Are you making plans for this or the next bank holiday weekend? One of the UK town or cities voted best in our Which? Travel survey might be worth investigating…
We asked readers to rate the food, accommodation and sights at destinations across the nation, and, drumroll please: your favourite city, as voted in our most recent survey was… Edinburgh, garnering an overall city score of 91%.
Edinburgh vs Glasgow
Perhaps this is controversial, but I’m a little surprised that it beat Glasgow (which trailed its Scottish rival with a score of 82%). Yes, Edinburgh is charming, but it’s also expensive and it’s very, well, English.
While Edinburgh may host the world’s largest arts festival (the Edinburgh Fringe) in August each year, something Glasgow can’t quite rival (Glasgow has its own Southside Fringe in May), outside of that heady, theatrical season, Glasgow has a year-round buzz that Edinburgh just can’t seem to muster.
Glasgow has a vibrant foodie scene (try any number of great restaurants and bars on Argyle Street in Finnieston); its own share of beautiful buildings: Royal Exchange Square, Kelvingrove Art Gallery or the stunning Harry Potter-esque Glasgow University; and an underground train network to rival London’s. So Glasgow, for me, is the clear winner.
Oxford vs Cambridge
Another surprising outcome for me was the battle of two university cities: Oxford and Cambridge. Oxford garnered a city score of 84%, making it best medium UK city in our survey, while Cambridge floundered (comparably) a few oar lengths behind with a score of 78%. Perhaps more Which? members are Oxford alumni?
Admittedly, Cambridge’s city centre is a little less compact, but it more than makes up for it with gorgeous green spaces. Plus, there’s the tranquil pleasure of punting (or being punted!) down the Cam past Clare College and Trinity College, and under the Bridge of Sighs, before having a well-earned riverside drink at The Anchor pub.
Best small city
If size matters to you (and by that I mean if small’s what you’re looking for in a city break), then plump for the city voted best in our small category: Wells.
England’s smallest city is very walkable, with a historic core that’s hardly a mile wide and full of treasures such as England’s first Gothic cathedral or one of Britain’s only intact residential medieval streets.
But there’s a whole host of cities to check out (51 in total), so to plan your next weekend break see the full results of our survey.
If you’re wondering where your favourite city or town is and why you didn’t get to vote, it’s because you aren’t on our reader panel. Have your say in next year’s survey, as well as voting in our world and European city surveys, by signing up here.
Do you agree with the survey results? Is Edinburgh too ‘English’ for you? And where’s the better punting had: Oxford or Cambridge?