Travel time: If you want to play hooky in Europe, you can’t get much closer. Direct flights from New York, Philadelphia, Boston, and other major East Coast cities run at about 6.5 hours and as cheap as the $300s.
Why you'll love it: Dublin’s hardly a secret, but it’s one you can easily browse past if you’re planning a Euro trip. Look, it’s cheap, dense, walkable, culturally rich, and full of locals who will drink you under the table, day or night -- don’t overthink this. For a blowout three-day weekend, it’s ideal. On these cobbled streets, you’ll meet street performers performing magic and making dog sculptures out of sand. Skip the tourist-choked joints around Temple Bar and instead hit up the art scene at the Irish Film Institute or The Temple Bar Gallery and Studios. Pop by the Leprechaun Museum and sit in a giant chair 10 times your size, best after pints and drams at the Guinness Factory and the Jameson Distillery. If you prefer to eat your alcohol, try some Guinness stew or stop in at Murphy's for a rotating menu of ice cream flavors that includes an Irish coffee flavor.
Then keep the party going. Hit the Brazen Head for live music or hit a pub on Harcourt street for a sloppy, make-out-with-a-local kind of evening. Your new friend (what’s his name, again?) might lead you into a bleary made-up game like "good bottle, bad bottle" (hint: It always ended in bottles breaking). After two days soaking up culture, history, and ethanol, head out for a tour of the stunning countryside and the cliffs in Howth, to clear your head and lungs before heading back home to real life. -- Hannah Friedman