They say that today we experience the world through a computer screen. But if you grew up in the eighties or nineties, chances are you’ve built your mental picture of the world from pixels for most of your life! And if you never went anywhere without your early Sega or Gameboy, there will be a special place in your heart for the iconic 16-bit graphics that their video games utilized.
So get ready for a double-hit of nostalgia, because the folks at Holiday Cottages have created a new series of 16-bit images of some of the most memorable destinations in Britain!
White Cliffs of Dover (Kent, England)
The first thing you see as you approach the port of Dover from mainland Europe is the iconic chalk coast of eastern Kent. The geological formation has a multi-million year history, but the modern Brit’s cultural connection to the cliffs can be traced back to World War 2.
In the 1940s, dogfights between British and German planes were common in the area as ally forces sought to defend the island from bombing. Songwriters Walter Kent and Nat Burton penned the unforgettable ‘(There’ll Be Bluebirds Over) The White Cliffs of Dover’ to keep morale up – it was most famously sung and recorded by Vera Lynn, and has become a symbol of British resilience.
Today, you’re more likely to see a passenger ferry than a Stuka dive-bomber – as this gif attests!
Castlefield Canals with Beetham Tower (Manchester, England)
Castlefield is a living testament to the hard work and resilience of Manchester and its workers. As the hub of the Bridgewater Canal during the grim days of the industrial revolution, it was the beating heart of northern trade.
Over the past decades, the area has become more associated with regeneration. Bars, restaurants and fancy apartments overlook the barges and locks of the waterways, while Beetham Tower – the highest living space in Europe – stands brash and broad-shouldered just a stone’s throw away.
Thankfully, as a heritage site the canals and cobbles are protected, so you will still get a glimpse of the past as you sip real ale on the Manchester Riviera!
Borough Market (London, England)
Borough’s market has a thousand-year history, and has witnessed it all from the turmoil of Viking invasions to an art deco refurbishment 100 years ago.
Nested among historic buildings and rising skyscrapers, the market remains both a bustling hub of authentic London life and an exotic destination for visitors.
Blackpool Central Pier (Blackpool, England)
Blackpool is famous for being the holiday destination of the working classes in Britain, and today the common touch of donkey rides, shows, and museum experiences rub up against the glamour of casinos and the famous lights.
From August to November, the million-bulb Illuminations reflect and shimmer in the ocean front – if not quite one of the wonders of the world, it’s certainly one of the wonders of Britain!
Riding the West Highland Line over the Glenfinnan Viaduct (Glenfinnan, Scotland)
J.K. Rowling immortalized the Glenfinnan Viaduct in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and now it is further celebrated in this 16-bit gif!
Scotland’s West Coast boasts unrivalled colors, light, and natural vistas, and there’s no better way to soak it up than from the warmth of a train carriage with a cup of tea and a scone.
Glastonbury Festival at night (Somerset, England)
The UK’s most famous festival opened for the first time the day after Jimi Hendrix died – way back in 1970. The area’s history stretches back even further, to the birth of Arthurial legends and mystical medieval druidry!
But today it’s a very modern affair, with the biggest bands playing to thousands amidst tremendous light shows and epic sound systems. It’s no wonder this 16-bit postcard immediately stirs the spirit!
Angel of the North (Gateshead, England)
Somebody sets eyes on Antony Gormley’s 200-ton steel sculpture every second of the day – that’s 33 million each year. Over its twenty-year history, that’s a lot of warm welcomes to Tyne and Wear!
In 2018, the famous angel will celebrate its birthday with a series of local events, so you can get your heritage on while enjoying the peaceful green landscape that surrounds it.
Walk up Snowdon (Snowdonia National Park, Wales)
And let’s not forget Wales! Snowden is the busiest mountain in the UK, and its diverse paths offer something for everyone in the family – from a casual-yet-awe-inspiring walk to proper scaling of its peaks.
And if you’re tired of walking, there are other ways to travel the area. Whether you take the fast route down with a zip wire or a tranquil boat trip over the lagoon, the fresh air will leave you pleasantly exhausted by the end of the day – for, as this 16-bit scene demonstrates, even if you stand still in Snowdonia, something around you is always moving.
Ready to switch off your monitor and hit the wilds of Britain?