People often hear that the UK is one of the most expensive parts of the world to travel in. While the British Pound seems to have steadied well post-Brexit vote, the 4-country kingdom itself still ranks amongst one of the dearest destinations in Europe. To get a feel for the real cost of living in each of the four British countries here, you should head to the capital cities. These are usually where prices are extortionate and you can be that clever tourist by using some simple tricks to save money. Once you have explored the capitals, everything else will seem that little bit cheaper. Here are some tips for travelling cheap to the UK’s four capital cities of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
Despite the glamour of Oxford Street and the ridiculous £6 pints in Covent Garden, the English capital has lots of free sights as well as lots of nightly events which can save you money and keep you inspired by a city brimming with British culture yet booming in global commerce.
Head to the free museums, wander round hippy Camden, see the Greenwich Meantime Memorial.Accommodation wise, hostels are an option for really saving, but in fact as long as you use websites such as HotelsCombined for the cheapest hotel deals, you will be fine too.
2.Belfast, NORTHERN IRELAND
You’ll be glad to know that generally Belfast is the cheapest of the 4 UK capitals. Northern Ireland is also the least visited of the 4 capitals, which will no doubt make your wandering heart want more. A history of ship building, gang warfare, political standpoints and cultured music, make this an ideal place to spend your luxury “party money”. With many bars in the city centre now offering happy hours, free tours of the iconic Belfast City Hall and some gorgeous sights like the Cathedral Quarter (and St. Anne’s Cathedral) or Botanic Gardens, it’s also easy to enjoy the culture of the Northern Irish capital.
Those into politics can do a “black taxi tour”, visit the Northern Irish parliament at Stormont and for those into pure history – the Titanic Centre ranks as one of the best museums in Europe, if not the world.
Boasting a historic castle in the city centre and some of the best examples of Scottish pride, Edinburgh is a city of pure culture. Try real haggis in many downtown venues, visit the Scottish People museum for free. Entry to the Scottish parliament is also free and as a bonus you can often hear bagpipe music on the streets of the Golden Mile without having to spend any money.
Wales these days have a right to be proud again. Having reached the Semi Finals of the football European Championships inspired by Gareth Bale, the country is enjoying a new sense of nationalism.
Take in the sights of Cardiff Castle, a rugby match at the Millennium Stadium and grab a pint of Brains beer as you immerse yourself in Welsh culture. If you’re feeling extremely confident, do a course in learning the local language, Welsh and see how you get on. There will be some tongue twisters for sure!
So as you can see if you start by exploring the capital cities first, everything else will suddenly seem cheaper to you and you will already have pitted your wits against the strength of the British pound. If all else fails, you can jaunt to some of the islands like Guernsey, Jersey or the Isle of Man.