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The Nation's Favourite Days Out

Bradford Wilsden Viaduct

We wanted to uncover the types of attractions that us Brits prefer to explore, and so we polled 1,000 people and discovered that we really are a nation of nature lovers! Almost half of UK adults (48%) told us that their favourite places to explore were in the great outdoors, and the most chosen days out included many of the country’s free attractions (such as beaches, woodland and national parks) – and we can see why!

We also learnt that castles and historical sites (38%), nature and wildlife attractions such as zoos and aquariums (35%) and free to visit museums, art galleries and similar indoor experiences (31%), were also all firm favourites. 

2021 and Beyond

Despite such an array of choice when it comes to free things to see and do up and down the country, more than a quarter of UK adults (29%) have not visited any attractions so far in 2021 - not even those on their doorstep. 

Whilst we might have some way to go in convincing those people to come and join us on a trip, 25% of those adults we surveyed told his they had visited more sites than they usually would have done, and 15% told us they’re made more of an effort to visit UK attractions and places of interest since restrictions have eased throughout 2021. 

Looking beyond 2021, we wanted to find out if people would be continuing to staycation and explore the UK beyond the end of this year, and how the travel restrictions might have changed our views on holidaying at home. 

We were delighted to find that more than a quarter (27%) told us that they’d be upping their game when it comes to exploring Britain in the coming months, and that they plan to visit much more of what’s on offer on home soil in the future. A further three out of ten (29%) said they hope to visit more places than they had done previously. 

So Much to Do, So Much to See

Whether you’re a shopaholic or you’re a history buff, a film fanatic or a great outdoors adventurer, (or like some of us, you just like a nice cup of tea and a slice of cake), we want to showcase some of the wonderful days out that you can have when travelling with us. 

To do so, we’ve created a series of handy guides which outline some of the attractions, places of interest, and lovely things to do that are within just 20 minutes’ walk of some of our key stops.

The locations we’ve explored include Halifax, Bradford, Sunderland, York, Doncaster, and London, all of which have plenty to keep you busy should you choose to visit! Whether you’re travelling solo, with a friend, a group, or even with children, we hope you’ll see there is something to suit everyone.

As well as polling some of the Grand Central team, we carefully examined TripAdvisor ratings for each destination, pulling together a list of each of the attractions located within a 20-minute walk of the stations we stop at, categorising each of them into:

  • Shopping 
  • History and Culture
  • Film Fans
  • Nature Lovers
  • Coffee & Tea

Finally, we ranked each attraction by distance, walking time, and number of ‘excellent’ ratings based on their TripAdvisor reviews. Our top tips and handy downloadable guides can be found by visiting: