Looking for culture, activities, attractions, great food or want to shop til you drop? Our local guides are here to help.
From the best theatre shows in the world, to incredible shopping, unbeatable museums and art galleries, London has it all. Explore medieval history from the Tower of London, spot the Queen at Buckingham Palace, visit Hyde Park and ride the London Eye… all this, and we’ve not even scratched the surface!
From the atmospheric old town, to the elegant Georgian new town, Edinburgh is waiting to be explored. Discover Edinburgh Castle, party at the Hogmanay celebrations, and explore the many listed buildings. And with more Michelin-starred restaurants than any city outside London, Scotland’s capital is a foodie paradise.
The unofficial capital of the north and one of the most exciting cities in the UK, Manchester is bursting with activities and attractions. It’s home to some of Britain’s biggest musical legends, famous landmarks (Old Trafford, or The Etihad), a cool arts and culture scene and world-famous sports.
Brimming with the energy you find in university towns, Leeds deserves its reputation as the ‘Knightsbridge of the North’. Whether it's music, theatre or a host of sporting attractions, if you think it's grim up North, stay at one of our Leeds hotels and you’ll discover it’s anything but.
Perched on the edge of the River Tyne, Newcastle has a proud industrial heritage, cutting edge contemporary art, superb shopping and legendary nightlife. The city is packed full of attractions, bustling markets and great places to eat, you’ll always find cultural diversity in Newcastle.
The northern city of York has a big story to tell. A medieval marvel, modern shopping hub and a treasure trove of pubs serving proper Yorkshire grub. From fascinating museums and archaeological wonders to shopping all tastes and hunting for ghosts - finding things to see won’t be a problem.
Preston exploded in popularity during the Industrial Revolution, becoming a Victorian powerhouse centred around textiles. Factor in its football team and bustling entertainment, nightlife and eating out options, and you’ll never be left wondering what to do in Preston.
East Midlands’ largest city has hit the headlines thanks to Leicester City’s enthralling underdog story and the discovery and reburial of King Richard III at Leicester Cathedral. There’s plenty to like about the city that brought us the Attenborough brothers and Walkers crisps.
A beguiling mix of the old and new, Chester continues to grow on you long after you visit. With 2,000 years of history, the city’s Roman walls are the best preserved in the UK. And thanks to new developments, the city has some of the best attractions in the north west.
Home to the UK’s only polar bears, Roman walls, medieval castles and a lively food and nightlife scene, you won’t be left wondering what to do in Doncaster. Sports fans can enjoy Doncaster Racecourse and Doncaster Rovers Belles, one of the UK’s most successful female football teams.
There must be something in the water - how else could one city produce a constant stream of musical and artistic talent? Then there’s Bristol’s illustrious maritime and ecological legacy, the Clifton Suspension Bridge and the many places to indulge in a craft ale, or cider, or two.
The market town of Bedford dates back to Medieval times and winds its way around the Great Ouse river. You’ll also find Victorian-era shopping arcades, collections of watercolours, a range of festivals and annual events, plus some impressive live music and theatre spaces.
Solihull has one of the best food scenes in the region with a number of great restaurants where you’ll have a meal to remember. Our guide delves into all of the exciting activities and attractions, including the excellent Touchwood shopping centre and the National Motorcycle Museum.
Blending history with a modern day sensibility, Gloucester acts as a gateway to the river Severn and the stunning Cotswolds. It has an amazing cultural heritage from the centuries-old pubs to fine-dining restaurants. That history is balanced with the modern touch of the Gloucester Quays.
Once defined by its Roman heritage, the river-front Theatre and Art Gallery has given the city a cultural focus, while the Newport Velodrome and Riverfront Arts Centre offers sport and entertaiment. With lots of Newports across the world, we think this one is the best.
Milton Keynes guide
There’s a lot to love about Britain’s most successful new town. Superb places to eat and go out at night, plus plenty of green spaces means it’s perfect for exploring. It has state of the art facilities, including the Xscape arena and visitor attraction Bletchley Park is just up the road.
For a small city with a big heritage, Exeter provides a host of attractions ensuring you’ll never be left wondering what to do. Cue an alluring foodie scene, scenic outdoor activities and a variety of stage and screen entertainment with plenty of options for when the sun goes down.
You’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere with as much history as Oxford. Home to the oldest museum in the world, the oldest English-language university and castles, you could spend days discovering the city’s heritage. Plus there's cool cafés, fine-dining restaurantsand markets.
Colchester is the oldest recorded town in Britain with more than 2,000 years of history. There are landmarks and attractions from every era, the most popular being the magnificent Colchester Castle. It’s got thriving theatres, as well as some top-class restaurants and cafés.
Sit on sandy beaches, explore exquisite countryside and revel in the wonders of the Jurassic Coast. Poole is brimming with history and has become a bustling destination with great bars, restaurants, cafés, shops, museums and a fantastic quayside area that’s ripe for exploring.
Maybe best known for its three-day music festival, there’s another side to Reading worth exploring that includes some amazing live music venues and an incredible eight-sided theatre. It's one of the largest towns in the UK more bars, pubs and clubs than you could shake a cocktail stick at.
The historic market town of Swindon is a perfect blend of history and modernity. With grand country parks, theatres, art galleries and several outstanding museums covering everything from the region’s rich railway heritage to the rise of computers, you won’t be left wondering what to do.
Bath is one of the most picturesque cities in the country with incredible examples of Georgian architecture – like the Royal Crescent and The Circus. And there are places like the gloriously gothic Bath Abbey, and Roman Baths – meaning you’ll never be left wondering what to do.
Cheltenham is home to the best festivals, which attract everyone from literature lovers to horse-racing fanatics. Sudeley Castle provides one of the best days out in England. Cheltenham also boasts a fantastic food scene with dishes concocted from the finest Cotswold produce.
Huddled at the edge of the Lake District and within touching distance of the Scottish border, in Carlisle you’ll find the distinguished charm of a city close to some of the country’s most marked history. When it comes to what to do in Carlisle, you won’t be disappointed.
Home to the steepest shopping street you’ll ever drag yourself up and the country’s first ever Christmas market. We delve into its famous tourist attractions – the cathedral, castle and Steep Hill – but to give you a bit of local flavour, we’ll include tips on the restaurants and pubs.
A sporting powerhouse, a cultural beacon and home to a notorious, albeit mythical do-gooder in green tights, Nottingham is truly one of our favourite cities. Drink a fine ale in one of the sandstone caverns in the oldest pub in Britain or dine at some truly inventive restaurants.
The home of one of the oldest universities in the world, this iconic city boasts stunning historic buildings and a vibrant cultural scene, meaning you’re never left wondering what to do. Plus, with a wide range of high-class restaurants on offer, you won't be short of places to eat either.
Hailed as one of the UK’s first modern tourist resorts, Weymouth has a regal past as the once-summer residence of King George III. Since then, holidaymakers have been attracted by the mild climate, shallow waters and Weymouth Beach’s long arc of golden sands that has since become the number one beach in the UK.
Eastbourne has pretty much everything you’d want from a coastal town, and then some. The town is littered with historic buildings, including a stunning Napoleonic fort and the truly iconic Beachy Head lighthouse, while the Grand Parade that handsomely separates the beach from the town is full of prime Victorian-era architecture.
Ipswich has historically been a prosperous trading port with settlements dating back to Roman times. Today, you’ll find that the historic waterfront of industrial docks has become a hub of activity, with restaurants, bars, cafés and art spaces lining the marina, with attractive Tudor buildings across the town and a beautiful collection of artwork at the Wolsey Art Gallery.
Dundee is a hub of culture, art, theatre and history. Discover dangerous voyages to Antarctica, tour some truly impressive historical buildings and feast at a host of delicious restaurants guaranteed to feed your senses and with stunning views out over the Firth of Tay.
Thanks to its rich maritime history, stunning waterfront and globally important harbour, Plymouth has every right to call itself Britain’s Ocean City. Much of the city was destroyed during the Plymouth Blitz of World War II, so it now offers a unique blend of historic buildings and modern developments
Home to our most northern hotels, Inverness is the gateway to the stunning Scottish Highlands, a truly mystical and magical area. From whisky distilleries galore to the fabled Loch Ness monster, Inverness is the largest city in the north and also, according to a recent survey, the happiest!
Situated on the south coast, Brighton is a major UK city with a unique blend of culture and heritage. Our local guide will take you through the best places to eat and drink, as well as outlining the most popular entertainment venues, cultural landmarks, attractions, shopping destinations and activities, so you’ll never be left wondering what to do in Brighton.
A historic coastal city that’s given the world some incredible authors including Charles Dickens, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Rudyard Kipling, Portsmouth is a fascinating blend of history and culture, of museums and modern-day entertainment. The cultural and event scene is dominated by the New Theatre Royal and the Guildhall.
As the city with a church for every Sunday of the year and a pub for every day, Norwich boasts bags of history but blends it with some of the best nightlife in East Anglia. From the Middle Ages through to the Industrial Revolution, Norwich was the second largest city in the country behind the capital and it’s home to some of the finest examples of Norman architecture in the country, paid for by the city’s booming textiles and pottery industries.
One of the UK’s major ports, this south-coast city is famed for its maritime heritage. However, when you delve deeper into Southampton’s history and culture, you will find it has much more to offer, such as medieval buildings, legendary theatres and famous sporting arenas.
Well connected to the capital yet much more than a London commuter town, the city of Chelmsford offers a bustling foodie scene, shopping hub and varied nightlife of sleek bars, live music and jam-packed theatre programmes. Nestled in the heart of the Essex countryside and along the River Can, it’s the perfect base to explore the delights of the great English outdoors.
The sandy beaches, world-class surf and laid-back attitude of Cornwall have long been attracting holiday goers from across the UK. It’s the home of the pasty, it’s the cider county, and it’s also got a vibrant food scene for you to sink your teeth into. Beyond the beauty of this beautiful stretch of coastline, and idyllic inland countryside, there’s a buzz to Cornwall that – when you know where to look – attracts visitors back time and time again.
To give you an idea of Basildon’s diversity, it’s the town that gave us the world-famous actress of ‘Carry On’ film fame Joan Sims, the sexy synth rockers Depeche Mode, and the bastion of British culture that is Bob the Builder. Our local guide is just as eclectic in places, especially when it comes to places to eat, and things to do during the day
The wonderful town of Kidderminster is the birthplace of the modern carpet industry, and Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant. That goes some way to giving you an idea of how varied a town Kidderminster is. During your stay take a trip back in time aboard the steam locomotives of the Severn Valley Railway.
Our local guides to cities in Germany
Looking for attractions, entertainment, great food or shopping? Our local guides to German cities are here to help.
Munich has so much more to offer than just Oktoberfest and FC Bayern Munich. This welcoming, cosmopolitan city in Southern Germany is brimming with cultural and culinary diversity. Tourists should expect a multi-faceted city with famous landmarks and top-quality attractions.