The moment the seasons start to switch, autumn becomes enchanting.
There’s a little magic in the air, as it gets chillier and the leaves start to turn into dazzling shades of yellow, brown, red and gold. It is the season of conkers, bonfires, and chilly walks followed by hot cocoa by a log fire.
The UK is particularly beautiful at this time of year and there’s no better way to enjoy it than to get outside and soak up the autumnal charm on a break or long walk.
Here’s our round-up of eight beautiful places to visit in the UK during autumn:
1. Westonbirt, Gloucestershire
Described by the Forestry Commission as “a world-class collection of maples, a treetop walkway and vivid autumn colour”, Westonbirt Arboretum is a must-see.
Home to over 18,000 trees and shrubs, this is a gorgeous place to explore while surrounding yourself in the beauty of the season and some of the rarest plants and majestic trees in the country.
Why in autumn?
This gorgeous autumn hotspot is ideally situated near the historic market town of Tetbury, just 40 minutes from our very own Hallmark Hotel Gloucester it is a good addition to your list of planned excursions.
2. Stourhead, Wiltshire
Beautiful Stourhead is a National Trust site, comprising of a Palladian house and world-famous landscape gardens.
Known for its stunning display of autumn colours, the house itself is splendid to visit, with its majestic stately rooms full of exquisite furnishings and historic art. The gardens, with the beautiful lake and classical temples in the centre, are picture perfect.
The range of exotic trees will delight you, especially when the North American maples turn a scarlet red towards the end of August, marking the start of the colder season.
There’s even a small cottage nestled amongst the trees in the garden where you can pop in and sit by the fire with a hot cup of tea.
3. Richmond Park, London
This 2,500-acre royal park is a haven for wildlife and a site of natural beauty, where you can wander for hours watching the deer as they feed on autumn conkers.
Take in incredible views, such as St Paul’s Cathedral, located just 12 miles away. It’s the perfect place to escape to if you’re finding London too busy and noisy – a complete haven of tranquillity only a stone’s throw from the hustle and bustle.
4. Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire
These ancient woodlands are steeped in history and cultural heritage, with the area being inhabited since the Iron Ages. The forest was then utilised by Anglo-Saxon kings (and by the Normans after 1066) as royal hunting grounds.
Nowadays, this ancient land remains a place of natural beauty and historical significance. Mythological too – there are so many legends surrounding this area.
There are many walks and cycle tracks through these mystical woods, making it a must-visit place for a break and only 40 minutes from Hallmark Hotel Gloucester.
5. Salisbury, Wiltshire
Salisbury is famous for its breath-taking cathedral, so this is a definite must see when you’re visiting. Its stupendous steeple (the tallest church spire in the UK since 1549) can be viewed for miles around.
Salisbury is known to be a homely city with a warm, welcoming atmosphere. It also hosts many gorgeous markets, making it a lovely place to get ahead and begin your Christmas shopping!
With Stonehenge only eight miles from the town, you can explore the landscape before staying in one of our Bournemouth hotels.
6. New Forest, Hampshire
The New Forest in Hampshire is a paradise in autumn and is only 10 miles away from the seaside town of Bournemouth.
A beautiful spot to hike, cycle or go horse riding, the New Forest is particularly breath-taking between September and November. The forest transforms into a canopy of rich reds and golds and it’s the season when pigs are released for pannage. You’ll find them roaming free in the woods, munching on the fallen acorns and chestnuts.
Under William the Conqueror, the New Forest was once a royal hunting ground, much like the Forest of Dean. Today it remains a wholly unspoiled landscape, where ponies, deer, pigs, and cattle wander freely for you to enjoy.
7. Rydal, Cumbria
Just an hour from Hallmark Hotel Carlisle, you’ll find this bewitchingly pretty place.
For almost 40 years Rydal Mount was home to the Romantic poet, William Wordsworth, so the area’s fittingly nostalgic ambience is echoed in its literary history. When his daughter Dora died in 1847, Wandsworth and his wife went and planted hundreds of daffodils in the field between Rydal Mount and the main road as a memorial to her. The field is still called Dora’s Field and is now owned by the National Trust.
In the autumn, this incredible place changes colour and offers stunning misty mornings across the water that will make you feel like you’ve stepped into Wandsworth’s poem ‘Thought on the Seasons’.
The Lake District is very much unparalleled when it comes to places of natural beauty – the whole area should be explored and enjoyed at length.
8. Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire
This stunning feat of Baroque architecture stands proudly in some of the loveliest landscaped gardens in the country.
The 2000-acre park surrounding Blenheim Palace is peppered with copper beech roundels, field maple, medieval oaks and a rose garden. In autumn, Blenheim Palace offers an incredible array of seasonal delights such as a Halloween afternoon tea and a delicious menu at the Orangery restaurant. There is a fantastic maze on site, buggy rides, fishing, and even free outdoor film screenings.
This place is a winner for the whole family and is less than an hour from our stunning Hallmark Hotel The Welcombe.
We hope that you’ve enjoyed reading about these special spots where you can immerse yourself in Autumnal glory and wave goodbye to those summer evenings.
If you are staying at any of our hotels, you can always ask our staff for more information about local areas, they will be more than happy to help.