When you think of cruises, you probably imagine spending weeks at sea on an international adventure exploring some of the world’s most popular tourist hotspots.

However, it can be just as rewarding sailing the shores of the UK to discover the delights of coastal cities closer to home. Incorporating Edinburgh, Belfast, and a swathe of iconic English ports, British Isles cruises from Southampton promise history, delicious food, nightlife, and picturesque scenery. Discover what to expect from each celebrated stop on a cruise around the United Kingdom.

4 Top Stop-Offs on a UK Cruise


When you tie up at Tilbury, follow the Thames 25 miles inland to reach the captivating city of London. England’s capital is a melting pot of awe-inspiring architecture and international cuisine and is overflowing with amazing attractions, from peaceful parks and art galleries to family-friendly museums and theatres boasting a range of world-class shows. Experience for yourself why London was crowned top travel destination in Europe in the 2022 Travellers’ Choice Awards. 


In contrast to the bustling streets of London, Scotland’s capital has a stately tranquillity that makes it a joy to explore on foot. Walk the Royal Mile from Edinburgh Castle to the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the residence of Mary Queen of Scots prior to her arrest.

Old town Edinburgh and Edinburgh castle

And take in the magnificent medieval architecture which makes Edinburgh such an attractive and notable travel destination. Sample traditional delicacies such as haggis in the local eateries and stop for a coffee in one of the cafés where J K Rowling penned the first drafts of her world-changing Harry Potter novels. 


One of the most notable aspects of Belfast is that it was the birthplace of the legendary RMS Titanic which famously never completed its transatlantic voyage from Southampton to New York City due to striking an iceberg in the North Atlantic Ocean. Today, tourists in Northern Ireland’s capital can visit the Titanic Quarter at the renovated dockyards to explore this heritage. Head a little way out of the city to experience the breath-taking Giant’s Causeway, a striking landscape steeped in myth due to its enigmatic ancient rock formations, rugged cliffs, and secluded coves.


To explore the heart of British maritime history, look no further than Liverpool. Previously England’s most important trading port, Liverpool grew to prominence during the Victorian era and earned itself the nickname ‘the New York of Europe’ by the mid-19th century. A century on, however, and the port was in sharp decline due to containerisation changing the landscape of international trade.

Tate Museum Albert Docks Liverpool UK

Although Liverpool no longer has a thriving port area, it is still a flourishing city with a rich culture. Wander the regenerated Albert Dock, taking the time to visit the Tate Museum. Head to the legendary Cavern Club and Beatles Story Museum to follow in the footsteps of the Fab Four. At night, relax with exotic food and drink and live music in the city’s swathe of restaurants and bars.