For many of us January is a boring month. You’ve spent too much over Christmas and New Year and you feel like reining in your expenses, and after a month of overindulgence a detox is on the cards. Basically what that spells is a lot of time spent at home. No nights out, no dinners and a packed lunch every day at work.

It can get a bit depressing. Which is why we think it’s the perfect time for a city break. You can get some great deals in January as it’s well out of peak time, so you don’t need to worry too much about what you’re spending. It will also add some excitement to the most boring month of the year.

Here’s our guide to the best city breaks in January, brought to you by Virgin Money Travel Insurance. If your holiday in January is the first of many this year, remember to purchase annual multi trip cover.

If for you this is the only holiday this year, it’s time to make it a good one. And don’t forget your single trip travel insurance from Virgin Money. Now let’s get planning.


This famous Italian city is a stunning option for a city break at any time of the year, but in summer it can get so overcrowded it detracts a little from its splendour. In winter however, the streets are deserted and you can take in sights such as the Piazza San Marco and Doge’s Palace without the masses of tourists. The mist over the many canals gives the city an eerie and picturesque feel. Mid January is the best time to go, as the New Year tourists have gone home, so you can enjoy the quiet time before the carnival in February. It’s a great time to find a top deal on your accommodation.


Once upon a time, this was the place in Europe to enjoy a break in winter. With cheap flights from many of the UK airports, for some it still is. The climate is fairly mild and while the sea may not be warm enough for swimming it still retains its Azure colour that makes the views breathtaking. Things will be a little cheaper too, and if you fancy heading to top local areas such as St. Tropez or Monte Carlo you’ll find it a lot quieter than in summer – perfect for exploring.


When you think of a city break in winter, thoughts of wrapping up against the elements and shivering while you see the sights immediately spring to mind. But it doesn’t have too, with Marrakech a great option at this time of year. Yes it may be a little more expensive, but feasting on this unique culture will always make January a little more exciting. Visit the souks, palaces, exotic gardens and stunning tombs while the crowds are smaller and the heat bearable.


OK, so this is one where you may be spending some time wrapped up against the elements. Amsterdam in January is cold, so be prepared to battle against a chilling wind and even some snow when meandering the tight cobbled streets. It is worth it though. There’s the Van Gogh museum, Anne Frank House and the Rijksmuseum just to get you started before exploring the intricate canal network and array of bars, restaurants and coffee shops.