The stunning coastline and quaint towns and villages of Cornwall stole the top spot or 2024 (Image: Getty Images)

A popular seaside destination has stolen the crown as the UK’s “top destination” for holidays in 2024. Last year, Yorkshire was named the top location for UK holidaymakers, with Cornwall coming in second place. However, this year, Cornwall has pipped Yorkshire to the post and stolen the top spot.

Furthermore, Yorkshire has been forced down in the rankings, with the Scottish Highlands and Devon both beating the northern country in second and third place respectively.

The findings were based on a poll of 2,000 travellers by holiday rental agency Sykes Holiday Cottages, who offer self-catering breaks across all of the top-rated hotspots, as well as some off-the-beaten-track holiday locations.


It’s perhaps rather unsurprising that Cornwall has taken the crown in this year’s ranking given its popularity with tourists. In 2023, even though tourist figures declined by approximately 16 percent compared with the previous year, the southwestern destination still welcomed more than four million tourists.

Based on data from Statista, it was the British locality which received the highest annual average spend of domestic holiday tourists from Great Britain between April 2021 and March 2023.

The annual average expenditure by domestic holiday tourists in Cornwall was estimated at £997 million during the analysed time period. This was the highest among England’s local authorities by a significant margin, even beating Westminster.

But though a holiday to Cornwall can be expensive, particularly if you’re after a luxury stay, there are some budget-friendly options available too.

A self-catering stay can be one of the cheapest ways to holiday, and just a quick search on Sykes Holiday Cottages website shows that a couple can rent a week in a cabin for just £22 per person a night. At the time of writing, Captain’s Cabin in the seaside villages of Mevagissey is available to rent for seven nights for £311.

Cornwall beach

Cornwall has stolen the crown from Yorkshire as the top destination for 2024 according to Sykes (Image: Getty Images)

If something a little more opulent is on your mind, Salt House in St Ives has been awarded a five-star rating by the tourist board.

This five-bedroom property sleeps up to 10 guests and has electric vehicle charging, plus incredible views over the waterfront. Former guest Ann said the property “went beyond our expectations”.

But, a stay here won’t come cheap, with current average pricing sitting at £2,762 for seven nights.

Scottish Highlands

The Scottish Highlands came in second in this year’s poll, suggesting that tourism figures could be set to rise even further in this stunningly remote part of the country.

The rugged mountain region encompasses northwest Scotland, with the famous Loch Ness at its centre. The Highlands were also previously named as one of National Geographic’s “Best of the World” destinations for 2023.

View across the Scottish Highlands

The Scottish Highlands is the perfect escape into nature (Image: Getty Images)

The area is perfect for those who want to experience a taste of nature, home to the beautiful Cairngorms National Park, plenty of iconic castles on the Isle of Skye and even the chance to spot dolphins frolicking off the moray Speyside Coast.

One of Sykes’ top-rated holiday rentals in the highlands is Island View House, nestled in Glencoe offering breathtaking views of the surrounding nature. Get cosy in the hot tub no matter what the weather and gaze out at the mountain vistas.


Back down to the southwest of the UK, where Devon took the third place spot in this year’s top destination ranking.

A stunning mixture of sandy beaches, fossil cliffs, medieval towns and moorland national parks, there really is something for everyone to enjoy in Devon. The historic city of Exeter offers plenty of retail and dining to enjoy, while those hoping to explore the rugged Moors need only hop in the car and take the short journey to the wild landscapes of Exmoor and Dartmoor.

Devon coastline

Whether you want countryside, beautiful beaches or historic cities, Devon has it all (Image: Getty Images)

The Jurassic Coast is arguably one of the prettiest destinations in Devon, home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Think dramatic cliffs and stunning views over turquoise water, with plenty of quaint towns and villages along the way – it’s a great option for walkers.

If you’re looking to feel secluded in nature, the treehouse-style Treetops in Woody Bay, Devon has been ranked five stars by Sykes Holiday Cottages guests.

Full list of “top destinations” for 2024

Sykes Holiday Cottages ranked ten “top destinations” for 2024, including:

1. Cornwall
2. Scottish Highlands
3. Devon
4. Yorkshire
5. Isle of Wight
6. Scottish Borders
7. Cumbria
8. Northumberland
9. North Wales
10. Dorset