Are you serious? There are five countries that border the United Kingdom/Queendom and we have never heard of them? What are they? How can we get there? Do we need visas or passports? I decided to head on a journey round 5 unrecognised nations within the British Isles, whackpack them and write about them!
OK so the fact is that within England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, there are some mini breakaway states that are not deemed part of the area around them. I love going to off the wall places like this, and on top of my tours to Karakalpakstan and Uzupis, the UK has some funky iditoic nations to tour. Here are my top 5.
Getting Around: Buy a Used Car and Personalise It!
For a really wacky idea, you could head to a website like Carspring and buy a used car. They have such a cool range of cars in the UK. You can buy one just for this wacky trip, personalise it with a sign like “Wacky Nations Tour 2016” and change the colours. Then, get sorted with food and drink in the back of your car, and start things off in Portsmouth. From here, you can somehow travel to 5 countries that border the UK and here they are!
1.LAGOAN ISLES, borders England (at Portsmouth)
The Lagoan Isles have their own currency, flag and border. It is basically three small islands situated in Baffin’s Pond in Portsmouth. As they were unclaimed by the English, Louis Robert Harold Stephens claimed them as the Lagoan Isles.
I became the first backpacker to write about the Lagoan Isles. It’s easy enough to get to from the Fratton area of Portsmouth, and the border crossing is on a pond.
When I visited – October 2015
2.EMPIRE OF AUSTENASIA, borders Carshalton, Surrey, England
In the early months of 2015, I got in touch with Jonathan Austen, the Emperor of Austenasia to arrange a visit. I was the first tourist to visit the nation and the first travel writer to cover it. The border crossing from England was smooth and as well as backpacking the key sights in Wrythe, the capital, I also headed to the protected nation of Orly. Austenasia is a cool country to visit, it also attracted attention in Japan, thanks to my friend and real life blogger, Justin Egli for featuring this country on his Ikimasho blog.
When I visited – March 2015
3.THE KINGDOM OF LOVELY, based in Bow and history at Eel Pie Island, London, England
The legendary Danny Wallace is the leader of the Kingdom of Lovely. A micronation which had its own 8 part TV series back in 2005. My best mate Millwall Neil and I backpacked the key sights, all can be done within London, here are my top sights in Lovely.
You can tour Bow, Leicester Square and the famous Eel Pie Island.
When I visited – April 2016
4.EMPIRE OF ADAMMIA, borders Yorkshire, England
Similarly to Austenasia, Adammia is an Empire, has a leader, borders England and I was also their first ever tourist when I crossed the border in 2015. The thing about Adammia is that its location is top secret, so I got a world exclusive through Adam, the Emperor. I got to tour the capital city, buy their postage stamps, witness a rocket launch and try the local wine. Yes, Adammia has a winery and it borders England! On my visit, I got made a Sir – so in Adammia I am Sir Jonny Blair! I toured some crazy sights in Adammia!
When I visited – October 2015
5.PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF PODJISTAN, borders Northern Ireland
When I got in touch with Simon, the leader of Podjistan in 2015, I had no idea that he used to work with my sister! Podjistan borders Northern Ireland and is situated in sparse countryside. The country has a great leader and a cool history, you can get your passport stamped at the border and their flag is pretty funky looking. The only issue is, I was their first and only backpacker so it may not be open for tourists again. I toured the Four Gables as well as the People’s Palace (the capital city). This is one of the hardest countries in the world to visit. Evident by the fact that I am still the only tourist to visit!
When I visited – September 2015
As a bonus, I have also visited the Former People’s Republic of Frestonia with Abbi from Life in A Rucksack.
Here are some other Micronations that border the British Isles or are off the coast:
1.The Copeman Empire
3.The Saltee Isles
Now that I have given up backpacking, I won’t be touring these places in the foreseeable future, but who knows if things will change again.