The Public Loo Map

By Brenna

5th Jul 2021

7 mins read

Company News

When nature calls, you've got to answer. Our bladders don't care where we are or what we're up to - when the pressure is on, we're left with only one option.

The Public Loo Map

But where can you go when you’ve got to go?

We've taken a look at where in the world has the best (and worst) public toilets, based on their availability, how hygienic they are, how much they cost and more.

Unlike our stylish toilet units, not all of them are particularly pretty.

The cleanest toilets in the world

Everyone knows what goes on in a toilet, but that doesn’t mean we want to see it. In fact, a messy loo is often enough to make you think you don’t actually need to go at all.

For people in Singapore, that’s never a problem. Their public toilets receive an average rating of 4.04 stars out of five for their cleanliness (yes, toilets are rated), with staff on hand to keep them looking shiny and fresh.

Many toilets here bring elements of nature inside, with plants helping you relax as you do your business. They also feature automatic technology, meaning if you ever forget to flush, the toilet will do it for you.

Germany isn’t far behind. In the city of Hamburg, public toilets get a rating of 3.94 stars, with their designs being just as impressive as the streets around them. It’s common in Germany to spend up to a Euro in order to use the facilities, with the majority of this money going towards the toilets’ upkeep.

Completing the cleanest top three is a country known for its toilet technology: Japan. Their toilets are so well looked after that they’ve even introduced transparent cubicles to let you see how clean they are before you step inside.

Don’t worry though - before you use their 3.69 star rated facilities the cubicle will become opaque, stopping your private time from becoming a tourist attraction.

Dirty business - France’s facilities fall flat

If you’re bursting in Marseille, you might want to hold on a little longer. The French city’s public toilets only score 2.8 stars for cleanliness, while many don’t even have toilet seats, this is done to prevent the build-up of bacteria.

Venice comes in second place. The city famed for its canals isn’t as well known for its other waterways, scoring only 2.93 stars for its dirty loos.

Another classic European city finishes off the bottom three for cleanliness, this time Barcelona. Scoring only 3.05 stars, the Spanish city can consider itself averagely hygienic, which isn’t something you really want a toilet to be described as.

North Carolina has the most unhygienic restrooms

With a population of over 328 million people, there’s no surprise there’s an abundance of public toilets in each state across the United States. Unfortunately, not all of those are celebrated for their cleanliness - Charlotte in North Carolina has the worst rated public restrooms out of almost all 50 states.

With an average rating 2.81, you might want to cross it off your road trip bucket list to make a stop there.

However, coming in top, with almost a full 5 star rating is Nashville in Tennessee with 4.7, so now Tennesseans can pride themselves on their love for country music as well as their immaculate public toilets.

The UK's Most Hygienic Loos

Coming in joint second place is Virginia Beach in Virginia and Omaha in Nebraska with an almost perfect score of 4.3.

Britain’s top toilets - where in the UK is best for your business?

If you’ve ever needed a wee when out and about in the UK, you’ll know your luck isn’t always in. From permanently closed public toilets to those that ought to be closed for health and safety reasons, it isn’t always easy to find somewhere you feel safe and comfortable enough to use.

The UK's Most Hygienic Loos

In some cities, you’ll do well to find a toilet at all, while in others they’re available in abundance.

We’ve tracked them all down so that the next time you’re out, you’ll know just where to go.

London has more loos than any other city

There are 1,463 public toilets in London, which is no surprise considering how many people live, work and visit there every day. The capital is home to some of the country’s most popular tourist attractions, all of which need toilets to keep their customers comfortable, while the millions of city workers also need places to stop on their daily commutes.

In second place, although some way back, is York. Home to 451 public toilets, things have come a long way since the Vikings of Jorvik peed in pots.

Chester is another historic city keeping up to date with modern bodily requirements. They have 397 public toilets on offer, making the Welsh border one of the perfect places to try out their public toilets.

At the other end of the spectrum, you don’t want to be caught short if you’re in Southampton or Peterborough. You’ll only find 10 public toilets there, meaning you better go before you leave home or risk a very uncomfortable day out.

The UK cities with the best public toilets

The UK's Most Hygienic Loos

99% of Edinburgh's toilets are free to use

If you’re caught short in Edinburgh, don’t panic. You’ll not need to spend a penny to, well, spend a penny in the Scottish capital, with 102 of their 103 public toilets free to use.

The same is true for the bladders and bowels of Belfast. There are only 42 public toilets in the Northern Irish city, but 39 of them are free to use which makes it easy if you’re not carrying change.

Stirling, another Scottish city, isn’t far behind. They also have 39 free toilets for public use, with only four charging for nature’s call.

For a more expensive toilet experience, look no further than Portsmouth. Only 11 of their 52 public loos are free to use, even though they only score 3.43 stars for their hygiene. That sounds like money flushed down the drain to us.

Leeds's loos are the cleanest of the lot

When it comes to toilet tidiness, Leeds is the runaway winner. Their 55 public toilets score an average of 4.66 stars for hygiene, beating off cubicle competition from Dundee (4.57), Liverpool (4.57) and Lichfield (4.5).

Sadly, shiny toilets can’t be found everywhere you’ll need a wee. Careful not to drink too much liquid in Peterborough, where their toilets only manage 2.15 stars, or Winchester where it’s not much better at 2.18.

Next time you use the loo when you’re out and about, be sure to rate it. You never know who you might be saving from a scary experience.

Our top public toilet tips

Next time you need the toilet when out and about, follow our handy toilet tips to make sure you do it safely and hygienically.

1. Go armed with wipes.

You’ll need to touch all kinds of surfaces in public toilets, which could all feature some potentially dangerous germs. Take hand wipes out with you so you never have to touch the taps, flush or doors directly.

2. Don’t hang around.

Get in, do your thing, wash your hands and get out. The longer you’re in the loo, the more at risk you are of catching something nasty.

3. Mask up.

Did you know particles from the toilet can spray up to three feet in the air when you flush? Keep your face mask on at all times to stop you from breathing them in.

4. Wash your hands.

Only 65% of women and 31% of men wash their hands after using the toilet. Don’t be one of those who don’t. Wash your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds to rid them of any bacteria.

5. Stay off your phone.

Weeing doesn’t take long. Don’t be tempted to go on your phone while you do it. Any germs present will just end up on your screen.

Prefer to keep your toilet trips private?

If you’d rather your toilet was in your bathroom and not in a transparent cubicle, our collection of stylish toilets will make every trip an experience. With a huge selection of traditional, minimalist and modern toilets available, you’re sure to find something both you and your bladder love.


UK cities were ranked on their toilets by collecting data from the UK toilet map (link shown above). We collected data on the facilities each toilet had (parking, male, female etc.) the count of each facility was then converted to % by looking at how many toilets were in each city and then calculating the % of those toilets that had each type of facility.

These percentages were then used to score the city out of 100, therefore allowing us to rank each city based on their toilets. The same methodology was used for Australia, the only difference was the data source for the original metrics, and that it is based on regions rather than cities.

Brenna blog author


Brenna is one of our dedicated bathroom bloggers here at VP HQ. Look out for her posts on all the latest interiors trends, as well as expert how-tos on all manner of bathroom DIY jobs.

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