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Planning a trip to the UK and want to go off the beaten path? An essential part of sustainable tourism, venturing out to little-known places will reduce your travel footprint remarkably, as well as support the smaller local communities! Here are my favorite lesser-known alternatives for popular UK destinations you’re gonna want to check out.

3 Fantastic Alternatives to Popular UK Destinations that'll Blow Your Mind • The Wanderful Me

Psst. This post contains affiliate links. Read our disclosure.

So you’re interested in exploring the UK, huh?

With many travelers (including myself), you’ll find destinations like London, Edinburgh, Isle of Skye, York, the Lake District, etc. filling up their Pinterest boards and UK bucket lists…

But wowza, have you ever seen how packed those places can get?

Heck, locals on the Isle of Skye in Scotland even cried for help to the government to deal with the overwhelming (and detrimental) influx of tourists!

That’s crazy, isn’t it?

So, if you’re like me and suffer from a bit of tourist-phobia (meaning you go waaaay out of the way to avoid heaves of tourists stuffed into an area like sardines), give these 3 lesser-known, but still fantastic, alternatives for popular UK destinations!


Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye, Scotland → Watkins Path, Wales

One of my favorite walks in Wales, Watkins Path features gorgeous, teal-blue pools just like the very popular Fairy Pools on the Isle of Skye in Scotland.

The only difference?

Watkins Path is a heck of a lot lesser known amongst tourists and I’d go as far to say it’s even more beautiful! I mean, heck, just look at that photo below. Wow!

The gorgeous fairy pools at Watkins Path in Snowdonia National Park - Wales, UK
A different view looking over the scenery and landscape surrounding the Watkins Path hike in Snowdonia National Park.

Set in the majestic Snowdonia National Park, Watkins Path is around a 30-45 minute hike with incredible views of surrounding mountains, cascading waterfalls, lush greenery, and more. You won’t be disappointed!

If you’re visiting during the summer, I highly recommend bringing a swimsuit and going in for a dip! While the pools are f*cking cold, you’ll get used the temperature faster than you think and it’s surprisingly refreshing.

Wanderful Tip: Bring a water bottle! I brought my precious GRAYL water bottle and it was SO nice being able to filter the ice cold water for a drink.

A waterfall at Watkins Path.

London, England → Chester, England

Sure, everyone wants to see Big Ben or Westminster Abbey, but how about ancient Roman Walls, the largest uncovered amphitheater in Britain, or the only place in the world where you’ll find something called the Rows?

Introducing the cool little city of Chester.

Chester Cathedral surrounding by lush orange, yellow, red, and green leaves in fall.

Located near Liverpool and Manchester in Northwest England, it’s one of my personal favorites in the UK, as it still features all the top sites and attractions as a bigger UK city — like a cathedral, museums, and awesome foodie spots — but feels more intimate!

Not to mention, it has the most incredible Tudor style architecture that’ll seriously blow you away!

Interested in seeing what this city has to offer (including the notorious “Chester Rows”? Check out my Chester city guide HERE!

Psst, need some help packing for your next trip? Check out my list of 10 odd essentials I never travel without HERE!

Isle of Wight, England → Isle of Anglesey, Wales

Gorgeous coastal views? Check.
Tiny, adorable villages? Check.
Beautiful beaches perfect for long walks? Check.
A quiet and relaxing atmosphere great for chilling out? Check.

Roughly the same size as one another and featuring much of the same scenery, yet vastly different in the number of yearly tourists, opting to visit Anglesey in North Wales will no doubt be a unique and memorable experience!

(Psst, want to make your trip even more incredible? Check out these 12 eco-friendly, luxury glamping spots in the UK!)

Sophie sitting on a rock overlooking the South Stack Lighthouse on Holy Island (Anglesey, Wales).
South Stack Lighthouse Hike
Sophie sitting on some rocks with a lighthouse and Puffin Island in the background.
Puffin Island in the background!

Though most of North Wales ranks high on my favorite list, Anglesey in particular is somewhere I keep going back again and again.

The beaches, coastal hikes, Anglesey countryside, and more are all incredible! (In fact, it’s one of my 33 reasons to visit Wales this year!)

I recommend spending at least a couple nights here. That’ll give you time to see the best of what Anglesey has to offer!

Such as experiencing the South Stack Lighthouse hike, venturing out to Puffin Island, walking Newborough Beach to Tŵr Mawr Lighthouse, exploring Porth Wen Brick Works, or simply strolling through the many adorable villages.

So, on your next trip to the UK or when planning your adventure here, keep these 3 alternative destinations in mind! All will blow you the heck away.

Have you ever heard of these places? Or have you ever considered traveling to one of these 3 UK destinations? Let me know in the comments below!

Sophie xx

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Ready to have the most amazing UK trip? Include these lesser-known, yet totally incredible, alternatives on your itinerary to go off the beaten path and experience a more unique adventure! #UK #sustainabletravel #britain #travel #europe
Need some help planning the ultimate UK trip? Before you head to all the most popular destinations, check out these 3 under-the-radar, yet totally awesome, places first! #UK #travel #tips #inspiration

As mentioned above, this post contains affiliate links. Which means if you make a purchase through the links, this site receives a small commission at no extra cost to you. Read our full disclosure here.

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