Well well well, hello Casanova. What are you up to, surfing the web in search of romantic getaways? We (that’s us, the experts here at Plum Guide) reckon that if you’re looking for a special time away with your loved one, it doesn’t get much better than the UK.
It’s got the perfect mix of beautiful, wild scenery (perfect for picnics and hikes), as well as plenty of culture and history in its many timeless cities. Whatever you’re after, this small little island sitting off the west coast of continental Europe has got you covered. As have we. Read on for more on the most romantic getaways in the UK.
Devon & Dorset
Tucked away in the south west of the UK, Devon & Dorset may as well be a separate country, given the amazing climate they enjoy throughout the summer months (the best time to visit). Seriously, who needs the Tenerife and the Mediterranean when you’ve got Lyme Regis?
Undoubtedly, what makes this area one of the best romantic getaways in the UK is its renowned coastline with its dramatic cliffs, beautiful little coves and sun-drenched beaches. Naturally, there are plenty of hikes and walks all along the coast which may or may not, depending on your tastes, be the perfect romantic day out. If you’re feeling particularly adventurous, there’s the South West Coastal Path that stretches for 630 (yes, six hundred and thirty) miles from Poole to Minehead. We have a feeling that one may take slightly longer than a day…
If all that walking sounds a bit too exhausting, why not hire out a boat for the day instead? You’ll find ample opportunity to do so in just about every seaside town you come across. There’s nothing better than being out on the turquoise blue water, lapping up the blazing sun. And who better to do that with than your loved one?
If you’re looking to turn up the romance dial, try a day out at the idyllic Lulworth Cove. This tiny little village feels like a model town that’s been built by giants. Stroll down to the cove past the cute and cosy little cottages, try to resist the exquisite dairy ice cream on offer (oh go on then) and take a dip in the sea. Just a half hour walk over the hill is Durdle Door – an iconic piece of the UK coastline that’s worth a snap or two at sunset.
If all of that sounds a little too outdoorsy for you, fear not. The UK has plenty of cities and towns that are ideal for a quick romantic getaway. Less walking, more shopping, eating and well, whatever else you fancy. Try Bath, for example.
Taking its name from the famous Roman baths in the town (only just built as recently as 43BC), it would seem rude not to spend some time here. Take a tour and walk through four different parts of the museum – the Sacred Spring, the Roman Temple, the Roman Bath House and Finds from Roman Bath. Unfortunately, you’re no longer allowed to bathe here.
That would be a shame, but we’ve got you covered. Head to Thermae Bath Spa, the UK’s original natural thermal spa. Book yourself in for a full spa session including massage and facials. Then, enjoy the open-air rooftop pool that offers stunning views out over this historic city. The pool remains open well into the night – all very romantic.
The city is not short of shopping, arts and crafts too. Try Pulteney Bridge, Victoria Art Gallery, Bath Guildhall Market, the Saturday antique & flea market or Bath street food market. If the weather’s good, don’t miss the opportunity to hire out a rowboat and make your way lazily down the River Avon. Is sweating and breathing heavily after struggling to row half a mile considered romantic? We’ll let you decide.
Heading across the border, the land of dragons is every bit as romantic as it is rugged and wild.
Explore ancient, mesmerising castles such as Caernarfon, Conway and Harlech. Get your walking boots on and get lost in the mountains of Snowdonia (just not so lost that the mountain rescue has to come looking. That’s not very romantic).
Mountains and a lake in Snowdonia National Park, Wales, UK
If some of the UK’s tallest peaks aren’t your thing, there are still plenty of other beautiful walks throughout the national parks. Take the Aberglaslyn Pass, for example. After a romantic hike around this stunning gorge, enjoy a well-earned pub lunch in the very pretty little village of Beddgelert. There are also plenty of other activities to try out such as rock climbing, mountain biking, white water rafting and even surfing in Betws-Y-Coed. Whatever you’re after, you can book a lesson for two and get stuck in together.
Feeling the strain just by reading this? Perhaps you’d rather spend your break in Cardiff, the Welsh capital and one of the UK’s best cities. Enjoy a spot of shopping at the Royal Arcade or Castle Quarter Arcade. Looking for a romantic dinner for two? Try Tempus At Tides. Overlooking Cardiff Bay, this is a fine dining experience (some of the very best Welsh cuisine right here) set within the grand surroundings of the five-star St David’s spa.
No list of romantic getaways in the UK would feel complete without mentioning Scotland. And where better to get away with your loved one than the old romantic city of Edinburgh? Some of the most romantic restaurants include The Honours (the French-Scottish cuisine you never knew you needed), New Chapter (impeccable service and perfect for a private dinner for two) or The Kitchin (won its first Michelin star after just six months of opening, which is funnily enough the same period of time you need to book a weekend reservation).
If the wine isn’t quite doing it, there’s plenty of whisky to be found in town. Here, you can enjoy tasting classes, blending and training sessions on a guided tour – all good fun and guaranteed to get the conversation flowing. If you’re looking for a date idea that's a little less hands-on, try Cameo, an old independent cinema (just 100 years old, to be exact) that shows one-offs, documentaries and classics.
The Royal Mile in the heart of Edinburgh's Old Town
Of course, it’d be rude not to take a little stroll hand in hand through the Old Town – the Scottish architecture here is picture perfect. There’s also the hike (definitely not a stroll) up to the top of Arthur’s Seat, an extinct volcano that’s bound to have things simmering with splendid views across the city.