England is brimming with exciting tourist attractions to explore. Here’s our pick of the top sightseeing spots in England.
Several towns and districts are even part of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, and in this article, we’ll unveil several popular spots you must visit on your trip to England.
England’s capital is a must-visit. There’s a lot to explore there.
You can visit iconic sites like Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, the British Museum, Big Ben, and the London Eye. London also has vibrant neighborhoods like Covent Garden, Soho, and Camden Town.
It’s a city quite different from the rest of England, and it doesn’t quite capture the feel of other major English cities. It’s very international and intriguing due to its dynamic nature and rich heritage.
Located in Wiltshire County, Stonehenge is a mysterious prehistoric monument made up of massive standing stones. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Overall, it’s a fascinating spot if you’re keen to delve into England’s ancient history.
While there, you can explore the Stonehenge site. Walking around it is a unique experience! Stonehenge consists of prehistoric megaliths arranged in a circle. You can stroll around the monument and admire these huge standing stones.
Additionally, you can explore Stonehenge’s visitor center. Close to the site, there’s a visitor center where you can learn more about Stonehenge’s history and context. You’ll find interactive exhibitions that are quite engaging.
Bristol is a lively city in South West England. When in Bristol, you can visit the Clifton Suspension Bridge, a city icon.
You can walk on the bridge, enjoy views of the Avon Gorge from up high, and visit the visitor center to learn more about its history.
One must-visit neighborhood is Harbourside. This bustling port area houses numerous restaurants, cafes, and bars. You can walk along the dock. Moreover, if you time it right, you can also attend cultural events and festivals held regularly.
Bath is a UNESCO World Heritage spa town, known for its well-preserved Roman baths.
Among the best activities are wandering the elegant Georgian streets and visiting the stunning Bath Abbey. Of course, we recommend indulging in the modern thermal baths.
Like Oxford, which we’ll touch on later, Cambridge is another historic university town with gorgeous buildings and picturesque gardens.
Among the gardens to visit are the Cambridge Botanic Gardens, providing a green oasis of peace. Stroll through the landscaped gardens and discover greenhouses housing exotic species.
If the weather permits, we suggest a walk along the River Cam and a punt ride.
Lastly, you can also visit the renowned King’s College and its chapel.
Famed worldwide for its prestigious university, Oxford is a historic city housing stunning university colleges.
A popular activity is touring the University of Oxford’s colleges. Explore famous ones like Christ Church (which inspired settings for the popular Harry Potter movies), Magdalen College, and New College, just to name a few. These colleges feature historic buildings and beautiful gardens. They often house unique libraries and chapel rooms.
Also, take a stroll in the Oxford Botanic Gardens. Located near the Cherwell River, they offer a serene atmosphere for walks, showcasing a vast variety of plants. It’s one of the oldest botanic gardens in the UK, with over 7,000 plant species to discover.
If there’s one museum not to miss in Oxford, it’s the Ashmolean Museum. The Ashmolean is the world’s oldest university museum, housing an extensive collection of art and antiques. It includes European artwork, and Egyptian, Greek, and Roman antiquities.
7- Lake District
The Lake District is a scenic region in North West England, known for its lakes, mountains, and breathtaking landscapes.
It’s a haven for nature lovers. You can go hiking, boat rides, and snap countless photos.
Popular routes include the ascent of Scafell Pike, England’s highest mountain, and a hiking path around Derwentwater lake.
Speaking of lakes, the Lake District is renowned for its picturesque glacial lakes. Enjoy a cruise on Windermere, England’s largest lake, or rent a boat to explore other lakes like Ullswater.
This town is the birthplace of William Shakespeare, making it an essential cultural destination!
You can visit Shakespeare’s birthplace and, more broadly, stroll the town’s charming streets.
Regarding the birthplace, it’s now a museum dedicated to his life and works. Explore the very house he was born in! Furthermore, you’ll learn more about his family and discover interactive displays about his life and plays.
As for theater, Stratford-upon-Avon is home to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, where you can watch plays and shows inspired by Shakespeare’s works.
Lastly, it’s advised to take a cruise on the Avon River. During the cruise, enjoy a relaxing ride on the Avon River and admire the picturesque scenes of Stratford-upon-Avon. Some cruises offer commentary on the town’s history and its ties with Shakespeare.
In Liverpool, we recommend visiting the Beatles Story and the Liverpool Beatles Museum. Remember, Liverpool is the birthplace of the Beatles, one of the most influential music bands ever!
Explore Beatles-focused attractions, such as the Beatles Story and the Beatles museum, to discover the band’s history and its profound impact on music.
Moreover, if you’re a soccer fan, take a guided tour of Anfield and Goodison Park stadiums to learn more about Liverpool and Everton football clubs’ histories. It’ll let you feel the passionate ambiance of English soccer.
York is a historic city in Northern England, celebrated for its well-preserved medieval heritage.
The top activity is exploring York Minster, a remarkable Gothic cathedral and one of Northern Europe’s largest. Admire its spectacular architecture and climb the tower for a panoramic view of York. It’s also an opportunity to inspect its stained glass from inside.
Furthermore, stroll around the old town. York’s historic center is surrounded by well-maintained medieval walls. A delightful experience is walking along the narrow cobbled streets, observing the timber-framed buildings, and soaking in York’s medieval ambiance.
Among England’s top sightseeing spots is Brighton, a vibrant seaside city on the southern coast.
Visiting Brighton gives you the chance to explore the Royal Pavilion. It’s an extravagant palace built in the early 19th century, showcasing Indian and Chinese architectural styles. Tour the ornately decorated interior and roam the surrounding gardens.
Additionally, we advise a walk along Brighton’s promenade. Revel in the fresh sea air while observing Brighton’s beach and its iconic Palace Pier. It’s a classic British seaside experience.
Durham is renowned for its Norman cathedral and castle, both designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Durham Cathedral, dating back to the 11th century, is an architectural gem and one of England’s most striking cathedrals. It’s renowned for its rib-vaulted ceilings.
Besides the cathedral, Durham Castle is another iconic landmark. This Norman castle, dating back to the 11th century, served as a symbol of Norman power. Nowadays, it’s part of Durham University. It’s open to visitors, letting them admire its medieval architecture and learn about its history.
To experience more of Durham, we recommend exploring the city’s historic center. Stroll around its cobbled streets, dotted with historic buildings, and indulge in local eateries.
Warwick is known for Warwick Castle, an impressively preserved medieval fortress.
When you visit Warwick Castle, you’ll be transported back to medieval times. It’s one of England’s top castles and lets visitors explore its impressive interiors, ramparts, and towers.
While there, explore the State Rooms. These rooms, furnished with stunning antiques, tell the story of the castle’s rich history. Not to mention, they’re quite photogenic!
Additionally, the castle grounds are vast. Roam around the meticulously maintained gardens, and if you’re traveling with kids, let them have fun in the Horrible Histories Maze, which makes history enjoyable and engaging.
Canterbury, a historic city in Southeast England, is famous for the Canterbury Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The cathedral, dating back to the 6th century, is England’s oldest and among its most beautiful. It’s an iconic place of worship and a spiritual center for millions.
Inside, admire its awe-inspiring architecture and learn about its tumultuous history, particularly the assassination of Archbishop Thomas Becket in 1170.
Also, Canterbury’s historic center is lovely to explore. Stroll along its narrow streets and admire the timber-framed buildings. There are numerous boutiques, cafes, and eateries to discover.
Lastly, if you’re into literature, immerse yourself in the world of Geoffrey Chaucer by visiting the Canterbury Tales attraction. It brings to life the stories of the “Canterbury Tales” through interactive displays and guided tours.
Newcastle is among England’s top sightseeing spots, thanks to its rich industrial history and vibrant cultural scene.
One must-visit spot is the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. Housed in a former flour mill, this major art venue displays works by both established and emerging artists.
Moreover, the Newcastle Quayside is buzzing with life. This regenerated area along the River Tyne houses numerous bars, restaurants, and cultural venues. As you stroll around, you’ll spot the iconic Tyne Bridge, which offers splendid views of the city.
Additionally, if you’re passionate about history, we suggest visiting the Newcastle Castle. This medieval fortress tells the story of Newcastle’s history. Inside, explore the castle’s chambers, and if you’re up for it, climb the tower for panoramic views of the city.
Manchester is among the top sightseeing spots in England.
It’s an industrial city that played a vital role in the Industrial Revolution. Nowadays, it’s a vibrant city with a rich cultural and sports scene.
For football enthusiasts, visit the National Football Museum and take a guided tour of Old Trafford, home to Manchester United.
If you’re into arts and history, visit the Manchester Art Gallery and the Museum of Science and Industry. Both venues offer enlightening exhibitions on art, history, and Manchester’s industrial past.
Moreover, the Northern Quarter is a must-visit neighborhood. It’s Manchester’s most bohemian area, filled with independent boutiques, trendy cafes, and vibrant street art. Roam around and soak in the hip atmosphere.
Chester, located in Northwest England, is known for its well-preserved Roman walls.
Visiting Chester lets you experience history firsthand. Walk along the Roman walls, stretching for about 2 miles around the city. They offer splendid views of Chester’s historic buildings.
Moreover, explore Chester’s old town. The Rows are unique, two-tiered medieval galleries housing boutiques, cafes, and eateries. Strolling around is like stepping back in time.
Additionally, visit Chester Cathedral. This striking Gothic cathedral boasts intricate stained glass and stunning architecture.
Furthermore, Chester Zoo is among the UK’s best. It houses over 35,000 animals and 500 different species, making it a great family-friendly attraction.
Salisbury, located in Southern England, is renowned for the Salisbury Cathedral, a Gothic masterpiece.
The cathedral, dating back to the 13th century, houses one of the four original copies of the Magna Carta. Its tower offers panoramic views of Salisbury and the nearby countryside.
Moreover, explore Salisbury’s historic center. Its cobbled streets, historic buildings, and bustling market square are delightful to discover.
Lastly, while in Salisbury, consider visiting the nearby Old Sarum. It’s an ancient hill fort and the original site of Salisbury. It offers panoramic views and a journey into England’s ancient past.
Windsor, a town near London, is famous for Windsor Castle, the world’s oldest and largest occupied castle.
When in Windsor, Windsor Castle is a must-visit. Explore its State Rooms, St George’s Chapel, and the Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House. The castle is a symbol of the British monarchy, showcasing its grandeur and rich history.
Moreover, take a stroll in the Windsor Great Park. This vast park, spanning thousands of acres, is a green oasis offering numerous trails, lakes, and gardens.
If you’re traveling with kids, consider visiting LEGOLAND Windsor. It’s a fun-filled theme park inspired by the popular LEGO toys, offering numerous rides and attractions.
Bournemouth, a coastal town in Southern England, offers a mix of sandy beaches and vibrant nightlife.
Its top attraction is Bournemouth Beach. This sandy beach is perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and watersports. Moreover, stroll along Bournemouth Pier, offering numerous attractions, eateries, and splendid sea views.
Additionally, the Bournemouth Oceanarium is a delightful marine attraction. It houses numerous marine species and offers immersive underwater experiences.
Lastly, Bournemouth’s town center is bustling with shops, restaurants, and nightlife venues. It’s the perfect place to unwind after a day at the beach.
This is a curated list of top sightseeing spots in England, letting you explore England’s rich history, diverse culture, and breathtaking landscapes.