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The most romantic cities in Europe: 13 getaways for couples  

Breathtaking sunsets, romantic rivers, medieval castles to stroll through hand in hand and wine tasting tours for two, so many of Europe's cities are made for love and romance. We've discovered 13 romantic city breaks that are perfect for celebrating Valentine's Day, honeymoons, anniversaries and other special times together. 

  1. Rome
  2. Prague
  3. Budapest
  4. Venice
  5. Paris
  6. London
  7. Amsterdam
  8. Seville
  9. Porto
  10. Bruges
  11. Istanbul
  12. Bordeaux
  13. Dubrovnik

1. Rome

Live the romance of La Dolce Vita in Rome with its cobbled squares, lush gardens and tempting trattorias serving the best of Italian cuisine. Make a wish as you throw a coin over your left shoulder into the Trevi Fountain before taking in historic sights such as Michelangelo's frescoed ceiling in the Sistine Chapel. Pick picnic goodies in a Rome street market and head to the Villa Borghese Gardens or Aventine Hill to enjoy a romantic lunch for two.

Romantic highlight: A tour of the lavish 19th-century Teatro dell'Opera di Roma. Even better, book tickets for an opera or ballet. 

2. Prague 

With elegant 17th and 18th-century buildings lining the River Vltava, exploring Prague is like stepping onto a romantic film set. Prague Castle delivers breathtaking views of red roofs and church spires while in Vyšehrad Castle, poets are buried with their works engraved on their tombstones. Look out for the picturesque houses of Golden Lane and the mechanical wonder that is Old Town Square's astronomical clock. Finish your romantic Prague getaway by enjoying a show at the National Theatre.

Romantic highlight: Petřín Park in Malá Strana. Kissing your partner in front of the statue of Karel Hynek Mácha guarantees lasting love. 

3. Budapest

Gentle strolls through charming boulevards during the day and across bridges twinkling with lights at night ensure romance is in the air in Budapest. Split your Budapest break between tranquil Buda on one side of the Danube with its thermal baths and Buda Castle, and the more vibrant Pest, rich in world-class museums and vibrant street art, on the other side. Add romance to your Buda Castle visit by riding the vintage funicular to it.

Romantic highlight: A spa day for two at the Art Nouveau Gellért Baths.

4. Venice

Venice is made for couples and the best way to experience it is by strolling around, venturing down tiny alleys and across bridges - everyone should get lost with their lover in Venice. Take a boat trip to Murano, its unique glassware is perfect for souvenirs, or the quaint fishing island of Burano with its colourful houses. If you do want to visit some historic attractions such as St Mark's Basilica, book in advance to avoid the queues.

Romantic highlight: A gondola ride for two. This could be the perfect place to propose! 

5. Paris

Paris is nicknamed the ‘City of Love’ so romance here is guaranteed. Stroll hand-in-hand around its arrondissements, admiring the city's mix of gracious Napoleonic architecture and futuristic works of steel and glass. Stop for coffee and a sticky pastry before popping into the Louvre. Soak up its glorious art including the Venus de Milo and Mona Lisa. In the evening, enjoy a romantic Seine dinner cruise aboard a boat by Bateaux Parisiens.

Romantic highlight: The Eiffel Tower. Enjoy views of Paris from the top as you sip bubbles in the Champagne Bar.  

6. London

With its history, architecture, shopping and nightlife, London is not short on romance. Surprise your partner with a private champagne tasting pod on the lastminute.com London Eye. With so many tall buildings in London, cocktails have gone skywards. Enjoy drinks with a sunset view from The Shard or the Sky Garden. Then, finish your trip to London with a romantic opera or ballet at the beautiful Royal Opera House.

Romantic highlight: Treating yourselves to a luxury hamper from Fortnum & Mason (complete with champagne) and enjoying a picnic by the lake in St James's Park. 

7. Amsterdam 

Canals are at the heart of Amsterdam's charm. Hopping on and off water taxis is a great way to visit major attractions such as the Rijksmuseum and Anne Frank House while taking a sunset cruise for two adds a touch of romance. Away from the canals, Amsterdam's cobbled streets are perfect for exploring. Stop off at the Bloemenmarkt, a floating flower market, to pick up a dozen red roses to really sweep your partner off their feet!

Romantic highlight: The Pathé Tuschinski. An ornate blend of Art Deco and Art Nouveau, this arthouse cinema is perfect for cuddling up together. 

8. Seville

Avoid the intense summer heat by visiting Seville for a romantic Valentine's Day getaway. You can still enjoy sherry and tapas on jasmine-scented terraces. At Seville's heart is a maze of narrow streets perfect for exploring together while the Royal Alcázar transports you back in time to the city's colourful Moorish past. Enjoy quiet time together in the hot pools of the Aire de Sevilla before visiting the ornate 16th-century Casa de Pilatos.

Romantic highlight: Getting lost together in the intimate streets of Santa Cruz. Enjoy a glass of wine while listening to street flamenco. 

9. Porto

With streets of colourful houses tumbling down towards the Douro, Porto is one of Portugal’s most romantic spots. Enjoy the cool interiors of port wine cellars such as Graham's Port Lodge or Caves Calém. See how Porto's iconic drink is crafted while enjoying a sip or two along the way. Take in city sights on a tram ride that starts in the Ribeira district and ends at ocean-side Foz before getting a taste of Harry Potter in Livraria Lello, one of Portugal's oldest bookshops.

Romantic highlight: Listening to Fado, Portugal's traditional music. Sip port wine (or bubbles) as you listen to the strumming of guitars. 

10. Bruges

Like Venice and Amsterdam, Bruges is a city of canals but also one of medieval charm, chocolatiers, microbreweries and intricate lace. Visit the tiny Beguinage Convent, wonder at the gilded Bruges City Hall or take a selfie at the top of the Belfry of Bruges. The best time to take a canal cruise is in the evening when the setting sun turns the buildings of Rozenhoedkaaia into a symphony of orange and red.

Romantic highlight: Minnewaterpark. Sneak a kiss as you stand on Lover's Bridge above the Lake of Love. 

11. Istanbul

Visiting a Turkish Bath such as the Catma Mescit Hammam in Istanbul is a must on any couples' getaway. Booking a massage and cleansing routine for two makes it truly indulgent. Stroll hand-in-hand through the streets of Istanbul's Grand Bazaar looking for a memento to treasure. Once the sun has disappeared over the horizon, set sail on a Bosphorus dinner cruise, the perfect way to see the city's main landmarks.

Romantic highlight: A visit to Golden Horn at sunset. The view over the flickering lights of the harbour is mesmerising. 

12. Bordeaux

Nouvelle-Aquitaine architecture such as Tour-Pey Berland with its city views and the unique La Cité du Vin help put the romance in Bordeaux. Cruising along the River Garonne is the perfect way to see these and over 300 other listed buildings. Any romantic getaway to Bordeaux, however, should focus on wine. Enjoy wine tasting workshops for two or take an excursion to a nearby wine region such as Saint-Emilion and Sauternes. In the evening, enjoy a live show at the magnificent Grand Theatre.

Romantic highlight: Touring the city in a classic Citroen DS, which takes in Place des Quinconces, St Andrew's Cathedral and Place Gambetta.  

13. Dubrovnik

Romance is easy to find in Dubrovnik. Simply take a walk through the Old Town where cobbled streets are lined with Baroque buildings. Find a quiet square to sip a glass of bubbly as you watch the world go by. For a different perspective on Dubrovnik, ride the Dubrovnik Cable Car to the top of Mount Srd. This is the perfect vantage point at sunset.

Romantic highlight: A private boat trip to the Elaphiti Islands. The crowds are left behind as you swim in secluded bays. 

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