10 Best Places to Visit in the UK in February

January 16, 2024 in Destinations, Routes, Tips for Travellers, England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales & United Kingdom

It’s time to reward yourself for all the work you’ve done since returning from your Christmas break! You can’t be expected to wait until summer, and it’s vital for your well-being to take regular short breaks. So embark on a micro-adventure this February and explore a new part of the UK.

Let’s consider your best options for where to go on holiday in February. From the mountains of the Cambrian Way to the thatched roofs of the Cotswolds, we’ll cover the most popular destinations to visit at this time of year. We’ve got the best things to do in February, so you can stop dreaming and start booking!

1. York, England

There is something quintessentially British about York. The city is filled with winding streets, a myriad of shops and restaurants, and a deep history to unravel as you go. The surrounding region of Yorkshire is one of the most beautiful places in the UK, filled with rolling hills and lush forests.

It is the perfect destination for walkers, as York itself was voted the UK’s 2nd-most walkable city in 2023 by CityDays, and the nearby landscape is also ideal for hill walking. So grab your boots and stretch your legs; it’s time to head to York!

Things to do:

-Explore the Shambles, which many believe to be the inspiration for Diagon Alley, or at least eerily similar. Follow this with a visit to York’s Castle Museum or climbing Clifford’s Tower. And if you don’t scare too easily (or even if you do), sign up for the Ghost Trail of York.

-Head to Spurn Point in East Yorkshire. Described by the Wildlife Trust as ‘Yorkshire’s very own Land’s End’, this constantly moving peninsula in the North Sea is never the same on two trips. You’ll find solitude like no other, simply listening to the screech of sea birds and gently lapping waves.

-If you’ve brought your pup along for your trip, head to one of the best dog-friendly beaches in the area: Runswick Bay. Located in the stunning North York Moors National Park, this pup-friendly beach stretches between Whitby and Staithes. This beach is also part of the Cleveland Way National Trail, so you could make this a stop on a larger walk.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

2. The Cambrian Way, Wales

For your February getaway, embark on one of the best mountainous road trips in the UK. Summer is a great time to visit the coast, so use winter to explore the incredible mountains of the UK. The Cambrian Way cuts through the heart of Wales, taking you from the north to the south over 185 miles of incredible scenery. 

Most of it requires you to simply follow the A470, but prepare for some increasingly wild and rugged sections. You can easily combine this route with a stop in the capital city of Cardiff, or extend it with a stay in Snowdonia National Park.

Things to do:

-Visit the ‘Welsh Lake District,’ also known as the Elan Valley. It’s considered to be a stargazer’s paradise, perfect for a night spent outdoors. It is further known for its huge dams and flowing rivers, ideal for hiking.

-Bring your bikes or rent some once there, as there are plenty of excellent biking trails in this region. In particular, head to Coed Y Brenin Forest for the best cycle routes.

-Head to Blaenau Ffestiniog. This town and the surrounding region were granted World Heritage Status in 2021 to recognise its mining legacy. You can take a tour of the nearby Llechwedd Mine to learn more about the history of this area.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

3. Norfolk, England

Every year, visitors flock to the UK just to visit the stunning region of Norfolk, which is considered by many to be one of the most scenic landscapes in the world. You’ll quickly understand why once you take in the 280 miles of protected coastline, which has been classified as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Things to do:

-A rainy day can easily be spent in the Museum of the Broads, which features plenty of interesting exhibits. You can learn about the history of the region, including the First World War, the M&GN Railway, and the brewery industry. 

-While in Norfolk, set aside a few hours to spend at the beach. You’ll have plenty of options, including Holkham Beach, Mundesley Beach and Horsey Beach. 

-Spend a day in the bustling city of Norwich. Its remote location caused it to miss a lot of the Industrial Revolution, so the Tudor ambience of the town largely remains. You can visit many Medieval churches here, as well as the renowned Norwich Cathedral and Norwich Castle.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

4. Edinburgh, Scotland

Visiting Edinburgh isn’t your typical city trip, as the Scottish capital is actually one of the UK’s most beautiful cities. Filled with cobbled streets, colourful buildings, a historic old town and a lively music scene, this is a great contender for where to go on holiday in February.

If your trip gets some unfortunate grey weather, you can easily seek shelter in one of the many museums and galleries that showcase the best of Edinburgh. You’ll also find plenty of excellent independent stores, cafes, antique shops, and pubs around the city.

Things to do:

-Looking to stretch your legs? There is plenty of walking to be done in Edinburgh, but if you’re looking for a longer walk, hike up to Arthur’s Seat. From here, you’ll get an unparalleled view of the city. 

-Travelling with any Potterheads? Take them on the Potter Trail, a free tour of several locations that inspired the famous magical book series. 

-If you’re looking for an indoor activity, then we’ve got two great options for you. The National Museum of Modern Art features works by both Picasso and Matisse, and you can easily lose hours wandering through its stunning halls. If that’s not quite right for you, consider a visit to The Edinburgh Dungeon, for a spooky trip to the past, where you can learn a lot about the darker side of Edinburgh.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

5. The Cotswolds, England

We love to visit the Cotswolds all year round, but one of the perks of going in February is how quiet and tranquil it will be. This place is magical, with picturesque cottages that have ivy creeping up their walls and cobblestoned paths leading up to them. You almost expect the trees to have faces and the birds to start singing.

This is one of the best weekend trips from London, and perfect if you’ve only got a night or two to spare. 

Things to do:

-Rumour has it that the breathtaking St Edward’s Church in Stow-on-the-Wold inspired J.R.R Tolkien’s Doors of Durin. Tolkien took numerous trips to the Cotswolds, and the similarity is definitely noticeable. Either way, it’s a beautiful church that looks straight out of a fairytale.

-As one of the most dog-friendly places in the UK, we recommend bringing your pup along to the Cotswolds. You’ll find many great dog walking routes, such as Cleeve Hill, which is the highest point in the Cotswolds, offering incredible views over Cheltenham and the surrounding landscape. We also have a dog-friendly guide to the Cotswolds, for more tips!

-Spend an afternoon in the ancient market town of Stow-on-the-Wold. It’s one of the most beautiful towns in the Cotswolds. You’ll find plenty of cosy cafes and independent shops to visit, ideal for finding shelter in the rain.Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

6. Cardiff, Wales

When you’re considering where to go on holiday in February, a city trip may quickly spring to mind. If you’re looking to lose yourself in the bustle of a new city, then head to Cardiff. This is a great city to visit with the whole family, or even on your own. 

It was voted one of the ‘World’s Top 10 Must-Visit Cities’ by Lonely Planet, and is considered Europe’s third-best capital city to live in. Within Cardiff, you can get a taste of history, arts, science and a surprising amount of nature.

Things to do:

-Cardiff is known as the ‘City of Castles,’ so be sure to visit some during your trip. A popular choice is St. Fagan’s Castle, which is part of the St. Fagan’s National History Museum. Nestled in the heart of the city, you’ll find the magnificent Cardiff Castle. This towering stone structure has stood for almost 2,000 years and is open for tours throughout the week.

-Were you a Roald Dahl fan as a child? The famous author was actually born and raised in Cardiff. While here, you can visit Roald Dahl Plass, which was named after him. It’s home to the Senedd (Welsh Parliament Building) and the Wales Millennium Centre.

-Take a trip to the nearby Flat Holm Island. This Welsh island has a long history of occupation, dating back to the Bronze Age at the latest. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and great for spotting wildlife, including herring gulls, black-backed gulls and more.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

7. Dartmoor National Park, England

Dartmoor National Park is known for its wide open spaces and complete tranquillity. It’s the perfect place to recover from the hectic nature of the festive period and January, making it one of the best places to visit in the UK in February.

You’ll quickly forget the woes of daily life, and be surrounded by incredible natural beauty. Dartmoor National Park happens to be one of the best places to visit in the UK in winter. It’s likely that you won’t run into many people during this quieter period, as long as you don’t count the wild ponies roaming around.

Things to do:

-You’ll find no better way to take in the stunning Dartmoor landscape than a hike. From Bellever Forest in central Dartmoor, you can take an exhilarating walk to the granite outcrop of Bellever Tor. This is best followed by a picnic by the East Dart River — so you can catch your breath!

-There are three prehistoric sites worth visiting in Dartmoor, all of which are English Heritage sites: Merrivale Prehistoric Settlement, Grimspound, and the Upper Plym Valley. This is the best way to discover what was happening on the moor over 4,000 years ago and fit a bit of education into your holiday.

-Looking for things to do in Dartmoor in February? Oh, how about visiting some adorable little otters? At Buckfast Butterfly Farm and Dartmoor Otter Sanctuary, you can see these little guys up close and know they’re being well cared for.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

8. Isle of Skye, Scotland

There is something truly magical about the Isle of Skye. Renowned for its rich history, picturesque landscapes, majestic ruins and endless beaches, the Isle of Skye is too spectacular to only be visited during the summer months. It is filled with great things to do in February, as long as you wrap up warm and bring a dry set of clothes!

Things to do:

-Quiraing is considered to be a must-visit for both hiking and photography enthusiasts. The views from the top of this challenging climb are unlike anything you’ve ever seen. The region was formed as a result of a landslip, resulting in high cliffs and plateaus. The path is roughly 4.2 miles long, and takes two hours to complete without any breaks. But be warned: this is not for inexperienced hikers!

-Warm up from the chilly weather with a good, strong drink. Located in Carbost, Talisker Distillery is the island’s oldest working distillery. You can take a tour of the facilities to learn all about how their whisky is made and taste their award-winning Talisker Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

-At Armadale Castle, Gardens and Museum, you can learn more about the Macdonalds of Sleat, Scotland’s oldest and most powerful clan. The gardens are just as impressive, comprised of 40 acres of trees, flowers, and shrubs. Parts of the garden are just as old as the castle, and you can learn all about it in the audio guide available.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

9. Cairngorms National Park, Scotland

This is one of the most beautiful national parks in Scotland, if not the whole of the UK. It’s an ideal and one of the best weekend trips from Edinburgh or can be easily combined with a visit to the capital city of Scotland. 

Aside from being one of the largest national parks in the UK, the Cairngorms are renowned for hill walking, biking, bird watching, photography and more. You might even catch some snow while you’re there, so be sure to prepare for winter camping in a motorhome.

Things to do:

-Dust off your walking boots and tackle one of the many great hiking routes in the Cairngorms. If you’re looking for a shorter and easier hike, try the Falls of Bruar, which is only one and a half miles. Or, for more of a challenge, attempt the four trails of Muir of Dinnet, which are eight miles in total.

-Looking to take a week off your February road trip? Then you’ve got more than enough time to complete the Snow Roads Scenic Route road trip! This 90-mile journey takes you through the best of the Cairngorms National Park and along picturesque villages and woods.

-The Cairngorms are one of the best places in Scotland to see the Northern Lights, so give it a go. We recommend parking far away from trees in a northern direction or heading to the Glenlivet Estate, which is known for its dark-sky events.
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in February

10. Belfast, Northern Ireland

One place that will never run out of things to do in February is Belfast. This bustling city is known for its grungy atmosphere, which people seem to either love or hate. Well, we love it, and we have no doubt that you will too!

A major aspect of Belfast is the difficult history and challenges faced, and how the citizens have overcome these and built a home for arts, culture and knowledge. There is so much to learn and experience in Belfast, and it’s the perfect city trip for a weekend.

Things to do:

-You’ve likely seen the film starring Leonard DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, so why not learn the real story behind this infamous ship at the Titanic Experience? Follow it with a stroll through the Titanic Quarter, where you can experience a large-scale waterfront regeneration, consisting of historic maritime landmarks, film studios, entertainment services and more.

-Foodies will adore St George’s Market, which is situated in a gorgeous Victorian building and offers fresh local produce, arts and crafts, live music and more. The perfect place to spend a cold February evening!

-Your trip to Belfast doesn’t need to be expensive, as you can take a free walking tour to learn more about the history and culture of Belfast. Let a local teach you all about this vibrant city, and experience the places you wouldn’t think to visit. Often, you’ll get an introduction to the local mysteries and legends as well. Alternatively, you could take an organised tour through Game of Thrones filming locations or make one yourself using the many lists online. This is a great way to discover more about the city. 
Best places to visit in the UK in February getaway things to do in FebruaryTen great destinations to visit in February, spread across the entire UK. Challenge yourself to explore somewhere new on your latest adventure, and discover incredible places to fall in love with. Whether you end up climbing Snowdonia, resting by a fireplace in the Cotswolds, or exploring the bustling streets of Belfast, let this be a February getaway to remember.

Don’t forget that everywhere is better explored behind the wheel of a motorhome. Hire one through Goboony, and let the adventure begin!