Forget the flowers, chuck the chocolates and invest in something that you and your loved one probably don't get enough of this Valentines Day: quality time together. And what's better than time spent exploring a new destination together, or revisiting a much-loved place from your past...
Famous for it's Christmas markets, Bruges is also the perfect Valentines destination this year. Jump on the Eurostar at St Pancras station to set off on a journey that takes less time than travelling from London to Newcastle. With the beautiful cobbled streets and breath-taking medieval structure, Bruges is one of the most romantic cities in the world. We recommend booking a chocolate tasting event, as well as visiting the Bonifacious Bridge and dining out at the Crowne Plaza.
If you don't fancy the swanky Relais Bourgondisch Cruyce hotel, renowned for its Gothic Dolls House appearance in the most photographed Canal of the city, then why not look into AirBnB's top locations around the city. Staying off the beaten track amongst the locals only adds to a truly romantic and authentic Belgian experience.
Waltz off to Vienna for a valentine's break of music and art. With Opera to die for, as well as the most exquisite fine art museums in the world, Vienna boasts to be a city break set alight with culture and romance.
Featuring Europe's most glamorous and top socialite balls throughout February, from the Vienna Opera Ball to the Rudolfina Redoute masquerade ball at the Imperial Palace, it will be one of the most opulent and elegant evenings of your life.
And what's better than waking up to a day at the Kunsthistorische Museum, admiring masterpieces by Rubens. Titian, Caravaggio and, most fittingly, works by Gustav Klimt. (Klimt's 'The Kiss', one of the most romantic paintings of all time, can be seen at the Österreichische Galerie Belvedere.)
Nothing beats romance like crystal blue skies and mountain air. So if you are feeling a little indulgent, head to St Moritz for the ultimate Valentine's day break.
Famous for its healing waters, spectacular views and 322 days of sunshine a year, St Moritz earned its reputation by hosting the likes of Charlie Chaplain, the Clooneys and Grace Kelly.
St Moritz is abundant with five-star hotels, including legendary establishments such as the Kulm, Carlton and Suvretta, but if you’re serious in your pursuit of love then there is only one place to stay: Badrutt’s Palace Hotel.
Almost intimidatingly extravagant, Badrutt’s Palace Hotel is placed picturesquely across the road from Lake St. Moritz. With nearly every room displaying lake/mountain-view balconies, six amazing restaurants, a nightclub and an extremely luxurious spa, plus tennis courts and a seasonal ice rink, you will find it hard to take time out for skiing.
Plus, every guest is treated like a VIP, which is especially important on Valentine’s Day...
Visit York for the traditional food, river paths and open fires. Unlike most cities, York really comes to life in winter. It’s cold but magical, lamp-lit and atmospheric, perfect for
We recommend exploring this small city on foot, strolling through the cobbled streets and taking in the rich variety of ancient buildings, embattled walls and faced paced, modern city centre. Take the route to the medieval, cobbled Shambles along the Low Petergate - the Roman legionaries disappeared down to fight the marauding British - to find the treasures of the Minster and its surrounding streets.
Drifting east of the city leads to the middle of York's food scene, along Fossgate and Walmgate. We suggest The Hairy Fig for a British lunch. This tiny delicatessen is crammed from floor to ceiling with artisan produce, and their 'Yorkshire Platter' of York ham, pork pies, chutneys and local cheeses is every bit as delicious as it sounds.
Another City close to home, yet often overlooked, Edinburgh offers amazing views, hidden courtyards, secret gardens and breath-taking architecture.
Think of Edinburgh and the words ‘International Festival’ and ‘Fringe’ come to mind, but it has much more to offer than just history, architecture and the arts. It is an increasingly cosmopolitan city too, with five Michelin-starred restaurants, a rapidly growing bar/cafe culture, vibrant nightlife and a varied and accessible arts scene. You will also find plenty of the independent shops, boutiques and small galleries that make browsing an addictive pleasure.
For a slightly more eccentric Valentine's day, book yourself into the Witchery by the Castle. The fantasy suites near Edinburgh Castle is a treasured romantic getaway, labelled by The Telegraph as 'sumptuous, indulgent, and slightly (delightfully) mad'. With four poster beds and beautiful breakfast hampers, the Witchery is located in the heart of the city.
These are the most beautiful small islands on Earth. They are exclusive, intimate and idyllic. There is no agriculture and no industry and the turquoise lagoons are crystal clear. This ethereal haven offers complete escape from everyday life, making it the perfect destination for Valentine's Day. Loose yourself in your surroundings, sign up to a yoga class, swim with the parrot fish and stingrays. There's even the world's first underwater restaurant, underwater nightclub and underwater spa here!
These collection of islands is the perfect destination to fuel the romance, relax with your loved one and enjoy glorious sunsets, beautiful seafood, stunning beaches and some mid-winter sun. Just don't come back gloriously tanned, wishing that island life was a reality rather than a distant dream away...
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