Autumn gold takes on the winter blues
It’s time to celebrate autumn in Britain. This year our trees are promising the most spectacular season.
After the damp spring and plenty of sunshine since, our woodlands and forests are set to give us a blazingly colourful finale to the year in the countryside.
They say beautiful autumn colours improve your mood so why not prepare for those dark, damp days ahead with a weekend in the woods. The Westonbirt National Arboretum, in Gloucestershire, has a treetop walkway to put you in amongst the colours. Faskally Woods, in Perthshire, is hosting its Enchanted Forest light and sound show. Bodnant Gardens, Colwyn Bay, shows off its Champion Trees in a stunning setting overlooking Snowdonia and there’s the world famous Stourhead, in Wiltshire, where the trees’ incandescent colour is reflected in the lake. There are many more, see www.visitwoods.org.uk.
So let’s get out there. Let’s make the most of what’s on offer. There’s still so much to see and do.
And it is so easy to find first-rate places to stay and enjoy the British and Irish way of life. Use our brochure of bed and breakfast accommodation – The Little Green Book – and websites www.bedandbreakfastnationwide.com for B&B homes and www.holidaycottagesnationwide.co.uk for self-catering.
All the B&Bs and cottages have been specially selected to ensure that they provide high quality accommodation. They range from country cottages to town houses, manor houses to farm houses – all offering a warm welcome and good value. The hosts are all keen to promote their part of the country and suggest fun days out and how best to get there.
Have you seen the Northern Lights? If not, why not this year? The Dark Sky Park, in Galloway, might be just the place. And before things get too wild, there’s time to enjoy Scotland’s beaches. Sango Bay, in the far north, Sea Cliff, overlooking Bass Rock, and Big Sands, Gairloch, jostle for prime position with so many. See www.visitscotland.com.
Celebrate the life and work of Roald Dahl with a suitably spooky Hallowe’en at Tatton Park or mark the return of the Spooktacular at Longleat. Bath remembers the genius of Mozart while tempting you with the Great Bath Feast. And wet your whistle in Bristol at the ‘city of cider’s’ Apple Day. See www.visitengland.com.
Swansea’s Internatioinal Festival is a highlight of autumn in Wales along with the Dylan Thomas Festival, in Cardiff. The ‘land of castles’ – there are 500 – shimmers in the soft, autumn sunlight, while a stroll along the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is a real autumn tonic. See www.visitwales.com.
In Ireland, the Wild Atlantic Way is as wild as ever and the Causeway Coastal Route is still as majestic. Powercourt Estate, in County Wicklow, has joined the Top Ten Houses of the World. And the Boyne Valley is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, older than Stonehenge and the pyramids. See www.visitireland.com.
Some more ideas…
1 – Nov 6 Blackpool Illuminations
5 – 9 Edinburgh Oktoberfest
8 World Porridge Making Championships, Inverness shire
11 World Conker Championships, Northants
15 – 26 Crumlin Road Gaol Ghost Hunt, Belfast
22 – 23 Gwledd Conwy Feast
22 – 30 Welsh Museums Festival
9 – 10 Colours of Cluny, Morayshire
10 – 14 Ennis Trad. Festival, Co. Clare
15 – 20 Abertoir Horror Festival, Aberystwyth
16 – 20 Dundee Jazz Festival
17 – 20 Kendal Mountain Festival
…November 5th The Biggest Bonfire Celebration in the World, Lewes.
…and even more in our Days Out Diary.