From beautiful mediaeval towns, with narrow, cobbled streets and ancient city walls, to quaint seaside resorts overlooking sweeping shorelines, to bustling, cosmopolitan cities - there’s something to suit every couple when choosing a break in the UK. Whether you're after a weekend getaway, a longer holiday, or even a travelling tour visiting several destinations, you’ll find the ideal staycation. 

So, relax with a cuppa and choose the perfect break for you and your partner. 

Couple sightseeing


1. Cardiff

An easily accessible city via a relaxed train ride, we're very proud of Cardiff as our capital city.  

Declared the capital of Wales since 1955, this majestic, cosmopolitan city has numerous accolades to its name. These include being a finalist for the European Capital of Culture, making Visit Britain’s UK destinations top 10, coming in the top 13 global places to visit judged by US travel guide Frommers and Guardian readers 8th favourite UK city. 

Like many Welsh cities, Cardiff has a history stretching back through time, and this is apparent around every corner. Cardiff Castle is undoubtedly one of the most romantic spots in the city. Surrounded by glorious landscaped gardens, the fairytale turrets give clues to the magic that resides inside this stunning castle. 

Richly decorated with lavish opulence, each room has its own theme. Layered gold, flamboyant murals, polished marble and intricate carvings are around every corner, even the grounds recreate the feel of lush, verdant Mediterranean gardens. 

The vision of John, the 3rd Marquess of Bute, reported to be the richest man in the world at one time, and the popular but exclusive architect, William Burges, work began in 1866 to transform the 2000-year-old Castle. 

Offering the ultimate in romance, the Castle is a licenced wedding venue and regularly hosts concerts and other events. If you’re planning a short break in Cardiff, this is one place that should be on your itinerary. 

If you’re looking for a deliciously decadent experience, head over to the luxury Spa at St David’s. Situated in Havannah Street, Cardiff Bay, the spa is the perfect place to relax and be pampered for couples and individuals alike. Enjoy the unique water corridor, with its beautifully elegant swan fountains, aromatherapy massages and warm bubbling water beds, or why not book yourselves into the sumptuous on-site hotel? 

Whilst in the Cardiff Bay area, take time to explore. With waterfront cafes to watch the world go by, cultural attractions including the architecturally stunning Millennium Centre and the cosmopolitan Mermaid Quay with its boutique stores, the area has been beautifully regenerated bringing a vibrant feel to the waterside. Many hours can be spent here, enjoying the bohemian buzz, and experiencing Cardiff’s creative side. 

Cardiff Bay


2. Portmeirion 

This North Wales masterpiece was designed and built by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis in the 1900s, and thanks to its unique architecture, has featured in many TV programmes, including as ‘the Village’ in the cult 60s series The Prisoner. Many celebrities have visited too - the Beatles, Noël Coward, Ingrid Bergman, and more recently Jools Holland, to name a few. 

Based on an unnamed fishing village on the Italian Riviera, Portmeirion is often described as beautifully romantic with a charmingly Mediterranean atmosphere. Topiary hedging, fountains and water features, and pastel washed walls line the pavier pathways with the peaceful tranquillity continuing throughout the village. 

Small boutique hotels are dotted around the village piazzas, unobtrusive restaurants serve mouth-watering delicacies, and even luxury spas exist to cater to your every whim. So, for an unforgettable experience, book a break in Portmeirion.


3. London

For a short break, London has a lot to offer couples. From sunset boat rides down the Thames to a performance at the Royal Opera House, you won’t have to try too hard to find the perfect idea. 

For couples seeking a unique experience, book a table at the  Dans le Noir  restaurant. With branches in Paris, Marrakech and Madrid, dining in the pitch-black allows sight to take a back seat, while other senses are heightened. Exploring the freedom from visual preconceptions, food is suddenly new and exciting, while communication intensifies, becoming authentic and spontaneous. 

Kew Gardens, on the other hand, is a feast for the eyes. With natural woodlands, the glorious arboretum, and over 50,000 living plants, some only found in Kew’s collections, it’s easy to spend several days lost in the tranquillity of the gardens.

Arguably a tourist trap, the London Eye still makes for a fantastic attraction. Offering jaw-dropping views over the city. Also known as the Millennium Wheel, it’s Europe’s tallest cantilevered big wheel and is visited by over 3 million people every year. Designed to give a 360° view, each of the 32 capsules can hold up to 25 passengers, there are opportunities to make this attraction even more special. Capsules can be privately booked by couples wishing to enjoy a romantic dining experience above the rooftops of the city, complete with a bottle of bubbly. 


4. Cambridge

On the banks of the picturesque River Cam, the city of Cambridge has its roots in the Bronze Age, with the university founded in the early 1200s. So it’s not surprising that Cambridge is one of the top UK destinations for a city break.  

High on the list for many couples is taking a punt out on the river. Whether you chose to do it yourselves or hire a chauffeur, there is nothing more relaxing than floating gently down the River Cam, being brushed by the weeping willows as you pass by, and watching graceful swans glide along. Punts, a flat bottomed, shallow boat, are often large enough to enjoy a picnic while you’re on the water, or at least pop a bottle of champers. 

With culture around every corner and history under every stone, Cambridge offers something to suit every taste. From galleries and museums to contemporary performances and delicious dining experiences, this city is a must-visit. 


5. Oxford 

Established in the 12th century, Oxford, like Cambridge, has grown up around its world-renowned university. Rich with history, the city of dreaming spires, as it is known, offers plenty to experience on a weekend break. 

If culture is your thing, head for the Bodleian Library - one of the oldest libraries in Europe. When wandering around this awe-inspiring building, the seven centuries the building has stood for, lend a timelessness to the corridors and raftered ceilings. Below the towers, the rare and treasured manuscripts remain at the optimal temperature to preserve their precious leaves. Perfect for an afternoon visit, the Bodleian Library is a place to get lost in. 

The narrow twisting alleyways of Oxford hide all manner of gems, and one such place is The Turf Tavern. Popular with the famous and locals alike, including the Harry Potter cast, Stephen Hawking, C.S. Lewis and TV’s Inspector Morse, it has sat on the same spot since 1381. 


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6. Llandudno

Known as ‘the Queen of Welsh Watering Places', Llandudno is located on the beautiful north coast of Wales, and with its sweeping promenade leading straight onto the clean soft sand, this destination is perfect for couples wanting to get away from the hustle and bustle. 

This two-mile stretch is bookended by, to the west, the Great Orme headland, and to the east, Little Orme. The former is inhabited by Kashmiri goats - the original pair a gift to the town, and their pure white coats shine out as they nimbly climb the steep limestone cliffs. Rising nearly 210 metres, the name is derived from the Old Norse for sea worm. 

The train station occupies a site in the heart of the town, making Llandudno an ideal destination to visit by train.  



7. Liverpool

They say you’ll never be bored in Liverpool, and with so many things to do and see, they are absolutely right. 

On the east of the Mersey Estuary, and now famous for its culture, music and friendly locals, Liverpool once played an important role in industry, including transport and manufacturing. There are numerous places to stay, from chintzy to luxury spa boutiques, and many will, for a small charge, make up a picnic for you to enjoy, and Formby beach is the ideal place to head towards. With sweeping sands, banked by high, protective dunes and behind these, sweet-scented pine woodlands, the beach is under the guardianship of the National Trust

If you’re in need of something a little more exotic, try the Revolucion de Cuba. Bringing hot Havannah nights, Tequila, and tapas to Liverpool’s Albert Dock, let the Latin vibes excite and intrigue you. 


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8. Swansea 

In the south of Wales lies the town of Swansea. 

A popular destination for couples looking for a peaceful getaway on the coast, alongside numerous attractions within the city, the stunning nature havens of the Gower Peninsula and Mumbles are just on its doorstep. 

The rich, varied biodiversity of the Gower offers a rare glimpse of an undisturbed coastal habitat and was the UK’s first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Widely considered the most popular, Which? readers voted it their favourite AONB in 2020. Dramatic limestone cliffs, wild moors, and golden sandy beaches enticed visitors here year after year, and with puffins, seals, buzzards and the rare, but treasured, choughs, it’s a nature lover's dream. 

For fans of life under canvas, camping on the Peninsula is a great experience, but for those seeking a little more comfort, there are a wealth of cosy cottages and small friendly hotels to book. 


9. Bath

Named after the Roman-built baths, the city of Bath in the picturesque county of Somerset has plenty to offer as a holiday destination. Although you can’t sink into the original Roman Baths, a visit to the ancient buildings is a great place to start. The immersive tour and CGI reconstructions allow you to enjoy Roman life at its most decadent. If this merely whets your appetite for more, though, head to the Thermae Bath Spa which brings the hot spa experience into the 21st century. Located in, appropriately enough, Hot Bath Street, this site is wholly dedicated to relaxation, comfort and complete luxury. It even includes a stunning rooftop retreat, with panoramic views over the city. 

Just stroll along Bath’s glorious golden hued crescents, and you’re transported back to Jane Austen’s Regency England. She lived and wrote her novels from her home in Bath in the early 1800s, and the Jane Austen Centre is perfect for fans of Mr Darcy (and who isn’t). The stunning architecture that appeared in many of her books is the reason that Bath has the unique honour of being the only UK city that’s been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


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10. York

The walled cathedral city of York lies in the northeast of England, on the banks of the rivers Ouse and Foss. A settlement since the Roman era, York, known in Old Norse as Jórvík, celebrates its rich, diverse heritage around every corner and a visit to the Jorvik Viking Centre is a good start to your adventure. For fans of HBO’s Game of Thrones, you’ll feel right at home among the sights and sounds of life in the land of Jon Snow.

For the more conventionally romantic, a stroll along the riverbank at sunset is the perfect end to the day. With easily accessible paths along both sides of the Ouse, there are numerous small restaurants, coffee shops and quaint bars to enjoy, or pack a picnic and relax with a refreshing Pimms on a warm summer evening.