Paint the town red at these top 10 UK party destinations
Charlotte McKee puts on her dancing shoes and raises a glass to the definitive list of UK cities that know how to party…
Feel like a night on the toon? Diverse and vibrant, Newcastle boasts a bustling club night every single day of the week. Multiple ‘hot spots’ are scattered around the city, tempting revellers with high-spirited pubs and clubs. The Diamond Strip is renowned for luxury bars where you can party into the small hours, but for a more laid-back night, head to the Jesmond area in the northern suburbs. Pub crawls are infamous and the sense of humour of the city’s residents is up there with the best… so you’re also guaranteed lots of fun banter on your night out. Sup on a Newcastle Brown Ale whilst mingling with local Geordies – and the next morning, mop it up with a proper Geordie breakfast at the first ever UK Greggs!
Discover why Bristol’s club scene is fast gaining legendary status with a trip to the West Country’s social capital. Inventive pop up venues and a musical community like no other – it’s never dull! Increasing numbers of hipster events are proving this – ever wondered what a rave in a fancy dress shop is like, or fancied attending a hip-hop brunch party? Look no further than Bristol! Too far out for your tastes? Ease yourself in at Aluna by sampling their weird and wonderful cocktails – ‘mixology’ is their secret weapon! The Waterfront area offers an array of bars and clubs to trawl if your up for a wild night or have a more sedate one listening to live music on one of the boat bars – the Thekla or the Grain Barge. If cider is your tipple The Apple has an amazing array of apple-tastic flavours! Rock up to Stokes Croft for an alternative scene where The Full Moon hosts an eclectic mix of courtyard partying and The Canteen squeezes a diverse crowd within it’s old ‘office building’ walls. One things for sure in Bristol… you won’t be short of a drinking hole to suit all tastes and you can keep going til the sun rises if you’ve got the stamina.
Ravers unite! Notoriously rowdy, Glasgow offers a condensed club scene where you’ll find the main hot spots grouped together. There’s an array of nights to suit all tastes just a hop, skip and a stumble from one another. While the city may have a ‘tough nut’ reputation, it’s one of the friendliest too! Recently remodeled, immerse yourself in an effortlessly cool atmosphere found at the trendy venues, such as Hillhead Bookclub, in this thriving metropolis. Sauchiehall or Bath St are popular places to head for a lively night. Raise a dram or two of whisky to celebrate as the Glaswegians do.
Oozing character and just a stone’s throw from Glasgow lies Scotland’s bonny capital Edinburgh. There’s a diverse mix of venues providing for all tastes and ages. Hang out with fellow travellers in the Old Town and mosey on down to Cowgate for a wild atmosphere and rich heritage in the quirky clubs and taverns. Why not encounter more contemporary bars such as ‘Why Not Nightclub‘ in the fashionable New Town? A great night is guaranteed wherever you choose, but note that the city becomes extremely crowded during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival season – book well in advance for August and September!
Welcome to the Northern powerhouse, a must-visit for those seeking nocturnal adventure! Nightlife in Manchester is extremely varied to say the least and wherever you end up, nights start early and finish late here. Being the birth place of countless musical movements, discover dozens of live music venues, niche clubbing scenes and the UK’s most innovative bars and restaurants. Stumble upon authentic old pubs such as ‘Peveril of The Peak’ for an early pint before exploring the infamous Northern Quarter. Mingle with eccentric locals, find the trendiest pubs and you’re guaranteed the best night ever! If you need names of clubs and bars, try Revolution for cheap, cheerful and fun, Gorilla for dance-tastic times, Lola Lo for a unique blend of drinking, dancing and Polynesian vibes…
Not usually top of a list when looking for a party city but Nottingham has rock roots which give it an old school cool feel. When the sun goes down the buzzing night scene comes to life. If funk is your vibe, Pandora’s Box boasts Motown and Northern Soul. You can also get those hips swaying in the popular Oceana Club, or if your are you more bass ale than bass line, have a crack at the finest real ale saloons in the midlands instead. Get inspired at the cultural hangouts dotted around the city and wind down on a chic evening river cruise. Full of variety and voted safest city in the UK after dark!
One of the coolest seaside towns in the UK and known for its avant-garde arts scene, defy the norm and embark on an unforgettable night in Brighton. Get lost in a sea of check shirts, Verdi beards and beanie hats. This super trendy town offers a host of entertainment aimed at the young and unconventional. Weekend stag dos take up the main drag, but if you want something a bit different, dive into the offbeat pubs for a more unique experience. Kemp Town, the gay quarter, entices those of all persuasions with its colourful array of bars and clubs. Outlandish knees-up are on the cards, so get stuck in and revel in the boundless oddities on offer.
For a capital, Cardiff is relatively small. No need for costly taxis or lengthy tube rides, you’ll find everything you need in the centre! A welcoming and friendly destination for visitors, with a rich heritage and a casual vibe. Socialise among bustling crowds, sip stylish cocktails, rough it at student clubs or wind down in rustic pubs – absorb the wondrous charm of this cultural hub. Student populated district Cathays, ensures a lively night term time but is a ghost town otherwise. The main locations home to bars and clubs are The Friary, The West End (St Mary St – Mill Lane), The Castle Area and, just over a mile away (5 mins in a cab), at the waterfront, you have The Bay Area (Mermaid Quay). Wherever you end up, raise a glass and toast “iechyd da”!
This list wouldn’t be complete without a mention of the UK’s capital city! A nightclub mecca with an infinite number of hip hot spots, London is a melting pot full of diverse and exciting folk. It’s also a real treasure for those seeking that multicultural vibe which Britain has become so famous for. Dodge the tourist track to stumble upon stunning multi-ethnic communities, hidden bars and secret watering holes. Soho shouldn’t be missed however – a den of iniquity with party-lovers tumbling from bar doors and a tangible hum of excitement in the air. But, round your trip off at the musical hub that is Camden Town, boasting quirky markets, underground clubs and exciting events that’ll satisfy your party cravings. The UK’s capital city never sleeps!
The cheeky ‘Scouse’ charm sets the scene for an eventful night out in this northern coastal city. Zany and upbeat, the Ropewalks district effortlessly pulls in the crowds due to places like Krazyhouse – a three-floored nightclub set in a former factory. Seel Street dishes out a more laid back indie/alternative vibe with Heebie Jeebies leading the way with live bands on in their outdoor courtyard, while Mathew Street attracts people from across the globe for its world-famous Cavern Club – the birthplace of the Beatles. Liverpool certainly knows how to throw a party and so get your booty on this Northern dance floor – it was voted ‘Cultural Capital of Europe’ back in 2008 for a reason!