There are more than 43,000 public charge connectors in the UK where you can recharge your electric car – far more than the number of fuel stations – and some of them are in breath-taking locations. You can plug in and enjoy the views of beautiful beaches, National Parks, historic landmarks, and the shores of lakes, lochs and waterways.
Lexus has followed up the launch of its first all-electric vehicle, the UX 300e compact luxury SUV, with a list of 11 charging points-with-a-view across the UK. Apps are available to pinpoint the exact locations and their connection types and Lexus recommends always checking ahead to ensure the chargers are operational before you visit.
Waddesdon Manor, Buckinghamshire, England
Built in the style of a French Renaissance château, with fairy tale turrets, lavish interiors, and sculpture-laden gardens, Waddesdon Manor brings a dash of flamboyance to Buckingshamshire and the Chiltern Hills. There are four car parking spaces with fast (and free) chargers you can use while you refuel with afternoon tea or a picnic hamper from the Manor Restaurant.
Coniston Water, Lake District, Cumbria, England
On the shore of Coniston Water, the Coniston Boating Centre offers paddle-boarding, kayaking, canoeing and steamboat trips, and provides four EV charging points for visitors. All profits from the chargers are used to support conservation projects throughout the National Park. Drivers can enjoy a coffee from the Bluebird Café and admire the view.
Bamburgh Castle, Bamburgh, Northumberland, England
Just a few steps from the mighty Bamburgh Castle, you’ll find two 7kW chargers (in the Links Road car park) and no shortage of things to do while re-charging the car. The 1,400-year-old castle contains an armoury of historical weapons, a mediaeval Great Hall, an archaeology museum, and Spitfire memorabilia. The beach below the castle is perfect for long rambles.
Minack Theatre, Porthcurno, Cornwall, England
Chiselled from the cliffs of south-west Cornwall, the Minack Theatre is an amazing place to experience outdoor concerts, films and plays, with the Atlantic Ocean as the backdrop and beautiful gardens all around. While you’re watching a show, the car park’s 7kW charging point will give your EV a boost too, leaving you ready to explore the Lizard Peninsula, Penzance, and Land’s End (where there’s also a rapid charger at the Visitor Centre).
Snowdonia National Park, Wales
There are multiple EV charging points throughout the peaks and forests of Snowdonia National Park, including the pretty village of Betws-y-Coed (at Moel Siabod Café), the car park at the Talyllyn Steam Railway, and the visitor centre at Coed y Brenin – famed for its mountain-bike trails. For peaceful woodland walks in the foothills of Snowdon, head to the National Trust’s 200-acre Craflwyn Estate, which has a 2.3 kW – 3 kW charger in its car park.
Rhossili Bay, Gower Peninsula, Wales
With its wide, golden sands and sheltered waters, Rhossili Bay is one of the most glorious coastlines in Wales. Though it’s only 50 minutes from the M4, it’s unspoilt, featuring little more than a couple of cafés. There’s a 2.3 kW – 3 kW charger in the National Trust car park, just a short walk from the beach which is ideal for picnics and paddling in summer, or windswept strolls in the cooler months.
Cairngorms National Park, Scotland
There are more than 50 EV points across Scotland’s Cairngorms National Park, many with spectacular mountain backdrops. After plugging in at Tomintoul village (in the public car park), you can explore the moorlands and waterways of Glenlivet Crown Estate, whose entrance is right next door. The rapid chargers at Braemar (in Balnellan Road car park) are just a 13-minute walk away from the 17th-century Braemar Castle and its gorgeous glen views. There are also three public charging spots at the Highland resort of Aviemore.
Loch Long, Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, Scotland
While charging an EV battery at Arrochar Car Park, you can gaze over the water and woodlands of Loch Long, on the edge of the Argyll Forest Park. It’s the most picturesque rapid charging station in the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, which offers 40 charging points at a further 12 locations.
Oxford Island Nature Reserve, County Armagh, Northern Ireland
Oxford Island Nature Reserve is a fantastic spot for family-friendly walks and picnics, overlooking the water of tranquil Lough Neagh. Its meadows and woodlands are perfect for spotting butterflies, otters, rabbits, sparrowhawks and egrets. The Lough Neagh Discovery Centre has toilet facilities, a café, play areas, a gift shop, and two fast chargers in the car park.
Ballycastle Beach, County Antrim, Northern Ireland
Stretching between Belfast and Derry-Londonderry, the 132-mile Causeway Coast Route makes an ideal road trip, with beautiful beaches, historic landmarks, and plenty of places to explore. The Giant’s Causeway rock formations are a highlight, as is Ballycastle Beach: a sandy bay renowned for its surfing and water sports. Nearby, you’ll find two fast chargers at the DRD Carpark, which are perfectly placed at the route’s midpoint.