Over the past few years, I have been to the UK several times. From the stunning nature and beautiful cities, to the fun pubs and friendly people, the UK is one of my favorite places to travel.
Each part of the UK has its own character and charm. The country is steeped in history, but also very modern. Think of the Highlands of Scotland or the bustle of London. I think that every type of traveler can find their dream destination in the UK.
Although there is still a lot of the UK left for me to explore, I did want to share my five favorite places to visit in the UK so far. I love each of these and can’t wait to see more. In my opinion, these are the best places to visit in the UK:
Of course, no list of places to visit in the UK would be complete without the crowning glory: London. I visited London for the first time last December and immediatley feel in love with the capitol of England.
I always thought that London would be expensive, busy and overrated. But it turned out to be charming, fun and so cool! And surprisingly budget friendly. I spent a few days hopping the free museums, gorging myself on street food and just strolling through the pretty neighborhoods. I can’t wait to go back to London to explore it even more.
My all time favorite city in the UK, and possibly Europe, is Edinburgh. The capitol of Scotland is just so beautiful and magical. I’ve been twice and I would move there in a heartbeat.
Edinburgh, with its historic city center, is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. It feels old, yet timeless. There is an air of magic and mystery to Edinburgh, that inspired many writers and artists throughout the ages. Not in the least, J.K. Rowling. There are references to Harry Potter all through the city and I recommend visiting them all.
Edinburgh is also a great solo female destination and a good destination for budget backpackers. I’ve always felt very safe here and the Scots are very nice people. As lovely as Edinburgh is in spring and summer, nothing compares to the festive atmosphere in December.
I only spent one day in Manchester, but I immediately liked it. The city reminded me of Brooklyn, NY. Brownstones, multicultural and a really cool vibe. There’s a cool mix of historic buildings and modern architecture and the crowd is young and hip. Lots of live music and street food too, so what more could you want?
I think Manchester is definitely an underrated destination in the UK and I can’t wait to go again and see more of what this city has to offer.
I’ll admit that I really only knew Newcastle from the MTV show “Geordie Shore”. Not the most positive endorsement 😉 But then I went to visit my mom who was working on a research project at the University of Newcastle and I was pleasantly surprised.
Sure, the city is the UK number one spot for stag and hen parties (bachelor/bachelorette) and a real party place. We saw drunk women stumble around on their heels at 7 pm. But at least it’s never boring.
Manchester also has a few great museums, beautiful old architecture and parks. It’s also quite close to the coast and is surrounded by a beautiful countryside, which makes for great day trips. That’s why I think it’s one of the most fun cities to visit in the UK.
Belfast is undoubtedly one of the most interesting and suprising cities I’ve ever been. I went there on a spontaneous detour while I was traveling through Ireland and I’m so glad I did!
As it turns out Belfast is a beautiful city with some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet. They might be hard to understand (what an accent!), but they’ll still talk your ear off. Even if they don’t always get along with each other, you’ll make instant friends.
Between the continuing political tensions and as the birthplace of the Titanic, Belfast has a rich and interesting history. I highly recommend going on a Political Walking Tour and following the Titanic trail to learn more. And be sure to indulge in all the delicious foods and the fun pub life.
These are my favorite cities in the UK, but what are yours? Any gems that I should add to my list for when I next visit? Let me know in the comments.
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