The Great British Summer is really something to be experienced. How else can you encounter four seasons in one day? The British summer, with all its culture, traditions, and temperate weather, is a season not to be missed. If one has travelled, one can attest to the fact that there is nowhere else on planet earth, where, at just 17 degrees, you can see a bare-chested (very white) man, sunbathing in the middle of a precinct.
Bitching about the weather is a real pastime in the UK, which lends itself as the perfect excuse to start up a conversation with the locals. Simply complain about the rain, or complain about the heat, and you’ll make a new friend instantly. Below we will discuss, and gaze in awe upon, summer culture, traditional British summer food, proper British summer events and festivals, and how you can live it up, just as the locals do.
Having a barbecue in the garden is a serious summer tradition in the UK. As soon as the BBC Weather Forecast reports that the map of the British Isles is about to turn slightly orange, it’s time to get yourself to a supermarket…as quickly as possible. Why, you may ask? Because this is ‘barbecue season’ baby, and you can bet your burnt sausage there won’t be a burger or bag of coal in sight if you’re too late.
The most famous British food export, and of course the most delicious meal in the world, is proper British Fish & Chips. No trip to the seaside would be complete without a steaming hot tray of battered fish, proper potato chips, and a side of mushy peas. The skill is trying to eat them without being robbed by a seagull. I suggest a beach towel over the head, or something similar.
Coming in as the third greatest British summer food tradition, is of course, the picnic. Not only is this a wonderful opportunity to buy yourself a picnic basket, it’s also an ideal reason to lay out on a blanket on the grass and stare at the sky. Traditional ‘picnic foods’ include sandwiches, potato salad, cheese, pies and flans, followed by strawberries and cream. All swigged down with a nice bottle of Pimms or Cider, does it get anymore British?
The UK is absolutely crammed with music festivals from June to September. From Eminem to Dolly Parton, The Rolling Stones to Stevie Wonder, UK music festivals are a menagerie of genres. Imagine sleeping in a tent under the stars, dancing in the mud, eating a plethora of international cuisines from eclectic food vans, and best of all, forgetting about ordinary life for a few, short days. Unfortunately in 2020, many of the festivals have been rescheduled or postponed. Check out the link below for the scheduling of many music festivals in the UK:
When the sun shines over the fair land of Britain, the locals swarm to the many, many beer gardens, in every town and city in the UK. Beer gardens vary in comfort and quality, but all share the same, special thing, a wonderful, smug atmosphere that shouts ‘look at us, we’re sat outside!’ You will not see a bigger smile, than that of a British person in a beer garden, pint in hand, sun on face.
A summer trip to the British seaside is not only enjoyable, it’s also a bit wacky. It’s true that the UK doesn’t possess many beaches to rival those of the Caribbean, but then, the Caribbean doesn’t have arcades filled with 2-pence machines and candyfloss, so it really depends on what you’re into. Grab yourself a bucket and spade, build yourself a sand forte, then bury your kids up to their necks….followed by fish and chips of course.
Nothing screams ‘Summer’ in Britain more than the abundance of summer sporting events. Wimbledon is of course, one of the most famous. Since 1877, The Wimbledon Tennis Championships have become a British institution. Whilst buying a ticket for Wimbledon may seem about as possible as a British summer without rain, it still a wonderful afternoon watching the games on the telly, whilst scoffing strawberries and cream.
Every country in the UK is football crazy, so if you’re blessed enough to be in Britain for The World Cup, or The European Championships, pop on your England/Wales/Scotland/Northern Ireland shirt, and head to the nearest pub with a big-screen TV. Guaranteed fun will be had by all. Shouting, jumping, singing, cuddling, all with a cold pint of larger or cider. Soak up the atmosphere and cross your fingers that the home team gets a victory.
There are many other entertaining sports during summer, including; Royal Ascot, The British Golf Open and International Test Cricket at Lord’s. Whatever your sporting hobby, you can fill your boots in the summertime in Britain.
Ready to Explore a British Summer?
Britain in the summer is a wonderful place, boasting unique days, plenty of food and summer booze, and of course, music, sport and happy faces. Have a Great British Summer! The only thing left to do, is to navigate the locals…
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