Both genteel and wild, there’s nothing quite like the English countryside for rural escapes with its patchwork hills, dramatic dales, ancient woodlands and winding country roads. All well and good, but what is there to do in England’s countryside exactly? Quite a lot, actually. Admire the grand interiors of a stately home before catching a play in the surrounding gardens, travel back in time with visits to ancient stone circles and crumbling castles, or step into a chocolate box of quaint villages and market towns and live like a local, trying farmhouse cheeses, cream teas and real ales along the way.
There’s something special about being close to a bird of prey; those round watchful eyes on high alert, fixing you with a dominating stare.
Location: Rosliston, Derbyshire
Let Woodland Ways teach you the basics of bushcraft in a fun and safe environment whilst spending time outdoors and sleeping under the stars.
Location: Catton, Derbyshire
Built in AD122, Hadrian’s Wall was once the largest frontier in the Roman Empire and remained that way for 300 years.
Location: Haltwhistle, Northumberland
The Howard family has called Castle Howard home for 300 years but their house is your house as you explore one of Yorkshire’s finest historic estates.
Location: York, North Yorkshire
Over the summer, pay a visit to the famous Wistow Maze, a versatile puzzle in the English countryside that changes shape each year.
Location: Wistow, Leicestershire
See some of Yorkshire’s beautiful countryside from a mountain bike, Segway, tree-top trail and by night, at one of the UK’s premier activity centres.
Location: Dalby Forest, North Yorkshire
Pronounced ‘beaver’ by locals and literally meaning ‘beautiful view’, the Vale of Belvoir offers the perfect place to hideaway.
Location: Near Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire
Witness the sights, sounds, smells and magic of steam travel from a bygone age and journey through Hampshire’s countryside on a restored steam train.
Location: Alresford, Hampshire
Come and meet friendly farm animals, have a rainforest experience in Victorian glasshouses or get lost in the maze.
Location: Havant, Hampshire
Cannock Chase is the UK’s smallest mainland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Here you can ride, hike, climb or just wander at your own pace.
Location: Rugeley , Staffordshire
Visit Rutland Water's famous wildfowl sanctuary, covering a 1,000 acres of bird hides, mucky nature trails and interactive visitor centres.
Location: Rutland Water, Rutland
The appeal of Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens goes way beyond its remarkable wildlife collection to breeding programmes and exuberant gardens.
Location: Burford, Oxfordshire
Enjoy a trip to Didcot Railway Centre, whose magnificent restored engines will take you steaming through most of the Oxfordshire countryside.
Location: Didcot, Oxfordshire