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Thread: Visiting the UK

  1. #1

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    Visiting the UK

    The time has come to bid next year's vacation time here at work. (It's a strange system and a long story...) Been wanting for a long time to travel to the UK both for photography and simply to see the place. Primary interests are probably Wales, Lake District and Scotland, but I'm open to suggestions. I have two weeks available and would like to hear your thoughts on the best time of year to travel and any other general advice you may have to offer.

    Thanks in advance,
    Will
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    The Peak District is good too! I have lived in the UK from 1994-1997 and from 2000-2002 and I can tell you the weather is hard to predict. The best forecast for tomorrow's weather is today's weather, if you get my drift. I would take a chance on June.

    If you see yourself further north for fun, I will host you in Stockholm, Sweden. I can bring you to a place that would empty all your holders in one day!
    Francesco

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    Francesco,

    Thank you for your kind offer of hospitality. I'd like to take a rain check. Gee, if I had a whole lifetime to travel, I still wouldn't get to see all the places I'd like.

    I'm actually looking at the end of May, so pretty close to your June suggestion.

    Thanks,
    Will
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    The end of May can be very good, it can also be terrible. Carla and I were in the UK this May for two weeks, but the 10 days in Stockholm and Uppsala were actually better - we arrived at the end of an unseasonal heatwave.

    If I had just two weeks...maybe Pembrokeshire and the Wye Valley (South Wales) and North Wales for the mountains. Cornwall can be good if you like rugged coastlines and old tin mines. It's a long way from anywhere else (by UK standards), though.

    Then again, I grew up in Surrey and found plenty to photograph there. The nice thing about the UK is the variety in an area roughly half the size of California.

  5. #5
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    if you are looking to do mainly "wilderness" type shots, then Scotland is the place for you. I would suggest that two weeks isnt a lot of time to take in Wales AND the Lakes AND Scotland - you'd need that at least one week to just explore one of those locations. The Snowdonia National Park in Wales is the obvious place to go but the Welsh coast can be remarkably beautiful too and is not the typically overpopulated tourist type place like Cornwall. Infact, much of the English, Welsh and Scottish Atlantic coast is pretty spectacular. And dont be put off by the weather, I think that is our strong point ... it's changeability is a photographic subject in itself.

    If you are interested in locations of prehistoric sites/ megalithic structures etc, this site is priceless as a guide ... www.themodernantiquarian.com.

    there is some interesting coastline along the south and south eastern area of england, but it is not as immediately stunning as the western areas - lots of chalk cliffs and some isolated stacks and arches carved by the sea.

    If you can to for-go one week in Britain, get yourself over to Eire - the south western/ Western corner is very photogenic, although the whole country is amazing and well worth a visit.

    whatever you do, have fun and post the resulting shots here for us to see

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    I am proud to say there are large swathes of British countryside that are well worth a look. From a totally unbiased ( ) view i would have to recommend Norfolk as a beautiful county where even the towns and cities are green and lush (apart from Great Yarmouth. Never, ever go to Great Yarmouth, ever).
    [size=1]the all new darkplanet photoblog[/size][size=1]
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    The west coast of Scotland has some of the best if not the best scenery in the mainland of the UK. The combination of lochs (lakes), hills and remote countryside plus wildlife is unrivalled in the UK. Also many of the famous islands such as Skye, Mull & Iona are relatively easily accessible. Good locations to stay are Oban & Fort William.

    The Lake District as mentioned by someone else is beautiful too but it is quite a compact area and can get very crowded - save it for a second visit!

    If you go to Scotland try to see Edinburgh the capital, a beautiful city with plenty to see, do and photograph.

    As others have said the weather is completely unpredictable which is why the countryside is so green! I was going to say October can be a lovely month but looking out of the window at the gloom and rain perhaps I won't.

    Whenever you come & wherever you go have a wonderful time but remember as well as your camera gear (& passport) you'll need stout boots, a rain-proof coat and also a pair of binocs can be useful, especially in Scotland.

  8. #8
    Leon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sparx
    (apart from Great Yarmouth. Never, ever go to Great Yarmouth, ever).
    NEVER!

    ps - Love the quote, Marcus ... Brent is one of my heros.

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    North Wales has a lot going for it (as does the peaks, Lake District and of course Scotland. On a scale of grandeur I would rank, 1st Scotland, Snowdonia, Lakes then Peaks, but they all have their own character. The Lakes can be sensual and romantic in a way that Snowdonia can never be. Scotland has epic scale that North Wales cannot match. The old quarries of Wales are totally unique (Man VS Mountain). You will not go wrong with any. To get an idea of North Wales, look at my gallery, as a few are from there. The place has real soul! I have spent a little time in Scotland and refuse to erturn until I can devote a decent amount of time to it. Gorgeous.

    Tom

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    May I second (or third etc) the Scottish suggestions. We normally go to Scoland for a fortnight (that's 2 weeks if "fortnight" isn't American) at the beginning of June. We always find the locals saying that the weather was better the week before, so May sounds good.

    The longest day is June 21st, and in the north of Scotland you notice the long days. I have switched my car headlights on after 10 at night in the north, because of the time, not the light... Many hours to photograph in up there.

    Fort William is one of the places we stay. Glen Nevis, which is nearby, has been described as "the loveliest glen in Scotland". I won't disagree. A word of warning though: the wet weather comes in from the west, so Fort William is one of the wettest places around, not helped by the fact that Ben Nevis is there.

    The countryside changes a good deal depending on the underlying rocks. Aviemore is only two hours away by car, but the landscape in the Cairngorms is quite different.

    Otherwise, you could do a lot worse that Yorkshire, which is a good base for touring (if you have a car), as well as being the most beautiful county in England (I'm a Yorkshireman). The Peak District is just down a bit, the Pennines are wonderfully scenic, the North York Moors have a wild appearance. And there's York itself.

    If simply viewing the UK, rather than coming to photograph the scenery, a visit to Bath would be worth making, simply to see the Roman Baths. They have a good web site with photos, so you can check it out from the comfort of your own home before deciding. Fort William has a web cam, so you can always use that to see the rain <g>.

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