Didn’t manage to hitchhike to Barcelona, surf in Morocco or ski in the Alps this inter-semester breal? Why not take the opportunity to enjoy some of these very ‘British’ destinations, without the holiday tourists or the scorching summer heat…
Itching to get your skis racing on some pow? Then make your way by train to Aviemore in the Scottish Highlands, with thirty-five pistes from the green ‘Burnside’ to the black ‘West Wall’. Other activities include the Mountain Railway, that takes you to the Ptarmigan Top Station with its spectacular views over the mountains and the noteworthy Ptarmigan restaurant. With all this to choose from, you are bound to quickly forget your deadline stresses.
If the hub of a city is more to your therapeutic tastes, then head straight to London from Edinburgh Waverly and enjoy the relatively tourist-free streets. When your shopping bags are full of delights from Oxford Street, go to the Museum of London where a new exhibition has been launched; a projection of Dickensian scenes portrays the life and poverty of Victorian London and includes some of his original manuscripts.
For cobbled, medieval streets and a vibrant café culture, visit the city of York; the most haunted metropolis in Europe. This city offers Cycle Tours that last two to three days with accommodation included at B&Bs or central hotels. With your own unlimited transport, dart from café to bar to river to the fantastic Minster at your leisure.
What could be more relaxing than Bath’s Thermae Spa with its natural mineral rich waters, spa treatments and steam rooms? Look out over the rooftops of this West Country city from the deluxe open-air rooftop pool, open day and night, and soak your stresses away. The Jane Austen Centre and the Fudge Kitchen are well worth visiting too, with the latter found in the shadow of the famous abbey.
Hopetoun House, Edinburgh
If you need to stick closer to St Andrews, do not despair. Hopetoun House, on the other side of the Forth Road Bridge, is a spectacular country estate still inhabited by the Hope family, who have lived there since 1699. Amble around the stately rooms and 6,500 acres of grounds before relishing an afternoon tea of champagne and homemade sandwiches, cakes and scones in the converted stables.
The UK is your playground so take delight in all the unusual and exciting things it has to offer this semester.