Top 10 city trips

What are the most beautiful cities in Europe for a city trip by plane? We selected our own top 10 most beautiful European cities, which beautiful in spring, summer, autumn and winter. All cities are full of classic sights, ambience and historic splendour. Maybe we give you some ideas for your next city trip!

  1. Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon is the capital of Portugal. It is one of the most romantic cities for a city trip, making it the perfect destination to go here with the love of your life. The Portuguese capital extends over seven hills on the north side of the Tagus River. Take a look at the lovely streets in Alfama’s, the historic district in the heart of the city. Admire the medieval architecture of churches and small town squares. Visit the Castelo de São Jorge, which rises high above the city, and greets you by the guitar sounds of musicians that contribute to the romantic appearance of the streets. Be prepared to listen to Fado, Lisbon’s own music style. Lisbon International Airport is 10 kilometers north of the city center. By metro, bus and train you can reach the city easily.

  1. Zagreb, Croatia

The relaxed Zagreb is the culture and political heart of Croatia. Culture in Zagreb is widely present with a lot of theaters and certainly sixty museums and art galleries. Recommendations are the Museum of Modern Art and the Art Pavilion. Zagreb is also very cheap, for about five euros you can have a good meal here. Explore everything by bike or car. There are countless cycling routes leading you through valleys, villages, castles and rivers. For maps and detailed information visit the website of the tourist center of Zagreb.

  1. Rome, Italy

Rome is a true open-air museum and, according to many, the most beautiful city in Italy and perhaps also the most beautiful city in Europe. Here you will find the famous Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, Vatican City, the Angels Palace, the Vittorio Emanuele Monument and the Pantheon. Let yourself be overwhelmed by Vatican City! In this small state of the Pope, you can spend days between the most spectacular highlights. St. Peter’s Basilica was by far the largest church in the world. If you climb the giant dome, you have a beautiful view of the city. You can also go to the famous painting “The Creation of Adam” of Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel with your own eyes. Rome has so much to offer. You can stay here for weeks!

4. Barcelona, ​​Spain

Barcelona, ​​the capital of Catalonia located in northern Spain, is one of the best beach towns in the world. And that’s no more than just because a few steps away from the center is a mere five kilometers of golden beach on the Mediterranean. Perfect for those who want to combine a citytrip in Barcelona with a beach trip on the Spanish coast! The beach is divided under different names and stretches from the old fishing district of La Barceloneta to the north to Badalona. If you say Barcelona and culture in one breath, you probably think of Gaudí. The Catalan capital is also known for the signature of this Spanish architect, next to the best beach town. Gaudí has ​​influenced Barcelona a lot. The highlight – literally and figuratively – is the huge Basilica of Sagrada Família, located in the center of the city.

  1. Venice, Italy

If you have already been in Venice, this feeling will usually remain unchanged. Venice is one large monumental romantic open-air museum, where a normal person just can not get enough of it. Although Venice is the most touristy city in Italy – usually a reason to stay away – this city is truly amazing! You are immediately caught by the beauty of the city. Bridges, canals, a maze of small, often dead end streets, canals, gondolas, cheerfully singing their passengers to the city, many old merchant palaces, stately squares like the world famous Piazza San Marco. We have to say that drinking or eating in this square, or actually everywhere in Venice, is very expensive!

6. Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amsterdam is the capital of the Netherlands and is known for its tolerant policies, the canals, museums and many more sights. Nationally and internationally people travel to Amsterdam for these reasons. Take a canal tour, watch the waxes statues in Madame Tussauds or take a city walk along the hotspots. Because everything is so close, you walk quickly from A to B. The center is full of cozy narrow streets where you can have lunch or dinner. In the evening you can taste hundreds of pubs and nightlife nightclubs.

  1. Istanbul, Turkey

Turkey’s largest city is both European and Asian and was the capital of a powerful empire for centuries. Istanbul is now modern and traditional. More than 13 million people live in Istanbul. It is the most densely populated city in Europe and it is not hard to see why the city has such a great appeal. The fusion of east and west, reflected in the culture, architecture, art and cuisine of Istanbul, is truly unique. Istanbul’s main attraction is the Topkapi Palace, the former Sultan Palace. It is a huge building in which you not only find different museums, but also the former harem. The Blue Mosque (Sultanahmet Mosque), near Hagia Sophia, is the largest mosque of the city. It is the only mosque in the world with six minarets (towers). The mosque is the symbol of the city of Istanbul and very popular with tourists and inhabitants. The mosque thanks its name to the thousands of blue tiles with which the mosque is lined with.

  1. Prague, Czech Republic

Most of the sights in Prague can be found in the city center. Here is the famous clock of Prague, you will find hundreds of shops and is the central point between Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, Jewish Quarter and the cozy district of Malá Strana. The 520 meter long Charles Bridge, which connects the Old Town and the Malá Strana district, is one of the most famous bridges in the world. Of course, this is due to the beautiful towers at the beginning and end, and through the 30 holy statues. In Prague there are plenty of things to do. But even when the sun goes down, there is enough to do. There is a very large underground scene where you can have a great time!

9. Vienna, Austria

Vienna does not have the most ‘hip’ reputation as a European city trip, but is one of the most beautiful European cities in the classic sense of the word. The city on the Danube is the cultural, political and economic heart of Austria. The rich history is reflected in many beautiful museums and historic buildings. Vienna is also the world center of classical music, and the (former) living and workplace of famous composers like Mozart and Beethoven.

10. Sevilla, Spain

The Andalusian capital of Seville is one of Spain’s finest and most beautiful cities, full of atmospheric squares, beautiful historic buildings, orange trees and delicious tapas. Sevilla is ideally suited for a weekend getaway in autumn, winter or spring. The city has the warmest climate of all of Spain, and even in the winter months it is 16 degrees on average. One of Seville’s most distinctive sights is the fabulous Plaza de España. This oval square is almost 50,000 m2 in size and decorated with painted ceramic tiles, fountains, bridges and baroque arcades. Don’t forget to visit the mighty Catedral & La Giralda (formerly a mosque) and struck through the alleys and squares of the former Jewish Quarter Barrio Santa Cruz, where it sticks to the cozy tapas bar.

Copenhagen

Copenhagen is the capital of Denmark and it is located on the east of the country in the Sjælland region. With about half a million inhabitants, about one tenth of all Danes live in the capital city, making it the economic center of Denmark. Whoever visits Copenhagen will notice that, as quite a big city (comparable to The Hague or Rotterdam), the city is not as busy and chaotic as you would expect. The atmosphere is mostly pretty relaxed, sometimes almost villagelike. The charm of Copenhagen is especially in the people and the combination of beautiful streets with a blend of old half-timbered houses, stately shops, beautiful old buildings and modern architecture. In this article, we will list a few spots/things to do that are definitely worth a visit!

Cycling in Copenhagen
Copenhagen is an extremely cycling-friendly city. Even local traffic generally takes into account the many cyclists who are on the public road. The bicycle is for the locals, in particular, a cheap means of transport that avoids parking and parking costs. For tourists, it is an excellent way to explore the city of Copenhagen. Some accommodations rent bicycles, but you can also use the free bicycles that the city makes available during the period April to October!

At more than one hundred bicycle parking centers you can pick up a bike and return it. To get a bike, you must pay a small deposit. There are now more than two thousand bikes available. The cycling project makes Copenhagen an important bicycle city, which can be compared with other “bicycle cities” such as Amsterdam and Berlin.

Nyhavn
One of Copenhagen’s most atmospheric places is Nyhavn, a small harbor with houses in many different colors. The chances are that if you open a book or open a website about Copenhagen, this part of the city is shown on the picture. Nyhavn is the city’s hotspot on sunny spring and summer days, where people come to eat and drink. Also, the harbor is the starting point of the cruise boats that cruise you along Copenhagen. Although the name Nyhavn literally means “New Port”, it is not really new anymore. The harbor was dug out by prisoners of the war between Denmark and Sweden (1657-1658).

Little Mermaid
Possibly the biggest tourist attraction of Copenhagen is the statue of The Little Mermaid, based on the story of Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen. The statue has a height of only 1.25 meters (!) and has a weight of just 175 kilograms. The statue was created by Edvard Eriksen and it was officially unveiled on August 23, 1913. Since then, the image of the little mermaid has sadly been the target of vandalism several times.

Tivoli
The Tivoli Theme Park is located in the center of Copenhagen, just near the Central Station and the town hall. It was established in 1843 and with about four million visitors a year, it is Denmark’s most popular theme park. To visit the park, you must pay an entrance fee. In addition to the loose day tickets you can also buy Tivoli season tickets. Unlike many other theme parks, the entrance ticket to Tivoli does not entitle you to free participation in attractions. The best moment to visit Tivoli is during the evening. The many lights make the park just so special. In the summer months, you can also dine outside and have a drink on the terraces located in Tivoli.


So that are basically the hotspots of Copenhagen. Feel free to watch this video that “A Brit and a Broad” p
ut on YouTube. It gives a good view one of the hippest cities in Scandinavia.

Budapest


My trip to Budapest
In August 2016, I went to Budapest with three friends and I would like to tell you all what I have done and been through. So let’s start with some general information. Budapest is the capital of Hungary, making it the country’s economic and cultural center. It is actually a merger of the two cities of Buda and Pest. Buda is the most historic part of the city, while Pest is more modern. These two districts are located on one side of the Danube river. In two centuries, Budapest has grown from a fifty thousand inhabitant to a metropolis where nearly two million inhabitants live. With over 4 million visitors a year, Budapest is by far the most important tourist destination in Hungary. Hungary is not part of the eurozone, which means they pay with another currency. You have to change your euro’s (or pounds, krona, et cetera) to the Florint!

Sziget festival

The main reason why we went to Budapest was the Sziget festival. This annual event is one of the largest music festivals in Europe and lasts one week. The festival is held at a unique location, on an island in the Danube! There is a whole bunch of famous artists and DJs such as John Newman, David Guetta, Sia, Hardwell, Afrojack, Rihanna and many more! There are about 50 stages, all of them representing a music genre. We paid about 300 euro per person. This includes 7 nights on the camp site and access to the festival. The camp site is a bit basic and you shouldn’t expect too much of it. It is very cozy, sometimes a little too cozy. The first days at the Sziget Festival I barely slept. After a few days of Sziget festival you get used to it and you will sleep delicious. The Sziget festival celebrates its 25th edition this year and will take place from 9 to 16 August. In 2016, the festival attracted about 500,000 visitors and it is expected to be even more this year. Are you convinced? Just check out the link for more information and tickets: http://en.szigetfestival.com/.

Budapest
We have also visited the capital itself. We did a cycle tour, leaded by a guide. He told us all the ins and outs of Budapest. After the cycle tour, we continued to bath house Szechinyi. This is the most famous bath house of Europe and there is a chance that you have seen a photo or movie on the internet. The bath house was built in 1913 and it is located in the city park. The bath house includes 15 indoor pools and 3 large outdoor pools. The outdoor pools have a temperature of 38 degrees, really relaxing! In addition, you can head to the sauna or to one of the steam rooms. We also visited the Fisherman’s Bastion. This is a well known building in Budapest. It was built between the years 1895 and 1902. Formerly fishermen lived there and they held fishing markets. It is told that it is one of the best places to see the city from above. We can tell you, it’s really a breathtaking sight! The entrance is free. There is a restaurant to get some food or drinks.

Tips for a trip to Budapest
1. No visit to the Hungarian capital is complete without having a meal in one of the numerous Hungarian restaurants in Budapest. We have been to Búsuló Juhász restaurant: here you will find dishes like goulash and Hungarian Venison ragout with porcini. Don’t forget to give tips when eating out. The tip is usually 10% of the total price.
2. Avoid taxis at all cost. According to TripAdvisor, a significant proportion of taxis have no licence or insurance, manipulate their meters, attempt to rip off tourists whenever possible, and even engage in physical violence If you take a taxi. I have no experience with that myself. I used the tram and the subway. It is pretty cheap and it brings you within a few minutes to anywhere you like!
3. As told before, you have to change your local currency to the Hungarian Florint. If you need fast cash, you will get the worst deals at the airport upon arrival, at your hotel and other stores if you are visiting a popular tourist location. Your bank’s ATM network is the best option. This way, you avoid paying huge fees.

Gallery

The Szechinyi bath house

 

The Fisherman’s Bastion

Zakynthos island

Zakynthos is the third largest Greek Island in the Ionian Sea, located in the south west of Greece. At Zakynthos you will find many cozy old villages, beautiful beaches, clear seawater and steep rocky walls. Zakynthos is rich in nature and is famous for the ‘Caretta Caretta’ turtle. In southern coastal towns, this endangered sea turtle is still seen regularly.

Zakynthos is great for snorkeling.
In the bright blue waters there is a treasure of plants, fascinating fish and maybe you even see a turtle swimming past. Another important water sport on the island is surfing. Tourism has developed the most in the city of Laganas. Here you will find a range of shops, bars and restaurants serving authentic tzatziki or gyros.

The capital of the island, Zakynthos city, is an ancient city in which you can recognize many Italian influences. The island has an interesting mix of Italian and Greek architecture. In the city you will also find several museums such as the Byzantine Museum and the Solomos Museum, where you can find cultural and historical stories and facts about the island. The higher Venetian Kastro (fort) rises high above the city and forms a landmark on the island, from which you have a magnificent view. Zakynthos is an impressive Greek holiday destination.

Eurovision Song Contest

The first and second Semi Final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 have come to a close. Ten acts from each Semi Final have gone through to Saturday’s Grand Final and join the so-called ‘Big Five’ — France, Germany, Italy, Spain and United Kingdom — and Host Country, Ukraine. The picture below shows the running order of the Grand Final!

Voting system
To get your favorite participant to the winning position, you can vote using the telephone, SMS and through the official Eurovision app!

First, each national professional jury will award 1 to 8, 10 and 12 points to their favorites. In the grand final, these points will be announced by the spokespersons from all participating countries. Based on the televoting, each country will award a second set of 1 to 8, 10 and 12 points to the ten songs they like the most. The televoting points from all countries will be combined and announced by the hosts, starting with the country receiving the fewest points from the public and ending with the country receiving the highest number of points from the televoting so the winner will only be known at the very end of the show.

Favorites
According to the bookmakers, Italy and Portugal are most likely to win the Eurovision Song Contest. Other iconic songs are Yodel it! (Romania), Hey Mamma (Moldavo) and Lights and Shadows (The Netherlands). Who’s your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!