We may earn a commission for products purchased through some links in this article

Best European city breaks and short stays 2022: Where to go and where to stay

May the holiday season commence!

If you have been itching to book that city break you've been thinking about for ages – or perhaps have been pondering a short but sweet weekend away – then this is your sign to go. From Paris to Rome, Amsterdam to Copenhagen, there are many incredible European city break destinations to explore.

Whether you want to soak up some beautiful scenery, indulge in delicious cuisine or absorb the cultural heritage of the metropolis – then we have got you covered. We've rounded up the best European city breaks for you to discover which are ideal for impromptu holidays, romantic vacations, girls' trips away and more. 

DISCOVER: The best luggage brands to invest in for your staycation or holiday abroad this summer

MORE: Jet2's top city breaks might surprise you

So pack your bags because these offers are just too tempting to turn down…

Madrid, Spain

What to do in Madrid

There's plenty to explore in the Spanish capital. Browse the Prado Museum’s works to see paintings by Goya, Velázquez and other Spanish masters or enjoy a traditional flamenco show. Unwind in Retiro Park or get stuck into the action by strolling along the Gran Vía.

Where to stay in Madrid

Ocean Drive Madrid 

Housed in the former Real Cinema building in Madrid, this fresh and modern urban hotel is guaranteed to be the best choice for a city getaway. Situated in Plaza de Isabel II, in front of the Opera Palace, a few steps from the Royal Palace, Plaza Mayor, Puerta del Sol and Gran Vía, it is strategically located for guests who want to be in the heart of the action in Spain’s capital city. 

The hotel has a contemporary design, elegant architecture and the most advanced and sustainable technology where you can expect customer-oriented staff willing to help you throughout your stay. Don't miss their on-site tapas along with different rice dishes and grilled fish and meats that are served in Mar Mía, the hotel's restaurant, with different areas to suit different moods, including a terrace right onto the square.

To book, visit ocean-drive-madrid.com

MORE: 7 best holiday destinations to travel like the Beckhams

Paris, France

What to do in Paris

Parisians are spoilt for choice when it comes to eateries across the city, though few match the impressively minimal carbon footprint of Cojean, the first fast-food restaurant to achieve B-Corp status. Trust us when we say Carette's chocolat chaud truly is unmissable, even with the €10 price tag, while Pierre Hermé is the perfect place to try macarons. 

Paris may be the city of romance, but it's also home to some of the best vintage stores in Europe. If thrifting is your style, Celia Darling Vintage for charming fits sure to get you snapped in a Parisian street style blog, or head to Le Marais for an eclectic mix of vintage boutiques and specialist thrift stores to uplevel your sustainable style.

Where to stay in Paris

A stay at 25hours Hotel Terminus Nord is an absolute must for those wishing to immerse themselves in the City of Lights. Located just a mere stumble away from the Eurostar platform in Gare du Nord, this hotel serves the ultimate practicality and convenience for a dreamy weekend getaway. 

Rain showers, a safe, minibar, UE Boom Bluetooth speaker and a breath-taking view of the Gare du Nord as well as Montmartre and Sacré Coeur from charming Juliet balconies are what make this hotel feel exceptionally special.

To book, visit booking.com

Copenhagen, Denmark 

What to do in Copenhagen

Denmark's capital city has lots to offer. Peruse the halls of the country's largest art gallery, SMK, which houses an incredible selection of art or take a peek behind the scenes of the Danish Royal Family at the Amalienborg Palace. See Denmark's most iconic statue of The Little Mermaid which was inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s famous fairy tale or escape the tourist crowds and head up the Round Tower.

Where to stay in Copenhagen 

25hours Hotel Indre By

Set in Copenhagen and with The Round Tower reachable within 90 metres, 25hours Hotel Indre By offers express check-in and check-out, allergy-free rooms, a restaurant, free WiFi throughout the property and a fitness centre. Featuring a bar, the hotel is close to several noted attractions, around 450 yards from The David Collection, 550 yards from Rosenborg Castle and 550 yards from Torvehallerne.

To book, visit booking.com

Prague, Czech Republic

What to do in Prague

Prague is a bustling city with plenty to offer. Take a trip to Prague Castle, sit bankside at the Vltava River and gaze at the Prague Astronomical Clock. Indulge in some classic Czech beer and wine with a brewery tour of the city - or feast upon some tradition Czech dishes in the beating heart of the old town. Check Jet2 City Breaks for some of the best flight deals.

Where to stay in Prague

Falkensteiner Boutique Hotel Prague 

At the newly refurbished Falkensteiner Boutique Hotel Prague you will stay in the heart of the city, just a few steps from the historic center. Wenceslas Square, the National Museum and Charles Bridge are less than 10 minutes walk from the hotel. Located in the centre of the hotel, a leafy hideaway terrace is also hidden in the courtyard, inviting you to enjoy a well-deserved happy hour in the summer sunshine.

To book, visit booking.com

Reykjavik, Iceland

What to do in Reykjavik

Make the most of your time in Iceland and visit the country's most popular attractions. Start your day early for a scenic drive around the Golden Circle, stopping at Thingvellir, Geysir Hot Spring, Gullfoss, and the Kerid volcanic crater. Whale and dolphin watching excursions are also available, in addition to traditional food tours.

Where to stay in Reykjavik

Grandi by Center Hotels 

Located a 15-minute walk from the centre, Grandi by Center Hotels is the perfect spot for exploring the city. Boasting modern decor and a large buffet breakfast with friendly staff, this hotel is surrounded by multiple popular points of interest - including Reykjavik Old Harbour, Harpa Concert Hall & Conference Centre and The Parliament House. The nearest airport is Reykjavík Domestic Airport, 2.1 miles from Grandi by Center Hotels.

To book, visit Jet2holidays

Stockholm, Sweden

What to do in Stockholm

There's much to do in Sweden's capital. This compact fairytale city offers intriguing museums and a plethora of delicious restaurant choices, in addition to unparalleled scenic tours. Sail through the 30,000-island archipelago or discover Djurgården’s serene waterside and woodland trail. Plan a trip to Hellasgården’s sauna after a beautiful hike, gasp at the incredible artworks at the panoramic art gallery Fotografiska and visit the interactive ABBA museum to hear your favourite pop tunes by the Swedish band.

Where to stay in Stockholm

Bank Hotel

Bank Hotel is situated in central Stockholm, a few minutes' walk from Strandvägen and Stureplan in the Östermalm district. Housed in a former bank building, all rooms are designed with lavish furnishings, Checkered tiles, marbled bathrooms and velvet beds make for a perfect Instagrammable opportunity.

To book, visit booking.com

Amsterdam, Netherlands

What to do in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is everything you ever imagined and more! With its labyrinthine canals and willowy Dutch-Baroque buildings, it instantly feels like stepping back in time. Juxtaposed with this backdrop, jolting you back into the present, are the thousands of cyclists whizzing past. For those wanting to tick off some of the biggest tourist attractions, you are in the perfect locale, as there's Anne Frank House, The Royal Palace on the Dam, De Negen Straatjes (The Nine Streets) shopping quarter, and the iconic Red Light District. You also have Museumplein, home to the Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh Museum, among other cultural gems.

Where to stay in Amsterdam


art'otel is for those seeking inspiration, escapism and fun as the establishment blends unique design and historic architecture with an exclusive art collection curated by a Signature Artist. Here you will discover a new side to Amsterdam through vibrant collaborations with creators at the heart of its art scene - the place certainly appeals to creatives, foodies, and art aficionados alike. But not only that, the hip hotel is conveniently located opposite Centraal Station. Despite being located in a busy area, the spacious rooms are quiet and comfortable. It's any tourist's dream as some of the biggest attractions such as the Anne Frank House, Royal Palace on the Dam, Negen Straatjes shopping quarter, and the iconic Red Light District are just minutes away. To make travelling easier, be sure to grab an I Amsterdam City Card to help make those all-important decisions.

To book, visit booking.com

Mykonos, Greece

What to do in Mykonos

Mykonos is famous for its nightlife, sandy beaches and laid-back approach and is arguably one of the most popular Greek destinations for tourists around the world. While there you will have plenty to do, from grabbing a drink at picturesque Little Venice to relaxing on one of the many sandy beaches.

Come sunset, the famous Scorpios club is a must visit too, while a day trip to the nearby island Delos is also recommended should you have time. 

Where to Stay in Mykonos 

Once in Mykonos

If you're planning a trip the Mykonos, we highly recommend you choose Once in Mykonos, to enhance your stay. 

The island's latest five-star resort boasts everything from a luxurious outdoor pool to its own private church for weddings. The staff are all incredibly friendly and welcoming and go that extra mile to help you, whether that's recommending a dish on the mouth-watering menu or giving tips on where to go and explore.

Rooms are chic and boast Jo Malone toiletries, and many even have their own private jacuzzi or pool. Each morning, guests can tuck into a buffet breakfast with everything from traditional Greek cuisine to fresh fruit, smoothies and juices. A vast pool bar and restaurant menu offers up dishes including burgers, salads and flatbreads, while light bites and salads also feature alongside a generous wine list. Make sure to save some room for the chocolate mouse with berries too - it's one of the chef's specialities. 

And before you head out into the town - which is just a short drive away - be sure to try one of the hotel's house cocktails, which are created by talented mixologists on site. 

To book, visit www.onceinmykonos.com

HELLO!'s selection is editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items our editors love and approve of. HELLO! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. To find out more visit our FAQ page.