By Dana Perkiss
Filled with uniquely diverse and bucket list-worthy cities, it can be pretty hard deciding where to go in Europe. Whether you want sunny shores and beaches, or ancient history and culture, here is a list of the best places to travel in Europe right now!
Ah, Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland – a top destination for travelers looking for a vibrant nightlife scene, stunning scenery, and rich culture. Situated right on the coast, visitors are easily able to stroll along the old harbor where you can spot whales and puffins. Even more spectacular, visitors can marvel at the phenomenal Northern Lights when you travel to Reykjavik!
Iceland is famous for its health and wellness activities, and its thriving capital city is no different! Slightly south of Reykjavik, you’ll find the iconic Blue Lagoon where you can soak in geothermal seawater pools and fully rejuvenate your body through therapeutic treatments.
Located in southern Spain in the Andalusia region, Seville is a vibrantly colorful, bright city filled with astounding architecture, mouthwatering tapas, and tons of parks – it’s even nicknamed “Sunny Seville”! Rumored to have been built by the legendary Hercules, Seville is a simply magical city where orange trees line the streets with sounds of guitars and Flamenco dancing echoing off yellow-and-blue buildings. Speaking of, seeing a Flamenco show is a must-do when you travel to Seville – just make sure to book tickets in advance!
Seville is also renowned for its Moorish and Gothic architecture, and there are many iconic monuments for you to check out. This includes (but definitely is not limited to): Giralda Tower, the Royal Alcázar Palace, and Hotel Alfonso XIII.
In a country as magnificent as Italy, it’s hard to pick just one city – but if you have to, then consider a vacation in Florence! As both the capital of Italy’s Tuscany region and the birthplace of the Renaissance, Florence is the perfect destination for all travelers. You can appreciate epic art at Uffizi, which is filled with some of the best art pieces in the world, or marvel at Brunelleschi’s marble masterpiece which can be seen throughout the city.
Though Florence is small enough to explore on foot, there are also many medieval villages to check out on easy day-trips! Arezzo, Siena, Pisa, Chianti – the list goes on, which makes Florence the perfect home-base for any Italy vacation.
Calling out the wine lover’s – Porto is for you! A coastal city found in northwest Portugal, Porto is world-renowned for its port wine and wineries abundant in the luscious Douro region. It’s the second largest city in Portugal and boasts a charming medieval district, cobblestone streets, and its UNESCO World Heritage-listed historic centre.
Romanesque and Gothic architecture fill this city, as well as deliciously fresh seafood and other Portuguese cuisine specialties. As for things to do in Porto, there’s something for everyone here! You can gaze at pastel-colored houses while strolling along the Cais da Ribeira, visit the famous Livraria Lello bookstore with its dazzling wooden staircase and Gothic design, or enjoy lively bars and concerts in Downtown Porto.
As the fifth largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and largest in Greece, Crete is a wonderfully ancient city bursting with things to do and see. Made up of various ancient ruins, beautiful beaches, and astounding cuisine, there’s something for everyone in Crete.
Sun-soakers can rejoice at the pristine pink-sand Elafonisi Beach or picturesque Balos Lagoon, history-buffs can marvel at the 3,000 year old Knossos palace or dramatic Phaistos Palace and Archaeological Site, while those looking for an easy-going time can simply explore Rethymno Old Town or Chania’s Venetian harbor.
If you’re looking for the best Ireland vacation, then consider Killarney! Located in the southwest of County Kerry, Killarney is a charming town offering a phenomenal National Park, colorfully-decorated 19th century buildings, and is along the famous Ring of Kerry.
Killarney National Park is huge, filled with tons of hiking trails through woodlands, around lakes, and surrounded by marvelous mountains. Inside the park, you can find the 15th-century Ross Castle along the lake Lough Leane, as well as the Killarney House & Gardens and Muckross House Gardens & Traditional Farms. For something extra exciting, you can go on an adventure with the Killarney Falconry, where you can go on “hawk walks” and learn to handle these birds!
Interested in dazzling beaches, fascinating culture, and Mediterranean-vibes? Then Nice is the best place for you! Found in the beautiful French Riviera, Nice provides an old-world charm with new-city energy plus year-round sunshine.
You can enjoy charming seaside walks along the Promenade des Anglais, wander around the oldest part of the city in Vieille Ville, or hike up Mont Boron for stunning panoramic views of Nice. Of course, there are also plenty of places to appreciate art here – you can visit the Musée Marc Chagall, Musée Masséna, and more.
This extravagant city has been featured in countless films, postcards, and literature – and for good reason! Bursting with history and posh personality, London is brimming with things to do.
First and foremost, the spectacular Buckingham Palace is definitely worth seeing in person and potentially witnessing the infamous Changing of the Guard! You’ll also want to walk around Westminster to check out the iconic Big Ben clock tower and Houses of Parliament, and take a stroll through the charming Hyde Park. No trip to London is truly complete without visiting the London Eye, though the vibrant neighborhood of Camden is an absolute must-do as well.