Have you been doing holidays all wrong for years?  

Author and journalist Liz Schaffer joins the Country Life Podcast to talk about how 'Slow Travel' can help you make the most of your time off — and what she discovered while touring 22 of Britain's most beautiful off-the-track places.

We lead busy lives these days — which might be all well and good for getting things done, but is the last thing you want on a holiday.

That’s the central idea behind a new book by the travel writer Liz Schaffer, Slow Travel Britain, in which Liz travelled to 22 off-the-track parts of Britain to really take them in.

From walking Hadrian’s Wall to exploring the unspoilt corners of the Pembrokeshire coast, Liz made a point of taking her time, talking to the people she met, and avoiding — at all costs — falling in to the trap of box-ticking sights and places. Her epic trip around the country really reinforced that.

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‘It was about finding what made that area unique,’ said Liz as she joined us on the Country Life Podcast, speaking to our own Travel Editor, Rosie Paterson, to discuss the places she saw, the people she met, and what she learned about travel — and indeed herself — on the way.

‘It didn’t have to mean that the area was the best place in the entire world to go for this thing, or that you couldn’t experience foraging or art or mountains somewhere else. It was just about seeing the area for what it offered and really connecting with that element.’

One example she gives is her time in Cornwall.

‘For me to travel slowly, it meant going to Cornwall and seeking out artists and talking to them about the artistic history of Cornwall and what it meant for them to be a practitioner today and how art changes how you see a landscape or moves through a landscape,’ Liz explains ‘ Having those conversations, learning to see an area through that lens, it really focuses your experience. You can’t help but slowing down and connecting…

‘Sometimes moving slowly, be that on foot or by train, it does automatically get you out of the everyday pace and it does automatically make you think about where you are, what it means to move your body as you’re moving. Because when it’s not bombarding you, you do notice more.’

Liz’s book is published by Hoxton — you can order a copy here.

Episode credits

  • Host: Rosie Paterson
  • Guest: Liz Schaffer
  • Producer and Editor: Toby Keel
  • Music: JuliusH via Pixabay
  • Special thanks: Adam Wilbourn
  • On holiday this week but will be back next time: James Fisher