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Looking for a City Break in Europe?

Date Published 21.07.2017
Topic Travel Insurance

Looking for a City Break in Europe? | AIG Ireland

Do you need something to look forward to this summer? How about a city break in Europe? 

To help you choose the right city for your holiday we have listed three great things to do in each one. Browse through them all below.



This eclectic city renowned for its tolerance has something to offer everyone whether you love to party, are a culture vulture or a history buff:

1) Beer tasting: although home to one of the world’s most famous beers, try some beer made on a smaller scale at a tasting tour of IJ Brewery. This brewery is also located beside one of the eight remaining windmills in the city.

2) Canal cruise: Amsterdam is almost as famous as Venice for its canals. See a different side of the city from the water on one of a range of canal tours. Top-tip: take a canal tour at twilight or after dark to see the city light up around you.

3) De Hallen: a visit to this centre of media, culture, fashion, food and craft is a wonderful way to get off the beaten track. Spend some time with the locals who frequent the delicious food hall and cinema located in an old tram station dating back to 1902.



Known as the city of lights, Paris has lots to offer, whether you are traveling with a partner, friend or solo. It’s a wonderful city if food, art or architecture is your thing:

1) Musee d’Orsay: although many visitors rush to the Lourve to see the Mona Lisa, there is a gallery across the Seine that is much more manageable if you only have a few hours. Housed in a former train station, the Museé d’Orsay is home to many well-known masterpieces including Van Gough’s 1888 Starry Night over the Rhone and a collection of impressionist painting that won’t fail to impress. Top-tip: entrance is free the first Sunday of every month.

2) Montmartre: looking for the Paris you have seen in the films? Chances are you will find it in Montmartre.Although the streets around the Sacré Coeur can be busy with tourists, the side streets offer a picture perfect maze of café’s, boulangeries and craft shops to explore.

3) The Catacombes: see a very different (slightly creepy) side to Paris with a tour of the catacombs that house the bones of roughly 6 million people when they were moved from overflowing cemeteries in the 18th century.


Paris Image


If you are in need of some sun, Barcelona could be the place for you. This historic city is affordable, fun and close to the coast:

1) Sagrada Familia: the still unfinished Gaudi masterpiece is a must see on any visit to Barcelona. In construction since 1883, you will know why it isn’t finished when you see how ornate each element is. Top-tip: the climb to the top of the tower is not for the faint hearted!

2) Parque Guell: also designed by Gaudi the Parqu Guell is a stunning place to catch some rays. There are recommended routes to get the most from a visit or you can just find a shady spot to sit a read a book away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

3) La Boqueria Food Market: feeling peckish? This immense food market off las Ramblas is the place to go for fresh fruit and fantastic food from around the world. Try and get there before 2pm to experience the market at its best.



Belgium is becoming more popular as a destination from Ireland, its capital, Brussels, is a wonderful place for a city break in Europe. Famous as a centre for international politics, hosting a number of EU institutions and the headquarters of NATO, Brussels also boasts a wide range of historical and cultural activities to keep you entertained;

1) Le Grand Place: the UNSCO listed square is a must see on any visit Brussels. If you are lucky enough to visit in August than try and catch the flower carpet where 500,000 begonias cover the square.

2) Beer tasting: beer is big business in Brussels and Belgians take beer very seriously. One of the best ways to try a selection of beers is to go on a beer tasting tour.

3) The Atomium: Built for the World’s Fair in 1958, this giant atom has become a recognised landmark in the EU capital. Within the atom there are permanent and temporary science related exhibitions. The Atomium also offers wonderful views across the city. It really is a unique place to visit!



London is up there with New York as one of the world’s most varied and exciting cities to visit. Whether you are interested in its royal history, theatre, culture, shopping, food, sightseeing…the list is endless:

1) The London Eye: what could be more fun than a gigantic Ferris wheel on the bank of the Thames? See the city of London from 135 meters up – on a clear day you can see all the way to Windsor Castle!

2) The West End: London is one of the theatre capitals of the world and it is well worth catching a show in the West End, even if you only have a passing interest. Production values are so high here, you are almost guaranteed to be impressed by any show you go to see. Top tip: there’s a booth in Leicester square that sells discount tickets to some of the longest running shows.

3) Afternoon Tea: if you are going to have afternoon tea anywhere, it has to be in England. Book yourself into the Ritz or Claridges for a real treat or check out Groupon for something more affordable on your visit!


London Eye


The Italian capital of fashion has lots to offer a visitor on a city break in Europe. Everything and everyone here are beautiful, even the police uniforms were designed by a fashion designer:

1) Milan Cathedral: although the interior of this cathedral is suitably spectacular, it’s your ability to explore the roof from a variety of terraces that makes this cathedral really special.

2) Galleria Vittorio Emanuele: a visit to one of the world’s oldest shopping malls is a must on a trip to Milan. Filled with designer boutiques, it’s the perfect place if you are looking for something special to remember your trip.

3) ATMosfera: like all of Italy, food in Milan is wonderful, but this is something different; dinner served as you take a tram around the city.



It is easy to see how JK Rowling was inspired to write Harry Potter while living in this stunning city. The medieval old town with its cobbled streets and castle perched on a hilltop is deservedly a UNESCO World Heritage site and a wonderful place for a city break in Europe.

1) Real Mary Kings Close: a visit here is a must, a mix of history and theatre set in a warren of streets from 17th Century Edinburgh that have been perfectly preserved. Find out why, on this fascinating tour!

2) Ghost Tour: famous for its ghosts and ghouls, taking a ghost tour after dark is a fun and unusual way to start a night out in Edinburgh.

3) Harry Pottery Café: visit one of the café’s JK Rowling used to write in, the most famous is The Elephant House and see if you are equally inspired by its surrounds.

Edinburgh Castle and Close.


Known as a centre of industry in England, more recently Manchester has become a really popular place to visit on a city break in Europe. There’s plenty to see and do;

1) Old Trafford Tour: a visit to the theatre of dreams is a must for any sports fan. Find out about the 100 year history of the world famous football club.

2) Trafford Centre: if shopping is your thing, Manchester is home to The Trafford Centre one of the largest retail, dining and leisure malls in the UK. You can truly shop until you drop here.

3) Museum of Science and Industry: wonderful place for a family visit or if, like most of us, you are a big kid at heart!

You are sure to learn something at this hugely interactive museum. In even better news, entry is free!



This central German city is a major financial hub and home to the EU central bank, but there’s much more to see and do on a holiday here:

1) Goethe-Museum and Goethe-House: the family home of one of Germany’s most famous authors Johann Wolfgang von Goethe is also a museum of an 18th-century bourgeois style building. The lavish home is decorated with period furniture and paintings to provide visitors with an authentic view of Goethe’s life as a child there.

2) Senckenberg Natural History Museum: a fantastic natural history museum with a large dinosaur exhibition. A wonderful place to spend a few hours. 

3) The Palm Garden: Frankfurt is also home to the largest botanic gardens in Germany, an oasis of calm in a busy city!


There’s so much possibility…we think the hardest part will be deciding where to go!


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