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best uk breaks for couples

From walking in the footsteps of literary greats to marvelling at the infinite web of stars in the clear night sky, our guide to the best UK breaks for couples is sure to spark some romance.

Spending time with a special loved one is more important now than ever, and we are truly spoilt for choice with lots of romantic places to visit on home soil. When the weekend rolls around, you and your partner can set your sights on the rolling hills of the Yorkshire Dales or the lesser-known delights of Shropshire.

Read on to discover our carefully compiled list of the 10 best UK breaks for couples for 2021…

1. North Wales & Snowdonia

Topping our list of romantic places in the UK is the beautiful region of North Wales and the Snowdonia National Park. A stay here has something for all couples, with imposing mountains, blissful beaches and tranquil lakes, all resting within easy touring distance.

Llanddwyn Island Lighthouse

Why couples love it

Adventurous couples will thrive on a romantic getaway to the awe-inspiring landscapes of Snowdonia National Park. From the idyllic and traditional towns and villages of Bala and Betws-y-Coed to the former slate quarry town of Blaenau Ffestiniog, there is a plethora of outdoor pursuits to discover. Here, couples can embark on abseiling, zip-lining, and gorge walking, all whilst admiring many breath-taking waterfalls and unrivalled panoramas along the way.

For a steadier pace of life, travel to the quaint and characterful town of Llangollen and discover the Horseshoe Falls, Castell Dinas Bran and the striking stately home of Plas Newydd. Alternatively, venture down to the coast to find the colourful town of Llandudno and spend your days wandering alongside the grand Victorian dwellings that line the bay.

Across the water, the spectacular Isle of Anglesey possesses many unspoilt beaches and stupendous coastal walks, including a hike to the small tidal island of Ynys Llanddwyn, said to be the home of St. Dwynwen, the patron saint of Welsh lovers.

Start planning your next holiday to North Wales with the help of our handy North Wales travel guide.

2. North York Moors

Taking second place for the best UK breaks for couples is the majestic North Yorkshire Moors. Boasting a labyrinth of moods, from the tranquil coast to the windswept moors, you and your partner are sure to have a wonderful break here.

 North York Moors, Yorkshire

Why couples love it

Littered with fishing ports and bustling market towns, in North Yorkshire, you are sure to unravel an intriguing tale or two. Discover the haunts of the notorious smugglers who once lived in Robin Hood’s Bay, a pretty seaside community to discover on your next romantic getaway. Look forward to a tour of the now more peaceful twisting streets and hidden alleyways, before discovering the sweeping bay views.

Whitby is another superb base for a couple’s UK break, with its beautiful beach and collection of landmarks. Climb the famous 199 steps to the ruins of Whitby Abbey before sampling the delicious famous fish and chips that this town is famed for.

Begin planning your next getaway with the help of our North Yorkshire travel guide

3. Cumbria & the Lake District

Filled with timeless landscapes, shimmering lakes and gentle rolling hills, Cumbria truly encapsulates romance. With so much to see and do, its stunning national park takes third place for best UK breaks for couples.

The Lake District, Cumbria

Why couples love it

Resting in the South Lakeland District of Cumbria, the lively town of Bowness-on-Windermere provides a wonderful setting for a romantic staycation. Head out onto Windermere, the largest lake within the national park, and enjoy a relaxing boat ride across the waters with your significant other, ahead of a gentle stroll up Orrest Head. Wine and dine in one of the upscale restaurants dotted around the town or indulge in a Michelin Star meal at The Old Stamp House over in Ambleside.

Travel west to the remote glacial lake Ennerdale Water for a truly unique and peaceful day with your loved one or set about on a romantic stroll. Choose between a plethora of picturesque pub walks in the Lake District, where you can linger over a well-deserved pint afterwards.

For more inspiration, take a look at our extensive Lake District travel guide!

4. Cornwall

Enjoying sub-tropical temperatures and beautiful clifftops that overlook sugary shores, it’s little wonder the picturesque peninsula of Cornwall is a popular choice for couples seeking a romantic escape.


Why couples love it

Couples seeking an action-packed break by the sea should venture to the vibrant town of Newquay, which rests on the Atlantic coast. Renowned for its epic surf scene, with a choice of five glorious beaches, as well as a whole host of attractions and activities, bring your loved one to Newquay to share a fun-filled escape. Add romance to this exciting trip and soak up the stupendous sea views from the incredible Towan Headland – a great spot from which to watch the sunset.

The pretty boating lake and well-manicured lawns of Terrance Gardens are a must throughout your stay, and there’s ample opportunity to delight in a romantic meal for two with a plethora of independent restaurants and quirky bars spilling out onto the streets.

To the south, the glorious Lizard Peninsula will have you convinced you’re abroad with the stunning scenery of Kynance Cove and the National Trust owned Lizard Point. Alternatively, venture inland, where the charming village of Dobwalls is surrounded by the luscious Cornish countryside with the magnificent cascading waters of Golitha Falls and Cardinham Woods right on your doorstep!

Dreaming of this romantic place in the UK? Check out our Cornwall travel guide for more holiday inspiration.

5. Yorkshire Dales

Next on our guide to romantic places in the UK is the captivating Yorkshire Dales National Park. You and your partner can look forward to a holiday filled with breath-taking scenery, imposing castles, dramatic waterfalls and an unmatched atmosphere.

Scaleber Waterfall

Why couples love it

From taking to the windswept landscapes to marvelling at the stars in one of Britain’s Dark Sky areas, you and your partner are sure to enjoy a holiday to this national park.

Avid ramblers can relish in the atmospheric limestone landscape, with miles of rolling footpaths amidst peaceful valleys and rolling hills. As well as excellent hiking trails, this romantic place in the UK plays host to many a natural wonder, including the impressive Scaleber Force, Ingleton Falls and Malham Cove. Take a browse through our Yorkshire Dales walking guide to find the perfect path to enjoy with your loved one.

For places to stay, the historic market town of Richmond comes highly recommended for UK breaks for couples. Meander its beautiful collection of medieval buildings and Georgian façades, before visiting the cobbled square, home to a weekly market and a monthly farmers’ market. Afterwards, brush up on the local history further with a visit to the ancient Norman fortress perched high above the River Swale or stroll to the ruins of Easby Abbey.

Ingleton is another great spot for enjoying a romantic holiday, where the awe-inspiring backdrop of Ingleborough awaits, as well as one of the famous Three Peaks. Alternatively, the vibrant market town of Settle and the magnificent Kirby Lonsdale offers a romantic base for touring further afield.

Uncover more great destinations with the help of our places to stay in the Yorkshire Dales guide

6. Peak District

Fall head over heels for the contrasting natural beauty, rolling green hills and historic houses of the Peak District National Park. Offering a world of contrasting beauty, you can truly create your own love story amidst the countryside that inspired Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

Peak District

Why couples love it

Here, you can follow in the footsteps of the literary greats amidst landscapes of wild moorland, deep dales and endearing caverns. From sharing a locally made bottle of wine to exploring storybook villages, there are plenty of romantic things to do here.

Chatsworth House doubled up as Pemberley, the residence of Mr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice. In reality, this romantic stately home is the residence of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire and is open for you to discover. The grand house is surrounded by a 1,000-acre park on the banks of the River Derwent, where you can enjoy a romantic picnic by the river, before being captivated by the Emperor Fountain.

Another romantic thing to do here is to sample local award-winning wines and explore the beautiful family-run vineyards. The Renishaw Hall & Gardens vineyard and Amber Valley Vineyards are two exceptional local producers, where you can pick up the essential ingredient to any romantic meal.

Alternatively, whisk away your partner to the beautiful town of Matlock, once famed for its hydro and spa treatments. Today, you can explore its cluster of fine restaurants, bars and independent shops, or head to the Heights of Abraham for panoramic views of the Derwent Valley! In Buxton, you can look forward to taking a step back in time, whilst Bakewell is sure to be a little sweeter with its famous tart to taste!

Find even more romantic places to stay with our free Peak District travel guide

7. East Anglia

Home to Lovers Lane, sparkling rivers and quintessential English countryside, it is little surprise that East Anglia made our romantic places in the UK list. Bring your partner to the lush landscape that inspired famous painters Constable and Gainsborough on your next UK break.

Norfolk windmill

Why couples love it

Spend quality time exploring the diverse landscape of the Broads National Park, made up of over 60 open areas of water. One of the defining features of the Broads is the many characterful windmills dotted across the countryside. The windmills were once used to grind corn and flour, however, today provide a stunning focal point to your landscape shots.

Romantics will be inspired by the languid sunsets and open skies that affords a clear connection with the infinite web of constellations. Simply lie back to admire the unpolluted skies or visit the Seething Observatory on the edge of the park for the best stargazing opportunities. Those feeling adventurous, take to the waters on a sailboat or kayak, where if you’re lucky, you can catch a glimpse of the wingspan of a heron or the rustle of an otter onshore.

A quintessential romantic place in the UK is the university city of Cambridge, brimming with culture and impressive wonder. As you drift leisurely down the River Cam on a chauffeured punt, it takes little imagination to believe that you’re perched on a gondola in Renaissance-inspired Venice! Afterwards, meander the large collection of art galleries or stand in awe of the architectural triumphs of King’s College Chapel, Bridge of Sighs at St John’s and the Fitzwilliam Museum.

8. Heart of England

From the dream-like setting of Oxfordshire to the ever-charming landscape of Shropshire, the Heart of England is one of the best UK breaks for couples.

Anne Hathaway's Cottage in Shottery

Why couples love it

One of the many highlights of the Heart of England is the romanticised Tudor architecture of Stratford-upon-Avon. Resting on the banks of Avon River and famed for being the birthplace of William Shakespeare, there is a wealth of culture to uncover. Immerse yourself in British literature, with the tales of Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Midsummer Night Dream and more showcased at the RSC. Also, explore where the world’s greatest dramatist courted his wife at Anne Hathaway’s Cottage, before refuelling at its eclectic foodie scene!

The idyllic setting of Oxfordshire also sees couples flock to holiday within the Heart of England with a skyline pierced by palaces, spires and domes. Here, you could venture into the city of Oxford, meander through the stony villages of Chipping Norton and Witney or revel in retail therapy with a visit to Bicester’s designer outlets.

Alternatively, there are the lesser-known wonders of Shropshire to uncover with your partner. In this landlocked county, romantic hills, endless walks, majestic castles and glistening rivers await you. Market towns and quaint villages are in abundance here too, including Shrewsbury, Ludlow, Much Wenlock and Church Stretton.

9. Scottish Highlands

When it comes to the best UK breaks for couples, few places capture the imagination quite like the Highlands of Scotland. Get off the beaten track to enjoy the most beautiful Scottish lochs, mysterious mountains and some of the most majestic castles in the world!

Glenfinnan Railway Viaduct, Scottish Highlands

Why couples love it

From dolphins frolicking off the Moray Coast to walking in the shadow of Britain’s highest mountain, it is easy to see why couples flock here.

Couples seeking a city escape where breath-taking landscapes are just moments away, the Highland capital may be for you. Inverness plays host to an array of hidden gems, including the historical landmarks of the Battle of Culloden and Clava Cairns. Alternatively, you could escape the crowds and meander the Inverness Botanic Gardens, where you can unwind amidst this little oasis.

For couples feeling adventurous, take to the North Coast 500, one of the best scenic drives, which takes you to the most northerly coastal points in mainland Britain. Highlights along the route include Cape Wrath, the village of John o’ Groats and the stunning Achmelvich Beach, undoubtedly one of the UK’s most exotic beaches.

Other Scottish Highland highlights include Loch Ness, the Glenfinnan Viaduct and the snow-draped peak of Ben Nevis.

Uncover more superb things to do with the help of your Scotland travel guide

10. South Wales & Pembrokeshire

Concluding our best UK breaks for couples is the beautiful setting of South Wales and Pembrokeshire. This part of the UK truly has something for everyone, from an exciting city break, to relaxing moments on the beach to action-packed getaways.

Tenby Harbour, South Wales

Why couples love it

One of South Wales’ highlights is the young and creative capital of Cardiff, a hub of culture and great things to do. Set at the heart of the city is its castle, set within beautiful parklands that was created for the world’s richest man. Today, you can explore the once Roman fort that was transformed into a Victorian Gothic fantasy palace, so you can expect a wealth of elaborate murals, furnishings and stained glass windows.

The city centre itself is superb for shopping, whilst Cardiff Bay is littered with exceptional bars and eateries, as well as a bustling marina. Be sure to venture to the seaside town of Barry Island, famed for BBC’s comedy series, Gavin and Stacey. Here, you can look forward to its golden beach, colourful beach huts, family amusements and the finest fish and chips around!

Otherwise, travel further along the wonder-filled coast, to find the endearing seaside towns of Saundersfoot and Tenby, before reaching the Pembrokeshire National Park. Despite being the smallest UK national park, this area boasts a diverse landscape. It is also internationally recognised for its wide range of high-quality habitats and rare species. Here, you will find something for all couples, from high-energy watersport opportunities and to relishing in some of the best coastal walks in South Wales.

Our South Wales travel guide is sure to inspire you to secure your next UK romantic getaway.

If you are looking to get away with the children this year, our guide to the top family-friendly destinations for 2021 is sure to inspire. Alternatively, take your canine companion on holiday this year with the help of our top dog-friendly destinations in the UK

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