I’ve got big plans. Huge ones in fact, and they started back in 2016 when I decided that enough was enough, I wanted to see more of the world. These plans include seeing as many places as Europe as I can manage before I fall pregnant, and our travel plans change with the changing nature of our family.

For now, I’m trying to see Europe one city-break at a time and am slowly but surely feeling the European magic that is on my doorstep with lots of weekend city breaks. If I could travel every weekend I could, and if travelling every weekend were a reality, these would be the first five places I would visit.


Firmly at the top of my bucket list is Riga, Latvia’s unsung capital city. I’ve wanted to visit Riga for some time now, largely because every picture I see looks like everything I want a European capital to look like. With gothic spires dominating the landscape, cobbled streets and pretty coloured buildings, the Baltic’s largest capital is somewhere I’d love to wander for a weekend.

European Bucket List

I thought I was over my obsession, but one of my favourite UK bloggers Erica recently visited, and as well as being absolutely GLUED to her instagram for her entire trip, her Riga blog post has got me wishing and hoping and almost booking. The colour, the architecture and the goulash is calling me hard right now, so go and check out Erica’s post and see if you fall for Riga too.


I’ve been dreaming of Tallinn for a while now. The fusion of modern and medieval intrigues me, and when I look at pictures I’m not convinced I’ve really seen anywhere like it. Which is why I want to go! I want to be inside this fairy-tale city, inside its ancient city walls and walking its streets imagining what it was like all those years ago.

European Bucket List

Reading On The Luce’s post about visiting Tallinn in the snow has given me food for thought about when I might visit! Although I’m a little bit done with freezing cold European city breaks, the medieval buildings look so pretty and charming dusted with snow that it is hard to resist.

Looking for inspiration for your next European city break? Try this list!Click To Tweet


I feel like Copenhagen is the city break that has alluded me for many years. I’ve had such an opportunity to go, considering that Mr Sparrow is keen, but for some reason we’ve always prioritised other places in Europe. I think this is because of its reputation for being expensive (Oslo nearly broke us financially!), but I cannot help but think with a little careful planning, this waterfront bliss could be mine.

European Bucket List

I’m desperate to stroll, to hang out in cool bars and to see Christiana with my own eyes. I’ve been super inspired by other travel bloggers who have all visited Copenhagen including Sophie Cliff and Amy Liz, and we’ve even covered it over on the blog I co-edit, Unsorry Magazine.

Whilst Copenhagen is unlikely to be on the cards this year, I’m trying to get the pennies together for a March 2018 break which would including Copenhagen, Malmo and Stockholm. If anyone has done anything similar, please leave comments below!


After falling extremely hard for Lisbon, moving to Portugal is all I think about. In lieu of that, I’d quite like to visit Portugal’s other popular city break destination, Porto. It’s river setting, Portuguese food, hillside culture and epic views have got me extremely excited, and that is before we talk about the Port!

European Bucket List

Brilliant blogger Beverley from Pack Your Passport went on an amazing solo trip to Porto,  and everything about her post screams COME AND VISIT ME RIGHT NOW. So many of my city break choices have been full of cold and bleak weather, but with Porto you’ve got a pretty good chance of finding some sun, which makes me want to visit more.


Mr Sparrow and I have talked about Croatia a lot recently, largely as a summer holiday destination – a quick European jaunt to a beach (which isn’t Cyprus, because we always end up there in a pinch) with maybe some culture and castles and whatnot thrown in. We’ve been discussing Split, but to be honest, whether its a summer holiday or not I’ve got to get myself to Dubrovnik, and soon.

European Bucket List

Being surrounded by marble streets, baroque buildings and the deep blue Adriatic sea certainly has its plus points, but for me I think walking the city walls and forts would provide me with endless pleasure and happiness. And those views! Beautiful.

Where do you want to visit in Europe? Why not check out my Europe city break posts to see if I’ve visited somewhere on your list?


City Breaks | European Travel | Travel Tips | Europe

City Breaks | European Travel | Travel Tips | Europe
City Breaks | European Travel | Travel Tips | Europe

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  • Oooooh Riga is absolutely top of my list too! x
    Sophie Cliff

  • Oooh some great cities on the list, I’d love to visit Porto! I recently went to Copenhagen in February and absolutely loved it, there so much to see and do! I’d probably recommend going in warmer months though, it was freezing! xo


  • I’m desperate to visit Riga and Tallinn, too! P.S. if you need someone to come to Porto with you I could NOT be more keen! 😉 xx

  • We went to Riga year before last in November, it was awesome – great value amazing places to eat and drink too!
    THOUGH we did have a small incident involving nearly sinking a segway – so beware the segways!!!
    We stayed in a great hotel if you needed a recommendation!
    Porto is a long time love of mine, mainly due to the Port obvs!

  • I have only been to Copenhagen and Dubrovnik out of these, so now I know I need to get my ass on a plane this summer! Beautiful cities <3

    — Lisa // FjordsandBeaches.com

  • I absolutely loved our time in Porto! Such an amazing city with delicious drinks and food. I’ve heard fantastic things about Tallinn and Riga so will have to add these two cities to the list of places to visit!

  • Adrianna Vogel

    wow you put all those places I haven’t visit yet and they’re on my list! I though I’ve seen a lot of Europe but I am glad you added those not so popular places! You should also add Krakow, Poland to that list! I recently visited that city and its amazing! I heard Riga is really nice too! Good luck with your plans!!

  • Ektala La Temeriaria

    WoW! this reminded me that i’m European but I don’t know enough about some countries. Visited Porto and Dubrovnik because I always chose southern destinations. But your sections about Riga, Tallin and Copenhagen are so inspiring that I will add to my bucket list for sure!

  • Jen Yap

    i never even heard of the first 2 cities but definitely looks like a must visit. Dubrovnik is top of my list

  • I think I would love to visit Copanhagen and Dubrovnik! But Tallinn also looks interesting to me. If I plan to go to Europe, I would definitely stop by to those cities 🙂

  • Marissa Abao

    I like your list. They are diverse and all great places to explore. You would be eating exciting foods too from these places. I am particularly interested to visit Copenhagen because it just so pretty. I do think that you really need to save a lot before going there because I have read that it is expensive to be in Copenhagen.

  • From the list of bucket list cities, I still need to visit Porto and Dubrovnik which I’ll do this year. Porto is next on my list, I hope I enjoy it as much as Beverley.

  • Wanderers Hub

    Copenhagen and Dubrovnik have been on our list since a long time too. I think it is now the right time to plan our trip to these gorgeous cities. Love your list

  • Lovely selection of cities. Especially Riga, its such a beautiful place. Would love to visit Copenhagen someday, just for those colorful buildings beside the river.

  • Gokul Raj

    I would love to visit Copenhagen some day. Love the architecture of the place.

  • Lyn – A Hole in my Shoe

    Sam, I can’t believe I have been to none of these gorgeous places, but they are all places I really want to see. Such a shame Australia is just so far away from Europe and there is only such one can experience each trip.

  • Maya Maceka

    I love that this list is full of off-the-beaten-path destinations and not your usual city breaks! Really makes me want to visit the Baltics… Riga and Tallinn look amazing!

    Enjoy your upcoming trip to Barcelona! Can’t wait to follow along 🙂

  • Dubrovnik is much more amazing than Split. Split’s also amazing, but if I had to choose between the two, I’d go to Dubrovnik. That said though, you don’t have to choose, because you could just take a cruise from either one to the other, with some stops along the way.