The UK offers a wide range of hotels, rated on a star scale from 5-star luxury (and beyond!) to basic 1-star. There are also a large number of private B&Bs (short for “B&B”) offering rooms with usually a fried “full English breakfast”. You can also rent a private house that is let out as a holiday home; many of these holiday homes advertise on a variety of free websites or advertise on their own website. You can usually find good offers via a search engine for “independent holiday homes”.
Budget travelers can stay in a youth hostel or a backpacker hostel.
- YHA England and Wales, Tel. 0870 770 6113
- Northern Ireland, Tel. +44 28 9032-4733
- An independent hostel scene has developed in recent years, with a few private hostels offering a more relaxed fare than the YHA. These are listed on the Independent Hostel Guide website.
Another option is to stay in short-term rental accommodation. There are many such companies all over the country.
There are also many campsites with different levels of equipment. Not all of them are suitable for walkers: They are marked on Ordnance Survey maps with the symbol of a blue tent rather than a caravan. ‘Wild camping‘ on private land outside recognized campsites is a legal right in Scotland (but only within a reasonable distance of roads and inhabited buildings), elsewhere it can be difficult outside remote areas, although overnight camping is possible if done discreetly, or landowners give permission to camp in the wild for free or for a small fee if desired. There is an unwritten rule allowing wilderness camping at high altitudes in Snowdonia, North Wales, but no fee. Wilderness campers are expected to leave after two or three nights in the same location, partly to allow the ground to regenerate. Fires are generally discouraged (at best).
Some travelers to the UK choose to spend their holiday in a motorhome or caravan, which means their accommodation travels with them. There is a good range of campsites and caravans in most parts of the country.
If you are clever enough, you can hire a motorhome and park in secluded pub car parks [ask in advance] and enjoy the rural atmosphere and unique little pubs.
Couchsurfing is a great way to get to know both the people and the place. There are a large number of members all over the country and it is worth using this service as part of a trip as it provides insider knowledge.
More original (if sometimes expensive) is the Landmark Trust, a charity that buys historic buildings, follies and other unusual examples of architecture – especially those under threat of destruction – and renovates them to rent to holidaymakers.