Top UK destinations for an out-of-this-world staycation including best places to spot a UFO

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Staycations are not just about bucket and spade trips to the seaside or camping in the countryside.

Some of the quirkiest places to visit are situated in towns and cities – with some closely-guarded secrets providing an endless array of tourist attractions to explore – there’s something for everyone.

From novel nature and quirky culture, to mind-blowing science and historic relics, Leonardo Hotels has analysed almost 4,000 entries from Atlas Obscura, TripAdvisor and UK UFO Sightings to find the country’s top alternative tourism destinations.

London has been revealed as the capital of alternative tourism, with a staggering 1,165 off-the-beaten track activities. From award-winning food markets to breath-taking architecture, the city has something for everyone.

Edinburgh takes the second spot, with 231 alternative activities, and it’s no surprise given the city’s rich history and stunning surroundings. Visitors have lots to choose from, from the Royal Botanic Gardens or check out the taxidermy remains of Dolly the Sheep at the National Museum of Scotland.

In third place is Manchester, with 139 alternative things to do. Quirky highlights include a monument to the soft drink Vimto – on the very spot that it was invented – and a pub that claims to have the smallest bar counter in Europe.

For those looking for something out of this world, there have been more than 3,000 UFO sightings reported in the UK during the last 10 years with supernatural tourism gaining popularity.

The South East of England has reported the largest number of extra-terrestrial sightings, with a total of 470. This is closely followed by the North West with 465 sightings, and Scotland with 376 sightings.

Here’s how the rest of the UK compares:

  1. South East England – 470 sightings
  2. North West – 465 sightings
  3. Scotland – 376 sightings
  4. West Midlands – 336 sightings
  5. East of England – 312 sightings
  6. South West – 261 sightings
  7. East Midlands – 255 sightings
  8. Yorkshire and the Humber – 196 sightings
  9. London – 182 sightings
  10. North East – 164 sightings
  11. Wales – 64 sightings
  12. Northern Ireland – 2 sightings



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