Lake District & Northern England
Cradle of the Industrial Revolution, the north of England is filled with treasures, and some of the world's great poets and artists have been inspired by its dry stone walls, wuthering moors and mountain-ringed lakes. Visit World Heritage Sites such as Hadrian's Wall, strike out across the fells, relive the days of the Beatles in Liverpool and tuck into the best fish and chips anywhere.
Birthplace of the Industrial Revolution, the north of England is a treasure-trove of natural and man-made wonders; poets from William Wordsworth to Ted Hughes, and artists from Turner to Hockney have found inspiration in its dry stone walls, darkly wuthering moors and mountain-ringed lakes. The spellbinding natural beauty of the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales, astonishing sites such as Hadrian’s Wall and York Minster, a thriving gastronomic scene and straight-talking people who extend warmth, pride and a dry sense of humour are just some of the reasons to come.
While the highest peaks of Cumbria’s Lake District don’t even break a thousand metres, they lose nothing in scenic grandeur, and as you walk among the Borrowdale fells or take a boat trip on Ullswater, you will instantly be able to see what inspired Wordsworth to pen some of the world’s greatest romantic poetry. Further east the equally spectacular Yorkshire Dales with their limestone pavements, dry-stone walls and sheep-dotted hillsides, offer a perfectly harmonious juxtaposition of man and nature, while on the coast there are vertiginous sea-bird cliffs, bustling sea ports and ancient island monasteries that tell of the time when Northumbria was the intellectual centre of Europe.
History lovers have much to enjoy. Hadrian’s Wall is a stunning World Heritage Site that runs from coast to coast through the dramatic upland scenery of the Pennines, while York has medieval streets and a strong Viking heritage. Harry Potter fans will definitely want to visit Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, while aficionados of Evelyn Waugh can revisit Brideshead at Castle Howard. Foodies will also love the North of England and its thriving culinary scene where Michelin-starred restaurants-with-rooms such as L’Enclume and Holbeck Ghyll showcase fabulous local produce from Herdwick lamb to black pudding.
And if you want to get a real sense of what the North of England is like, a visit to its re-generated industrial powerhouse cities of Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Newcastle is a must. Watching Manchester United play in front of 75,000 at Old Trafford, making a Beatle-manic pilgrimage to The Cavern in Liverpool, or simply tucking into a proper fish and chips wrapped in newspaper is every bit as Northern as the lonely clouds and golden daffodils of the Lake District.
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Best for: Culture, Short Break
Full of luxurious elegance and old-world charm, The Grand, York occupies an historic building in the centre of town, offering spacious opulent rooms, a superb range of dining options, an indulgent spa, indoor pool and well-equipped fitness centre.