Short Trips: Weekend Travel Destinations

where to go travel for two days

There are so many places you could go for a two-day trip! Here are some ideas:

- India - India is a country that is replete with historical and natural wonders. The topography of the land varies, and you can find everything from deserts to beaches, and majestic snow-clad mountains. Some places to visit include Goa, Pondicherry, Rishikesh, and Jaipur.

- The UK - The UK has a diverse range of attractions, from historical cities to stunning natural landscapes. You could visit London, Oxford, the Cotswolds, Edinburgh, and Cardiff.

- The USA - The USA is a large country with a variety of attractions. You could visit New York, San Diego, Portland, and Maui.

- Indonesia - Indonesia is a tropical destination with stunning beaches, cultural sites, and plenty of hotels to match every budget. You could spend time in Ubud, Kuta, and Nusa Dua.

Characteristics Values
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Country India
Number of days 2
Best time to visit November to March
Major sightseeing spots Chapora river and fort, Basilica of Bom Jesus, Dudhsagar Falls, Naval Aviation Museum, Fort Aguada, Calangute Beach

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London

Day One

Start your day with a stroll through Hyde Park, one of London's largest and most famous parks. Take in the peaceful atmosphere and admire the Serpentine Lake before making your way to Buckingham Palace, the official residence of the Queen. Arrive in time for the Changing of the Guard ceremony, which usually takes place at 11 am. After the ceremony, head to Westminster Abbey, the Houses of Parliament, and Big Ben. These iconic landmarks are all within walking distance of each other.

In the afternoon, visit one of London's world-class museums, such as the British Museum, the Natural History Museum, or the Tate Modern. Each museum offers a unique experience and is definitely worth a visit.

As the day turns to evening, make your way to Oxford Street and Piccadilly Circus for some shopping and people-watching. This bustling area is always lively and full of energy. You can also explore the nearby Covent Garden, known for its shops, restaurants, and street performers.

Day Two

Begin your second day in London with a visit to Notting Hill, a charming neighbourhood known for its colourful houses and the famous Portobello Road Market. After exploring Notting Hill, head to the London Eye for breathtaking views of the city. A Thames River cruise is also a great option to see the city from a different perspective.

In the afternoon, explore the hip and trendy neighbourhood of Shoreditch, known for its street art, vintage markets, and eclectic cafes and bars. Brick Lane Market is a must-visit, with its unique finds and diverse food offerings.

End your day with dinner and cocktails in Shoreditch, or opt for a pub crawl to experience London's vibrant nightlife.

Other Attractions

If you have some extra time or want to customise your itinerary, here are some other popular attractions in London:

  • The Tower of London: A historic castle with a rich history, home to the Crown Jewels.
  • Tower Bridge: An iconic bridge with a fascinating exhibition and stunning views.
  • The View from the Shard: An observation deck offering panoramic views of the city from 244 meters high.
  • Kensington Palace: A royal residence set in beautiful gardens, currently the home of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
  • Harrods: One of the most famous department stores in the world, known for its luxury and designer brands.
  • St. Paul's Cathedral: A breathtaking work of architecture with a rich history, recognised as a symbol of London's splendour.

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Oxford

Two Days in Oxford

Day 1: Exploring the City Centre

Start your day by climbing the tower of the University Church of St Mary the Virgin on the High Street. Enjoy the sweeping views of the city and capture photos of the iconic Radcliffe Camera. This circular library is part of the Bodleian Library, one of the oldest in Europe, with over 11 million books. Join a tour of the Bodleian Library to access Duke Humfrey's medieval library and explore the underground reading rooms.

Afterwards, head to Broad Street to visit Blackwell's bookshop, where you'll find the vast Norrington Room in the basement, boasting an impressive collection of books. Then, stop for lunch at the nearby Covered Market, offering a variety of dining options, from traditional pies to international cuisine.

In the afternoon, make your way to the Ashmolean Museum, Britain's oldest public museum. Admire the diverse collection, including artworks by Turner and Canaletto, and ancient artefacts like Guy Fawkes' lantern. The museum's rooftop restaurant and terrace provide a perfect spot for afternoon tea with a view.

As the day turns to evening, wander down Little Clarendon Street and Walton Street to explore galleries like the Rona Gallery and the Oxford Ceramics Gallery. Before dinner, enjoy a cocktail at the Oxford Wine Café. For dinner, head to Jericho and dine at The Old Bookbinders, a hidden gem serving French cuisine.

Day 2: College Charm and Countryside Excursion

Start your second day by visiting Christ Church, one of the largest and most impressive Oxford colleges. With a rich history dating back to 1525, Christ Church has educated 13 British prime ministers and inspired authors like Lewis Carroll.

From Christ Church, walk over to Modern Art Oxford to explore contemporary visual arts exhibitions. Then, delve into Oxford's past with a visit to Oxford Castle and Prison, where you can learn about the grisly tales of former inmates.

For lunch, head to Quod on Queen Street, known for its lively atmosphere and contemporary artworks. After lunch, make your way to the Pitt Rivers Museum, a fascinating anthropological museum with a vast collection of artefacts from around the world.

In the late afternoon, take a stroll down New College Lane and Queens Lane, keeping an eye out for imposing gargoyles. You'll emerge onto the lower end of the High Street, where you can turn left to reach Magdalen College (pronounced 'mawd-lin'). This prestigious college is known for its ornate chapel and beautiful grounds.

As the evening sets in, cross Magdalen Bridge and venture up Cowley Road, Oxford's liveliest road. Enjoy tapas and cocktails at Kazbar, and continue the night with drinks and live music at venues like The Big Society or The Bullingdon.

If you're looking for a more relaxed evening, consider punting along the River Cherwell or the River Thames. You can even opt for a river cruise with afternoon tea included!

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Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is a picturesque area of England, filled with quintessential English countryside. The area is known for its rolling hills, quaint villages, cosy pubs, castles, country houses and manicured gardens. Covering 800 square miles, it can be hard to know where to start, but here is an itinerary to help you plan your trip.

Day 1: Arrival

Arrive in London and get settled into your accommodation.

Day 2: Exploring the Cotswolds

Head to the village of Broadway and climb the Broadway Tower, a Gothic folly built in 1798. It was once used as a countryside retreat and offers views across 16 counties.

Afterwards, head into Broadway for dinner at The Lygon Arms, a coaching inn dating back to the 1300s.

Day 3: Exploring the Cotswolds

Start your day early in Bourton-on-the-Water, known as the 'Venice of the Cotswolds'. Grab a coffee and croissant before taking a walk along the River Windrush, which is crossed by five stone bridges. Explore Bourton in miniature at the Model Village, or see vintage cars and bikes at the Cotswold Motoring Museum.

Next, travel to the twin villages of Upper and Lower Slaughter. Park in Lower Slaughter and follow the shallow River Eye past chocolate-box country cottages to The Old Mill, which has been a watermill since the Domesday Book. Continue along the mile-long path to Upper Slaughter, taking in the views along the way.

Day 4: Exploring the Cotswolds

Head to the village of Bibury, known for its picturesque street, Arlington Row. After taking in the views, go for a walk around the village and stop for coffee and cake at The Little Picnic Shop or The Old Stables.

In the afternoon, explore the town of Burford, with its charming bakeries, pubs and restaurants. Spend some time visiting the independent shops and art galleries, and walk up Burford Hill for some of the best views in the Cotswolds.

Finally, spend some time in the village of Bourton-on-the-Water, with its Dragonfly Maze, Birdland Park, model village and motoring museum.

Day 5: Departure

On your last day, head to the town of Stow-on-the-Wold to see the iconic St. Edwards church, known for its Instagram-worthy doorway. Spend some time exploring the surrounding area, visiting the market square and browsing the shops.

End your trip with a meal and drinks in Broadway, with options including Russel’s Fish and Chips and The Broadway Indian Restaurant.

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Peak District

The Peak District is a beautiful area of the UK, boasting natural beauty, dramatic landscapes, and an abundance of attractions. Here is a detailed 2-day itinerary to make the most of your time in this stunning region.

Day 1: Exploring the South Peak District

Start your day early with a walk along the Dovedale Stepping Stones Trail. This enchanting trail takes you through a picturesque limestone valley, following the gentle River Dove. You'll encounter jaw-dropping rock formations and colossal caves. After this, head to the quaint village of Wetton and take a short trail to Thor's Cave, one of the Peak District's iconic cave formations.

In the afternoon, visit the town of Bakewell, famous for its iconic British pudding, the Bakewell tart. Spend some time strolling along the river, browsing the independent shops, and adding your own lock to the love-lock bridge. If you're interested in stately homes, Chatsworth House is just an 11-minute drive from Bakewell.

Day 2: Mam Tor Ridge Walk and Castleton

Begin your second day with the Mam Tor ridge walk. Mam Tor stands at 517 meters high and offers majestic views. The well-maintained steps and pathways make this walk accessible for all levels. After enjoying the scenery, head to the charming village of Castleton, where you can grab a bite to eat and wander around.

Castleton is home to several show caves and caverns, including Peak Cavern, with the largest cave entrance in Britain, and Treak Cliff Cavern, where you can find the rare fluorite Blue John Stone. You can also visit Peveril Castle, an 11th-century Norman fortress with stunning views over the village and the valley of Cave Dale.

For a sunset experience, drive to New Road and take the short walk to Bamford Edge, which offers breathtaking views of the Peak District and Ladybower Reservoir.

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Manchester

Day 1: Northern Quarter and History

Start your day in the Northern Quarter, a trendy area full of impressive street art, bars, coffee spots, unique stores, and galleries. Grab breakfast at Teacup Kitchen, where tea is taken very seriously, or Hampton & Vouis, a lovely brunch spot.

After breakfast, visit the John Rylands Library, a filming location for Harry Potter. This working library of the University of Manchester has multiple floors and small corridors to explore, and its architecture will make you feel like you've stepped into Hogwarts.

Next, wander over to the Town Hall, and then to Exchange Square, home to high-street and designer shops, as well as the National Football Museum and Manchester Cathedral.

For lunch, head to San Carlo Cicchetti, an Italian restaurant inside the House of Fraser department store, serving small plates of tapas-style food.

In the afternoon, learn about Manchester's past at the free Museum of Science and Industry. Here, you can watch a demonstration of the deafening cotton mill machinery, stand in the waiting room of the world's oldest railway, and crawl through a Victorian sewer.

End your day with drinks at Cloud 23, which offers a killer view from the highest bar in the city, or 20 Stories, the tallest rooftop bar in Manchester.

For dinner, indulge in one of the best pizzas in the UK at Mackie Mayor, a historical building converted into a food market.

Day 2: Culture and Shopping

On your second day, begin with a visit to the Manchester Cathedral. The area around the cathedral is beautiful and historical, with an architecture style that stands out from the busy avenue and the modern Exchange Square.

Afterwards, walk to the nearby Burton Arcade, a unique shopping arcade. If you're visiting with a partner, one of you can explore the shops while the other checks out the nearby Manchester mills, some of which have been converted into luxury accommodations or co-working spaces.

For lunch, there are plenty of nice coffee spots to choose from.

In the afternoon, walk to The University of Manchester and explore the campus, which consists of multiple beautiful and impressive buildings.

If you're a football fan, you can visit Old Trafford Stadium, home to Manchester United, or the Etihad Stadium, home to Manchester City. Both stadiums offer tours, and you can learn about the history and heritage of soccer in Manchester.

For dinner, head to the Curry Mile, a famous strip of restaurants offering a variety of cuisines. Mughli is a great choice, serving excellent sizzlers and a range of spicy dishes.

Other Suggestions:

  • The Whitworth Art Gallery, part of the University of Manchester, features varied exhibitions, including The Starry Messenger installation with sound and light.
  • Manchester Museum, also part of the University, houses a T-Rex skeleton, live animals in a vivarium, and Egyptian mummies.
  • The Imperial War Museum North is a quirky modern building centred around conflicts after 1900.
  • The Lowry art gallery in Salford is easily accessible from the city centre.
  • The Palace Theatre, Opera House, and Royal Exchange offer a variety of performances.

Frequently asked questions

There are many places to go for a 2-day vacation. If you are looking for a beach vacation, you can consider San Diego, California, or Maui, Hawaii. If you are looking for a city break, you can consider New York, USA, or London, England.

You can find the best 2-day getaways by entering your starting location, destination, and travel dates and comparing prices on fantastic 2-day getaway packages available that include flights and accommodation. You could also build your own 2-day getaway by perusing hotels, car rental, things to do, and flights separately.

A good 2-day trip for couples could be a romantic island escape on Maui, Hawaii, or a historic inn in Charleston, South Carolina.

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