The Ultimate Guide to the Beer Garden Capitals of the UK

Two years on from our previous “Beer Garden Capitals of the UK” study, it's clear that the pub scene across Britain is ever-changing. With new drinking spots sprouting up across the nation, and the cost of a pint continuing its upward march, we wanted to see how the beer garden landscape has changed in 2024.


Our study has scanned locations across the UK, focusing on the number of pubs and bars with outdoor spaces and beer gardens. Additionally, we've analysed weather data from the Met Office, which has provided insights into average temperatures, sunshine hours, and rainfall levels in these cities. We scored 31 cities based on these factors, with a maximum achievable score of 67. From these scores, we created a ranking from highest to lowest to determine which cities offered the best conditions for a trip to the beer garden. Our data has delved into the average cost of a pint in each location – revealing the priciest pints, and which cities can offer you a beer on a budget.

The Top 10 Beer Garden Capitals – Score /67

Whilst our 2022 study saw Norwich winning the “Beer Garden Capital” crown, it seems our research has found some new contenders for the 2024 title. And despite Norwich’s 2022 glory, it appears the city has fallen out of the top 10 altogether!


1. Brighton - 62

2. Oxford - 60

3. Southampton - 57

4. Milton Keynes - 53

5. Peterborough - 52

6. Bristol - 48

7. York - 45

8. Plymouth - 44

9. Bradford - 43

10. Manchester - 42


1. Brighton

The coastal city of Brighton claims the top spot with an impressive score of 62 out of 67 – this is up from third place in our 2022 study. The city boasts a whopping 99 beer gardens, which translates to 7 beer gardens per 10,000 residents. If you’re looking for the ultimate beer garden experience, Brighton should be at the top of your list.


The BN1 and BN2 post codes are the places you’ll want to be for outdoor drinking, home to the likes of the Mesmerist and Brighton Rocks – both of which have generous outdoor patio heating to ensure the fun times continue when the sun goes down.  

2. Oxford

Not far behind, Oxford scores 60 points, making it a prime destination for beer lovers. With venues such as The Bear Inn and Turf Tavern that boast toasty outdoor heating, combined with the city’s 633 hours of summer sunshine on average, Oxford certainly “Fosters” the right atmosphere for those who fancy a pint in the warmth.

3. Southampton

In third place, Southampton scores a solid 57 with its lively SO14 and SO15 post codes. The city offers 86 beer gardens, equating to 3 beer gardens per 10,000 residents, ensuring you have plenty of options to enjoy a cold one. And for those who are in the mood to cosy up underneath a patio heater in a Southampton beer garden, The Shooting Star and The Gordon Arms have got your back!

4. Milton Keynes

Milton Keynes lands in fourth with a commendable score of 53. It offers 62 vibrant beer gardens – that’s 3 per 10,000 residents, making it a fantastic place to soak up the summer sun and enjoy a drink. The MK9 and MK14 post codes are where you’ll find a whole host of vibrant pubs and bars, such as The Nags Head, which has the option of outdoor heating for when the classic chilly UK weather strikes.

5. Peterborough

With a commendable score of 52, Peterborough is the fifth city in the list of “Beer Garden Capitals”. East Anglia, where Peterborough is located, enjoys the least amount of summer rainfall, making it an ideal spot for an outdoor pint without the worry of rain. Head to the PE1 or PE2 areas if you’re looking for a good drinking venue. And if outdoor heating is essential to your Peterborough pub trip, The Ostrich Inn and The Blue Bell offer a warming beer garden equipped with patio heating.

The cities of Bristol (48), York (45), Plymouth (44), Bradford (43), and Manchester (42) complete our top ten list, each offering a variety of fantastic beer garden qualities, according to our data.

Top 10 Worst Cities for Beer Gardens – Score /67

1. Belfast - 7

2. Glasgow - 13

3. Aberdeen - 15

4. Swansea - 17

5. Edinburgh - 21

6. Newcastle - 21

7. Dundee - 22

8. Newport - 23

9. Liverpool - 24

10. Kingston Upon Hull - 27


1. Belfast

Unfortunately for Northern Irish beer enthusiasts, Belfast ranks as the worst city for beer gardens with a low score of 7 out of 67. With Northern Ireland seeing the least amount of summer sunshine (439 hours) and the most rainfall (384 hours), alongside the cities lack of notable outdoor drinking spaces, Belfast sits firmly as the top of the “cities to avoid” list when it comes to beer gardens.

2. Glasgow & Aberdeen 

Scottish cities Glasgow and Aberdeen also make the top 10 worst locations for a trip to the beer garden, scoring 13 and 15 out of 67 respectively. When looking at our research, it appears that Scotland’s relatively low 487 hours of summer sunshine doesn’t help their beer garden appeal – pushing these Northern cities down the list.

3. Swansea

Swansea ranks fourth from the bottom with a score of 17. With a mere 12 beer gardens to choose from (less than 1 per 10,000 residents), it’s clear that beer gardens aren’t the city's strong suit. Not only this, but the Welsh summer climate may “rain on your parade” when out for a pint, as the country has an average summer rainfall of 343 hours!

4 & 5. Edinburgh & Newcastle

Both scoring 21, Edinburgh and Newcastle jointly occupy the fifth spot among the worst cities for beer gardens. Despite Newcastle’s reputation as a bustling party city, it has less than 1 beer garden per capita. Edinburgh fares slightly better at 2 beer gardens per capita, but this still isn’t enough to earn a spot on the “Beer Garden Capitals” list.

Dundee (22), Newport (23), Liverpool (24), and Kingston Upon Hull (27) all follow suit, all of which offer a less than “Stella” beer garden experience, according to our findings.

Cost of A Pint in the UK

After delving into the best and worst cities for beer gardens, the question arises, how much will a pint set you back in these cities?

With the average cost of a pint in the UK now at £5.171, up 93p since 20222, we sought to seek out which locations are a steal – with “pint-sized” prices – and which might make you think twice before ordering that second round.

Hull has claimed the title as the cheapest pint in the UK at just £3.75.

Where can you find the cheapest pint in the UK?

Hull has claimed the title as the cheapest pint in the UK at just £3.75. This follows its runner-up spot in our 2022 study, when a pint only cost £3.10. But before you rush over, remember that Hull also made our top 10 worst cities for beer gardens, scoring only 27 overall. With just 2 beer gardens per 10,000 residents, your options might be limited. Still, your wallet will thank you!

And with pints costing £3.80 on average, Coventry is a close second. This city not only offers affordable beer but also boasts a generous 551 hours of summer sunshine. Several cities tie for third place with pints at £4.00: Aberdeen, Stoke-on-Trent, Southampton, Dundee, Bradford, Swansea, Newport, and Sheffield – these cities are perfect for those seeking budget-friendly beers. Although, prepare for a bit of a chill if you’re in Scotland, as our research revealed average summer temperatures hover around 8 degrees. Bundle up!

Top 10 Cities with the Cheapest Pints:

1. Kingston Upon Hull: £3.75

2. Coventry: £3.80

3. Aberdeen: £4.00

4. Stoke-on-Trent: £4.00

5. Southampton: £4.00

6. Dundee: £4.00

7. Bradford: £4.00

8. Swansea: £4.00

9. Newport: £4.00

10. Sheffield: £4.00

The Pricier Pints

On the pricier side, London unsurprisingly leads the pack with the most expensive pints, averaging a whopping £6.50 - this has increased a whole £1 since the 2022 study. Further to this, a 2023 report3 highlighted that pint prices in London have doubled over the past 15 years. Therefore, if you're planning a night out in the capital, your wallet might feel the pinch.


Brighton & Hove, our top “beer garden capital” also ranks high for pint prices, averaging at £6.00. While you can enjoy a drink in one of its many beer gardens, be prepared to pay a premium for that seaside sunshine.


A pint will set you back around £5.50 in Belfast, making this city the third priciest in the UK. While the Northern Ireland capital might not be a top contender for beer gardens, it’s certainly high up the list for the priciest cold ones.


Oxford follows with pints priced at £5.45. Known for its prestigious university, the city’s pint prices are equally highbrow.


In York, our research reveals people pay around £5.40 for a pint, on average. While the city has a pub for every day of the year (more than 3654), the cost of a drink might have you reconsidering a pub crawl around this city.

Top 10 Cities with the Most Expensive Pints:

1. London: £6.50

2. Brighton & Hove: £6.00

3. Belfast: £5.50

4. Oxford: £5.45

5. York: £5.40

6. Edinburgh: £5.00

7. Bristol: £5.00

8. Manchester: £5.00

9. Liverpool: £4.83

10. Norwich: £4.50

Elevating your Outdoor Space with Electric Patio Heaters

Our findings have highlighted some interesting changes in the beer garden landscape across the UK. Cities like Brighton have knocked Norwich out of the top spot and surged to the top with their impressive beer garden offerings, while others like Belfast and Glasgow continue to struggle.


Whether you're seeking a budget-friendly pint or craving the ambiance of a premium beer garden, we hope that our study can provide some guidance to choosing your perfect spot!


And if you’re looking to add a bit of beer garden flare to your home or commercial venue, check out our range of patio heaters. Supplying lasting warmth whatever the weather, these outdoor heaters are there to help you create the perfect alfresco atmosphere all year round. Efficeint, DIY-friendly and available in a range of stylish design, there's a patio heater to suit every garden. 

Find the right patio heater for your outdoor space with our helpful video guide >

Key learnings

✓ Brighton claims the top spot as the best beer garden city in the UK, with 99 beer gardens leaving you spoilt for choice. 

✓ Belfast is the worst city for beer gardens, with the highest percentage of rainfall, least amount of sunshine and lowest number of beer gardens. 

✓ As of 2024, the average cost for a pint is £5.17, up by 93p since our last study in 2022. 

✓ Hull offers the cheapest pint at just £3.75 whereas London unsurprisingly has the most expensive at £6.50. 

✓ Electric patio heaters help to improve any outdoor space, keeping you warm while you enjoy your pint outside. 

Methodology & Sources

The data on UK regional population enabled us to calculate how many beer gardens there were per 10,000 people. We also found out the average cost of a pint in each city. 


Met Office data has allowed us to collate insights into temperatures, sunshine, and rainfall levels in the major cities analysed. 


Using all the data above, we have created a ranking system to find the UK's "beer garden capital." 

Data Sources 



Additional Sources



1The average price of a pint in the UK and around the world (

3Pint in London now costs £9 - The Drinks Business

4How Many Bars And Pubs York? -

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As Content Manager, Emily keeps her finger on the pulse, staying up to date with current trends and the latest electric heating news. With a background in creative writing, she’s always looking for new and exciting ways to deliver compelling insights into some of the hottest topics in the industry. 

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