We check out some of the coach holiday options available just a short hop from British shores.
The city of romance has long been one of Europe's most popular short break destinations, and with good reason. The Champs Elysees, Eiffel Tower, Montmartre and the beautiful Sacre Coeur, the Louvres, Pompidou and Musee Dorsee, not to mention everything from fine dining to cosy bistros, Paris is a must-see.
With Crusader Holidays, you can take a four-day trip to the glorious French capital and experience this magical city yourself, and either explore at your own leisure or take advantage of excursions to all the most famous sights, the extraordinary Palace of Versailles, and the Latin Quarter on the Left Bank, where you'll be able to absorb this buzzing area by night. The trip includes travel by coach with three nights at a three-star hotel (bed and breakfast) for £199 per person.
Belgium is becoming increasingly popular amongst weekend breakers, and its proximity makes it ideal for coach travellers.
Leger holidays offer both a four-day and a five-day tour, taking in some of the country's most beautiful cities and allowing holidaymakers the chance to explore. For example, the four-day tour begins in Bruges, where canals, cobbled streets and the famous chocolates take centre stage. An optional excursion to Ypres allows Brits to pay their respects to the fallen at the Menin Gate, where the Last Post is played every evening - a humbling and emotional experience.
Moving on to the capital, Leger's tour arrives in Brussels, where a guided tour will show you the Royal Palace of Laeken, St Michael's Cathedral, and the Grand Place market square, before leaving you to explore the history of this splendid city. On the return to Channel, there's even the chance to wander along the promenade at Ostend, known as the 'Queen of Belgium's seaside resorts'.
The trip includes accommodation and breakfast in three-star hotels, and costs from £229 for the four-day tour, or £299 for the five-day holiday, which includes a stay in Ghent.
For those keen to travel a little further afield, a trip to Prague, Vienna and Budapest offers the chance to see some of the finest cities in Europe.
A nine-day trip with Shearings Holidays takes in all three, and begins with an overnight stay in Liege, Belgium. Holidaymakers can enjoy the scenery as the coach travels through Germany to the Czech Republic, where a two-night stay in Prague gives you plenty of opportunity to wander through this charming, historic city, known as the 'City of a Hundred Spires'. A three-night stay in Vienna offers excursions to the famed Spanish Riding School, the Hofburg Palace, formerly Austria's imperial residence, and the Gothic masterpiece that is St Stephen's Cathedral.
Having sampled the delights of Vienna, it's on to Budapest, Hungary's capital, where the two original districts, Buda and Pest, are separated by the Danube River. The return journey also includes an overnight stay in both Germany and Northern France.
Prices for the nine-day tour, which includes luxury hotel accommodation with breakfast and dinner, start from £629 per person.
Famed for its glitz and glamour, the French Riviera makes for a nonetheless relaxing and sun-soaked break. And a coach trip to the south of the country affords tourists the chance to take in the hugely varied French countryside. With Door2Tour holidays, you can experience France in all its varied glory, travelling from Calais to the centrally located Dijon, famous for its mustard. After an overnight stay with room and breakfast, the coach continues southwards, arriving at the coastal resort of St Raphael for a four-night stay with bed, breakfast and dinner included.
From there, excursions along the beautiful Cote D'Azur will take you to glamorous Cannes, medieval Mougins, and the sandy beaches and impressive yacht-filled marinas of St Tropez. A half day visit to the ancient Roman town of Frejus, where you'll be hard pressed not to splash a little cash at the buzzing morning market, before making the two-day journey home.
Prices start from £549 per person.
Tis already the season to start thinking about Christmas, and if you're stuck for gift ideas, a visit to some of Europe's most fabulous Christmas markets might just give you a little extra inspiration.
With Gold Crest holidays, you can take a four-day festive break that includes visits to some of Germany's finest seasonal markets, including Cologne, home to no less than six Christmas markets, Monschau, one of Western Germany's most beautiful towns, and an evening trip to the stunning Merode Castle, lit up by thousands of candles and torches, which forms a beautiful backdrop to the Christmas village in the castle grounds.
Prices for the four-day trip start from £219, and include three nights' accommodation with continental breakfast.
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