City Slicking: Top Tips For Planning An Unbeatable Urban Adventure
City breaks are a brilliant way to see more of the world, experience new cultures, learn different languages and enjoy the thrills and spills of city life. If you live for weekends away, or you’re looking to organise a romantic break or a getaway with friends, here are some top tips for planning an unbeatable urban adventure.
Unless you’ve got your heart set on a location, it’s always fun to explore a range of ideas and to consider a few contenders before you make a decision. There are several factors to think about when narrowing down the options, including the type of holiday you’re interested in, travel time, your budget, and how you want to spend your time when you get there. Some cities, most commonly the tourist hot spots, are much more expensive than others, and there are places that offer very different types of trip. You might want to go all-out when it comes to cultural experiences, or you may be looking for a destination that allows you to combine chilling out and catching rays with sightseeing. Once you have a rough idea of how much you want to spend, you know what you want to do when you get there, and you have a flight time in mind, you can start ruling some cities out. If you don’t want to spend hours on a plane, for example, cities like Madrid, Rome, Prague, Amsterdam, Krakow and Athens are likely to appeal more than New York, Los Angeles, or Toronto. If you fancy a trip to the beach, look at options like Barcelona, Valencia, Lisbon, and Nice.
Choosing a destination
The cost of flights varies hugely according to the destination, the season, the day of the week, and the airline. Many popular city break locations are relatively cheap to get to, but it’s always worth comparing prices and trying to be as flexible as possible when it comes to dates. Use comparison sites and low fare calculators to check times and prices, and consider whether you really need extras, such as a hold bag or priority boarding. If you plan to park at the airport, book in advance and sign up for email newsletters to take advantage of discounts.
There is a growing number of accommodation options available to travellers, so it’s worth comparing apartments, hotels, guest houses and home rentals before you make a decision. If you’re going to a very popular tourist city, you’ll pay a premium to stay near the main attractions. If you’re on a budget, look for hotels near metro stations or bus routes. This way, you’ll save on hotels, but you’ll still be within easy reach of the areas you want to explore. If you’re travelling with a group of friends, or you’re going on holiday with family, it’s worth pricing up townhouses or apartments to see if its cheaper to split the cost or to book individual hotel rooms. I'd do some research into where you plan to stay, so when you come back from a long day of city slicking with friends or family you have some comfortable amenities like cable tv or a plush bed - because you should always have comforts when you're on holiday.
Planning an itinerary
If you’re counting down the days until you jet off on holiday, there’s every chance that you’ve got a rough idea of what you want to see. The trouble with city breaks is that often, there’s a huge amount of things to do within a limited time period. While it’s wonderful to amble around, especially in places like Venice, it is wise to plan a loose itinerary before you go. This will enable you to tick off the attractions you’re desperate to visit and it will also save on travel time. Organise your days based on the part of the city you’re visiting and leave time to wander around at leisure. If you’ve got a few days, it’s also worth exploring further afield and looking at day trips. If you’re staying in the Croatian city of Split, for example, don’t miss the opportunity to catch a bus to Krka National Park, which is famed for its vivid blue-green pools and beautiful waterfalls. If you’re staying in Paris, you could spend the day at Disney, and if you’re visiting Ljubljana, it’s well worth taking a trip to stunning Lake Bled. If you are booking tours, read reviews, use secure websites to make reservations, and choose reputable agencies.
If you enjoy city slicking, and you’re hoping to get away in the near future, hopefully, this handy guide will come in useful. Explore location options based on how far you want to travel and what you want to see and do, compare prices on flights and accommodation, and do some research to help you plan a rough itinerary.