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England

United Kingdom
Ambleside featuring heritage architecture, a small town or village and a river or creek

During the height of its empire, this island nation built iconic buildings, acquired superb art collections and developed two of the world’s greatest universities.

England is notorious for its wealth, yet visiting the country as a tourist is surprisingly affordable. Its largest museums are free and its grand architecture and beautiful universities can be appreciated from the outside. Stay within a budget while seeing London’s sights.

London is filled with grand buildings constructed from the wealth of England’s once vast empire. The Elizabeth Tower, otherwise known as the Big Ben clock tower, crowns the massive 19th-century Parliamentary building of Westminster Palace on the River Thames. Head downriver to find the iconic Tower Bridge, a drawbridge supported by two tall Victorian towers. Drop by Buckingham Palace, the Queen’s stately London residence.

Finish your London trip with a visit to any of its major museums. The extensive British Museum, the Tate Modern, the luxurious Victoria and Albert Museum and the National Gallery all feature free admission to their permanent exhibits.

Leave London to explore England’s two nearby university towns of Oxford and Cambridge. Cross the ancient courtyards and well-cropped lawns of Oxford University. Tour Bodleian Library, which at over 400 years old is one of England’s oldest libraries. The library’s monumental Radcliffe Camera rotunda is an Oxford icon. Afterward, drive up to Cambridge and visit its many universities. Cruise down the River Cam and float under the Bridge of Sighs, a covered bridge patterned after one in Venice.

Travel southwest to find Stonehenge in the British countryside. Despite its fame, the circle of rock formations from the 31st century B.C. is still a mystery to behold. The best time to visit is during the winter or summer solstice when the stones line up with the rising sun, although huge crowds can take away from the magic of this experience.

Arrive in England via one of its international airports - London alone has six. Get around the cities on the extensive public transit network and travel around the country by train or rental car. Most travelers like to take at least one of England’s iconic cabs during their stay as well.

Popular cities in England

London showing night scenes, skyline and a skyscraper
London
Known for Museum, Theatre and Entertainment
From Buckingham Palace to Abbey Road, London has a rich history and culture ready and waiting to be discovered.

Reasons to visit

  • London Eye
  • The Shard
  • Buckingham Palace
Victoria Square featuring heritage architecture, a city and a square or plaza
Birmingham
Known for Friendly People, Dining and Poolside Bars
Britain’s second largest city is an exciting mix of museums, music, food and a vast canal network.

Reasons to visit

  • Symphony Hall
  • International Convention Centre
  • Birmingham Hippodrome
Royal Liver Building featuring a city and heritage architecture
Liverpool
Known for Friendly People, Poolside Bars and Shopping
Catch a show at the Beatles’ first venue, tour the port where the Titanic was registered and see one of Europe’s best soccer teams battle their rivals in this north England city.

Reasons to visit

  • Royal Liver Building
  • Albert Dock
  • Liverpool Pier Head Ferry Terminal
St. Peter\'s Square showing heritage architecture, a city and railway items
Manchester
Known for Friendly People, Shopping and Business

Reasons to visit

  • Old Trafford
  • Manchester Opera House
  • Museum of Science and Industry
Wills Memorial Building showing heritage elements, night scenes and a city
Bristol
Known for Friendly People, Shopping and Business
With a youthful arts and entertainment scene, international festivals and many family-friendly attractions, Bristol is one of the U.K.’s most vibrant cities.

Reasons to visit

  • We The Curious
  • St Nicholas Market
  • Millennium Square
York Minster featuring a square or plaza, heritage architecture and a church or cathedral
York
Known for Friendly People, Poolside Bars and Tour
Medieval monuments set around cobblestone lanes, a lively arts scene and scenic shopping streets make York one of England’s most captivating cities.

Reasons to visit

  • York Minster
  • Shambles
  • Jorvik Viking Centre