The Magic of Europe in Autumn: Top City Breaks and Where to Stay

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As the leaves begin to change and a crispness fills the air, autumn casts its enchanting spell across Europe. It's the perfect time to embark on a city break, where you can immerse yourself in its rich history, culture, and stunning landscapes. Whether you're seeking romance, culture, or adventure, these cities and their charming hotels are the perfect place to relax this autumn. From a quaint boutique nestled in the magical city of a hundred spires, to London’s top hotspot, get ready to fall in love with Europe all over again!

Prague, Czech Republic

Prague undergoes a magical transformation as summer's warmth gently gives way to autumn's cooler embrace. With its rich history, stunning architecture, and cosy atmosphere, Prague in autumn offers travellers a unique and picturesque escape. As the leaves turn fiery shades of red, orange, and gold, the city’s historic streets and parks become a canvas of autumnal beauty. Explore the Old Town Square, Charles Bridge, and the gardens of Prague Castle to witness this natural spectacle. Attend classical music concerts in historic venues like the Rudolfinum or the Estates Theatre, where Mozart once performed. And savour hearty dishes and warm cups of mulled wine in local tavernas. As you explore its historic streets, admire its architectural wonders, and savour the flavours of Czech cuisine, you'll discover that Prague casts a unique and enchanting spell during this picturesque season. Whether you're wandering through colourful parks or enjoying a warm cup of Czech beer in a cosy pub, autumn in Prague promises an unforgettable and idyllic escape.

Where to stay:

Design Hotel Neruda

A fusion of elegance and artistry, Design Hotel Neruda is a testament to the art of design. Named after the renowned Czech writer Jan Neruda, this charming boutique is made up of three 14th-century buildings, and it's’ chic yet modern interior was designed by famous architect Borek Sipek and designer Barbora Skorpilova. Perfect for guests with a taste for aesthetically pleasing spaces packed with personality. From grand headboards to freestanding tubs, a relaxing sauna to hand-made chocolate, Design Hotel Neruda has everything you need for a cosy city break. Nestled right by the Prague Castle, this hidden gem couldn’t be more perfectly placed for exploring the magical city of a hundred spires.

London, United Kingdom

London in autumn is a magical time to visit this historic and vibrant city. The summer crowds have dwindled, the weather is crisp but generally pleasant, and the bustling metropolis transforms into an enchanting destination, where historical landmarks, cultural treasures, and charming parks take on a new level of beauty. The parks here, such as Regent’s Park, Hyde Park and more, become veritable masterpieces during this season. Not to mention Hampsteath Heath provides the most spellbinding views of the city skyline amidst a sea of reds and golds. Wander through the plethora of iconic museums and art galleries during a rainy day, watch a dazzling array of plays, musicals and performances in the West End, cosy up in a local pub with a glass of red or two by the fireplace, and be amazed by London’s Halloween enchantment that slowly creeps in as the leaves turn red. Whilst London welcomes autumn with open arms, do make sure you pack an umbrella just in case!

Where to stay:

Flemings Mayfair

London's Mayfair district is synonymous with sophistication and timeless charm. Amidst the leafy streets and historic buildings of this upscale neighbourhood lies Flemings Mayfair, a boutique hotel that encapsulates the very essence and luxury that Mayfair is known for. Its rich history, boutique charm, Michelin-starred dining, and exceptional service create a memorable experience for guests seeking a refined stay in the heart of London. Dating back to the 18th century, the storied history resonates throughout the hotel. Each room is tastefully decorated, and provides an intimate yet chic setting. Food enthusiasts will be delighted by Ormer Mayfair, having been awarded four AA Rosettes, which is part of the Flemings experience. Headed up by Executive Chef, Sofian Msetfi, the restaurant offers an exceptional dining experience with delectable tasting menus made from seasonal and locally-sourced ingredients.

Mimi's Hotel Soho

Tucked away on Frith Street, in the very heart of Soho, Mimi’s Hotel is a hidden gem that offers an elegant and intimate stay amidst the energetic pulse of the city. This boutique hotel effortlessly blends contemporary design with historic charm, creating a unique haven for travellers seeking an authentic Soho experience. The rooms feature plush furnishings and luxurious linens that ensure a restful night’s sleep, the deep colour palettes create a sophisticated yet cosy atmosphere, and the bar is a total hotspot within this bustling city. Whether it’s enjoying personalised cocktails at the hotel’s Henson’s Bar, or nursing the hangover with a delicious cup of coffee after having a taste of London’s legendary nightlife, Mimi’s Hotel Soho provides a comfortable and authentic stay for all.

For more hotel recommendations, please click here.

Venice, Italy

The iconic “City of Canals” is enchanting all year-round, but it takes on a special charm during the autumn months. As the ongoing headache of the summer crowds dwindle, the city's narrow streets and winding canals become even more inviting. Visiting Venice in autumn offers a unique and tranquil experience that showcases the city's timeless allure. Whether you’re searching for a romantic getaway, a solo trip or time away with friends, autumn offers a truly enchanting backdrop for traditional gondola rides through the canals, relaxing strolls through the landscaped gardens, exploring the stunning churches and basilicas, and more. Indulge in the modern art collections at Ca’Pesaro, home to Venetian aristocrats for centuries, be mesmerised by ceiling frescos and sweeping paintings from the early Renaissance ear at Ca’Rezzonico, celebrate the Festa della Salute (the Venice version of Thanksgiving) with the locals on November 21st, and indulge in a plethora of mouthwatering Venetian cuisine in one of their hidden restaurants. Not to mention Venice Fashion Week takes place from the 19th to the 28th of this month!

Where to stay:

Hotel Corte di Gabriela

Renowned for its elegance, attention to detail, and intimate ambience, Hotel Corte di Gabriela provides an ideal base for exploring the historic and romantic city of Venice. Nestled in the San Marco district, just steps away from some of the city’s iconic attractions, this boutique gem allows you to explore the treasures with ease. With an eco-friendly ethos and hospitality centres around sustainability, the calming comforts of this 19th-century palazzo truly makes the perfect home-away-from-home experience. Relish in the industrial-chic furnishings, be inspired by the stunning terrazzo floors and original ceiling frescoes, and immerse yourself in the ancient and contemporary harmonisation of Venice as you look out onto the glittering canals of San Marco. We highly recommend starting your day with a morning coffee and freshly-baked pastries in the wisteria-covered courtyard before heading out on your adventures!

For more hotel recommendations, please click here.

Porto, Portugal

Porto, often referred to as Oporto, is a city that effortlessly combines rich history, stunning architecture, and a vibrant modern culture. As the summer crowds subside, Porto's colourful streets and historic architecture are bathed in a golden autumn glow. Located along the banks of the Douro River in northern Portugal, this is a city of contrasts, where ancient traditions coexist with contemporary creativity. Begin your exploration in the historic heart, the Ribeira district; wander through narrow cobblestone streets lined with colourful houses, and marvel at the intricate ironwork of the balconies. Visit São Bento Railway Station, known for its stunning azulejo (ceramic tile) panels that depict Portugal's history – the main hall is a masterpiece of artistic tilework! Explore Porto's Sé Cathedral, a Romanesque gem that dates back to the 12th century, and climb the tower for mesmerising views of the city. Book lovers should not miss Livraria Lello, one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world. Its neo-Gothic architecture and intricate wooden staircase are a sight to behold. With an abundance of activities to enjoy, Porto is a city that captures the essence of Portugal's past while embracing its dynamic present. Whether you're sipping port wine by the river, exploring historic neighbourhoods, or discovering contemporary art, this place promises an unforgettable and enriching travel experience.

Where to stay:

Utopian Hotel

Travellers seeking the perfect blend of exploring the main landmarks and discovering hidden gems, Utopian Hotel is located in an excellent location. Nestled within the artistic Cedofeita neighbourhood, this stylish property gives guests the ultimate home-away-from-home experience. The seven contemporary and utterly exquisite suites are filled with state-of-the-art furnishings, designer detailings and modern bathrooms, as well as functional workspaces. There is also a magnificent apartment available for guests to enjoy, separate from the hotel, just off Porto’s main square – offering the most spellbinding panoramic views across the city skyline (possibly the best in the city!). Utopian Hotel is both luxurious and practical. With a virtual concierge service and tie-ins with local restaurants that can deliver in-room dining, this charming property is ideal for all business and leisure travellers searching for that all-in-one experience.

Berlin, Germany

The dynamic and culturally rich capital of Germany, is a captivating destination to explore in autumn. Offering a rich tapestry of experiences, from cultural immersion to culinary exploration amid the backdrop of changing seasons, Berlin entices every venturer who chooses to wander with a diverse abundance of inspiring and creative spots to explore. Take a glimpse into Germany’s history in one of the many museums, visit some iconic historical sites like the Brandenburg Gate, Berlin Wall remnants and the Holocaust Memorial, check out the plethora of local events, exhibitions and performances at venues like the Berliner Philharmonie, and be surrounded by vibrant foliage as you stroll through the Tiergarten. During October, Berlin also hosts its own Oktoberfest event with beer gardens, traditional food, and lively music – a great opportunity to embrace German culture. There are also an incredible number of markets you can visit like the Naschmarkt, where you can sample seasonal produce and artisanal foods. Try a classic currywurst, schnitzel or pretzel with a locally-brewed beer, be amazed by the illuminated light displays of the city at night, cycle along the Spree River and shop till you drop in the cool neighbourhoods of Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain.

Where to stay:

Monbijou Hotel

Just moments from the city hotspots, Monbijou Hotel is your perfect boutique hideaway. Situated in the urban heart of Berlin-Mitte, a slight gentleman’s club atmosphere lingers here, created by leather armchairs, well-stocked bookshelves, board games and wood-panelled walls. With 99 rooms and suites on offer, the wooden floors throughout create a classic and warming feeling, coupled with neutral walls and statement splashes of coloured furniture. Treat yourself to a delicious award-winning breakfast before exploring everything the city has to offer, wander up to the hotel’s roof terrace for incredible 360 degree views, and enjoy classic cocktails using the finest ingredients at the hotel bar. Imagine warming yourself by the fire with a glass of red or a tipple of whiskey after a long day of exploring; this is the life!

For more hotel recommendations, please click here.

Vienna, Austria

Vienna's imperial charm shines in autumn. Undergoing a remarkable transformation, this season offers visitors a unique and captivating experience. As the city's parks and historic sites are bathed in the warm colours of fall foliage, and the scent of roasted chestnuts fills the air, Vienna becomes a picturesque destination for travellers seeking a delightful seasonal escape. Take a stroll through the meticulously landscaped gardens of Schönbrunn Palace and Belvedere Palace, ride on a historical carousel in Prater Park, explore world-class museums like the Kunsthistorisches Museum and the Albertina, and indulge in some traditional culinary delights paired with beer or wine in some cosy local taverns. As the weather here is typically mild during autumn, it makes it the perfect time for exploring the city by foot of bicycle. The slightly cooler temperatures create a cosy atmosphere for leisurely walks along the Danube Canal or through the charming streets of the old town.

Where to stay:

Sans Souci Wien

Perfectly nestled in the city’s cultural and historic district, just a short walk from renowned attractions such as the Vienna State Opera, MuseumsQuartier, and the Hofburg Imperial Palace, Sans Souci Wien couldn’t be a more perfect place to stay. Offering an abundance of beautifully-designed rooms and suites, each uniquely decorated with a blend of classic and contemporary styles, the hotel’s restaurant, La Veranda, provides an elegant setting to enjoy Austrian cuisine. Sans Souci Wien also boasts an impressive spa and wellness area; featuring an indoor pool, sauna, fitness centre and more – the perfect place to unwind after a day of sightseeing. From its impressive collection of contemporary art, to its excellent hospitality, there’s no better place to lay your head in Vienna than here!

Belfast, Ireland

Are you searching for a seasonal retreat in Northern Ireland? Belfast in autumn provides a rich tapestry of cultural experiences, autumnal beauty, and warm hospitality. It’s a city that effortlessly combines its storied history with a vibrant present. From the Belfast Castle to a state-of-the-art museum where the Titanic was built, there’s an abundance of things to enjoy here. Take a stroll through the Cathedral Quarter to admire Belfast's vibrant street art scene; the murals and graffiti express the city's political and cultural narratives. Find tranquillity in the Belfast Botanic Gardens, a lush green oasis in the city – the Palm House and Tropical Ravine are true highlights. Enjoy a pint of Guinness or try a dram of Irish whiskey at historic establishments like The Crown Liquor Saloon and Kelly's Cellars (the pubs here are truly legendary). We also recommend taking a dray trip to the UNESCO-listed Giant’s Causeway, an otherworldly landscape of hexagonal basalt columns formed by volcanic activity. It's a natural wonder you won't want to miss! Whether you're interested in exploring its rich cultural heritage, savouring traditional Irish cuisine, or discovering its natural beauty, Belfast has something to offer every traveller.

Where to stay:

The Malone Boutique Hotel

Nestled in the leafy and upscale Malone Road area of Belfast you’ll find this chic and comfortable boutique hotel. A charming Victorian townhouse waiting to give you a warm Irish welcome, the interior is adorned with contemporary decor and modern furnishings, as well as elegant artwork and tasteful design elements that add to the boutique feel of the hotel. The Malone Boutique Hotel boasts everything from charmingly-designed rooms and suites, to an eclectic bar and restaurant. Having opened its doors in 1945, the hotel has since been owned and run by two generations of the Macklin family, and is the perfect place to lay your head in this captivating city. Revel in the history of The Malone, soak up the relaxing ambiance in their sumptuous lobby, indulge in some of the finest local produce in the Gallery Restaurant and enjoy the ‘craic’ in The Greyhound Bar.

Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon in autumn is a wonderful time to explore the city's rich cultural heritage, historic neighbourhoods, and scenic landscapes without the summer crowds and intense heat. Whether you're sipping wine at a viewpoint, enjoying Fado music, or indulging in Portuguese cuisine, Lisbon's autumn charm promises a memorable and relaxed escape in this captivating European capital. Explore Alfama, Bairro Alto and Belém without the overwhelming crowds, wander through narrow cobblestone streets, discover historic sites, and savour traditional Portuguese cuisine in local taverns and restaurants. Trek up to Miradouro da Senhora do Monte or Miradouro da Graça for breathtaking vistas across the city and the Tagus River. Taste Lisbon's delicious cuisine, featuring fresh seafood, pastries like pastéis de nata, and hearty dishes like bacalhau à brás (salted cod). Autumn is also the season for chestnuts, which you can find roasted by street vendors. Whilst the weather is still pleasant, you can also head to nearby beaches for some coastal relaxation!

Where to stay:

Hotel Lisboa Plaza

Situated on Avenida da Liberdade, one of the city’s most prestigious avenues, Hotel Lisboa Plaza makes for an excellent base for exploring Lisbon. This boutique hotel embodies the very essence of classic Portuguese hospitality, and offers a range of comfortable rooms and suites, each designed with the guests comfort in mind. With interiors that exude classic and elegant Portuguese style, featuring antique furniture and vivid designer pieces, the nostalgic energy of 1950’s Lisbon is truly inspiring here. Enjoy a delectable breakfast at the hotels’ Café Plaza, sample a cocktail or two from the honesty bar and retreat to the wondrous roof terrace for stunning panoramas across the city (we recommend doing this during the evening when the city lights up). Wanting to bring your four-legged companion? Hotel Lisboa Plaza also welcomes all small furry friends!

For more hotel recommendations, please click here.

Nicosia, Cyprus

Nicosia, the capital of Cyprus, is a city steeped in history, culture, and Mediterranean charm. While summer may bring the bustling energy of tourists to the island, autumn ushers in a quieter, more serene atmosphere, making it an ideal time to explore this captivating city. With temperatures still ranging around mid-20s celsius, you can comfortably explore its charm and natural beauty without the intense summer heat. Nicosia's historic Old Town, surrounded by Venetian walls, is a treasure trove of history and culture. Stroll through its narrow streets, admire the well-preserved architecture, and discover an abundance of quaint cafes, shops, and art galleries. Delve into Cyprus's rich history and archaeology by visiting the Cyprus Museum; housing an impressive collection of artefacts from different periods, including ancient pottery, sculptures, and jewellery. The municipal gardens at the heart of the city offer a serene escape with shaded paths and beautiful plantings. Cyprus is also known for its wine production, and autumn is harvest season! We highly recommend taking a day trip to explore local vineyards, sample Cypriot wines, and learn about the island’s winemaking traditions.

Where to stay:

MAP Hotel

Formed of 30 beautifully-designed rooms and suites that boldly tower over Nicosia’s skyline, MAP Hotel offers expansive living with a minimalistic twist. A stunning architectural beauty designed by the esteemed EKKY Studio architects, this smart hotel has become a quintessential landmark within the district. Located right in the heart of the city, the black minimalist façade contrasts beautifully with the vibrant pops of colour of the interiors and avant-garde art pieces. Its sleek furnishings, edgy atmosphere and panoramic views are just the beginning. Each of the rooms allow the guests to have a customised experience; from changes of temperature to lighting. Experience the ultimate Mediterranean fusion fine-dining at the hotel’s SCALE restaurant. With a menu that features a perfect range of tantalising delicacies and haute-cuisine practices, the playful twist of Cyprus’ delicious flavours are steeped in rich culture. Seeking some rejuvenation? MAP Hotel also boasts a relaxing spa that offer an incredible selection of massages, facials, therapy rooms and more.

recommended HIP Hotels

Explore Monbijou Hotel Berlin
Explore Design Hotel Neruda Prague
Explore Mimi's Hotel Soho London
Explore Flemings Mayfair London
Explore Hotel Lisboa Plaza Lisbon
Explore Sans Souci Wien Vienna
Explore Hotel Corte di Gabriela Venice
Explore MAP Hotel Nicosia
Explore The Malone Boutique Hotel Belfast
Explore Utopian Hotel Porto