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14+ Activities & Destinations To Add To Your UK Spring Bucket List

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Spring has officially arrived here in the UK. Although the weather is still very hit-and-miss, the blossom is on the trees, wildflowers are starting to pop up here, there and everywhere and birdsong fills the air. 

And now you’re wondering what should be on your UK spring bucket list.

As always, we’ve got you covered with a whole bunch of spring-inspired activities and destinations in the UK you’re sure to love.

Hanbury Hall Flowers
Tulips and hyacinths at Hanbury Hall & Gardens in April

UK Spring Bucket List Activities, Things To Do & Places To Visit

Before we get into it, I just want to clarify that this isn’t a generic spring bucket list. We’ve lived in the UK for a lifetime now, so this list includes all of the things we most look forward to once spring rolls around in March through May. 

After all, alongside autumn, spring is one of our favourite seasons and we believe it to be one of the best times to explore the UK.

There’s a good chance of some sunshine, crowds are fewer, daylight hours are longer and prices are generally cheaper than during the summer months.

So… if you want to don your walking shoes and go in search of some of the best spring destinations in the UK, marvel at the blossom on the trees and the wildflowers on the ground, then happy reading and wandering!

Marvel at the blossom on the trees

Spring blossom
Blossom on the trees in April

While some trees produce blossom as early as February here in the UK, it’s most common to see blossom throughout the spring months.

In particular, I most look forward to seeing cherry plum trees in March and crab apple trees in May because I think these fruit trees produce the most beautiful and delicate blossoms.

You’ll find blossoming trees all over the UK at this time of year. But for the very best floral displays, you’ll probably want to visit:

Wander through a bluebell wood

It’s not just blossoming trees you can look forward to in spring. The UK is also renowned for its wild bluebells that carpet the grounds of ancient woodlands; known locally as “bluebell woods”. 

But what some people don’t know is that there are a myriad places – not just woodlands – that showcase the beauties of wild bluebells.

READ NEXT: When & Where To See Wild Bluebells in the UK

Admire the spring flowers

Alongside blankets of bluebells, here are some other spring flowers you can look forward to seeing throughout the UK at this time of year:

  • Cowslip
  • Tulips
  • Daffodils
  • Wood anemone
  • Cuckooflower (also known as Lady’s Smock)
  • Dog violets
  • Wild garlic
  • Wild primrose
Wild Primrose in the UK
Wild primrose in March
Wild garlic at Hurlstone Point
Wild garlic in April

Watch the spring wildlife

And romping, frolicking and gliding through those floral displays? Why spring wildlife, of course!

In particular, this is the best time of year to join a badger-watching tour or excursion. Female badgers usually give birth to their cubs in February, then by mid-April, they’ve emerged from hibernation to go in search of food.

It’s rather difficult to find badgers as they tend to roam around through dusk and at night.

However, by following the advice on badger.org.uk or by heading to a specially-designed badger hide like this one, you may just spot a badger or two.

Alongside badgers, you can also look forward to the UK’s lambing season, which is typically in March and April. This is such a special season in the UK and you certainly won’t have to go far to spot your first lamb out in the countryside.

We saw a paddock of them just the other day in fact – during our most recent wander around the Cotswolds countryside close to where we live.

Finally, spring in the UK is also the perfect time to see hares boxing each other, migrating birds from the south and many a beautiful butterfly

Stratford-upon-Avon Butterfly Farm
British butterfly at the Butterfly Farm in Stratford-upon-Avon

Attend a fun Easter event or festival

You’ll find various fun Easter events and spring-themed festivals throughout the UK for both adults and kids alike.

In particular, children can look forward to Easter Egg hunts, such as ones advertised by local towns and villages or at National Trust properties.

As for the adults, there are various festivals to look forward to at this time of year. Some of the more well-known ones include the:

Visit grand castles and stately homes

For many of us, one of the main reasons why we explore the UK throughout the spring months is because of the flowers and wildlife and all of the beautiful things you can look forward to seeing outdoors. 

While countryside rambles and woodland wanders are especially wonderful at this time of year; so too are grand castles and stately homes. 

Osborne House on the Isle of Wight
Osborne on the Isle of Wight in May

Not only will they be less busy than in the summer months when the large coach tours arrive and the peak travel season begins, but you can also look forward to seeing spring flowers, blossoming trees and landscaped gardens these kinds of places are renowned for.

You’ll also find many of the private estates that are closed through the winter start to open up again for the spring months, such as some of our favourites:

Explore the UK’s best gardens

Speaking of landscaped gardens, there are a whole host of beautiful gardens you can explore here in the UK. And as you might imagine, spring and summer are the best times to visit.

Some of our favourite gardens at this time of year include:

Why not also take a picnic with you if the weather isn’t too wet or windy? And for the best floral displays in spring, we’d recommend timing your visit for later on in the season such as late April or May.

West Green House Garden
West Green House Garden in April

Use your National Trust membership

When you think about the UK, it’s more often than not the quintessential chocolate box landscapes that spring to mind. You might picture the rolling hills, the farmlands, the bluebells and the historic castles and estates.

The National Trust owns a large proportion of these lands and buildings and helps to care for them. As a charity in its own right, the majority of its funds come from membership fees and donations.

Whether it’s walking out in the countryside, learning about historic buildings, or just saving money on car parking fees, being a member of the National Trust brings with it so many benefits.

And there are lots of places where you can really enjoy being a National Trust member during the spring and summer months. Far too many for us to list here, so you might enjoy some of our other blog posts linked below.


Go on a long walk or hike

Once spring arrives, the milder weather usually also arrives as well as more sunshine – especially as we move into late spring. 

Now’s the perfect time to go on a long walk or hike you wouldn’t have enjoyed in winter. Some of our favourites in the UK include:

Views from the Eagle's Nest in Wales
The view from the top of Eagle’s Nest Viewpoint in the Wye Valley

Head to the coast

Speaking of mild weather and more sunshine, this is also a beautiful time of year to visit the coast. Whether you want to wander along the coastline, take in the views or relax on the beach – when it’s not too wet, windy or blustery, of course.

Shanklin, Isle of Wight
Shanklin Beach on the Isle of Wight in May

In our opinion, you’ll find some of the UK’s most beautiful coastlines in Pembrokeshire in Wales, Cornwall (both north and south), Devon, Dorset and Scotland – especially on the Isle of Skye. 

Spring is also a great time of year to visit Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland because – as you might’ve guessed – there should be fewer crowds there than in the summer months.

Scott at Giant's Causeway
Visiting Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland in April

Leave the mainland

Speaking of epic coastlines, spring is also an ideal time of year to leave the mainland for a weekend getaway or longer.

The reason? Well, these places will be quieter than in the summer months but it’s also the perfect time of year to see migrating birds from the south such as puffins. For example, you can see puffins on Skomer Island and the Isles of Scilly at this time of year.

Or, if you’d rather relax on beaches, wander around botanical gardens and visit Queen Victoria’s summer residence, then a spring trip to the Isle of Wight is the one for you. We spent a long weekend there in May and I’m happy to report that the weather actually behaved itself!

The Needles, Isle of Wight
Admiring The Needles on the Isle of Wight in May

Alternatively, you can head to the Channel Islands to enjoy a spring getaway – once again with fewer crowds than in summer yet still considerably better weather than during other times of the year. 

READ NEXT: Fabulous Isle of Wight Itinerary For First Time Visitors

Enjoy a chic city break

With the UK experiencing more daylight hours and blue skies than in winter and autumn, and with prices being much lower than in the summer, spring is also the perfect time of year for a chic city break or two.

Some of the most popular cities in the UK for a long weekend include London, Bristol, Edinburgh, Manchester, Cambridge, Oxford, York, Bath and Brighton. Bath gets our vote, though!

Views of Bath and Pulteney Bridge
Bath waking up for the spring months

Explore museums and art galleries

And on those rainy days in April when the heavens have opened, there’s a myriad of museums to visit all across the country – with some even being free to visit.

In our opinion, some of the UK’s best museums include the Natural History Museum in London, The British Museum in London, Brunel’s SS Great Britain in Bristol, Tate St Ives in Cornwall and The Roman Baths in Bath.

Become a “Sunday Driver”

As the UK is a relatively small island, it’s easy to see a lot in a short space of time – especially if you have access to a car.

And as there are more daylight hours in the spring months, you could drive for miles and miles and still get to spend the best of the day somewhere picturesque and interesting.

Likewise, you might also enjoy driving around, admiring the landscapes before pulling over somewhere to admire a stunning vista, enjoy a traditional pub meal or stop for tea and cake. 

We call these “Sunday Drivers” in the UK and you’ll see plenty of them in the spring and summer months.

Some of our most favourite places for a mini road trip include Scotland, Cornwall, the Cotswolds, Wales, the Peak District and the Lake District.

Isle of Skye, Scotland
The Isle of Skye in Scotland on a sunny spring day

Read More About Spring in the UK

If you’re unfamiliar with the UK, then here are some final things you should know about springtime here.

When is spring in the UK?

Generally speaking, we use the astronomical calendar in the UK. This calendar states that spring starts on the date of the Spring Equinox, which is usually on March 20th, although it can fall on the 19th or 21st in some years, and lasts until the Summer Solstice, which is usually June 21st. According to this calendar, spring would usually be from March 20th until June 21st.

What’s the weather like?

Spring in the UK is usually when we all rejoice that the sun is starting to come out more and is getting us geared up for the summer. This year feels a little different so far, but here’s hoping the weather improves soon.

If you do see blue skies and sunshine, don’t be too fooled as the temperatures can still be fairly cool – especially towards the start of spring. Spring temperatures in the UK typically range from 8°C to 13°C although we have had some warmer temperatures in more recent years.

Also, the UK is still an island and subject to very unpredictable weather, so you should always expect rain on some days – especially in April when “April Showers” are common. Don’t forget the saying: “April Showers Bring May Flowers.”

Pretty pink flowers at Ventnor Botanic Garden, Isle of Wight
Beautiful flowers on the Isle of Wight in May

What to pack for a spring trip to the UK

As with exploring the UK in any other season, you should be prepared for unpredictable weather.

Although the sun should shine fairly frequently in spring, you should also expect rain (especially in March and April), alongside chilly temperatures and high winds.

Because of this, we recommend wearing layers in spring. You may need to strip off a little when the sun shines, while wind and rain call for extra layers.

Generally speaking, here are a few essential items you’ll need when exploring the UK in the spring months:

  • Long-sleeved tops, jumpers or cardigans
  • Trousers, jeans or leggings
  • Waterproof coat or jacket
  • Walking boots for countryside rambles
  • Smart waterproof boots for city breaks in case of rain
  • Umbrella

Take a look at our UK packing list for a more extensive list of items you’ll need in the UK >>

Discover More Amazing Places To Visit in the UK

We’ve been writing about the UK since 2016, which means we have a whole host of articles you might enjoy reading and getting inspiration from. You can find all of them here.

Explore The UK Through The Seasons

Call us biased but we think there’s much to love about exploring the UK throughout the entire year – as you’ll see from our other seasonal travel guides:

Over to you now – what’s on YOUR UK spring bucket list? We’re always after some inspiration, so please do share away in the comments below…

Did you enjoy this list of top things to see and do in the UK in spring? Why not pin or bookmark it now, so you can refer back to it later?

14+ Activities & Destinations To Add To Your UK Spring Bucket List
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Justine Jenkins

Justine is one half of the married couple behind the Wanderers of the World travel blog. She lives in Bristol, UK and has travelled extensively within Europe and beyond since 2013. After her trips, she shares detailed travel itineraries, helpful travel guides and inspiring blog posts about the places she's been to. When she's not travelling overseas, you'll find her joining her husband, Scott on various day trips, weekend getaways and walks within the UK, which she also writes about on Wanderers of the World. Aside from travelling and writing, she also loves reading, crafting and learning about nature.

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