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20 City Break Destinations for 2022

Split, Croatia

With new routes announced from many Irish airports, as well as some old favourites, I have hand-picked some of the best city break destinations for 2022. 

I’m a big fan of city breaks. I love how much you can discover in a new city such a short space of time. However, if you’re not one for pounding the pavements and covering an entire city on foot, settling down with a coffee and people watching in a town square can be just as enjoyable. We are fortunate to have many of Europe’s top city break destinations available from a variety of Irish airports this year. I have picked my top 20 to inspire your next break away. 

 

 

 

1. Matera – Italy

 

 
 
 
 
 
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This Italian gem might be an unknown quantity for some of you, but believe me it needs to be on your radar. Some may have seen it in the opening scene of the new James Bond movie – No Time To Die, but it is even more impressive in person.

Located close to Bari in the heel of Italy, it is one of the most fascinating cities I have visited. The old town or ‘Sassi’ is full of boutique hotels, Airbnb’s and restaurants, built inside ancient caves.
 

 

 
It has a remarkable rags to riches story – to go from being Italy’s poorest city to the European Capital of Culture for 2019 is quite a feat. Located just 50 minutes from Bari Airport, which is serviced from Dublin with Ryanair, it is easily accesible. This is one of my top city break destinations for 2022.

Check out my travel guide to a weekend in Matera here.

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2. Copenhagen – Denmark

Sarah Slattery, The Travel Expert, takes a cycling tour of Copenhagen

I am always surprised by the amount of people who haven’t visited Copenhagen, and with Ryanair, SAS and Norwegian all flying to Copenhagen from Ireland, the competition is rife for cheap flights!
 

 

 
Copenhagen’s compact size makes it easy to navigate, and it is perfect for a short city break. The colourful Nyhavn canal is sure to impress you, as will Copenhagen’s great food scene. Tivoli Gardens is a beautiful year-round attraction that children will love, making Copenhagen one of the most popular city breaks for families.

Check out my guide to Copenhagen for some more info about this great city.

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3. Pisa, Tuscany – Italy

weekend break in Tuscany

While Pisa is not one of my favourite city break destinations, it is superbly located to explore the rolling hills of Tuscany – one of my favourite places to visit. Pisa is served from Dublin and Cork airports this summer, and airfares are great value.
 

 

 
There is usually a bus service to Florence following a Ryanair flight, but I recommend hiring a car to make the most of your trip.  San Gimignano is one of Italy’s most beautiful walled towns and is located just over an hour from Pisa.

There are many more towns and villages to discover in Tuscany, but make sure you save time to visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa. It is located close to the airport so it is best seen when you arrive, or before you leave to fly home.

Read: Top towns and cities to visit in Tuscany

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4. Palma – Majorca

 

 
 
 
 
 
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The cultural city of Palma ticks all boxes if you are looking for city break destinations from Dublin, Cork, Shannon or Ireland West. Don’t miss a trip to Palma’s cathedral, and a stroll along the marina is a must in the evenings. Palma is also a great choice for a shopping break, and is an ideal launchpad to explore the rest of the island.
 

 

 
Read: Majorca holidays – how to choose the right resort for you

 
 
 
 
 
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If you are looking for something a little more exclusive, take the tram to the port of Soller or enjoy a day trip to Valldemossa – it is one of the prettiest villages in Majorca.

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5. Alghero, Sardinia – Italy

sardinia holidays

Sardinia is a great choice if you are looking for a beach / city combination. With cobbled stone streets, trendy boutiques and a great food scene, Alghero is a pleasure to stroll around. And if you are lucky with the weather, there is a gorgeous sandy beach on your doorstep! Alghero has its own airport, and the town is  just 10 minutes from the airport, making it ideal for a short break.
 

 

 
Alghero can be reached directly from Dublin and Cork airports with Ryanair.

Read more on Sardinia holidays from Ireland

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6. London – England

 

 
 
 
 
 
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London is one of our top city break destinations. With numerous flights from most Irish airports, it can easily be enjoyed as an overnight escape or a longer city break.
 

 

 
London is extremely popular with families too, as there is a host of family attractions to choose from, including the London Eye, Legoland and the Harry Potter experience.
 
Read: Top things to do in London with kids and where to stay

 

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7. Nice – France

Best City Break Destinations for 2019 - Nice

The South of France is always a good idea, and Nice certainly deserves a place on this top city break destinations post. The flight time is only 2 hours 30 minutes from Dublin airport, and the town centre is only 4 miles from the airport, so you can be sipping cocktails on the Promenade des Anglais within a half hour of arriving in France🍸.
 

 

 
Nice has some gorgeous boutiques, amazing restaurants, and of course a fabulous long sandy beach – but that’s not all. Its location in the South of France is ideal for visiting Cannes,  St Tropez, Monaco, you can even pop into Italy on the train for your lunch!

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8. Porto – Portugal

weekend in Porto

I loved our trip to Porto and would highly recommend Porto for a city break. As well as being home to a UNESCO World Heritage site, it is packed with colourful buildings, delightful streets, and has a great food and wine scene.  

Check out my guide to Porto to see why it is one of the best city break destinations for 2022.

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9. Greek Islands getaway

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Up until a few years ago you had to book a package holiday for one or two weeks if you wanted to visit the Greek Islands. We are so fortunate now to have a selection of Greek islands to choose from, with most flights operating two or three times per week.

Corfu is served from Dublin and Shannon airports, while Santorini, Crete, Rhodes are served from Dublin airport. There are also flights to Thessaloniki and Athens from Dublin airport.
 

 

 
Corfu Town and Rhodes Town are ideal city break destinations, they both offer pretty old towns with gorgeous sea views.

Rhodes is the largest of the Dodecanese Islands in Greece and boasts a rich historical past mixed with modern resorts and luxurious hotels. Rhodes Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage City and the Colossus of Rhodes is one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Don’t miss a trip to the whitewashed, picture perfect village of Lindos too.

Lindos, Rhodes

Read: Rhodes holidays, where to stay for couples, families and groups

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If you prefer a more low key vibe, the old town of Chania in Crete might suit you. Famous for its 14th century Venetian harbour and its waterfront restaurants, it has an Italian feel, but without the crowds.  There are numerous boat trips departing from the harbour too, including day trips to Santorini. We holidayed here a few years ago and loved it.

Read: Top things to do near Chania

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10. Edinburgh – Scotland

Edinburgh from Ireland West Airport

Edinburgh is a super choice for a city break, and it is accessible from Cork, Shannon, Dublin and Ireland West airports. It’s medieval old town and stunning castle are a pleasure to explore.
 

 

 
Edinburgh is easy to navigate and is one of those cities that you can’t help but love. Don’t miss Arthur’s Seat in Holyrood Park for the best views, and make sure to visit the pubs on Rose Street for the ultimate Edinburgh experience. 

Read: Top 10 holidays from Ireland West Airport

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11. Lisbon, Portugal

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Lisbon is one Europe’s top city break destinations, and after my recent visit I now know why. It has a beautiful old town, with pastel-coloured buildings with terracotta rooftops as far as the eye can see. Lisbon is best explored on foot, but if you don’t fancy walking, there are delightful old trams and tuk tuks available to help you enjoy this great city. 

Read: Top 10 things to do in Lisbon

Read: Where to stay in Lisbon – my top 10 Lisbon hotels

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12. Rome – Italy

CHRISTMAS GIFT IDEAS FROM THE TRAVEL EXPERT
Rome is always a great choice for a city break. There are ancient wonders at every corner, amazing shopping on the Via del Corso, and let’s not forget the food. The home of pizza, pasta and gelato, Rome is a feast for the senses.

Rome is served from Dublin airport with Aer Lingus and Ryanair.

Read: Where to stay in Rome, my top picks of 3, 4 and 5-star hotels

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13. Split – Croatia

Split, one of the best city break destinations for 2022

I am a massive lover of Croatia. I have visited many times, but have yet to visit the seaside city of Split, which is actually the second largest city in Croatia.
 

 

 
The old town is home to numerous historical sites, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site – Diocletian Palace, and there is a sandy beach within walking distance if you fancy a swim or some dining options with sea views.

Aer Lingus fly to Split from Dublin airport.

Read: The best places to stay in Croatia

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14. Barcelona – Spain

Park Güell, Barcelona

It’s no surprise that Barcelona is one of the world’s best city break destinations. It’s got amazing architecture, mouthwatering cuisine, buzzing nightlife and excellent shopping, and let’s not forget its location on the Mediterranean Sea. 
 

 

 
Barcelona can be reached from Dublin, Cork, Shannon and Ireland West airports.

Read: Where to stay in Barcelona and the top things to do

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15. Amsterdam – Netherlands

city breaks in Amsterdam

With Aer Lingus, Ryanair and KLM all flying to Amsterdam from Dublin, and Aer Lingus also flying from Cork, there has never been a better time to visit. City breaks in Amsterdam are very much on trend in 2022, from top class museums to cycle trails along its canals, you will be spoilt for things to do.

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16. Bordeaux – France

Saint-Emilion close to Bordeaux in France
Saint-Emilion

Bordeaux is France’s sixth largest city and boasts a massive World Heritage site, stunning architecture as well as being one of France’s top gastronomic and wine capitals. 

You could easily spend a few days here and not leave the city. However, it would be a shame not to explore the picturesque villages and charming Châteaux on the Bordeaux wine trail, Saint-Emilion in particular is a little piece of heaven.
 

 

 
Bordeaux can be reached from Dublin and Cork airports or you could choose to take the ferry and bring home some wine!

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17. Dubrovnik – Croatia

Dubrovnik

The medieval city of Dubrovnik should be on everyone’s wish list. It is so well preserved and looks like something straight out of a fairytale.

There are many great hotel choices both inside and outside the walled city. I like to stay on the outskirts and catch a water taxi to the centre in the evening time, and watch the sun set over the city walls.
 

 

 
Dubrovnik can be reached direct from Dublin airport with Aer Lingus and Ryanair, and from Cork airport with Aer Lingus.

Read my top tips on discovering Dubrovnik

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18. Venice – Italy

Top things to do in Venice and where to stay
The unique floating city of Venice has to be visited at least once in a lifetime. There are so many iconic sights, that simply wandering around its streets and canals will captivate you. However, sipping a latte on St Mark’s Square and taking a gondola ride through the canals have to be done too!
 

 

 
Venice can be reached from Dublin airport with Aer Lingus and Ryanair, and from Cork airport with Ryanair.

Read: Top things to do in Venice and where to stay

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19. Athens – Greece

Best City Break Destinations - Athens

Athens is a place that is on my own wish list this summer. I can’t wait to see the Acropolis, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world – I am told it is visible from all over the city.
 

 

 
Athens is a tale of two cities, with a modern city below offering trendy shops, top class restaurants and a cosmopolitan vibe. If you fancy a stroll along the beach, there are plenty outside the city to choose from, just a short bus ride away.

Athens can be reached from Dublin airport with Aer Lingus and Aegean Airlines.

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20. Washington – USA

best american holidays from Ireland

Washington’s monument trail is like an open-air museum. You would want to be made of stone if the Lincoln, Jefferson and Vietnam Veterans Memorials didn’t impress you. The silence at Arlington Cemetery is one of those experiences you never forget, and of course there’s always The White House…
 

 

 
Washington is also home to the Smithsonian Institution, which is the world’s largest museum, and arguably the most interesting. You will find the National Air & Space Museum here too, and what I love about Washington is all of these are free. It is rare to find a city break where you don’t feel obliged to fork out for entrance tickets to top attractions. 

Washington can be reached from Dublin airport with Aer Lingus and United Airlines.
 

Read: Top 10 American holidays from Ireland

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We are blessed with the amount of cheap city break destinations from Ireland at our disposal. A few days away and a change of scenery can make all the difference, and many of the above options shouldn’t break the bank. Go somewhere new in 2022 and choose one of these top city break destinations for your next adventure.
 

 

 
Please note that some of the links in this post on best city break destinations from Ireland are affiliate links, where I  receive a small commission if a booking is made, but at no additional charge to you. 

 

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October Bank Holiday Weekend in Lisbon, 3 Nights from €283

Lisbon Portugal

A beautiful coastal city renowned for terrific sightseeing and a great food scene, why not spend the October Bank Holiday weekend in Lisbon? 

 

Lisbon is finally getting the praise it deserves and it is slowly becoming one of Europe’s top city break destinations.  The city is very easy to navigate and if you don’t fancy walking it there are fantastic old trams that will bring you around all the highlights. There is plenty to see in Lisbon itself, but if you want to travel, you can take the train to the coastal towns of Cascais or Estoril or explore the UNESCO world heritage city of Sintra. For more information on Lisbon and it’s coast, read my blog.

easter weekend in Lisbon
 

 

 
There are many flight options available so you can choose to fly out with TAP Air Portugal,  Ryanair or Aer Lingus, depending on your preference of flight times. I have priced this deal flying out with TAP Air Portugal, at the time of issue this price was just €88. However, you will see many more options when you click on the link below.
 

 

 
I found a great deal staying in the centrally located São Bento Hotel, with breakfast included. Its modern décor and super service ensure excellent reviews from guests on Tripadvisor. This hotel is an ideal choice to spend the October bank holiday weekend in Lisbon. 
 

 

 
Fly direct from Dublin on Saturday 23rd October with TAP Air Portugal and return Tuesday 26th October with Ryanair and secure this great deal for just €283 per person, including breakfast!
 

 

 
I have linked flights to Skyscanner below for convenience, however I recommend booking directly on the airlines website, rather than using a third party site. There are many other flight options available. The hotel quoted below includes the supplement for free cancellation, if cancelled by 21st October. 
 

 

 
View flights here €112pp

View hotel here €171pp – refundable rate

 

Want a different hotel?

Check out: Where to stay in Lisbon – my top 10 Lisbon hotels

 

 

 

 

Prices are correct at the time of issue but are subject to change. Please note some of my best travel deals include affiliate links where I receive a small commission if a booking is made.

 

Sarah

 

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Weekend Break in Amsterdam – 3 Nights in 4-Star Hotel & Flights – €254pp

canal-2659062_1920

The New Year has arrived and with that comes a lust for new experiences and adventure. I have found a brilliant offer for a weekend break in Amsterdam that should fuel those urges even more.

 

Amsterdam is a city with an incredible aesthetic and history. The hotel for the offer I have found is the 4-Star Bilderburg Hotel Jan Luyken and this places you right in the historical heart of the city. Within walking distance of your hotel you will find the Riijksmuseum, The Van Gogh Museum, The Heineken Experience and the powerful Anne Frank Museum. The latter two are a good half an hour walk away but this is definitely manageable in Amsterdam on a nice day.
 
Weekend Break in Amsterdam

 

Also close to your hotel you will find Vondelpark. If you’re looking to get the full Dutch experience, you simply have to rent out a bike and cycle around to explore every corner of this beautiful park.
 
The hotel has excellent ratings on Expedia; scoring 4.3/5 from over 1700 reviews. This offer is for March when the temperature starts to become nice and mild making it perfect for a city break. The flights for the offer are direct with Ryanair and the dates are from Thursday the 7th to Sunday the 10th, but if these dates don’t suit simply edit the search via the link below, to suit your requirements. The price of €254pp covers the cost of the hotel and flights.

 

 

Prices are correct at time of issue but are subject to change. Note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links, where The Travel Expert receives a small commission if a booking is made.

 

 

 

The Travel Expert Team

 

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