It was a historical quirk that took the city – and nation – by surprise. When it comes to UK destinations, Leicester is not typically at the forefront of people’s minds. Nonetheless, its unlikely royal legacy offered a glimpse into the city’s rich heritage that even extends to it being claimed as the birthplace of British tourism. In 1841, Thomas Cook, founder of the famous travel agency, chartered a train to carry people from Leicester to Loughborough. It was an epochal moment for a nascent industry.
Today, Leicester remains an understated city, albeit one that is lent a degree of youthful vigour by its university population. Those who visit tend to lap up its abundance of countryside – the county of Leicestershire being one of Britain’s most verdant. City attractions are plentiful, too, and below we pick out some of the best.
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