I like a good European weekend escape, and when there’s romance involved I love it. Whether I’m lying on a beach in the Mediterranean or standing in awe of a castle on the Rhine, a lot of places in Europe inspire that feeling. If you need some inspiration, read on for A Lady in London’s 7 picks for romantic weekend getaways in Europe.
Romantic Weekend Getaways in Europe
Whether you pack your bag and travel now or wait until another day, these places make great escapes. I’ve been to all of them—some on romantic breaks and some when I wished I were—so can speak from personal experience when I say they’re ideal for getting the sparks to fly.
Legend has it that Cyprus is the birthplace of Aphrodite. If the sandy coves of this Mediterranean island are good enough for the goddess of love, they’re certainly adequate for mere mortals. Right? Right. Plus, boulder-studded beaches and lush mountain vineyards make Cyprus the perfect spot for a romantic weekend away.
I studied abroad in Prague when I was in college and I still consider the city one of the most beautiful in Europe. Winding cobblestone streets and sweeping castle views tick all the boxes for classic romance, and subterranean bars and hideaways provide the perfect spots for secret rendez-vous. Add to that the stunning Art Nouveau buildings, and the Czech capital is a dream.
The Romantic Road
Germany’s Romantic Road says it in the name. The drive from Wurzburg to Fussen not only takes in some of the sweetest medieval towns in Bavaria and Baden-Wurttemberg, but also the country’s most famous castle. Neuschwanstein is straight out of a fairytale, and it’s the perfect place to play Cinderella and Prince Charming (or Princess Aurora and Prince Phillip, Princess Jasmine and Aladdin…).
With its maze of canals and fairytale bridges, Venice does romance like London does rain. A moonlit gondola ride and a Bellini with a view are just the things to get the heart aflutter, and there’s no better way to stretch out a romantic afternoon than by getting lost in the labyrinth of side streets. If that’s not enough, nearby Verona is home to the balcony of Romeo and Juliet fame.
Jane Austen lovers know that “there is not a finer county in England than Derbyshire”. The chief reason for it is that Mr. Darcy’s house, Pemberley, is there. If a love like Elizabeth and Darcy’s is what you’re after, Derbyshire is sure to help it along. From long walks in the Peak District to houses like Chatsworth (it stood in for Pemberley in the Pride & Prejudice movie), Derbyshire is one of the most romantic weekend getaways in Europe.
Call me American, but I love Paris. I adore the pretty streets, the smell of baguettes, and the cozy little bistros where nobody seems to understand my French. There’s something about the city that’s so romantic that everything exudes love. Whether it’s a stroll through Parc Monceau or a trip to the Musee Rodin, a bite of a macaron or a sip of champagne, it’s all imbued with emotion (or maybe that’s just the champagne talking…either way I’ll take it).
“I am sixteen going on seventeen”…remember when Rolf And Liesl ran around the gazebo in The Sound of Music? I do. As a child all I wanted was to be 16 and in love (ideally in a gazebo in Salzburg, definitely without Rolf turning out to be a Nazi). As an adult, I still find Salzburg incredibly romantic, and the love stories of the Von Trapp family are just the beginning. The castle on the hill, gardens in the spring, and Mozart in the air make it perfect for romance.
Above all, the most romantic weekend trips are the ones I take with someone special. This weekend I’m off to Shakespeare’s Stratford-upon-Avon with my boyfriend, but all the sonnets in The Bard’s book couldn’t make me more smitten than I already am.
How about you? What do you think are the most romantic weekend getaways in Europe?