So you’ve finished that ridiculous mound of paperwork on your desk, spoken to the HR department to request some time off, and now you’re pining to get started on your vacation planning process. But where to begin?
Well, you’ve probably seen the incessant television commercials and online advertisements about holiday travel; you know, the ones that make even the bleakest destinations seem as if they’re heaven-sent. But the only reason that you’re reading this article in the first place is because you know better than to fall into that deceptive marketing trap. After all, you’ve probably visited one of those highly publicised vacation spots not too long ago and, as a result, you’re well aware of the stark difference between what you see in ads and the actual reality of modern vacations.
For instance, if you happen to witness a tropical resort commercial, you’ll surely see exotic sun-soaked beaches, spotless facilities, world-class restaurants, and a wide array of activities on offer to boot. However, if you actually book a trip to this theoretical location, it’s worth noting that you’ll be faced with a situation completely juxtaposed to what you gleaned from the advertisement. From the swarms of sweaty beach-goers and poorly-maintained communal areas to the inordinate wait times for activities and restaurant dishes that look nothing like their photographic depictions, it won’t take long for you to start feeling as though you’ve been bamboozled and taken for a ride. Thus, the picturesque advertisements you see are usually just clever ploys used to obscure the taxing reality of facilitating a holiday plan in this day and age.
Unfortunately, you’ll likely be faced with this type of situation in almost every popular vacation destination around the globe, especially if you happen to schedule your excursion during a peak tourism season. After all, the global tourism industry is worth almost seven trillion pounds and more than a billion people engage in touristic travels on an annual basis, which means that avoiding the hoi polloi of modern vacations is much easier said than done. However, it’s important to point out that there are still some relatively unspoilt holiday destinations remaining in the world; immaculate regions that have yet to be overrun by multinational hotel chains and greedy capitalistic pursuits.
Enter the UK’s magnificent Peak District.
The Peak District
The United Kingdom’s Peak District is quaintly situated amongst towering beech trees and seemingly endless rolling hills in the heart of the country. As one of the most well-preserved natural settings in all of Europe, it should come as no surprise to find out that more than 22 million travellers escape into the Peak District wilderness each year. However, due to the fact that 48% of visitors stay for only three hours or less, the entire region has remained pristine and uncorrupted by tourism or heavy human activity. Apart from the organic wooded areas and sprawling knolls, the Peak District also features incredible cultural diversity, historically significant structures, bustling nearby metropolises, and a boundless collection of traditional townships. So, whether you wish to take a tranquil stroll through the local wooded boroughs or enjoy a cold one at a local village pub, everything seems to be in arm’s reach when you’re in the Peak District. Take a brief moment to review some of the most prevalent sights and settings within the region:
- Dovedale: Nestled in the heart of the Peak District sits the strikingDove Valley, which is colloquially referred to as Dovedale. From the incredible limestone formations in Thorpe Cloud to the picturesque River Dove flowing through the area’s charming gorge, the Dove Valley is an absolute must-see for anyone travelling to the region.
- MonsalTrail: Approximately 13 kilometres in length, the Monsal Trail is one of the most frequented paths in the entire United Kingdom. Whether you wish to cycle, walk, or ride a horse along the trail, you’ll be able to see an incredible assortment of historic sights ranging from the Old House Museum in Bakewell all the way to the centuries-old Millers Dale railway station.
- LadybowerReservoir: Built in the late 1930s by the Derwent Valley Water Board, this unique Y-shaped reservoir offers views of some of the most distinctive panoramic vistas in the world, which makes it the perfect day trip destination for both nature lovers and holiday-goers alike. From the nearby Laneside Caravan Park and Yorkshire Bridge Inn to the enchanting picnic spots dotting the region, a Peak District getaway isn’t complete without a visit to the Ladybower Reservoir.
Booking Your Stay
When travelling to a site as unique as the Peak District, you’ll want to avoid booking your stay in a generic chain hotel, especially if one of your primary goals is to get a flavour of the local lifestyle. Believe it or not, the best way to start your planning process is by reaching out to one of the local real estate agencies. Contrary to popular belief, these privately-held agencies don’t focus solely on buying and selling properties as they also offer cottages for hire in the Peak District as well.
Although you’ll likely be staying in a traditionally-inspired cabin, cottage, or bungalow, it’s worth noting that you’ll have access to more than just some antiquated butter churners, buggies, and old-fashioned amenities. To put it bluntly, you’ll be provided with all of the trimmings, furnishings, and conveniences that you’ve come to expect from a five-star hotel but you won’t have to jockey with hordes of tourists during your stay. All of the cottages come equipped with the following provisions:
- Broadband Wi-Fi
- Fresh running water
- Televisions and DVD players
- Functioning kitchens fitted with ovens, fridges, and hobs
- A full assortment of cookery and cutlery
- Linens and towels
- Heating and power
- Sufficient storage space for personal effects and ample parking
Regardless of whether you engage in cycling, sightseeing, shopping, or guided tours during the day, you’ll be able to retreat to a charming little cottage or bungalow each night to recharge your batteries. As you might imagine by now, booking a revitalising holiday getaway to the Peak District is the perfect way to experience all that the UK has to offer, so get started on your planning as soon as possible.