It’s almost that time of the year – time to pack the suitcases and dig out the passports from the “miscellaneous” drawer. For the first time in a long time, there are no UK covid travel restrictions this summer.
So many holidaymakers will be looking to jet off somewhere nice. With East Midlands Airport just down the road from Burton and Swadlincote, it is by far the most convenient airport for people in East Staffordshire and South Derbyshire.
There are so many amazing places you can fly to from the Castle Donington airport. And for a lot of these, you don’t even have to spend ages on the flight.
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So here are some of our top picks for places you can fly to from East Midlands Airport for under four hours. All of these destinations will have different depatrure days, so make sure you check ahead before booking.
Time from EMA: Two hours 30 minutes
Most famously known as the setting of William Shakespeare’s famous tragic romance Romeo and Juliet, this city in Northern Italy is one of the main tourist destinations in the region. Fans of The Bard’s work can recreate the famous balcony scene at the Casa di Giulietta, where there is a balcony, as well as information about the play.
The area is most known for the Castelvecchio and Ponte Scaligero. The impressive fortress and bridge date back to the 14th century. The towers of the fortress offer impressive views across the city and the bridge is a favorite among locals and tourists to walk around.
The city also features one of the best-preserved Roman amphitheaters in all of Italy, the Arena di Verona. Built around 290 AD, the seating is intact and in regular use.
Its 44 rows of seating can accommodate 22,000 spectators and the venue is the home of the Verona Opera Festival in the Summer, one of the biggest opera festivals in the world. It also has hosted gigs from such pop and rock names as Adele, Radiohead, Bruce Springsteen, One Direction, Duran Duran and Sting.
Time from EMA: Two hours 50 minutes
(Image: Atlantide Phototravel/Getty Images)
On the banks of the River Danube, you can follow in the footsteps of English singer-songwriter George Ezra and explore the capital of Hungary. The Eastern city is most famous for its thermal springs. These pools have been used for therapeutic purposes since prehistory and still draw tourists wanting to experience the relaxing and rejuvenating thermal baths.
Known as a cultural highlight of Eastern Europe, Budapest features many significant collections of art and artifacts. Budapest’s Castle Hill contains many of the city’s most important medieval monuments and museums. These include the Hungarian National Gallery in the main wing, while in the south wing, the Budapest History Museum occupies four floors.
For foodies, Budapest’s Central Market Hall is a must. Dating back to 1987, the market is most famous for its fresh produce and food stuffs across 10,000 square meters.
Time from EMA: Two hours and 30 minutes
The capital of Catalonia, this popular tourist destination is top of the lists of many European traveller’s favorite cities. On the hot Balearic Sea coastline, many look to Barcelona as a top tourist spot for a spot of sun.
One of the main draws for the city is the Basílica de la Sagrada Família. This towering cathedral is one of the most famous churches in the world. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this building was designed by legendary Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Famously, Gaudí had no firm ideas in mind, preferring to alter and add to the plans as work progressed. Since his death in 1926, several other architects have continued work on the Basilica based on Gaudí’s plans. Construction is still ongoing and expected to be completed by 2026.
One of the most iconic shopping districts is La Rambla. Known as the Catalan equivalent to Champs-Élysées, the street features wide pedestrian sidewalks lined with shops, restaurants, and outdoor cafés. The street contains some of the most famous and expensive shops in Southern Europe and is a must for any shopaholic.
Football fans will be all too familiar with Barcelona, as the Nou Camp is the largest stadium in Europe and second-largest in the world. Guided tours of the home of FC Barcelona take you through the dressing rooms, the player’s tunnel, the trophy room and the commentator’s boxes. There is also a museum dedicated to the history of the football club and stadium.
Time from EMA: Two hours and 20 minutes
The capital of Poland has gone through many different iterations over history. All those different influences of different cultres make Warsaw a unique and vibrant city to visit as a tourist.
One of the key areas is the Old Town. Dating back to the thirteenth century, this area features narrow roads to explore. THe centre is the Old Town Market Square, which was destroyed by bombs in World War II. Following the war, it was restored to its prewar condition and is a perfect place to try traditional Polish food such as stuffed cabbage leaves and grilled mutton.
The Museum of the History of Polish Jews is an important site for those wishing to remember those killed in the Holocaust. Built on the former site of the Warsaw Ghetto, where Polish Jews were confined during the Holocaust, the museum remembers those that lost their lives in the concentration camp, as well as a look back on a history of Jewish people in Poland.
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