If you’re thinking of holidaying in the UK, this section will provide practical and hopefully useful information on travel, geography and culture.
The United Kingdom (UK) is made up of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and is one of the 27 member states of the European Union (EU). It is only 35 km from France and can be reached by train via the Channel Tunnel.
For the best advice and information on visiting Great Britain please go to www.visitbritain.com
Travelling to Britain by Air
There are 5 London airports, but another 24 scattered across the UK. Most international flights fly into London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Belfast and these airports have good links with public transport networks.
Travelling Around Britain by Train
It is worth noting that rail and coach fares booked in advance on the internet can sometimes be over 50% cheaper than buying the fare at the station. You could visit www.thetrainline.com for information on rail fares. Road networks are also good in the UK, with very few tolls on the motorways (so‐called M roads). There is a congestion charge in place in central London which is £5.00 per day between the hours of 7am ‐ 6.30pm. There are two types of taxis, the black cab, which can be stopped in the street, and the private taxi, which must be booked in advance.
“Driving around Britain is one of the best ways to see the country. Explore the deserted rugged coastlines of the United Kingdom that sweep you along gentle curves and offer you places to stop and admire nature at it’s best. You will find a variety of toll roads ranging from 5.00 GBP to 12.00 GBP so plan your route carefully and make the decision beforehand if a toll road would suit you better than the free route, or if driving the longer way around London via the M25 to avoid the toll charge is applicable to your journey. For the best rates on car hire, visit www.VroomVroomVroom.co.uk to compare all the major suppliers.”
You are strongly advised to take out adequate insurance before travelling to The UK. There are no vaccinations required to enter the UK but some may be required when returning to your home country from the UK so it is advisable to check with your doctor before travelling. In the event of an emergency dial 999 and you will receive free treatment from the Accident and Emergency department of the nearest National Health Service hospital. Further treatment could be chargeable so please see www.direct.gov.uk for further information.
The British unit of currency is Sterling, the units are called pounds and pence. Foreign currency can easily be exchanged at banks, post offices, some hotels and Bureau de Change kiosks, which are found at international airports and most city centres. To see today’s exchange rate visit the Financial Times currencies website www.ft.com/markets/currencies. There are rules about how much currency can be brought into the UK from abroad so please check the UK Customs and Excise website (www.hmrc.gov.uk).
The climate in the UK is quite temperate with warm summers (June to August) and cold winters (December to February). Temperatures range between freezing in winter and up to around 30 degrees in summer. The UK does get quite a bit of rainfall so if visiting outside of the summer months it is advisable to bring a waterproof jacket.
Places of Interest
The UK is rich in historical landmarks. From the medieval castle and the birth place of Shakespeare in Warwickshire, to the Roman‐built Hadrian’s Wall in Northumbria, to the sights and cultural wealth of cities such as London and Edinburgh, the challenge is selecting what to visit. Visit Britain (www.visitbritain.com) is a good website to explore your options and has been translated into multiple languages. Whether you choose to visit a major city or escape to the beautifully verdant British countryside we are confident that you will find the perfect accommodation amongst the Pride of Britain hotels.