Everyone has been bitten by the wanderlust bug recently, but for those of you who can’t just take off without a care in the world, you can always turn to mini getaways to satisfy your need to escape modern life. Here are just a few top cultural European destinations that are perfect for those wanting to experience different traditions, beliefs, and local delicacies.

1. Athens, Greece

Birthplace of the Olympic games, and with a history that dates back thousands of years to the days of celebrated philosophers, it isn’t hard to see why Athens should be at the top of your list for a cultural break. Whether it’s the promise of Mediterranean fayre and fresh seafood cooked to perfection that draws you here, or the wide range of archaeological sites and historical monuments you want to explore, Athens has it all – and don’t forget, it also has a thriving nightlife scene.

2. Copenhagen, Denmark

Slick and sophisticated, Copenhagen is the ultimate destination for anyone who craves contemporary design and a cosmopolitan lifestyle. Gurus to the rest of the globe when it comes to style, Copenhagen is home to some of the most beautiful modern architecture in the world, including the futuristic curves of the National Aquarium of Denmark, and ultramodern ski slope, Amager Bakke.

3. Vienna, Austria

For anyone reading this article with a passion for music, Vienna will be a home from home for you. On the one hand, you can experience the traditional side of Viennese culture, with a stroll through the quaint buildings of the Old Town, seeing a show at the Vienna State Opera (you can pick up tickets in advance with viennaoperatickets.com) and even visiting the home of Wolfgang Mozart himself. On the other hand, you could always book your trip during one of the many performing arts festivals here held throughout the year.

4. Cologne, Germany

Cologne offers a healthy balance of activities for groups with a mix of personalities. During the day, there are tonnes of museums and art galleries to peruse, Cologne Cathedral to visit and Romanesque churches to photograph. During the evening though, it becomes lively and vibrant as the 3,300 restaurants, bars and clubs open for business. The Cologne Botanical Gardens offer a tranquil space to escape city noise, whilst fashionistas will be pleased to hear that Cologne is tipped by locals to be one of Germany’s greatest shopping destinations.

5. Warsaw, Poland

Warsaw is an up and coming city that’s had a lot of praise sent its way in recent years. Don’t let the adorable red-tiled roofs fool you – this city is one of the most modern and dynamic in Europe, and today offers a huge number of art and culture festivals, as well as contemporary museums. From the annual Orange Warsaw Music Festival, to their International Film Festival, this is one city to watch.

Are you headed on a European adventure this year? Tell us where in the comments section…