United Kingdom Hotels , Flights & Travel Packages
UK Travel Guide : The United Kingdom Tours & Travel Services : Hotels Best Deals & Discounts : Low Cost Flights : Affordable Travel & Holidays Packages
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (the United Kingdom or the UK) is a constitutional monarchy comprising most of the British Isles, and is one of the world's wealthiest nations. The Union comprises four constituent nations: England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. It occupies all of the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern portion of the island of Ireland and most of the remaining British Isles. It is important to remember that the Republic of Ireland is a completely separate country to the United Kingdom, seceding from the Union and gaining its independence in 1922. It counts Ireland, France, Belgium and Netherlands as its nearest neighbours. The UK today is a diverse patchwork of native and immigrant cultures, possessing a fascinating history and dynamic modern culture, both of which remain hugely influential in the wider world. Although Britannia no longer rules the waves, the UK is still a popular destination for many travellers. The capital and largest city of the United Kingdom is London.
Parks : The United Kingdom has an array of National Parks and designated Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty that serve to preserve the country's natural heritage. There are 14 National Parks in total spread across England, Scotland and Wales (9 in England, 2 in Scotland and 3 in Wales) and 49 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (35 in England, 4 in Wales, 9 in Northern Ireland and 1 in both England and Wales). There are no Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Scotland, but there are the equivalent National Scenic Areas, of which there are 35 spread across the country.
Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh, is a magnificently situated royal fortress located on one of the highest points in the city. The castle has been continuously in use for 1000 years and is in excellent condition.
Stonehenge is an ancient stone circle located near the cathedral city of Salisbury in Wiltshire.
The Georgian architecture and Roman baths in Bath.
York Minster (Cathedral) in the historic city of York.
Canterbury Cathedral is the seat of the head of the church of England. Located in the city of Canterbury in Kent
Shakespeare's Birthplace, Stratford-Upon-Avon, is home of the Royal Shakespeare Company.
The ancient and world-renowned universities of Oxford and Cambridge
The Eden Project near St Austell is a massive botanical gardens including indoor rainforest and Mediterranean biodomes.
The Giant's Causeway sixty miles from Belfast on the north coast of Northern Ireland is a World Heritage site and a natural wonder.
Portsmouth Historic Dockyard is home to three of the most important ships ever built and 800 years of naval history.
The UK Cities & Main Attractions : Many cities and towns in the United Kingdom are of interest to travellers. Following is an alphabetical selection of nine - others are listed under their specific regions:
London - the capital city of the United Kingdom and one of the most important cities in the world
Belfast - capital of Northern Ireland and becoming a popular tourist destination, undergoing major renovations and improvements
Birmingham - The UK's second largest city, features great shopping, and is home of the famous Balti and great culture
Bristol - an historical city famed for its Georgian architecture and nautical heritage
Cardiff - capital of Wales, host to varied cultural events and many other modern and historical attractions
Edinburgh - capital of Scotland, home to the largest arts festival in the world and numerous tourist attractions as well as being the second most visited city in the UK
Glasgow - Scotland's largest city, new cultural hotspot, former European City of Culture
Liverpool - Booming city, famous for its prominence in music, sport, nightlife and multiculturalism. Capital of Culture 2008.
Manchester - Thriving bohemian music scene, gay quarter and home to the world's only new work arts festival as well as being the third most visited city in the UK.
Main Attractions :
Isle of Arran
Lake District National Park
Snowdonia National Park
The UK Flights & Airports : When flying to the UK you are most likely to arrive at one of London's five airports,
London Heathrow Airport is one of the world's busiest international airports. Situated 15 miles west of Central London, Heathrow offers a large choice of international destinations, with direct flights to most countries in the world. British Airways  has its hub at Heathrow and offers a wide range of international flights to Europe, North America, Asia, Africa and Australia. There are fewer direct flights to South America, although many South American airlines connect to London via Spain. Other large airlines operating at Heathrow include bmi (formerly British Midland), Virgin Atlantic and the main national airlines of most countries.
London Gatwick Airport, 30 miles south of London in Sussex, is the second-largest airport, and also offers a wide range of international flights.
London Stansted Airport in Essex is a hub for the budget airlines Ryanair  and easyJet  who offer direct flights to a wide range of European destinations as well as to Asia, with daily flights to Kuala Lumpur with Air Asia X. It's often cheaper to fly here but bear in mind it is about 40 miles outside Central London so always factor in extra travelling time.
London Luton Airport in Bedfordshire is also a major hub for the Ryanair  and easyJet  and is also often cheaper. However, Luton is even farther out from London and will also take extra time to get to.
London City Airport is the most central airport in London, situated 7 miles east of Central London, but primarily serves business passengers to the main financial centres in Europe.
Manchester International Airport in the North of England is the UK's third-largest airport serving many European and a reasonable number of long-haul destinations. This could be a more convenient arrival airport for visitors to North Wales, the North of England and Scotland.
Outside London and Manchester, many of the regional airports offer a wide range of direct links to European and some long-haul destinations.
Liverpool John Lennon Airport, in North West England, is the UK's fastest-growing airport and is taking on more and more flights.
Leeds Bradford is a hub for Jet2 and Ryanair.
Birmingham International is the UK's second largest airport outside of London. The airport has good European services and some long haul services. The airport is served by the major European flag carriers providing global hub connections, as well as LCC's such as Ryanair and Easyjet. It is an ideal gateway to Central England and Wales.
Other smaller regional airports include Bournemouth, Bristol, East Midlands, Newcastle, Norwich, Southampton and Teesside/Durham Tees Valley.
In Scotland the major airports with links to London and abroad are:
Glasgow has two airports: Glasgow International (for most major airlines) and Glasgow Prestwick (for RyanAir and some low-cost flights)
Cardiff International is the only international airport in Wales; it is a major hub of bmibaby
In Northern Ireland, Belfast International Airport and Belfast City Airport both serve the province's capital. City of Derry Airport serves the northwest with a limited number of international and domestic flights.