Taking just over three hours from Manchester Piccadilly to Glasgow Central, Scotland’s most populous city would surprise many. The port town is full of distinctive Victorian and art nouveau architecture, with a tremendous Gothic flavour that can be likened to many locations across continental Europe, not just the UK. Glasgow is brilliant 24 hours a day: spend daytimes wandering around one of the city’s many acclaimed museums, or at one of its two internationally famous football grounds; spend evenings in the revered National Theatre of Scotland, or in the city’s many restaurants and cafes; and perhaps most impressively of all, spend nights in and amongst Glasgow’s well and truly thriving music scene. Full of charismatic bars, pubs and musical venues, the city becomes a bustling cultural hub after sunset.
A village in East Yorkshire, Haworth is known for well-known as the location of the Brontë family home. The three Brontë sisters, Charlotte, Emily and Anne, made up an incredible literary family of contemporary writers. This great history is marked by the presence of the Brontë Parsonage Museum in their honour, and has been listed as a Grade 1 site of the National Heritage of England. How to get there is just as interesting in itself: after taking a regular Manchester train to the closest station in Keighley and catch the heritage steam engine valley railway, one of very few left in the country and filming location of The Railway Children, for a wonderful steam train journey, and lovely UK countryside sights too once aboard.
The UK’s capital city may be far, but is incredibly accessible. Trains straight from Manchester Piccadilly, which can be reasonably priced at off-peak times booked in advance, complete the 163 mile journey in around two hours. You could never run out of things to do or see in London, so there’s still plenty left for those who have already taken the most beaten paths of the city. For something different, try the V&A Museum for world class decorative art, stand in the pits for a show at the Globe Theatre, take in views from the top of St. Paul’s Cathedral or the striking ArcelorMittal Orbit tower sculpture, walk on glass panels over Tower Bridge as ships pass underneath, or delve into the Camden Town markets.
To those firmly identifying as northerner or southerner, the Midlands may remain a relative unknown, yet there are plenty of locations in the region crying out for a visit. Three in particular come to mind: Birmingham, Warwick, and Stratford-Upon-Avon, which can all be visited over a stay of a few days. Trains from Piccadilly to Birmingham, Britain’s second city, take under an hour and a half: other than the outstanding art gallery there’s Cadbury World to be found, and a secret garden on top of the library. From here take a short train to Warwick, for its iconic clifftop fortress castle and Charlecote Park; and again onto Stratford-Upon-Avon, for its Royal Shakespeare Theatre and other Shakespearean historical sites to see.
The Holy Island of Lindisfarne seem far away and notoriously inaccessible, but makes a great trip for anyone interested in the Humanities willing to make the journey. A car ride northwards and eastwards is undoubtedly the quickest and most convenient option, but the tidal island may also be accessed by public transport. A train from Manchester Piccadilly to Berwick-Upon-Tweed, right on the border, will take just over three hours including a train change in York: from here take the 477 bus southwards and across the causeway. Lindisfarne is absolute bombshell of rich, preserved UK history, all the way from 6AD, with ruins, priories, castles, lighthouses, unusual obelisks and time-old beacons all ready and waiting to be explored.
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