When it comes to the number of incredible cities on one land mass, Britain punches well above its weight. Its small geographical size simply means it’s easy to pack in an awesome 48-hour break in cities that are within just two to three hours from London and capture a real taste of Britain in a short space of time.
2019 is shaping up to be one of the most exciting years to visit. It doesn’t matter how often you’ve visited, London is a city that constantly innovates – you’ll always find the hottest hotels (new next year will be Robert de Niro’s first London hotel The Wellington and the colossal, 1,000-room Hard Rock Hotel), the latest foodie trends and the newest cultural hotspots. In 2019 check out the capital’s first-ever dedicated Borough of Culture – Waltham Forest – for original cultural events you won’t find elsewhere.
Don’t miss a trip to the iconic seaside resort of Brighton; it’s only 45 minutes from London and is one of England’s most liberal and inclusive cities, packed with entertaining amusements and contemporary and historic architectural masterpieces. Celebrating these will be the new Design Festival set to launch in the city in 2019, while a new outpost of exclusive members club and hotel Soho House is earmarked to open in town.
Only 90 minutes south west of London are the two very distinctive cities of Bristol and Bath. Check out Bath, the only destination in the UK where the entire city is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2019 you’ll be able to see the ongoing restoration to Bath Abbey and its new Discovery Centre. Bristol is a more avant-garde city; as well as being home to some of the world’s most legendary street art, 2019 will see the opening of the much-anticipated The Wave, a new inland surfing lake with three surf zones for different abilities and a high-performance surf centre for elite athletes and aspiring pros.
Hop on a train heading north west from London and, in just two hours, you’ll arrive in Manchester or Liverpool. 2019 sees the return of the epic Manchester International Festival, the world’s first festival of original work and special events, while Liverpool is feted as a hotbed of contemporary music – check out next year’s iconic international music festival Liverpool Sound City.
Got longer? Get ready to party in Newcastle in north-east England, only three hours from London …it’s a city packed with friendly pubs, stylish cocktail bars and clubs playing the hottest DJ sets. Head to one the latest concepts to hit the city, STACK, a creative social hub of entertainment and culture. Travel on 1.5 hours from Newcastle and find yourself in Scotland’s lively capital, Edinburgh, the Festival City; it hosts 11 international festivals from art to science, literature to Hogmanay (the biggest New Year’s Eve party), each bigger and better than the year before.
Britain is also home to Europe’s youngest capital city, Cardiff in Wales, 2.5 hours from London. Go for its striking waterfront, energetic nightlife and vibrant cultural scene. And, adding to its great value accommodation options, an EasyHotel in the city slated to open in 2019/2020, the first of its kind in Wales.