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Barcelona

January is really a month for the winter blues. Christmas is a hazy memory, you can't quite shake that cold that's been bothering you, and summer seems like an eternity away.

Why not escape for a weekend to see some of Europe's most incredible sights, and stay in the best Airbnb's you can find. Treat yo'self, gowan.

Luckily for you, we've curated a list of some of the continent's best apartment finds.

We've already booked our flights straight out of Dublin airport, ASAP….

leaving steve martin GIF

1. Zagreb, Croatia

This new stylish apartment is in the perfect location in the centre of the beautiful Zagreb, on Križanićeva street.

For a quiet and safe space which is still central, this is one of the best areas to stay in. Close to the main city square, central bus and train station, everything is easily within walking distance.

A modern, contemporary apartment with a monochromatic décor theme, yet still so comfortable, this apartment is perfect. It can host three guests, and has two beds and a bath. 

New stylish central apartment
Price: €37 per night

2. Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is an incredible city to visit, the Old Town is stunning and has a huge amount of history, and most of the town is within walking distance.

It also is home to some of the best pub crawls in the world, just sayin'. This gorgeous boutique apartment has us DROOLING.

The spacious design, the window panels allowing light to stream in, we just need to stay here ASAP.

The boutique apartment is located in the Bohemian Zizkov district, packed with unreal cafés, bars, restaurants and bars with some amazing views of Prague.

3. Paris, France

We have found a sunny, cosy studio apartment LITERALLY just down the road from the Eiffel Tower. What more would you need?

The charming apartment is ideal for an escape to the Parisian life; it's both residential and family-oriented.

There are windows throughout the apartment to let in the French sun, and the location is absolutely perfect; the seventh district of Les Invalides

Just picture yourself having a coffee and croissant downstairs, looking out the window at the Parisian aesthetic. We can.

4. Berlin, Germany

A 'superhost' owns this GORGEOUS Berlin apartment, which can house four guests and his also an absolute bargain of an offer for what you're getting.

The apartment is a short walking distance away from some of Berlin's top spots, with restaurants, shops and bars surrounding the area.

The subway station is only a seven minute walk away, and the location is both safe and central. You'll be prancing around Alexanderplatz in no time…

Design apartment
Price: €34 per night

5. Barcelona, Spain

This spacious loft is on Airbnb Plus, and for a good reason.

The stunning studio apartment has an actual JETTED TUB. Be still my beating travel heart. The location is extremely central; with the city's main sights within walking distance.

The New York-style space has exposed brick walls, high ceilings of rustic Catalan wood and bold modern art.

Catch some rays on the balcony and make use of the space's incredible amenities.

Spacious loft
€70 per night

6. Rome, Italy

This 'superhost' certified apartment in the centre of one of Europe's most renowned cities is GOALS.

The apartment can house up to four guests, and is located on the first floor of a beautiful palatial residence just minutes from the Piazza Della Repubblica.

The studio home is freshly renovated, filled with light and more luxurious than our future. We LOVE.

7. Edinburgh, United Kingdom

This stunning Georgian apartment in Edinburgh's New Town is one of the best Airbnb's on the market.

The loft is a ground floor flat in the famous area, with absolutely every part of the city within walking distance. The apartment is spacious, has fantastic amenities such as a bath, and even an indoor fireplace for those cold January months.

The beautiful home as Wi-Fi, free parking down the road and houses two guests easily, with comfort being the essential promise. 

New Town apartment 
€54 per night

8. Vienna, Austria

This sunny apartment is extremely sought after, for it's dedication to space and light.

It can house four guests, and they can each experience the unique, warm decor of the apartment while being close to the most famous parts of Vienna.

The metro station at Ober-St. Veit is only a seven minute walk away, with the home featuring a spacious living room with a kitchen, one bedroom and a bathroom.

The terrace can be used in summer to soak in that European sun that we Irish can never seem to get.

Sunny apartment in Vienna
Price: €69 per night

9. Krakow, Poland

Poland is a great country to escape to, especially because of how affordable it is.

This chic loft apartment in central Krakow is only €18 PER NIGHT, we cannot believe how great it is.

Beautiful, modern studio for one or two people has air conditioning for the hot summer months, and is located on Bonerowska Street in Krakow city centre. 

The space is less than five minutes walking distance away from Krakow's main historical sights including main square, Wawel Castle, the Jewish Quarter and more.

Loft apartment
Price: €18 per night

10. Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The hosts don't call it the 'stairway to heaven' for no reason. Amsterdam is one of Europe's most interesting cities, with a huge amount to do and some immensely picturesque locations to visit.

Little loft apartments near the canals and boats are such a dream come true, and this luxury apartment with warm, modern décor is perfect for a weekend away with someone special.

The private trendy studio is built in the attic of an authentic 1880 Amsterdam house, and is located in the cool neighbourhood near the food hall and outdoor markets. I wouldn't book this if stairs aren't suitable for you, however, it's a steep climb up.

Stairway to Heaven
Price: €80

You all deserve a holiday, and January is the perfect time to escape the winter blues and catch the travel bug.

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Following last week's devastating terror attack in Barcelona, members of the Muslim community have taken to the streets of the Spanish city to protest the acts of terror which were carried out in the name of their religion.

Less than a week after a group, which is believed to consist of 12 radicalised individuals, plotted to kill and maim innocent bystanders in both central Barcelona and the town of Cambrils, hundreds of Muslims have taken to the streets to protest the abhorrent acts.

Clutching placards which read 'not in my name' in a number of languages, the city's Muslim community proved they are desperate to distance themselves from the individuals who killed at least 14 people in last week's atrocities.

Creating the shape of a heart with their hands, hundreds of people, young and old, marched from the scene of the attack to the Plaza de Catalunya over the weekend.

Currently, the Muslim community in Spain is on the receiving end of racist grafitti, with mosques in Barcelona, Seville and Granada having been targeted by vandals in the wake of last week's terrorist attacks.

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As Barcelona mourns for the lives of those lost in the horrific terrorist attacks earlier this week, Spanish police have confirmed that the death toll could have been much higher.

13 people died in the attack on Las Ramblas, and up to 100 are injured after the man deliberately drove onto a pedestrian path.

However, the terrorists who were planning the attacks had their ultimate plan foiled, after the house they were storing explosives in blew up accidentally. 

It was originally believed that the house was a street drug lab, but it is now reported that a house in the Alcanar region was used to store home made explosives. 

After the building was toppled on Wednesday night and the explosives lost, it is reported that those orchestrating the attacks turned to using the vehicles as a weapons instead. 

'The explosion in Alcanar stopped larger attacks from happening because they no longer had some of the material they needed,' Catalan police chief Josep Lluis Trapero told Bloomberg.

 Police are still looking for the driver of the van and a nationwide man hunt is under way 

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As the world comes to terms with the latest in a string of horrendous terrorist attacks on European soil, James Corden has acknowledged the feeling which many struggle with at a time when terrorist attacks are becoming frighteningly more commonplace.

James began the most recent episode of The Late Late Show with a heartfelt acknowledgement of the terrifying scenes which played out in Barcelona yesterday afternoon.

"When we hear about London or Paris or Stockholm and now Barcelona, you can almost start to become numb to it, like this is becoming something normal and we don’t need to talk about it here on our show," he said.

"But we think we mustn’t allow it to become something that’s normal. We must talk about it so we remember how sad, horrific, and tragic these moments are," James insisted.

"To the people of Barcelona, I just want to add to the rest of the world's outpouring of love and give our thoughts. We are thinking about the victims and their families right now on what must be an unimaginable day of horror for them," he continued.

James explained that his role is to bring light and levity to a "world where it is becoming often too hard to find."

Take a look at this.

 

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Police have reportedly arrested a man after a van ploughed into a crowd of people on one of Barcelona's busiest streets earlier today.

At least 13 people have died and 32 are injured after the man deliberately drove onto a pedestrian path in Las Ramblas.

According to reports, the man in question had been in prison in the Catalan city of Figueres until 2012.

The area has since been cordoned off and several ambulances and police vehicles are currently at the scene.

It is understood that train and metro services has been suspended and people have been urged to stay indoors.

Police have said they believe the incident was terror related.

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According to emerging reports, dozens of commuters were injured this morning when a commuter train crashed into railway buffers at a station in northeastern Barcelona.

It is understood that 48 people were treated at the scene by emergency services, while 18 were transferred to hospitals around the city.

Reports confirm that five people, including the driver, are currently in a serious condition in hospital.

The accident occurred at the Francia station on the northern side of the Spanish city at approximately 07.15 local time.

It is understood that the train was travelling from the southern coastal town of Sant Vicenc de Calder.

Authorities have yet to confirm the cause of the crash.

Image: Quique García/EPA

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A Justin Bieber fan was left bleeding in Barcelona last night after the singer punched him in the face while travelling in a moving car.

Video footage shot outside the Spanish city’s Palau Sant Jordi stadium shows a male fan reaching through the chauffeur-driven vehicle’s open window to touch the popstar’s upper body as he greeted those waiting around the venue.

The 22-year-old star’s hand can then be seen jutting out the window before connecting with the youth’s face.

As the car rolls out of sight, the Spaniard turns toward the camera to reveal his bleeding lip. 

He touches the wound a number of times with his thumb while telling other frantic fans what happened, using a punching gesture as part of the re-enactment.

According to The Mirror, the teenage fan is considering suing the Sorry hitmaker but has yet to report the incident to Spanish authorities.

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We've all been there, spending the majority of our pay cheques on rent and and then bitching about it until we get our next pay cheque. 

Usually we threaten to leave our jobs, leave our apartments and then leave the country.

Well this guy did just that, besides leaving his job, and commutes from around 1,500 km away every day. 

Sam Cookney was so sick of the extremely high rent prices in London that he decided to move to Spain and travel to work in England each day. 

Two years ago, Sam tweeted saying: "Done the sums. Would actually be cheaper for me to rent 2 bed flat in Barcelona+commute to London, than get 1 bed here. Genuinely. Blog it?"

He then wrote a blog post two years later confirming that this was in fact what he was going to do, explaining his reasons behind the move and how much money he was going to save each month by moving country. 

In his blog post he wrote:

"I think many people thought I was joking when I boldly declared it would be cheaper for me to rent a two bed flat in Barcelona and commute to London every day than get a one bed flat here. Turns out I was – I could in fact get a three bed flat."

The 32-year-old now travels four days a week to London from Barcelona and he actually saves money on rent! Even though he moved from sharing an apartment in London to his own Three-bedroom apartment in Spain.

In his blog post, Same explains how he paid €1,979 a month to live in London which includes rent, travel and council tax. He now pays €680 a month for rent in Barcelona and €912 on travel which brings him to a grand total of €1,592. 

And turns out he's saving more than just pocket change, he has a saving €387 to spend as he pleases on his new life in Barcelona. We have to say, we are a bit jealous. 

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She was in the area – but Niall Horan went to a lot more effort to ensure he could spend another evening with rumoured love-interest Ariana Grande.

The singers were both in attendance at the swish Botafumeiro restaurant in Barcelona to celebrate the 26th birthday of their mutual friend, videographer and director Alfredo Flores.

​And Niall, bless him, flew more than 1,000km from Brussels, where he was performing as part of One Direction's One The Road Again tour, to be there.

He also then had to hop on another flight today, this time covering 1,750km to Copenhagen, where the band plays this evening.

Meanwhile, 21-year-old Ariana is due to perform at Barcelona's Palau Sant Jordi stadium tonight.

Yesterday evening, she took to Twitter to congratulation her friend.

Ms Grande wore a white halter-neck top with criss-cross detail for the birthday celebrations, teaming it with a black skirt. Mr Horan kept it simple in a black t-shirt and jeans, finishing off his look with suede boots.

Niall, 21, was out again with Alfredo on Sunday evening, with the Mullingar-man taking to Instagram to post an image of the continued revelry. Then this afternoon, the posse was seen leaving another bar in the Catalonian capital.

 

Only way to celebrate @alfredoflores is the king !

A photo posted by Niall horan (@niallhoran) on

Despite spending increasing amounts of time in each other's company, Ariana and Niall have insisted that they are "just friends".

Indeed, the former has reacted angrily to insinuations that her male friends may be something more.

"I am tired of living in a world where women are mostly referred to as a man’s past, present or future PROPERTY/POSSESSION," she said in an on-line mouth-off earlier this month. "I do not. Belong. To anyone. But myself."

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