The UK has many amazing destinations for mini city breaks and days out with countless things to see and do. With summer just around the corner, why not enjoy a staycation with Emma Muldoon’s list of the 6 most accessible cities to visit in the UK.
Being Scotland’s largest city, Glasgow does not disappoint in terms of also being one of the best cities in the world. Packed with culture, history, amazing shopping, museums and galleries, music venues, restaurants, stunning architecture and so much more. Glasgow is a city not to be missed and is brimming with accessible things to do. Why not visit the wheelchair accessible Riverside Museum with plenty of open space throughout the displays as well as wheelchair lifts to see inside the trains and a lovely cafe restaurant. Kelvingrove Art Gallery is another accessible museum in Glasgow offering free BSL guided tours, hearing loop, disabled parking and accessible toilets. Enjoy some retail therapy at Buchanan Galleries or St Enoch Centre where you will find a Changing Places toilet.
The capital city of Wales and one of the largest cities in the UK. Cardiff has developed into a culturally diverse city with an interesting mix of old and new buildings. Large modern shopping centres and the old Victorian building that is Cardiff Market has been around since the 1700s selling a range of products – head to the market if you are looking for a unique shopping experience. For more culture and entertainment head to the Cardiff Bay area and visit the home to the arts, Wales Millennium Centre. With a changing places toilet, impressive architecture and a range of performances from musicals, ballet, opera, comedy and more, there will be something of interest for everyone at this performing arts centre. Don’t miss Senedd (Welsh Assembly Building) and take a cruise with Cardiff Harbour Tours on their wheelchair accessible Aquabus.
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Belfast is fast becoming one of the most exciting and cosmopolitan destinations for a city break. Known as the birthplace of the famous RMS Titanic, you can now enjoy wheelchair accessible tours and learn all about its history, explore the shipyard, decks and interactive galleries at Titanic Belfast. Some wheelchair users may also enjoy the Shipyard Ride as well as multi-sensory tours with audio and printed tours available for visitors with hearing or visual impairments. Getting around the city is fairly easy due to its compact size, but it may be fun to take a sightseeing bus tour or a private tour with Belfast Famous Black Cabs. A trip to Belfast may not be complete until you’ve visited the Giant’s Causeway. This magnificent wonder is a must-see and there is an accessible bus that will take you down to the stones and even has a changing places toilet. Other accessible attractions include the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum and Crumlin Road Gaol.
Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital city is famous for many things, but mainly for Edinburgh Castle, the medieval old town of The Royal Mile and the Fringe Festival. With whisky being Scotland’s national drink, a trip to Edinburgh wouldn’t be complete without a visit to The Scotch Whisky Experience. This top attraction offers multi-sensory tours, a wheelchair accessible whisky barrel ride, hearing loop system and BSL tours. Edinburgh Bus Tours have a range of accessibility features onboard and are a great way of seeing the city’s main points of interest quickly and easily. For something a little more relaxing away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre why not visit The Royal Botanic Garden. These stunning gardens are the ideal place to spend a lovely spring or summer day.
Liverpool is a city known for its music and most famously the musical talents to hail from the Mersey area, The Beatles. Take an interesting journey through time and learn all about the fab four at The Beatles Story with accessibility features including lifts, inductions loop, assistance dogs welcome, sign language assistance and accessible toilets. After you’ve taken a Beatles tour why not stop off for a bite to eat and a coffee at the Fab4 Cafe. Despite there being many older buildings and cobblestones in some areas, Liverpool is becoming more accessible, especially the newly regenerated areas. The World Museum, Liverpool Cathedral, a walk along the waterfront and the Mersey Ferry are also fun accessible things to do in Liverpool. You will be spoilt for choice with the range of amazing restaurants and cafe available.
Situated on the River Wensum, the medieval city of Norwich is bursting with character and charm. Norwich is a city offering something for everyone whether that’s local history, relaxation or entertainment. First off, head to Norwich Castle, which was once a prison in the 19th century. Now the Castle is home to many art and history exhibitions with access throughout, apart from the dungeons or battlements. If you are looking to be entertained then look no further than a show at The Theatre Royal or The Norwich Playhouse, both offering full wheelchair access and accessible toilets. Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts is another beautiful museum and art gallery you must visit in Norwich. This large contemporary building is the perfect place to enjoy a day out browsing the galleries, eating in the spacious restaurant or admiring the various art pieces installed in the sculpture park. What’s not to love about Norwich?
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Cardiff Bay area © phil_bird/Depositphotos.com
The Scotch Whisky Experience © Emma Muldoon (simplyemma.co.uk)