Whilst the dream might be to spend months exploring new destinations, in reality a last-minute weekend trip to a city we have dreamed of is the most we can do. Read on for how to make the most of your short time away and come back with a camera full of memories rather than a heap full of ‘what if’s’.
Plan Like Mad
You only have a short amount of time to explore this amazing place so you want to make the most of it and not spend that precious time working out how to get from the airport to your hotel or from your hotel to the centre if you are staying outside of it. Make sure you know how you are going to get around whilst you are there and roughly what you want to see. Most airports or large transport depots have maps there so pick one up on your arrival if it is more an on-the-spur trip and get circling things as you make your journey to drop off your baggage.
Preferably with just a backpack if you can, this makes it so much easier when you land or make your coach transfer and if you are packed light enough it also means you don’t have to spend precious time on your first day travelling to your hotel to store your luggage. On that note, try to organise your bag in order of what you will use, with outfits pre-planned. This will save a ton of time unpacking and packing your bag leaving you more time to have fun.
Stay Close to the Things you Want to See
Whilst hotels closer to tourist sights might cost a lot more, there are some hidden gems. When we visited Rome we found a bargain room only hotel in the centre where we just had to lean out of the window to see the Colosseum, amazing! That said, some cities have brilliant public transport links taking you just a few minutes to tram/train it in. When visiting Dublin for instance, unluckily on a weekend when an event was taking place, we stayed just outside of the action in Tallaght, just a short tram ride from what we wanted to see (just be wary of added taxi costs if you arrive at night).
Weekender trips are the perfect way to see a new city (read more about my favourites here) and are my favourite way to explore. With many events taking place on the weekend you should be in the thick of things right away. Just be wary that some countries shut down on a Sunday so plan your Saturday around that leaving sights such as famous parks or cafe treats for the Sunday.
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