation: Cottages in Cornwall are incredibly popular, and fairly reasonably priced. Tideway is one of the best cottages in Cornwall. It has pubs,shops and the beach within walking distance and a garden and a pool to enjoy. It's a bit more expensive than other Cornwall cottages but it still only adds up to about £30 per person.
Food: Porthmeor Beach Cafe is big on breakfasts with plates of scrambled egg, bacon, pancakes and baked bread continuously coming out of the kitchen. Its lunch menu ranges from grilled fish, chips and vegetables to a wide selection of tapas. Prices are all under £10.
Norfolk seems to have it all; clear coastline, interesting nature reserves, incredible wildlife, market towns and seaside resorts. If that isn't enough to entice you, then maybe Britain's Magical Waterland will do the trick.
Accommodation: The Travelodge Great Yarmouth Acle provides a decent room at £30 per night. Or if you want peace and quiet and space to yourself, then a quaint cottage is the best option. In North Norfolk, four bedroom cottages can go for just £225 a week for four people. That works out to just under £10 per person per night, a definite bargain.
Food: Situated in Great Yarmouth Road, Norfolk, The Artichoke is, as described on their website, a quiet, rural, free-house pub. And they serve great food. A soup starter is around £3, but the real meal winner is their lambs' liver, sausage, bacon, mushrooms and saute onions, which costs £9.95. It may be a bit steep, but there's so much food that you can share it.
It's not hard to understand why Pembrokeshire is the most popular coastal destination in Wales. Boasting the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, the only coastal national park of its kind in the United Kingdom, Pembrokeshire has an abundance of great beaches, so now is the perfect time to visit. A beach holiday at budget prices!
Accommodation: For just £25 you can find yourself in the comfortable, three-star Springwell Inn. This Bed and Breakfast is located directly opposite Pendine beach and even serves breakfast, lunch and supper at its Welsh Cottage Pub. Or for an even cheaper deal, Bunkers Self Catering is ideal for big groups. It prides itself on its convenience for Hen and Stag Parties and at £20 per person per night, it's easy to see why this is the go-to option for those wild nights.
Food: With breakfasts starting at £1.50, The Sound Café is one the most popular cafés in Pembrokeshire. Customers love their Thai-style fish cakes and linguine pasta with roasted vegetable sauce.
Dorset has a long history of human settlement; from the Romans who conquered the indigenous Celtic tribes, to the shire-making Saxons of the 7th century. Receiving accolades like UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site for its 200 million year old shoreline and being named as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty for its countryside, Dorset is a place best enjoyed with a good camera, a sense of adventure and a desire to learn more.
Accommodation: Booking at the right time is the best way to save. While many people think that booking early is best, sometimes taking the risk and booking at the last minute pays off. If you can book in the nick of time, you can sleep in four-star hotels for just £20.
Food: Town Mill Bakery doesn't only make delicious, freshly-prepared food, but also has a charming quality about it. These days, it's cool to be simple and relaxed - an atmosphere echoed throughout the restaurant's menu. Since they don't do plates, you can just grab a breadboard and help yourself to toast, eggs, muesli or pizza. Once this is done, you can enjoy your meal in a converted boatyard shed. At £5.75, being cool just became a whole lot cheaper.
9. The Peak District
With all that the Peak District has to offer, you'd think that accommodation and food prices would be pushing the boundaries danced around by the rich and richer. Thankfully, this is not the case. Enjoy walks on the Monsal Trail or cycling around Rudyard Lake - arguably one of the most beautiful places in England. Rudyard Lake was created between 1797 and 1800 as a reservoir for the Caldon and Trent and Mersey canals. Today, it's used for rowing, fishing, mini boat cruises and for the more daring, swimming.
Accommodation: Pinewood Cottage in Ashover is a spacious, comfortable cottage just on the edge of the Peak District. It's perfect for a family or a group of friends. And they even allow pets. With a charming garden featuring a pond and waterfall, the price of £130 for the week certainly sounds worth it.
Food: In a tourist destination as popular as the Peak District, finding budget food is all about knowing the right places to visit, and then going at the right time. Village Green in Eyam is relatively new, and keen to establish their business, prices are seriously low for this area. Breakfast is just £2.70, while sandwiches, pies and jacket potatoes come in at about £2.60.
While Liverpool has been in the shadow of its famous football team for many years, the city has its own set of accolades to be proud of. The first one is how long it's been around for - since 1207. Secondly, it's produced more number one singles than any other city . From the Beatles to Gerry and the Pacemakers, Liverpool is the home of music, which explains why Guinness named Liverpool the Capital City of Pop. You can even visit the Cavern Club, the world-famous venue the Beatles played at in the 1960s. For culture enthusiasts, the World Museum is a must-see. And we haven't forgotten the night-time adventurers - Hardman Street caters to everyone.
Accommodation: A hotel in Liverpool will set you back anywhere between £30 and £90 per night, but cottages and guesthouses are significantly cheaper. You can get a holiday cottage that sleeps seven for just £80 per night.
Food: Most Liverpool bars and pubs have meal specials and reasonably-priced snack foods. Sandwiches are around £3.95, while burgers, fries and a drink are just £4.95. For a full on meal at a restaurant, you're going to have to fork out a little extra.
About Essential Travel
Established in 2001, Essential Travel is one of the UK's leading online travel essentials companies. Since 2002, we've protected over 5 million holidaymakers with our fully-comprehensive, competitively-priced travel insurance, as well as providing priority access to the most sought after car parks, hotels and lounges at all major airports across the UK.
Essential Travel is now part of Holiday Extras.