Above: Copenhagen, Denmark
Student life is hard enough as it is, but travelling on a tight budget is a whole other struggle. Finding the perfect getaway only for your bank balance to shatter all your dreams is top two most heart-breaking feelings, and hint – it’s not number two. That’s why for our 70th anniversary (OMG, RIGHT), we’ve decided to round up our favourite places to go for under £70, so prep yourself and start booking your next fun (and affordable!) adventure!
Above: Veliko Turnovo, Bulgaria
Return flights to Bulgaria’s capital Sofia are currently about £30 in January (£25 in February and March!) and we couldn’t possibly be more excited about this! Considered one of Eastern Europe’s main hubs for both art and history, Bulgaria has so much to offer and if you choose to stay in Sofia, or what is called the city that “grows but doesn’t age”, get ready for some vibrant nightlife, and endless entertainment.
Food is relatively cheap in Bulgaria, with street vendors selling pizza, Mekitsas (deep fried kneaded dough, usually stuffed with feta cheese) and local banitchka (pastry). Accommodation can be a little expensive if staying in central Sofia, but moving a little further out will save you loads, with decent Airbnb’s starting at about £15/night. Anything stopping you from going right now?
Fly to some of Italy’s most famous cities and towns for less than £20 return! If you fancy a slice of history, then Pisa is the place for you. Located in Southern Tuscany, this beautiful city is not only home to one of the world’s most famous buildings, the Leaning Tower, but also holds some of the most breath-taking churches and palaces in Europe.
If you want a holiday with some hustle-and-bustle and days full of exploration, then Milan is the place to go. With many fashion designers basing their brands in Italy’s fashion capital, it’s no secret that the streets are full of fashionistas window-shopping, so get ready to step into a real-life magazine as you take the streets of Milan.
Accommodation in both Pisa and Milan can be quite expensive, but when booked in advance, Airbnb’s and hostels tend to offer competitive prices, with a two-night stay costing about £45 on average, meaning you can easily book a trip to one of these cities for under £70.
Now we’re sure you’ve come across the famous sights of Copenhagen, especially the canals and views along the waterways of Nyhavn, so what’s stopping you from booking your next holiday to Denmark? Flights in January are about £28 return, and you’ve guessed it – booking accommodation in advance will save you about £35, making your stay there cost about £20 per night, even if you end up going for a nice hotel. Copenhagen is also famous for its Little Mermaid statue, which attracts thousands of tourists every year.
Make sure you pack your stretchy pants if you decide to visit Denmark because the food there is to-die-for. If you like Danish pastries here, wait till you try the authentic ones in their local bakeries – never ever has a combination of butter and flour tasted so good. Nordic countries like Denmark are also famous for their rye bread, and whether you try it as a loaf or in a Danish open-face sandwich, you’re bound to love this popular food. So, get ready for one of the most relaxing vacations of your life, and book that flight to Copenhagen…
Don’t be fooled by Luxembourg’s microstate status – this beautiful country has so much on offer, and you don’t want to miss out on this one. As one of the European Union’s capitals, Luxembourg’s capital Luxembourg City is one of the most beautifully multicultural cities in Europe. With return flights about £35 between January and March, experiencing this charming part of Northern Europe doesn’t have to break the bank. While there, you might want to pay Château de Clervaux a visit. This castle in the north of Luxembourg is home to “The Family of Man” exhibition, curated by Edward Steichen, which toured the world for 8 years and attracted over 9 million visitors before being archived in Luxembourg. If you’re looking to save some money, go for a weekend escape here in the summer, as that’s when the accommodation rates in the city are lowest, and then you can splash out a bit more on food and pay a visit to one of the city’s remarkable Michelin-starred restaurants.
Visiting Germany doesn’t just mean paying a visit to Berlin. We’ve decided to explore our options a little more and Hamburg, Germany’s second-largest city, has certainly caught our eye. The red light district, Reeperbahn, is one of the most famous in the world, and is full of bars and shops that are bound to set your spirits alive. As a maritime city, the waterfront has so much to offer – from parks and seaside restaurants, to boat tours and shopping, Hamburg is a world of its own. Looking for hearty German food and beer? Try Cologne. This city, which sits by the Rhine river, is one of Germany’s culture gems with over thirty museums and some of the most authentic German restaurants. Want to experience something a little different? Try their famous Dunkelrestaurant, where you can dine in pitch black, which is meant to simulate blindness, and is the experience of a lifetime.
If all of this sounds tempting but you’re worried about finances, fear not – flights to both Hamburg and Cologne are about £30 return, and hostels are abundant and quite cheap all over both cities, so get your bags and let’s go!
Want a picturesque destination that is bound to spice up your Instagram? Look no further. Book that £24 return flight and pay a visit to Europe’s largest medieval marketplace, located in Kraków, Poland. As one of the cities that escaped the worst of the WWII bombings, Kraków has a certain old-world character to it, and its Jewish district is packed with lively art galleries, buoyant restaurants and cute little cafes. Whilst there, you’ll have to pay a visit to the Wawel Royal Castle, which is a symbol of the independent Polish state, with gothic-style architecture that is absolutely jaw-dropping. Fancy staying in the capital and exploring more of Warsaw? Also a fantastic decision! The Polish capital has a dynamic nightlife, but even more impressive is the decades of wartime history that is evident everywhere, from all the renowned museums and memorials to the striking cobbled streets. Hostels and budget hotels are dotted around the city, especially in the Old Town, and start from about £20 a night for a single. Time to get booking…
One thing – Belgian waffles. That’s it. That’s all we have to say. Okay, maybe we’ll try and persuade you a little more but honestly the waffles will make you never want to leave when you get there. Or maybe the fries will do that (did you know French fries originated in Belgium, not France?). Or maybe the Belgian chocolate will. Basically, any and all food you try in Belgium is guaranteed to be absolutely incredible, and yes you might gain a million pounds whilst you’re there, but it will be so worth it. Looking for something to help the food go down? Some fine Belgian beer is always just around the corner, and with over 1000 breweries, you’re bound to find the beer that sits just right with you. Walk it all off by exploring one of Belgium’s beautiful cities such as Brussels, or the dreamy town of Bruges, both of which have such rich history and are riddled with jaw-dropping art. Return flights to Brussels are about £29 each, and hostels tend to cost around £17 a night, meaning you could easily spend a weekend there on about £70, and it’s worth saving up and taking a bit more because you’re going to want to try everything in sight!