London is the capital of the UK, and it is perfectly possible to spend a week, or even two, without ever leaving there, enjoying all the sights and attractions it has to offer. A ride on the London Eye gives a view out over the city, where Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Westminster, and St. Paul’s Cathedral are just some of the main places to photograph and visit.
There is much more to England than just London though. Away from the capital, you can drive though rolling, green countryside, peppered with quaint villages of thatched roof cottages. Historic towns, ancient castles and mysterious stone circles all add to the sense of history, culture and heritage which makes England such an interesting place to visit.
Some of the major points of interest to be included in a self drive tour of England include Windsor for its castle, the incredible stone circle of Stonehenge, Salisbury for its magnificent cathedral, Bath for its Roman remains, the university city of Oxford, Stratford-Upon-Avon, and much further north, York. Each of these places is worth spending a half day to a full day in, and notable vibrant cities such as Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool are also worth driving to in a hire car for 2 or 3 day breaks. In fact, you could spend two months in England alone and barely scratch the surface!
The mountainous country of Wales is an excellent place to spend a week exploring in a hire car. There are some incredibly attractive and awe-inspiring castles here, with perhaps the most famous being Caernarfon Castle. Outdoors enthusiasts will also enjoy the chance to spend time in pristine natural environments and Snowdonia, one of the most beautiful national parks in the country. The Brecon Beacons is also a wonderful place with the mountain scenery, waterfalls, canals and meandering streams.
Scotland is the most northern country in the UK, and driving from London to Edinburgh takes approximately 7 hours. Edinburgh is a fine city, and the historic medieval heart has the castle, cathedral, Holyrood house and more to boast as main attractions. It is quite easy to spend 3 or 4 days here, although people on a tighter schedule may want to continue their self drive tour of the UK after 2 days. After all, there are the highlands, the lowlands, the coasts and whiskey distilleries to be visited!
Northern Ireland is not attached to mainland Britain, and so has to be reached by ferry or plane. It is less visited than Ireland, but has all the green countryside and stunning landscapes of its southern neighbour. Away from the cities, the countryside becomes a nature lover’s paradise. The Mourne Mountains are a great place to explore, where centuries old mountain track meander by rivers, lakes and forested areas. The mountains themselves are also very appealing for climbers. The north coast of Northern Ireland is another wonderful place to explore by hire car on a self drive tour. The coastal scenery is outstanding, and no one can fail but to be impressed by the Giants Causeway and unspoilt beaches.