Top 100 City Break Destinations - an Online Study

Top 100 City Break Destinations - an Online Study

With over 2,000 city break destinations to choose from you might think, well, where do I even start? At GoEuro our goal is to make travel easy and we wanted to help undecided travellers find the best destinations. Based on the popularity of our Beer Price Index, Accommodation Index and Fun City Ranking, we know how much rankings can help when it comes to planning the perfect holiday. This time around, we teamed up with HomeToGo and combined all these factors to create the ultimate guide. Each city has been ranked on the following criteria: day activities, nightlife, accommodation, food and drink, and transport.

What are the results of the City Break Index?

By carefully examining and combining the various criteria, 100 top city breaks stood out ahead of all the others. We went further and identified the 10 best in five different categories as well as the most convenient city breaks for Brits looking to travel abroad. Finally, you can find a calendar of events for 2017 with the best suggestions of where to go in each month. Click the icons below and start planning.

But what do people look for during a city break? We believe that depends on the individual. This study ranked the top 100 city break destinations into five categories: day activities, nightlife, food and drink, accommodation and public transport. The best combination of these deciding factors resulted in the overall best city break destination of 2017 - Barcelona.

GoEuro City Break Infographic

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Top 100 City Breaks

Feel free to customise your ideal city break destination using the table below. You can click on each category and sort the ranking however you like to start planning your next city break.

The total score per city is based on a total of 100 points. Take a look at the sources below.

Top 3 City Breaks for Brits

What are our suggestions? Based on internal GoEuro data, we selected the top 3 city break destinations based on low prices and overall popularity. To no surprise, we discovered that Lisbon (chosen twice in 2016 as our destination of the month) topped the list.

Budapest has also becoming more popular with British tourists, receiving 5-star destination reviews, no wonder it’s one of the most popular city break choices for 2017. And finally, who doesn’t dream of a few days in the south of France? Marseille remains a popular destination with British tourists. Why? With frequent low cost airlines flying from the UK to Marseille, the UK public cannot help but take advantage of these low fares.


Top 10 City Breaks: Attractions and Activities

#1 Attractions and Activities: London

City breaks are the perfect time to get cultured. Are sightseeing and museum hopping at the top of your list? Then look no further. This study researched which city break destination offered the most activities from tours to attractions and shopping opportunities.

Scoring full points, London grabs the top spot as the best mini-break destination. Whether you want to indulge in cultural attractions or take part in some shopping, London is the mini-break for you. Paris comes in at a close second because the city has slightly fewer attractions. However, there is no lack of activities in the City of Light. Paris’ architecturally beautiful shopping galleries such as Galeries Lafayette, famous art galleries and world-famous landmarks ensure no tourist is ever bored when visiting the city.

Rank City Rating out of 5
1 London 5
2 Paris 4.9
3 Rome 4.8
4 Prague 4.7
5 Barcelona 4.6
6 Istanbul 4.3
7 Moscow 4.1
8 Madrid 3.9
9 Berlin 3.6
10 St. Petersburg 3.6

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Top 10 City Breaks: Nightlife

Rank City Rating out of 5
1 Berlin 5
2 Krakow 4.9
3 Barcelona 4.8
4 Kiev 4.7
5 Madrid 4.6
6 Sarajevo 4.5
7 Seville 4.5
8 Valencia 4.5
9 Wrocław 4.4
10 Coimbra 4.3
#1 Nightlife: Berlin

Night owls are spoilt for choice with Europe's array of city break destinations with an eccentric nightlife. But when push comes to shove, which cities top the list for nightlife? The results were built upon the number of bar/clubs in each city break destination, compared with the time of last orders and the average price of a beer.

Berlin offers over 500 nightlife venues for visitors to indulge in. With 24-hour bars/clubs and an average beer costing less than a fiver it’s no wonder Brits love taking a mini-break to the German capital. Although Krakow’s nightlife scene has a limited choice in venues, the bars never close if there are people inside. If you’re looking for a midnight snack while out on the town, head to ‘Kiełbaski z Nyski’ - a legendary old car which sells the best sausages in town!

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Top 10 City Breaks: Best Value Accommodation

#1 Best Value Accommodation: Kiev

Plenty of city break deals come as inclusive flight and hotel packages. But did you know that by booking your own transport and accommodation you'll find more flexibility with your trip and can save some extra cash?

Accommodation prices and availability are often deciding factors for choosing a city break destination. Even for a short city break, most travellers don’t want to fork out a fortune on a place to stay.

Prices for accommodation depend on the destination’s popularity, price and the amount of accommodation available. This is why you don't see big capitals such as London on the list.

Rank City Rating out of 5
1 Kiev 5
2 Zagreb 5
3 Budapest 5
4 Siena 5
5 Sarajevo 4.9
6 Coimbra 4.9
7 Pilsen 4.6
8 Riga 4.5
9 Sofia 4.5
10 Bucharest 4.3

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Top 10 City Breaks: Food and Drinks

Rank City Rating out of 5
1 Barcelona 5
2 Madrid 5
3 Paris 4.9
4 Rome 4.9
5 London 4.8
6 Istanbul 4.6
7 Berlin 4.6
8 Milan 4.1
9 Prague 4
10 Lisbon 3
#1 Food and Drinks: Barcelona

The majority of us like to spoil ourselves with glorious dishes when we’re on holiday. With so many cuisines across Europe to choose from, picking the best short city break destination for food and drink can be tough.

We calculated the average cost and quality of a meal in each city break destination. Barcelona and Madrid, Spain's two largest cities, top our list as the best city break destination for food and drinks. What does that tell us about city breakers? That fresh tapas and sweet sangria are favoured among tourists.

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Top 10 City Breaks: Public Transportation

#1 Public Transportation: Bucharest

Transport often comes as an unexpected cost when planning a city break. If you want to minimise spending costs, avoid popular short city break destinations such as Venice and Zurich. If you’re after a cheap city break, why not consider exploring Europe’s Eastern capitals?

Topping our list for cheap city breaks for public transport is Bucharest where the average taxi rate is 55p per kilometre. A one way ticket on Kiev’s public transport costs just 0.14p per journey. Not only is the Ukraine capital hosting EuroVision 2017, but it’s home to wondrous structures and an incredible history.

Rank City Rating out of 5
1 Bucharest 5
2 Sofia 5
3 Kiev 4.9
4 Sarajevo 4.9
5 Gdansk 4.2
6 Wrocław 4
7 Krakow 3.9
8 Istanbul 3.8
9 Pilsen 3.7
10 Antalya 3.6

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Plan Your City Break for Big Events in 2017

Location Special event Date
Aarhus, Denmark European Capital of Culture Entire year
Kiev, Ukraine Eurovision Song Festival 13 May
Cardiff, United Kingdom UEFA Champions League Final 3 June
Wrocław, Poland World Games 20-30 July
Combine a city break with an event

With 2017 on the horizon, there is no time like the present to start planning your next city break. Love Eurovision? Head to host city Kiev, Ukraine, ranked 13th in our City Break Index. The city is known for its cheap transport and accommodation which you can check out above.

Are you more of a sports fan? Wrocław, one of the best city break destinations for accommodation and nightlife, will be hosting this year’s World Games from the 20th - 30th of July. If you’re more into football, British tourists won’t have to travel too far as Cardiff is gearing up to host the UEFA Champions League Final on June 3rd.

Top Monthly Events in Popular City Break Destinations 2017


City Break Destinations in Europe

City break in Barcelona
Travel to Barcelona
Travel to Prague
Travel to Berlin
Travel to Madrid
Travel to London
Travel to Paris
Travel to Lisbon
Travel to Krakow
Travel to Budapest
Travel to Sevilla
City break in Istanbul
Travel to Istanbul
Travel to Rome
Travel to Kiev
Travel to Valencia
Travel to Vienna
Travel to Sarajevo
Travel to Zagreb
Travel to Hamburg
Travel to Munich
Travel to Amsterdam
City break in Milan
Travel to Milan
Travel to Cologne
Travel to Coimbra
Travel to Wroclaw
Travel to Bratislava
Travel to Porto
Travel to Athens
Travel to Granada
Travel to Brno
Travel to Frankfurt


The criteria used to weigh and classify cities in each country are as follows in order of importance:

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