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North England Road Trip: the Best Around Manchester


550 km


6 - 9

Recom. Days

Culture, Adventure

Trip type

Hannah is a frequent traveller and road trip enthusiast from the UK that works as a freelance journalist at Indie Campers.
Hannah Hilton

Freelance travel writer and road trip enthusiast based in York, UK. When Hannah isn’t climbing mountains or hopping overseas on an adventure, you can find her at home with her crazy puppy Red.

North England Road Trip

North England Road Trip map itinerary

Google Maps

This North England road trip begins and ends in the city of London and continues across the country to soak up the very best of northern England’s countryside, towns, and cities.

From Manchester, this road trip heads north to Lake Windermere in the mountainous Lake District, east through the Pennines to the historic city of Durham, and then south along the coast to the seaside town of Whitby.

From here, wind back west to Manchester with the option to explore the Howardian Hills and call in at York on the way.

Lake Windermere during Sunrise
Pick-up in
London depot

Craft Breweries and Museums in Manchester

The first stop on this North England road trip is Manchester! Home to the world’s longest running soap - Coronation Street, a vibrant live music scene, and a number of famous museums, England’s second biggest city has a lot to offer.

What’s more, Manchester’s bar scene is an eclectic mix of craft beer breweries and secret gin bars!

To brush up on England’s history head to the Manchester Museum where you’ll find 4,500,000 relics gathered from across the country and around the world! If you’re more of a culture vulture, check out the Manchester Art Gallery, or if you’re a football fan pay a visit to Old Trafford, the famous ground of Manchester United.

Make sure you visit some of the cities coolest bars before you leave too, including Dusk Til Pawn and The Fitzgerald.




Recom. Days

Main route





You can find Indie Campers RV rentals in more than 40 different cities and destinations across Europe.


Science and Industry Museum

Science museum, historical exhibits

Heaton park

Green oasis, urban park, farm animals

Eat at

Flight Club Manchester


pizza resto, lounge bar, quirky

Blue Nile Cafe


Home-cooked Ethiopian food in cosy setting

RV icon


Metrolink Radcliffe Park and Ride


Catch a metro to the centre

Stay at

Giants Seat Scout Camp


Outer-city, remote camping, woodland


Water Sports on Windermere

This North England road trip continues north to the glorious Lake Windermere, the largest lake in England. On the east coast of the lake, tucked into Bowness Bay, sits the small town of Bowness-on Windermere; a destination popular with outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, and adventure seekers alike.

If you’re itching for a water-based adventure or a road trip through the mountains, this is the place to be.

From Bowness-on-Windermere, you can sail across Lake Windermere on a traditional steamboat, brush up on Beatrix Potter at the World of Beatrix Potter Museum, or take to the mountains on an adventure hike to Orrest Head or Brant Fell.

Other popular peaks nearby include Langdale Pikes, Pike of Blisco, and the Old Man of Coniston; all of which require a full day to tackle.




Recom. Days

Main route





You can find Indie Campers RV rentals in more than 40 different cities and destinations across Europe.


Crags Adventure

Scrambling, abseiling, and rock-climbing adventures

Windermere lake Cruises

Rowboats, self-drive, lake excursions

Eat at

The Brookside


Hearty British dishes, muddy boots welcomed

The Crafty Baa


Laid back, cheese and meat platters, craft beers

RV icon


Broad Street Car Park


Multi-tariff parking, 5-min walk from centre

Stay at

Braithwaite Fold


Lakeside campsite, base for exploring town


Medieval History in Durham

The next stop on your North England road trip is the historic city of Durham. Both quaint and charming, Durham is packed with character, and the entire city centre is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Get ready to explore the town on foot and marvel at the famous Romanesque Durham Cathedral, 13th-century buildings, and stunning botanical gardens. While Manchester is hip and urban, Durham is quintessentially British.

Add a little variety to your road trip activities with a visit to Durham Castle, a 14th-century stronghold that today houses part of Durham University’s campus. From here head to the Oriental Museum to view archaeological finds from the Far East or, if you prefer to brush up on local history, add the Durham Heritage Centre and Museum to your to-do list.

The Living Museum of the North is also a must as this outdoor museum showcases Durham in the Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian eras. 




Recom. Days

Main route





You can find Indie Campers RV rentals in more than 40 different cities and destinations across Europe.


High Force Waterfall

Stroll through Durham Dales to impressive waterfall

Durham University Botanical Garden

10 hectares of green, glasshouses and outdoor art

Durham Cathedral

Romansque architecture worth contemplating

Eat at

Court Inn


Pub roast and ale near cathedral

Fat Hippo


Juicy burgers in low-lit hipster joint

RV icon




Stay at

Durham Grange Caravan and Motorhome Club Site


Small shop, spacious pitches, great facilities


Fish & Chips in Whitby

The seaside town of Whitby has a rich maritime history and has been a popular holiday spot with Brits for centuries. It was here that Bram Stoker based his novel Dracula and Captain James Cook carried out his fishing apprenticeship.

History aside, this beach town is a fantastic spot for coastal walks, sea excursions, and fish and chips! Before you depart Whitby end your North England road trip, consider calling at the market town of Helmsley or the Viking city of York.

Head straight down to Whitby Beach to dip your toes in the sea or simply take a walk on the sands (nearby Sandsend Beach is also glorious). From here head over to Whitby Harbour, home to bobbing fishing boats and a string of pubs, cafes, and fish & Chip shops.

Walk off your fish and chips by climbing the 199 steps from Church Lane up to St Mary’s Church; you’ll be rewarded with fantastic sea views at the top too.




Recom. Days

Main route





You can find Indie Campers RV rentals in more than 40 different cities and destinations across Europe.


Whitby Abbey

Iconic landmark and views over town

Falling Foss Tea Garden

Outdoor cafe in green garden near waterfall

Captain Cook Memorial Museum

The historical figure and maritime history

Eat at

The Starr Inn The Harbour


Seasonal fish and meat, fine dining

Magpie Café


Best fish & chips, takeout and outdoor dining

RV icon


Marina Back Car Park


Central location, busy

Stay at

Broadings Farm Caravan Site Whitby


Sheep farm, mile from centre, 70 pichtes

Drop-off in
London depot

419 km

from Whitby



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