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As we welcome in the cooler weather and longer nights of autumn many people will be thinking about Netflix and frugal nights at home. We totally understand the need to save after a frivolous summer, but autumn in Europe shouldn’t be missed and thanks to post-summer flight deals, you can actually afford to go exploring. That’s why we’ve gathered 10 ideas for the perfect weekend escape.

The best part? You don’t need to worry about breaking the bank. We’ve consulted trip4real’s local experts so you can go adventuring on the cheap. So pack your weekend bag, and get inspired to discover Europe on a shoestring. 

Gloomy, rainy Sunday evening in Paris no such thing! Jim is the most enlightening local on the block, and luckily for trip4real travellers, he hosts a dinner party every Sunday evening, for the costly sum of €1, with the option to donate more. While away hours with other fellow travellers listening to his amazing stories of meeting the likes of Yoko Ono, John Lennon and Francis Bacon.

For an escape to Rome, hang out with Gianluca, who’ll take you away from the usual tourist traps of the city, and immerse you in the alternative heart of Rome, where music, art, theatre, film and food take centre stage. For €13 he’ll show you unknown marketplaces, and sites from iconic films, but best of all, this area of the city won’t hurt your bank account.

Want to join in on a local tradition? Catalonians love to go out to the country hills in search for edible mushrooms, and for €45, Maria will take you into the peaceful Berguedà forest outside the city on a hunt for the best of Catalonia’s mushrooms. She'll show you which ones to steer clear from, which ones to make a beeline for, and then how to turn them into something delicious. Great value for your own personal guide. 

If you’re just looking for some local tips have a glass of wine with the folks at trip4real in Barcelona. They’ll take you out to a local pub and answer all the questions you have, so you can find out where to go for the best tapas in the city, the cheapest gin and tonic and where to find live music. It’s free and you’ll leave with tons of insider knowledge.

Lisbon is on everyone’s getaway list, and for good reason. From food to shopping this city seems to have it all. We suggest meeting up with Miguel for a day of vintage shopping. He knows the best stalls in the best flea market in Lisbon, where antique chic is accessible to everyone at great prices, and for €15 he’ll tell all. After an intense morning rummaging through the interesting odds and ends, he’ll show you his favourite view of the city, probably with a well-deserved beer.

Everyone knows about Amsterdam’s ‘coffee shop’ scene, but not many people know how to truly experience coffee culture like a local. This is where Shona comes in. She’ll give you a truly interesting insight into the world of the Dutch coffee shop, including some necessary do’s and don’ts so as not to embarrass oneself, tips on where to find the best ‘coffee’, and the chance to sample her favourite at the end all for 12.

Forget the usual roast beef, Britain’s national dish is really curry, and in London, this means east. After a long day walking down through the historic city, spend a 15 evening with local Ellie and her friends, who’ll be hiding from the rain in an arthouse cinema then showing you their favourite tikka masala.


Scotland and whisky, the pair go hand in hand. With friendly local Felipe and €22, trip4real travellers can also take whisky by the hand at his tasting evening. Felipe pairs the whiskies with breads from artisan bakers across the city, letting guests blind taste while he give shares some unusual little titbits.

Madrid’s vast yet fascinating art world can be overwhelming even for the locals. But not this local. Renata holds all the secrets to the famous Reina Sofia, containing some of Spain’s greatest modern artworks. Don’t become swamped, for €15 understand the true story behind Picasso’s Guernica, Dali’s melting clocks, and Miro’s Catalan identity.

A trip to Dublin is not complete without seeing the beautiful surrounding countryside. With autumn in full flow, and the rust coloured rainbows covering the trees, local guide Terry will create a day to remember with his tour of the glacial valley of Glendalough. Wrap up warm, and follow Terry on a magical mystery tour of picturesque villages, sculpted gardens and impressive valleys. For an eight hour trip, it’s only €25! 


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10 incredible autumn activities you can afford
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