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Cologne, Germany Cologne is not a place for lovers, its charms are best seen alone.

No one expects towns in the American rust belt or the cluttered backstreets of Mumbai to tug at the heartstrings in the same way as, say, Venice. Destinations that lay a claim to romance are immediately held to a far more stringent standard.

If those iconic hot spots don’t deliver a swoon-worthy stay, the disappointment can be akin to being jilted at the altar.

A giddy triumph of architectural creativity and whimsical dreams over the basic fact that things built into water will eventually sink? Chongqing, China Simon Calder has tried to goad me into nominating Birmingham, knowing that I’ve been there more than once with my boyfriend.

Come in February, and there are fewer visitors – but this is because the wind which whips off the Adriatic will leave your hands so stiff that you won’t be able to pluck that engagement ring from its box.

If you were thinking of taking a date to Britain on a romantic Valentine’s Day jaunt, be warned: not everywhere has thatched roofs and servants called Jeeves.

In fact, according to a survey published by the holiday booking site Hotels.com, there are just as many unromantic locations for a weekend away as there are romantic ones, so you may want to hang onto this list for next year. Bath Somerset is currently under several feet of flood water, which means that getting to visit the ancient Roman baths in Bath involves wading through a mudbath of a different sort. Isle of Wight They do things differently on The Island.Romantic destinations require three key ingredients: beauty, mystery, and a sense of exclusivity.But a foul smell can turn beauty into ugliness in a second, just as being one of thousands lining up to gaze upon a supposedly romantic sight can quickly rob it of its allure.Pasta lovers should go for types of pasta that are easier to eat, like farfalle, macaroni or orecchiette.when the two dogs share the same pasta noodle has gone down in the books as one of the most romantic meals in film.Paris, for example, may well have written the book on romance, but it sometimes feels like the clichéd Harlequin variety, especially during summertime around the city’s most famous sights, which lure every lovebird within 10,000 miles.