Eight European Cities You Have To Visit

Posted in Travel
Eiffel Tower night

While most of us would love to spend weeks exploring continents far afield from the beaches of LA and Miami to the hidden lands of Thailand and Indonesia these types of holidays are not always possible. It isn’t always just because these holidays are more expensive (sometimes they’re not), but it’s a time thing. For most of us we can fit in a few long weekends taking a few odd days holidays or making the most of bank holidays, but less of us have the time to spend two to three weeks exploring. This is where the wonders of Europe comes in. My European bucket list is pretty long and eventually I want to have explored all the major cities across the continent, although this is still a slow moving dream. If like me you like jetting away more frequently here are eight European destinations you have to explore.

Let’s start with the most cliched one: Paris. With so many ways of getting to Paris including plane, eurostar, ferry or driving through the channel tunnel Paris is hugely accessible and understandably is hugely popular with British tourists (and pretty much everyone else from around the globe). And rightfully so. You have the cute picturesque streets lined with trees and cute boutiques, you have plenty to explore artwise including the Louve and Musee De L’Orangie and so many cultural landmarks to scale and enjoy the views from aka The Eiffel Tower, Arc De Triomphe, Notre Dame etc. And come on when you have Disneyland Paris half an hour from the centre do you need more of an excuse to go?! Plus you know pastries and macaroons aglore!


If you’re on quite a tight budget then make sure you head to Krakow which is the second largest city in Poland. It might not be the first place which comes to mind but there’s plenty to do within the city from historical landmarks to the beautiful Jewish quarter, but two things you have to do are the Wieliczka salt mines and the Auschwitz- Birkenau world war two camp. The salt mines are fascinating with sculptures and landmarks created from salt and well Auschwitz doesn’t need an explanation but it’s hugely emotional. The best thing about the city is the price where you can get a three-course meal with wine for around £14 per head and a litre of vodka for under a fiver.


Now onto possibly my favourite European city: Copenhagen. The Danish capital is chocca full of things to do including castles and palaces galore, the biggest aquarium in northern Europe, one of the best zoos I’ve been to, the iconic Little Mermaid statue (it is the home of Hans Christian Anderson) and don’t get me started on Tivoli. Tivoli is an amusement/ theme park meets beautiful gardens right in the city centre so you can see the sights of the city from atop a rollercoaster. Full of Scandivanian chic the city doesn’t have to be expensive but you’ll see why it keeps topping the ‘happiest place in Europe’ lists.

edinburgh castle

If you don’t want to travel too far then hit up the Scottish capital of Edinburgh. Since heading earlier this year I have fallen in love and been back twice already and am already planning a third. I imagine Edinburgh is how London feels to an outsider full of culture, history and beautiful buildings, alongside some great walks and hikes aka Arthurs Seat and Pandas who live at the Edinburgh Zoo. If you’re a spirit lover there’s a gin distillery which does a great value tour (and tasting) and the Scotch Whisky Experience with a similar experience. Make sure you keep your pennies for whiskey, fudge, and Scottish shortbread, yummy!

trevi fountain

I couldn’t do a top European cities post without including somewhere from Italy, and of course it’s Rome. It’s been quite a while since I went but the memories are still vivid in my brain. There’s so much history, culture and architecture in this city from the Colosseum and Roman Ruins to the Spanish Steps and Pantheon. And who can forget the Vatican, I was super lucky when I went to be in an audience with the Pope at the time (I had no idea what he was saying as it was all in German but hey I was there!) Plus of course Italy has some of the best pizza and pasta anyone can wish for.


Having just come back from Budapest it naturally had to feature on this list and is closely becoming one of my favourite city spots. I would probably say the city has the prettiest buildings that I’ve seen in Europe so far with the Parliament, Castle and Fishermans Bastion dominating the river edges. There’s so much to explore and almost every street/ church/ synagogue etc is beautiful, but there’s also plenty of ways to relax courtesy of the natural baths which are scattered around the city. Sink into the heated pools and enjoy a massage by morning and then explore the city in the afternoon. Perfect.


Island hop across the Swedish capital in Stockholm. The city is made up of loads of small islands which means plenty of water and opportunities for boat rides and drinks on the river edge. The best thing about the city is being able to explore by foot as each street and canal front has it’s own quirky style, plus you know it is home to Abba so make sure you hit up the museum! With a small theme park, a cute zoo, and a rainforest themed aquarium it’s the perfect spot for a few days away from home.

berlin wall

The final city in this guide has to be Berlin. Germany has so much to offer and there’s still plenty of cities on my to visit list but the capital is a great place to start. The iconic Berlin wall stands (partially) proud within the city showing how barriers were broken down and each segment is filled with beautiful artwork which you can spend hours exploring. There’s so much history in the city including Checkpoint Charlie showing the crossing point between East and West Berlin during the cold war, a touching memorial to the murdered jews from the holocaust and Brandenburg Gate which is one of the most iconic landmarks in the city.

What European cities do you love? Any recommendations on where I should visit next?

September 30, 2016
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  • bethany naismith

    These are all great choices for cities to visit! I just came back from Paris and I absolutely fell in love with the place!

  • WonderfullyBookish

    I would love so much to visit these all of these places! I’ve been to Paris and it was great, but some of the memories aren’t great (I won’t go into it, haha) so I’d love to visit again. I wish I had a ton of money so I could travel everywhere!

  • Savi and Vid

    Love your picks -Paris and Berlin are a couple of my favourite cities in Europe. I really love Prague too :)

    • Prague is one of the places which has been on my wish list for ages x

  • everinmay

    OK you have officially made me want to book a city break! I loved Rome, it’s probably one of my favourite cities, the architecture and the pasta, I could definitely live there! I’d really recommend Athens, the culture is incredible, the food is amazing and it’s a real mash up of ancient architecture and modern living! xx

    • Athens is on my wishlist as I’d love to see all the Roman architecture x

  • We visited Paris last year with our Daughter and loved it, we had planned to take her on more city breaks, so she could see and learn history and geography and we talked about where we would like to go. Unfortunately on hold due to her illness but all these are on our list x

  • Jenni Grainger

    These all look fab places to visit. My brother and his girlfriend go to Krakow a lot, they love the atmosphere there and it’s quick and cheap for a weekend x

  • Beautyqueenuk

    I am going to Paris next month for the first time, so I am quite excited x

    • Oh when are you there? I’m going for the weekend just before halloween 😀 x

  • I’ve visited a few on this list already and I’m off to Berlin in 18 days so this post has made me even more excited! I think Copenhagen is next on my hit list.

  • Kathryn

    I loved my time in Paris but I haven’t been for so long! Beautiful photographs xx

  • I have been to most of these cities. Would love to visit Milan and Rome.

  • I’ve been to most of these cities. Love Europe and love traveling through it.


  • I finally visited Rome this year and I loved it!

  • Hannah Heartss ❄️⛄️

    I’ve wanted to go to Edinburgh for ages! I hope I get to go x

  • I would love to be able to travel more, I would love to visit Budapest :)

  • Tanya Brannan

    Having just come back from Budapest too, I have to agree. It is simply stunning and probably one of my favourite ever Cities. I am off to Prague in December and am interested to see what that is like. I also love Istanbul, Barcelona and Warsaw!

  • Anthea

    We went to Paris for me eldest 10th birthday and had a fantastic time. We’re off to Amsterdam for my twins 10th. Stockholm is on my bucket lis … actually I’d love to see more of scandinavia in general

  • Gem

    Ahhh this post makes me crave another holiday so badly! I love a European city break and Budapest is next on my list :)

    Gemma x | http://www.flutterandsparkle.com

  • LaaLaa

    A friend of mine went to Germany earlier this year and he sent me pictures of the architecture and how clean the streets were, never thought of Germany as a place to visit but definitely would now xo

  • Mellissa Williams

    I’m going to Budapest and Vienna very soon and can’t wait. Krakow is on my list to go soon too. We went to the Christmas markets in Berlin last year. Iceland is on my list next!

  • Lots of these are on my list to visit and I’m hoping to do more weekend breaks in the future. Paris will always be my favourite though after I lived there for a time!

  • Ickle Pickle

    Oh I would love to visit all these! I love cities, there are some truly incredible ones. Not too far to travel too either. Kaz x

  • mummyslittlemonkey

    Fab list! I’ve ticked off six of them – just Budapest and Krakow to go (both are on my ‘must-do’ list). x

  • Fantastic list! These places look amazing! I’d love to visit to them all, sadly, I’ve only been to one..Paris!

  • fashion-mommy

    Have only done two of these, love both Paris and Rome. Would add Lisbon and Barcelona to this list too.

  • I live in Edinburgh and can vouch that it is a very beautiful city. I also have such a soft spot for Budapest it is stunning too!
    L x

  • I have been to most of these and can certainly vouch for them and next month I am heading to Rome. I am so excited.

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