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Top 10 Best Cities to Visit in the UK: Don’t Miss Out!

The United Kingdom is famous for its fascinating history and vibrant culture. With countless cities to explore, it can be tough to pick where to go. But worry not, I’ve got you covered.

Here are some of the best cities to visit in the UK. Trust me, I’ve been to (almost) all of them with my boyfriend who’s from the UK. We’ve had some incredible adventures there.

London is undeniably amazing, but let’s not forget about all the other great cities in the UK! You would be missing out if you only visited London while you were in Great Britain. Now, let’s get into it.

Top 10 Best Cities to Visit in the UK

1. London

House of Parliament in London
House of Parliament and Big Ben in London, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

No list of top UK cities would be complete without mentioning London. As the largest city and the capital city of England, London is a bustling metropolis with endless attractions to explore.

From historical landmarks like Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London, and the Tower Bridge to modern art galleries like Tate Modern, there’s something for everyone in this city.

I absolutely love London, I visit at least once a year and there’s always something going on.

Not to forget all the cool Harry Potter things in London, from original filming locations and magical souvenir shops to Harry Potter-themed afternoon tea venues.

Plus, London is one of the best cities in all of Europe for vegans. There are so many amazing vegan restaurants in London.

2. Oxford

View of Oxford England, you can see one round-shaped building next to a rectangular building with a green courtyard
The best viewpoint in Oxford: University Church of St Mary the Virgin

Oxford is a charming university town with stunning architecture and rich history which can easily be visited from London on a day trip.

Take a stroll through the city center to see iconic landmarks like the Bodleian Library and Radcliffe Camera, or visit one of the many colleges that make up the famous Oxford University.

I’ve been to Oxford multiple times and every time the city’s beauty amazes me. It feels like walking through a different time.

And if you’re a fan of Harry Potter, you’re in luck. Oxford is home to multiple Harry Potter filming locations.

If you’re more interested in classical literature, the hometown of William Shakespeare, Stratford-upon-Avon, is just a one-hour car ride away.

3. Cambridge

Aerial view of the historic King's College in Cambridge, showcasing the intricate Gothic architecture of the chapel with its towering spires, surrounded by well-manicured lawns and a procession of people along the path.
One of the main attractions in Cambridge are the colleges

Another university town worth visiting is Cambridge, located just an hour north of London.

Similar to Oxford, the city of Cambridge boasts stunning architecture and a rich history, with impressive colleges and beautiful green spaces like the famous Cambridge University Botanic Garden.

Make sure to go on a punting tour along the River Cam for great views of the city’s landmarks and charming houses.

I have to admit, if you only have time to visit one of those two famous university cities, I personally like Oxford more than Cambridge.

4. Brighton

Beachgoers relaxing on the pebbled shores of Brighton Beach with the iconic Brighton Palace Pier in the background, featuring amusement rides and British flags fluttering in the breeze.
Brighton is a great place to spend some time on the beach

Brighton is a popular seaside destination known for its vibrant nightlife, unique shops, vegan restaurants, and laid-back atmosphere.

The city also has a rich history, with attractions like the Royal Pavilion and Brighton Palace Pier.

But what makes Brighton truly special is its quirky and diverse culture, making it one of the most LGBTQ+ friendly cities in the UK.

I’ll always remember my first trip to Brighton, it was the first time in my life that I played arcade games. They are not really a thing in Austria, where I’m from.

5. Bath

Visitors exploring the Roman Baths in Bath, England, with the ancient stone architecture and greenish bathwater captured from an elevated perspective.
Already the Romans knew about the hot springs in Bath

The city of Bath is another must-visit city in the UK. The city is famous for its stunning Georgian architecture and its Roman baths.

Visit the ancient baths and learn about the city’s history, or simply wander through the picturesque streets and admire the beautiful buildings.

You can soak in the highlights of Bath in just one day. So, it’s perfect for a day trip from London or Bristol.

6. Bristol

A wooden old-style looking ship on a river in front of colourful houses and trees on the shoreline
Scenic view of a residential area in Bristol

Bristol is a vibrant and creative city with a thriving street art scene, as well as plenty of museums, galleries, and music venues.

From the iconic Clifton Suspension Bridge to the colorful houses of Bristol’s famous harbor, there’s always something interesting to see in this city.

I absolutely loved visiting Bristol and exploring its unique neighborhoods. There are so many hidden gems in Bristol just waiting to be explored, like the sole remaining video rental place in the UK.

When you’re in Bristol, don’t miss the chance to take a street art tour; it’s an eye-opening experience that showcases the city as a canvas for world-renowned artists, including Banksy, who is from Bristol.

There are also many amazing vegan restaurants in Bristol. I really liked the East Village Vegan Café, it’s the perfect place for tea and some pastries after exploring the natural beauty of the surroundings.

7. Liverpool

People sitting at tables in front of a half destroyed church
Amazing place to listen to some live music to

Liverpool is a port city with a rich maritime history and a strong musical heritage, being the birthplace of The Beatles.

You can walk down the famous Mathew Street in Liverpool, where the Cavern Club is located. The club where The Beatles first performed.

But Liverpool has more to offer than an amazing music scene, with attractions like the Royal Albert Dock and the World Museum, just one of the world-class museums in Liverpool you can visit for free.

One of my favorite things to do in Liverpool is just to wander through the streets and look for amazing street art. There are so many hidden gems in Liverpool if you just keep your eyes open and have a look around.

8. York

Scenic view of the York Minster Cathedral towering over the medieval city of York, England, with lush greenery and an ancient city wall in the foreground.
I love the medieval architecture of York

York is a charming city in Northeast England with a long history dating back to the Roman times.

Visit the magnificent York Minster Cathedral, and get lost in the quaint streets of The Shambles, one of the best-preserved medieval shopping streets in Europe.

One of the best things to do in York is to walk on the city walls. It’s such a cool experience and it gives you an amazing view of the surrounding area.

9. Edinburgh

Sunset view from Calton Hill overlooking Edinburgh, with the Dugald Stewart Monument in the foreground and the city's historic skyline stretching towards the sea, under a dramatic sky. Edinburgh is one of the best cities to visit in the UK
View of the castle from Calton Hill in Edinburgh

So far, it’s basically been a best cities in England list. Now, let’s cross the borders to Scotland. The best place to visit in Scotland is Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland.

Edinburgh is a city full of character and charm, with its medieval Old Town and elegant Georgian New Town. One of the main attractions is the iconic Edinburgh Castle.

Make sure to also add a hike to Arthur’s Seat to your Edinburgh itinerary for the best panoramic views of the city.

And if you’re a Harry Potter fan like me, you’ll love visiting The Elephant House Cafe, where J.K. Rowling wrote some of the early books in the series. It’s one of the great Harry Potter places to visit in the UK.

Did you know Loch Ness is in Scotland, further north than Edinburgh? If you have a week in Scotland, you should add both places to your itinerary.

10. Cardiff

Cardiff is the capital of Wales. It’s a vibrant city full of culture, history, and amazing food. Unfortunately, it’s the only city on this list I haven’t visited yet, but it’s already on my list for later this year.

Take a stroll through the city center and visit attractions like Cardiff Castle or the National Museum Cardiff.

You can also explore the bustling Cardiff Bay area with its waterfront restaurants and boat tours.

Other United Kingdom Cities

Apart from the cities mentioned above, there are many more amazing places to visit in the UK. From picturesque coastal towns like St Ives and Whitby to bigger cities like Manchester and Birmingham.

You can even hop on a boat and explore the capital of Northern Ireland, Belfast, home to the famous Titanic Museum.

Don’t forget to also explore the stunning countryside, with its quaint villages, rolling hills, and beautiful lakes. The Lake District and the Cotswolds are just some of the many breathtaking areas to discover in the UK.

Ultimately, I wanted to give you a list of the top 10 places to visit in the UK, so I had to make some tough decisions and leave some great cities off my list.

Final Thoughts: Best Cities in the United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is full of amazing cities to visit, each with its own unique charm and character. From the historic streets of Oxford and Cambridge to the vibrant culture of Brighton and Bristol, there is always something interesting to see and do in these cities.

And don’t forget about the other gems like Bath, Liverpool, York, Edinburgh, and Cardiff. With their rich history, stunning architecture, and vibrant communities, these cities are definitely worth adding to your travel bucket list.

So whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or just looking for a fun city break, the UK has something for everyone.

Read more about London:

Read more about Bristol:

More about Liverpool:

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Promotional image for UK travel highlighting 'Best Cities to Visit United Kingdom Top 10,' with an upper view of Edinburgh's cityscape including the Dugald Stewart Monument and a lower view of London's Tower Bridge over the Thames at sunset.
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