Take inspiration for your next holiday with these much-loved British destinations that have stunning foreign namesakes


WHILE we might be stuck at home for a little while yet, there is nothing to stop us dreaming of faraway places that feature some very British names . . . and traditions, even.

Here, SARAH TURNER checks out namesakes of some of our most-loved domestic spots. These should give you some inspiration for planning trips once all this is over.

 These places should give you some inspiration for planning your holidays when the pandemic is over - such as the other Margate, in Australia
These places should give you some inspiration for planning your holidays when the pandemic is over – such as the other Margate, in AustraliaCredit: Alamy

Birmingham (Alabama)

IN 1871 the founders of Birmingham, Alabama, chose to name their new city after the British one as they hoped to replicate its wealth and energy.

Just like the West Mids version, the Birmingham in America has a strong manufacturing heritage.

 Birmingham in Alabama was named after the British city
Birmingham in Alabama was named after the British cityCredit: Alamy
 The British Birmingham is a cultural powerhouse
The British Birmingham is a cultural powerhouseCredit: Getty – Contributor

Alabama’s Birmingham doesn’t have canals or brilliant balti, but like our Brum, it’s also a cultural powerhouse, with opera, music and museums, including one devoted to its role in the American Civil Rights movement.

In recent years, the hotel and food scene has taken off, too.

Try restaurant Fancy’s On 5th (fancyson5th.com) for generous portions of feel-good Southern dishes, including shrimps, oysters and burgers.

Getting there: Flights with American Airlines start at £655 return, via Dallas. See aa.com. The art-deco Redmont Hotel has rooms from £89. See hilton.com.

Speyside (Tobago)

THIS Speyside may not have salmon fishing, or some of the world’s finest whisky distilleries, but it does have the laidback charm typical of Tobago.

It also has postcard-worthy crescents of golden, sandy beaches featuring palm trees and ­gingerbread cottages.

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 Speyside in Tobago has idyllic beaches with palm trees and gingerbread cottages
Speyside in Tobago has idyllic beaches with palm trees and gingerbread cottagesCredit: Alamy
 Fly fishing on the River Spey in Scotland
Fly fishing on the River Spey in ScotlandCredit: Alamy

As an added bonus, there’s Jemma’s Seaview Kitchen. Built into a tree on the beach, it serves some of the island’s best Caribbean food, including jerk chicken and lobster and shrimp.

If you want to head to Tobago’s capital – which also sounds familiar – Scarborough is just 26 miles away. Take the scenic route and on the way check out the beautiful bay of Culloden.

Getting there: British Airways Holidays offers seven nights at the 4H Blue Waters Inn, from £999pp, travelling in February 2021. Includes return flights from Gatwick and full breakfast. Book by May 31. See ba.com/tobago or call 0344 493 0120.

Llandudno (South Africa)

IN 1903, Mrs Wege of Cape Town, fresh from a trip to the UK, declared that this small bay looked just like the Welsh seaside resort of Llandudno.

On the west side of Table Mountain, it’s a lot quieter than its ­North Wales counterpart.

 Llandudno in Cape Town is on the west side of Table Mountain
Llandudno in Cape Town is on the west side of Table MountainCredit: Alamy
 The Welsh town has trams, beautiful piers and marauding goats
The Welsh town has trams, beautiful piers and marauding goatsCredit: Getty – Contributor

There aren’t any trams, piers or marauding goats but it’s just as beautiful as the Welsh town, with dramatic boulders and a sweep of sand.

Surrounded by posh houses, it’s a well-kept secret but buses (108/109) will drop you off from Cape Town.

Bring a British-style picnic with you; there aren’t any restaurants but you can get cold drinks and rent sunbeds and umbrellas.

Getting there: British Airways Holidays has seven nights at 5H The Twelve Apostles, from £1,699pp, in February, 2021. Includes return flights from Gatwick and full breakfast. Book by May 31. See ba.com/capetown or call 0344 493 0123.

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Margate (Australia)

AS well as Perth, Australia boasts a host of copycat names including Darlington, Newcastle and Epping.

But Margate, in Queensland, runs almost neck and neck with its counterpart in Kent.

 Margate is a ­beautiful sandy beach with a family feel just like Kent
Margate is a ­beautiful sandy beach with a family feel just like KentCredit: Alamy
 The counterpart in Kent has the Turner Contemporary Gallery
The counterpart in Kent has the Turner Contemporary GalleryCredit: Getty – Contributor

The Brisbane version does not have Dreamland’s retro funfair or the Turner Contemporary Gallery – but it ­represents a fine slice of old-fashioned Oz, with a ­beautiful sandy beach and family feel.

Just like at its British ­counterpart, you can get superb fish and chips on the seafront if you head to the Seafood Lovers Cafe (seafoodlovers cafe.com.au).

Getting there: Flights with Qantas to Brisbane start at £917 return. See ­qantas.com. Rooms at the Sebel Margate are from £62 (thesebelbrisbane.com).

Christchurch (Barbados)

WITH British-style bobbies and red letterboxes, at first glance, Christchurch in Barbados is just as gentle as its Dorset counterpart.

But this is where the placid waters of Barbados’s Platinum coast get pepped up with the surfer and party vibe of St Lawrence Gap.

 Some of Christchurch's beaches also have British names such as Dover or Hastings
Some of Christchurch’s beaches also have British names such as Dover or HastingsCredit: Alamy
 Christchurch in Dorset is just as gentle as its Barbados counterpart
Christchurch in Dorset is just as gentle as its Barbados counterpartCredit: Getty – Contributor

On Fridays, Oistins Fish Fry brings the rest of ­Barbados to Christchurch for a perfect blend of street food and reggae music.

Even some of Christchurch’s beaches have British names; including Dover, Worthing and Hastings, and all feature ­glorious golden sand and beach bars.

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Getting there: A week room-only at the Coconut Court Beach Hotel starts from £909pp including direct Virgin Atlantic flights from Heathrow on June 5, 2021. To book, see virginholidays.co.uk or call 0344 557 3859.

Aberdeen (Hong Kong)

FAR from the Granite City, its Asian twin manages to blend history with high-rises.

The first part of Hong Kong to be colonised, this Aberdeen’s harbour is home to a floating market and restaurants.

 Aberdeen's habour is home to Hong Kong's famous floating restaurants and market
Aberdeen’s habour is home to Hong Kong’s famous floating restaurants and marketCredit: Alamy
 The Scottish city has a stunning centre
The Scottish city has a stunning centreCredit: Getty – Contributor

At the weekend the promenade is full of people practising tai chi and there are walks into the mountains around reservoirs.

It’s all about the views and you’ll get a great one from the rooftop bar at Ovolo Southside hotel.

Check out the Jumbo Kingdom, a floating restaurant that sits among the small fishing boats – a crazy concoction bedecked in thousands of lights and just a free shuttle boat from the pier.

Getting there: Flights with Cathay Pacific to Hong Kong start at £763 return. See ­cathaypacific.com. The Ovolo Southside has rooms from £75 a night. See ovolohotels.com/ovolo/southside.

Banff (Canada)

NICE as the original seaside town in northern Scotland is, you can see why its Canadian namesake has grabbed rather more attention.

Surrounded by the Rockies, with the deep-blue Lake Louise close by and hot springs too, Banff in the Canadian province of Alberta is a wonderful year-round holiday destination.

 Banff is a wonderful year-round holiday destination
Banff is a wonderful year-round holiday destinationCredit: Alamy
 The original seaside town in northern Scotland
The original seaside town in northern ScotlandCredit: Abermedia / Michal Wachucik

It boasts skiing in winter, hiking, biking and watersports in summer plus a great food scene and annual film and book festivals.

Visitors can also ride the Banff Gondola up Sulphur Mountain.

Getting there: Seven nights at the Banff Aspen Lodge including flights and B&B accommodation starts at £1,115pp with Crystal Ski. See crystalski.co.uk/ski-deals/canada-ski-deals.

  • Prices correct at time of press and subject to change.
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