The Ultimate Guide to the Most Popular Destinations in Europe

2023-08-01 00:05:00 - Drany Macley Drany Macley, the senior editor of Vytravels.com, brings extensive journalism background and over eight years of experience in travel writing and editing to the site, offering practical insights and first-hand knowledge through articles on innovative hotels, backed by a BA in Journalism from Ithaca College.

Europe is a continent brimming with rich history, diverse cultures, and breathtaking landscapes that make it one of the most sought-after destinations for travelers worldwide. While countries like Portugal, Spain, Italy, and the United Kingdom often top the list of popular European destinations, there are plenty of other hidden gems waiting to be discovered. Whether you're seeking vibrant city life, stunning natural beauty, or a mix of both, this article will take you on a journey through the 15 best places to visit in Europe. Brace yourself for a whirlwind tour of some of the most captivating destinations this continent has to offer.

 

Portugal: The Ultimate European Summer Destination for 2023

 

Portugal is reigning supreme as the most sought-after European country for summer vacations. Its capital, Lisbon, holds the top spot as the most popular city for leisure travel this season.

Discovering Portugal's Hidden Gems:

Explore Porto, the second-largest city in Portugal, which has also made it to the top ten list of desirable destinations.

Affordability and Access:

RateGain has revealed that flights to Portugal from the Americas offer better value for money compared to any other European country.

 

Spain: A Close Contender

 

Spain takes second place, with its vibrant cities such as Barcelona, Palma De Mallorca, and Madrid making it to the top ten European cities favored by leisure travelers.

A Spanish Delight:

Reports indicate that Spain expects to welcome over 52 million tourists between May and October, solidifying its popularity.

 

Italy: A Classic Choice

 

Italy secures the third spot, which comes as no surprise given the country's enduring appeal even after the pandemic.

Iconic Italian Cities:

Rome and Milan feature among the top ten cities that vacationers are flocking to.

Preferred Destination for Diverse Travelers:

Italy stands out as one of the preferred destinations for couples and families visiting Europe this year.

Philip Comunello, eviivo Regional Director of Iberia and Italy, expresses his excitement about the top three countries. He describes Portugal, Spain, and Italy as truly exceptional, beautiful, and inspiring destinations. He also notes that eviivo has witnessed considerable growth in these regions as more hosts, owners, and hoteliers open vacation rentals, boutique hotels, Airbnbs, and casitas to cater to the growing demand from travelers.

 

UK: Post-Pandemic Rising Star

 

The UK secures the fourth position, experiencing a surge in flight bookings after the pandemic.

The Capital of The UK:

Leisure travelers are choosing London as their preferred city to explore this summer.

 

Greece: A Mediterranean Gem

 

Greece claims the fifth spot, with Athens, the "City of the Violet Crown," emerging as the most coveted destination for US travelers this year.

 

 

The top ten list of most booked destinations for leisure travelers from the US also includes France, Germany, Croatia, Ireland, and the Netherlands.

With a plethora of popular options available, what can travelers expect this summer?

 

The 15 Best Places to Visit in Europe

 

Map of Best Places to Go in Europe

 

1. Paris, France

 

Places in Europe: Best Europe city for bike tours.

Paris, France is a captivating city that offers a wide range of experiences and attractions. Known for its rich history, art, and culture, Paris is a must-visit destination in Europe. One of the highlights of Paris is the opportunity to explore the city by bike, allowing visitors to discover its hidden gems and charming neighborhoods. Whether you're interested in exploring historical landmarks, indulging in exquisite cuisine, or immersing yourself in the vibrant atmosphere, Paris has it all. For more information on traveling to Paris, check out our Paris Travel Guide. If you're looking for the best hotels in Paris, we've got you covered. Families can also find great accommodations in our list of Best Paris Family Hotels. Travelers on a budget can check out our recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Paris. Planning your visit to Paris? Learn about the Best Time to Visit Paris and get ready for an unforgettable experience. If you're traveling with kids, we have tips and suggestions for exploring Paris with children. Don't miss out on the opportunity to dine at the Best Restaurants in Paris and make sure to explore the top attractions with our list of Best Things to Do in Paris. Need help deciding where to stay in Paris? Check out our guide on Where to Stay in Paris.

 

2. Florence, Italy

 

Places in Europe: Best city for foodies and cooking classes in Europe.

Florence, Italy is a city that shouldn't be missed during your visit to Europe. While there are many incredible destinations in Italy, Florence stands out for its unique charm and cultural treasures. Known for its world-class art and historical landmarks, Florence offers visitors a chance to indulge in not only its rich history but also its culinary delights. Food tours and cooking classes are highly recommended to truly experience the essence of Florence. With its convenient location, Florence serves as an excellent base for exploring the picturesque region of Tuscany. To make the most of your visit, check out our Florence Travel Guide. We've handpicked the Best Florence Hotels for your convenience. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Florence Family Hotels. If you're on a budget, don't worry! We've got you covered with our recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Florence. Wondering when to visit Italy? Learn about the Best Time to Visit Italy to plan your trip accordingly. There are plenty of exciting things to do in Florence, so make sure to check out our list of Best Things to Do in Florence. Need help finding the perfect place to stay? Take a look at our guide on Where to Stay in Florence.

 

3. Santorini, Greece

 

Places in Europe: Most romantic place in Europe for honeymoon.

Santorini, Greece is a dream destination and one of the best places to visit in Europe. With its breathtaking caldera views, stunning sunsets, and luxurious hotels, Santorini offers an unforgettable experience. Explore the charming villages, indulge in local wines, relax on the black volcanic beaches, and take in the beauty of this romantic island. Santorini is also a perfect base for exploring nearby islands such as Mykonos, Naxos, and Paros. For more information on traveling to Santorini, check out our Santorini Travel Guide. We've curated a list of the Best Santorini Hotels to ensure you have a comfortable stay. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Santorini Family Hotels. If you're on a budget, we have recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Santorini. Wondering about the best time to visit Santorini? Learn more about the Best Time to Visit Santorini to plan your trip accordingly. Traveling with kids? We've got tips and suggestions for exploring Santorini with children. Don't miss out on the opportunity to dine at the Best Restaurants in Santorini and discover the top attractions with our list of Best Things to Do in Santorini. Need help deciding where to stay? Check out our guide on Where to Stay in Santorini.

 

4. London, England

 

London, England.

London, England is a city that needs no introduction. With its world-class sights, museums, and historical landmarks, London is a must-visit destination in Europe. Beyond the popular attractions, London also offers a vibrant local culture, including markets, shops, neighborhoods, cafes, and restaurants. To truly experience the city, make sure to venture away from the tourist hotspots and explore the lesser-known neighborhoods of greater London. If you're planning a trip to London, we've selected the Best London Hotels for your convenience. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best London Family Hotels. Traveling on a budget? Check out our recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in London. Wondering when is the best time to visit London? Learn about the Best Time to Visit London to plan your itinerary. Traveling with kids? We have tips and suggestions for exploring London with children. Discover the top attractions with our list of Best Things to Do in London and find the perfect place to stay with our guide on Where to Stay in London.

 

5. Amsterdam, Netherlands

 

Places in Europe: Best boat tours and canals in Europe.

Amsterdam, Netherlands is one of the most captivating cities in Europe. With its pedestrian and bike-friendly city center, Amsterdam offers a unique experience to visitors. Explore the charming canals, indulge in delicious cuisine at the city's cafes and restaurants, and immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere. Amsterdam is also home to great museums and leafy parks, making it a perfect destination for art and nature enthusiasts. Many visitors find Amsterdam so enchanting that they dream of living there after just one day. If you're planning a trip to Amsterdam, we've curated a list of the Best Amsterdam Hotels for your convenience. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Amsterdam Family Hotels. If you're on a budget, don't worry! We have recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Amsterdam. Wondering when is the best time to visit Amsterdam? Learn more about the Best Time to Visit Amsterdam to plan your trip accordingly. Traveling with kids? We have tips and suggestions for exploring Amsterdam with children. Need help finding the perfect place to stay? Check out our guide on Where to Stay in Amsterdam.

 

6. Barcelona, Spain

 

Places in Europe: Best markets in Europe.

Barcelona, Spain is an exceptional city that offers a perfect blend of history, culture, and modern life. With its lively nightlife, delicious cuisine, and architectural wonders, Barcelona is a must-visit destination in Europe. Whether you're interested in exploring the monumental historical sights, wandering through colorful markets, or discovering the vibrant neighborhoods, Barcelona has something to offer for everyone. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Barcelona Family Hotels. Traveling on a budget? Check out our recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Barcelona. Wondering about the best time to visit Barcelona? Learn more about the Best Time to Visit Barcelona to plan your trip accordingly. Traveling with kids? We have tips and suggestions for exploring Barcelona with children. Indulge in the local cuisine and dine at the Best Restaurants in Barcelona. Discover the top attractions with our list of Best Things to Do in Barcelona and find the perfect place to stay with our guide on Where to Stay in Barcelona.

 

7. Rome, Italy

 

Places in Europe: Best pizza and pasta in Europe.

Rome, Italy is a city that needs no introduction. Packed with historical landmarks and world-renowned attractions, Rome is a must-visit destination in Europe. From the iconic Colosseum and Trevi Fountain to the Vatican and Sistine Chapel, Rome offers a wealth of cultural and historical treasures. Beyond the historical sights, Rome also boasts a vibrant culinary scene, charming shops, cafes, and neighborhoods. To make the most of your visit, check out our Rome Travel Guide. We've curated a list of the Best Rome Hotels to ensure you have a comfortable stay. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Rome Family Hotels. If you're on a budget, we have recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Rome. Wondering when is the best time to visit Rome? Learn more about the Best Time to Visit Rome to plan your itinerary. Traveling with kids? We have tips and suggestions for exploring Rome with children. Discover the top attractions with our list of Best Things to Do in Rome and find the perfect place to stay with our guide on Where to Stay in Rome.

 

8. Reykjavik, Iceland

 

Places in Europe: Best small capital city in Europe.

Reykjavik, Iceland is the cool capital of Europe. With its vibrant nightlife, cozy cafes, and exceptional restaurants, Reykjavik offers a unique experience to visitors. Explore the stunning natural beauty of Iceland with day trips to the famous Blue Lagoon, whale tours, and mesmerizing landscapes. If you're planning a trip to Reykjavik, we have curated a list of the Best Reykjavik Hotels for your convenience. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Reykjavik Family Hotels. If you're on a budget, we have recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Reykjavik. Wondering when is the best time to visit Iceland? Learn more about the Best Time to Visit Iceland to plan your trip accordingly.

 

9. Edinburgh, Scotland

 

Places in Europe: European city near castles and history.

Edinburgh, Scotland is an extraordinary city known for its castles, historical landmarks, and stunning scenery. This must-visit destination in the U.K. offers a perfect blend of history and modern Scottish life. Explore the magnificent Edinburgh Castle, wander through the charming streets of the historic Old Town, and admire the panoramic views from Arthur's Seat. For a memorable stay, check out our recommendations for the Best Boutique Hotels in Edinburgh. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Edinburgh Family Hotels. Discover the top attractions and learn about the city's history with our guide on Where to Stay in Edinburgh.

 

10. Prague, Czech Republic

 

Places in Europe: Best historical city to visit in Europe.

Prague, Czech Republic is an idyllic European city that captivates visitors with its rich history and enchanting atmosphere. Known as the "City of a Hundred Spires," Prague offers a plethora of sights and experiences. Explore the historical Old Town, visit Prague Castle, and indulge in the local cuisine. Don't forget to try the famous Czech beer! For a comfortable stay, check out our recommendations for the Best Prague Hotels. Families can find suitable accommodations in our list of Best Prague Family Hotels. If you're on a budget, we have recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Prague. Wondering where to stay in Prague? Take a look at our guide on Where to Stay in Prague.

 

11. Galway, Ireland

 

Places in Europe: Best small city in Europe.

Galway, Ireland is a charming small city that offers a true taste of Irish culture. Unlike Dublin, Galway provides an authentic Irish experience, with its vibrant atmosphere and rich heritage. Explore the town's wonderful vibe, visit local markets, and discover the nearby attractions within a 90-minute drive. Find suitable accommodations for your family in our list of Galway Family Hotels.

 

12. Nice, France

 

Places in Europe: Best beach city on Mediterranean in Europe.

Nice, France is a fantastic beach city and a perfect base for exploring the beautiful South of France. With its picturesque beaches and charming town, Nice offers a delightful mid-sized town experience. Take advantage of the convenient train connections to nearby destinations such as Monaco, Cannes, Lyon, and other stunning beaches along the Mediterranean coast. Find suitable accommodations for your family in our list of Best Nice Family Hotels.

 

13. Istanbul, Turkey

 

Places in Europe: Most interesting place to go in Europe.

Istanbul, Turkey is an intriguing and culturally rich city that offers a blend of monumental historical sights and vibrant street culture. While the city is known for its iconic landmarks, such as the Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque, Istanbul also boasts bustling markets, diverse neighborhoods, and incredible Turkish cuisine. Find suitable accommodations for your family in our list of Best Istanbul Family Hotels. If you're on a budget, we have recommendations for the Best Cheap Hotels in Istanbul. Wondering when is the best time to visit Istanbul? Learn more about the Best Time to Visit Istanbul to plan your trip accordingly. Discover the top attractions and learn about the city's history with our guide on Where to Stay in Istanbul.

 

14. Naxos, Greece

 

Places in Europe: Best beaches in Europe.

Naxos, Greece is home to some of the best beaches in Europe. However, the beauty of this island goes beyond its pristine shores. The main town of Naxos, known as Chora, is a charming Greek town filled with traditional charm. Inland, you'll discover enchanting villages and stunning hiking trails. Find suitable accommodations for your family in our list of Best Naxos Family Hotels. Wondering when is the best time to visit Greece? Learn more about the Best Time to Visit Greece to plan your trip accordingly. Explore the top attractions and find the perfect place to stay with our guide on Where to Stay in Naxos.

 

15. Agriturismo Farm Stay in Italy

 

Agriturismo Rentals in Tuscany

One of the most enjoyable and interesting experiences in Europe is staying at a working farm in Italy, particularly in Tuscany, Umbria, or Sicily. Agriturismo offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and enjoy the beauty of the countryside. Many agriturismo stays include two to three meals per day and may offer additional activities such as cooking classes, horse riding, or wine-related experiences. Find out more about agriturismo in Tuscany and Umbria.

 

Best European Destinations by Month

 

Best island in Europe.Santorini is considered the ultimate vacation destination in Europe. This enchanting Greek island boasts an array of exceptional hotels and picturesque cliffside villages. Visitors can enjoy unforgettable experiences such as boat tours, wine tours, and a thrilling jet ski tour to the volcano.

  • Best places in Europe to visit in January: London, Paris, Florence (for shorter museum lines); Sicily, Crete, Southern Spain (for favorable weather conditions).
  • Best places in Europe to visit in February: London, Paris, Florence (for shorter museum lines); Sicily, Crete, Southern Spain (for favorable weather conditions).
  • Best places in Europe to visit in March: Florence, Santorini, Paris, London, Barcelona.
  • Best places in Europe to visit in April: Florence, Rome, Santorini, Paris, London, Barcelona, Lisbon, Porto.
  • Best places in Europe to visit in May: The Greek Islands, Florence, Rome, Paris, London, Barcelona, Lisbon, Porto.
  • Best places in Europe to visit in June: The Greek Islands, Paris, London, Barcelona, Lisbon, Porto, South France, Reykjavik.
  • Best places in Europe to visit in July: The Greek Islands, Ibiza, Menorca, Mallorca, Reykjavik (although these are busy destinations).
  • Best places in Europe to visit in August: The Greek Islands, Ibiza, Menorca, Mallorca, Reykjavik (although these are busy destinations).
  • Best places in Europe to visit in September: Santorini, Mykonos, Barcelona, Lisbon, Porto, South France, London.
  • Best places in Europe to visit in October: Santorini, Crete, Florence, Barcelona, Sicily, Lisbon, Porto.
  • Best places in Europe to visit in November: Santorini, Crete, Florence, Barcelona, Sicily, Lisbon, Porto, Paris.
  • Best places in Europe to visit in December: Barcelona, Rome, Paris.

 

Warsaw, Poland

 

Warsaw, Poland

 

EBD Warsaw, the #1 European Best Destination 2023, is a beautiful city that offers something for everyone. Whether you're looking for a family city break, a cultural adventure, a shopping spree, or a romantic getaway, Warsaw has it all.

 

 

Take a leisurely stroll in the city's stunning parks, relax on the sandy city beaches, and indulge in the diverse gastronomic delights. No matter the time of year, Warsaw's rich calendar of events guarantees entertainment for all.

 

 

Don't miss the chance to explore the historic Old Town Market Square with its colorful buildings, marvel at the impressive Palace of Culture and Science (the second tallest building in Poland), and immerse yourself in the beauty of Lazienki Park with its palaces, pavilions, and orangeries.

 

 

Embark on a journey through history by visiting The Warsaw Barbican, the historic fortifications that once encircled Warsaw.

 

 

If you're traveling with family, make sure to visit Warsaw Zoo and enjoy a refreshing dip at Moczydlo Water Park, which offers thrilling slides, wave pools, and various water activities.

 

 

Notably, Warsaw is recognized as one of the safest city breaks in Europe, surpassing the safety levels of popular destinations like Paris, Rome, and Vienna.

 

 

Athens, Greece

 

Athens, Greece.

 

EBD Athens, the capital of Greece, is a must-visit destination for numerous reasons. Not only is it considered the birthplace of democracy and philosophy, but it also captivates visitors with its mesmerizing coastlines, breathtaking landscapes, and abundant sunshine, which provide a sense of escape from everyday worries.

 

 

Athens is a sophisticated cosmopolitan hub that boasts exceptional gastronomic delights, vibrant nightlife, creative vibes, and a thriving art scene. It shines as an artistic beacon of the ancient world, with remarkable Mediterranean landscapes. Moreover, Athens is recognized as one of the Best Street Art Destinations in Europe.

 

 

While in Athens, make sure to explore the Most Beautiful Beaches in Greece, discover the Best Hidden Gems in Greece, visit the Most Beautiful Islands in Greece, and witness the Best Natural Wonders in Greece.

 

 

Maribor, Slovenia

 

Maribor, Slovenia's heart-shaped road along the wine route.

 

EBD Maribor, one of the most beautiful Slovenian destinations and a European Best Destination 2023, charms travelers with its rich cultural and culinary offerings. Located in the northeastern region of the country, Maribor boasts a deep historical heritage dating back to the Middle Ages, reflected in its captivating architectural treasures and authentic experiences.

 

 

The locals take pride in the Guinness World Record for hosting the world's oldest grapevine.

 

 

As the European Capital of Culture in 2012, Maribor has built a reputation as a joyful and welcoming city that hosts numerous international cultural and sporting events throughout the year.

 

 

The picturesque natural scenery surrounding Maribor provides endless opportunities for hiking, biking, skiing, and other thrilling sports activities.

 

 

Adding to its allure, Maribor has been awarded the title of Best Culinary Destination in Europe, making it an even more enticing place to visit.

 

 

Vienna, Austria

 

Vienna, Austria

 

EBD Vienna, the enchanting capital of Austria, offers an ideal setting for romance. Take a delightful horse-drawn carriage ride, visit the city's royal palaces, and dance to the elegant tunes of Strauss's Blue Danube in the evening, immersing yourself in the era of Empress Sissi.

 

 

Vienna is also the perfect city for a unique and vibrant getaway, catering to friends, families, lovers, and singles alike.

 

 

As an openly gay-friendly city, Vienna has gained recognition as one of the safest destinations in Europe. The strong sense of security, coupled with the city's high quality of life and low crime rate, creates a welcoming and comfortable environment.

 

 

Spring and summer are ideal times to visit Vienna, as the parks, classified among the most beautiful city parks in Europe, come alive with blooming flowers and ancient trees. Notably, the Prater park is home to one of the most splendid Ferris wheels on the continent.

 

 

Vienna is also considered one of the best places in Europe for a memorable marriage proposal. For those seeking a chance to meet new people, the Palmenhaus, the largest greenhouse in Europe, houses a trendy bar and a superb restaurant serving Austrian specialties.

 

 

Cittadella, Italy

 

Cittadella,Padua

 

EBD Cittadella, located in the heart of the Veneto Region in Northern Italy, stands as the most stunning walled city in Europe and preserves its beauty like no other.

 

 

Strategically positioned, Cittadella offers easy access to nearby prominent cities, including Venice, Verona, Milan, and Florence, making it an ideal starting point to explore the Veneto and Northern Italy.

 

 

Founded in 1220, its medieval origins contribute to the historical value of its well-preserved walls. The city boasts a unique elliptical medieval walkway that can be fully experienced and explored.

 

 

Essen, Germany

 

Essen, old historical center, Germany.

 

EBD Essen, Germany's third-greenest city, bears the prestigious titles of Capital of Culture 2010, European Green Capital, and pulsating metropolis in the Ruhr region.

 

 

This vibrant city harmoniously combines modern urban districts with a rich historic old town, blending high culture with street art and showcasing the charm of former collieries amidst lush green meadows and forests.

 

 

In Essen, visitors can admire the UNESCO World Heritage Zollverein and the magnificent Villa Hügel, once the seat of the industrial Krupp family. An extraordinary high-tech city tour takes you to the world's oldest sculpture of the Virgin Mary, the Golden Madonna in Essen Cathedral.

 

 

Explore the city's natural wonders by venturing along Baldeneysee and the Ruhr Valley or indulge in the industrial culture and history of old coal mine settlements in the urban north.

 

 

For moments of relaxation, immerse yourself in the tranquil atmosphere of the centrally-located Grugapark, spanning 170 acres, or enjoy various water sports activities in the scenic Baldeneysee leisure paradise.

 

 

Veszprém, Hungary

 

Veszprem, Hungary.

 

EBD Veszprém, honored as the European Capital of Culture 2023 and the Best Destination to Visit in Hungary in 2023, is a gem nestled between the wooded slopes of the Bakony Hills and the northern shore of Lake Balaton. It offers a unique blend of natural beauty and captivating cityscape.

 

 

Known as the "City of Queens," Veszprém has been a cultural meeting place for a millennium. Delve into the contemporary art galleries, vibrant music scene, and diverse festivals that shape the city's cultural tapestry.

 

 

Explore cozy cafés, atmospheric bistros, and first-rate restaurants while indulging in the local gastronomy.

 

 

For a memorable family experience, head to Veszprém Zoo or discover the signs leading you to breathtaking Veszprém Zoo.

 

 

London, U.K.

 

London, UK

 

EBD After the challenges of Brexit, the impact of Covid, and temporary border closures, it's time to rediscover the magic of London in 2023. As one of Europe's most visited destinations, London continues to captivate travelers from all walks of life.

 

 

London stands as a vibrant tapestry of traders, businesspeople, eccentrics, artists, creators, designers, royals, and celebrities. Its tourist offerings go well beyond iconic landmarks such as Big Ben, the London Eye, and Madame Tussauds, which never fail to enchant visitors young and old.

 

 

The city's parks, renowned for their rare beauty, rank among the most attractive city parks in Europe. They provide the perfect backdrop for legendary films like "Notting Hill." Additionally, London offers diverse shopping experiences, from the colorful houses of Portobello flea markets to the trendy neighborhoods of Camden Town and the commercial elegance of Regent Street and Oxford Street. Not to mention the artistic and independent shopping districts of Carnaby Street, Covent Garden, and the LGBTQ-friendly Soho.

 

 

London's theaters are renowned for hosting world-class plays and musicals, providing unforgettable cultural experiences.

 

 

Spring and summer in London offer the opportunity to enjoy the serene beauty of the city's parks, including the sublime Richmond Park, with blooming flowers, ancient trees, and freely roaming deer.

 

 

Grenoble Alps, France

 

Grenoble Alps, France.

 

EBD Grenoble, nestled in the heart of emblematic mountain ranges such as Vercors, Chartreuse, and Belledonne, boasts an exceptional location. As a pioneer, innovative city, and the Capital of the Alps, Grenoble continuously reinvents itself, offering a delightful blend of urban and nature-based experiences.

 

 

Recognized as the best green destination in this year's competition and awarded the title of European Green Capital by the European Union, Grenoble appeals to those seeking a harmonious blend of culture, performing arts, open spaces, and outdoor activities, both in winter and summer. Ski touring at Col de Porte, urban via-ferrata on the foothills of the Bastille, canoeing on the Isère river, and paragliding in Saint Hilaire du Touvet are just a few examples of the thrilling adventures awaiting visitors. Wintertime even offers the chance for night skiing with breathtaking views of Grenoble.

 

 

Grenoble is notably the flattest city in France, enabling easy exploration by bicycle along its extensive 450 kilometers of cycle paths. The city has 21 sign-posted mountain biking paths, perfect for leisurely rides during your downtime.

 

 

Moreover, Grenoble has been recognized as the best destination to visit in France in 2023 and is ranked among the Best Street Art Destinations in Europe.

 

 

Toledo, Spain

 

Toledo, Spain.

 

EBD Toledo, a city that seamlessly blends eras, styles, and identities, stands as one of the best medieval destinations in Europe and a prime choice for Erasmus students, thanks to its renowned university.

 

 

Toledo, derived from the Latin word "Toletum," meaning "fortified population," was built by the Romans in the 2nd century BC. Situated at the heart of Spain, Toledo is easily accessible from Madrid, just a 30-minute train ride away.

 

 

Faial, Azores

 

Faial island in the Azores, Portugal.

 

EBD If you're searching for untamed natural beauty, look no further than the Azores, a group of islands greener than Iceland. Offering a moderate climate, the Azores are a paradise for nature lovers, outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, and even gastronomy enthusiasts. Notably, the islands are ranked among the best wedding destinations in Europe, perfectly blending romance and natural wonders.

 

 

Within the Azores, Faial island stands out, boasting magnificent landscapes, unique bird and plant species, and iconic geological formations framed by the breathtaking blue sea. Alongside Sao Jorges and Pico, Faial forms a trio of exceptional islands in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean—a favored stopover for sailors crossing the ocean.

 

 

The biodiversity of Faial is truly remarkable, with 855 vascular plant species, 57 of which are endemic to the island. The surrounding sea serves as a captivating mosaic of colors, shadows, sounds, and life, encompassing cetaceans, seabirds, sharks, and various marine inhabitants.

 

 

Rhodes, Greece

 

Rhodes Island, Greece

The island of Rhodes is a captivating destination that appeals to lovers of ancient architecture, imposing fortresses, the turquoise sea, and majestic castles. This medieval city is remarkably well-preserved and offers a wealth of attractions, including the Palace of the Grand Master, the Ancient Acropolis of Lindos, and the historic Rhodes Old Town. Alternatively, visitors can simply unwind on the beautiful beaches of Agios Pavlos or Tsambika.

Rhodes is not only one of the most stunning islands in Greece but also one of the most remarkable in all of Europe. It caters to a wide range of travelers, making it a perfect destination for everyone. Additionally, Rhodes boasts a sunny climate from May until late September, and its natural wonders, such as "Kallithea," the Butterfly Valley, and Lindos Village & Seven Springs, are simply breathtaking.

 

Copenhagen, Denmark

 

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, the trendy capital of Denmark, is brimming with hidden treasures just waiting to be discovered. From thrift stores to independent boutiques and the renowned Tivoli Garden, which is recognized as one of the top amusement parks in Europe, this city offers a plethora of attractions. Moreover, couples can enjoy romantic cruises along the legendary canal.

There are countless activities and experiences to relish in Copenhagen. As one of the culinary capitals of the world, the city is home to some of the finest restaurants globally and serves as the hub of craft beer.

 

Tossa de Mar, Spain

 

Tossa de Mar, Spain

Tossa de Mar, located on the stunning Costa Brava in Spain, enchants visitors with its breathtaking blue skies, azure sea, and fine sandy beaches. The town is characterized by a scenic pine forest and ancient medieval walls, making it one of Spain's most exquisite hidden gems.

Just an hour and a half from Barcelona, Tossa de Mar boasts several pristine golden-sand beaches, and the idyllic fishing village is enhanced by the invigorating scent of the surrounding pine trees. The crowning jewel is the magnificent medieval castle that adds a touch of grandeur to the picturesque scene.

 

Milos, Greece

 

Milos, Greece

Milos Island has earned its reputation as one of the dreamiest holiday destinations in Greece. It has also been recognized for its exceptional natural beauty, boasting one of Europe's best natural pools and beaches. Additionally, the island is home to some of the finest sculptures in Europe, such as the Venus of Milo, which was discovered by a local peasant.

Milos is celebrated as one of the most beautiful islands in Greece, attracting visitors who seek a serene retreat. Be it a relaxing day spent on the exquisite Sarakiniko beach or the exclusive Firiplaka beach, or exploring the historical treasures like the Ancient Theatre of Milos and the Milos Archaeological Museum, this island has something to offer to every traveler.

 

Prague, Czech Republic

 

Scenic summer aerial view of the Old Town pier architecture and Charles Bridge over Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic

Prague stands as one of the most popular destinations in Europe, captivating visitors with its vibrant markets, charming cafes, historic monuments, quaint boutiques, and breathtaking sunrises. Given the city's popularity, EBD suggests starting your exploration early to experience Prague from a unique perspective.

This city is renowned for hosting some of Europe's best Christmas markets and is considered an ideal destination to celebrate New Year's Eve. Additionally, Prague ranks highly among the best honeymoon destinations in Europe, the most romantic places to propose, and the top fairy tale destinations in Europe.

In conclusion, Europe continues to reign as a dream destination for travelers from all around the world. From the sun-soaked beaches of Portugal to the ancient ruins of Greece, there is something for everyone in this diverse and captivating continent. The top 10 most popular destinations for summer 2023 include iconic cities like London, Vienna, and Prague, as well as off-the-beaten-path gems like Maribor and Veszprém. Whether you're seeking history, culture, or breathtaking natural landscapes, Europe has it all. So start planning your next adventure and get ready to be enchanted by the charm and beauty that awaits you in Europe. Bon voyage!

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