Where to buy the best views in Britain

Edinburgh castle Scotland

Few people looking for a house can afford the luxury of picking a real beauty spot. At best, once you've considered budget, location, amenities, the property's condition, and everything else, a good view from the bedroom window is a lucky bonus. But for those determined to have stunning vistas as their number one priority when looking for property, here's a guide to some of the most highly-regarded views in Britain. And if you can't buy a house in one of these locations, you can still enjoy holidays there. Let's take a trip round the country looking at the very best of Britain…

Starting in the south-west, the tidal island of St. Michael's Mount in Penwith, Cornwall is a picture of serenity, with views looking back to Penzance. Truly the gateway to Britain, the crenellated castle and surrounding land has been fought over since the 12th century, and with your first look at its charming cobbled streets and medieval walls you'll see why.

Oxford, with its “dreaming spires” is home to some of the most impressive man-made views in the country. Head up the 124 steps of the 13th Century University Church of St Mary the Virgin, to the top of the beautiful baroque tower, and you'll have set yourself a vista benchmark that would be hard to beat. Manicured lawns, impressive buildings and an all-round sense of human achievement makes Oxford a treat for the eyes.

Anyone who has experienced the intoxicating wordsmithery of Dylan Thomas will have some idea of the splendour of Rhossili Bay, but even he can't quite capture the magic of actually being there. The Gower Peninsula near Swansea, South Wales is a visual feast of windswept cliffs and rolling dunes.

For a breathtaking cityscape, take an evening's trip up the 47-storey Beetham Tower in Manchester to Cloud 23 – the city's first sky bar. Feeling the vibrant city beneath you, in all its dazzling nocturnal glory, is quite a thrill. Shimmering away as you perch in the sky is Deansgate Locks, the Victorian Town Hall with its 280 foot bell tower and Urbis, the dynamic exhibition centre.

Raw nature, human history – Hadrian's Wall in Northumberland is a landmark of epic beauty in every regard. Snaking 73 miles between the east and west coast, this is where Roman civilisation tamed the rugged wilds of Pictish Britain. More of an ancient trade checkpoint than a defensive fort, it's an impressive example of mankind's determination to control nature.

The Isle of Skye off the west coast of Scotland is a reminder that Britain's geography is as dramatic as anywhere. Travel by train and you will experience one of the great scenic rail journeys in the world. Jagged mountains, sandy beaches at Morar and the churning Atlantic Ocean make this forbidding landscape a spine-tingling destination.

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