Whether you like it or not, Valentine’s Day is less than a month away. This means we’ll soon be surrounded by loved-up couples swooning at each other at dinner tables all over the country.

Come on, don’t pretend you’re not excited.

If you want to avoid all the hype, give the gift of surprise, or use the occasion as an excuse for a cheap yet romantic weekend away, we’ve come up with some unusual city break ideas that allow you to whisk your other half away without going somewhere too predictable.

Marrakech Souks by Michael Camilleri via Flickr


There’s something mysterious about Marrakech. One of the best bits is enjoying the hustle and bustle of the Moroccan capital while wandering the medina and grabbing a bargain in the souks. Sure, haggling for jewellery might not be everyone’s idea of romance, but you’ll definitely pick up something better than a Hallmark card along the way.

If you do fancy a more relaxing experience, you can take a hot air balloon ride over the spectacular Atlas Mountains, or spend a day in a traditional hammam. It’s cheap to get there too – we’ve got bargains here.

Northern Lights by Beverly & Pack via Flickr


The aurora borealis (better known as the Northern Lights) are at the top of many people’s bucket list, and Iceland is one of the best places to admire the colourful swirls of sky as they pass over the earth.

Reykjavik, the capital, is a great option for a short break – you can relax in the Blue Lagoon thermal spa, visit the original geyser (boiling water erupting from the ground) or go for a wander around the museums and galleries.

Copenhagen Canal by Luke Mckernan via Flickr


For a romantic city break straight out of a fairy tale – the city was home to Hans Christian Andersen after all – look no further than Copenhagen.

With so many winding canals, you’d be forgiven for thinking that you’ve stepped into Venice, but the Danish capital is far less crowded making it a more relaxing city to explore. Walk along the cobbled paths, admire the multi-coloured buildings and enjoy a romantic stroll through Østerbro, one of the leafiest districts in the city.

Don’t forget to try the local delicacy of salt liquorice too.

Krakow Main Square by tgraham via Flickr


Krakow is one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe, with cobbled streets and Gothic buildings everywhere you look.

Stay in a boutique hotel (we’ve got deals from £199) and take a day trip out of the city to the Wieliczka salt mines, or else stay local and explore the underground bars in the Jewish Quarter. If you fancy a spot of romance, the Wisla Boulevards alongside the Wisla River are perfect for an evening stroll and has beautiful views of the city.

Need inspiration for Valentine’s Day? Take a look at our other city breaks for a cheap deal.


Images: ReadephotographyMichael CamilleriBeverly & PackLuke Mckernan,  tgraham via Flickr