There’s no doubt that we’re all taking shorter and more frequent holidays than we used to, especially the younger generations. And when it comes to bite-sized holidays, city breaks tend to come to mind first. And why not? A small break in a cultural capital or historic hub is a great way to enjoy some time away without using too much annual leave and leaving plenty of money in the bank for future trips.
But there’s no reason why you have to stay in Europe to enjoy this kind of holiday. If you have a bit more time on your hands and a slightly bigger budget, there are plenty of other places that are perfect city break destinations. You may have to fly for longer to reach them, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be enjoyed in the same way. Here are some great examples.
New York will always be a popular destination for UK travellers and its accessibility makes it one of the best options for a US city break. In around seven hours, you will land in the City That Never Sleeps and, from there, the world is your oyster. Do you tick all the tourist spots off your list? Do you explore the arty attractions? Do you go in search of the ‘real’ New York away from the hustle and bustle of Manhattan? Do you focus on the fantastic shopping opportunities? Do you fill your time with Broadway shows and sporting events? Whatever you decide, the chances are you’ll be back for another visit before too long.
Toronto is Canada’s largest city and a diverse melting pot of cultures. Because of this, there is much to see and do on your city break and hundreds of ways to create a jam-packed itinerary. The main sights include the CN Tower, Casa Loma and Ripley's Aquarium of Canada but this is just the start. Foodies should head to the St. Lawrence market to try some of the local peameal bacon, amongst other delights, whilst sports fans may want to catch a Blue Jays game at the Rodgers Centre. However, one of the best things to do in Toronto is hit the streets and see what you can find. There’s always something happening around Yonge-Dundas Square and if city life ever gets too much, you can head out to the Toronto Islands for the day.
Africa may seem quite far away but the flight time to the Moroccan city of Marrakech is only around three and a half hours. It’s amazing how travelling a relatively short distance across the world can land you in a totally alien environment and a culture that is completely different to that in the UK. A city break here is all about letting your senses guide you through the historic souks and discovering the near thousand-year history that lies around every corner of the Red City. The UNESCO World Heritage-listed Medina is where the heart of the action takes place. You will be charmed by intricate mosques, entertained by street performers and be able to satisfy your stomach with flavourful local dishes.
A trip to the west coast of America may not seem like the ideal journey for a short break, but the nature of Las Vegas and the kind of attractions it offers means that four or five days is the perfect amount of time to spend here. How you fill that time is up to you. Even if you’re not a gambler, it’s hard to resist the spin of the roulette wheel in some of the legendary casinos, even if it just to place a token chip on red or black for a brief adrenaline rush. There’s too much to see for gambling to dominate your trip, though, so explore the strip at every opportunity. Each of the amazing hotels transports you into another world, one where you constantly find yourself wondering how all this entertainment could fit under one roof. From theme park rides to aquariums, shopping centres and gourmet restaurants, it’s hard to take in just how much there is on offer. And when night falls, the bright lights beckon you to enjoy a host of out-of-this-world shows, featuring world-renowned music performers, jaw-dropping magic and everything in between.
If you looking to spend your city break in the lap of luxury and in 30-degree heat then Dubai is definitely your best bet. Reached within six and a half hours, you could be checking into your lavish hotel in no time at all. Aside from the weather and the chance to indulge, Dubai has many draws. It is one of the world’s best destinations for shopping and nothing is done by halves. It’s home to the world’s tallest building, largest shopping centre, biggest indoor theme park and is constantly striving to be bigger and better than anywhere else. If you’re not spending your time on the beach or in the hotel spa, you can take a 4x4 ride through the desert, enjoy a night at the opera, shop for gold in the souks or learn about the intriguing culture at the Sheikh Mohamed Centre for Cultural Understanding.
If you like the sound of any of these long-haul city breaks, we can help you plan your stay and offer some insightful advice. Call the TravelQuest team on 0800 021 3237 or submit your online enquiry here.