A Perfect City Break

A perfect city break
Living in the UK means I have access to a huge number of options for city breaks within just a few hours of travel. This year I’ve been on three; Budapest, Barcelona and Brussels. 2016 has been the year of B, clearly!

This month’s travel linkup is all about “A perfect…”

Having just returned from a long weekend in Brussels it got me thinking about how much I love a city break. Everyone will have different aspects that will create their perfect weekend away, I know I have come to the conclusion that there is a definite tick list when it comes to planning my perfect city break!

So, what makes the perfect city break?

Are you a cultural fiend, creating a long list of art galleries and exhibitions to visit? Do you hunt out the best places eat and the local hidden gems? Do you look for adventure!? Is finding the most luxurious and unique shops your thing?

A Perfect City Break
I have been on many a city break and I have come to realise everyone likes something different and I definitely have a city break ‘style’. I like to explore as much as possible on foot to get a real feel for a city. It’s possibly one of my favourite things to do, except for eating my way around too, of course!

My recent city break to Brussels was very different though to my trip to Barcelona in August. They are very different cities indeed, however, my weekend did include many of the same elements. Each city has it’s own unique make-up, but I usually apply a similar formula to each one I visit.

What makes my perfect city break?

1. Staying centrally

This is crucial in my opinion. You only have limited time with normally just a couple of days so you want to maximise it. You don’t want to spend all your time travelling in and out of the city. Obviously this affects the cost but that is why I think airbnb can be a great option. Or if you plan far enough in advance you can find some little gems if your looking for a hotel. Also, by staying centrally it meas you should hopefully save some money on transport.

A Perfect City Break

2. Being able to walk for hours, exploring

I love to explore by foot and soak in the local area. This also links back to Number 1 – if you’re central it allows you to explore more by foot and you can usually return easily during the day for naps etc. I do like a siesta to make sure I’m ready for an evening of eating and drinking! I usually make a plan for the day including the areas I want to visit or particular monuments, galleries etc, then plan my walking route!

A perfect city break

3. Finding the best food

For me finding the best food is finding a mixture of local food, where locals eat and the top rated restaurants. It doesn’t always have to be 5 star, a hole in the wall can sometimes be the best food in a city! Ahead of a weekend break I will research where the best places to eat are, and find out what is the best local dish to try.

A perfect city break
I may book one or two places, but then have a list to hand of other places so that if we’re in the area at the right time I know whats good. Also, the internet is a wonderful thing… if somewhere looks good but you’re unsure, a quick google search and you can usually see in a moment whether it’s a dud or not. I’m only there for such a short period of time, I hate having a disappointing meal.

A perfect city break

4. Cultural gems

I love architecture. I don’t pretend to know anything about it, but I love to just look at all the different buildings for housing, offices and galleries and finding pretty churches, monuments and squares. It tells the whole history of the place you are in. I don’t do this enough in London but I love it on holiday. Annoyingly to whoever I’m travelling with, I stop and start all the time snapping away on my camera.

A perfect city break

5. Taking time to relax

It’s a break after all! This usually comes in the form of naps or cocktails and people watching. I find those rather relaxing too. Drink pit stops with a good glass of bubbles are my favourite for people watching ! And a great opportunity to rest your feet before wandering onto the next place.

A perfect city break
I just love a weekend away somewhere new. I always come back feeling energised, even if that late flight back on Sunday evening made you feel a little sleepy on Monday morning. I still return feeling enthusiastic about life. Never a bad way to feel.

What does your perfect city break look like? Or do you prefer to spend a weekend away in the countryside!? 

This post was part of November’s Travel Link-Up, hosted by Emma, Angie and Jamie. Head over to their blogs to read more posts about “A perfect …” and join the link up.


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22 Comments

  1. November 1, 2016 / 2:07 pm

    OMG, I LOVED Brussels when I went for a mini-break with my best friend! At the time, I thought it was a totally random place to visit, but then I discovered just how much the city had to offer. And it was perfect for those little breaks to relax, just as you describe in your last paragraph!

    • November 3, 2016 / 9:22 am

      Yes, I really loved it too! My brother is studying urban development there so he was able to give me a great guided tour. And like you say so many great little places to stop for a drink pit stop!

    • November 3, 2016 / 9:34 am

      Walking and food is always the core of any city break I take! :)

    • November 3, 2016 / 9:35 am

      I think walking everywhere is just such a great way to experience a new city!

  2. November 2, 2016 / 8:37 am

    Agree with ALL your points – especially about finding the best food! I’m not usually organised enough to have actually booked them but the first thing I do is mark out my shortlist on the map so if we’re in the neighbourhood during the day, we might want to scope it out either for lunch or dinner!

  3. November 2, 2016 / 10:48 am

    I love a good city break, and totally agree about needing to stay central. The last thing I want to deal with on holiday is commuter transport nightmares!

    • November 3, 2016 / 9:40 am

      Oh god no. I hate commuting in my real life, so totally avoid for holiday, otherwise the ‘relax’ part is never achieved!

  4. November 2, 2016 / 12:11 pm

    Partial to a spot of retail therapy, I find you can always pick up something unique on your travels that you normally wouldn’t find at home… especially food items!

    • November 3, 2016 / 11:06 am

      I totally agree! I always try to pick up something that I can’t find at home.

  5. November 2, 2016 / 2:42 pm

    City breaks are definitely the best option! I love me some peace and quiet, but I get bored quickly and I like to see, do and eat things and go, go, go. #travellinkup

    • November 3, 2016 / 11:21 am

      I love being about to see lots of different things all in one place too!

  6. November 2, 2016 / 5:19 pm

    I love a weekend away in the countryside but really would love to have another weekend in Paris! Sophie x

    sophiehmstewart.com

  7. November 3, 2016 / 9:58 am

    We love weekends away and city breaks because they give us something to look forward to during the long hours at the office. We always plan our meals first and then we organize our days. We love food! Central location is key, agreed!

    • November 3, 2016 / 1:36 pm

      I love that you plan your meals first and then organise your day – this is my kind of method!

  8. November 4, 2016 / 5:21 pm

    Spot on, that is exactly how we do city breaks too! Achey legs from walking, but fully relaxed from wine and coffee-ing

  9. November 4, 2016 / 7:11 pm

    Love this Vicky! I think you’ve hit the nail on the head with each of your 5 points. I do love planning a city break. We’ve tonnes of ‘Top 10’ guide books to various cities and of course all the travel blogs out there! 😁

    • November 7, 2016 / 9:39 am

      I felt the same before I went. But it’s a lovely little city with great architecture and good food – a winner for me! x

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