Top 10 Largest Cities in United Kingdom

By | March 8, 2023

Great Britain is an island located between the Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea. It consists of three main areas: England (south), Scotland (north) and Wales (west). Together with Northern Ireland, which is located on the northeastern part of the western island of Ireland, they form the United Kingdom. There are approximately 64 million people living in the United Kingdom. A large majority of the inhabitants live in England, more than 53 million. Most of the major cities are also located here. This is the top 10 list of the largest UK cities as measured by population. Check handbagpicks for list of the 10 largest theme parks in Europe.

10. Leicester

With 330,000 inhabitants, Leicester is number 10 on this list. The historic city is located in central England in the East Midlands region on the River Soar. It borders the National Forest park. Most people know the name Leicester from the football world. The club Leicester City surprised friend and foe in 2016 by winning the Premier League.


Bristol has over 410,000 inhabitants. The city is located on the west coast of England, at the mouth of the Lower Avon River. Bristol is an important international port city. A lot of wine is exported from the port. The city is also known for its aircraft industry. The Bristol Airplane Company built the very famous Concorde here. In addition, Bristol has a major manufacturer of hot air balloons and glass. Bristol has been designated an administrative county, which is a unique status in England. There is a well-known university in the old center of the city. Although Bristol suffered in the Second World War, there is not much to see of it now.

8. Leeds

Leeds is located in Northern England, a city with over 440,000 inhabitants. Leeds is located on the River Aire in the Yorkshire region. In the distant past, Leeds was known for its woolen industry. Now it is an important center of trade and higher education. The famous University of Leeds is located in the center of the city. Together with Bradford to the west, Leeds has an airport: Leeds Bradford International Airport.


More than 452,000 people live in Manchester. The city, located in the northwest of England, is known for its well-known two football clubs: Manchester United and Manchester City FC. Manchester is also a textile city. During the Second World War, Manchester was hit hard by bombs, which killed many people and destroyed much of the historic city center, including the famous Manchester Cathedral. It took 20 years to restore it to its former glory. Manchester was also hit by attacks by Irish Republicans. A well-known attack was the attack in June 1996 near a department store, in which many people were injured. Again, the city suffered a lot of damage. Despite this, Manchester still has many beautiful historic buildings. There are also many well-known pop bands from Manchester,


Liverpool has over 468,000 inhabitants and is located in the northwest of England. The town borders the River Mersey. In addition to being a city, it is also a district of the county of Merseyside. Historically, Liverpool has been an important port city. It was known for trading to Ireland, mainland Europe and the Caribbean. A lot of transatlantic slave trade also took place here. The city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with the part of Liverpool surrounding the old harbor area. Now Liverpool is much more of a tourist city. This has mainly come about because the well-known Merseybeat bands The Beatles and Gerry & the Pacemakers are from here. Liverpool is also known for two important football clubs, both of which play in the English Premier League. These are Everton FC and Liverpool FC. Since 2008, Liverpool has been named the European Capital of Culture.


Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and has over 477,000 inhabitants. The city is located on the east coast of Scotland. Here is the seat of the Scottish Parliament. Although Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland, it is not the largest city in the country, which is Glasgow (number 3 on this list). Edinburgh has many historical attractions, but is most famous for Edinburgh Castle, a castle that is located on a volcanic rock. Cruise ships dock in Edinburgh harbour. A well-known tourist attraction is the international Edinburgh festival, which takes place every year in the summer. Various music, dance, opera and theater performances by world-famous artists and ensembles are shown here. Also, a well-known military music parade is held in Edinburgh every August. Around New Year’s Eve there is another big party in the city, for no less than four days. Then the Hogmanay festival takes place with many concerts and of course also grand fireworks.


More than 555,000 people live in Sheffield. The city is named after the river that runs through the city, namely the Sheaf. Sheffield is located in the middle of England, a little north. Sheffield has traditionally been known for its steel production. Now it is an important service center with a number of banks. Sheffield occupies the valley of the River Don and several tributaries. It is striking that Sheffield has a lot of nature, 61% of the city. One third of the city is in a National Park, the Peak District National Park. In addition, Sheffield has more than 250 forests, parks and gardens with approximately 2 million trees. This makes it the city with the most trees per inhabitant.



Scotland’s largest city, Glasgow, has a population of over 578,000. This city is one of the most important commercial and industrial cities. A large-scale dredging took place in the port of Glasgow, which means that large ships can now also enter the port. Glasgow is not a historic city, it only has a few old buildings. This is because the city largely dates from the last two decades. The city of Glasgow is frequented by tourists who want to explore the west of Scotland. Iron ore and coal mining takes place in the vicinity of Glasgow, which contributes to the economic prosperity of the city.



More than 1 million inhabitants live in Birmingham. This ensures that Birmingham is number 2 of this top 10. In addition to being a city, Birmingham is also a district, which is located in the English county of the West Midlands, in the middle of England. Birmingham has traditionally been the center of the British metal industry. Now the city is the center of the service industry. Many high-rise offices protrude above the city. Birmingham is also known as ‘Brum’. This name is derived from the old name Brummagem and from the inhabitants, who are called ‘Brummies’. Many tourists visit the city every year. It is mainly known as a good shopping city. But there is also plenty to do in the field of culture and sport, such as football (Aston Villa and Birmingham City), athletics (European championships) and motorsport (Birmingham grand prix).

1. London


More than 7.5 million inhabitants live in the capital of England, London. The city is located in the southeast of the country and is one of the four World Cities (alongside Paris, Tokyo and New York). The city has this status because it is very rich in politics, economy and culture. London boasts four UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the famous Tower of London and the Palace of Westminster. In addition, it has many other historic buildings, squares, parks, museums and shopping streets. All this makes the city a very popular place for tourists.