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10 European Cities You Just Have To Visit

10 European Cities You Just Have To Visit

As a keen traveller who’s always planning her next adventure, I do a heck of a lot of research on cities I need to visit and destinations that will suit not only my taste for travel but my budget too! As a UK citizen, travelling around Europe is ideal as nowhere is too far, flights are cheap and also relatively inexpensive. So today I’m sharing with you my top 10 European Cities that you should definitely be adding to your travel bucket list!

1. London

I suppose I should begin with my own capital city! I’ve always loved London since a young age, the buzz just draws you in. You will never run out of sights to see, restaurants to try and pop-up events to head to. The city is just bursting with culture, don’t just stick to central London either, there are plenty of things to do in East London as well.

Make sure you stop by Sketch for afternoon tea, stay at the Hoxton and dine at Dishoom.

2. Rome

The perfect destination to head to with your partner. There’s no denying Rome is a romantic city, although that being said, I am yet to visit Venice! There are obvious sights such as the Coliseum, Pantheon, Spanish Steps and Trevi foundation to visit, all of which do not disappoint! I would advise to try and book a tour before you head off to Rome as it saves lots of time and queuing. Take a leisurely stroll around the cobbled streets with a gelato in hand. Try some of the back streets for true Italian food rather than some of the restaurants that are slap bang in the centre and offer a more tourist centred menu.

Stay at the Regina Hotel Baglioni, take a Segway tour and eat plenty of gelato.

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3. Berlin

A stark contrast to Rome are the graffiti’d walls of Berlin. An exciting city, this has to be one of my favourite destinations for a long weekend. Bursting with restaurants, bars, boutiques and rich history. Berlin is not be missed off your travel list. Make sure you visit the Brandenburg gate, the Reichstag and the Berlin wall to take in the history of the city. After you’ve visited the city’s main spots, enjoy the many bars and stunning city art and architecture. Berlin is also home to many parks and gardens too, so if you’re visiting in the summer time try and plan a picnic too.

Stay at the Titanic Gendarmenmarkt, visit Voo store for the best threads and eat at Cookies Cream for great vegetarian food.

4. Dublin

If you’re based in the UK, Dublin is under an hour away by airplane but even if you’re further away it’s still well worth a visit! Enjoy a pint of Guinness as you overlook the city from the Guinness Storehouse panoramic bar. The Temple Bar area of the city is a must-visit with tonnes of pubs and bars to enjoy whilst watching the world go by. The temple bar region is great for a younger audience with lots of different eateries, vintage shops and other little gems.

Stay at The Westbury for a touch of luxury or The Temple Inn for a more affordable stay.

5. Stockholm

Slick and stylish, Stockholm is the the ultimate destination for fans of Scandinavian design and minimalism. Bursting with inspiring street style, picturesque cobbled pathways and endless cafés, there are so many aspects to this city to enjoy. Be sure to enjoy a boat trip of the islands whilst viewing the stunning architecture the city has to offer.

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Stay at Hotel J, eat at Lilla Ego and make sure you visit Acne Studios for high end designer fashion.

6. Paris

The city of love! Paris is definitely one of those places you just have to visit at some point in your life. The city is truly stunning and of course the Eiffel Tower is an absolute must see. Wander down the gorgeous streets and be sure to stop for a macaroon and café latte! This is a seriously stylish city, oozing elegance and class. You have to experience some Parisian shopping, it’s not all about Chanel and design fashion though, there are some great vintage stores with many hidden gems.

Stay at the stylish Hotel Recamier, stop for a hot chocolate at Angelina and enjoy an éclair from l’éclair de genie.

7. Cambridge  

The historic university of Cambridge has so much to offer. Walk around the stunning university grounds and be sure to take a punt down on the river! There are plenty of boutiques, cafés and restaurants to visit, and make sure you head to the University Botanic Gardens and Fitzwilliam Museum for a fun, affordable day out. There’s always something to see at one of the city’s theatres, and there are lots of bars to keep you entertained in the evening also. There’s also the nearby Newmarket Races which are well worth a visit!

Stay at the Bedford Lodge Hotel, eat pizza at La Margherita and stop for a drink at student favourite, The Snug.

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8. Barcelona

Flights to Barcelona can be very cheap from the UK so it’s no wonder it’s such a popular holiday destination. You can enjoy the best of both worlds with a city vibe as well as a beach. Make sure you see some of Gaudi’s work whist you’re there, the Casa Batllo is a must see for all Gaudi lovers. To ensure you see as much of the city as you can then I would recommend a cycle tour. There’s no better way to see the sights and learn all about Barcelona’s history.

Stay at the H10 Catalunya Palace and be sure to book your cycle tour before you go!

9. Prague

Take in the sights of this medieval city and its stunning gothic architecture. It’s the perfect Christmas break destination but can be enjoyed year-round! Highlights of the city include the Prague Castle, the Charles Bridge and the infamous John Lennon Wall. There are also other fun activities you can try including a cycle trip from Prague to Vienna. The beer museum is also a popular tourist attract, offering a lively atmosphere and plenty of different beers to ‘test’.

Stay at the Boho Prague Hotel and eat a Kolkovna restaurant.

10. Budapest

Often described as a ‘fairytale city’ it’s not hard to see why, the city castles look like they’ve come straight out of a Disney movie. The city itself is breath-taking, full of charm and incredible architecture everywhere you turn. You must be sure to visit the Budapest Parliament, the building is quite simply beautiful. Find the best view of the city at the Fisherman’s Bastion, a tip though, be sure to get there early to take in the best view without swarms of other people.

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Stay at the Corinthia hotel and spa for a touch of luxury and be sure to stop by the Ruin Pubs too.

Where is next on your travel list?

Featured photo credit: inyourpocket.com via inyourpocket.com

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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