23 September 2020

Accessible staycation destinations in the UK

It appears that, amongst other things, 2020 is the year of the staycation. As travelling abroad becomes a much less attractive option, many people have chosen to instead enjoy some of the amazing landscapes and attractions the UK has to offer.

If you are considering a staycation, but perhaps rely on mobility aids like stair lifts or a wheelchair and want to make sure the location you visit is accessible, in this article we suggest some of our favourite accessible destinations in the UK.

Read on to discover some of the best accessible staycation destinations in the UK.

Devon, England

An incredibly popular destination thanks to its rugged coastline and amazing in-land vistas, Devon might surprise many with its high levels of accessibility. Especially for those who live in built-up areas, the serene Devon lifestyle can really capture many people’s hearts and make them want to keep coming back year after year.

Life in a Breakdown blogger Sarah has appreciated the accessibility Devon has to offer, and she told us: “I personally have enjoyed going to Devon over the past few years. There are a number of accessible-friendly locations you can stay at, which offer anything from easy access, to fully accessible for people of any ability. Places such as the Donkey Sanctuary are well equipped to have visitors who need extra help, offering a choice of rentable scooters, wheelchairs and more, which was a huge thing for me and has left me with fond memories and the want to return.”

London, England

You don’t have to leave the city lifestyle for a good staycation, however. London is a busy and densely packed space with myriad things to do. You could spend a lifetime in the city and still not see everything there is to see! Thanks to the development here, accessibility levels are often very high and as such, you can feel a bit more comfortable on your trip.

The World in my Words blogger Holly did a wheelchair walk up the O2 area in Greenwich and she told us “I would highly recommend this experience whether it’s just for yourself or a group adventure with friends or family. The guides absolutely added to our experience they knew what they were doing, they made me feel completely comfortable and told us lots of stories about London and the O2.”

shopping in glasgow, scotland

Glasgow, Scotland

It’s not just the English cities that can offer an amazing experience, Glasgow in Scotland is actually well known for its accessibility. Although the city is built across seven hills, it’s done a great deal to make itself as accessible as possible and can give you an authentic Scottish experience without a struggle.

Discussing the city, Able Magazine had this to say: “Disabled residents of Glasgow will talk about a generally accessible city and will happily explain, for example, that the city centre’s two main shopping thoroughfares are pedestrianised and that they, along with two excellent shopping malls (the Buchanan Galleries and St Enoch Centre) are largely accessible. Perhaps, as a result of the proportion of disabled people in its population, Glasgow makes a great deal of effort to provide suitable access and facilities.”

Isle of Wight

The small Isle of Wight is a dream holiday location, and especially brilliant for those who may be looking to take children away on their first ‘big holiday’. Take a ferry or hovercraft over The Solent and visit this dreamy island where nature and outdoor adventure take precedent.

Isle Access is an organisation working to make the Island as accessible as possible for all. They not only do a lot of work with business and attractions on the island but also offer some great guides and advice for those who wish to travel there and want to know more about their options.

Sheffield, England

Located towards the south of Yorkshire, Sheffield is most known for the large role it played in the industrial revolution. However, since then this city has come on leaps and bounds, but also kept strong reminders of its industrial past. The city feels youthful with independent shops, cafes and bars but also keeps its hard-working traditions alive and as such, there is plenty to see and do here.

A Mum Reviews blogger Petra told us: “Sheffield Botanical Gardens is beautiful all year round and easily accessible too with wide paths all around. Enjoy seeing the beautiful gardens and the wildlife as you make your way around. Take a packed lunch to enjoy there or move onto Ecclesall Road nearby to enjoy a meal at one of the restaurants on this cute shopping street.”

view from snowdon, wales.jpg

Snowdonia, Wales

Climbing a mountain is something that is on many people’s bucket list, however, we understand that with limited mobility this may be a much harder goal to achieve. However, it doesn’t mean it’s impossible and taking a visit to stunning Snowdonia in Wales can help you reach the summit.

As well as a truly stunning surrounding, Snowdon benefits from the Snowdon Mountain Railway, meaning you can catch a wheelchair-friendly train service to the summit and back down again. Equally, you can catch the train to the summit and walk back down the mountain again, or even to Clogwyn Station which allows you to walk the final mile to the peak.

Brighton, England

One of the most youthful and vibrant cities in the UK, Brighton & Hove is a wonder for culture lovers. With myriad restaurants and cafes, amazing shopping and a great seaside town feel, there is plenty to love. Brighton also benefits from some wonderful south coast weather conditions.

Ruby Rose Sews spoke to us about Brighton, she told us: “Brighton is such an inclusive city and so many of its attractions are accessible. We have the Sea Life Centre and vibrant shopping in the Laines. Although the beach is pebbles there are lots of things to do up on the promenade, or just watch the world go by.”

Belfast, Northern Ireland

Whether you are based in Northern Ireland, or you want to enjoy a short flight or ferry ride to pastures new, Belfast, the capital, has plenty to offer from both a cultural and accessibility perspective. Uncover more about the amazing heritage and history of this turbulent country and do so with ease as Belfast’s effort to embrace all things accessible shines through.

In fact, in the article What is the most accessible attraction in the UK?, Handicare ranked Titanic Belfast (along with Stonehenge) in first position with a perfect score in all categories. What’s more, the amazing team at Titanic Belfast had this to say about the result: “We are very proud to be consistently recognised as industry leaders on a local, national and international level for our accessibility standards. Accessibility was a very important part of our design and is always a key consideration for us. We aim to ensure that our visitors and employees access requirements are not only fully met but exceeded so everyone can enjoy the experience.”

Please note: With all locations, where accessibility concerns arise it is always a great idea to call your accommodation and any attractions you intend to visit ahead of the trip to discuss what they can offer. This way, you can ensure that your trip will go smoothly with no hiccups.

Accessible staycation destinations in the UK:

  • Devon, England
  • London, England
  • Glasgow, Scotland
  • Isle of Wight
  • Sheffield, England
  • Snowdonia, Wales
  • Brighton, England
  • Belfast, Northern Ireland

We offer a range of mobility aids for anyone who is looking to gain some more independence within their own home, and our trained advisors are always on hand if you have any questions.

For more guides, news and advice, be sure to check out our blog.