Sunday, 31 May 2015

My Top UK Cities

The UK has many lovely cities to visit, this post is about my favourite UK cities. What cities do you enjoy visiting? 

The Roman Baths, Bath 
Copyright Ollie Taylor Shutterstock


A unicycling juggler at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Why - Edinburgh is a beautiful historic city with great shopping and sightseeing and many festivals all year round.
When to go - To the Edinburgh Fringe Festival every August to see a variety of comedians and performers.
What to see - The Dynamic Earth is a science centre for all the family, whilst a trip to Edinburgh castle is recommended if you like history - if you are visiting in August be sure to see the Edinburgh Tattoo at the castle. An attraction with a difference is The Real Mary King's Close - see how people used to live in the 'closes' underground many years ago. For an entertaining ghost tour with the odd laugh, The Cadies and Witchery Tour company is highly recommended.
Where to stay - The Apex Hotel is a mid-price hotel chain with excellent rooms centrally located and The Premier Inn and Travelodge has a number of hotels in the city. For a gothic hotel room with some class consider The Witchery suites, but beware you may see a ghost.
Where to Eat - Most of the chain restaurants are represented but if it's a special occasion consider the Number One restaurant in The Balmoral Hotel for a Michelin star experience, whilst The Witchery Restaurant has a gothic setting for that wow factor. For afternoon tea visit Harvey Nichols or The Glass House. 


Cardiff Bay

Why - Popular with students Cardiff city centre is great for shopping and nightlife. Try St Davids Centre and The Capitol for undercover shopping, and The Royal Arcades for the many independent shops. The Motorpoint arena and St David's Hall are brilliant for concerts too, whilst Clwb Ifor Bach has live bands.
When to go - Anytime but avoid the city centre when a rugby match is on if you are not a fan.
What to see - Cardiff Bay has lots of restaurants and bars, a comedy club called The Glee, The Dr Who Experience and The Millennium Centre for world class shows. At Christmas, the Winter Wonderland in front of Cardiff Museum has ice skating, a fun fair and a Ferris wheel. The Museum of Welsh Life at St Fagans is free and interesting to visit to see how Welsh used to live years ago.
Where to stay - The Marriott is recommended right in the town centre, St David's Hotel in the Bay has a touch of luxury whilst the Hilton just off Queen Street is the only 5-star hotel in Cardiff.
Where to eat - Le Bistrot Pierre and Cote Brassiere are excellent French restaurants with amazing well-priced food, Bill's is great for all the family and The Purple Poppadum is great for modern Indian cuisine with a touch of class.


Bristol Street Art

Why - Known for its artistic and musical community, Bristol is a multicultural haven.  Shopping is excellent with Cabot's Circus popular for the big chains as well as the lanes for independent shops. 

When to go - When a festival is on. Bristol has a plethora of festivals including a Shakespeare festival, the Foodies Festival, and The Bristol Harbour Festival.
What to see - 'At Bristol' is an excellent interactive science museum, then there is the SS Great Britain and Bristol Zoo as well as numerous art galleries. Watch out for a Banksy art work - they are everywhere on the walls of the city.
Where to stay - The Bristol, a Jury's Doyle hotel, has a lovely setting on the vibrant harbour quarter, the Victorian style Bristol Marriott Royal is close to the Bristol Hippodrome whilst Hotel Du Vin is highly recommended too.
Where to eat -  You will be spoilt for choice with many independent restaurants as well as chains like Brassiere Blanc and Carluccios in Cabot's Circus which come highly recommended.  Bristol also has a handful of Michelin star restaurants including Casamia and just outside Bristol The Pony and Trap gastropub.


Bath Abbey
Copyright JeniFoto Shutterstock 

Why - Bath is a gorgeous historic city with lovely Georgian architecture. Shopping is brilliant with many independent and individual shops and the restaurants are fantastic too, many fit for foodies. Take a trip on a narrow boat on the Avon and Kennett canal for a lovely way to see the area.
When to go - A great year round destination, go in the summer for a trip on a narrow boat or the end of November/ December for the Christmas market
What to see - The Roman Baths is a must do and a trip to the Therma Spa for relaxation after. Visit Bath Abbey and the Jane Austen centre if you enjoy history. The American Museum just outside the city is in a lovely countryside setting and is worth visiting.
Where to stay - At the many great independent bed and breakfasts, or the Queensbury Hotel, The Royal Crescent or The Bath Priory (with a Michelin Star restaurant) for a luxury stay.
Where to eat  Jamie's Italian is a reliable chain, Clayton's Kitchen is a lovely independent restaurant and for a luxurious afternoon tea in a historic setting try The Royal Crescent Hotel. 

For more on Bath, check out Things To Do In Bath by the Trusted Traveller. 

So what do you think of my list? I haven't included  London as it deserves a post of its own. Do you have any recommendations on what to see and do in these cities?

You can read about these places further on my blog here :-

What To See And Do In Cardiff Bay              My Edinburgh Fringe Laugh-A-Thon



  1. Look forward to your London post - that's my favourite city! I've not been to any of the ones you've mentioned here, but they are on the list!

  2. I keep promising myself a trip to Bath, have never been but would love to. Great photos x

    1. Bath is an amazing place, so much to do and see and such a historic city.

  3. I would love to go to Cardiff, think I have only ever been there once for a rugby game, would love to explore it more.

    1. I adore Cardiff, there is so much to see and do.

  4. I do love London - it is always so alive and I feel so safe even late at night. There's obv also loads to do.

  5. Bath is so beautiful I used to visit a lot as a child, I would love to go to Bristol one day and see more of it. x

    1. Bath is a very pretty city, and it had such lovely independent shops too.

  6. Cardiff is on our must visit for this summer. We have never been and the boys are Dr Who mad!

    1. You can take a Dr Who tour of Cardiff as well!

  7. Some great tips here, thank you for the suggestions!

  8. Love Bath and my home town of Cardiff. Didn't know there was a Dr Who tour of Cardiff though Mel. Will have to check that out.

    1. Oh yes Linda, it is on the Visit Cardiff website.

  9. Aw, this is a lovely post. I've actually never been to any of these places despite living in the UK literally all of my life. I do love London though! :) x

    1. I think we often overlook what is on our doorstep.


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