8 places for a weekend break in the South of England

It might not feel like it right now but it’s summer holiday season and it’s time to get out and about to explore the UK. Don’t worry if you don’t have the time of money to take a full week in the sun as we’ve put together 8 gorgeous places in the South of England that are all easily accessible for a weekend break. 

The south of England is one of the most popular spots in the UK to explore – partly because of the slightly better weather and the proximity to London – but mostly because it’s absolutely gorgeous and there’s so much to do!

So if you’re looking for a good old British weekender, here are some of the best spots in the south of England. For more info about each destination, check out this South England Travel Map for advice on how to get there, activities, food and drink and local attractions.

Here are 8 places in Southern England easily accessible for a weekend away from London.

 

1. Cambridge

Best for a romantic weekend away

The historical and romantic city of Cambridge ticks every box for a couple’s weekend retreat. The amazing architecture, museums, galleries, markets and boutiques will keep you busy and an impressive summer events program means there’s something going on almost every weekend. There are lots of fairs and festivals every year including the Cambridge Film Festival that’s held every September.

Don’t Miss: A punting tour for a traditional way to relax and see the magnificent buildings around you.

Cambridge | 8 places to visit in Southern England

2. Berkshire

Best for a traditional British weekender

Berkshire has more than it’s fair share of British pubs where you can enjoy a classic pie and chips surrounded by the gorgeous English countryside. You can also visit Windsor Castle, have a flutter on the races at Ascot or take a trip to many English gardens.

Don’t miss: A trip to Highclere Castle where Downton Abbey is filmed!

Berkshire | 8 places to visit in Southern England

 

3. Cornwall

Best for beach holidays

It’s not hard to see why Cornwall is one of the most popular holiday spots in the UK. Beautiful beaches and gorgeous wild swimming spots bring people back year after year.

Visit Cornwall’s 8th Wonder of the World, The Eden Project, or go to The Minak, an open air theatre with incredible views as it juts out into the sea.

Don’t miss: Learning to surf! Head to one on the gorgeous beaches such as Widemouth Bay where there are lots of surf schools to choose from.

Cornwall | 8 places to visit in Southern England

 

4. Devon

Best for activity holidays

If you’re looking for an adrenaline fuelled break then Devon is the places for you. Whether it’s walking, cycling, canoeing, surfing, caving, climbing or abseiling, there’s something for you in Devon.

Don’t worry, there are activities for those of you who prefer a gentler pace too, such as Dartmoor and Exmoor National Parks. Or if you love a bit of crime writing then follow the Agatha Christie Literary trail through Torbay and Torquay.

Don’t miss: Devonshire Cream Tea with lashings of clotted cream.

Devon | 8 places to visit in Southern England

 

5. Norfolk

Best for little wildlife lovers

Pay a visit to the Norfolk Broads, the protected wetland full of rare and beautiful wildlife. Norfolk has a lot of activities on offer but the wildlife activities aimed at kids are the star attractions. Take a boat trip or a river cruise and visit the Amazona Zoo or the Sealife Sanctuary.

Don’t miss: Get your culture fix at Sandringham House, the royal family’s country retreat.

Norfolk | 8 places to visit in Southern England

 

6. Suffolk

Best for foodies

This medieval town of Suffolk is great for all you foodies. It’s home to the Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival and is a great place to get an introduction to foraging. There are lots of foraging courses available, including one with Carl Shillingford, a trained chef who accompanies you into the forest. Once you have collected your goodies you can go back and cook up a storm under his expert supervision.

Don’t miss: Snape Maltings Farmer’s Market on the first Saturday of every month.

Suffolk | 8 places to visit in Southern England

 

7. Essex

Best for a little bit of everything

There’s so much more to Essex than dodgy tans and cheeky chappies. Essex has the UK longest coastline, the most islands and the longest pier so pack some comfy shoes, take in the fresh sea air experience the beautiful Essex coast.

Don’t miss: A trip to one of the 35 uninhabited islands surrounding Essex. They’re a haven for a wildlife and a great place to escape from the modern world.

Essex | 8 places to visit in Southern England

 

8. Sussex

Best for a spa weekend

Fancy treating yourself (or your partner/friend/mum) to a relaxing spa weekend? Sussex has a great choice of spas and there’s something extra special about a spa on the on the coast. The fresh sea air will help you de-stress, unwind and detoxify.

Don’t miss: Camber Sands Beach. Blow away the cobwebs on this gorgeous white sand beach.

Beachy Head, Sussex | 8 places to visit in Southern England

Is there anywhere else in the South of England you’d like to visit this summer?

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8 places to visit in Southern England

This post was written in collaboration with The Dream Lodge Group but, as always, all thoughts, opinions and obsessions with British weekend breaks are entirely my own!

TheTravelHack

Monica is the founder and editor of The Travel Hack. She began the blog in 2009 when she left the UK to travel around Asia and Australia for two years. She's now a professional blogger and has travelled around the world in search of stylish adventure travel. Monica has recently had her second baby and is determined to prove that travelling with a baby is possible!

SHOWHIDE Comments (9)
  1. These are wonderful destinations Monica, and worth visiting for both Brits and tourists!

    I would also add Brighton as it’s such a lovely place by the sea. Great food, lovely seaside, wonderful food & gorgous people!

    Oh, and because it’s a university town, quite budget-friendly too lol!

    ‘Nice one!

  2. Great list – will have to add some of these to my list of destinations I want to go to. I’ll soon be heading down to North Somerset for a short break. History in Bath, culture in Bristol and the International Bristol Balloon Fiesta 🙂

  3. I loved Cambridge and Cornwall, the other places are in my list!
    England is so beautiful I would like to be in every single place! 🙂

    Great post!

    xx

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The Travel Hack

The Travel Hack is a blog about stylish adventure travel and affordable luxury.

We believe luxurious travel can be affordable and isn't just for the rich. Follow along with our worldwide adventures as we share our trips and tips for incredible travel experiences on a modest budget.