Cheap seats: Next month — May 10-13
April 2, 2008
Timisoara, Romania: 127.80 pounds round trip
Fly Easyjet and Volareweb from London Gatwick to Timisoara.
Start exploring this cosmopolitan city, located on the northern bank of the Bega River, in Union Square, which is dominated by the Roman Catholic and Serbian Orthodox cathedrals that face each other. On the square’s south side is the 18th-century baroque palace that houses the Museum of Fine Arts, which showcases works by Flemish, German and Italian artists.
The cathedrals aren’t the only architectural marvels on the square. Others include the Nicolas Lenau College, home to Timisoara’s first theater, the art nouveau Scont Bank and many historic pastel buildings.
Behind Union Square is the Memorial Museum of the 1989 Revolution. The memorial’s exhibits include an extensive collection of Romanian militia and military uniforms. A short stroll down the road is the Banat Ethnographic Museum, which houses collections of textiles, costumes and painted glass idols in the city’s oldest building.
Typical souvenirs — beautiful blouses, skirts and tablecloths with magnificent embroidery — can be purchased at several stores on Victory Square.
For an enjoyable side trip, travel by bus 12 miles east to the Reca Vineyards, where tourists can taste white, red and rose wines as well as see the cellars and learn about wine-making.
Three months — July 4-7Hamburg, Germany: 45.98 pounds round trip
Fly Easyjet from London Luton to Hamburg International.
Germany’s second-largest city offers tourists plenty to occupy the entire family. According to the Hamburg.de Web site, metropolitan Hamburg has 31 theaters, six music halls, 10 cabarets and 50 museums.
Start your tour with a visit to the Kunsthalle, the largest art museum in Germany, and then make your way to the port on the Elbe River. There you can explore Cap San Diego and Rickmer Rickmers, both museum ships.
Enjoy the afternoon in a rowboat in the 395-acre Lake Alster in the city center. Surrounded by cafes, parks and oak and chestnut tree-lined walks, the area is a pleasant location for recovering from a busy day of sightseeing.
Spitalerstrasse is a very popular shopping district, featuring many chain stores, bookshops and pharmacies.
Head to St. Pauli Harbor — the red-light district — in the evening and stroll Reeperbahn, a street lined with small theaters, restaurants, music clubs and discos.
Airfare prices include taxes and are courtesy of each airline’s Web site. Prices were verified as of Monday afternoon when Stripes UK went to press. Deals are not guaranteed to be available; restrictions may apply.