‘Turn back, I’ve forgotten my passport!’ — how many times have you heard this warning cry when you’re about to set off on holiday? This kind of panic is obviously not ideal to start a relaxing break, especially if you’re looking forward to an idyllic cruise trip, but it may be that you can avoid it altogether and still get to sail away into the sunset. We’ve put together a few cruise destinations that you can easily access from the UK without encountering the issue of your passport at all…
St Peter Port, Guernsey
This Channel Island lies just 14 miles off the French coast and boasts one of Europe’s prettiest ports: St Peter Port. With its cobbled streets, marina and boutiques, this cruise destination allows you to get away from it all and still not be too far from home. Although there are no passport controls between the UK and the Channel Islands, there are customs checks, however, so bring some form of ID with you, just in case.
We’ve all heard of the White Cliffs of Dover, of course. Aside from this natural gift to the UK’s second busiest cruise port, there are historical attractions such as Dover Castle and the Battle of Britain memorial. If food’s more your thing, you can enjoy some grub in one of the many oyster bars jostling for tourists’ custom.
What should you do if you want to visit Athens but don’t have a passport? Visit an alternative one, of course — and there’s none finer than Edinburgh, the ‘Athens of the North’. Cruise to this fine city and you can blend in with the crowds on Princes Street, take in (or ascend) Arthur Seat hill, walk the Royal Mile with its narrow alleyways leading to all sorts of hidden courts and historical attractions, or just grab a pint in one of the centuries-old alehouses in the Old Town.
Cruise into the capital of the Scottish Highlands and you’ll see Inverness Castle, standing proud and keeping a watchful eye over the River Ness. The earlier, 11th century version of this sandstone masterpiece is believed to be where Duncan met his grisly end in Shakespeare’s ‘Macbeth’. Highland tours will take you to key Highland beauty spots like Loch Ness or the Isle of Skye if you’re so inclined.
The Shetland Islands
Ever fancied seeing a puffin almost on your doorstep? The Shetland Islands are the closest you’ll come to it, but if you want to catch these cuties then you should head out there between mid-April and mid-August. The Shetlands are a hotbed for wildlife fans, with their acres of unspoilt landscape home to shaggy Shetland ponies, otters and seals as well.
Freedom and exploration are two of the great joys of travel. They’re also something that even the authorities avoid restrictions on within reason, allowing lucky citizens to cruise around the UK with one less weight on their minds. That said, it’s advisable to take your passport when travelling between countries since controls between land, air and sea borders can vary.
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