The UK’s Top Staycation Destinations based on Average Hours of Sunshine
Even though we’re in the middle of summer, here in good old Blighty, it doesn’t always feel like it. The summer months don’t guarantee us sunshine, in fact, we’re more likely to be guaranteed rain! While you should always be wary of over-exposure to the sun, making sure to apply plenty of SPF, available from any good health and beauty retailer, and to wear a hat or seek shade every once in a while, it’s undeniable that the sun’s rays are good for our health too. Not only do we get vitamin D from the sun, which is important for keeping a healthy immune system, but the sunshine also gives us a boost of serotonin which is a big mood-booster and helps to reduce depression. We’re certainly feeling the lack of sunshine this year due to the pandemic putting a stopper on our holiday plans. If the only option is to staycation home this summer, we know that you’ll want to make the most of that, so using data from the Met Office on the UK’s average climate, we’ve created a map of the regions of the UK with the largest amount of hours of sunshine annually.
The averages were calculated using data from Met Office weather stations in various locations across each region. Here are a few of our top hotspot locations for sunny staycations in the UK:
Isle of Wight - 1923 hours
You might actually think you’ve made it abroad when visiting the Isle of Wight! With an average of 37 hours of sunshine per week, it far outstrips the UK average of 29 hours per week. The towns of Shanklin and Sandown are often recommended for their sunny south island position, but Ventnor is famed for having its own microclimate in the sheltered position of the “Undercliff” region of the island.
Bognor Regis - 1920.8 hours
Following closely behind the neighbouring Isle of Wight, with just a couple fewer sunshine hours per year, is Bognor Regis. This classic seaside resort is a favourite for London dwellers, perfectly located for a weekend break on the south coast just a couple of hours away. Once a small fishing village, it now welcomes thousands of visitors every year and has been especially popular as a staycation destination recently thanks to the wide open promenades, pebble beaches and green spaces.
Eastbourne - 1887.9 hours
Another traditional seaside resort on the south coast, Eastbourne has titled itself the UK’s sunniest place. Not only does it boast an outstanding number of sunshine hours annually, but it also has a vibrant entertainment scene, picturesque views across the South Downs, and iconic attractions such as the Victorian Pier and art-deco inspired bandstand.
Teignmouth - 1747.1 hours
Teignmouth is often regarded as part of “England’s Riviera”, and really anywhere along this stunning coastline would make for a perfect British staycation. Not only can you soak up the sunshine on sandy beaches, but you can also explore rocky coves and picturesque villages, as well as enjoying some of the UK’s best seafood.
Cardiff - 1673 hours
While the west coast of Wales struggles at bottom of the list for sunshine hours and is often renowned for its rainy days, South Glamorgan and the city of Cardiff are outliers with nearly 500 more hours of sunshine per year. The proximity to the English border makes them ideal for staycationers nationwide and the seaside location means there’s always plenty to see and do.
Norfolk Broads - 1610.5 hours
While the Norfolk Broads doesn’t boast quite so many sunshine hours as its southern coast counterparts, it still outdoes the rest of the UK by over 100 hours, which might make a significant difference to your staycation. Exploring the marshlands by canal certainly makes for a holiday like no other, giving you a unique view of a stunning landscape with more waterways than Venice!
Haworth - 1573.6 hours
Though the north is generally regarded as bleak and dreary weather-wise compared to the south, West Yorkshire comes up remarkably high in sunshine hours, still above the UK annual average of 1493 hours, so deserves a shout out in our list! For staycationers looking for a more northerly destination that might still get you a few sunshine hours to explore the gorgeous Yorkshire Dales, we’d recommend Haworth, a quaint Yorkshire village once home to the Bronte sisters.
Check out our top 10 staycation destinations video to get more ideas for holidays in the UK:
So whether you’ve only got a night available to slot in a trip close to home, a long weekend or a full week long break to head more than a few hours away from home in the UK, there are plenty of opportunities to get that vitamin D in, no matter where you’re located.