A CITY in the Czech Republic that very few Brits will know has been named the European Capital of Christmas for 2024.

Earlier this month, Brno in the Czech Republic was crowned the European Capital of Christmas for 2024.

At the beginning of December, members of the International Jury of the European Capital of Christmas unanimously awarded its festive title to Brno.

The little-known European city took the top spot thanks to its "impressive quality of festive activities and their relevance to European values".

Every winter, the city is transformed into a festive wonderland thanks to several Christmas markets that appear across its historic centre.

One of those Christmas markets is held in Freedom Square, where holidaymakers will find a 13-metre Christmas tree.

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The tree has been placed in the same spot since 1924 when it became the very first public Christmas tree in the Czech Republic.

Freedom Square is also home to several stalls selling handmade Christmas decorations, as well as hundreds of twinkling lights.

There's also Dominican Square, which has a life-size nativity scene that's reported to be the second biggest of its kind in the world.

The nativity scene was sent to Brno by woodcarver Jiri Halouzka, and it consists of hundreds of different animals and characters.

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The ‘most affordable Xmas market’ in Europe with £15 flights

There's also a letterbox in the square, where children can post their Christmas wishes to baby Jesus.

Meanwhile, Vegetable Square hosts another Christmas market in the city, where holidaymakers will find a merry-go-round and more wooden stalls.

Festive holidaymakers are also encouraged to climb the Old Town Hall tower to take in aerial views of the Christmas attractions.

Brno Christmas market opened on November 23, 2023, and it will stay open until December 23, 2023.

While the city's Christmas plans haven't been announced for 2024, it is thought that they'll be similar to this year's attractions.

Even though the Christmas market is closing in a few days, there are still other reasons to visit the lesser-known European city.

There are plenty of things to do in Brno outside of the festive season, including a visit to the Cathedral of St Peter and St Paul.

The neo-Gothic cathedral is famous for its bells, which always ring at 11am and 12pm – a tradition that dates back to 1645.

Set on Petrov Hill, visitors can climb the cathedral's 84-metre tower for sweeping views across the city.

There's also Spilberk Castle – a 13th-century castle that was first used as a fortress and then as a prison for common criminals.

Entry into the castle is free of charge with the Brnopas, otherwise, visitors will need to pay between £1.75 to £9.80, depending on the type of ticket.

There's also the 10-Z bunker, which started life as a highly classified nuclear fallout shelter used to protect the representatives in the city.

The bunker could house 600 people for three days.

From May 2016, the bunker became a cultural space featuring a retro-style bar.

Other popular tourist attractions include the Old Town Hall, the Museum Of Romani Culture, and the Brno Technical Museum.

Without the snow and winter weather, holidaymakers are also encouraged to wander through the city's historical centre where holidaymakers will find pastel-coloured buildings.

Ryanair operates direct flights from London Stansted to Brno, with flight prices starting from £18for a one-way trip.

With a flight time of 2 hours and 5 minutes, holidaymakers will arrive in the Brno in less time than it takes to get to Bucharest.

Food and drink in the city is cheap too, with a pint of beer costing as little as £1.55, while a meal out at a mid-range restaurant will cost around £7 per person.

Meanwhile, the Super Panda Circus has been described as the "coolest bar ever" by visitors on TripAdvisor.

The Super Panda Circus is an immersive bar where diners' drinks are based on the interactive narrative they're following.

Although, if you're not keen on the chosen drink, you can pick another.

It's also worth remembering that the country doesn't use the Euro, so your holiday cash is likely to go a lot further.

When booking a trip, the summer is the best time to visit, with highs of 26C in July and August.

Katarina Hobbs, CzechTourism Director for UK & Ireland said: "Brno, our second largest city in the Czech Republic is something of a hidden gem for people who might think Prague is the only place to go in Czechia"

"Gradually, the city is becoming more popular and growing in stature all the time.

"There’s just as much to see in Brno and it's an exciting new place for people to take city breaks.

" It has a delightful atmosphere and visitors will be sure of a warm welcome."

Earlier this year, AFAR magazine named Brno as one of next year's must-visit cities too.

Meanwhile, another unknown European city has been named the world’s cheapest holiday destination with £1.60 beers & £16 flights.

Timișoara, a city in western Romania, was recently crowned the world's cheapest city break by luggage storage company Bounce, who crunched the numbers on 75 popular destinations.

In the Romanian city, the average price of a hotel room costs £82 per night.

Here's the UK city tourists never visit but they should because it’s better than anywhere in Europe.

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