United Kingdom Vacations
The United Kingdom, often referred to as Britain, consists of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Though they share a flag, a head of state and an outline on the map, each these four countries has a history, culture and landscape uniquely its own.
England—more precisely, Buckingham Palace in the capital city of London—is the official residence of the Queen. London is full of landmarks, both ancient and modern. The infamous Tower of London has stood as a palace, prison, and execution yard since 1066, making it one of the city’s oldest landmarks. Constructed in the mid-1800s, The Big Ben Clock Tower is one of the largest timepieces in the world. The London Eye or Millennium Wheel, built in 2000, adds a modern and somewhat whimsical touch to the city skyline.
Visitors to Wales can enjoy a tour of the lavish Cardiff Castle where visitors who climb to the top of the Norman Keep are rewarded with an incomparable view of the city. The National Museum showcases a wide variety of art and science displays, early Christian and Celtic treasures, and archaeology galleries with displays from the Bronze Age.
A visit to Scotland should include a trip to the capital city to tour the striking Edinburgh Castle, indulge in the Scotch Whiskey Experience or take a haunted tour. The coastal city of Glasgow is home to more than 30 galleries and museums, as well as a full calendar of performing arts and festivals.
From the British monarchy in London to the rock royalty of Liverpool, England has captured the world's attention for ages. The birthplace of William Shakespeare is found in Stratford-upon-Avon, while Stonehenge stands as a silent testament to some of the land's earliest residents.
With its rolling green hills and rocky coastal cliffs, Donegal exemplifies the striking contrasts found across Ireland's landscape. The beaches of Sligo attract professional surfers from around the world, and the many lakes of Carrick-on-Shannon lure avid anglers to County Leitrim.
Castles and lakes command much of the Scottish landscape. Set atop a hill at the end of the Royal Mile, Edinburgh Castle dominates the skyline of Scotland's capital city. Loch Lomond offers a range of water sports, while the ruins of Urquhart Castle overlook mysterious Loch Ness.
The Cambrian Mountains in Mid Wales are prime hiking terrain, and the Isle of Anglesey boasts 650 miles of trails for hiking and biking. North Wales offers castle tours in addition to golfing and water sports, and much of South Wales is covered by National Parks and Trails.