Everyone likes to think of their hometown as a friendly place to be. Glaswegians insist they’ll always go the extra mile, while Geordies will tell you their charm is unrivalled and Mancunians maintain that anyone’s welcome on the streets of their city. And there’s probably plenty of truth in that.
But we couldn’t help but wonder – which really is the UK and Ireland’s friendliest city for would-be visitors?
To find out, we studied thousands of TripAdvisor hotel reviews across 21 of the most visited towns & cities in the UK and Ireland. From Inverness to Bristol and everywhere in between, we trawled posts that had any mention of friendliness and recorded the star ratings given by the guests. Once we’d collected thousands of these ratings, we calculated the average at each location to give us a ‘friendliness score’, before ranking our cities to see where came out on top.
The great news is that every single one of our Top 21 friendliest places came out with more than a 4/5, proving good old fashioned British and Irish hospitality is alive and well. But it was the beautiful spa city of Bath that won out. With a superb rating of 4.84/5, perhaps there’s something in the water.
Not too far behind was another city with roman roots. York came in with a score 4.74, while Liverpool rounded off the top three, suggesting you’re in for a pleasant surprise when you choose a hotel stay by the Mersey.
Scotland fared particularly well. With Edinburgh placing 4th, Glasgow in 6th and Inverness just missing out on the top 10, you’ll be made to feel at home when you head north of the border.
Back over in England, Birmingham and Manchester’s jostle for the title of ‘second city’ is well documented. The latter managed to pull ever so slightly more visitors in 2016 (attracting 1.19M to Brum’s 1.12M) – but who won out when it came to warm welcomes?
With 4.6/5 and in 13th place, Manchester edged it. Birmingham came in 17th.
To the surprise of many, that’s a rank slightly bettered by the capital. An incredible 19 million people visited London during 2016 and it seems they were smitten with the reception they received. Of the 70,388 reviews we looked at, they returned an average score of 4.56 and 15th place, suggesting the slightly mean rep the city gets is surely underserved.
There was plenty of Irish charm on show in fellow capital Dublin, which came joint 12th, though 7th placed Belfast can lay claim to being the friendliest city on the Emerald Isle.
But if there’s one thing our study shows, it’s that you can expect outstanding hospitality when you choose a break at cities right across the UK and Ireland. Book your stay today with Jurys Inn.
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