Making the most of your short city break

November 21, 2011 § 1 Comment


City breaks

When we visit a city for the first time, on a short city break, it can be over-whelming trying to see and do as much as possible, before we have to head back to our day jobs again. With a little pre-break preparation, we can reduce the stress and hopefully, maximise our time a little better.

There is no excuse these days, for not planning what you can do during your short break, when we have access to the all-seeing, all-knowing internet. Whether it’s one of the many review sites such as Trip Advisor or the hundreds, if not thousands, of reviews to be found on blogs, forums and specialist traveling sites. We all like to think we can be spontaneous, don’t we? But not so much that it might jeopardise the break we have been waiting months to enjoy.

So, you have your destination and the dates you are going – what next?

I still don’t think you can beat a trip to WHSmiths on the high street and picking up a great travel guide, they are so much better than they used to be. Pull out maps of the city you plan to visit, key attractions guides, vouchers for discounts, restaurant reviews and even advice on how not to get caught out by the normal tourist traps. Don’t just rely on the internet.

Now you have the guide that you will be reading during your journey, you might want to converse with the “all knowing oracle” that is the internet. What I really love is that you can do video tours of places, to quickly assess what must be on your city trip “hit list”. Many cities are now covered by Google Street View allowing you to take a virtual walk past your hotel and check out the local eateries from your computer.

Without a doubt, you can’t beat a good face to face review from a friend or colleague. I like to think we are more likely to believe a friend’s review rather than something we read in a guide or on the internet. They are more likely to be honest and are very unlikely to have anything to gain from their review.

Are you a veteran city break traveller? What advice would you give to someone planning their first city break?

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