city break london amsterdam barcelona travel holiday vacationsPin it

Discover cheap city breaks & explore the world  

Ahoy pirates, are you already dreaming of your next short break but don't want to spend crazy amounts of money or stay away for longer than a few nights? Luckily we always have some cheap city break deals for you!  In fact, you can even find domestic city breaks for less than £100​​​​​​​, especially if you are looking for a great value last minute holiday!

Get inspired and plan your next city break with us! Once you've booked, check out our packing list for your perfect city trip to make sure you have everything you need. 

Check out our latest city break deals

Top 9 city break destinations for 2020

Get away from it all with a short break or a long weekend in the world's best cities. 

Weekend break in Europe - 7 affordable European cities that won't break the bank

You don't have to go far to find great cities that are worth a trip. Most cities in Europe are within just a few hours flight from the UK and are some of the most interesting and historical in the world. There's so much to see and do that a good time is guaranteed - even if it's just for a few nights. Here are our favourite low-cost European city breaks for 2020.

  • Rome, Italy - The eternal city offers a great mix of culture, shopping and food.

  • Paris, France - Deservedly known as one of the most romantic cities in the world.
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands - Walk along the romantic canals, peek into museums, and watch as the soft neons come alive each night in the well-known Red Light District.
  • Krakow, Poland - Wander the old streets and visit the weird and wonderful museums in one of Europe's cheapeast cities.
  • Madrid, Spain - Explore typical Spanish architecture with  a unique flair.
  • Lisbon, Portugal - Somehow still one of the most underrated destinations for a city trip. Don't miss out on the rich culture and great beaches!
  • London, UK - You don't even have to leave the UK for an amazing city break. London offers you everything you'd expect from a great city break.
vacation rome holiday colosseum italy europe city trip city break
Pin it
city_trips_melbourne_city_skyline_australia_sun
Pin it

Great city breaks for the winter

Escape the cold back home and head to these destinations where the sun seems to always shine and the temperatures stay pleasant, even in December and January:

  • Melbourne, Australia – highs of 24°C to 26°C in winter.
  • Funchal, Madeira – highs of around 20°C in winter.
  • Los Angeles, USA – highs of around 20°C in winter.
  • Puerto del Carmen, Lanzarote – highs of around 20°C in winter.
  • Cape Town, South Africa – highs of around 30°C in winter.

Cheap city breaks away

Here are just a few ideas to get you started, looking at some of the most visited cities in the world:

  • Hong Kong – Ideal for a look at unique and ultra-modern Asia.
  • New York City, USA – An iconic American destination which perfectly blends culture and entertainment.
  • Bangkok, Thailand – Known for its vibrancy and legendary nightlife.
  • Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – An ever-growing metropolis balancing progress and tradition.
  • Seoul, South Korea – One of the most intriguing cities in Asia.
City_Trips_Kuala_Lumpur_skyline_Twin_Tower_Vacation
Pin it

Check out our other city break deals!

Cheap weekend breaks for those on a budget

What better way to spend the weekend than exploring a new city whilst not smashing through the savings? From bargain weekends away within the U.K. to our favourite cities just a short flight away, there are plenty of budget destinations ideal to spend a few nights away on a weekend break. To make the most of a weekend trip, we recommend trying to “bridge” your bank holidays —however, all of our top picks below can be easily done in just 2-3 days. 

HolidayPirates always have some great deals for a weekend break on a budget. Especially if you have a full-time 9-5 job a weekend away might be the perfect choice for you. You won't even need to take a single holiday day to enjoy and explore the best city trip destinations in Europe. Check out our weekend break ideas, perfect for a solo holiday as well as a group getaway with friends. 

hiking backpack holiday weekend trip
Pin it

Edinburgh, Scotland

Although the Scottish capital isn’t well-known as a budget destination, it’s easy to keep spending to a minimum, particularly if you travel in the off season. Get outside and climb Arthur’s Seat or visit the botanical gardens—both free—or, if you catch the rain, head to the Scottish National Gallery or National Museum of Scotland (free admission). Stick to budget eats (like Oink’s famous stuffed rolls) and student-friendly pubs to make your trip even more wallet-friendly.  

Canary Islands, Spain

If you have the chance to go on a short break to the Canary Islands, you should do it. The flight from London is about 4 hours. So still reasonable! Even if you only stay for 2 or 3 nights, enjoying the sun and strolling on the beach will be definitely worth it. No matter if you prefer Tenerife, Gran Canaria or La Gomera. All the Canary Islands are a good choice for a weekend break.

Prague, Czech Republic

Economical travelers will know that Prague is one of the best cities in Europe for a low-cost trip. This city offers a healthy balance between party and culture. The city carries with it a gothic essence and medieval architecture that provides a unique party scene. The beer is some of the best in the world and cheap at about £1.50 a pint. Accommodation is affordable, while there are plenty of attractions that also won't break the bank. As one of the most beautiful old cities in Europe, Prague is one of the best places to simply wander around and enjoy your time without spending a penny!

Palma, Majorca

While the beach towns of Majorca draw crowds of Brits every summer, a stay in the island’s capital, Palma, works any time of the year. As the small coastal towns board up in the winter season, Palma’s small cafes, art galleries, and walkable neighborhoods flourish. Festivals take place throughout the winter season, meaning you can hike the mountainous trails on the island’s Western coast by day and join the festivities by night. The rest of the year, the capital is a good place to mix in sightseeing and lazy afternoons in outdoor cafes with journeys to the beaches in the surrounding areas. 

Krakow_Mary_s_Church_Poland_Cheap_City_Trips
Pin it

Cheap city breaks

On a budget? There are many wonderful cities to visit, where affordable air fares, accommodation, and daily costs will leave you plenty of cash for another trip later on. Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, offers low prices at even the most luxurious places to stay, allowing you to savour Eastern European architecture and delicious food. Krakow, Poland is rich in history and also famously inexpensive for a trip. Finally, while there are places in Spain with cheaper daily costs, flights to Barcelona are often magnificently affordable, and there's so much to see that the overall value is excellent.

The best cities for a romantic weekend

Paris is arguably the most iconic destination for lovers looking for a romantic escape, but have you ever considered a city break to Florence, Italy? The Galleria dell'Accademia houses Michelangelo's David, which is just the start of the city's artistic offerings. Stroll hand in hand through the piazzas as you enjoy some gelato and see the Arno River at sunset. Buenos Aires, Argentina is often said to have the most European feel of the South American capitals. Explore the trendy and colourful La Boca neighbourhood and admire the gorgeous buildings in Plaza de Mayo. Or head to the medinas of Marrakech, Morocco. The vibrant markets and splendid architecture, such as the 19th-century Bahia Palace, set the stage for a culturally rich and romantic city break.

france_holiday_paris_eiffel_tower_romantic_travel_deals
Pin it

The 10 best UK city breaks for 2020

Often when we think of going on holiday, our first idea is to hop on a plane and head somewhere far away. But wait! Because you might miss out on some of the amazing destinations we have right here at home.

Summer 2020 is all about the staycation holiday and there are plenty of historic, exciting and fun cities in the UK to explore. From the historic beauty of Edinburgh and York to the buzzing metropolis of London, our list of the best city breaks in the UK has something for everyone, whether you're looking for a day out or a long weekend away. 

A map with a magnifying glass hovering over the UK
Pin it

1. Bath

The beautiful and stunning city of Bath is the largest city in Somerset and arguably one of the prettiest cities in the whole country. Its compact city centre makes it ideal for visitors who want to wander around the city enjoying the sites without a lot of commuting.

Marvel at the Honey-coloured Georgian architecture that you’ll find throughout the city, visit some of the wonderful museums and of course no trip to Bath is complete without a visit to the Roman Baths which date back to 60-70CE. 

If you like to eat (who doesn’t), Bath has loads of great restaurants, including the Michelin-starred Olive Tree, as well plenty of bars and traditional pubs serving local British classics.

2. Birmingham

Once the industrial heartland of the Midlands, Birmingham is now home to so much more with a burgeoning arts scene and a buzzy nightlife. Have a potter through the Jewellery Quarter (home to more than 200 listed buildings) and try and get yourself a bargain or pay a visit to one of the city’s many Michelin-starred restaurants (Birmingham has the second-most in the country behind London).

Fancy doing something a little different? The city has an incredible network of canals that date back to the industrial revolution and while they might not carry much freight these days, they are lined with trendy bars and cafés.

And no trip to Birmingham would be complete without a stop at Cadbury World, home of the famous chocolate factory.

3. Edinburgh

The capital of Scotland is, for many people, the heart and soul of the country. With its Old Town dating back to Medieval times and world-famous annual Fringe Festival, the city really has something for everyone.

We would definitely recommend a visit to Edinburgh Castle which is certainly one of the city’s most iconic landmarks. Boldly sitting above one of the city’s extinct volcanoes (yes, you did read that right), the Castle has impressive views of the city below. Plus, they have a tea room if you get a bit peckish.

If you want to treat yourself, you can’t do much better than a day shopping on Victoria Street which has plenty of boutique and chic shops for all tastes.

4. Liverpool

The city may be best known as the home of The Beatles but it has so much more to offer with national museums, art galleries, incredible restaurants and a cracking nightlife to boot.

Love them or hate them, Liverpool FC are now champions of England so why not head over to Anfield for a stadium tour and see the Premier League Trophy. If that doesn’t tickle your fancy, check out the Tate Modern -- entry is free with a charge for exhibitions.

We’d also suggest a visit to the Museum of Liverpool, which you might have guessed from the name is all about… Liverpool! There’s also the Merseyside Maritime Museum.

Want to let your hair down? Liverpool has many, many options and is known for having a vibrant nightlife.  The best bars and nightclubs (when they re-open) are all thankfully in the city centre.

Find your next UK city break here:

5. London

London, the grand capital of the United Kingdom, is truly a global city with cultural and historical influences from across the world.

A perfect day could involve so many things but no trip should miss a romantic walk along the South Bank with a visit to the Tate Modern and the London Eye. Or do some shopping on Europe's busiest shopping - Oxford Street - where you’ll find hundreds of shops to choose from. 

How about a wander around one of the beautiful parks? Have a stroll through Regents Park up to Primrose Hill where you’ll find one of the most stunning views of London in the whole city.

Finish your time off with dinner and drinks in lively and vibrant Soho before calling it a day.

6. Manchester

Manchester may be famed for its musical heritage (is the home of Oasis, the Stone Roses and many, many more bands) but there is so much more to the bustling northern city.

Check out the trendy Northern Quarter which is packed full of art galleries as well incredible street art (it’s not called graffiti any more apparently). 

Alternatively, pay a visit to The Lowry, a theatre and gallery complex which has plenty of shops, restaurants and even a cinema. Plus, Old Trafford is close by if you wish to visit and do a tour.

7. Newcastle

Newcastle in the northeast of England, once a major shipbuilding hub, is now better known for its vibrant nightlife and top-notch restaurant scene.

The city is crammed full of great places to eat with a Michelin-starred restaurant (House of Tides) and loads of other highly decorated spots to grab some grub.

If you want some culture, we’d suggest a visit to Newcastle Castle (bit of a mouthful) or maybe check out one of the many art galleries. We’re fond of The Biscuit Factory but that is mainly due to the name.

8. York

With its Roman roots, Viking past, ancient walls and glorious Gothic 13th-century Cathedral, York cannot help but be steeped in glorious history.

Firstly, everyone has to visit The Shambles - an olde-worlde style narrow street where some of the buildings date back to the 14th-century. It feels almost a bit like Harry Potter when you’re there.

Next up, don’t forget to visit the York Minster (that’s the Cathedral) which has well-preserved Medieval stained glass windows and, if you have the stamina, there’s an amazing view from the top of the tower of the whole city.

After a long day of sightseeing, treat yourself to a cup of tea and a cake at one of the city’s many tea shops. We’re quite partial to Brew and Brownie.

Hand luggage only breaks

The Koutoubia Mosque in Marrakech
Pin it

1. Marrakech


A quick 3-hour flight opens the door to a different world of colour, architecture, culture, and food. Explore the streets of Marrakesh, ignite your taste buds with aromatic dishes and take in the country’s history.

Tips for Marrakesh: Visit the 12th-century Koutoubia Mosque and shop for jewellery at the Jemaa el-Fnaa.

A shot of some canal side houses in Amsterdam at night
Pin it

5. Amsterdam

A tourist favourite, the narrow streets of Amsterdam will keep you and your friends close on this weekend break. And watch out for the cyclists!

Tips for Amsterdam: Visit the Anne Frank House, Van Gough museum and cruise the Amsterdam Canal. End your day by sipping on a cold lager at the Heineken Experience.

A view of Belfast at night
Pin it

2. Belfast

Take a break in Northern Ireland’s capital of Belfast. Instead of staying at home and watching your favourite movie “Titanic” why not go to the Titanic Museum and visit the shipyard where the ship was built. Flights to Belfast take no time at all and it's easy to pack light.

Tips for Belfast: Visit the Ulster Museum for a taste of Irish history or climb up to Belfast Castle.

Piazza Navona in Rome
Pin it

6. Rome

When in Rome…become a part of the ancient city and dwell in its superb and rich history. Get a taste for La Dolce Vita on a weekend break to the Italian capital.

Tips for Rome: Visit the Colosseum, Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel. 

A quiet street with a cafe in Paris
Pin it

3. Paris

What would our list be if we didn’t include Paris? But there is more to this city of love than just the Eiffel Tower or the Louvre. This historic city is full of character and offers an experience that ticks many bucket lists.

Tips for Paris: Visit the burial site of Oscar Wilde and Chopin at the Père Lachaise cemetery or take the kids on an unforgettable trip to Disneyland Paris

Prague illuminated at night
Pin it

7. Budapest

Budapest makes a fantastic city trip destination for travellers of all ages. There's loads to see and do, but the city is also becoming more well known for its party scene. Low prices, plentiful flights and great weather in summer means Budapest is perfect for a quick weekend away. 

Tips for Budapest: Check out some of the famous ruin bars - open air bars set in the ruins of buildings - for some of the best of Budapest's party scene

Park Guell in Barcelona
Pin it

4. Barcelona

The city on the coast of Spain offers a combination of modern design and traditional Spanish architecture that will appeal to all your senses. Rich in football culture, you will be able to sing your club’s song while exploring rival grounds.

Tips for Barcelona: Go to the magic fountain of Montjuic or visit the Picasso museum and kick a ball around at the home of FC Barcelona, Camp Nou.

Museum island a boat in Berlin
Pin it

8. Berlin

Berlin has historically been the city that accommodates weekend breakers. Its cosmopolitan nature is warm and inviting to all visitors.

Tips for Berlin: Walk through the Brandenburg gate or get a birds-eye view of the city from the Berliner Fernsehturm.

Here are even more great deals for your next city trip!