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Where to go when

Best UK cities for a Christmas break

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Best UK cities for a Christmas break

Looking for a Christmas city break with festive markets and cosy pubs? We've picked our three favourite UK city destinations for a weekend of style, shopping, and maybe even some snow.

Bath – for style

If you’re the kind of person who wraps up presents beautifully and would never be seen sporting a cheesy Christmas jumper, Bath is the place for you. It does Christmas, and everything else, in style. 

Even the ice rink (bathonice.com, £7.75) in beautiful Victoria Park and the city centre’s Christmas market seem elegant rather than kitsch. 

That’s probably thanks to the backdrop of honey-coloured Georgian townhouses, which sets the scene for visitors all year round.

Read more: Best and worst city breaks in the UK

Bath, UK
Average hotel rate Accommodation Food and drink Cultural attractions Shopping Value for money City score
£118 86%
City score combines overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.

Glasgow – for snow 

Dreaming of a white Christmas? Your best bet is to head to Scotland, with odds as short as 2/1 for Glasgow. 

And even if there’s no snowfall, you can still cosy up in the famous Gluhwein House, or find unusual stocking fillers at the Christmas village in St Enoch Square. 

Once you’ve worked up an appetite exploring the city’s five-star shopping scene, it’s time to check out one of Glasgow’s many culinary options, also garnering a five-star rating from readers. Try Ubiquitous Chip for Scottish fare, and Cail Bruich for imaginative tasting menus.

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Glasgow, UK
Average hotel rate Accommodation Food and drink Cultural attractions Shopping Value for money City score
£85 82%
City score combines overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.

Birmingham – for shopping

From 16 November, the world’s biggest German Christmas market (outside of Germany or Austria) fills Victoria Square with the delicious smell of sizzling sausage and tankards of Bavarian beer. 

What’s more, the central Bull Ring and new Grand Central development above futuristic New Street railway station are far more convenient for a big shopping spree than the sprawl of London. 

Which? members gave Birmingham the full five stars for retail in our annual UK cities survey.

Birmingham, UK
Average hotel rate Accommodation Food and drink Cultural attractions Shopping Value for money City score
£79 70%
City score combines overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend.
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