When I think about where I want to spend my vacation, a paradisiac place usually comes to my mind. But that involves two, three weeks off and an appropriate budget – therefore, it’s only possible once or twice a year, best-case scenario. Until then, let’s enjoy some experiences at hand and discover new places. I’ve made a short list of five less resounding European destinations that are just perfect for an extended weekend.
The colourful, panelled houses and the paved narrow streets give you a feeling of a fairy-tale town, where time stands still. With its medieval and renaissance architecture and its well-preserved fortification walls, Rothenburg is a real open-air museum. You can visit the ruins of the imperial castle from 1142, the famous Museum of Medieval Crimes and you can enjoy a spectacular view from the top of the wall surrounding the town.
Eze is a picturesque place, literally built on a rock and very close to Nice, the famous destination on the French Riviera. The exotic gardens, the stylish coffee shops and restaurants have a special flavour, especially as the Mediterranean Sea is so close. In the evening, the narrow streets, illuminated by lampposts, are perfect for a romantic walk.
If you’re not a fan of low temperatures, Podgorica may be the ideal destination for you, as winters here are so mild. Surrounded by mountains, the town lies in a narrow depression – with five rivers crossing its territory. One of the main attractions is the old Turkish town, with the narrow streets just like the ones in the Middle East, the Ottoman style buildings and mosques. Podgorica also hosts a lot of cultural events, so be sure to check the season’s agenda.
The Lithuanian capital has an unique charm that you will discover as soon as you step on its lovely, narrow streets, meet its impressive cathedrals and old architecture, with Scandinavian, Russian and German influences. Here you can also visit the largest Old City in Eastern Europe – in the UNESCO heritage –, where you’ll be surprised to find a spectacular baroque church at every corner. Actually, the city is also known as the “Jerusalem of the North” or the “Athens of Lithuania”.
I always loved port cities. And Tallinn is an impressive, medieval port, where the rich history blends with the modern attractions. It’s perfect for a weekend destination, as it is a compact city that you can really appreciate by walking – especially if you enjoy long walks. The old city – with its impeccably preserved historical buildings – is located right next to the new business centre, cluttered with tempting restaurants and eye-catching shops. See you there, OK?