27 Apr 5 of the best cities to visit for a refreshing Spring getaway
There’s no doubt that living or working in a big, busy city can take it’s toll on your day to day health. Sometimes we need a change of scenery so we can come back with a fresh perspective; whether it’s on work, relationships, or life in general. Whether you want to escape the stress of London or simply fancy a fun weekend away, take a look at some of our favourite locations which are perfect for a short Spring getaway.
Budapest is a city absolutely full of life, without feeling too cramped or busy like London often can. This city break is probably best suited to those of you who enjoy exploring and trying new things. In warmer weather the local natural springs are a refreshing treat, and you can also absorb the beautiful views of the Danube. One of the best things about Budapest is the food – and being Budapest, it’s all super cheap. You can even enjoy a three course michelin star meal for under £30! Visit Comme Chez Soi or St. Andrea Wine & Gourmet Bar (which have both received certificates of excellence) for international high-quality cuisine at very affordable prices (£3-£15). A very popular attraction in Budapest is the Ruin Pubs, which are actually thriving bars situated inside old building ruins. They are generally crammed full of crazy furniture, a bizarre mish-mash of vintage objects, and of course an amazing vibe. They truly are a unique experience – one of the best is the highly recommended Szimpla Kert which features great drinks, multiple floors, movie projections, and some of the weirdest art you’ve ever seen…
We all know Amsterdam is a great break away from home – whether you go for the history or for the local culture. As well as the abundance of incredible street art, risque museums and the Red Light District, there are a bunch of other hidden gems hidden inside this inspiring city. There is definitely a slightly more relaxed vibe than in Budapest, but there’s still plenty to do and see. Cat-lovers can take a peek inside ‘Die Poezenboot’ for free; the only animal sanctuary that floats. You can cuddle up to the furry guests and learn more about them, and it’s great to know they’re being looked after well. Amsterdam is also a city known for it’s wonderful antique markets, where you can shop for a bargain amongst the canals and lively streets. Antiekcentrum Amsterdam is right in the centre and one of the more popular flea market destinations – pop along and browse antique furniture, old paintings, watches, antique jewelry, silverware, toys, and much more.
This is one to go to if you REALLY need a getaway from the city life. Perhaps better suited if you have a couple of days extra to spare, but visiting Reykjavik is like travelling to another world. Of course the main attractions are the stunning natural wonders, which you can visit on an easy and affordable organised tour (Iceland boasts tons of them) – we recommend the Golden Circle tour where you can explore the Þingvellir national park, the Gullfoss waterfall and the geysers Geysir and Strokkur. For a an even more relaxing experience, visit the breathtaking Blue Lagoon natural thermal spa, located within a lava field (from £30). And yes, there’s a bar IN the baths. If it’s a bit outside your budget, don’t fret – there are tons of smaller local thermal spas around town such as the Árbæjarlaug pool. Often forgotten is Reykjavik’s art gallery scene, which is thriving. If you want a break from the chilly outdoors then explore one of their brilliant contemporary galleries; Reykjavik Art Museum, Galleri Fold, and the lesser known Gallery i8.
At a first glance, Munich may not seem like an incredibly interesting city to visit – but all that will change once you arrive. The city is chock a block full of culture and fun things to try, including two of our favourite things – food and drink. The best thing to do in a German city of course – soak up the German culture! You can get the true experience of a traditional Bavarian Beerhaus at The Hofbräuhaus and taste the local brews – although it’s the most popular beerhaus (and consequently the busiest) it is also the most authentic and can give you a true flavour of Munich culture (even the waiters are in traditional dress). If you’d prefer something a little more off the beaten track, we’d definitely suggest popping to Augustiner Bräustuben which is much quieter but has tons of great food as well as beers. Once you’re done with drinking, continue exploring Bavarian culture at Zwickl – Gastlichkeit am Viktualienmarkt – one of the best traditional meatball restaurants in the city and rated as being in the top 10. We know holidays aren’t JUST about drinking and eating (although that’s a pretty good part of it!) so for some local culture pop to the Munich Residenz or the enormous Pinakothek Museum. And if that’s not your thing, there’s a vegan cat cafe next door. Seriously.
We know not everyone can afford to jet away when they’re not feeling London life, so we thought it was equally as important to include an affordable option. Bath is only an hour and a half by train from London, but you may as well be in an entirely different culture. The scenery is gorgeous, and smattered with cobbled streets, quaint cafes and breathtaking views. This city definitely has an entirely different feel from the busy streets of London. Visit the historical Roman baths for a hit of local culture, or do as the locals do (when in Rome…) and enjoy an afternoon tea. Sip a hot drink with some nibbles and treats while enjoying the afternoon tea at Bea’s Vintage Tea Room (£15.45) or try the Indulgence Cafe & Patisserie for locally made pastries and cakes. If the weather’s nice, the weekend is probably best spent wandering the town and going on your own walking tour – there’s tons of gorgeous greenery and parks to relax in, which as we know can be scarce in the big city!
Budapest image by: