Skip to Content

Top 10 UK summer staycation destinations

Top 10 UK summer staycation destinations


It’s the summer of the great British getaway, as Covid conditions around the world and great weather here have us looking at our we thought we’d put together a round up of our favourite places to visit in the UK during the Summer Holidays.

We have a variety of suggestions in this round up, some of which are not surprising like Devon and Cornwall, but there are definitely some others you may not have considered.

Back in May we did a round up focused on your Favourite Places to Camp in the UK and this will be equally as useful for the Summer too!

The Peaks

The Peak District is the perfect destination for outdoor loving families this summer. Enjoy easy access walks across epic escarpments or verdant valleys, cycle flat trails that are traffic free, swim in rivers, canoe in canals, or try your hand at bouldering. There are lots of campsites still with availability across the Peak District National Park this summer and most of the attractions have now reopened, including Peak Wildlife Park, Crich Tramway Village and The Heights of Abraham. 

You could also consider both Sandybrook Park and Darwin Forest Country Park, both in the Peak District.

The Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is by far one of our favourite places to visit with the kids in the UK.  Aside from all the beautiful villages on offer there’s so much to keep the kids and adults entertained. 
Here’s a piece about a family holiday to the Cotswolds in Summer 2019.


Travelling with Boy’s love holidaying in Morecambe. So much quieter than its gaudy neighbour Blackpool, Morecambe has unspoiled views across the bay, a beautiful sandy beach perfect for kids and the best ice cream in the North West. We love booking into a B&B on the seafront (cheap as chips!), people watching on the promenade, tucking into fish and chips under the clock tower and it’s a great base to head into the Lake District of you fancy somewhere even more picturesque and scenic.

Lake District

Speaking of the Lake District, arranging a group holiday with family up and down the country can be logistically challenging. A trip to the Lake District, staying at a caravan park and visiting National Trust and tourist hotspots during our mini break made for the perfect destination for a summer staycation.
Glamping by the Lakes is amazing as well – think SUPing, walks with amazing views and s’mores! Plus a luxury safari tent with a hot tub.



Brompton Lakes is a tranquil luxury lodge estate situated around a fishing lake in Richmond Yorkshire. This is somewhere we had visited as part of a press trip a couple of years ago and have visited as a family break every year since then. 
If you are looking for beautiful accommodation you will find Brompton Lakes pretty hard to beat. However this gorgeous mini resort also boasts a huge fishing lakes and nature walks, with many of the lodges having a fishing jetty. This is an all year round UK haven that we adore visiting. 
We love to visit Whitby with kids in North Yorkshire.  It’s a stunning town with Whitby Abbey overlooking the sea and the famous 199 steps to climb up to the church made famous by Dracula.  Not only is it rich in history, there is loads for the kids to do from fossil hunting to donkey rides and rock pooling.  You can’t visit without trying fish and chips at the world famous Magpie and Whitby’s lemon topped ice cream.
York is a beautiful place to go this summer and the children will be guaranteed a great time. York itself has so much to do such as tasting chocolate in the Rowntrees factory to experiencing how Vikings lived in the Nordic centre. The York castle museum even has a real Victorian Street to explore! If that’s not enough you can find even more for little and big kids alike in the Yorkshire Shambles with a bit of Harry Potter thrown in! 



Shetland is a fantastic place to visit when the summer sun brings lots more of the wildlife flourishing. We love it here, it is somewhere to get away from the world, at the very top of the United Kingdom where the Scottish accent has an undeniable Norwegian lilt. It feels otherwordly and beautiful. My children love exploring Iron Age brochs, scooping up handfuls of soft wool from wandering sheep and watching seals, Oystercatchers, otters, Puffins and more. Shetland with kids feels like holidays of yesteryear and is the perfect place to unplug and relax.
Outer Hebrides
One of our utmost favourite holidays has to be to the Outer Hebrides. We’ve visited all the islands along this stretch over two separate years, although you could feasibly start in Lewis and work your way down to Barra over 2 weeks. They have the most beautiful white beaches with turquoise sea and so much wildlife and history to explore. One day can be spent exploring stone circles and brochs, the next on a Corncrake or dolphin hunt! It really is a special place to be.
We love Edinburgh. We have been going for years and it has so much to offer both with and without children. Each time we go we find something new but our favourite way to spend the day has to be a visit to the Scottish museum which has many floors of spectacular exhibits and on a clear day if you visit the roof you have views over the city that I think are the best (you can get the lift up). There are also areas to sit and the children can really immerse themselves – colouring, costumes and even a tree to clime in.
Edinburgh has a rich history and a walk up to the castle is lovely from the museum. Hearing the bagpipes along the way. We love to go inside Camera Obscura – you can get heavily discounted entry with your clubcard points – it has something for all ages.


Snowdonia has become the adventure capital of Europe. There’s so many wonderful things to do there… epic castles, natural beauty in lakes, mountains and beaches. Not only that but the area is seeped in industrial heritage with lots of attractions making use of this heritage such as steam trains and museums. But to top it all there’s also plenty of activities for the adrenaline junkies including zipwires, karting, surfing, you name it they’ve got it!
Near Cardiff, there’s great walking and mountain biking fun in the Afan Valley — including mountain biking training so you can try it as a family.


Family fun and adventure are totally guaranteed in Norfolk – the whole family will love it! Not only has Norfolk got great countryside and coast, but also fantastic theme parks, zoos and farms, gardens to visit,
stately houses and museums. There are parks and treehouse playgrounds, wildlife and nature reserves, steam railways and so much more.  With gorgeous countryside, beautiful beaches and miles and miles of
unspoilt coastline, if you are looking for a great place for adventure, then why not take one of these great family holidays in Norfolk
What about Wells-next-the-sea in Norfolk.The sand is so soft and the sea stretches for miles. I came here as a child every year and it was wonderful to introduce my kids who love it just as much. Beach huts, shells, the pine woods and lots of beach treasure to find – what’s not to love. 


From the bright lights and buzz of Margate to the more sedate Broadstairs, there is much to discover along Kent’s glorious coastlines. My favourite, however, is Whitstable. Not far from London, you can walk along the harbour front, grab some of the UK’s best oysters and seafood, walk along relatively quiet stretches of pebbly beach and eat in some first-class restaurants. From crabbing and ice cream to shopping and exploring in nearby historic Canterbury, there is so much to see and do.

South West

What about a holiday to Dorset there’s just so much to do to keep you entertained. The beaches are stunning – a favourite being Studland. There’s plenty of choice in accommodation, a caravan at Rockley Park  overlooking Poole Harbour, or a cottage holiday. Greenwood Grange near Dorchester is amazing, and so family friendly. There are some great days out all over the county including Farmer Palmer’s Farm Park the best. 
We love waterside at Weymouth. The on-site facilities are fabulous with archery, paddle boarding and a spa. It’s stunning and the service has always been brilliant. 
Somerset is famed for gorgeous beaches, views, and food, but when we visited, it was to find the more secret locations of this stunning county, away from the tourist crowds. Our guide to secret Somerset took us to towers with the best view of Dunster Castle, to hidden beach waterfalls, and to a totally retro Bakelite museum where I relived my childhood on every corner. 

Cornwall is undoubtedly one of the best places for a family holiday in the UK. This corner of England is home to over 300 beaches, 200 countryside and coastal walking trails and myriad gardens and outdoor theatres to enjoy. Although the summer months are the most popular, Cornwall still draws a crowd at other times of year. There are castles to explore, old tin mines to visit and a fascinating pirating history to discover, Cornwall with kids is a great place to be.


Clare may be totally biased, as she lives in Devon, but they honestly feel like they are always on holiday. And with travel so up in the air this summer they have decided that the West Country is where they will be staycationing this summer.

Whether you’re looking for a beach holiday, somewhere for adventures in the great outdoors, or a place with plenty of family-friendly accommodation, Devon won’t disappoint. And, despite the changes to the way we can all get out and about, there’s still plenty of things to do in Devon this summer from visits to the zoos, to fun-packed theme parks and walks in the county’s two national parks. 

For a quintessential summer holiday I don’t think you can beat North Devon; expansive stretches of sand that provide a perfect playground for sandcastle competitions, paddling or even surfing if you’re feeling energetic. Despite living by the sea, we travel to Saunton Beach each year which gives us a great base for exploring the dunes, heading to the Tarka Trail (an old railway line) on bikes or going to the dinosaur park at Coombe Martin. It’s a great place for all ages! 

Isles of Scilly

The Scilly Isles lie just off the Coast of Cornwall in the United Kingdom. There are a number of uninhabited islands, plus five inhabited islands: Bryher, Tresco, St Martin’s, St Mary’s and St Agnes.  All are so very different but all equally beautiful. The isles of Scilly offers beautiful beaches, wildlife, watersports, amazing food and peace and tranquility. It is extremely family friendly and one of our favourite places to visit.

More travel ideas from BritMums


Pin it for later: Our favourite UK staycation destinations for summer holidays!


About Karen Beddow

Karen Beddow is the Editor of Mini Travellers, a multi award winning Family Travel blog. Karen left her full time role as a commercial litigation solicitor when her three children were then 6 and 5 (twins) to concentrate on her Family Travel blog so that she could spend more time with the children and travel a lot more. From camping to five star resorts, from Welsh beaches to African plains there isn't many places the Mini Travellers won't travel and they are determined to enjoy every moment of it. Mini Travellers is all about proving that travelling anywhere with kids is possible.