Lonely Planet Writer

These cities have been named the best in Europe for a city break

A survey of the best cities in Europe for a city break has jointly placed Krakow in Poland and Valencia in Spain at the top. The Which? Travel survey saw 4353 members ranking the cities based on a combination of historic charm, cultural interest, good places to eat and drink and excellent value for money. They also rated accommodation, shopping and ease of getting around to give a complete picture of the city in question.

Illuminated Sukiennice building and St. Mary’s Church at night, Krakow, Poland. Image: dziewul/500px

Both Krakow and Valencia scored 91%, and the rest of the top ten comprised of 3. Budapest 4. Bologna 5. Berlin 6. Seville 7. Barcelona 8. Vienna 9. Funchal and 10. Amsterdam. “Krakow topped our table with its Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches on every corner, not to mention alfresco cafes strewn across street upon street of cobblestones,” says Which? Travel. “But the best bit? Krakow continues to resist the urge to shake down visitors with extortionate prices.”

A street in the old town of Krakow, Poland. Image by ©Milan Gonda/Shutterstock

Krakow was the only city in the survey to score five stars for value for money. Not only is the average hotel price just £63 ($82.13) per room, per night, but eating out can also be very reasonable. “Avoid the main square rip offs and you’ll get a good meal for less than ten pounds ($13.04), and a pint of beer for two pounds ($2.61).”

Square of Saint Mary’s, fountain Rio Turia and cathedral in Valencia, Spain. Image: Matej Kastelic/500px

Sharing the top spot with Krakow, Valencia was described as being quirky, innovative and full of surprises. “Valencia is also far cheaper than Spain’s other big hitters – Madrid and Barcelona,” says Which? Travel. “You can enjoy a glass of rioja for as little as €2.50 ($2.84). And a decent two or three-course menu del dia (set menu) will set you back around €12 ($13.63).”

To read more about the survey, see here.