During my travels I was lucky enough to have some friends to stay with and show me around the UK. I stayed with friends in Glasgow, Birmingham, Cardiff, and London (working at a summer camp gave me some awesome connections to people all over the world!).
An experience I will never forget is driving through the Scottish countryside next to two great friends. One of my friends lives on a sheep farm, so we were able to drive on through the picturesque scenery. This is one of those amazing adventures that I never would have been able to do if I had not had connections in Scotland. This is part of the reason why I like to get to know locals, so I can really experience the places I visit.
TRAVEL TIP: If you ever have the opportunity to stay with someone you know in a foreign place, do it! You will not regret it! Even if the person opening their house to you is a friend of a friend, I challenge you to seize the opportunity for cheap accommodation and a great experience! Chances are if they are generous enough to open their home to you, they just as interested in you and your culture as you are interested in them and their culture. Another way to get into this is Couch Surfing, a site that sets travelers up with hosts. There is a rating system to avoid getting into any sketching situations. I have yet to use the site, but I have only heard good things about it. Hopefully, I will be giving it a try this coming year.