Cheap City Break Destinations for Winter 2023/24

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At this time of year, we need a holiday more than at any other time of year and yet, our wallets also look their barest. This is where the cheap city break steps in to save the day. Lots of European destinations are at their cheapest over the chilliest months, so there are some serious steals to be found. Here are our five picks for winter 2023/24.

Prices are based on searches for January 2024, as done on the 5th December 2023.


Why Vilnius?

Lithuania’s capital city, Vilnius, is petite enough to explore entirely on foot but has enough on hand to keep you entertained for well over a weekend. Its the medieval old town that’ll capture your heart with its striking architecture, cosy cafes and boutique shops. For a slice of history, we recommend heading to the Museum of Occupations and Freedom Fights for an insightful look into the incredibly recent occupation of Lithuania by the Soviet union.

The city also has a surprisingly lively techno scene, making it great for those who want to dance until dawn with their friends.

dealchecker Tip: The nightlife starts late here, so be prepared for a 1am start or later.

Average cost of a pint: £3.40

Flight prices: From £59 return

Where to stay: Novotel Vilnius Centre – this city centre hotel is modern and comfortable, but with prices that are kind to your wallet.

Accommodation price: From £147 for a three-night stay


Why Timisoara?

With its pastel-coloured buildings, intriguing orthodox cathedral and sprawling green squares, the Romanian city of Timisoara is a particularly picturesque one. It’s the sort of destination that can be enjoyed by simply strolling around or gazing out at from a coffee shop: there’s no need for frantic jam-packed itineraries here. For a taste of culture, head to the opera house here or to the Timisoara Art Museum which is housed in a former baroque palace.

dealchecker Tip: The city is a small one and you’ll need no longer than two days to explore it.

Average cost of a pint: £1.73

Flight prices: From £52 return

Where to stay: Hotel Continental – this hotel is housed in one of Timisoara’s tallest buildings, and boasts both an indoor and outdoor pool, and its own spa.

Accommodation price: From £138 for a two-night four-star stay


Why Palma?

While it is positively miserable here weather-wise, skies are a whole lot sunnier over in Majorca’s capital city, Palma. In January, you’ll find average highs of 15°C, so you’ll be able to leave those heavy winter layers behind. Perched on the seafront, you’ll be able to marry beach walks with attraction-hopping on a stay here. The gothic Santa Maria Cathedral is a must-visit, as is the circular Bellver Castle.

Average cost of a pint: £4.13

Flight prices: From £43 return

Where to stay: Meliá Palma Marina – this sprawling, four-star hotel has a prime position beside the famous Bellver Castle, but it’ll be hard to drag yourself away from the hotel itself thanks to the large outdoor pool, dreamy sea views and extensive spa facilities.

Accommodation price: From £254 for a three-night four-star stay


Why Gdansk?

The city of Gdansk is as rich in history as it is beautiful; it has both in abundance. Perched beside the sea, in summer months, you can tie your city break in with a spot of sunbathing but we recommend that you save this for a second viewing of the city. There is so much culture and history to be taken in here: there’s a museum dedicated to the Second World War, while another (the European Solidarity Centre) tells the story of the shipping industry and the importance of its role in the city, while reconstructed 17th- and 18th-century merchants’ houses will make you feel as though you’re walking the streets of Amsterdam. It’s not all about history either, the city has a burgeoning foodie scene and you’ll find exciting tasting menus at prices that we could only dream of in London.

Average cost of a pint: £2.58

Flight prices: From £28 return

Where to stay: PURO Gdańsk Stare Miasto – this cool four-star hotel has a prime location right smack bang in the centre of the action in Gdansk.

Accommodation price: From £175 for a three-night four-star stay


Why Tirana?

Albania’s capital city has a somewhat haphazard feel to it: multi-coloured buildings sit beside a chaotic but well-loved Skanderbeg Square, and a huge concrete pyramid sits in its midst. However, this all adds to the city’s charm, there’s something unexpected to see on every corner and a coffee/bar scene has begun to bloom here giving this metropolis a distinctly hip feel. It’s a city that feels like it’s on the cusp of something new, and we recommend getting in before everything changes.

Average cost of a pint: £2.87

Flight prices: From £26 return

Where to stay: Arka Art Hotel – this plush hotel boasts a rooftop pool that wraps around the building, decadent interiors and a well-equipped gym.

Accommodation price: From £203 for a three-night five-star stay