Staycation offers chance to visit UK’s ‘darkest’ locations – including deep mine

Due to the ongoing pandemic, many of us are booking staycations instead of jetting off this year.

And with UK trips set to boom, The Sexton has partnered with Travel Matters to create an eccentric twist on the classic British holiday.

Starting at £1,830 for two tickets, the seven-day tour will see holidaymakers take in three of the darkest locations across the UK, providing the perfect conditions for moonlit tourism and night-time inspired cocktails.

So where will holidaymakers be heading?

Toasting the beginning of this extraordinary adventure with nocturnal-themed cocktails at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, holidaymakers will be whisked to Kielder Forest in Northumberland.

It is the darkest location in the UK where those brave enough to embrace the night-time and all the mystical things that happen at night, will be treated to a spectacle beyond their wildest imaginations.

Guests will start off spending three nights at Langley Castle, a luxurious 13th century property.

Here, activities include a visit to Kielder Observatory located in Europe’s second largest dark sky protected reserve.

Revellers will be treated to a unique stargazing experience-cum-cocktail masterclass led by an experienced team of astronomers who will provide a bespoke guided tour to the Universe while leading guests on a unique cocktail experience inspired by the stars.

From Northumberland, travellers will then head to Wales, and the Snowdonia Dark Sky Reserve where holidaymakers can enjoy some of the UK’s least polluted skies.

Covering over 18% of Wales’s land area, travellers will spend the next two nights in the charming village of Bews-y-Coed – the gateway to Snowdonia. Staying in one of the Royal Oak Hotel’s highly coveted four-poster bedrooms, the town provides the ideal base to discover the mountains and coasts of beautiful North Wales, providing amazing night-time views of this stunning skyscape.

As night turns to day, those looking to retreat from the Sun will be treated to a guided tour of Llechwedd Deep Mine.

Sending guests 500 feet down into the belly of Llechwedd’s imposing mountain, the experience will transport you back 160 years to experience the sights and sounds of complete darkness.

From North to West Wales, holidaymakers will be chauffeured to their final destination in the Brecon Beacons.

Nestled at the foot of Sugar Loaf Mountain, at the very heart of the Black Mountain Range, is Gliffaes Country House – a fitting accommodation for the final evening of the trip.

Those booking the trip will spend their final evening doing a spot of bat watching and searching for the elusive Greater Horseshoe Bat, one of the rarest breeds in the UK, before returning to the Royal Observatory in Greenwich from whence this greatest of adventures hath begun.

For those unable to take this once-in-a-lifetime trip, never fear, The Sexton has created ‘Moon Safari’, a cocktail inspired by astrology of the night skies.

The cocktail includes The Sexton Single Malt, amaro and orange ginger ale.

This concoction is a perfect accompaniment to stargazing, whether it be from one of the UK’s dark sports or from the confines of your back garden… Looking up at the sky has never tasted so good!

The Sexton will also make a limited number of cocktail kits inspired by Destination: Darkness available to win on social media.

The kit, including all the ingredients to create two ‘Moon Safari’ cocktails will be available to followers of The Sexton’s Instagram account.

To win, followers simply tag who they would take with them for this once-in-a-lifetime trip.

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