Exploring new cities is easier said than done when balancing your busy schedule with finding the perfect destination.

However, with the whole of Europe just at the doorstep of the UK, there are endless places to visit that take less than a 3-hour journey time to reach.

Whether travelling by train, plane or even car, there’s a whole wealth of characteristic European cities waiting to be explored.

So, you don’t have to search for the perfect spot, we’ve picked some of the top five that make the perfect weekend break.

The best European cities for a weekend getaway

Swindon Advertiser:

Budapest, Hungary

The historic city of Budapest offers endless activities to enjoy over a weekend.

Whether you start the day bright and early or stay out until sunrise, you’ll never be bored.

Less than a two-hour flight away from the UK, you can enjoy a tranquil walk along the Danube River.

You can also take in the sights with one of the many boat tours on offer or look at the historic city from above by taking to the hills.

Swindon Advertiser: The Trevi Fountain in Rome.The Trevi Fountain in Rome. (Image: Canva)

Rome, Italy

Rome is a bucket list destination for many and is not to be missed.

Vistors can enjoy the incredible pasta, pizza, wine and coffee before exploring the Roman landmarks.

Pack some good walking shoes and make the most of this ancient city with tours of the likes of the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.

Be sure to bring a few extra coins to make a wish at the Trevi Fountain too.

Swindon Advertiser: Visit Hamburg and see views of the clocktower.Visit Hamburg and see views of the clocktower. (Image: Canva)

Hamburg, Germany

Away from Germany’s capital Berlin, Hamburg offers endless fun, activities and adventures that you can reach as in little as 3 hours by flying.

The city has a strong architecture, it’s a great destination if you want to try some rich fish cuisine, with St Pauli Fischmarkt at the centre and a tour down the port of Hamburg.

Swindon Advertiser: Shop along one of Dublin's impressive highstreets. Shop along one of Dublin's impressive highstreets. (Image: Canva)

Dublin, Ireland

Less than an hour and a half away by plane, Dublin is great if you're not a fan of flying since it's accessible by ferry.

The busy city is great if you like to enjoy a pub visit or two along your travels since there are plenty of great pubs featuring live music.

Dublin offers more than pubs with bold museums, landmarks and rich art culture.

There's also an impressive spacious park which is perfect to enjoy a summer's day in.

Swindon Advertiser: See the impressive sites of Barcelonan. See the impressive sites of Barcelonan. (Image: Canva)

Barcelona, Spain

If you want some sunshine and sea for your weekend getaway, Barcelona has the best of both worlds with its urban cityscape and sandy beaches.

With tourist hotspots including the Sagrada Familia, Park Guell, Casa Batllo and more, Barcelona the city is a wonderful place for food with endless options to enjoy paella.

Use discount code ‘NQ15’ to get 15%ǂ off travel insurance

ǂ Discount applies to base premium only. Terms & conditions apply.