UK road trip: top destinations for a weekend getaway

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UK road trips
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UK road trips

The weekend is the perfect time to hit those wide-open roads (or, you know, narrow country lanes).

If you’re in need of a change of scenery this weekend, try one of the beautiful UK road trip destinations below.

Borrowing a car for your trip or sharing the drive with a mate? We’ve got you covered with an easy explainer about short term car insurance, too!

Short term car insurance is perfect for borrowing a friend's car, lending your car to someone, or sharing a long drive.

Top destinations

All set to head out on the road for an epic weekend adventure? Try one of these beautiful destinations from across the UK:

The Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is known for being home to some of England’s prettiest villages - and the sprawling countryside that surrounds them isn’t bad either! 🌳

There’s tons to explore around the area, from thatched medieval villages to rolling hills and distinctive stately homes built of local yellow limestone.

For an action-packed itinerary, we’d recommend stopping in one of the beautiful towns and cities that sit around the Cotswolds too.

Oxford, Salisbury and Bath are all within reasonable driving distance, and each offer a heady mix of history, culture, and culinary treats.

In the mood for a truly mind-expanding experience? Stonehenge is definitely worth a stop.


A quaint seaside town, Tynemouth sits snugly at the mouth of the North East’s River Tyne, and boasts plenty of historic charm and natural beauty.

With stretches of unspoiled beaches, craggy cliffs, quaint markets, cool eateries, and the stunning ancient ruins of Tynemouth Priory and Castle, it’s the perfect day-trip destination.

Head down to the famous Riley’s Fish Shack for award-winning seafood and a bottle of fizz – to be enjoyed on the beach in comfy deck chairs. (Just don’t forget you’ll need a designated driver if you’re drinking. Or, even better, make a weekend of it and stay overnight ​​😌)

Why go abroad when there are so many beautiful UK destinations?
Why go abroad when there are so many beautiful UK destinations?


This place may be famous for its tarts, but there’s a lot more on offer than just sweet treats at Bakewell.

A great destination to head to from Sheffield or Manchester, this idyllic market town sits at the south of the awesome Peak District National Park. It’s one of those places where the scenic drive there is just as fun as the destination itself!

With plenty of walking routes, a beautiful river, and those famous Bakewell Puddings, this pretty town should definitely make it onto your road-trip bucket list.


Sitting on a peninsula on the South West coast of England, Cornwall is famous for its beautiful beaches, wild moorland, great surfing, and picturesque harbour villages.

Peruse the ‘Cornish Riviera’ for a decidedly cosmopolitan take on the English seaside or head to Newquay for surfing and seaside resort fun.

Don’t forget to throw in a Cornish cream tea for the ultimate experience. And pack some comfy shoes so you can enjoy one of Cornwall’s amazing cliff-top walks.


Head to North-West Wales to experience the mind-blowing wonder of the Snowdonia National Park.

A rugged expanse of mountains and glacial landforms, this is definitely one of the UK’s most awe-inspiring natural landscapes, and well worth a visit for nature lovers and adventurers.

Get the hiking boots out to head on one of Snowdonia’s hundreds of trails. Or, if that sounds too taxing, enjoy the scenery from the famous Snowdon Mountain Railway train. (Yes, you can literally take a train up to the summit of Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales! 🚂)

Bad weather? Even just driving around this gorgeous, moody landscape is well worth it. Who says road-trips have to have an end-point, anyway?

Glencoe and the Highlands

Experience the breath-taking beauty of the Scottish Highlands with a road-trip to the imposing Glencoe Valley.

Alongside the pretty village of Glencoe, which sits nestled in the valley, there are stunning waterfalls and challenging trails to enjoy – perfect for outdoor adventurers.

Not forgetting Loch Ness, the gigantic, legendary lake, which barely needs introduction.

Whether you’re keen to spot that elusive lake-dwelling monster, or just want to take in the awesome views, a visit to this impressive feat of nature is a must if you’re in the Glencoe area.

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Short-term car insurance

What is short-term car insurance?

Short-term car insurance does what it says on the tin. It’s car insurance that lasts for anything from an hour up to a few days, weeks, or months. Easy!

It’s perfect for:

  • Splitting a long road trip with someone. Just buy an hour or two of insurance when it’s your turn to drive.
  • Lending your car to someone, or borrowing one yourself.
  • An emergency. If you need to drive someone’s car (maybe they’ve hurt themselves or aren’t able to) then you can quickly take out cover.

It’s also great because:

  • If you take out short-term car insurance, it’s separate from any other car insurance you have. So if you have an accident, it won’t affect your no claims bonus with your other policy.
  • Most short-term car insurance policies (ahem, like ours!) are fully comprehensive, which is the highest level of cover you can get. You can read about what fully comprehensive car insurance covers you for here.
  • You can take it out really quickly. You usually have to answer less questions than with a long-term policy.
  • You can take it out for a flexible amount of time, and you can usually extend that time if you need to.
Short term insurance is perfect for a road trip
Short term insurance is perfect for a road trip

Preparing for a road trip

Make sure your road-trip goes to plan by following these simple steps before you set off:

Carry out some car maintenance checks

Nobody wants to break down mid road-trip. Before you head out, give your car a quick check over for the best chance at avoiding trouble. We have a handy guide to car maintenance, which tells you all you need to know about doing car checks at home.

Research charging points if you’re driving an electric vehicle (EV)

Don’t let a flat battery ruin your fun. If you drive an EV, be sure to plan out charging stops before you head out. Live in the capital? Here are some great road trips you can do from London on a single charge.

Make sure you’re not the only one insured on the car

For longer journeys, it’s always a good idea to make sure someone else is insured so they can take over driving if needed. Short-term car insurance is your best bet!

Dress and pack for comfort

Nothing ruins a road trip like a pair of too-tight jeans. To avoid wriggling in your seat the whole way, dress in something comfortable. Make sure you pack anything else you might need for a comfortable drive, too. Sunglasses are a must, as is a warm jumper, and a few bottles of water.

Plan your route

It’s true, Sat Nav makes it a lot easier to avoid getting lost these days. But it’s still important to plan your route before you set off, so you’ve got a good idea of which landmarks to look out for, and how long your journey should take. Planning ahead also means you can take the exact route you want to, whether that’s the fastest, or the most scenic.

Plan your stops

Planning stops before you head out is a good way to keep your road trip on-track. Otherwise, you risk things taking way longer than you expected. Nothing eats into a schedule like spontaneous drive-thru pit stops.

Plan some entertainment

Keep things from getting tedious by creating or choosing a great road-trip playlist ahead of time. Oh! Here’s one we made earlier… 🎶 Or pick out some interesting podcasts and audiobooks if that’s more your thing.

Check the weather forecast

Even if it looks bright and sunny when you’re heading out, don’t forget the great British weather loves a U-turn. Check ahead for forecasted rain, snow, high winds and anything else that might affect your journey.

Check for roadworks

Most navigation apps will tell you of any roadworks when you plan your route. Checking for any disruptions and likely traffic before you set off will help you decide if it’s worth heading on that route, or picking another one.

Double check if you’ve got breakdown cover

Never just assume you’ve got breakdown cover! It is offered in some fully comprehensive insurance policies, but not all. Don’t get caught short roadside – always double check before you set off.

Some extra tips for Easter roadtrips

The roads are always a lot busier on the holidays. So, before you head out on your Easter road-trip, make sure you:

  • Check for traffic warnings around the time you’ll be travelling.
  • Avoid travelling at peak times – Good Friday is likely to be the worst for traffic, so if you’re heading out then, try to set off before 9am or after 7:30pm.
  • Avoid travelling between 10am-2pm on Saturday and Sunday. And avoid 12pm-2:30pm on Monday.
  • Prepare for crowds – if you’re heading to attractions, buy tickets in advance so you know you’ll get to enter.

The golden rule before hitting the road, however, is to make sure your car is insured. Get a quick quote in minutes.

Wherever you’re going, have fun and drive safely! 🚗

Updated on 3rd April 2023