The great British bank holiday hotspots that look just like wonders abroad – so can you guess the difference?


WE’RE on course for a sizzling Bank Holiday weekend, with temperatures higher than Ibiza.

Travel abroad still proving tricky, but there is no need to jump on a plane to get the best of sunshine break.

The UK has its own Great British versions of many of the top global wonders

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The UK has its own Great British versions of many of the top global wondersCredit: Alamy

The UK has its own Great British versions of many of the top global wonders.

Travel Editor Lisa Minot tours the country to reveal copycat destinations at home that will remind you of some the world’s most amazing places.

St Michael’s Mount (Mont-Saint-Michel)

FOR a bit of romance, you can’t beat a castle on an island cut off by the tides – and St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall is just as fascinating as its counterpart Mont-Saint-Michel in Normandy.

The Cornish gem just off the coast of the town of Marazion was once the home of Bronze Age hunters and Benedictine monks.

St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall was once the home of Bronze Age hunters and Benedictine monks

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St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall was once the home of Bronze Age hunters and Benedictine monksCredit: 4Corners Images
Mont-Saint-Michel in Normandy, a castle on an island, is the French counterpart of the Cornish gem

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Mont-Saint-Michel in Normandy, a castle on an island, is the French counterpart of the Cornish gemCredit: Shutterstock

Now owned by the National Trust, it was the home of the St Aubyn family for more than 500 years.

There are still around 30 people living on the island and you can climb aboard amphibious vehicles to access it when the tide is high.

Tickets cost £10.50 adults, from £5 children. See stmichaelsmount.co.uk.

STAY: The Marazion Hotel overlooks St Michael’s Mount and has double rooms from £180 a night, including breakfast, in June.

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See marazionhotel.co.uk.

Minack Theatre (Greece)

IT’S a Greek tragedy we can’t head to the Med but you only have to go to Cornwall to enjoy our very own astonishing amphitheatre.

When local Rowena Carr decided she wanted to stage The Tempest in her back garden in 1932 she created a small open-air theatre – then continued to expand it.

The Minack on the cliffs over the Cornish sea seats 750 people

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The Minack on the cliffs over the Cornish sea seats 750 peopleCredit: Getty – Contributor
So you don't have to visit an amphitheatre in Greece to catch the show

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So you don’t have to visit an amphitheatre in Greece to catch the showCredit: Getty

The Minack on the cliffs over the sea, seats 750 people.

A popular attraction, it includes gardens, exhibitions and a cafe.

Adults £6, children £3, theatre tickets from £10. See minack.com.

STAY: Go back to nature at the nearby Treen Farm Campsite in St Levan that has pitches from £4 per tent. See treenfarmcampsite.com.

Brighton Royal Pavilion (Taj Mahal)

INDIA’S Taj Mahal was built by the emperor for his wife in the 1600s, while the Prince Regent may have had his own romantic liaisons in mind with the construction of the Brighton Royal Pavilion in the 18th century.

The racy royal took a fancy to the city for its sea air and chance to meet up with his many mistresses, finally resulting in this stunning building of white turrets and pillars.

The Prince Regent built this stunning building of white turrets and pillars in Brighton

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The Prince Regent built this stunning building of white turrets and pillars in BrightonCredit: Shutterstock
The Taj Mahal was built by the emperor for his wife in the 1600s

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The Taj Mahal was built by the emperor for his wife in the 1600sCredit: Shutterstock

Tours of the inside, which boasts silk wallpaper, cost £15 adults, £9 children. See brightonmuseums.org.uk/royalpavilion.

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STAY: The Mercure Brighton Seafront has rooms from £80 per night in June. See mercurebrighton.co.uk.

Norfolk (Provence)

A FIELD of lavender looks great on Instagram, but you don’t have to travel to the South of France to pose in a purple haze.

The town of Heacham has all you need just along the A149 towards the coast.

The town of Heacham has all you need just along the A149 towards the Norfolk coast

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The town of Heacham has all you need just along the A149 towards the Norfolk coastCredit: Alamy
You don’t have to travel to the South of France to pose in a lavender field

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You don’t have to travel to the South of France to pose in a lavender fieldCredit: Shutterstock

Founded in 1932, Norfolk Lavender farm now spreads over 100 acres and has regular tours of the fields and also the distillery that produces oil from the crop.

Sample lavender scones and cakes at the cafe and buy plants to take home with you.

Tours start from £2.50. See norfolk-lavender.co.uk.

STAY: Three nights at ParkDean Resorts’ Heacham Beach Holiday Park starts at £309 for six in June. See parkdeanresorts.co.uk.

Hadrian’s Wall (Great Wall of China)

CREATED in AD122 by Hadrian’s Roman army to stop the Scots invading England, Hadrian’s Wall is not as big as China’s one but is still an astonishing feat of engineering

You can explore the 73-mile stretch from Solway Firth in Cumbria to Wallsend on the River Tyne with a selection of walking trails.

Hadrian’s Wall is not as big as China’s but is still an astonishing feat of engineering

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Hadrian’s Wall is not as big as China’s but is still an astonishing feat of engineeringCredit: Getty
So don't go all the way to China - explore the 73-mile stretch from Solway Firth in Cumbria to Wallsend on the River Tyne

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So don’t go all the way to China – explore the 73-mile stretch from Solway Firth in Cumbria to Wallsend on the River TyneCredit: Getty

Visit the Roman Army Museum at Vindolanda, Northum. Entry £12.60 adults, £7.20 children.

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See vindolanda.com and english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/hadrians-wall.

STAY: Stanegate Hideaways near Hexham has two cute wooden huts sleeping two. A three-night break in June costs from £297. See stanegatehideaways.co.uk.

Portmeirion (Portofino)

NESTLED on Italy’s Amalfi coast, Portofino’s charming piazzas and multi-coloured cute houses are a hit with tourists.

But you can enjoy the same vibe in North Wales.

Portmeirion in Wales is an incredible Italianate village created by eccentric architect Clough Williams-Ellis in 1925

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Portmeirion in Wales is an incredible Italianate village created by eccentric architect Clough Williams-Ellis in 1925Credit: Shutterstock
Portofino’s charming piazzas and multi-coloured cute houses are a hit with tourists

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Portofino’s charming piazzas and multi-coloured cute houses are a hit with touristsCredit: Shutterstock

Portmeirion is an incredible Italianate village created by eccentric architect Clough Williams-Ellis in 1925, complete with al-fresco dining areas and acres of gardens.

Cult TV series The Prisoner was filmed there in the 1960s. Adult tickets £7-£12, kids free to £8. See portmeirion.wales/visit.

STAY: Portmeirion Hotel has double rooms from £289 a night in June. See portmeirion.wales/stay/accommodation/portmeirion-hotel.

Kent (Napa Valley)

A QUIET revolution has seen a host of top-quality vineyards sprout up across the Garden of England that can rightly claim to be just as successful as California’s Napa Valley in producing some vintage wines.

Many offer tours and even stays where you can find out all about the process.

The Garden of England can rightly claim to be just as successful as foreign vineyards

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The Garden of England can rightly claim to be just as successful as foreign vineyardsCredit: Getty
California’s Napa Valley produces some vintage wines just like in Kent

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California’s Napa Valley produces some vintage wines just like in KentCredit: Getty

Visit Chapel Down, known as the home of English winemaking, or discover the history of Gusbourne on its walking and tasting tours.

See chapeldown.com, gusbourne.com and winegardenofengland.co.uk.

STAY: The Hotel Du Vin in Tunbridge Wells is ideally placed for surrounding vineyards. See hotelduvin.com.

Kilt Rock and Mealt Falls (Iceland)

TO match the dramatic natural landscape of Iceland you only need go as far as Scotland’s Inner Hebrides.

Try the Isle of Skye’s Kilt Rock – a looming collection of black balsalt columns – and Mealt Falls, a plume of water that plunges 100 metres into the sea.

A view of Kilt Rock and Mealt Waterfall on the Isle of Skye

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A view of Kilt Rock and Mealt Waterfall on the Isle of SkyeCredit: Getty
Iceland is full of dramatic natural landscapes

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Iceland is full of dramatic natural landscapesCredit: Getty

The best viewpoint is at Elishader, on the Trotternish Peninsula.

Fill your Instagram with snaps from here and you’ll fool plenty of people you’re actually in the Nordics, rather than Scotland.

STAY: The Portree Hotel, near Kilt Rock, has double rooms from £130 per night in June, including breakfast. See theportreehotel.com.





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