The best staycation cities in the UK

Staycations are rising in popularity across the UK, and holidaymakers are beginning to appreciate the charm of cities that might be a little closer to home. From picturesque cobbled streets, to peaceful countryside getaways, many are now opting to stay local rather than venture further afield. 

This is fantastic news for many UK businesses, who’ll inevitably experience more footfall due to the rising number of holidaymakers. So, if you’re an entrepreneur looking to establish your own business, why not set up in one of these cities we’ve outlined below? 

The best UK staycation cities 

1. Derry 

Up first is Derry, which has a total index score of 17.21 out of 23. Derry is a city with history, culture, and a buzzing music scene. It’s also great when it comes to activities, as there are 11.76 art galleries per 100,000 people, and the average price of a cinema ticket is just £5.59. 

Derry is also the cheapest city on our UK list for a cup of coffee, with the average cup coming in at just £2.53. There are 12.94 vintage stores per 100,000 in the city, which means there’s evident demand for vintage clothing. If you’re hoping to establish your own vintage clothing business, Derry might be the place to do so. 

2. Kingston upon Hull 

Kingston upon Hull, a city in the East Riding of Yorkshire is next, with a score of 12.62. With a rich seafaring history and a thriving arts scene, it’s no wonder it ranks second on our list. 

This port city boasts intriguing museums, a cobbled Old Town, and stunning architecture, such as Hull Minster which visitors flock to. Kingston upon Hull also boasts a wide selection of reasonably priced leisure activities, and the average price of a cinema ticket is just £6.00 (slightly more than it would cost in Derry). 

3. Newport

Next up is Newport, which has a score of 12.54. Newport has something for everyone, whether you’re hoping to explore the ancient ruins or spend the day roaming around a modern art gallery. Newport is also one of the cheapest places on our list for coffee, with the average cup costing £2.81. 

Meanwhile, there are 75.81 fashion accessory stores in the city per 100,000 people, meaning there’s evident demand, but still plenty of space to establish your business if you’re hoping to open a similar store. Equally, Newport is fantastic if you’re looking for a somewhat-outdoorsy staycation. There’s 45.45% green space, meaning you’ll have plenty of options if you’re wanting to relax in a park or explore an idyllic nature reserve. 

4. Preston 

With a total score of 11.36, Preston is fourth on our list for UK staycations. A city in the heart of Lancashire, Preston offers visitors a wide range of gardens and city trails to explore. It’s also a city which boasts diversity and longstanding cultural traditions, therefore why not plan your staycation around one of its annual events? 

Preston offers a cost-effective staycation, with the average price of a taxi journey setting you back just £8.40. Equally, an average inexpensive meal will cost you just £10 in Preston. 

5. Edinburgh 

Edinburgh, a city known for its stunning architecture, steals the fifth spot with a score of 11.19. It’s a vibrant city which has charming vintage stores and countless food spots, not to mention its prestigious museums and art galleries. 

The city, however, is one of the more expensive options for a staycation on our list, but UK holidaymakers still adore it. There are 186.25 hotels per 100,000, meaning there’s plenty of choice when it comes to accommodation. Equally, Edinburgh is a great choice for a family staycation as it has a safety score of 68.78. 

The benefits of staycations for businesses 

Maybe you’re an eager entrepreneur looking to open your own business? If so, heading to one of these cities may give you the boost you need. Due to the volume of visitors, and their eagerness to shop, dine, and purchase goods, businesses will benefit from a high footfall and increased revenue. 

It’s clear that the staycation trend is here to stay, so, it’s definitely worth adapting your business, or establishing a new one to target this rise in staycations. 

Well, there we have it, the best cities for a staycation in the UK. The UK is filled with bustling cities which will offer holidaymakers a memorable trip. So, whether you’re drawn to the historic winding streets of Edinburgh, or are looking for a taste of charm in Derry, why not opt for a staycation this year? 

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a place to set up your business, you could consider one of these locations. Our guide on starting a business might be helpful if this sounds like something you’re interested in. 


This methodology evaluates the suitability of locations across the UK for staycations, utilising 19 factors including cost metrics, amenities, and safety scores. Data for these factors is normalised to a range of 0 to 1, with missing data receiving a score of 0. Each location is then assigned a total score out of 23, derived from the sum of normalised values. Factors like coffee price, cinema ticket cost, average taxi fare, and clothing expenses are weighted twice in the calculation. The rankings are based on these total scores. All data is sourced from platforms like Numbeo, TripAdvisor, and Google Maps, with accuracy confirmed as of January 26, 2024. Factors are indexed such that high values generally receive low scores and vice versa, with exceptions like safety score, green space, and cultural amenities where high values receive high scores.

SumUp Team