There’s a lot more to Britain than what you see on TV. Beyond the stereotypes and rumours, it’s a vibrant and eclectic place that incorporates many different cultures. But let’s face it, when you come to the UK, you want to do some quintessentially British things. Even residents of these fair isles should make sure they don’t miss out on some of our great traditions in their lifetime. Some of our very British activities are specific to certain locations, but there are many you can participate in up and down the country. Next time you’re on a British holiday or just bored at home, try out one of these typically British things to do.
Try Fish and Chips
Eating fish and chips has to be at the top of many people’s things to do when they first set foot in the UK. Although the ideal is tucking into a paper-wrapped serving by the seaside, you can get delicious fish anywhere in the country. It’s one of the joys of being on an island. Unfortunately, many people find themselves disappointed when they try fish and chips for the first time. But that’s because there’s a knack to finding the right place. Choose a random establishment, and you’ll end up with soggy batter, too-greasy chips and mushy peas from a can. Pick your chip shop carefully, or go to a restaurant for a more refined experience.
Have Afternoon Tea
It’s not that we’re obsessed with food, but afternoon tea has to be another of our great traditions. Although there’s nothing more British than a scone, afternoon tea is an excellent example of how we’re influenced by other cultures. You could find French pastries, Italian cakes, and American pies in the huge range of menus available to try across the country. Not forgetting great British cakes like the Victoria sponge, of course, and classic finger sandwiches. It’s best to use The Luxe Travel afternoon tea guide or something similar to help you navigate your way through all the different choices. You’ll find a tearoom anywhere you go, but not all afternoon teas are equal. Some come with champagne, some run on a specific theme, some are formal, and others are casual.
Celebrate Burns Night
If you want a bit of Scottish flavour in your time in Britain, there can be no event more Scottish than Burns Night. You need to be in the country on January 25th, but you certainly don’t have to be in Scotland to find a celebration you can join. This event, celebrating the Scottish poet Robert Burns, happens every year. It generally takes place with haggis, whiskey, some traditional Scottish music and plenty of fun.
Go to a Welsh Rugby Match
For a Welsh experience, you can’t beat a rugby match. It’s best if Wales are playing, but anyone will do in a pinch. Either go to a stadium and watch it all live or hole up in a pub and watch with all the other revellers. Don’t worry if you don’t understand what’s going on – just celebrate when everyone else does.
There are hundreds of other British must-dos during your lifetime, from seeing a Shakespeare play to climbing Snowdon. But to get a snapshot of Britain, no matter where you are, these activities are a must.