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When people are travelling to the UK, they usually go straight to London. It’s the capital city and a lot of flights land in London airports so it makes sense. It’s an amazing city with so much to see and do and a lot of the most famous tourist attractions. These include Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament as well as many museums. If you head outside of central London, you’ll find so many different areas. Here you’ll get a unique experience that is nothing like the tourist-focused centre of the city. You could visit London ten times over and still find something new every time, but wouldn’t you like to see another part of the country? There are some great cities to visit outside London.
Cities to Visit Outside London
The UK is often overshadowed by London and most people don’t even consider visiting any of the other cities. That’s a real shame because London is only one of many amazing cities in the UK and a lot of people may argue that London is the least exciting. Each city has its own unique culture and heritage. So you’ll find a completely different travel experience compared to visiting London. Whether you’re visiting the UK for the first time or going back for a return visit. You should consider visiting some of these great cities outside London.
Birmingham is the second largest city in the UK after London and it’s got a lot of great stuff going on. This formerly industrial city has been through a lot of regeneration in the last few decades so it’s got great transport links, a wide range of hotels from the height of luxury down to the basic and affordable, and there are some big shopping centres as well if you’re interested in a bit of retail therapy. But one of the best things about Birmingham is the canals. They used to be used for moving goods around but these days, they’re lined with lots of great bars and restaurants. If you head there during the summer, you can enjoy the view as you sit outside by the water.
One of the best reasons to head to Birmingham is its location. It’s right in the centre of the country and the transport links are great, so if you’re planning a longer trip and you want to see a lot of different places, it’s the ideal place to start. You can take some great coach day trips from Birmingham to all sorts of different places. You could visit the famous beach resort at Blackpool, head to a nearby zoo or visit Bristol, a great up and coming city in the UK. If you’re staying in Birmingham, you’ll have good access to lots of different areas of the country.
When most people are planning a beach getaway, they probably don’t think of the UK. Instead, they’re more likely to go somewhere like the Algarve or the Caribbean but the UK has plenty of its own beaches as well. Brighton is one of the most popular beaches in the UK and it gets a lot of local tourism every year. It’s a lot different to the fast-paced city lifestyle that you’ll get in London so if you want a more relaxing trip, Brighton is the place to find it. However, it’s not that difficult to get from Brighton to London so you can still visit the capital for a day if you want to. An easy choice of cities to visit outside London.
While there, you can relax on the beach during the day and then enjoy the vibrant nightlife in the evenings. The city has a fairly young population so there are plenty of great bars and restaurants to visit. It’s also well known for having the biggest pride festival in the country so if you’re there during the summer, make sure to experience that.
If you just go to London and the surrounding areas, you’re only experiencing southern England, and you’re not getting a chance to see the north which can be quite different. People often say that the north has a much friendlier and more relaxed atmosphere than the south. Whether that’s true or not, it’s still worth visiting because there are some great cities up there. Manchester is a beautifully diverse and exciting city with a very strong national identity. The people of Manchester are proud to call it their home and when you go to visit you will understand why. Perhaps the most famous thing about Manchester, especially for those living outside of the UK, is the football teams there. If you’re interested in sports, you can visit the grounds of rival teams, Manchester City and Manchester United.
If you aren’t bothered about sports, don’t worry, there is plenty more going on. Manchester has long been a hotbed for creativity. With a lot of the country’s most popular musicians coming from the city. Especially those that were part of the ‘Madchester’ movement in the 1980s. The city still has a buzzing music scene with loads of great venues hosting live music events. You’ll also find plenty of great bars and restaurants, especially if you’re into vegan and vegetarian food because it’s very popular in the city.
Head further north and you can visit Scotland. Edinburgh is one of the most popular cities in Scotland, best known for the Fringe comedy festival that is held their every year. A lot of the most popular comedians got their big break at the Fringe. So, if you’re in Scotland while it’s on, you should definitely go for a few days at least. However, it’s still worth visiting the city any time of year because. It’s a beautiful, historical and has a great welcoming atmosphere.
The city is an incredible mix of historical buildings sitting atop cliffs and hills, and modern bars and restaurants. It’s one of those cities that is filled with little side streets where you’ll find hidden gems. It’s all so beautiful that you can spend days just exploring the place.
If you go to the UK be sure to venture outside of London. You’re missing out on the rich and diverse culture if you don’t. Next time you plan a trip, make sure to visit some of these other great cities as well. Which city will you choose to visit first?