How to take the best out of your weekend Getaway

Leggi in italiano
It’s such an amazing thing to pack for a long journey, thinking about all the amazing things you’ll be doing in your some-month some-where meet some-one able to tell you some-thing about the place you’re going to call home for a while, isn’t it?

Other times we just have to be satisfied with a one week trip to learn more about how it feels to be in a city that you’ve been dreaming of for a while.

Sabrina in Melbourne

Sabrina in Melbourne – long and amazing trip 🙂

But, but…
but now I’m here, checking if I can put 80 or 50 euros on my pre-paid card (the one that I use to book flights and hotels/hostels) and see if I can book, within the end of the day, a very low cost flight to Milan since it’s from there that my very low cost flight for Warsaw will leave in a couple of weeks.

And I’m going to stay there just for 3 days, in one of my emergency-getaway-weekends, booked on the spur of a crazy moment when my brain told me:
“stop working and stop talking, I can’t stand you anymore, book a f**** flight”.

It happens more than once in a while, to tell the truth. I can say me and my luddite brain are kind of expert in weekend getaways.

And over the years I’ve learned a bit about how to get the best out of a week end trip! And now I’ll tell you some of my secrets to come back happy and satisfied (and even relaxed) from such a short journey.

sabrina & amazing weekend getaway in Sofia

sabrina & amazing weekend getaway in Sofia

#1 – Make a plan…

I think it’s useless to buy a city guide (well, I’s up to your taste, I know many people love paper city guides and I respect it).
I like searching on the internet and mainly on travel blogs the best and suggested things and places to visit.
Then, I look for those closer to my hotel/hostel and that can be easily reached on foot (I’m an epic walker… if you are used to have short trips you’ll become one).

So, you have in mind (and mark down on your smartphone or wherever) a map and a plan of the things that you can do without stressing yourself.

#2 – don’t follow your plan

We all know that the reason why it’s worth making plans, is to state your absolute mind freedom choosing not to follow a plan that you made.

When you’re in another city, in another country, you’ll see that everything is a bit (or very) different than what you see on line and/or in paper guides.

When you’re finally there, it’s your taste and feeling that melt with the place and makes it look different. So it’s up to you to decide what to do and where to go.

So, is the previous plan useless? No, it’s not.
Because thanks to that you have in mind the most important attractions that you like and you feel more confident with the city.

For instance, if you’ve planned to visit a museum but an unexpected sunny and ‘springy’ day comes out, you can hijack it all and choose the biggest city park to relax.

#3 – keep calm, you can’t see everything

Yummy and unplanned lunch in Timisoara (at 4pm!!). It lasted 2 hours but we got out happy :-)

Yummy and unplanned lunch in Timisoara (at 4pm!!). It lasted 2 hours but we got out happy 🙂

Keep calm, leave with the clear perception and conviction that you can’t see ‘everything’ (I still don’t know exactly what people mean with ‘have you seen everything?’).
And you know what? who cares?
If you expect to visit all the MUST SEE you’ll be frustrated even after a 10 months travel.
There are 3 ways to visit a city:

the way the others do it
the way you would like to do it
The way you’ll finally and freely do it.

Choose your own way and be happy!

#4 – Make this trip… you own trip

Do what you feel like to. Even resting in the hotel for a couple of hours longer than what you’ve planned. When you made the above mentioned plan you didn’t know how tired you would be (or how amazing and cozy the hotel would be).

O'Connel Street, Dublin

O’Connel Street, Dublin

Are you walking down O’Connel Street in Dublin and feel ravished by a street music band? Stay there, don’t run away just to run after your running-out time.

You have a lifetime to go back and see the National Gallery, but maybe you’ll never bump into that live amazing music again.

#5 – Walk (at least, that’s the best for me)

I think walking a lot is one of the best ways to get the best out of your long/short-term travels.

Because in this way you don’t just enjoy each destination or “steps of your trip plan”, but also the ways that lead you there. They can be the main city roads as well as the secundary shortcuts and it will be like enjoying and feeling more the place you’re visiting.

If you like, read abt my weirdest travel habits

If you like, read abt my weirdest travel habits

#6 – Take advantage of technology 

Use your smartphone and Apps to be guided. There are a lot of city map Apps that will allow you re-plan your next step basing on your current position.
Are you walking down the streets of London to get to the Tate? You are tired and you want to go inside that small tea-house? Go and choose your cup of tea , take a rest and search with this App what’s closer than the Tate that you can also enjoy (a small city market, an old books library and so on).

Remember that the absolute protagonist of your travel is not the place you’ll photograph but YOURSELF inside that place, your own experience.

I think a good travel is not like a national geographic picture. Let’s say the good travel is like a non-post-edited selfie 🙂 


  • Kimberly

    What fantastic tips! Ones I could really follow, I would love to travel one day and these tips are handy and seem a lot more relaxed. Its what a holiday is for =)

  • Desirée Crowley

    Ahh this makes me want to go on a trip so bad! I am totally the type to want to see it all and get the most out of it, but that’s not always gonna happen. Great post!


  • Shannon McKenna

    So true! I especially agree with the walking. There is nothing better than walking around and exploring a new town or city on foot. My boyfriend and I were in Europe for the month of November and we walked a total of 174 miles (tracked by his Iphone). It’s not only the best way to really get in touch with the culture, but it’s a great guarantee that you won’t gain that seemingly inevitable vacation weight. 🙂 Great article! Well put.

  • IamVagabond

    Very interesting post. Some great images and a different way to present your travel pics 🙂 Very nice !!

  • Pranshu

    I completely agree that any foreign country is very different than what we can think of it. Great thoughts and lovely description.

  • Nina Alexander

    #3 kills me… You must know this yourself as a travel blogger – you kinda feel obliged to visit any place you believe a reader must be interested about hearing. And that’s just the beginning of my problem – I am also super curious and hyper active when I travel which is why I always end up with sore feet.

    Thank you for reminding me – I really can’t do it all and can’t see it all… Especially if I really want to enjoy the trip.

  • Varun

    Nice tips. Always wondered what i had to do for a weekend. The best point was number 2. Don’t follow your plan 🙂 haha. I never do.

  • Florence

    Yes! Everyone has to know that ! I always have to remember that I cannot visit and see everything in a short trip 😀

  • Celeste Sundragonlady Choi

    #3 will be me all day. Keep Cal because we won’t be able to see everything. Thanks for sharing your experience, looks like you had an amazing time. 😉

  • Sarah

    I love this post. I love to walk everywhere so next time I go away for the weekend I’ll be sure to bear in mind your tips

  • Paige

    This is great! I have always been a bit of a crazy traveler. I love going places for short quick trips and seeing as much as you can! But sometimes a whirlwind trip is the most exciting and memorable way to do it!

  • Corinna @ The Mommy Clause

    Some great tips! I especially like #3 about keeping calm because you can’t see it all. I think often, those of us who can only swing short getaways get burned out easily by trying to do too much. The secret is in enjoying what you can do – and hopefully getting to return!

  • Gladys

    Awesome suggestions. I have certainly not done as much traveling as I want to, but I plan to. I would want to be in the pictures that I take more often to capture my feelings about the place in the pictures.

  • Candace Wells

    This is a great article especially for someone like me who doesn’t travel often. However, when I do travel I feel the need to try to see everything. Thank you for taking the pressure off.

  • Anshula

    I completely love these tips! Especially #4. I always forget that one, as I try to see everything (which isn’t realistic in any sense).

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