Top 5 Winter Breaks From London

It can be tempting to think of travel as a purely summery pursuit. Beaches, sand, sun and outdoor activities await those who patiently count down the months till June, but have you considered a winter weekend break? There are so many cities within just a few hours of London, many of them perfect for exploring during the cooler months. Aside from the fact that you won’t end up boiling hot or sunburned, you’ll also benefit from fewer crowds and cheaper prices in the winter season. To help inspire you, I’ve picked the top 5 winter breaks from London to keep your wanderlust sated until summer.

Winter Breaks From London

Paris, France

Winter Breaks From London - Paris

“Paris is always a good idea”

It’s impossible to disagree with this famous Audrey Hepburn quote because it’s absolutely true. Whether you visit the City of Lights on the sunniest of summer days or in the dead of winter, Paris is always enchanting. There’s nothing like huddling in a piano bar with a glass of vin rouge or spending hours exploring every corner of the Louvre to make you love a Parisian winter.

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Tallinn, Estonia

Winter Breaks From London - Tallinn

Almost every time someone asks for a weekend break recommendation, Tallinn is my number one choice. I visited this Estonian destination a couple of years ago and loved every second of my time there. The medieval walled city is like a fairytale, complete with narrow, cobblestone streets, church spires and a quaint town square that’s filled with Christmas markets in December. It’s cheap, it’s spectacularly beautiful and the food is divine. What are you waiting for?

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Budapest, Hungary

Winter Breaks From London - Budapest

Hearty meals of smoked meat, hot outdoor pools, ice skating on rivers, indulging in cake in cosy cafes…if all of these things sound good, then Budapest is the winter destination for you. There are so many things to keep you busy (and warm) in the winter months that it would be a shame to only see this Hungarian city in summer. Like Tallinn, Budapest is a great choice if you’re on a tighter budget, although if you want to splurge there are plenty of ways to do that too.

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Edinburgh, Scotland

Winter Breaks From London - Edinburgh

Flights to Edinburgh from London take just over an hour, and if you book in advance you can usually get a pretty good deal. Alternatively, the train from King’s Cross is a scenic and comfortable way to hop up to Scotland for a weekend. Spend time walking the Royal Mile with its Diagon Alley charm (and while you’re there, pop in for a coffee in the cafe where J.K. Rowling allegedly wrote the Harry Potter series), feel like a king at Edinburgh Castle and if you’re willing to brave the cold, take a hike up to Arthur’s Seat for panoramic views.

Reykjavik, Iceland

Winter Breaks From London - Reykjavik

Iceland is a destination that’s sprung up on the tourist map in recent years, and for very good reason. The beauty of visiting in winter is that you may have a chance to spot the Northern Lights, but that’s not all. Spend a day soaking in the thermal waters of the Blue Lagoon, check out Gulfoss, a huge waterfall that freezes in the winter, and stroll around the quaint and colourful city of Reykjavik in search of lambswool clothing to stave off the Icelandic cold.

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What’s your favourite winter break from London?

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  • Really good recommendations! I always suggest Budapest for a cheap, winter city break. It’s such a lovely city. People are always surprised at how affordable Reykjavik is too. I spent a week there and did loads of tours without breaking the bank. To be honest though, the Northern Lights are so special that it’d be worth it even if it was megabucks! I’m adding to Tallinn to the list now. :) x

    • Elle Croft says:

      Thanks Taylor! I have to say, I found Reykjavik quite expensive once I was there (although the flight was cheap), but that was years ago and I was on a spectacularly tight budget so I’d probably feel differently now. Still, it is an amazing winter break destination! x

  • Kasha says:

    Love this list, Elle! We’re heading to Tallinn at the end of January, and I’ve just printed off your blogposts about the city :)

    I think Budapest will be our target for next winter!

  • All great destinations!! I had never considered Tallinn before though. It’s on the list now, thanks!

  • Ragan Wesson says:

    I have never been to Estonia but your posts make me want to go! Edinburgh is truly one of my favorite cities in the world…I would love to experience it during the winter months. Adding that to my bucketlist! love your blog :)

    • Elle Croft says:

      Thanks so much Ragan! Edinburgh is a fab city – although I’m yet to experience it in the summer, so I’ll have to try that one day too. Estonia should definitely be on your list…I am a huge fan, in case that wasn’t already obvious! Haha

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