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Choosing a holiday destination based on the season is important when it comes to making the most out of your trip. Whether you are interested in music festivals, food and beer or Christmas markets - planning is key. 

Looking for some travel inspiration? We’ve lined up a year’s worth of sensational destinations to spice up your travel diary – and they’re all just a train ride away.

Spring

    • Paris in the springtime

      Paris is always a good idea – but, as the old crooners know, it’s especially lovely in the spring. Ride along the Canal Saint-Martin, picnic under the cherry blossoms in Parc Monceau, discover art amid the blooms in the Musée Rodin Sculpture Garden. Or just watch the world go by from a classic pavement café.

    • March: Rotterdam

      Ignore the spring showers and feed your mind in cutting-edge Rotterdam. On Museumnacht010 on 2 March, more than 30 museums and galleries stage a city-wide arty party, opening their doors till 1am.

    • April: Amsterdam

      Hit Holland at the height of the tulip season; in Amsterdam, find them in abundance at Bloemenmarkt. On the 27th, paint the town orange for King's Day (Koningsdag), the annual 24-hour street party.

    • May: Strasbourg

      The Alsace region is famed for its food, wine and beer – the best of German and French cuisines. Strasbourg restaurants go crazy for the locally grown white asparagus, which makes an appearance in May.

Summer

  • Dans le Sud

    The Provençal town of Avignon is a delight in the warmer months, the perfect time to potter around its historic streets and medieval marvels. July's annual performing arts festival offers not only an exceptional programme of international theatre, but stunning alfresco venues.

  • June: Marseille

    Beat the crowds and head to the Med for an early-season dip. Choose between sandy city beaches – such as buzzing Pointe Rouge – and the secluded rocky coves of the Calanques, some accessible only by boat.

  • July: Ghent

    Under-the-radar Gentse Feesten is in fact the largest open-air arts fest in Europe. Dance outdoors, catch free gigs, gawp at street performers and strut your stuff in the colourful parades.

    19-28 July 2019.

  • August: Lyon

    The locals are out of town, but they leave behind a laid-back vibe. Book at one of Lyon's 19 Michelin restaurants (Paul Bocuse is the holy grail), hit a summer festival or cool off in the Rhône-side lido.

Autumn

    • Fall for Bruges

      Fill you Insta account with snaps of this picture-postcard city, looking even more spectacular in the soft Autumn sunlight with foliage ablaze. Sadly, pics can't capture the heady scent of chocolate that wafts from the doors of the city's world-renowned chocolatiers.

    • September: Antwerp

      Fewer tourists plus mild weather equal prime conditions for urban adventure. Peruse the markets, or wander the waterfront neighbourhoods around Eilandje for cool new architecture and culture hub MAS.

    • October: Paris

      Embrace the longer nights and party from dusk till dawn on Nuit Blanche. For this atmospheric annual event, buildings and icons are enlivened by light shows, and many museums open for free.

    • November: Lille

      Get cosy in Lille's pretty medieval centre. Indulge in some local sweet treats such as waffles in the Belle Époque surrounds of Méert, or one of the aptly named whipped cream merveilleux from Fred.

Winter

  • Hit the slopes

    Direction Bourg-Saint-Maurice: top ski resorts are just a snowball’s throw away. It’s not all about the snow, though: gooey raclette, spiced vin chaud and roaring fires are après-piste must-dos.

  • December: Brussels

    Bring on the festive cheer with a visit to the 2km of Christmas markets stretching the streets around Grand-Place. On 6 December, join Belgium's holiday celebrations for St Nicholas Day.

  • January: Amsterdam

    Atmospheric art pieces shine during the annual Light Festival. What could be more gezellig than cruising the canals on a winter's evening as illuminations play across the water's surface?

  • February: Paris

    Embrace the fromage: this is the city for romance. Dinner à deux, strolls by the Seine, swoon-worthy views from Montmartre… Lovers have always loved Paris, and with good reason.

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