Inspiring travels in your camper van
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has compiled a list of 10 must see places in the UK with the help of its passionate owners. The locations are the ideal spots to find a campsite and park up your California or Grand California for a great British holiday.
Isle of Skye, Scottish Isles
The Isle of Skye is the largest island of the Inner Hebrides measuring in at 50 miles long and is packed with stunning scenery and landscapes. On any trip you’ll likely find plenty of wildlife on and around the isle including rare birds and otters, seals, whales and dolphins. The island also has its place in British history as it was briefly the residence of the infamous Bonnie Prince Charlie.
Durdle Door, Dorset
Jutting off a beach on the Jurassic Coast near Lulworth in Dorset is Durdle Door - one of the most photographed and iconic landmarks in the UK. The stone arch gets its name from the old English “thirl” which means to drill and has been created over centuries of natural erosion from the waves and weather. It’s Britain’s first natural World Heritage site and sits on a list alongside the Great Barrier Reef and the Grand Canyon.
Lake Windermere, Lake District
England’s largest and most famous lake is Windermere. Standing at 10.5-miles long and 219 feet deep, it takes its name from the Scandinavian for “lake of a man called Vinandr”. The towns and villages surrounding it are some of the most popular in the Lake District including Bowness. Windermere also has its place in Britain’s literary folklore with Arthur Ransom setting part of the 1930s classic “Swallows and Amazons” during a summer holiday at the lake. Windermere’s history dates back even further with a Roman fort sitting at the northern tip.
St Ives, Cornwall
The flagship of Cornwall is the harbour town of St Ives, regularly voted as one of the top beaches in Europe. The town is full of cobbled streets and quaint cottages while beaches are a subtropical oasis of golden sands and lush vegetation. Given all this it’s no surprise that it’s a hotspot for holiday makers as well as being an inspiration for painters, sculptors and ceramists.
Cheddar Gorge, Bristol
Cheddar Gorge is a unique set of inland limestone cliffs that soar to 450ft, created by melting water from the Ice Age. A road carves between the Gorge offering some incredible views but don’t just drive through as you can explore the ancient caverns and incredible wildlife that resides here. Inside one of these caves is Britain’s oldest complete human skeleton – Cheddar Man estimated to be over 9,000 years old and uncovered in Gough’s Cave in 1903.
Loch Lochmond, Scottish Highlands
Loch Lomond Scottish Highlands Loch Lomond is the biggest loch or lake in the whole of Britain and its size is matched by its beauty. It’s so big in fact that it has its own islands including one which features a colony of wallabies. The area surrounding Loch Lomond is a national park with sprawling glens and rocky peaks with the line that divides Highlands and Lowlands running right down the middle of the park. The nearby Trossachs National Park has provided inspiration for Wordsworth, Coleridge and Sir Walter Scott through the centuries.
Causeway Coast, Northern Ireland
The Causeway Coastal Route is one of the best drives in the UK, starting from Belfast and finishing in Derry via intense cliff faces, ancient castles and even an extinct volcano. Don’t forget to stop by the iconic Giant’s Causeway – a geological wonder and a World Heritage Site. Game of Thrones fans can also enjoy a slice of TV memorabilia with the Dark Hedges doubling as the King’s Road in the popular fantasy series.
Betws-y-Coed, North Wales
Dubbed the “Gateway to Snowdonia”, Betws-y-Coed has an alpine feel that makes it unique to the UK. Surrounded by a dense forest, the area has some of the best driving roads in the country. It’s somewhat of a hotspot for activity and adventure buffs, too, with zip lines and Europe’s highest giant swing.
Route 500, Scottish Highlands
Few things beat a Volkswagen California on the open road and in the UK few things can beat Route 500 in the Scottish Highlands for top honours. Starting in Inverness, the route takes in back roads, country tracks and incredible scenery as it loops around 516 miles of northern Scottish coastline. You’ll need around five days to complete the stretch, especially if you want to stop off at hotspots like Ullapool and John O’Groats.
Perched high on the north Cornwall coastline, Tintagel - a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - offers dramatic sea views, clifftop walks, castle ruins and a healthy dose of British mythology. Tintagel Castle is rumoured to be the birthplace of King Arthur while one of the caves on the beach is said to be the home of Merlin.