Tired of the grind? We know the feeling – you’ve worked hard for the life you’ve built for you and your family/partner, but we all get worn down after a while.
Need to recharge? City breaks are a great way to experience some of the best urban environments Europe has to offer without using valuable vacation time – fly over on a long weekend, spend a few nights in a cultured corner of the world, and fly back just in time for Monday morning.
Willing to give this travel method a try? In this blog, we’ll share several top European city breaks that will renew your lust for life.
As accessible city breaks go, London is one of the most popular destinations for Americans, and for good reason. It’s not that English is spoken (although it certainly makes communication easier), but its variety of activities and attractions appeal to almost every interest.
Like theatre? London’s scene, situated in Covent Garden, is NYC’s peer on this side of the Atlantic.
Into gastronomy? This city is home to almost every nationality, drawing eminently skilled chefs from every corner of the globe.
Big sports fan? London is home to no less than four Premier League Football (soccer) teams and plays host to the Wimbledon Championship (tennis) every spring.
One knock on London is that it can be quite expensive, especially in its centre. This may not be a huge concern if you are only visiting for a few days, but you may need to load up on cash a few times during your stay.
In this case, keep your eyes peeled for HSBC branches, as they offer fair exchange rates and transaction fees to Americans who use their ATM’s.
If you’d like to avoid the inconvenience of paying ATM fees, you can order Pound Sterling at an HSBC back home – just be sure to calculate an accurate travel budget so you aren’t left searching for a cash machine towards the end of your stay.
Looking to get in touch with your Scottish roots? Set your course for Edinburgh, one of the most architecturally sexy cities in the United Kingdom. All along the Royal Mile, you’ll find Renaissance, Gothic, and Neoclassical structures in one of the top European city breaks on the continent. Of them, many house cozy pubs which pour locally and regionally famous brands of beer.
As can’t miss sights go, start with Holyrood House at the lower portion of the Royal Mile and end with Edinburgh Castle at the top. Love starting your day with a workout? Climb to the top of Arthur’s Seat in time for sunrise – if you end up doing this, don’t forget to pack your headlamp.
Amsterdam, the Netherlands
More than just a party place for young people on stag dos, Amsterdam is a culture and gastronomic capital worthy of a few days of intensive sightseeing. Tour its canals on a boat tour and gain an appreciation for the charming Dutch style of building – known as the Venice of the North, there are plenty of routes to take.
Once back on land, discover this city’s cultural assets: start with the Rijksmuseum, which preserves some of the best paintings done during the Dutch Golden Age, then move on to the Van Gogh Museum, which features the top works of the Post Impressionist master.
Need to inject some romance in your life? It’s time you and your significant other experienced Paris for the first time.
With graceful architecture, no shortage of restaurants serving one of the world’s best cuisines, and some of the planet’s most respected cultural institutions, you’ll find plenty of reasons to be passionate about life during your visit here.
Start with the Louvre – as the largest museum on the face of the Earth, you’ll be able to spend all day checking out artifacts and artwork from around the globe if you wish.
At dinner, hit up Le Coupe-Chou, as its old-world atmosphere will trigger feelings you haven’t felt in a long time.
Want to get that iconic shot of the Eiffel Tower? Get off the Paris Metro at Place de Trocadero. This plaza is situated across the river from the famous spire, making it ideal for couple selfies in a city that is easily one of our favourite top European city breaks.