To celebrate the 1 year anniversary of the LeedsUniBound blog, we in the Study Abroad Office have decided to provide you with some insight into members of our team, and some hints and tips on the best things to do and places to visit in the UK in your study abroad semester/year!
If you haven’t already, check out last week’s post to find out a little bit about each of us, and our favourite places to visit on campus and around the city of Leeds!
Where would you recommend a study abroad student to visit on a weekend break?
Adam: Birmingham – There’s history (e.g. the Jewellery Quarter) and shopping, plus big arenas where events happen. The Lake District – You can take the historic train that runs from Settle to Carlisle and there’s plenty of hiking opportunities. However always plan for wind and rain!
Ashleigh: Anywhere in the Yorkshire Dales. A quick and usually cheap train ride out of the city, you can find some stunning countryside as well as loads of little towns and villages with good shopping and amazing pubs. Further afield, two of my favourite UK cities are Oxford and Edinburgh.
Lisa: The Lake District is one of my favourite places in the world. Keswick is a great base to explore the mountains and hills – you can travel by train to Penrith and then take a bus from there. I’m originally from Scotland and there are plenty of place that are worth a visit – Edinburgh and Glasgow are great for weekend visits but if you have longer and like the outdoors I recommend going further afield and exploring the Cairngorms or the Isle of Skye, or even walking the West Highland Way!
Liz: Apart from local cities and attractions; the Yorkshire Dales – one of the villages along the River Wharfe such as Grassington, Burnsall or Kettlewell. All of which have good pubs to soak up Dales’ life after a long walk with friends and some fresh air.
Steph: Cambridge or Oxford have a lot of history and pretty buildings. Liverpool is also a great city trip – lots to do and see, especially if you like the Beatles!
Greg: In Yorkshire – Ilkley, Howarth, Otley, Helmsley, York – stunning places to visit. Coastal – Whitby or Northumberland coast. Countryside – Lake District.
Ciara: One of the best things about Leeds is its fantastic connections to the rest of the UK. For weekend breaks I would recommend visiting Dublin, Edinburgh and Manchester in particular.
Kate: Bath, Durham, Cambridge and Edinburgh for a city break. I spent 3 years studying in Durham so I am a little biased but it’s a beautiful city. If you want a countryside retreat then definitely the Lake District, it’s one of my all-time favourite places. I’d recommend Keswick and Ambleside.
Do you have any top tips for travelling around the UK?
Adam: Book train/coach travel in advance to get cheaper tickets. Always book accommodation in advance! Look out for local events in advance, and check online for deals on restaurants and entrance tickets.
Ashleigh: Book your train tickets early (the earlier the better but even a day or two before you travel can often save you a lot compared to buying a ticket on the day at the station!) and get a student railcard if you can.
Lisa: Get a Young Person’s railcard if you will be doing a fair amount of travel by train and try to book your train travel in advance as it will be cheaper.
Liz: Use https://new.trainsplit.com/ to book rail travel. You can often buy cheaper tickets by breaking down the journeys and this website does it for you.
Steph: Book train tickets in advance as they can get quite expensive on the day. If you don’t mind longer travelling, getting a coach through National Express or Megabus can be significantly cheaper.
Greg: Take or hire a bike wherever you go as you get to see so much more.
Ciara: It sounds silly, but remember to look up! There is so much beautiful architecture in the UK that you wouldn’t want to miss.
Kate: In major UK cities such as London and Belfast, I’d strongly suggest doing a Free Walking Tour. I’ve done various free tours across the world from Edinburgh to Berlin and Sydney. They’re a great way of seeing the main sites, getting insider local knowledge and at the end you pay the guide what you think the tour is worth.
Thank you for reading. We hope you enjoyed hearing our top tips for studying abroad in Leeds!