Top 25 Attractions & Things To Do In England


England has it all: an enviable capital that takes weeks to explore, heart-melting countryside you may amble through to no end, a flamboyant pub culture that sucks you in the moment you have a sip on your first cider ever, and so inspiring a history that every pebble in Cornwall and every cobblestone in Hertfordshire seems to echo its magnificence. See the grandeur of the Bronze Age at Stonehenge, walk the whole length of the Hadrian's Wall to get the gist of the troubles with the Romans, relive the days of the Norman Conquest at Hastings, sympathize with Henry VIII's tormented wives, and trace the legends of world's literature and music on route from Stratford-upon-Avon to Liverpool.

Following some research into the preferences and opinions posted by users of various social media sites, such as Twitter and Facebook, as well as own resources and reviews by the most popular travel sites, Open Travel has compiled a list of top 25 things to see or do on your England Vacations. Make sure you've got plenty of time on you, a pair of hardwearing footwear, and a couple of spare memory cards for your camera. The multitude of impressions has to be somehow captured to be later remembered.

  1. 1

    Natural History Museum

    Location: London, England

    Natural History Museum

    Photo by neiljs

    If you've ever wondered how big a dinosaur could possibly have been, this is where the answer awaits. You literally stumble upon it right in the main hall. But the giant skeleton of Diplodocus is nothing but a curious drop in the ocean of marvels that the museum has to offer. From sections presenting the wonders of Earth's functioning and the mystery of human evolution to those dedicated to ecology and wildlife, they actually do encourage you to touch, smell, and press buttons providing you with a huge scientific input in the most accessible and entertaining way possible. A place to spend long hours, if not days!

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  2. 2

    Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site

    Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site

    Photo by JimChampion

    Designated a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Jurassic Coast is the popular name given to a 95 mile (155 km) long stretch of coastline in southern England along the east Devon and Dorset shores. ‘Jurassic' does ring a bell, doesn't it? Although you won't be chased by any T-Rex here, you might go home with some Jurassic catch as the area abounds in fossil scattered on the beaches. If you are not into plowing through sand and mud to find your little precious something, just amble down the wild beaches for the sheer white cliffs and stunning rock formations with the millions of earthly years frozen in them are not to be missed!

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  3. 3

    Stonehenge

    Location: Amesbury, England

    Stonehenge

    Photo by René Ehrhardt

    Indisputably one of the world's most vital prehistoric sites and surely one of Britain's most popular tourist attractions, the ancient ring of Neolithic stones at Stonehenge has attracted hordes of pilgrims, philosophers and mystery seekers for centuries. Situated in a UNESCO World Heritage Site on Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire, Stonehenge is considered one of the most archaeologically rich spots in Europe. It lures with not only its construction which echoes the long forgotten Britain's past but mostly with the veil of unsolved mysteries and theories connected with its use. Should you yearn for more of these ‘sacrificial center or a celestial timepiece' problems to solve head for Avebury's stone circles.

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  4. 4

    Going Places Cotswolds

    Location: Cotswold Hills, England

    Going Places Cotswolds

    Photo by neosnaps

    The very name the region was proudly given, that is the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, speaks for itself. The gentle hills dotted with pretty villages of honey-colored stone, charming churches and cottages, dry-stone walls and country pubs represent the quintessence of rural England, as immortalized in countless books, paintings and films. Much of the superior quality of this region is owed to its medieval sheep and the wealth they generated. Who knows, maybe you can still hear a Middle Age ‘baa!' echoing in the dry-stone partitions used to enclose the animals. These days the enticing cities of Cotswolds like Stratford-upon-Avon, Bath, and Oxford lure with great places to eat, celebrity residents and lively cultural events. A must stopover!

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  5. 5

    Canterbury Cathedral

    Location: Canterbury, England

    Canterbury Cathedral

    Photo by Stryngford

    Mother Church of the Anglican Communion and seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Canterbury Cathedral is an inspirational building where beauty and holiness blend perfectly. This magnificent place of worship is a masterpiece of Romanesque and Gothic styles and an incredible display of architecture in relation to England's religious history. Once you enter you will instantly have the impression of being small and humble in the presence of the impressive Perpendicular Gothic high vaulting along with slender columns rising up to arch high above your head. The glass stained windows are worth having a look and so are the medieval tombs of King Henry IV and Edward the Black Prince.

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  6. 6

    Tower of London

    Location: London, England

    Tower of London

    Photo by Gaspa

    If you ever get the chance to visit London, don't linger for too long gazing at the bridge open the bascules, and do justice to the Tower of London instead. Ever since it was founded by William the Conqueror to assert the Norman power, the fortress has been the setting for some of the most momentous events in European and British History. It has protected, housed, imprisoned and seen many a life taken away. By the way, don't lay your head where Ann Boleyn did before she was executed and have a picture taken of you - it's gross!. What you can do is marvel at the glamorous Crown Jewels, learn the names of all ravens roaming about the complex, and listen to blood-curdling ghost stories born in reputedly the most haunted building in England.

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  7. 7

    Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum

    Location: London, England

    Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum

    Photo by José López

    By far the best place on Earth for celebrity spotting, Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum is heaps of fun if you're ready to make certain allowances. They're all jut wax figures and you will hardly have to resist the impression they're alive, but the very idea of summoning the great of the world under one roof and the way the replicas take after their prototypes are truly compelling. Mingle with sport and pop stars, royalty and world leaders, Bollywood and Hollywood icons, as well as fashion and cultural figures. They're just waiting for their photo-opportunity with you!

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  8. 8

    Lizard Peninsula

    Lizard Peninsula

    Photo by IDS.photos

    Stunningly beautiful no matter when you visit, the Lizard Peninsula has forever been a goldmine of inspiration for artist. Staggering cliffs, whitewashed cottages clustering around picturesque harbors, flamboyant fishing boats drying upside down on the beaches, sub-tropical vegetation and mild climate await along compelling history that's inevitably inscribed in the breathtaking vistas. Make sure you venture as far as the Lizard Point and its towering lighthouse to really get a feeling you're at the most southerly point of Great Britain. And if you're in for a tidal spectacle, especially on a stormy day, don't miss Kynance Cove, another sparkling gem that shouldn't perhaps be missed.

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  9. 9

    Warwick Castle

    Location: Warwick, England

    Warwick Castle

    Photo by Misterweiss

    Shrouded in the mists floating over the River Avon, Warwick Castle still echoes the torture, passion and power of the Norman Conquest, tells fascinating stories of its inhabitants and visitor, sucks you in its medieval routines, from preparations for sieges and Victorian parties to cleaning the lavishly decorated State Rooms and grooming the 60 acres of landscaped ground. Explore its beautiful gardens, learn how heavy a sword can be, and have a look at the famous trebuchet, a catapult claimed to be the largest in the world. Mind you, it's still in operation.

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  10. 10

    Shakespeare's Hometown

    Shakespeare's Hometown

    Photo by amandabhslater

    Apart from the fact that it's the birthplace of world's greatest dramatist and a primary source of his inspiration, Stratford-upon-Avon is, too, one of the most adorable places in the whole England. Set in the charming countryside of Warwickshire, steeped in culture and history, clad with flowers and brimming with picture perfect little houses, the town adds a magical quality to the most down-to-earth activities like dining or shopping. A romantic (though crowded) hideaway for Romeos and Juliettes, a hotspot for theatergoers, and a galore for historians. Stratford is the ultimate place to sample Olde England at its tastiest.

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  11. 11

    British Museum

    Location: London, England

    British Museum

    Photo by Miss Claeson

    If an institution is hailed one of the best and biggest museum in the world, it is obviously obliging, and you may be sure that the British Museum does not fall short of expectations. With its stunning collections in excess of 7 million objects originating from all continents, it is able to feed you with a comprehensive account of human history and culture. Do prepare for surprises, a lot of aesthetic awe, and a little shock. After all, you may have mixed feelings when you realize that Ginger, a famous mummified corpse on display, was once a living, breathing Egyptian. Creepy.

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  12. 12

    Westminster Abbey

    Location: London, England

    Westminster Abbey

    Photo by Tebbetts

    Westminster Abbey is where a journey into the glorious past of British royalty can be enjoyed. Rising high and proud just to the west of the Houses of Parliament, this living church has seen spectacular coronation ceremonies and burials of the most prominent figures, including "Bloody" Mary and Charles Darwin. Literature buffs will certainly appreciate the Poet's Corner brimming with memorials to the likes of Shakespeare or Dickens, and art enthusiasts will take delight in gazing at magnificent stained-glass windows. More than a 1000 years worth of treasures enshrined in a spectacular Gothic framework make Westminster Abbey along the Palace and the neighboring Big Ben an undeniable tourist hotspot that should not be missed on any account.

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  13. 13

    Lake District National Park

    Location: Lake Side, England

    Lake District National Park

    Photo by andy hayward

    There are numerous reasons to explore the Lake District. Not only is it postcard perfect with its color-clothed wooded hills and shimmering lake waters but also an ideal place to stretch your legs and have some hiking workout. Opt for the Scafell Pike, at 3210 ft the highest mountain in England, or Helvellyn which can be a distinct challenge, too. For those of less adventurous climbers, the region offers countless trails for fine walking which both cross the fells and run through the valleys. The leisure pleasure package includes also boat cruises (16 lakes to choose from), the Dove Cottage where the famed William Wordsworth lived or the museum of Beatrix Potter, the author of Peter Rabbit tales. Have an unforgettable time!

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  14. 14

    Soho

    Location: London, England

    Soho

    Photo by turydddu

    You don't come here for sightseeing. You don't learn about the history of royalty here, either. You come here to have fun, and if there's any learning to it, it is about the central position of Soho in the capital's nightlife and its major role in the development of British culture.When the great part of London falls into the arms of Morpheus, Soho becomes even busier than at day. Although its international fame used to be mainly generated by the thriving sex industry, today the district boasts a strong position in the fields of art, theater and live music, with only a negligible handful of infamous remnants. Anyway, be it karaoke contests, lavish dining, stage comedy shows, all-night clubbing, or celeb spotting, whatever culture-related you feel like doing, you got it.

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  15. 15

    Royal Observatory Greenwich

    Location: London, England

    Recognized internationally for its military and naval connections, the London Borough of Greenwich, provides quite a number of attractions to holidaymakers, day-trippers and Londoners alike. Greenwich lush green area is a perfect Sunday walk with the Cutty Sark Clipper Ship (note, much of it has been lost in the fire of March, 2007), the Greenwich Market, the Royal Observatory and the National Maritime Museum on the way. And once you put the right measure, that is the Prime Meridian of the world, to your watch and set it the way it should be, have a leisurely pleasure strolling the Greenwich Royal Park.

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  16. 16

    York Minster

    Location: York, England

    York Minster

    Photo by Son of Groucho

    With one of the largest pedestrian zones in Europe, York is a place where the old harmonizes with the new and the unique can be discovered among the commonplace. Millions of people have strolled through 1900 years of history on York's impressive city walls, raised their heads to gaze at the overhanging timber-framed buildings that line The Shambles (a perfectly preserved medieval street), taken a boat ride on the River Ouse and climbed Clifford's Tower. Also, most of them would never leave the city without paying a visit to the York Minster - a magnificent Gothic Cathedral that few in Europe can really rival.

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  17. 17

    Changing of the Guard

    Location: London, England

    Changing of the Guard

    Photo by bortescristian

    Her Majesty's prime residence provides a wonderful backdrop to this ceremonial event held in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace every day at around 11am. Dressed in fiercely red uniforms and fuzzy headgear, the regiments march up the Mall to provide guard duties to the Sovereign and relieve what is called "The Old Guard". Accompanied with music and a bit of crowd chaos, this highly intricate procedure is a focal point for the thousand of tourists in London and a vivid reflection of royal tradition that still hold sways all over the islands.

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  18. 18

    Durham Castle

    Location: Durham, England

    Durham Castle

    Photo by Robin Widdison

    Voted in the 2001 BBC poll the nation's best-loved building, Durham Cathedral is one of the greatest and instantly recognizable buildings in England. The Cathedral is widely known as the largest and finest example of Norman architecture specially because of its spectacular nave supported by huge 6.6m high and round carved pillars. Erected over 40 years with a considerable unity in its style, the church houses the relics of St. Cuthbert, the evangelist of Northumbria. The area behind the Cathedral is occupied by not less magnificent Durham Castle, the ancient Norman fortress and residence of the prince-bishops of Durham. Don't miss it while exploring England for together with the incomparable setting upon the River Wear, the Durham complex never fails to impress.

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  19. 19

    Hadrian's Wall

    Built in 122 AD by the Emperor Hadrian to protect his colony in England from the advancing Pictish tribes in Scotland, the amazing wall stretches for 87 miles across the north of England through the counties of Cumbria, Northumberland and Tyne and Wear. Although only remains of it are still visible it is one of the greatest monuments of Roman origin in northern Europe. And there is far more to Hadrian's Wall than just a wall! The best way to appreciate it, and the scenic countryside around it, is surely to walk it, following in the footsteps of the Legionnaires. Forts, temples and turrets appear all along its line so don't hesitate to let the path lead you through the unique Roman heritage.

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  20. 20

    Liverpool Maritime Mercantile City

    Location: Liverpool, England

    To fully comprehend the important influence Liverpool had throughout the centuries in the development of the British Empire you need to make for the Maritime Mercantile City. The City includes 6 areas which are strongly related to Liverpool's historic role as a commercial port. Places like the Pier Head, the Albert and the Stanley Docks, the commercial center of Castle or Victoria Street, the Cultural Quarter around William Brown Street and the area of warehouses and merchant's houses around Duke Street will give you a lesson on how the city pioneered in the advance of modern dock technologies, transport systems and port management. Definitely not to be looked over as Liverpool's abundance of history and world-class architecture helped to secure its title as European Capital of Culture 2008.

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  21. 21

    Eden Project

    Eden Project

    Photo by Mark Vallins

    If you shall ever seek a better understanding of the flora around you, don't hesitate to enter the Eden. It might be your only chance to ever get so close the Creator! Now, seriously, nested in a former china clay pit at Bodelva, Cornwall, the amazing botanical enterprise is far more than just a green theme park. Consisting of three huge plastic biomes brimming with countless plants of globe origin, the project's aim is to enable visitors to understand the crucial relationship between plants, people and nature resources. Just follow a path round the biomes stopping over to hear talks about the plants, use the interactive displays for even more detailed information or explore the 10 hectares of surrounding landscaped rockeries and gardens. That's what you call a lesson on botany!

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  22. 22

    Chinatown

    Location: Manchester, England

    Chinatown

    Photo by calydelphoto

    Nested in east central Manchester, right next to the Gay Village, it is one of the most bustling and colorful areas of city. An eye-pleaser for architecture buffs, a never-ending story for the Orient lovers, and a garden of Eden for the hungry. If the English staple diet is not to your taste, you'll find delight among myriad traditional restaurant that lure with mouth-watering smells and their quaint Asian decor. For a real added value, come over towards the end of January to witness the Chinese New Year celebrations, with the Golden Dragon parade and lavish fireworks as focal points on the agenda.You don't just visit this China-away-from-China experience; you live it!

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  23. 23

    University of Cambridge

    Location: Cambridge, England

    University of Cambridge

    Photo by alexbrn

    With a history stretching back to 1209 (making it the second oldest university in Britain after Oxford), some splendid architecture, an impeccable academic reputation best expressed in the number of distinguished graduates, a wealth of lore, and a romantic location, Cambridge is a legend not to be missed en route around England. Newton, Darwin, Rushdie and Plath - they all stomped the university grounds that, contrary to what is believed, do not invite the creme de la creme exclusively. And there is this irresistible charm of the city that host the 31 affiliated colleges. Compact, cosmopolitan, and exceptionally welcoming, Cambridge rewards its visitors with glorious architecture to gaze at, myriad locales to stay overnight, plenty of options to dine, and a graceful atmosphere to breath in.

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  24. 24

    Seven Sisters Country Park

    Location: Seaford, England

    Seven Sisters Country Park

    Photo by Paul-in-London

    If the only thing you associate with chalk is an old, squeaky blackboard, it's going to change once you've met the Seven Sisters. Situated in the Sussex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Country Park comprises 280 hectares of chalk cliffs with their grassy edges falling vertically into the meandering river. Home to what's been hailed one of Britain's finest unspoilt coastlines, this hypnotizing spot is a paradise for all sorts of outdoor endeavors, and the staggering diversity of its landscape as well as the compelling tranquility will keep you coming back for more.

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  25. 25

    The Roman Baths

    Location: Bath, England

    The Roman Baths

    Photo by Diliff

    If you're familiar with with any of Jane Austen's novels, you more or less know what ambiance to expect in Bath. Atmospheric squares, cobblestoned streets, impressive facades, charming hotels, and a scent of romance hovering in the air define the intoxicating quality of this once Roman city, today a World Heritage Site. Exceptionally easy to navigate on foot, Bath takes you from the magnificent Royal Crescent through fine theaters and museums to the unbelievably well-preserved Roman Baths complex, a shiny pearl in the town's imperial crown. Sadly, you are not allowed to take a bath yourself, but will surely manage to get a taste of the days long gone by.

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