Seeing photos of sunny places every time you scroll through your Facebook newsfeed can be extremely frustrating especially when the sky here has assumed its usual stubborn, unimpressive grey veneer. Nothing can produce itchy feet to go and see the rest of the world quite like that same sight each day. If it's a bit early in the year to book your summer holidays, frustration levels are rising and you are in need of some travel inspiration, why not visit one of the beautiful locations that the UK has to boast of? Yes, they do exist I promise!
The Giant's Causeway, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland.
They say that when you visit the Giant's Causeway you are walking in the footsteps of giants, deriving from the old story of Finn McCool. The story goes that the giant Finn McCool built the causeway in order to go to battle with Scotland, across the sea. Arriving in Scotland and daunted by the size of his enemy he retreated home with his Scottish enemy hot on his trail. In order to save him, Finn's wife disguised him as a baby. This meant that when his Scottish foe arrived and saw the size of his baby, he figured he wouldn't be prepared to battle with the father of such a large baby. Running back home to Scotland his footsteps are said to have ripped up the causeway and left the remarkable columns of hexagonal rocks that have become so iconic for Northern Irish tourism. The other theory is that the rocks were made into the shape they are by a volcanic explosion sixty million years ago. Whatever you choose to believe this beautiful area of the UK is not one to be missed.
Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands
Much like the Giant's Causeway, Loch Ness is infamous for its myth and legend in the form of Nessie the Loch Ness Monster. 23 miles long and 700 ft deep, it is one of Scotland's largest lochs. Fringed by picturesque villages, Loch Ness makes for a lovely area to have a drive beside, taking in the expansive views of the Loch. Want to get a closer inspection? There are boat trips available if you're brave enough to enter Nessie's home. There is plenty of surrounding landscape to explore, if having a hike in the Scottish Highlands is up your alley. Additionally, fishing is a popular activity at Loch Ness with a great deal of different kinds of fish in its waters.
The Lake District, Cumbria, England
The Lake District was a popular area in the late 19th Century and early 20th Century for the Romantic poets such as William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, John Keats and Percy Shelley. Wordsworth, the most out of all the Romantic poets had a particular affinity with the Lake District finding its beauty and expansive, "untamed" countryside to be a source of sublime inspiration. It inspired his love for the natural word which is a core influence in his poetry. The Lake District is the ideal place to reinvigorate your love for the outdoors and become in tune with nature.
Brecon Beacons, Powys, South Wales
Covering approximately 520 sq miles of South and Mid Wales, Brecon Beacons is perfect to escape the grind. There is much more to offer beyond moorland, including a medieval church, castle, waterfalls and star gazing so good you can see the Milky Way. Although the park was established in 1957 there is a much deeper history behind it, just waiting to be explored. The park offers an insight into Wales's ancient past with 8 millennia of human activity evidenced in the land ranging from the Norman Conquest to a preserved glacial lake. Suffice to say, Brecon Beacons is not your average park.