You could spend days trawling the internet for affordable European destinations packed with atmospheric districts and impressive architectural landmarks… but you don’t need to; we’ve done it for you!
From photogenic Prague to laid-back Ljubljana, these are the best cheap city breaks beyond the border, courtesy of HomeAway.
There’s a lot to love about Ljubljana
Slovenia’s capital keeps a relatively low profile, but you’d be surprised at the splendid attractions it has in store. Enjoy a relaxed day of sightseeing in the pedestrianised city centre, where you can see and cross the gorgeous bridges – such as Triple Bridge and Dragon Bridge – over the Ljubljanica river. If you’re up for a short but pretty steep hike, skip the ticketed funicular and walk to the hilltop Ljubljana Castle, whose courtyard and chapel are free to explore. Bring a book and a picnic lunch to peaceful Tivoli Park, a sprawling green space dotted with fountains, flower beds and outdoor gyms, or make your way to Metelkova for street art and alternative culture.
Prague is perfect for budget-conscious travellers
Prague isn’t just one of Europe’s most beautiful and beloved capital cities, it’s also one of the cheapest places to visit. Start your sightseeing in the Old Town and watch the intricate Astronomical Clock chime on the hour, then admire the twin towers of the Gothic-style Tyn Church – you’ll quickly see why Prague is called the ‘City of a Hundred Spires’. Head over to Mala Strana via the historic Charles Bridge, stopping to see the baroque statues that line what was previously the only crossing over the River Vlatva. You can explore Prague Castle’s grounds and gardens for free, or walk up to Petrin Hill for unparalleled views of this enthralling city.
Get value for your money on Vilnius city breaks
The capital city of Lithuania is a delight to explore, especially since prices of food, lodging and public transport are reasonable and you’re not constantly worrying about your travel expenses piling up. The UNESCO-listed Old Town is big but easy to navigate on foot, and its key attractions include the neoclassical Vilnius Cathedral and the Vilnius castle complex. Breathe in the bohemian air as you explore the independent Uzupis district’s galleries, pubs and artist’s workshops, and give the unconventional Uzupis constitution a quick read when you come across the plaques displaying it in various languages. Museum admission in Vilnius is generally cheap as well; fascinating, if possibly unnerving, sites include the Museum of Occupations and Freedom Fights, housed in the former KGB headquarters.
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