UNESCO Sites in the UK / Part two

 SUMMARY   Welcome to our UNESCO World Heritage Sites information guide in the United Kingdom! This guide serves as a comprehensive resource for travelers and heritage enthusiasts, providing valuable information to help you organize an engaging and memorable journey through these remarkable places.

Part one Part two (you’re here)

We’ve created this guide to make your journey through UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the United Kingdom as comfortable and informative as possible. Enjoy the richness and diversity of this amazing country and immerse yourself in its cultural and natural heritage!

Discover how to conveniently and efficiently reach UNESCO sites using public transportation. We also provide links to tourist resources for cities where UNESCO sites are located. This way, you can expand your journey, learn more about local culture, cuisine, and entertainment.

Great Britain

Tourist information about the country.

About London

Tourist information about the capital city.

Transportation

Plan trips across the entire country.

Cities & Regions

Tourist info about cities and regions.

All articles

Also, check out more articles about the country.

Maritime Greenwich

The Royal Observatory (map), Greenwich, is one of the most famous institutions in the district. It is known as the home of the Prime Meridian, which defines the line of 0 degrees longitude. The Old Royal Naval College (map) is a magnificent architectural complex designed by Sir Christopher Wren and Nicholas Hawksmoor.

The Cutty Sark (map) is a historic clipper ship that has been preserved and transformed into a museum. The National Maritime Museum (map) is the largest museum of its kind in the world. The Queen’s House (map) is an elegant 17th-century building designed by Inigo Jones. It houses an impressive art collection, including works by renowned painters.

Greenwich Park (map) is a scenic royal park that offers stunning views of the River Thames and the city of London. Greenwich Market (map) is a vibrant market where visitors can explore a wide range of stalls selling arts, crafts, antiques, fashion, and delicious street food.

Location & Access: Maritime Greenwich is well-connected to central London via public transportation. The district is easily accessible by train, DLR (Docklands Light Railway), and riverboat services, making it a convenient destination for tourists. Information about public transport.

Heart of Neolithic Orkney

Skara Brae (map) is a remarkably well-preserved Neolithic village that dates back over 5,000 years. Maeshowe (map) is a chambered cairn, a burial mound with a central chamber. It is famous for its Viking graffiti, as Norsemen seeking shelter during the 12th century left inscriptions on its walls. The Ring of Brodgar (map) is a circular stone circle with a central monolith, situated in a breathtaking natural landscape. The Ness of Brodgar (map) is an ongoing archaeological excavation that has uncovered a complex and significant Neolithic site.

Location & Access: Visitors can reach Orkney by ferry from the Scottish mainland or by air to Kirkwall Airport on Mainland. Once on the island, various bus and taxi services are available for transportation to the archaeological sites. Information about public transport.

Blaenavon Industrial Landscape

The Blaenavon Industrial Landscape (map) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Blaenavon, South Wales. It is an outstanding example of an industrial landscape that played a pivotal role in the Industrial Revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries.

The Big Pit (map) is a former coal mine that has been converted into a museum. The industrial landscape also includes quarries that were crucial sources of limestone and coal for the iron and steel industries. In addition to its industrial heritage, the landscape is home to the vibrant culture of the people who lived and worked in the area during the Industrial Revolution.

Location & Access: Monmouthshire in South Wales. Blaenavon is accessible by train and bus services from nearby towns and cities in South Wales. The Big Pit National Coal Museum and other industrial heritage sites in the area are within walking distance of the town center. Information about public transport.

Historic Town of St George and Related Fortifications, Bermuda

This historic town (map) and its fortifications offer a glimpse into Bermuda’s colonial history and its role in transatlantic trade during the 17th century. St. George is one of the oldest English settlements in the New World and is known for its well-preserved historic architecture and cultural heritage.

Peter’s Church (map) is one of the oldest Anglican churches in the Western Hemisphere. Fort St. Catherine (map) is one of the fortifications in the area and has a history dating back to the 17th century. St. George’s and its fortifications feature underground tunnels, defensive works, and gun emplacements that were once part of the island’s defenses.

Location & Access: The Historic Town of St. George is located on the island of Bermuda. The town is compact and easily explored on foot, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in its historic atmosphere. Information about public transport.

Derwent Valley Mills

This site represents a significant part of the Industrial Revolution’s history, as it was a pioneering center for the development of mechanized cotton spinning and the factory system. The Cromford Canal and the Cromford and High Peak Railway are notable examples of the transportation infrastructure associated with the mills.

The Derwent Valley Mills (map) are home to a collection of historic cotton mills that were among the first factories in the world. These mills, including Cromford Mill (map), are architectural and industrial marvels that showcase the innovations of Richard Arkwright, one of the key figures in the early industrial revolution. The site also includes housing and communities built for the mill workers.

Location & Access: Derbyshire, England, in the Derwent Valley. The site is well-connected by road and public transportation. Information about public transport.

Dorset and East Devon Coast

The Dorset and East Devon Coast (map), often referred to as the Jurassic Coast, is renowned for its outstanding geological significance, as it showcases a continuous record of Earth’s history spanning over 185 million years. Fossils of ancient sea creatures, dinosaurs, and prehistoric plants have been found in the region, contributing to our understanding of Earth’s past.

Durdle Door (map) is a natural limestone arch and one of the iconic landmarks along the coast. Lulworth Cove (map) is a horseshoe-shaped bay with crystal-clear waters, formed through coastal erosion. Charmouth (map) is a fossil hunting hotspot, attracting enthusiasts and researchers from around the world.

Location & Access: The region is accessible by train, bus, and car. Major towns and cities in the area include Exeter, Weymouth, and Dorchester, all of which are well-connected to the coast. Information about public transport.

New Lanark

New Lanark (map) is closely associated with the social reformer Robert Owen, who managed the cotton mill and village in the early 19th century. The cotton mill at New Lanark was one of the largest and most technologically advanced cotton mills of its era.

Owen implemented a range of progressive social and educational reforms that were ahead of their time, including improved working conditions, education for children, and community welfare programs. The village layout and design were influenced by Owen’s vision of a model industrial community where workers’ well-being was prioritized.

Location & Access: New Lanark is a historic village located in Scotland, near the town of Lanark in South Lanarkshire. Information about public transport.

Saltaire

Saltaire (map) is a Victorian-era industrial village located in West Yorkshire. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an outstanding example of a planned industrial community from the 19th century. Named after its founder, Sir Titus Salt, Saltaire is renowned for its historical significance, architectural heritage, and the legacy of social and industrial reform.

Salt’s Mill, originally a textile mill, is the centerpiece of Saltaire. It has been converted into a multi-purpose space that includes art galleries, shops, restaurants, and offices. The village is adjacent to Robert’s Park (map), a beautiful green space along the River Aire.

Location & Access: Bradford in West Yorkshire, England, approximately 4 miles (6.5 kilometers) north of Bradford city center. Saltaire is easily accessible by train from major cities like Leeds and Bradford. Information about public transport.

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

The Royal Botanic Gardens (map), commonly referred to as Kew Gardens, located in Richmond, London. It is one of the world’s most famous botanical gardens and a center for botanical research, conservation, and education.

Kew Gardens is home to an extensive and diverse collection of plants from around the world. The gardens feature various themed areas, including the Palm House (map), Princess of Wales Conservatory (map), Alpine House (map), and Temperate House (map), each housing a remarkable array of plant species. Kew’s Japanese Garden (map), known as the Chokushi-Mon, is a tranquil and beautifully designed space inspired by Japanese garden traditions.

Location & Access: Kew Gardens is easily accessible by London Underground (District Line) and Overground trains, as well as by bus. Kew Gardens station (map) is within walking distance of the gardens. Information about public transport.

Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City

Delisted 2021. This site recognizes Liverpool’s historic significance as a major maritime and commercial center during the height of the British Empire.

Albert Dock (map) is a stunning waterfront complex that houses museums, galleries, restaurants, and shops. Located within the Albert Dock, the Liverpool Maritime Museum (map) offers insights into the city’s maritime history. Tate Liverpool (map) is an art gallery that presents a diverse collection of contemporary and modern art.

The historic waterfront along the River Mersey features charming architecture, waterfront promenades, and scenic views. Liverpool Cathedral (map) is a magnificent Anglican cathedral located within the city. It is one of the largest cathedrals in the world and features stunning architecture and interior design.

Location & Access: Liverpool is well-connected by train, with direct services from major cities like London, Manchester, and Birmingham. Information about public transport.

Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape

The site features numerous remnants of the mining industry, including engine houses, chimneys, mine shafts, and other industrial structures. Botallack Mine (map) is one of the most iconic mining sites within the landscape. Perched on cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, it offers stunning views and dramatic ruins, including the iconic Crowns Engine Houses (map).

Wheal Coates (map) is another picturesque site with engine houses set against the backdrop of the rugged coastline. The Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape is situated along the stunning coastline of southwestern England, offering breathtaking vistas and opportunities for coastal walks.

Location & Access: The nearest major city is Truro (map), Cornwall, which has good transport connections. Information about public transport.

  • UNESCO website

  • Official website

  • Visit Region

  • Wikipedia info

  • Wikivoyage info

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct (map), designed by engineer Thomas Telford and completed in 1805, is one of the most famous features of the site. It is a cast-iron trough supported by 18 stone piers, soaring 126 feet (38 meters) above the River Dee.

The canal and aqueducts traverse beautiful natural surroundings, making it an ideal destination for walkers, cyclists, and those seeking outdoor recreation.

The Llangollen Canal (map), also known as the Ellesmere Canal, is part of the UNESCO site and offers scenic canal boating. It passes through picturesque landscapes, including the Dee Valley and the town of Llangollen.

Location & Access: North Wales.  Information about public transport.

The Forth Bridge

The Forth Bridge (map), also known as the Forth Rail Bridge, is an iconic engineering marvel and a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Scotland. It spans the Firth of Forth, connecting the town of South Queensferry to North Queensferry and serving as a crucial rail link between Edinburgh and Fife.

he Forth Bridge is renowned for its cantilever design, which was a pioneering engineering achievement when it was constructed in the late 19th century. The bridge’s construction used approximately 53,000 tons of steel and 6.5 million rivets. At the time of its completion in 1890, the Forth Bridge was the world’s longest cantilever bridge, with a central span of 1,710 feet (521 meters). It held this record until the early 20th century.

Location & Access: Visitors can access the Forth Bridge by train from Edinburgh and other nearby cities. South Queensferry and North Queensferry have railway stations that provide convenient access to the bridge and surrounding areas. Information about public transport.

Gorham’s Cave Complex

Gorham’s Cave Complex (map) on the eastern face of the Rock of Gibraltar. The complex consists of four main caves: Gorham’s Cave, Vanguard Cave, Hyaena Cave, and Bennett’s Cave. These caves have yielded important archaeological finds, including evidence of Neanderthal and early modern human occupation.

In addition to its archaeological importance, the complex is set against the backdrop of the stunning natural landscape of Gibraltar. Visitors can appreciate the beauty of the cliffs and coastline surrounding the caves.

Location & Access: Rock of Gibraltar, a British Overseas Territory at the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula. Visitors can reach Gibraltar by air or by land from neighboring Spain. Once in Gibraltar, the complex is accessible by road and is located within walking distance of the town center. Information about public transport.

The English Lake District

The Lake District is home to some of England’s most beautiful lakes, including Lake Windermere, Ullswater, Derwentwater, and Coniston Water. These lakes offer opportunities for boating, kayaking, swimming, and scenic cruises. The Lake District Visitor Centre at Brockhole (map) is a notable stop for information and activities. The Lake District National Park (map), established in 1951, covers a significant portion of the region.

The region is known for its rugged fells and mountains, including Scafell Pike, the highest peak in England. The Lake District is dotted with charming villages and towns, such as Ambleside (map), Keswick (map), and Grasmere (map). These settlements offer historic architecture, quaint streets, and opportunities to explore local culture and cuisine.

Location & Access: The Lake District is accessible by train, with several stations serving the region, including Windermere, Kendal, and Penrith. Information about public transport.

Jodrell Bank Observatory

Jodrell Bank Observatory (map) is one of the most iconic and significant radio astronomy observatories in the world. The observatory is known for its pioneering contributions to the field of radio astronomy and its role in advancing our understanding of the universe.

The centerpiece of Jodrell Bank Observatory is the Lovell Telescope (map), which is one of the largest and most recognizable radio telescopes globally. The observatory has a visitor center that provides educational exhibits, interactive displays, and information about the history and significance of radio astronomy.

Location & Access: Jodrell Bank Observatory is located near the village of Goostrey (map) in Cheshire, England, approximately 20 miles (32 kilometers) south of Manchester. Information about public transport.

The Great Spa Towns of Europe (UK)

Bath is one of the most famous spa towns in the UK. It is known for its Roman-built baths, Georgian architecture, and the Roman Baths complex. The city’s spa waters have been celebrated for their therapeutic properties for centuries. In 2021, Bath become part of a second UNESCO World Heritage Site, a group of spa towns across Europe known as the “Great Spas of Europe”.

+ Cheltenham (map) is a Regency-era spa town in Gloucestershire. Located in North Yorkshire, Harrogate (map) has been a popular spa town since the 18th century. Royal Leamington Spa, commonly known as Leamington Spa in Warwickshire (map). Buxton (map) is a spa town in Derbyshire, known for its Georgian and Victorian architecture. Llandrindod Wells (map) spa town is located in Powys, Wales.

Location & Access: Bath is located in Somerset, England, approximately 97 miles (156 kilometers) west of London. Bath is well-connected by train from London Paddington Station (map), and the journey takes approximately 1.5 to 2 hours. Information about public transport.

The Slate Landscape of Northwest Wales

The Slate Landscape of Northwest Wales (map) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that encompasses a network of slate quarries, industrial infrastructure, settlements, and cultural heritage sites in the northwest region of Wales. The site includes a network of historic slate quarries, each with its unique character and history.

The slate landscape is set within the stunning natural beauty of Snowdonia National Park (map). It offers opportunities for hiking, exploring, and appreciating the rugged scenery. The Slate Landscape of Northwest Wales is located in the northwest part of Wales, within Snowdonia National Park and spanning multiple towns and quarries in the Gwynedd and Conwy counties.

Location & Access: The site is accessible by train and bus, with various railway stations and bus stops serving the region. The towns of *Blaenau Ffestiniog (map) and Bethesda (map) are central to the site and can be reached by rail and road connections. Information about public transport.

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