Experience Britain's heritage cities
From Edinburgh’s medieval marvels to the Georgian beauty of Bath, Britain’s cities are full of chocked with cultural treasures and UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Whether you catch live gig at Cardiff Castle or climb the rigging of London’s Cutty Sark ship, here’s how to experience a new side of Britain’s heritage hotspots.
Thanks to a vibrant arts scene and eclectic live shows, Glasgow is rightly a UNESCO City of Music. Experience thrilling productions from Scottish Opera and moving concerts from one of Briton’s foremost orchestras, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Put a beat in your step and join a walking tour of its ‘Music Mile’or follow its folk-themed night out at the Trad Trail. For live gigs, why not check out the place that helped launch the careers of anyone from Radiohead to Oasis, King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut.
Stroll elegant Georgian terraces that could be straight from Jane Austen. Dip a toe in the world’s first thermal Roman baths. There are whole ways to explore Bath, a place so historically stunning the entire city is designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From paddle-boarding river trips to soaring over the atmospheric honey-hued buildings by hot air balloon through to taking a filming locations tour for Bridgerton, there’s plenty of ways to experience this atmospheric city.
From musical legends to maritime landmarks, Liverpool is bursting with heritage. And beyond its great museums, galleries, and the famous Cavern Club where The Beatles first gigged, the city is breathing new life into its history: watch comedy in a bombed-out church, go ghost hunting with Shiverpool, or kayak around its famous docks.
Home to no fewer that three UNESCO World Herigae Sites, Canterbury really is packed with culture.
Not only does it house Briton’s oldest cathedral, Canterbury Cathedral, but also the ruins of St Augustine’s Abbey, and St Martin’s Church – which dates back to the sixth century. And you don’t have to see it in the same way every time. Why not discover the city’s canoe tours, explore its gin distilleries and take in the tranquility of its sculpture trails and nature reserves.
Walk through history in Edinburgh. With its medieval ‘Old Town’ and Georgian ‘New Town’, Scotland’s capital holds World Heritage Status. Discover the home of no fewer than eleven international festivals. Explore the city through walking tours to cycling trips, shiver your way round ghost hunts or combine booze with books in this UNESCO City of Literature’s Edinburgh Literary Pub Tour.
Meet the world’s first UNESCO City of Film and City of Culture 2025, Bradford. It’s a TV and cinema powerhouse – the backdrop for everything from The Witcher and The Crown, to Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life. See for yourself on a themed walking tour, and check out its National Science and Media Museum too.
Welcome to Britain’s tiniest city. For centuries, Christian pilgrims have flocked to this Pembrokeshire spot, believed to be the resting place of St David, Wales’s patron saint. Explore its fine cathedral and the crumbling ruins of the Bishop’s Palace before discovering the coast’s wild side. Think sea kayaking, cliff hiking, island hopping and more.
A town, not a city, but Stratford-Upon-Avon’s history is truly A-list. Visit Shakespeare’s birthplace, take in its ancient half-timbered houses up-close, and watch world-class shows at its many theatres. The Avon River runs through its heart, a haven for kayaking and paddle-boarding tours, or you could raise a glass to the bard himself on a gin-tasting cruise featuring gin made by the towns very own, Shakespeare Distillery.
With two millennia of history to explore, Cardiff Castle has had many guises from a being a Roman fortress to a Victorian mansion, and now its latest - a cultural hotspot. Hosting star-studded concerts, DJ events and theatre shows, the castle also transforms into a Christmas wonderland, hosting ice skating and festive film screenings from its 15th-century crypt.
Britain’s top city-based UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Britain’s top countryside-based UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Featured things to do
Want to see York at its most glorious? In spring, its parks and riverside are filled with pink cherry blossom – for the iconic view, head to Dean’s Park beside York Minster cathedral.Learn more about York
Adventure ahoy! Part of London’s UNESCO-listed Greenwich, the Cutty Sark ship is always buzzing in summer: look out for live music, comedy, and the chance to climb its historic rigging.Learn more about Maritime Greenwich
‘Tis the season to be nosy. In September, Oxford Open Doors lets you explore inside the city’s hidden heritage sites and off-limits landmarks – including parts of its famous university.Learn more about Oxford Open Doors
Durham Cathedral sparkles with Christmas magic. Cosy up with mulled wine and mince pies, or catch carol concerts and festive events at this UNESCO-listed heritage treasure.Learn more about Durham Cathedral