Armagh voted cheapest place for UK ‘staycation’

County Armagh has been voted the cheapest place, and fourth safest location, for a UK staycation.

By Helen McGurk
Thursday, 23rd July 2020, 11:49 am
Slieve Gullion Forest Park
Slieve Gullion Forest Park

As more people plan on taking a staycation than ever before, due to the coronavirus pandemic, consumer spending experts at money.co.uk have created the 2020 Safecation Report, which identifies the best locations in the UK for a socially distanced holiday.

The report takes a list of the UK locations that are home to the largest public parks (according to Ordnance Survey) and compares them against the UK’s most-visited staycations destinations to reveal the safest staycations in the whole of the UK.

Results are based on the following criteria: space (km2), contactless payment availability, free activities, dog friendliness, number of beaches within a 50km radius, number of caravan parks/camping sites within a 50km radius, crime rate for April 2020, visitors per year to the county, park entry fee and car parking charges.

The report cited Slieve Gullion Forest Park as a “must-visit attraction while holidaying in Armagh” as it can accommodate up to more than 1.7 million visitors, while all maintaining a one metre distance. Or if maintaining a two metre distance the attraction can accommodate almost 440,000 visitors.

It said: “This gives guests the freedom to enjoy country walks across the park’s 6.12km² of outdoor space,’’ adding, “the remote location offers plenty for those looking for a crowd-free option.”

Meanwhile, County Antrim came in 14th position in the study.

The destination has fewer visitors per year to the county than Armagh and has a significantly bigger park (Glenariff Forest Park) but scored lower against the other criteria within the report.

It also scored lower than Armagh on budget-friendly options and dog-friendliness.