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Romantic city breaks for Christmas

Christmas is the season for getting together with friends and family. However, for couples it’s also important to make time for each other. So, why not treat your loved one to a romantic Christmas city break?

Maybe you’ve got some annual leave entitlement to use up or you’re retired and at a bit of a loose end util the family arrives for the festivities? Maybe you fancy a change of scene for the big day itself? As well as classic Christmas destinations such as the Alps or Lapland, there are some other places closer to home that are just perfect for romantic city breaks for Christmas. Here are a few ideas…


If you want to feel really Christmassy in one of the world’s most romantic cities, Amsterdam is a good choice. During the festive season, the city comes alive with seasonal cheer. However, it’s also less busy than other European capitals, so it’s easy to escape from the hustle and bustle, relax and focus on enjoying each other’s company.

One of the most romantic things to do in Amsterdam at Christmas is simply to stroll around and soak up the atmosphere. Bedecked with lights, decorations and the illuminated artworks of the Amsterdam Light Festival, the city’s signature canals and townhouses create a romantic setting that’s full of festive magic. Why not take a cruise on a cozy canal boat and see the lights from the water?

There are lots of other romantic things to do in Amsterdam at Christmas, from ice skating and candlelight concerts to dinner for two in a destination eatery. And of course, there are the Christmas markets, where you can share some festive food and drink, as well as buying each other a special Christmas gift.


When it comes to romantic city breaks for Christmas, Berlin is another attractive option. The city is known for its lively atmosphere and its many Christmas markets offer all kinds of festive experiences, from traditional attractions to engaging counter-culture. However, there are also plenty of secret spots and romantic places to escape to as a couple.

At this time of year, the Spandau district of the city combines romance with festive spirit. Its old town area transforms into a winter wonderland, complete with a Christmas market and a huge Christmas tree. Just down the road, towards the city center, is the Tiefwerder Wiesen, one of the most romantic locations in Berlin. It’s a protected wetland wildlife area that’s a great place for a winter walk.

The Charlottenburg Palace is another of Berlin’s attractions that’s a must-see on the itinerary for romantic city breaks for Christmas. You can spend some time browsing around the Christmas market, then follow in the footsteps of royalty as you stroll arm-in-arm around the beautiful baroque gardens, designed by French landscape architect Siméon Godeau.


Trier is not a place that instantly springs to mind when you’re thinking of a romantic city break in Europe. What you probably didn’t know is that it’s Germany’s oldest city, founded by the Romans in 16BC. Therefore, it’s full of history and romance, not to mention being a vibrant modern metropolis with great shopping, dining and entertainment. It’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Trier Christmas Market is set in the medieval marketplace against the romantic backdrop of the Cathedral of St Peter. Open from 18 November to 22 December, the market was voted in the top 10 Christmas markets to visit in 2022 by the online tourism platform European Best Destinations. It’s an enchanting place to enjoy a mulled wine from the Moselle or a hot punch made from apples grown in the Eifel Hills.


A beautiful city with an arty vibe, Utrecht is a great destination for a romantic city break during the festive season. It has the canals and culture of Amsterdam without the crowds, so even at Christmas time it has a laid-back feel, while still being infused with seasonal cheer.

There’s nowhere more romantic than Utrecht after dark. As well as the Christmas lights, the Utrecht Lumen trail takes you on an illuminated journey through the city’s history, with light-based artworks specially created to highlight important locations and architecture.

Enjoying a romantic meal out is another essential experience for couples visiting Utrecht at Christmas. The city has a wealth of places to eat, from fine dining establishments to cosy bistros and friendly cafés. However, for the most romantic experience it has to be one of the atmospheric restaurants housed in medieval canalside cellars.

There are many places across Europe to enjoy romantic city breaks for Christmas. Wherever you choose, you’ll be able to share wonderful experiences to live in the memory forever.

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