Check out our Purple Travel guide to some of the best parties cities Europe has to offer in 2014. Don’t agree? Let us know in the comments below.
Berlin, Germany. It can be hard to choose from the best party cities Europe 2014, but Berlin is an easy one. A sprawling city where weekends usually start on Thursday evenings and last well into Monday morning, there’s a great selection of cheap hotels and cool bars. House music is easily the most popular and clubs like WaterGate on Falckensteinerstrase 49, Cookies on Friedrichstrase 158 and Weekend on Alexanderstrasse 5 are almost clubbing institutions in Berlin.
Ios Island in Greece. Not technically a city, but Ios easily tops the list of the best places to party in Europe. A longtime backpackers favourite, trust me, it’s worth the ferry trek for hot summer all night parties. Start out in the clean lines of Far Out Beach Bar, before knocking back €1 shots in Orange Bar (the Malteser ones are epic!) Slammers Bar Ios, lives up to its name – you put on a helmet and get whacked in the head with a hammer after a shot, and Sweet Irish Dream only kicks off at 3am. Phew!
This one’s for all the guys and girls who want something a little bit more off-the-beaten track than your average beach. Hen parties and stag parties these days tend to be over the top but some grooms and brides just want to have a relaxing getaway to keep calm and carry on ahead of their big day. If you think sunbathing in California or Hawaii is too obvious or if you, can’t stand tourists, why not take the road less travelled? There are plenty of secret and unexpected beaches around the world, hidden gems reserved strictly for locals or connoisseurs.
Blijburg aan Zee, the beach in Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Amsterdam is the proud owner of 165 canals, but, did you know it also has an achingly hip beach set on an artificial island in the middle of the city lake? Blijburg aan Zee is the place to be during the summer, with DJs playing day and night, regular art events and lots of beach activities like campfires and sandcastle building competitions making it the real deal. Perfect for a lively hen or stag do that’s pretty close to home.
This funky destination is located in Queens, New York and it’s the only official surfing destination in the Big Apple. It’s a great find if you’re looking for that bohemian beach destination in New York, making it a great addition to the city’s assets. It’s the newest hipster destination, but don’t let that put you off, it has great food and plenty of atmosphere. This is for the cosmopolitan hens who want the best of city break with a bit of beach thrown in.
Spain is a pretty obvious choice for travellers. But, there’s a reason tourists queue to visit Barcelona, Madrid and the Balearic Islands. If you’re in love with the Spanish way of life, but feel tired just thinking of tourists crowding your every move, try Cadaqués. This Catalonian town was an artist resort and inspired brilliant minds, especially surrealist painter Salvador Dali. You can even visit his house or learn more about him at a really good museum dedicated to his genius in Port Lligat, a neighbouring town. Perfect for a stag or hen with an artistic streak.
Tourists in Southern Asia have been known to ignore this beautiful island and choose more popular destinations like Phuket or Koh Samui. Phu Quoc is the largest island in the Gulf of Thailand and it boasts pristine beaches, fascinating reefs and hard–to-forget authentic Vietnamese cuisine. Get it while it’s still fresh and untouched by popular tour guide books. This is a long-haul stag or hen destination that you’ll never forget.
Capo Sant’Andrea, the island within an island in Elba
The Mediterranean island is where Napoleon famously was famously exiled. Fishing villages, ancient castles and green hills are just a few sightseeing gems for you and your friends in Capo Sant’Andrea. If you’re looking for serious beaches and serious partying, then this little island has exactly what you need.
No matter if you’re looking for a city escape or a secret beach on a dream island for your hen or stag party, there are more choices than you’d think. New York, Amsterdam Copenhagen, and Barcelona are just a few cities where local beaches are a perfect destination for an all-boys/all-girls vacation, while splendid islands and fishing towns in Vietnam, Spain, Estonia or Tasmania will give you the perfect holiday without transporting you to Touristville.
Amber Kingsley is a travel writer and has contributed to several travel sites and blogs. She loves spending time at the beach with her puppy Charlie and is always looking for the hidden gems of a city on her travels. She would loves finding out about more secret spots through her readers!
Buckle up! The experts at Purple Travel have put together this list of the best budget stag and hen do ideas. Call our dedicated stag and hen do team on 0207 993 9228 for more.
For the stag
1. Prague Home to a weird, wacky stag party with the best in cheap beers, beer bikes and beer baths. The Czech capital is one of the hottest stag destinations, it’s not only a beautiful city, but is a good laugh and great value too.
2. Benidorm The classic Stag do, Benidorm holds its own with lap dance clubs, some of the best superclubs you’ll visit in your life, and days of karting or boozing on the beach all at decent prices.
3. Amsterdam It’s hard to pick a more classic stag do choice than the Dutch city of Amsterdam for a stag party to remember (or forget.) The Red Light District is filled with beautiful women, the bars are great and there’s plenty of culture if that’s your bag too.
4. Barcelona A bit of footie at the Nou Camp, a few cervezas on the Ramblas por favor and the hottest Spanish senoritas, Barcelona ticks all the boxes for a great cheap stag party.
5. Budapest Cheap beer, all night parties, strippers or tank driving, Buda and Pest, the city of two halves has everything you could possibly want on a good value stag do.
Get the best cheap stag do from the expert team today at Purple Travel.
For the hen
1. Magaluf Oh come on! Magaluf or Shagaluf is the ultimate last hurrah to single life. 24 hour partying, knocking back cocktails, great cheap hotels, buckets of sunshine and lots of like minded people. A cheap hen party in Magaluf is our top choice for summer 2013.
2. Albufeira, a sunshine favourite, Albufeira, is a quick transfer from Faro airport and has a strip over a mile long of the most wicked clubs and bars with cheap drinks, dancing music and hot guys. In the daytime you could head for the famous beachfront to recover and get ready for more.
3. Ibiza C’mon, is there a more ultimate party destination than Ibiza? All night dancing in some of the best clubs in the world, we’re talking Pacha, Space or Amnesia. For the indie hen there’s a nice alternative in Ibiza Rocks. The beaches are the ultimate balm for the morning after the night before and there are great value hotels or apartments all over.
4. Amsterdam Away from the Red Light bits that keep all stag parties interested, Amsterdam is actually a great city. It’s only a short flight away, you can grab a bike to discover the city by day, head for a cafe in the early evening and kick off your night out with a pole dancing lesson, or cocktail making class.
5. Barcelona who wants a rainy spa weekend in the Lake district, when you could go all out in the bars, clubs and beaches of Catalonia’s favourite city. Stock up on tapas, soak up sangria by the jug and get up close and personal with all those sexy Spanish men.
Get the best cheap hen do from the expert team today at Purple Travel.
If you’re looking to let it all hang out, feel the passion and generally get up to as much mischief as possible, check out our sexiest holidays. As always, whatever we’ve missed leave it in the comments.
Hedonism Resorts,Jamaica this place really lives up to its name. Au naturel accommodation (including mirrored ceilings), singles opting to share rooms, and nightly parties, this is where grownups go to lose every inhibition.
Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas Sin City was bound to appear on this list. The Moorea Beach Club is an over-21s ‘European Bathing Experience’ offering poolside massages, a waterside casino, and some of the best and most attentive staff in the city. Just remember, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.
Thermal Baths, Budapest Hungarians are known for a bit of a lack of inhibitions so why not join the party and strip off like the locals in one of the gorgeous thermal baths. Filled with saunas, whirlpools, plunge pools and men and women in various states of undress. Getting all hot and naked is as good a way as any to get a party started.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands Eh, there’s the Red Light District, that famous relaxed atmosphere and reputation for free-spiritedness all combining to make Amsterdam an excellent getaway particularly if you’ve only a few days to do it. Head for a burlesque club, or the famous sex museum to really spice things up.
Mardi Gras, New Orleans The infamous carnival is easily one of the biggest street parties in the world, there’s nothing quite like the seductive rhythm of Mardi Gras to spice up your holidays. There’s the odd flash of flesh in exchange for beads, but be warned, it’s not exactly legal, hundreds are arrested each year for public nudity.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil It’s got everything you need for a sexy holiday. It’s exotic, has the ultimate party reputation, the hottest guys and girls vying for space on the unbelievable beaches and a thumping club scene. Head for the Copacabana to soak up the atmosphere.
Paphos, Cyprus has good credentials when it comes to loving. It was the home of an actual love goddess in the form of Aprhodite, who tempted the mighty Adonis with lust. It may not have all worked out, but you can still recreate that summer romance on the perfect party island.
Temptation Resorts, Mexico A themed hotel designed with an adults-only atmosphere, Temptations has its focus on relaxation, with a casual attitude to all aspects of your holiday. Go topless, enjoy a themed night, party for 24 hours, or simply chill out in this all inclusive resort.
No money? No problems! The dedicated stag and hen party team at Purple Travel is waiting to organise the most amazing send off for you and your mates. We’re talking cheap and cheerful not diamonds and champagne. So if you’re about to excuse yourself from single life, or you know someone who is, check out our cheap summer stag and hen dos.
The best cheap summer stag dos
Ibiza (Average summer temps 22-27)
Sun, sea and birds. Could there be a more perfect sunshine stag holiday destination than the beaches of Ibiza? Not only is the weather great, but a cheap stag holiday in San Antonio means you probably won’t be sober for more than a minute. Hop on a booze cruise; get VIP treatment in some of the top clubs on the island, beat the house with a high rollers party, or head for the strip clubs to get an eyeful of those hot Spanish girls.
Albufeira (Average summer temps 18-25)
Albufeira is a really affordable stag holiday option. There are plenty of flights and loads of accommodation options, so all you need to do is think about exactly how you want to spend the best stag ever. We suggest starting off with a day of speed boating or hop on a pirate cruise, this’ll be good fun for you and the lads before the big night out. Hit the legendary bar street, where you’re likely to get free shots before finishing the night in a top strip club. It’s hard to argue with that.
Amsterdam (Average summer temps 18-20)
2013 is a big year for Amsterdam with all sorts of extra stuff happening throughout the city. By that we mean museums, the zoo and loads of concerts. Of course, for a stag, it’s a good cover for all the horse play you’re planning in the background. Our stag parties in Amsterdam are dedicated to all things debauchery. From seeing the city by beer bicycle, to Red Light Tours, it’s absolutely the best of both worlds.
Speak with Jack from Purple Travel to find out the best stag do to suit you and your budget. Call 0125 241 8614 today!
The best cheap summer hen dos
San Antonio (Average summer temps 22-27)
Ibiza’s party capital San Antonio is one of our top choices for you and your girls to get pampered before getting stuck into as many cocktails as you can. On top of that, blazing sunshine is ready to give you a golden glow ahead of your big day, and nothing soothes a hangover like a long lie down on the sand and a dip in the sea. Go for broke and treat yourself and your hens to a speedboat party, or you could always go for the old fashioned banana boat option. Then it’s off for the ultimate club crawl, just remember: what happens in San Antonio stays in San Antonio.
Magaluf (Average summer temps 21-25)
Come on, everyone knows its other name: Shagaluf! Enjoy your last few nights of freedom with the hottest party ever. There are so many nightlife options you could practically call it the pub and club capital of Spain. Get some lap dancing lessons or spend your days downing cocktails at the beach. By night the place is buzzing. Grab yourself a guided bar crawl and VIP entry to the best clubs in town.
Barcelona (Average summer temps 23-28)
Combine city break with city beach and you have all the elements for a brilliant cheap hen do just a few hours from the UK. By day you can soak up the sunshine on Barcelona beach, or if some of your girls want to explore there are amazing landmarks such as the Sagrada Familia or Tibidabo. Then by night you can all regroup go for dinner, have a vajazzle party (yes, it’s a thing) and head for a guided pub crawl of the best bars in town.
Speak with Vicky from PurpleTravel.co.uk to find out the best hen do to suit you and your budget. Call 0125 241 8614 today!
Getting there doesn’t have to be difficult with excellent prices for flights and accommodation from Purple Travel, while our guides to free stuff to do, means there are city breaks for everyone that won’t break the bank. Here are some of our picks for great city breaks this year.
Amsterdam is a great year to visit the Dutch city famous for its canals and cafes. The city’s stretches of canal make the ideal accompaniment to an afternoon stroll, a bit of window shopping, or a stop in one of the ‘brown cafes’ named for the cigarette stained walls, hmm! The centre of the city at Dam Square is a people watching paradise; while the Red Light District, well it is worth a look, just don’t take any pictures while you’re there or you might end up spending more than you bargained for.
If you time it right, Paris is far more cheap ‘n’ cheerful than you first might have imagined! The first Sunday of the month, sees the Louvre, the Musee d’Orsay and Centre Pompidou open their doors for free. Street art is one of the most popular pastimes, with painters indulging their talents on the well worn boulevards. Finish up with a stroll through Parc des Buttes, Chaumont. It has some of the best and free (of course) views of the city. If you really run out of things to see, you could always visit the infamous Pere Lachaise cemetery where Edith Piaf and Jim Morrison are buried.
New York, well, we’ve covered the Big Apple in detail before, but our favourites are the High Line Park built up on a former freight rail line, free kayaking on the Hudson, lunchtime concerts at Trinity Church on Wall Street and free tours by the Big Apple Greeters.
The ultimate in cheap city and sunshine combos has to be Malaga. On the Costa del Sol, it’s long been a firm favourite with travellers from across the UK. The legendary sun drenched Spanish Coast is filled with great value hotels to suit every budget. You can have free fun in the Smurf village of nearby Juzcar, hit the beach of Benalmadena or the city’s own beach of Malagueta. Of course the nightlife is brilliant throughout the region, with plenty of drinks promos and free entry to clubs in Torremolinos or Fuengirola and it’s the top choice for a cheap stag or hen do.
You won’t want to say arrivederciRoma after a weekend in the gorgeous Italian City. It might not strike you as the cheapest city on earth, but there’s lots to see and do if you get a little research in first. Head for the Pantheon, the ancient Roman temple that once honoured the gods, it is free to visit. An ice cream at the Spanish Steps or an espresso by the Trevi Fountain are delicious ways to enjoy the city and many of the city’s museums are free on the first Sunday of the month, now that’s a great idea for city breaks that won’t break the bank.
So with all that action going on, for free, what are you waiting for? Talk to the experts at Purple Travel to book your next cheap city break.
The reopening of the Rijksmuseum. After ten years of extensive renovations and improvements, Amsterdam’s flagship museum is set to open its doors again on April 13th.
Van Gogh to Amsterdam. Arguably the city’s most praised artist, the Van Gogh Museum will reopen just days after the Rijksmuseum on May 2nd. It will celebrate 40 years with many major works by the artist on display.
Canals can age very well. In Holland anyway, where Amsterdam will celebrate the 400th anniversary of the architecture and importance of the city’s (UNESCO World Heritage Listed) canals with parties and events.
Music fans rejoice. Amsterdam is going all out to celebrate its musical heritage in 2013, with the famous Concertgebouw Concert Hall enjoying its 125th anniversary. There will be live performances, as well as special events by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
Artis Royal Zoo. One of the most fun places in Amsterdam, the zoo is also a playground and park. It will mark over 175 years with a riot of colour, as thousands of new plants are set to bloom. A great choice if you’re bringing the kids with you.
Royal watching. Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands announced earlier this year that she would abdicate in favour of her son, Crown-Prince Willem-Alexander. You can be sure that the city will throw some kind of celebration for the event on April 30th.
The Felix Meritis. An historic house, where the wealthy citizens of the city would meet to talk about politics, the arts and science, it is still an iconic place to visit and reopens this year on April 18th to celebrate its 225th anniversary.
Pride in Amsterdam. Another celebration on the canals, Amsterdam will celebrate its Pride Festival with street parties, club parties and the famous Canal Parade. Most events take place around August 2-4th.
Frans Hals Museum. A selection of key masterpieces by the Dutch artist will be presented to mark the museum’s centenary year. Displayed side by side with amazing works by the likes of Rubens and Rembrandts, this is sure to be a feast for the eyes.
Summer in Amsterdam. It’s not just for city breaks, Amsterdam breaks out in blissful sunshine every summer, with many locals heading outside to their favourite roof terrace for a drink, to cinema under the stars, enjoy a visit to a canal side Amsterdam cafe, or head for the urban beaches.
Tell us your reasons to visit Amsterdam in 2013, and we’ll add them here.
For more details on city or summer breaks to the Netherlands, call Purple Travel on 0207 993 9228.
Sleep is for the weak, so head to some of the most amazing nightclubs in the world to party like there’s no tomorrow.
Pacha – IbizaConsistently rated in the top nightclubs in the world, you’re in safe hands in Pacha. With five different rooms there’s something for everyone. And although it might not be the biggest club on the island, with the likes of Swedish House Mafia and David Guetta taking over in past years, we can expect good things for 2013.
Privilege – Ibiza A club so hot it has its own swimming pool; it’s a privilege to get in here. Infamous since the 80s, and partying all night long ever since, you can expect one hell of a party.
XS at the Encore – Las Vegas – Sin City is where anything can happen, including tigers in your hotel room, as we saw in The Hangover. XS really lives up to its name, the best place on earth to waste your entire life savings, it’s got a gold crusted interior, and gets the big names in like Diplo and Calvin Harris. Just remember: what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.
LIV at Fountainbleau – Miami A heady mix of luxury and high energy, this place is usually packed with celebs and is rumoured to be one of the biggest money earning clubs in the world. Filled with sexy dancers, private skyboxes and lavish décor, for the regular Joe this is a once in a lifetime nightspot.
BCM – Magaluf One of the biggest clubs in Europe, BCMs has been packing them in for years. These guys know how to party, and party hard. Packed with themed parties, bangin’ beats and top DJs it’s the place to see and be seen in Magaluf. Perfect for stag and hen parties with a bang.
Subsix – Maldives Not one of the big names on this list, but how could we forget the world’s first underwater nightclub. Opened by Tinie Tempah, this is set to be *the* all night party hotspot in 2013.
La Boom – Cancun All night tequila,amazing lights and laser shows and women hanging around in half nothing. You could try finding a better club in Cancun, but you probably won’t.
Berghain – Berlin A bit of a mission impossible to get in the door (it’s totally random) but once inside it’s the hedonistic capital of nightlife in the city. And for a place that’s renowned for its shenanigans that saying something. The massive converted power station is filled with an edgy crowd who will stay there for hours on end.
Zouk – Singapore Its name actually comes from the French Creole word for party, and do they know it. Three warehouses turned superclubs are aiming to regenerate the Asian dance scene and have been picking up tonnes of plaudits along the way. Filled to the brim every weekend, it draws big names like Bjork, John Digweed and the Chemical Brothers pitching in sets, and its fierce reputation is set to get even better in 2013.
Row 14 – Barcelona Don’t go to Barcelona for a weekend with the expectation that you’ll get any sleep. Step away from the Ramblas and into the winding streets filled with pubs and clubs. The city never stops but really gets going about 1am, and it’s not unusual to fall in your hotel bed at all hours. Head for a wakeup call at Row 14, a sexy new electronic club, with convertible roof and massive sound.
After extensive research (!) we’ve compiled our list of the best boozy holidays. Whether it’s a stag or hen do, a beer discovering holiday or you simply like to throw back a few pints, choose these holiday destinations for a spirited pick me up.
Cancun, Mexico This purpose built resort has been serving the best in tequila since the 70s. It’s a kind of anything goes place, so be prepared to let your hair down.
Amsterdam, Holland The home of Heineken is a firm favourite for stag dos. Not only will you get up to all sorts of boozy shenanigans, but it’s well known that Amsterdam’s explosive nightlife caters for all kinds of fun.
Usually in our series of weird and wonderful hotels from around the world, A Night Less Ordinary, we focus on the good ones. Or at the very least, the quirky ones. This week, we take a look at the hotel that is proud of its reputation as the worst hotel in the world!
Cheap, dirty, cold and poorly lit. Not the words you’d usually associate with somewhere you actually want to stay, but it seems to be working for the self-named ‘worst hotel in the world.’ Amsterdam’sHans Brinker Budget Hotel has been (proudly) disappointing people for years.
It actually lists itself 15th on its own places to stay in Amsterdam, well behind a friend’s couch, the back of a burned out car or an abandoned mine shaft. It does admit it offers slightly more comfort though than an unmarked grave (!!)
On its website, it already boasts that it’s been “proudly disappointing travellers,” offering slightly watered down beers, an elevator that almost never breaks down, a rusty bed and awkwardly shaped dormitories. But, with rates starting at just 22.50 it’s easy to see why people do still go through with it. Plus, if expectations are low it means that they’re usually exceeded!
So, we want to know what you think, would you be willing to spend a night in the world’s worst hotel, or does a night in jail sound more appetising? We’d love to know what you think in the comments below.
Just watch out for their terms and conditions… “Those wishing to stay at the Hans Brinker Budget Hotel, Amsterdam, do so at their own risk and will not hold the hotel liable for food poisoning, mental breakdowns, terminal illness, lost limbs, radiation poisoning, certain diseases associated with the 18th century, plague, etcetera.”