Weekends and Short Breaks 2019
Sometimes you just need to get away from it all, and weekend breaks are a fantastic option for anyone looking to escape the humdrum of daily life and soak up some culture and sun. Often a short break can be a cheap holiday, offering you the chance to discover a new place whilst sticking to your budget. Quick trips away are also a great choice for a last minute holiday.
For short weekend breaks, Europe is an obvious choice. Anyone looking to enjoy a city escape that doesn't eat up too many holiday days is spoilt for choice on our very own continent. Barcelona, Rome, Venice and Lisbon are just a few of the phenomenal city breaks available. With many of the European urban hubs nestled on the coastline, Europe is a great place to combine cosmopolitan culture with toes in the sand.
You don’t have to stay within European borders for a fantastic weekend in the city. Marrakech is only 4 hours away, offering a truly exotic urban experience without the jetlag. Or, for the ultimate in metropolitan luxury and class, you can’t do better than a trip to Dubai with its modern architectural glamour and golden sands.
With great flight deals from all the major airports, including Gatwick, Stansted, Heathrow and Manchester airport, it’s easy to book yourself a cheap city break deal. Whether you go for a week or a weekend, city escapes are so in fashion for 2019.
Top City Breaks Destinations
Struggling to choose from our wide range of city breaks? Get some inspiration from our top city breaks destinations and find the perfect weekend away that you've been looking for.
Cheap City Breaks
When you really need some stimulation, excitement, and a change of scenery but your bank account isn’t looking all that happy, a cheap city break is the perfect solution. With some fantastic metropolitan destinations in Europe, and amazing offers on hotels and flights, an affordable city break will have you exploring exciting destinations at budget prices.
Last Minute City Breaks
Sometimes life is best lived spontaneously, and a last minute city break holiday is about as spontaneous as it gets. With some fantastic deals available on top hotels, there is every reason to indulge your flight of fancy and book yourself an urban escape today!
Most popular Budapest, Barcelona, Krakow, Amsterdam, Venice, Rome, Lisbon, Warsaw, Reykjavik, Dubrovnik, Paris hotels
Fragrance ST Peter Hotel
Corendon City Hotel Amsterdam
Antony Palace Marcon
Venice, Venetian Riviera
Westcord Fashion Hotel Amsterdam
The K Boutique Hotel
Barcelona, Costa Brava
At a glance
- Time Zone: GMT +
- Average flight time: 2h 30m
When to go
(°C) Avg. High Temp
Why go on a city break?
Add a dose of adventure and peak your interest by exploring somewhere new. A city break is perhaps the best way you can do that. But, there are many reasons as to why you should go on a city break including the following:
- It’s a practical choice - City breaks often provide a great alternative to longer duration holidays. If you’ve only got a short period off or want to make the most of a long weekend, a city break destination is the best way to make the most of it.
- They can give you a break from the beach - Some of the time, a typical city break destination doesn’t just include the hustle and bustle of the city, but you can enjoy the coast too. Barcelona in particular is a popular destination for an easy blend of city and coast, but why not try Nice and Dubrovnik?
- Treat your partner to a romantic getaway - City breaks have fast become one of the finest romantic gestures for couples. Whether you’re celebrating an anniversary, any other special occasion or just fancy a quick break away from it all with your loved one, there’s no better plan than a weekend break abroad. Take a short trip to one of Europe’s typical romantic cities like Paris, Rome or Venice.
- Discover a new city – When it comes to Europe there are plenty of cities to visit. So, there’s no surprise that European city breaks are one of our most popular choices. Whether your interests lie in architecture, history or culture, there’s no better way to experience these elements than to head to a new city and discover its true character. Explore Berlin, Budapest and Prague. Or for destinations a bit further afield, try Dubai and New York.
- They can be cheap – One of the most important factors for many is cost. Luckily, with short breaks, especially those closer to home, they can be cheap and cost effective. With cheap flights, accommodation and the use of transport around the city, most city breaks can be budget friendly as well as eye-opening.
What to do on a city break
The truth is that there are plenty of things to do on a city break, it just all depends on your own likes and interests. It may also depend on the time of year you’re visiting your chosen city. Some European cities are known for their Christmas markets for instance, so that could be something to put on your itinerary.
- Visit historical sites – Depending on your destination, it may be brimming with loads of reminders from the past. If you’re a history buff and enjoy exploring these kinds of sites, there are plenty of history-filled city breaks to embark on.
- Admire the sights – One of the main activities for a short break has to be sightseeing. There is always something to discover. From architecture to cultural sights, it definitely is a breath-taking experience.
- Explore museums – Part of going on your city break might be learning even more about the place. One of the best ways to do that, is by visiting museums which peak your interest. They might highlight the local art, the city’s history or cultural influences.
- Sample the local cuisine – Some travellers base their holidays on food and that includes city breaks. If you’re open to trying new dishes and local delicacies, then finding top and popular restaurants in your destination is definitely the best way around it. You might also want to check if there are any food fairs or festivals happening during your travel dates.
- Check out the nightlife – You might be shattered once the day comes to an end, but for many, a part of their city break experience is sampling the nightlife. In some locations, the nightlife might be so unique that it is worth having a night out on the town. Choose from bars and nightclubs to make the most of the night!
City breaks travel hacks
What’s better than a city break? A cheap one! There are plenty of travel hacks to keep in mind when travelling to your destination, all which will help keep costs low. Once you’ve bagged yourself a great deal on flights and accommodation, next, it’s all about staying on budget during your time away. With the following suggestions you’ll be able to have a cheap city break and have tons of fun at the same time:
- Transport – It might be a bit overwhelming at first to use public transport in a foreign city, but it will work out a lot cheaper than using taxis to get around. Download a travel app before you reach your destination, which will surely help you map out your journeys around the city. Moreover, make sure you get some help (if needed) to find the best deal on travelcards for your stay.
- Book attractions beforehand – Sometimes is might be cheaper or more convenient to buy tickets for tourist attractions beforehand. It’ll save you from queues and if you’re lucky you might get a special offer or discounts. You may even find that, if you book a package of various attractions, you might be able to get a free visit somewhere or a combined offer.
- Eat as the locals do – As you can imagine, restaurants popular with tourists inflate their prices. Whether it’s down to its location in the bustling centre, its amazing views overlooking the sea or its celebrity chefs, eating out on a city break can be expensive. So, step out and look for hidden gems around the city. Eat in small, local restaurants or ask a local for the top spots to eat. You’ll end up getting real traditional dishes and paying less money for them.
- Look for a last minute deal – If you’re looking for a cheap city break, one of your best bets is looking for a last minute deal. When it gets closer to your departure date, you may notice that fares begin to drop, so you may be able to close in on a bargain when it comes to flights and accommodation.
How to plan your city break
Once you’re set on booking your short break away, it all comes down to planning it. Luckily enough, planning a city break has never been easier and we have loads of ways of helping you out:
- Use our smart search function - You don’t have to search for a particular city if you don’t know where you want to go as yet. In addition, you can find a range of flights and hotels to suit you. So, whether a plush, luxury hotel is appealing, or a basic apartment is more convenient, you can browse our range of hotels until something catches your eye.
- Choose the duration – When it comes to weekend breaks, you’re preferably looking for something short and sweet. Booking with us means you can choose from 2 night and 3 night stays, or even longer.
- Use our temperature graph - All of our destinations include a temperature graph informing you of the monthly weather. So, if you’re looking for somewhere that’s warm in October, for instance, you can easily find out.
- Create a daily itinerary – Although short breaks abroad are continuously growing in popularity, it’s still not a long time to thoroughly explore a city. Once you arrive, you may have to get straight into doing all the things you have planned. In order to make that easier, creating an itinerary of what you wish to do on a day to day basis is ideal. You may want to partner up sights/activities which are close to each other, so you don’t have to spend the majority of your day travelling around the city.
- Plot your transport routes – When you do have to travel the city, the easiest way to get around would be to use the city’s public transport system. Not only will it be quick and easy but usually cheaper than other options too. For example, grab a map outlining the city’s metro/train line and plot the stations you’ll need to get to in order to see the sights you’re interested in.
How to stay safe on a city break
Safety is often one of the key concerns for many travellers. There is always an element of risk wherever you go. So, when embarking on a weekend break, it’s important that you take the normal precautions when travelling around. Once you’re aware of the risks and keep your wits about you, there’s really no reason to worry. But, if you’re unsure on what measures you should take, we’ve got some suggestions:
- Check out local laws and customs – When in a different country, you don’t want to offend anyone or break the law. Truth is, sometimes we might end up in the wrong even when we don’t realise. Therefore, it is always handy to research local laws and customs so you’re aware of any unknown practices and avoid any surprises. Check the government travel advice website before travel for updated information about your destination.
- Keep your bags secure – Cities are often subject to pickpocketing among other minor crimes, so make sure you don’t leave your bags lying around and keep them on your person.
- Never carry large amounts of cash – When we go on holiday, we often take out a lot of cash to keep us covered. However, it is best to keep in mind that you should just carry around an amount that you need and leave the rest for safe keeping. Whether that means locking it away in the hotel’s safe or in your suitcase. On the other hand, you can get a currency card to use during your short break.
- Transport – Sometimes it is better to take transport rather than walk alone, especially at night time. But, if that’s the case and you end up taking a taxi, make sure it is a licensed vehicle.
- Travel insurance – Make sure you’re covered before you leave for your city break. You never know what can happen during your trip, so having travel insurance will put your mind at ease.
What are the best city breaks?
Spoilt for choice? There are plenty of different destinations to choose from. Depending on what you’re looking to get out of your short break away, you may be able to narrow down your choices and find something that you’re totally set on.
If you prefer to have the best of both worlds, visit Barcelona or Dubrovnik to make the most of the sea and city. If you consider yourself to be a culture vulture, perhaps Amsterdam, Budapest or Madrid will do it for you. Romantic city break? Try Venice, Rome or even Reykjavik. Finally, for far flung destinations, set your sights on Dubai or New York.