Warmer weather is upon us, finally! Flowers are blooming, birds are singing and the grass is looking a little greener already. Britain has never looked better. If you’ve been considering a spring road trip, here’s a few of the best routes in the UK.
Snowdonia National Park
Wales is full of gorgeous landscapes, but there are a couple of particularly scenic routes for a road trip. Beginning in Conwy, one drive stretches 62 kilometres on the A470 to Portmeirion. Another starts at Wrexham and continues 29 miles to Bala, cutting through the lovely market town of Dolgellau. This drive leads you a plethora of natural wonders, including lush valleys, beautiful vistas, lakes and Wales’ second highest mountain, Cader Iris.
Follow the A592 from Ambleside and take in all the Lake District has to offer. You’ll enjoy Ullswater lake before heading towards Kirkstone Pass. The mountainous scenery won’t disappoint as you travel 14.5 miles to arrive at Pooley Bridge.
This one’s a lengthier drive, totalling two hours’ time, so make it a day trip if possible. Start at Hunstanton’s stunning cliffs and take the A149 to Great Yarmouth. On the way, pull over and browse the shops of Burnham Market, or you can stop for a boat trip at Blakeney. Be sure to spare some time at Potter Heigham to check out the medieval bridge on River Thurne.
Travel to York via Kirkbymoorside and take in 144 miles of amazing countryside. Take the A1079 towards Malton, stopping to check out York Minster and the Cleveland Way National Trail. Whitby’s Dracula Trail and Castle Howard are must-sees as well.
Travel 38 miles from Bakewell to Great Longstone through Derbyshire’s Snake Pass. Make sure you stop for a Bakewell tart - you might want to take one for the road, too. On the way, you’ll pass through Glossop and catch stunning views of Chatsworth Park.
Isle of Man
The Isle of Man is often plagued with bad weather, so some element of luck will be involved in taking a scenic road trip along its coast. Do a loop around the island, starting at Douglas and continuing past Peel castle as well as other picturesque, coastal towns. While not technically in the UK, this 75-mile journey’s just too good to leave off the list. On a clear day, you’ll even be able to see the peaks of Scotland.
Take in the best of Scotland, travelling nearly 200 miles from Inverness all the way to Durness. It’s a long haul, clocking in at about six hours, but worth the effort. You’ll drive through mountain passes and enjoy gorgeous scenery. To tackle this epic trip, start on the A835 out of Inverness, then join the A832 from Garve. For a stunning coastal route, hop back on the A835 at Dondennell.
There’s a reason why celebrities like Kate Moss and Lily Allen own property in the Cotswolds - it’s simply breathtaking. Travel on the M4, A429 and A417 to explore this area of natural beauty.
Before you hit the road, make sure you’ve got great music and someone special to enjoy the trip with. Plan ahead for frequent stops - you’ll need to stretch your legs every now and again, plus, how could you resist the urge to explore these stunning locales on foot, as well as behind the wheel?
It's important to carry out checks on your vitals before you head off on a big road trip. This includes checking your tire pressure, water levels, windscreen wash and oil. Don't forget to ensure your insurance is up-to-date and you have the breakdown details and claims numbers stored in your phone and written down on a notepad (in-case your battery runs out).
To make the most of your road trip, Lonely Planet recommends trying out regional foods on the way, like a full Scottish breakfast or traditional Yorkshire pies. Take detours as you like to customise the journey. Most importantly, roll down the windows and enjoy!