Discover the best destinations, cities and natural wonders of North, South, Central, West and East Europe including France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, the Baltic Countries, Poland, the Czech republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria , Hungary, Russia Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece and the Balkans countries
Europe also called the old continent refers to both a cultural and political distinction as well as a physiographic one. It is, and especially Ancient Greece, the birthplace of Western civilization and still offers today a very rich cultural heritage. Europe can be divided into a variety of regions, but a common grouping is between the North and South , East and West. Some of the best destination in Northern Europe includes the United Kingdom, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Baltic Countries. As for the Western countries it includes France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Poland, the Czech republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria , Hungary and Russia for the East subcontinent. Finally some of the key places in Southern Europe includes Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece and the Balkans countries. Let’s discover the best cities, most amazing natural beauty and idyllic beaches in Europe.
Discover the top destinations of Europe on our Interactive Europe Map. The map includes all the countries of the continent, the best places, top cities, most remarkable natural wonders and the most beautiful beaches regions.
Top Holiday destinations in Europe
The following are the best places to enjoy a great sunshine holiday in Europe. From the beaches of Portugal and Spain, to charming medieval cities of Krakow, Prague or Dubrovnik, passing by classic French and Italian Riviera vacation destinations, we compiled the list so it will suit everyone’s taste. Will that be the love of the mountains , excitement of the cities or just chill out in a sand and sea resort.
The top 10 Europe holiday destinations include:
- Portugal holidays
- Spain holidays
- Croatia holidays
- Greece Holidays
- Italy Holidays
- France holidays
- Netherlands holidays
- Poland holidays
- Czech Republic holidays
- Hungary Holidays
Portugal offers some of the best weather in Europe along with thousands of kilometres of beautiful coastline blessed with sandy beaches. The heart of the country is worth visiting as well with many picture perfect towns, ideal to get away from it all. Portugal is also an excellent choice for golf lovers with plenty of excellent courses to choose from, some even with impressive views over the Atlantic ocean.
If you are looking to spent a wonderful time with friends or family, enjoying great food and succulent local wines then Portugal is definitely the place to choose for your next sunny holiday.
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Top holiday destinations in Portugal listed by the most popular:
Spain is an all time favourite of the best holiday destinations list. It is not a surprise, with one of Europe’s longest and most beautiful coastline, a fascinating culture and an emphasis on good life, with delicious food and great local wines. Not to forget that Spain is renown to be the party capital of Europe, especially on the Southern islands of Ibiza. With a great weather all year round, Spain has become a favourite destination amongst European, and especially British.
Some of the top holidays places in Spain include:
- Balearic Islands holidays including Ibiza, Majorca, Menorca
- Barcelona holidays
- Spanish Costs holidays including Costa Brava, Costa Dorada, Costa Blanca, Costa Calida, Costa de Almeria, Costa Tropical, Costa del Sol, Costa de La Luz
The Croatian coast is well less know then the Spanish, French or Italian Riviera, but has nothing to envy its neighbours and is becoming more and more a sought after place to spend a summer holiday. Indeed the Makarska Riviera is the picture perfect place to enjoy a relaxing holiday, succumbing to the warm and crystal clear waters of the amazing Mediterranean sea, or going on excursions to admire the stunning scenery of hidden coves and hillside greenery. Croatia is also the perfect place to enjoy a more cultural experience, with numerous UNESCO listed treasures including the most famous places of Dubrovnik, Zagreb and Split.
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Greece is another of Europe top holiday destination, famous for a multitude of paradise islands such as the breathtaking Santorini. It is known to be the cradle of Western civilisation and home to some of the world’s most splendid and famous architecture including many classical area monuments such as the Parthenon in Athens. Apart of its culturally rich heritage, Greece is the land of good food, olive oil and wines. Indeed the Greek cuisine blends local and foreign influences from Italy and Turkey, often serving freshly-caught seafood and garden vegetables.
Some of the top holidays destinations in Greece include:
They aren’t many places in Europe that offers so much as Italy. From the fabulous mountains and lakes to the north to the beautiful beaches of Sicily, passing by the charming cities of Venice, Naples or Rome. Whatever you dream holiday looks like, from discovering ancient architecture or relaxing by a lake, the charming country of Italy has it all.
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Some of the top Italian Holiday destinations include:
France is one of the best choices of holiday in Europe, being only a short flight or train from Britain or other continental destinations. Paris, the capital is obviously one of the most beautiful as well as the most visited in France. However if you are looking to spend some time near the sea, then the French Riviera in the south is the place to be.
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It is said that the Cote D’Azur, the French Riviera is one of the world’s most beautiful coasts. It is composed of over a hundred kilometres of coastline, stretching from the famous rich people hangout of St Tropez until the border with Italy, passing by some of the world’s most sought after cities such as Nice, Cannes and Monaco. The French Riviera covers some of France most beautiful region , including Provence known for its picture perfect small villages and the Southern Alps region known for its breathtaking mountains. Both regions offers an abundance of local products, including delicious cheese, various sweets and some of the world’s best wines.
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The Netherland makes for an ideal short holiday. Indeed it has some of Europe’s friendliest and welcoming people, famous for knowing how to have a great time. The country is extremely flat making it an ideal place for cycling or walking. Amsterdam, the capital, known for being the Venice of the north with its network of canals, offers a rich cultural, architectural and artistic heritage. Van Gogh one of the greatest painters of all time even has its own dedicated museum. The city is also known across the world for the variety of its adult entertainments found in the red light district or inside the famous coffee shops. If you are looking for a perfect mix of culture and entertainment, then Amsterdam is the place to spend your next holiday break.
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Poland is one of the less known holiday destination in Europe. However it is gaining some popularity, especially by those that want to experience something a bit different. From the charming cities of Gdansk on the Baltic coast to the breathtaking natural beauty of the Carpathian mountains in the South , passing by the unique wilderness of the Bialowieza National Park or the Great Malsurian Lakes to the East, the country has something for everyone. Most of the Polish cities where destroyed during the Second War, but miraculously the city of Krakow remained untouched. It is therefore not a surprise that it is today the most visited place in Poland offering much in cultural attractions as well as numerous places for party lovers.
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Czech Republic holidays
The Czech Republic is a charming little country in eastern Europe. It has the capital, Prague at its heart surrounded with a variety of picture perfect towns and castles set in an amazing landscape. Some of the best known places includes the Spa towns of Brno and Janske Lazne, Ceský Krumlov, known for its fabulous medieval architecture and other towns such as Karlstejn and Konopiste known for their grand medieval castles
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The Republic of Hungary is a beautiful country set in the heart of Eastern Europe which is slowly becoming one of the most popular destinations. It is a wonderful place with great people, mixing various influences and cultures over the years. Hungary is home to some of the most amazing natural wonders the region has to offers including Europe’s biggest lake the Lake Balaton, ideal for a variety of water sports.
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Top destinations in North Europe
North Europe includes the regions of the British islands comprising of the United Kingdom and Ireland, the Scandinavian Peninsula with Norway, Sweden and Finland, the Baltic Countries including Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania and finally Denmark and Iceland.
Some of the top places in Northern Europe includes the United Kingdom, Denmark, Norway and Sweden with the best Cities to party, live or must visit including London, Stockholm and Oslo.
The United Kingdom offers a variety of great attractions, museums, galleries, theatres and nightlife especially around its capital. Indeed London is home to the world famous British Museum, to the Tate Modern, the world largest modern art gallery and the Tower of London.
There is also a variety of wonderful sites outside of the capital including the 5000 years old standing stones in Stonehenge, one of the world’s most famous prehistoric site, and the remains of the Roman lifestyle in the beautiful and peaceful city of Bath. England is also home to numerous colleges and university including Oxford and Cambridge, some of the world’s oldest and most prestigious academic institutions.
Towards the north of the UK, one may discover the Scottish Highlands with its astonishing natural beauty and a variety of old castles, such as the Scottish lochs and the Edinburgh castle.
Ireland is home to breathtaking scenery and rocky cliffs of the Dingle Peninsula. It is the ideal place to enjoy a couple of pints and traditional music in one of many Dublin’s Pubs.
The Scandinavian Peninsula consist of three countries including Norway, Sweden and Finland, each with its distinctive charm. Sweden and its capital Stockholm is a remarkable destination with all of its colourful buildings. As for Norway it is home to the Norwegian fjords, the Aurora Boreal and the Lofoten islands.
Denmark is an exciting small country in North Europe with its wonderful capital city of Copenhagen and the Tivoli Gardens the most popular tourist attraction in the country.
The Baltic Countries include the nations of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Estonia is famous for its capital city Tallinn, with its historic centre, part of the UNESCO world heritage site. As for Latvia it is mostly known for Riga, the Baltic’s region most cosmopolitan city.
Top destinations in West Europe
Some of the top places in Western Europe include France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland and Austria and some of the best cities to party, live or must visit include Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels and Berlin.
France has so much to offer in natural and cultural attractions, making it an all time favourite touristic destination. From the cliffs of Etretat in Normandy and the Mont St Michel to Monet’s Garden at Giverny, passing by the Chartes cathedral and the numerous sites of Paris such as the Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Louvre, the world’s largest Museum. France other key sights include the Fontainebleau castle set in the middle of a forest, the Chateau de Chenonceaux and many others castles in the Loire Valley, Les Gorges du Verdon, Europe’s largest Grand Canyon, roman arena of Arles, a UNESCO world heritage site, Old Marseille and St-Tropez in the South of France.
The Netherlands and its capital city Amsterdam is home to some of the world’s best paintings at the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijksmuseum. Its streets and neighbourhoods are world famous for their coffee shops and red light district.
Switzerland is perhaps one of the most charming place in the heart of Europe with its beautiful old city and astronomical clock in Bern, luxury watches and chocolate in some of the world’s finest boutiques in Geneva and surrounded by some of the largest mountain chains in the world.
Germany is another country with plenty of cultural and historical sites to be discovered from the port town of Breman and its Market Place to the vibrant lifestyle of Berlin, the historic capital of Germany. The Cathedral at Cologne is also worth exploring, so is the magical Black Forest in a beautiful alpine surroundings and the world most famous castle of Neuschwanstein in the Bavarian Alps. Finally Germany is all about its beer variety, especially during Oktoberfest in Bavaria.
Austria is blessed with a remarkable natural beauty with plenty of small villages set in the heart of the Austrian mountains. Other key attractions include the Carillon and the Clock tower in Graz and Vienna, the iconic capital of 18th century classical music.
Belgium is a small country in western Europe with so much to offer from its capital Brussels to one of the most charming medieval city, Bruges, with its narrow streets and canals.
Top destinations in South Europe
The Top places in Southern Europe include Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece and the Balkans countries. As for the best cities to party, live or must visit it include Barcelona, Nice, Monaco, Roma and Dubrovnik.
Spain or España is a beautiful and diverse country taking the most part of the Iberian Peninsula in the westernmost place of Europe. It is famous for having the largest number of World Heritage Cities as well as the second-largest number of World Heritage sites. It is an all time favourite for the best holiday destinations blessed with amazing natural beauty. It is not a surprise, with one of Europe’s longest and most beautiful coastline, a fascinating culture with an emphasis on good life, spoiled with delicious food and great local wines. Not to forget that Spain is renown to be the party capital of Europe, especially in the Southern Balearic Island of Ibiza. With a great weather all year round, Spain has become a favourite destination amongst European.
Portugal is one of the Iberian Peninsula’s most fascinating destination. With a combination of old-fashioned charm, friendly people and breathtaking natural beauty it has everything to impress its visitors. From the beautiful beaches of the southern Algarve, to the amazing inland countryside with picture-perfect villages it is the ideal place for nature lover. As for culture buffs, Portugal amazing history can be felt everywhere, from the World heritage sites such as Sintra to the ancient university town of Coimbra, passing by numerous medieval castles across the country.
Italy is the number one country when it comes to its cultural sites with the world’s largest number of UNESCO sites. From the beauty of Roma, a city set in the past of the grandiose Roman empire, and the Vatican City at its heart to the canals of Venice, perhaps one of the world’s most astonishing cities, Italy has a lot to offer. Other key Italian destinations include Florence city centre, the beautiful region of Tuscany, the old ruins of Pompeii and the splendid Amalfi coast.
Greece is known to be the cradle of philosophy and the western civilization. It is where you will discover the iconic symbol of Ancient Greece with the Acropolis or Parthenon, where you will enjoy a relaxing vacation on Santorini in the southern Cyclades islands or explore the sanctuary of Delphi in its breathtaking surroundings in the north east of Greece. It is also home to the monastery on Mount Athos, a self governing monastic republic, and home to the Mont Olympus the highest peaks in Greece and once the home of the Gods in ancient mythology.
Croatia is one of the lesser known jewel of Southern Europe, famous for its old town and harbour of Dubrovnik, Hvar island and its beautiful beaches, the Blue cave on the shore of Bisevo, its capital Zagreb with its beautiful architecture and museum and Split, one of Croatia most wonderful coastal towns.
Top destinations in East Europe
The top places in Eastern Europe includes Poland, the Czech republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria , Hungary and Russia with some of the best cities to party, live or must visit including Prague, Budapest, Cracow and Moscow.
Poland is an Eastern European country blessed with a variety of historical as well as natural beauty. From the port city of Gdansk on the Baltic sea to the Wawel castle and the Rynek central market place in Krakow, Poland’s best preserved medieval city, passing by the Bialowieza National Park and its biosphere including European Bison, it really has something for everyone. Other key sights include Auschwitz concentration camp, the numerous salt sculpture at the Wieliczka Salt Mine near Krakow, the mountain resort town of Zakopane in the Tatry, the Marienberg Castle, the largest brick castle in the world near Gdansk and the astonishing beauty of the Great Masurian Lakes.
Russia is Europe’s and the world’s largest country offering a variety of famous destination from the famous winter palace, in the former Russian capital of St-Petersburg to the Red Square, Kremlin and metro in Moscow passing by the views of the Lake Baial from the Trans-Siberian Express
The Czech Republic is one of the smallest countries in the Eastern bloc but perhaps one of the most charming. At its heart lies the beautiful capital Prague with its Cesky Krumlov castle and the Charles Bridge.
Hungary is home to the Tokaj wine region which produce some of Hungary best white and sweet dessert wines. The capital Budapest is one of the most beautiful of all European cities.
Top 10 cities in Europe
Top 10 cities to visit in Europe
About Europe: Essential facts
The following are some important facts about Europe, including its geography, economy and information on the countries and cities.
- Europe countries
- Europe population
- Europe geography
- Europe history
Europe has 50 countries and many official languages.
Europe with its population of 731 million represent about 11% of the world’s population, making it the third-most populous continent after Asia and Africa. It is a big decrease compared to the 1900 where Europe represented about a quarter of the total world’s population. It is said that this number will further decrease to about 7% by 2050.
Europe is the world’s second-smallest continent by surface area, covering about 10,180,000 square kilometres (3,930,000 sq mi) or 2% of the Earth’s surface and about 6.8% of its land area. Russia is the largest country in Europe by both area and population, while Vatican City is the smallest.
Europe is part of the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia and is generally divided from Asia to the east by the water divide of the Ural Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian Sea, the Caucasus Mountains, and the Black Sea to the southeast. Europe is bordered by the Arctic Ocean and other bodies of water to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, and the Black Sea and connected waterways to the southeast.
Europe played a predominant role in global affairs from the 16th century onwards, especially after the beginning of colonialism. Between the 16th and 20th centuries, European nations controlled at various times the Americas, most of Africa, Oceania, and large portions of Asia
Both World Wars were largely focused upon Europe, greatly contributing to a decline in Western European dominance in world affairs by the mid-20th century as the United States and Soviet Union took prominence
During the Cold War, Europe was divided along the Iron Curtain between NATO in the west and the Warsaw Pact in the east. European integration led to the formation of the Council of Europe and the European Union in Western Europe, both of which have been expanding eastward since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991 to include countries such as Poland and Hungary