Many Brits look to the continent for city breaks even though some of the world’s most fascinating cities are right on their doorstep. While the COVID-19 outbreak can make jetting off to foreign lands difficult, why not take the opportunity to tick Britain’s must-sees off your list?
Cardiff city breaks
Most city breaks can be experienced over two or three days; however you may want to book a longer stay to get the most out of Cardiff. The Welsh capital has something for everyone thanks to its importance in British history and the 21st century. You can find the National Assembly for Wales, for example, across the road from the Wales Millennium Centre, a massive entertainment venue.
Keep walking and you will soon arrive at 11th century museums such as Cardiff Castle alongside science and discovery centres like Techniquest.
Cardiff Bay quickly dispels the notion of wild Welsh waters only fit for trawlers. The largest waterfront development in Europe is filled with jet-skis, boat tours and boat hires that let you admire famous waterfront sights such as the Welsh National Opera and Norwegian Church in all their glory. You could consider lodging at St Davids Hotel for quick access to the bay and everything it has to offer. Cardiff’s fusion of the old with the new makes it an ideal destination for families with multiple people to please.
Brighton city breaks
King George IV founded the Royal Pavilion in Brighton as his party palace, and the city has upheld its eccentric reputation to this day. Brighton is nicknamed London-by-the-sea due to the number of Londoners attracted to the entertainment on offer, including festivals like Brighton Pride and Brighton Festival throughout the year. While many street parties have been put on hold due to the coronavirus outbreak, local businesses and residents have been celebrating in a number of creative ways.
The city also has an unmissable nightlife with world-famous acts headlining venues such as the Brighton Centre and Brighton Dome, where ABBA famously won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974. Some line-ups are currently only being streamed online due to COVID-19 restrictions, however others have resumed physical showings with social distancing measures in place.
You don’t need to be a partygoer to enjoy Brighton, however. The Royal Pavilion and Brighton Museum & Art Gallery give great insight into the Victorian landmark’s long history as a highly fashionable seaside resort.
Staying at The Mercure Brighton Seafront hotel will give you the full effect of the seaside paradise Brighton is often portrayed as.
Edinburgh city breaks
Visiting Edinburgh can feel like walking through a time machine given how well-preserved its medieval Old Town and Georgian New Town are.
These gothic and neoclassical parts of the city give a breathtaking glimpse of the capital’s history and together are classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We recommend staying at the Crowne Plaza Edinburgh to experience the best of both areas.
Edinburgh is full of beautiful historical sites such as Edinburgh Castle, the Royal Mile and Holyrood Palace, however its feats in the modern world are just as attractive to tourists.
The annual Edinburgh Festival Fringe, for example, is the world’s largest arts festival. It took place across 25 days and saw over 55,000 performances in 2018, and its digital iteration in 2020 is set to host even more events.
Edinburgh’s hilly surroundings also offer lots of walking opportunities and guided tours around scenic vistas. While you’re exploring, don’t forget to drop into a restaurant and try Scotland’s renowned salmon, scotch and, if you’re feeling brave, haggis.
For more information and ideas about holidaying in the UK during the COVID-19 pandemic, take a look at our UK Holidays page.