Weekend Planning: Seven Micro-Trips To Book Now

Weekend Planning: Seven Micro-Trips To Book Now

in flight routes, last-minute accommodation and
cheap travel mean a stolen
weekend away
is easier than ever. Enter the micro-break: a way
to soak up holiday vibes in just 24 hours. While these getaways may
be bite-sized, don’t underestimate the power of a well-planned
itinerary with hourly time slots and transportation time accounted



Parisian escapades in 24 hours are best achieved when you know
the aim of your trip. To experience Paris
à la art connoisseur, curate your itinerary with that one thing in
mind. Book a stay at Hotel Brach; the 1970s sorting house
is a centralised based for
artistic excursions
. Housed in the beautiful Hotel Sale and
featuring 5000 pieces of the Spanish artist’s work, Musee
has quickly stolen our hearts away from The Louvre. If
you’re in the mood for art al fresco, wander through the gardens of
Musee Rodin where sunlight and greenery breathe fresh life into the
artist’s large-scale sculptures, or for a modern take on things,
Palais de
showcases cutting-edge exhibitions and a stroll down
Canal Saint-Martin reveals an array of galleries. Restaurants
on the agenda should include Les Marches, Girafe and Ensemble. Then
it’s back to Gare du Nord for your evening train home.


Somerset, UK

A holiday that doesn’t involve airport queues and luggage
restrictions is always a welcome change, and the three-hour

to Bruton is as idyllic as its destination. You’ll find
modern stresses melt away amid hopelessly quaint chocolate-box
cottages. Long walks in the countryside are punctuated by longer
fireside afternoon teas, so your itinerary is likely to be
leisurely in pace. A number of cosy B&Bs are available but
Durslade Farmhouse is a standout. For wholesome
fun, take a climb up King Alfred’s Tower or sample West Country
cheeses at Westcombe Dairy. Alternatively, thanks to the recent
opening of a spectacular Hauser & Wirth gallery, this small
town is now home to an exciting emerging art scene. The gallery is
a stunning showcase of contemporary art against the unlikely
delightful backdrop of English farmland.



may be the largest city in Ireland but it’s still small
enough to get your fill of Irish craic over the course of a
mini-break. Beloved for its constant reinvention as well as it is
for its rich history, you’ll find cobbled streets lead the way both
to modern refinement and historical secrets, but to make sure you
don’t waste any precious time we suggest booking onto one of
Pat Liddy’s Walking
. We’re not usually one for tourist traps, but for Pat
Liddy we’ll make an exception. An historian, artist, writer,
broadcaster, map-maker, environmental lobbyist and all around funny
bloke, there’s no one more qualified to show you around Dublin’s
nooks and crannies. Come night time, although there’s a trendy
scene in the skirtings of
the Temple neighbourhood
, a raucous Irish pub is always
preferable and when choosing from the many available – the rowdier,
the better. There’s no better way to experience Dublin than with a
pint of Guinness in hand and a friendly local chewing your ear off
– except maybe a spot Irish dancing which we also suggest you try
your hand at (preferably in Coppers, a right of passage to any
Dublin trip and an downright dive).



If anywhere makes for a fashionable micro-break, it’s Copenhagen.
Thanks to a rise of
Danish it-girls and fashion labels
, the
has earned itself a reputation so chic it’s been dubbed
the new Paris. Fashion-crazy or not, it’s a destination worthy of
your holiday days. Wander through the trendy centre of Norrebro for
a vast choice of healthy
– a crowd-pleaser is Sonny, where their eponymous combo
meal is packed with enough nutrients to help cure that hangover
from yesterday’s cocktails at Ruby’s.
here is mandatory, and whether you’re browsing for
Danish design at Stilleben or trying on everything at Ganni, you’ll
be heading home with a heavier suitcase. You’ll also want to hit up
Glyptoteket for your art-fill (go on a Tuesday when admission is
free) as well as Rosenborg castle for 16th-century opulence – the
well-groomed gardens are a highlight.



Totally disparate from England, it feels like the
two-and-a-half-hour flight from London
to Lisbon
should be much much longer – but we’re thankful it’s not. Vibrant
and exciting, Lisbon positively glows – and not just
metaphorically. The seven hills on which Lisbon is sprawled across,
form a geographical amphitheatre which effectively collects and
reflects sunlight, giving it that golden hue. With a contemporary
culture heavily informed by Portugal’s
colonial past, you’ll find a plethora of influences here from

. Take a walk across the calcada Portuguesa (the
intricately patterned limestone pavements) and find yourself
wandering between medieval ramparts, hole-in-the-wall bars and
family-run restaurants. For shopping, you won’t do better than one
of Lisbon’s many markets like Ferra de Ladra on a Tuesday and
Saturday, or Sundays spent at the LX Factory Sale. When the sun
sets, the riverside clubs invite you to indulge in glasses of ginja
(cherry wine) and hours of dancing. Check in at Memmo Alfama and
book your table at JNcQUOI with haste.


Sicily, Italy

Home to magnificent medieval
, some of the finest
Italian cuisine
and an intriguing past of coded paintings and
hidden thoroughfares,
satisfies all your Italian escapade needs. Start your
day at one of the city’s many food markets – we recommend Ballaro,
a fish and farmer’s market that stretches across alleys and
piazzas, boasting crates overflowing with fresh Sicilian produce.
The city centre features a selection of modest churches painted in
pretty pastels which, although wonderful themselves, are only a
precursor to the exquisite Monreale Cathedral. Once you’re back in
the city, make your way to Piazza Marina, a lush garden of giant
ficus trees, for a languorous stroll. Finish the night off with an
Aperol spritz at Bar Garibaldi.



has shed its reputation for coffee shops and red lights (although
both certainly do still exist) in favour of a burgeoning
art and culture scene
, and with
running twice daily from London it’s an ideal spot for a
mini jaunt. To experience the city to the fullest, it’s best to bed
down in a barge, though if you like being able to stand upright, a
canal-front lodging will do. The Canal Ring is a must-see; a triad
of beautiful canals encircling the city’s historic centre, this is
where you’ll get those classic Dutch sights: colourful houses,
nostalgic bridges and tree-lined waterways. If you’re in town at
the weekend, the Noordermarkt Square holds a weekly flea market
where you can lose hours trawling through vintage finds. A trip to
Museumplein is advised for art enthusiasts and be sure to pay a
visit to the recently renovated Rijksmuseum before getting into the
more contemporary scene at the Stedelijk.