Avoiding Tourist Hordes

edited August 31 in British Travel

This recent article in The Times of London was upsetting. Brits can't really go abroad right now, so many are seeing their own country - some for the first time. And they're flocking to a lot of the same famous tourist attractions all at once. For example Bourton-on-the-Water in the Cotswolds.

Now, we've been there, and it's beautiful. No doubt about that. 

But there are so many other beautiful places in Britain other than this - that will have far fewer crowds! So, let's have an open thread about where these beautiful, less touristy places are!

I recommend Much Wenlock in the Mid-lands - it's beautiful with plenty to see and do.


  • We live in Sussex and it's definitely off the tourist trail, unless you go to Brighton. My advice is to come here during the Summer school holidays (between the end of July to beginning of Sept) - all the locals go elsewhere for their holidays (i.e. abroad or the West Country) and it's much quieter out and about. There are lots of beautiful National Trust properties to visit and it's commutable (about an hour by train) to central London. The south coast is within easy reach too: there's Brighton, Eastbourne and the stunning South Downs National Park. There's Beachy Head near Eastbourne, which is part of the amazing chalk undulating cliffs known as the Seven Sisters facing the English channel. There's so much history and beautiful scenery inland too, with lush green countryside; including the Ashdown Forest; the setting for Winnie the Pooh and the hundred-acre wood. There's the Bluebell Steam Railway amongst other heritage steam railways too.

    I do notice that US and other foreign visitors all seem to go to the same tourist destinations in the UK, which are very lovely indeed and a treat to visit, but please do try and come to the less visited places such as Kent and Sussex and who knows what you'll discover? Hoping you'll all be able to come back soon ;-).

  • Can attest to this - I loved my visit to Kent & Sussex back in 2016. Beautiful area - you could almost call it 'England's England.'

  • I was surprised to see Much Wenlock mentioned! In 2012, my husband & I accidentally came across it, travelling from Iron Gorge to somewhere. We stayed at The Talbot Inn, High Street, in a building separate from the main. Very spacious room and definitely old building. We had dinner there; I can still hear my husband raving about how good the pork roast was. After breakfast the next morning, we wandered through the Guild Hall, the museum, and down to the Priory with its unique topiaries. Short visit but we enjoyed it and would go again!

  • In May, 2018, a friend and I spent a couple of days in Bourton; definitely worth a visit. Fortunately it was still early enough in May that not too many tourists were out & about.

    I was glad to find that my friend & her husband travelled as we did - no reservations anywhere & travel "as the wind takes us." It keeps us very relaxed & seldom have we had trouble finding a stopping place. She & I started the last trip in Alfriston, E Sussex - another off-the-path location well worth the stay, near Hastings & Brighton. I think we find those lesser visited places when we don't try so hard to see the better known sites.

    As always -- too many places, too little time!

  • We rented a house for a couple of week in Stow-on-the-Wold July 2019 and used this as a home base for day trips in the Cotswolds, Oxford, Warwick and Bath. We didn't see a lot of tourists, although there were some, and loved that it was a real working town. On the days we decided to stay in town it was great to pop into the pub or the grocery and be recognized by the owners. The house was rented through Character Cottages and was very affordable. We have two older teenage daughters who felt completely comfortable walking into town or around the open fields on their own, and we felt comfortable letting them.

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