Best UK cities to visit and enjoy alone
You don’t have to fly to far-flung destinations to enjoy the excitement of solo travel. In fact, for first-time solo travellers, trying out a trip by yourself in your home country, where you speak the language and where travel is quick and easy, may be the best way to dip your toe into the water.
There are many fantastic UK cities with thrilling cultural attractions and natural sites to explore. Here is our list of some of the best UK cities for solo travellers.
The best UK cities to travel to alone
With an impressive castle, extensive cityscape panoramas from Arthur’s Seat and excellent museums, Edinburgh is a great city to visit solo any time of the year. But, if you’re looking for something special, visit Edinburgh in August where comedy, theatre, dance, art and music artists descend on the city for the annual Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Lonely Planet named the Fringe this year’s top experience in the UK, and nothing makes you feel more a part of a community than shared laughter.
There are hundreds of participating venues, as well as street entertainment, so book ahead for affordable hotel accommodation and to secure a seat to see spectacular performances from world-renowned artists and comedians.
For a relaxing break away from the stresses of daily life, take a solo trip to this picturesque, historic city to enjoy its impressive 18th-century architecture and fantastic shopping opportunities.
Constructed around 70-75AD, the Roman Baths are well worth exploring. Visit them to find out more about how the Romans used the geothermally heated mineral water from the Mendip Hills to create a bathing pool for socialising.
Next, head to Thermae Bath Spa, which combines a historic spa with a contemporary building with an ice chamber, steam rooms, an infrared room and an open-air thermal pool on the roof.
From high-street brands in the SouthGate shopping centre to quaint antique stores and clothing boutiques in arcades such as The Corridor, Bath also offers the opportunity for a spot of retail therapy once you’re feeling truly relaxed.
With friendly Irish hospitality, a lively art scene and atmospheric pubs, Dublin is a great destination for solo travellers looking to make friends over a pint of Guinness and a good old-fashioned sing-song. There are 772 pubs in Dublin, and some of the liveliest can be found down the famed cobbled street Temple Bar near City Hall. Settle into The Old Storehouse or The Temple Bar to see live bands belting out traditional folk music.
Scattered between the pubs, bars and music and theatre venues are a fantastic array of high-street shops, vintage boutiques, record shops and retro furniture outlets.
With fantastic transport links above and below ground, getting around the English capital is easy, especially with apps such as City Mapper to help you.
There are plenty of things to do in London solo, cheif among them being a wander through the city's many fantastic museums and galleries. World-class attractions like the British Musuem, the National Gallery, the Natural History Museum, Tate Modern and the Victoria and Albert Museum are all free to enter, too. You could also book a ticket (or get a last-minute seat) to a see a West End show, or watch a film at an independent cinema.
If you’re in the area for an extended period of time and looking for opportunities to meet new people, sign up for one of the many unique fitness or dance classes that take place in the city. From learning the dance routines featured in your favourite pop videos to mastering the art of voguing or even starting your day with a juice-fuelled morning rave, there’s something for everyone.
Picturesque settings, a wealth of independent B&Bs and plentiful coastal adventures are just waiting to be enjoyed throughout Cornwall. Stay in its quaint city, Truro to admire the cathedral, enjoy authentic Cornish ice cream and eat traditional pasties from the independent bakeries. Truro’s location means it’s a great base from which to explore the abundance the stunning coastline. Visit peaceful harbour towns, admire Land’s End and gaze in awe at the rugged cliffs at Lizard Point.
There are fantastic guided adventure excursions you can join. The Cornish coast is a great location for kayaking and paddleboarding, and is also the UK's premier surfing hotspot. Beginners can take surfing lessons on Newquay’s Towan Beach, while the pros head to sandy Fistral Beach to shoot tubes. Once you’re ready, hire boards from the seafront and venture to some of the many surfing hotspots across the coast, such as Holywell Bay, Polzeath Beach and Porthmeor Beach in St Ives.
If you want to experience some of the best cities in the UK for solo travel, take a look at our solo traveller deals to find the right break for you.