If you missed your mates on your last solo trip, a group getaway is just the ticket. Group trips in the UK are not only more convenient (and frequently cheaper) than a holiday abroad, but they are also a great eco-friendly travel option if you are trying to cut down on flying.
There are plenty of options for group accommodation in some of the UK’s most beautiful spots, from cottages in small towns to cabins right in the middle of the forest. Get together a group of friends or family and head to one of our favourite places for group getaways in the UK.
Culture-rich Glasgow is one of the UK’s best cities for a group trip. Splinter off to check out what’s on at the Gallery of Modern Art, catch a show at Citizen’s Theatre, or jump on the train to Pollock Country Park for a taste of greenery before meeting up for a late-night drink at The Old Hairdresser’s. While central Glasgow has a number of budget options for groups, such as renting family homes or hostels, we recommend staying just outside the city to expand your options.
Trip highlight: An afternoon at Mono, the combination vegan cafe, art gallery, music venue, and record shop.
The Forest of Dean, tucked in next to the sprawling greenery of the Wye Valley in Gloucestershire, is one of England’s most beautiful woodlands. There are a number of easy hikes — ideal for a group of different athletic abilities — as well as intimate local pubs. Visitors can pick from a wide range of accommodation, like large refurbished cabins with hot tubs or cosy cottages for small groups.
Trip highlight: A group hike along the popular Sculpture Trail, a winding 7km path through the forest dotted with nature-inspired sculptures and art installation pieces.
Just a stone’s throw from Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds and Liverpool, the diverse Peak District National Park is a great option for city dwellers looking to get into nature. Explore the miles of cycling trails, special village trails through the park’s small communities, and nature trails, which the park service is working to make more and more accessible for those with limited mobility. You’ll find a selection of beautiful properties to rent for groups, from converted barns to old-school manor houses to more budget-friendly family homes.
Trip highlight: A tour through Chatsworth House, a restored manor house known as the “Palace of the Peak”.
For a more adrenaline-seeking bunch, head to the Brecon Beacons mountain range (easily accessed from both Swansea and Cardiff). Walk or cycle the wild paths beneath towering mountains by day, and enjoy unparalleled stargazing at night, due to the park’s minimally light-polluted dark skies. Check out the many accommodation options both near the park and in the surrounding area, like a refurbished medieval barn or a stone-roofed country house.
Trip highlight: If you’re up to the challenge, the iconic climb up Pen y Fan, the highest peak in south Wales, rewards you with excellent views.
What better place to enjoy the sea breeze than Cornwall, Southern England’s top seaside spot. Look down at the crashing waves from the famed ruins of Tintagel Castle, walk out to St. Michael’s Mount at low tide, or just relax with your friends by the water with fish and chips in hand. To make the most of your trip, book a stay in one of the area’s many historical buildings, like a restored Victorian farmhouse or a stone cottage right on the seafront.
Trip highlight: Watching the seasoned surfers at Fistral Beach in Newquay (or even trying it out yourself).
Looking to take a trip but low on annual leave days? A weekend break is the answer. Gather your friends and head off on a mini holiday to destinations just a quick train ride or budget flight away. From sunbathing on the French coast to hiking in the Black Forest, here are our top choices for group weekend breaks
Bulgaria may not be the first place you think of to take a ski holiday, but with its bargain prices on everything from equipment rental to group accommodation, it’s ideal for a budget getaway with friends. A weekend ski pass for 2-3 days of skiing can be found for as little as £50 – £90, a great deal less than what you’d pay at big-name ski resorts in France and Switzerland. There are also round-trip flights going for under £30 from major UK airports to hub cities in Bulgaria throughout the winter, and sometimes it’s even possible to book last-minute holidays at those prices!
For a journey that’s just as beautiful as the destination, hop on the Eurostar from London to the colourful city of Freiburg. After a little under 8 hours travel through the picturesque French countryside, disembark to explore the narrow streets lined with pastel houses with a wurst in hand. The real reason to head to Freiburg, however, is the proximity to the Black Forest and its many hiking trails. Our top choice: the meandering Bresgau wine path, which takes you through vineyards and small villages where your group can stop and sample the local offerings.
Another eco-friendly travel choice, the proximity of this French seaside town allows you to minimise your travel time and maximise your beach time. Le Touquet is only about 3 hours from London by train, but boasts beautiful wide golden beaches to stretch out and take in the sun. You can find group accommodation a stone’s throw from the beach for less than £20 per person per night, leaving you more money to spend on local seafood specialties or nights out at the many bars and clubs in the area.
If you’re looking for a city break that won’t break the bank, Budapest is a clear winner. You’ll find drinks at less than a pound a pint, delicious street food like sugary chimney cakes and crispy lángos (fried bread), and group accommodation for less than £10 per person per night right in the city centre. There are also plenty of group-friendly activities: plan an afternoon at the thermal baths, where you and your mates can relax and soak for hours, then head over to Szimpla Kert, an old factory building that has been converted into a pub and open-air cinema.