These dreary April Showers have got us endlessly searching for ‘weekend escapes’. Here are our top five city getaways that you could easily do in 48 hours – which is great if your annual leave leaves much to be desired.
Perhaps the oldest and most artistic city in Italy, Naples is teaming with palaces, castles and churches, as well as beautiful ruins that are well worth an explore. It’s hottest in July, so if you’re going then, make sure you pack a skirt or a pair of shorts. Soak up the Neapolitan history at Museo Archeologico Nazionale, which serves up the finest Graeco-Roman artefacts. Known for their serious culinary skills, Naples serves up some of the best pizza in Italy. For an authentic slice of the action we recommend a pizzeria called Trianon da Ciro – it’s ovens have been firing since 1923.
AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS
A city surrounded by a network of canals, Amsterdam is the capital city of the Netherlands with more bikes than permanent residents. Canals are lined with six-storey houses, which lean onto one another providing some pretty aesthetically pleasing pictures for the ‘gram. If you have to go to one museum, the Anne Frank Museum is just something you have to do. Feeling peckish? Take a trip to the Vegan Junk Food Bar for delicious food that hits the spot. You can do all this before heading out for a drink at Beer Temple for some craft beers or Door 74 for a speakeasy style cocktail bar.
Made up of two halves (Buda an ancient city on the hill and Pest the modern heart of the capital), Budapest has the River Danube as its backdrop and a grid of natural hot springs – all incredibly insta-worthy. During the day, St. Stephen’s Basilica is impressive inside and out, as is the Hungarian Parliament – the country’s largest building. Eat like a local at the Kiosk – it’s housed in a former theatre with triple-height ceilings and massive windows. Looking to party? Why not try a SPArty? Wait until sunset for Budapest’s thermal baths to turn into an aquatic dance floor complete with DJs and laser lights. Make a splash in our standout swimsuit or trunks.
The heart of Scandi-cool, Copenhagen is home to cutting edge design and serves up culinary masterpieces with its many Michelin-starred restaurants. The presence of so many top eateries means that restaurants like Noma (which has a 6000-person waiting list) are sourcing organic produce from their own greenhouses, farms and gardens. Once you’ve tasted a Danish dish, jump on a bike, head to 180cph and grab a coffee with the locals. Make sure you stop off at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, it’s housed in an old country house but its innovative interior will surprise you.
Our top reason to visit Porto? Well, the clue’s in the name – port! Discovered in the 18th century when the British found that mixing Portuguese red wine with brandy made wine last longer on long sea journeys, the streets of Porto run with the stuff. Book a tour (and tasting) to one of the many port houses and bring a bottle back for us. Built on hills overlooking the Douro river, you can hike around (apologies to your hamstrings in advance) to take in the amazing medieval-meets-modern architecture (see for yourself here). Finally, don’t pass up the opportunity to see the Igreja de São Francisco, the interiors are total gold goals.