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Europe’s most romantic city breaks

For couples keen to sip Champagne while gently cruising down Saint Petersburg’s canals or spend the weekend wining and dining, we’ve found five ideal cities to visit for your next romantic city break, as recommended by other travellers.*

Zadar, Croatia

Dance to the sounds of the Sea Organ as the sun sets

Dance to the sounds of the Sea Organ as the sun sets

With a sunny climate, little to no crowds and sunsets once described by Alfred Hitchcock as the most beautiful in the world, Zadar is not to be overlooked when planning your next romantic city break. Spend the day sightseeing ancient ruins or relax under the shade of the trees in Queen Jelena Madijevka Park. When the sun starts to set, head down to the promenade to listen to the Sea Organ, an architectural sound art object that creates music as waves crash upon a set of tubes and marble steps – a song that harmonises with the soothing orange and pastel-pink sunset. When dusk falls, make your way back to Apartments Donat.

Tallinn, Estonia

Take in the view of Tallinn's medieval Old Town

Take in the view of Tallinn's medieval Old Town

Full of secret passageways and narrow alleys, Tallinn is an intriguing place. Happily get lost as you navigate the narrow, cobbled streets of the medieval Old Town, with its pastel, red-roofed houses and towering churches. In the evening, go beyond the medieval walls to experience the city’s burgeoning food scene. With a recent influx of restaurants, cafés and bars here, you’ll quickly find somewhere special to spend the evening. Come home to rest at the Radisson Blu Sky Hotel.

Saint Petersburg, Russia

Cruise through the network of canals and rivers in Saint Petersburg

Cruise through the network of canals and rivers in Saint Petersburg

Often referred to as the ‘Venice of the North’, Saint Petersburg’s network of canals and rivers run throughout the city making it an ideal opportunity for a private boat tour. As your skipper cruises you around the city, sit back and sip your flute of Champagne. Once back on land, you can either climb to the top of the Smolny Cathedral for the spectacular panorama or spend the evening watching the ever graceful Mariinsky Ballet company at the Mariinsky Theatre. Once your evening comes to an end, make your way back to Anastasia Mini-Hotel, which is just 600 metres away from the theatre.

Vilnius, Lithuania

Start your romantic city break exploring the historic centre

Start your romantic city break exploring the historic centre

Start your romantic city break strolling hand-in-hand down the cobbled streets of Vilnius’ Old Town. The songs of buskers playing the piano accordion often echo off the 16th-century villas and alleyways, making you feel like you’re in a fairytale. Once you’ve explored the historic centre, mix it up by visiting the young and creative neighbourhood of Užupis. Either sit on the banks of the river and people-watch or enjoy a rosé at one of the many bars in the area. In the evening, feast on seasonal and local produce at restaurant ‘U’. After dessert, head back to the connecting hotel, Urbihop Hotel.

Thessaloniki, Greece

Sit by the old port for an impromptu picnic

Sit by the old port for an impromptu picnic

Known for its outdoor coffee culture, Thessaloniki is ideal for the caffeine-loving couple. When the sun is shining, do as the locals do and visit a café that faces the waterfront, grabbing a seat at an outdoor table and ordering a refreshing frappé. Next, head to the city’s oldest public market, Kapani, where you’ll find abundant traditional local food and can gather some fresh produce for an impromptu picnic – then make your way to the old port to sit, eat and enjoy the ocean views. After a day of eating, drinking and exploring, unwind at the Luxury Apartments Aristotelous in the heart of the city.

** The data scientists at Booking.com looked at the highest-rated destinations (each having a minimum of 100 reviews) for ‘romance’ by couples.