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20 one-week europe trip itinerary ideas.

One Week Europe Itinerary Ideas

Wondering where to spend one week in Europe? These 20 ideas for your Europe trip will help you decide how to maximize your time.

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How to Choose the Best One Week Itinerary for a Europe Trip: 20 Europe Itinerary Ideas

If you’re like most people and getting time off work or kids out of school is challenging, you may only be able to manage one week of vacation. Europe is a great destination to go for one week, simply because of the cultural diversity in such a small geographic area.

The small size, proximity, and ease of transportation between many of the countries in Europe make it a good choice for a culturally rich one week holiday. If you’ve only got one week in Europe, and really want to maximize your time, but you’re wondering where to go in Europe, here are 20 perfect one-week Europe travel itineraries.

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If you're heading to Europe and only have one week to enjoy it, try one of these 20 one week European itineraries that will help you make the most of your time. #Europe #Itinerary #Vacation

  • Before You go to Europe

Europe is an amazing destination, especially if you pick any of these awesome itineraries, but before leaving there are a few things you should consider when planning your Europe trip:

  • KNOW BEFORE YOU GO: Before you go to Europe, be sure you follow my 50 travel tips for Europe. You can find those here. 

And the winter months are generally cold in most European countries, especially in the north.That doesn’t mean you should avoid those times, it just depends on your tolerance for crowds and your preference in weather.

  • WHAT TO PACK FOR EUROPE: What you pack for Europe will highly depend on what time of year you go and where you decide to go. This  packing guide for Europe will ensure you have the essentials.
  • GETTING AROUND: Getting around Europe can be a little daunting, but if you do some research before you go, you’ll be just fine. Transportation in every country in Europe is a little different. I’ve linked many of my articles with helpful advice below like   How to Survive Train Travel in Italy   and   Driving in Scotland . Some itineraries will require you to go by train, car, plane or boat. Travel around Europe doesn’t have to be scary if you learn what to do ahead of time.

If you’re renting a car, there are two companies we prefer to use: Rental Cars and Expedia Cars. We have had no issues with them and have been able to find the best prices available.

What to do in Europe for One Week: 20 European Vacation Ideas for Your Europe Trip

These are my best one week vacations in Europe. Taking a multi city European vacation can be a great way to experience several different cultures on one continent. I know that one week in Europe isn’t a lot of time, so I’ve picked cities that are either close in proximity or a quick and cheap flight between each other.

I’ve also tried to choose each Europe travel itinerary with a mix of classic sites and unique destinations. There are so many cool places to visit in Europe that are still undiscovered. Hopefully, some of these locations will be new to you and you’ll be able to discover a new European favorite!

Here's a Short Cut

1 | Amalfi Coast + Rome

2 | paris + london, 3 | ireland + iceland, 4 | heidelberg, germany + strasbourg, france, 5 | colmar, france + basel, switzerland, 6 | interlaken + lucerne, switzerland, 7 | lake como, italy + zermatt, switzerland, 8 | paris + normandy, 9 | iceland and the scottish highlands, 10 | venice and lake como, 11 | the ionian islands, greece, 12 | ireland + northern ireland, 13 | edinburgh + scottish highlands, 14 | colmar + strasbourg, 15 | loire valley + paris, 16 | london + cotswolds, 17 | cinque terre + florence, 18 | prague + vienna, 19 | budapest + bratislava, 20 | lucca + sardinia, 21 | lisbon + algarve, 22 | vienna + hallstatt + salzburg , 23 | croatia + montenegro, 24 | budapest + bratislava + vienna, practical tips for booking your trip.

Europe Itinerary- 20 Europe Trip Ideas

This is one of my very favorite European vacation destinations. There are hundreds of choices for stunning history and scenery when you visit Italy, but this Amalfi Coast and Rome itinerary gives you the best of both worlds. Rome is one of the top places to visit in Europe and offers history around every corner…literally, while on the Amalfi Coast you will be overwhelmed by breathtaking ocean views.

Spend several days in Rome, then head south to the Amalfi Coast via Naples and spend a few more relaxing on the beach and driving the coast. It’s one of the best European beach vacations you can take! Amalfi is also one of the most popular Europe vacation spots during the month of August, so you may want to take that into consideration when planning your trip.

Check out these other 5 amazing itineraries for Italy.  Italy is one of the best countries to visit in Europe due to its size and variety of landscapes, cultures, and attractions.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Rome

GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: Getting from Rome to Amalfi is easy. Take the train from Rome to Naples, from there take the bus to Sorrento. There are many tour buses that travel along the coast, or you can rent a car and do the driving yourself.

WHERE TO STAY Rome | Amalfi RESOURCES How to Spend One Day in Rome Family Guide to Rome How to Spend 2 Days in Naples How to Survive Train Travel in Italy The Best Places to Visit in Italy How to Spend 10 Days in Italy Tips for Renting a Car in Europe i Heart Italy

Europe Trip Itinerary

If you’re looking for a European vacation with a lot of history and class, this is it! I can’t even count the number of times that I have done the Paris/London combo. I’ve done it with kids, as a couple, as a girls’ trip, and as a field trip. No joke! And every time I go, it’s like completely different cities. You can follow completely different options for London and Paris itineraries and have an amazing time no matter what you choose. In my opinion, these are two of the best cities to visit in Europe as they offer a huge amount of culture, food, and entertainment bang for your buck!

When I plan our family trip to Europe each year, I make sure to always include both Paris and London. These are two of my favorite places in all of Europe. They are popular for good reason. Both Paris and London are so vast and diverse that you can have a new experience each time you visit. The best part about visiting these two cities is that they are very easy to travel between with the help of the Eurostar. It’s a quick journey from the heart of one city to the next that requires no airports, no flying, and no hassle. Note: You will need a   passport or visa   to travel between England and France and you will need to go through customs before boarding the Eurostar.

I’ve created an easy-to-use day-by-day itinerary for Paris and London so that you can show up and enjoy your trip. 

trip ideas to europe

GETTING THERE: Fly into London or Paris GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: Take the Eurostar

WHERE TO STAY Paris | London

RESOURCES Paris Walking Guide Paris with Kids Foods You Must Try in Paris Paris Neighborhood Guide How to Use the Paris Bike System London Travel Guide Perfect London Itinerary London with Kids Christmas in London Paddington’s Guide to London How to Use the Paris Bike System

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

If you’re looking for a European vacation with wild nature and rural beauty, this option is a winner. While both of these spectacular islands really deserve their own week (or weeks really), a trip combining the two is possible, thanks to affordable flights between Iceland and Ireland. A good route would be Reykjavik and the Golden Circle, combined with the west of Ireland including Killarney, the Ring of Kerry, and the Cliffs of Moher. These countries are some of the best places to go in Europe if you love majestic natural beauty.

GETTING THERE:  Fly into Iceland as its one of the cheapest ways to get to Europe. GETTING BETWEN COUNTRIES:  From Iceland , take a quick flight to Ireland. Dublin , Belfast , Cork, or Shannon Airports are usually where you’ll find the best deals.

WHERE TO STAY Ireland | Iceland

RESOURCES Iceland on a Budget Bucket List Things to do in Iceland Iconic Things to do in Dublin Day Trips from Dublin What to do in Killarney Perfect Ireland Itinerary Ireland with Kids Ireland Packing List

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

This one-week European itinerary includes two of my favorite cities in Europe! Heidelberg, Germany, known for its ancient castle and walkable downtown is a perfect companion to Strasbourg, France only an hour and a half away, in the Alsace region of France, known for its impressive cathedral and half-timber houses. These towns are particularly spectacular during the Christmas season and some of the best places to spend Christmas in Europe. This will be the best Europe itinerary for those looking to spend time in provincial looking towns!

GETTING THERE:  Fly into Frankfurt, Germany GETTING BETWEEN COUNTRIES:  Drive for 1.5 hours or take the train for 1.5 hours.

WHERE TO STAY Heidelberg | Strasbourg

RESOURCES Best European Christmas Markets European Christmas Market Treats What to do in Strasbourg What to do in Heidelberg, Germany What to do in Strasbourg, France

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

If you want to spend your Europen vacation wandering charming streets and feeling like you’re in a fairytale, this is it. Basel, Switzerland holds a special place in my heart and is often an overlooked town. Only a quick 45-minute train ride from the popular and iconic Colmar, France, Basel offers a unique culture that only a town on the border of three countries can. Basel is especially fun during Herbstmesse, the local Autumn Fair when the city literally turns into a fair! Combine these two beautiful cities for a one-of-a-kind holiday.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Basel or Zurich GETTING BETWEEN CITIES:  Drive 45 minutes or Train 30 minutes

WHERE TO STAY Colmar |  Basel

RESOURCES What to do in Basel Guide to Colmar, France

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

No European vacation list would be complete without including the unimaginable beauty of the Swiss Alps. Switzerland is a wonderland of natural beauty for the outdoor enthusiast or even anyone who has a remote interest in pretty scenery! It’s one of the best countries in Europe for those who love outdoor activity and natural beauty. It’s just jaw-droppingly gorgeous.

For such a small country, there is so much to see and with two of Switzerland most breathtaking areas just a few hours from each other, it’s worth visiting both of them. These areas offer pristine lakes, ancient gorges, colossal mountains, and a vast array of cultural activities.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Zurich, Switzerland GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: Train to Lucerne, Train to Interlaken

WHERE TO STAY Interlaken | Lucerne

RESOURCES Switzerland Itinerary Swiss Food Guide Switzerland Packing List 24 Hours in Zurich What to do in Interlaken What to do in Lucerne

One Week Europe Itinerary

If you’d like your Europe trip to have a good mix of beach and mountain time, this is the perfect combination. Lake Como is probably one of my top favorite places on the planet. It is totally magical and peaceful, and I’ve written about it multiple times and helped friends and family plan trips there. Don’t skip Lake Como on your next trip to Italy. One of my favorite parts of Lake Como is its proximity to the Swiss border. You can actually hike over the borer and into Switzerland! But if you’d rather not hike, hop in the car and take a trip to Zermatt, Switzerland, home of the famous towering mountain, Matterhorn.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Milan, Italy GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: Drive 3 hours to Zermatt or take a 4 hour Train ride from Milan

WHERE TO STAY Lake Como | Zermatt

RESOURCES Guide to Lake Como Boating Lake Como Guide to Zermatt Best Places to Visit in Italy How to Spend 10 Days in Italy i Heart Italy

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

This is a European vacation full of charm, but also a healthy dose of history and reality. A Paris-Normandy itinerary of Europe combines all the glamor and romance of the city of light with the charm, history, and beauty of Northern France. Spend several days in Paris, taking several day trips, including the impressive floating Mont Saint Michel. This area is one of the best places to visit in Europe for history lovers.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Paris GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: Drive 3 hours

WHERE TO STAY Paris | Normandy

RESOURCES Paris Itinerary Paris Walking Guide Paris with Kids Foods You Must Try in Paris Paris Neighbgorhood Guide Guide to Normandy Guide to Visiting Mont Saint Michel France with Kids

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

Two naturally and culturally beautiful countries are just a short and cheap flight apart and a great combination for a one-week European itinerary, although both countries could take weeks to explore on their own.  Spend a few days in Iceland, then take a cheap hopper flight and explore the mystical highlands of Scotland.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Reykjavik GETTING BETWEEN COUNTRIES: Fly into Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness, or Aberdeen

WHERE TO STAY Iceland | Scotland

RESOURCES Iceland on a Budget Scotland Itinerary What to do in Inverness What to do on the Isle of Skye Scotland Packing List

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

Some of my favorite Italian destinations, Venice and Lake Como, both built on water, are ideal locations for aquatic enthusiasts. Taking a ride on a gondola in Venice is one of the best things to do in Europe! Take the Vaporetto (water bus) in Venice, then take a short drive or train ride to Lake Como and enjoy boating and relaxing on the beach in one of the adorable villages lining the lake.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Venice or Milan GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: 3.5 hours by car or 10 hours by train

WHERE TO STAY Venice | Lake Como

RESOURCES Guide to Lake Como Boating Lake Como Surviving Train Travel in Italy Guide to Venice Best Places to Visit in Italy How to Spend 10 Days in Italy i Heart Italy

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

If you’re interested in cheap Europe trips, the gorgeous Ionian islands of Greece are one of the best-kept secrets in Europe. Naturally and culturally diverse, affordable, and downright beautiful, Kefalonia and Corfu make great choices for one week in Europe.

Explore ancient ruins, relax on pristine beaches with locals, and dine, affordably, like a Greek god. If you’re travelling Europe on a budget, this is a great option and Greece is one of the best places to visit in Europe in summer if you’re looking for gorgeous beaches at affordable prices.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Kefalonia from London on Ryanair GETTING BETWEEN ISLANDS: Take a ferry between the Ionian Islands from Greek Ferries

WHERE TO STAY Kefalonia | Corfu

RESOURCES Guide to Kefalonia Greece The Ionian Islands The Best Beaches on Corfu What to Wear in Greece Guide to Athens

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

Two countries on one island? Yep! Take a visit to Ireland AND Northern Ireland. Two countries that are very similar, but also very different. Explore the entire island with this perfect itinerary.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Dublin or any airport in Ireland GETTING BETWEEN COUNTRIES: Rent a Car. Driving in Ireland can be tricky and slow, but worth the views and the adventure.

WHERE TO STAY Ireland | Northern Ireland

RESOURCES The Best Places to Visit in Ireland Perfect Ireland Itinerary Ireland with Kids What to do in Killarney Scotland and Ireland Itinerary Ireland Packing List

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

Scotland is one country that should really be given an entire week. You could definitely say that about any destination, but for a relatively small country, but it has so much to offer that you could spend years here and not see it all.

For one week in Scotland, I recommend visiting Edinburgh and the Scottish Highlands, including the Isle of Skye. Read here for an entire Scotland Itinerary, here for Edinburgh , here for Inverness and the Highlands , and here for the Isle of Skye.

GETTING THERE:  Flying into Edinburgh is usually the cheapest option. GETTING BETWEN AREAS:  It’s best to rent a car or hire a driver or tour company. Be sure to read my guide to driving in Scotland.  

WHERE TO STAY Ediburgh | Inverness | Isle of Skye

RESOURCES Perfect Scotland Itinerary What to do in Edinburgh What to do in Inverness What to do on the Isle of Skye Scotland Packing List

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

What could be more charming than a week spent in these “poor provincial towns.” Ok, so they’re definitely not poor or provincial, but you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into Belle’s hometown from Beauty and the Beast .

The ancient half-timber homes built along scenic rivers provide a feast for the eyes, while the patisseries, boulangeries, shops, and restaurants provide a feast for the tongue. Split your time between these two idyllic towns and enjoy a peaceful trip back in time.

If you visit Colmar or Strasbourg during Christmas, these towns will be even more magical! Strasbourg is known as “The Capital of Christmas” and both towns have incredible Christmas markets and decorations!

GETTING THERE:  Fly into Zurich GETTING BETWEEN COUNTRIES:  30 minutes by train or 1 hour by car

WHERE TO STAY Colmar | Strasbourg

RESOURCES 24 Hours in Zurich Guide to Colmar Guide to Strasbourg The Most Magical European Christmas Markets Must-Have European Christmas Market Treats 

One Week Europe Trip Itinerary

Divide your time between the ancient and modern city of light and the historic Loire Valley , home to magnificent palaces, stunning gardens, and green pastures. This one-week itinerary is the perfect balance between city and country life and will provide you with a mix of excitement, peace, and romance. It can be hard to squeeze everything you want into one week European itineraries, but this is a must!

Be sure to map out the castles and palaces you want to see along the way. Our favorite is Chenonceau ! Don’t miss it!

GETTING THERE: Fly into Paris GETTING AROUND:  Rent a car and drive two hours to the Loire Valley

WHERE TO STAY Loire Valley | Paris

RESOURCES Walking Guide to Paris Paris with Kids Day Trips from Paris Foods You Must Try in Paris Guide to the Loire Valley 15 Affordable Castles You Can Stay In

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

This London and Cotswolds Itinerary provides the best of both British worlds, encompassing both the hustle and bustle of one of the world’s oldest and largest cities and the peace and tranquility of the quaint cottage speckled Cotswolds.

As much as I love London (it’s my favorite city), I do get tired of the crowds and the constant noise. It is so refreshing to get into the countryside and have a change of scenery during your time in London. The Cotswolds are a fairytale-like dream trip. Be sure to grab cream tea every chance you get!

GETTING THERE: Fly into one of three London Airports GETTING AROUND: Rent a car and explore the whole Cotswolds area

WHERE TO STAY London | Cotswolds

RESOURCES London Travel Guide Complete Guide to London Perfect London Itinerary London with Kids Paddington’s Guide to London Christmas in London Guide to the Cotswolds

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

I call this itinerary the best of Northern Italy. Italy is huge and has so much to offer geographically and culturally, but one of my favorite parts of Italy is the train system. The trains in Italy allow for easy access to most major sites, but it can be slightly confusing, so be sure to read this guide to train travel in Italy before you go. Getting between Florence and Cinque Terre is simple with the right knowledge.

The great thing about this itinerary is that you will get to see a big city full of culture, history, and art, and also spend time swimming at the beach and on a boat soaking up rays in in the Liguerian Sea. Read here for Florence, here for Cinque Terre, here for Trains in Italy.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Florence GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: Two hours by train

WHERE TO STAY Cinque Terre | Florence

RESOURCES Guide to Cinque Terre Guide to Florence How to Survive Train Travel in Italy Best Places to Visit in Italy How to Spend 10 Days in Italy

Europe Itinerary

I think Prague and Vienna might be some of the most underrated cities in Europe, and they are worth dedicating an entire week to. Stunning architecture, delicious cuisine, and cultural activities abound in these cities that are just a few hours apart.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Vienna or Prague GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: 3-hour drive or 4-hour train ride

WHERE TO STAY Prague | Vienna

RESOURCES One Day in Prague What to do in Vienna

One Week European Itinerary

If you’re looking for cheap European vacations, the farther east you go, the cheaper it generally gets. These are two cities that had never really been on my bucket list, and to be honest, I had never even heard of Bratislava, which is in Slovakia by the way! Both cities are charming and culturally rich. They are especially festive and beautiful around Christmas time.

Bratislava is on the way between Budapest and Vienna (you can even cycle between Budapest and Vienna ) and Budapest and Prague, so if you’re thinking of doing a combination of any of those cities, it’s a great stop.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Budapest GETTING BETWEEN CITIES: 2 hours by car, 2.5 hours by train

WHERE TO STAY Budapest | Bratislava

RESOURCES What to do in Budapest European Christmas Markets What to do in Bratislava

Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

These incredible destinations in Italy are not well known, but that is part of the appeal. I would say they are a good option for a cheaper and less crowded alternative to the  Florence and Cinque Terre itinerary.

Lucca is a walled city in Tuscany offering stunning architecture and culture with great family fun activities such as riding bikes along the top of the medieval wall around the city. Sardinia is a heavenly island, just a ferry ride away full of breathtaking beaches, delicious food, and friendly locals. Known as one of the five blue zones in the world- places in the world where people live longer and healthier than anywhere else on earth-Sardinia will make you feel younger and more alive just by visiting.

GETTING THERE: Fly into Rome or Florence GETTING BETWEEN DESTINATIONS: Take a Ferry from Civitavecchia to Olbia

WHERE TO STAY Lucca | Sardinia

RESOURCES One Day in Rome What to do in Lucca Sardinia Best Places to Visit in Italy How to Spend 10 Days in Italy What to Wear in Italy

trip ideas to europe

Portugal is a beautiful country full of diverse landscapes, amazing beaches, and cultural city centers. Lisbon is a stunning city and the Algarve region in the south of Portugal offers sunny beaches with world-famous surfing. There are some really cheap flights to Lisbon from the US right now and you can either drive, train, bus, or fly to the Algarve easily. As a southern European country, Portugal is a great choice for a winter destination. We were there last January and could still get in the water. There are many towns to choose from in the Algarve and they are all equally unique and beautiful. 

GETTING THERE: Fly into Lisbon GETTING BETWEEN DESTINATIONS: Take a plane, car, or bus to the Algarve.

The Perfect Portugal Itinerary

trip ideas to europe

This one week in Europe spent in Austria is a dream. Combining the culture of Vienna and Salzburg with the picturesque feel of Hallstatt, it’s sure to satisfy any traveler. In my opinion, this is a great winter destination if you don’t mind the cold. Vienna and Salzburg have several amazing Christmas markets and Hallstatt is simply a dream to see in the snow! 

GETTING THERE: Fly into Vienna GETTING BETWEEN DESTINATIONS: Take a train to Salzburg (2.5 hours). A great way to see Hallstatt is to take a day trip from Salzburg.

Hallstatt Day Trip

European Christmas Markets

Christmas Market Treats

trip ideas to europe

If you’re into coastal towns, walled cities, and breathtaking scenery, this combination is for you. The Dalmation Coast is absolutely stunning. The bordering country of Montenegro is really the hidden gem of Europe, offering the same draw as Croatia, but with far fewer tourists. I recommend going during shoulder season (April-May or September-October) to be able to enjoy warmer weather with fewer crowds. 

GETTING THERE: Fly into Dubrovnik, Croatia  GETTING BETWEEN DESTINATIONS:  Take a Day Trip to Montenegro

trip ideas to europe

Two of the most underrated cities in Europe if you ask me, Budapest and Bratislava are both cities that offer an amazing array of culture and also incredible food. If you’re up for the cold weather, these cities all have incredible Christmas markets and stunning decorations around the holidays. These cities are also all connected by rail so you can easily navigate between them. 

GETTING THERE: Fly into Vienna or Budapest GETTING BETWEEN DESTINATIONS: Take the train between each city. Bratislava would be a good day trip from Vienna.

25 | Berlin + Prague

trip ideas to europe

If you love history and architecture, then these two cities will captivate you! Split your time between the two, rent a car and take a road trip between them to enjoy some beautiful scenery. 

GETTING THERE: Fly into either Berlin or Prague, whichever airport is cheaper.  GETTING BETWEEN DESTINATIONS: Rent a car and take a road trip between Berlin and Prague.

Whichever Europe Itinerary you choose, you’re guaranteed to love it. You can definitely see so much of Europe in a week and you really can’t go wrong with any of these choices. Just remember to relax and enjoy and also remember that this probably won’t be the last Europe trip of your lifetime.

Not the Trip You Need?

Not exactly the trip you’re looking for? Don’t worry, I also offer custom trip planning by request for many destinations! Learn more here.

Book Your Flight s and Car Find a budget airlines by using  Skyscanner . This is my favorite way to search for flights because they crawl websites and airlines around the globe, so you always know you’re getting the best deal. Learn more tips for finding the best flight deals here. For cars, I like to use Rental Cars because they have good filters and its easy to search for multiple companies.

Book Your Accommodation My preferred way to stay around the world is VRBO . I find it usually gives you a unique local experience in any destination. If you want to stay in a hotel, use  Booking , as it consistently gives the cheapest rates for guesthouses and hotels. I use them both all the time.

Always Get Travel Insurance Travel insurance protects you and your family against illness, injury, theft, and cancellations. It’s peace of mind in case anything goes wrong. I never travel without it. I’ve been using World Nomads for the last few years and love how easy it is to use. I have also used Allianz . Compare rates to see which is best for the coverage you need.

Looking for ways to save money on travel? Check out my  resource page  for the companies I use for traveling! I share everything I use to save me time and money.

trip ideas to europe

Wanderlust Crew

9 thoughts on “ 20 one-week europe trip itinerary ideas ”.

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Hi there, My husband and I will be celebrating our 20th anniversary next March and would love to go somewhere in Europe for a week. I have only been to Italy (over 20 years ago) and he’s never been. I’m a bit overwhelmed by even trying to figure out where to go. Can you help? Thanks! Hannah

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Hi Hannah. I can definitely help! I’ve got several Italy Itinerary ideas for Italy here: https://wanderlustcrew.com/10-days-in-italy/ I also do custom trip planning, specifically for Italy, if you’re interested in that, you can find more info here: https://wanderlustcrew.com/custom-travel-planning/ Italy will be so much fun! One of my favorite places on earth! xo Vanessa

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Very helpful! Thank you. We are planning a one year stay & this helped with our itinerary tremendously.

Oh that sounds amazing! You’ll see so much!

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Great ideas! We hope we’ll be able to travel to Europe again soon!

Thanks so much! Me too! Going as soon as it’s safe!!

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Very good these tips I was even thinking about taking a vacation for a few days, thank you

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Finding the Universe

Travel tales, photography and a dash of humor

2 Week Europe Itinerary - Barcelona Parc Guell Sunrise

2 Weeks in Europe – The Perfect Europe Itinerary

Last updated: January 28, 2024 . Written by Laurence Norah - 30 Comments

Are you visiting Europe and looking for the perfect itinerary? Well, you’re in the right place! We’ve travelled extensively in Europe, and based on our experiences, we’ve put together a detailed 2 week Europe itinerary to help you plan.

This Europe itinerary will take you to many of the highlights that we think first time visitors to Europe will want to see and explore for themselves. These include many of our favourite destinations that we’ve visited multiple times over.

This itinerary is aimed at those of you visiting Europe for the first time, or those of you looking for an easy itinerary to follow that covers some of the major highlights of Western Europe. It’s not overly rushed as we think you will get more from your experience if you focus on a few major locations rather than trying to see everything in one go.

The trip as outlined is for 14 days in Europe, but you could make it longer or shorter depending on how much time you have. For example, with 10 days in Europe, you could clip off a day or two in some of the cities, and maybe even skip one of the cities to make it a more comfortable experience.

As well as the itinerary, we’re also going to share everything you need to know to help you plan the perfect European trip. Tips about currency, what to pack, where to stay, how to get around and other considerations.

Hopefully this guide will give you everything you need to know to plan your own perfect European adventure, and of course, we’re always happy to answer your questions in the comments. Now, let’s get started!

2 Week Europe Itinerary

This two week itinerary has you visiting four European countries and five cities. We think these cover some of the top highlights of Europe.

The destinations on this itinerary are all cities, so this trip is aimed more towards those of you looking to explore the cities, which are all full of cultural highlights, fantastic restaurants, and plenty of photo-worthy sights!

But if have your eye more on smaller towns, secondary cities, and rural locations, this might not be the best itinerary for you.

If you’d prefer to focus on one country, take a look at our two week UK itinerary , and our 10 day Italy itinerary for some inspiration.

Tower Bridge London

Days 1 – 3: London

We’re going to start your European adventure with 3 days in London . London makes a great starting point for your European itinerary. It has a number of international airports to choose from, so getting here is easy, and there are a wealth of sights and cultural attractions to immerse yourself in. I lived in London for a number of years, and it’s still one of my favourite cities in the world.

If this is your first overseas trip and you are coming from an English speaking country, London is a good place to ease yourself into the experience. You can acclimate yourself to the time difference and get used to travelling in a new country, without having a language barrier to work with as well.

We think 3 days is a good amount of time to spend basing yourself in London. We’d suggest spending at least two days exploring the capital, and perhaps one day trip outside of London. This might look as follows.

On your first day in London, we’d suggest seeing the major sights around Westminster. This includes the Houses of Parliament , Westminster Abbey , Trafalgar Square, Covent Garden, the Churchill War Rooms , Buckingham Palace and the London Eye .

House2Bof2BParliament2Bexterior_by_Laurence2BNorah255B3255D

On your second day, which will be a full day, we’d suggest starting at the Tower of London . Get here when it opens to avoid the crowds if you can. Included on the London Pass , or y ou can buy a ticket online in advance here . Using our link saves you some money on the adult admission price for the Tower of London, meaning these discounted Tower of London tickets are some of the best value we’re aware of.

We also recommend checking prices via GetYourGuide here , and on the official website  here , as pricing can vary. You can also see opening times and other information for your visit on the official site.

Once you are done with the Tower of London, you can see more sites in the area like Tower Bridge , Borough Market (a London Harry Potter filming location ), St. Paul’s Cathedral , the Tate Modern , Shakespeare’s Globe and the Shard .

You certainly won’t run out of things to occupy your time! For some more inspiration, see our guides for 2 days in London and 3 days in London . We also recommend picking up a two day London Pass to save money on your sightseeing while in London. You can do that here .

On your third day in the UK, we recommend taking a day trip out of the city. This could be to somewhere like Windsor Castle or Hampton Court Palace , neither of which are too far.

If you really want to get out a bit further, we can recommend perhaps taking a trip to Stonehenge, the Cotswolds, Bath or Oxford. There are a variety of companies who offer easy day trips from London which include a number of these highlights like this or this , or you could do it yourself.

2 weeks in Europe - Cotswolds UK

See our guide to taking a day trip to Stonehenge and a day trip to Oxford for some inspiration. If you’re a Harry Potter fan, then you may instead consider a trip out to the Harry Potter Studios where the films were made.

Of course, you will want to adjust this schedule depending on when you arrive and depart London. Our suggestion would be to take the day trip on your last day, overnight in London, and then take an early morning train to Paris.

Whilst you’re in London, we recommend getting around by public transport. It’s the most cost effective and also generally the most efficient way to get around. See our guide to public transport in London for some tips, as well as our overview of how to pay for public transport in London .

If you enjoy walking tours, there’s no shortage of options to choose from in the city. We love taking a walking tour when we first arrive in a new city – it can be a good way to get familiar with the city, plus you can ask your guide for local tips on places to eat and less well-known attractions.

If you do decide to take a walking tour, we suggest Take Walks for small group tour (tours range in length from a couple of hours to full day tours), and Context for private tours. We’d specifically recommend this full day walking tour with Take Walks as a possible option to consider.

You’ll most likely be arriving into London by plane, into one of London’s major international airports. London actually has six airports, but you’re most likely to land in either Gatwick or Heathrow. Whichever one you do land at, we have a guide to how to get from the airport to London .

Well, that’s your time in London covered. Now we’ll suggest a few places for you to stay, before giving you some tips on getting from Paris to London.

Where to stay in London

Some of our favourite hotels, from budget to luxury, in London are as follows:

  • The Walrus Bar and Hostel  – A well reviewed centrally located hostel
  • The Z hotel in Shoreditch – Excellent value in a popular part of London with great dining options
  • Point A Hotel – We’ve stayed here; the rooms are tiny but clean and it’s a great budget option.
  • Lime Tree Hotel – A well reviewed boutique hotel, around nine minutes walk from London Victoria
  • The  Resident Victoria Hotel – A well reviewed and centrally located hotel offering excellent value for money. The room we stayed in was quite compact, but it had everything we needed
  • The Savoy  – true luxury as close to the city centre as you can get!

If you prefer an apartment, then we recommend Plum Guide .

Plum Guide doesn’t have quite so many choices as some other UK based websites , but they carefully curate their listings so their options tend to be of a very high quality whilst still being available at a range of price points. We’ve used them on a number of trips and always had a great experience. See their listings for London here .

If you can’t find what you want on Plum Guide or you want some new options to try out, we wrote a whole post on the best alternatives to AirBnB which you should check out!

How to get to Paris from London

We’d recommend taking the Eurostar train service from London to Paris. This departs multiple times a day, and the journey takes 2 hours and 16 minutes.

This is a lot quicker than flying, especially once you consider you’ll have to get to and from the airport on either end. The Eurostar will take you directly to Gare Du Nord. Get your tickets for that journey in advance here .

We also have a guide to getting from London to Paris which lists all the options you have.

trip ideas to europe

Days 4 – 6: Paris

Welcome to Paris – the city of lights and love! We’re going to suggest three full days exploring Paris, as the city has so much to offer.

After you’ve dropped your bags off at your hotel (or at a luggage storage location ), it’s time to start sightseeing. As with London, the plan is to see the major sights in the city.

We’re going to start off with the Eiffel Tower . This is without doubt Paris’s most famous landmark, and a must-visit when you come to Paris. You can either enjoy the views from below or head up inside the tower to one of the various stages.

2 weeks in Europe - Eiffel Tower

If you do decide to go up the Eiffel Tower, we highly recommend you book your tickets in advance. The best place to do this is on the official website . There are often huge lines for tickets on site, and you don’t want to waste time unnecessarily. For a lot more tips for your visit, see our complete guide to visiting the Eiffel Tower .

From the Eiffel Tower, we suggest taking a cruise on the River Seine , which will let you see many of the highlights of the city from the river. You can book a discounted Seine River cruise which departs from near the Eiffel Tower with our link .

Alternatively, you might prefer to do an evening Seine River dinner cruise , in which case this will happen later.

After the cruise, you might consider a walking tour of Paris or a Hop on Hop off bus trip. Alternatively, consider visiting the Musee d’Orsay .

On your second day in Paris, we suggest you start bright and early with a visit to spectacular Sainte Chapelle , one of Paris’s prettiest churches. The stained-glass windows here have to be seen to be believed. Just be sure to turn up at or just before opening time, as the lines get very busy.

From here, you can pop across to Notre Dame if you want. Due to the fire in 2019 this is undergoing significant reconstruction work, so do keep that in mind. From Notre Dame, head across to the Louvre , one of the most famous art museums in the world.

There’s a huge amount to see here, including highlights such as the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo. You could spend a whole day here, but you may want to limit yourself to 2 – 3 hours so you can see more of the city! Book your tickets online in advance here .

trip ideas to europe

From the Louvre, if you have time, you might consider sneaking in a wine tasting session , or going for afternoon tea in Paris . From here, it’s time to head up the most famous shopping street in Paris, the Champs Elysees, where you’ll finish up at the Arc de Triomphe .

This massive archway stands in memory of those who died in the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. The view from the top is one of our favourite views in Paris, so do head to the top if you have the time.

For your final day in Paris, our suggestion is that you head out to Versailles . This was the palace of French royalty, and is a stunning place to visit. You can book your tickets for Versailles in advance here .

Between exploring the palace and the extensive gardens, there is more than enough to do here to fill from half a day to a full day, which is why we suggest allocating most of the day to it. Then perhaps plan a nice dinner or show for your final evening.

We can recommend the evening show at the Moulin Rouge, and you can read about our experience at the Moulin Rouge here , and book tickets here .

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And that’s all your sightseeing for your time in Paris on our European itinerary! For more detailed inspiration for your time in Paris, see our itinerary for 3 days in Paris and 2 days in Paris , which should give you lots more ideas.

For your visit in Paris, we recommend either the Paris Pass , or the Paris Museum Pass . The former includes a number of activities like the hop on hop off bus tour, guided Eiffel Tower climb, and Seine River cruise, as well as all the museums and sights included on the Paris Museum Pass. These both include most of the attractions we’ve listed, including Versailles.

You can buy the Paris Pass on the official site here , and the Paris Museum Pass here .

Again, for those of you who enjoy walking tours, we recommend Take Walks and Context . The former offer small group walking tours, whilst the latter primarily focus on private tours. We’ve taken tours with both companies in cities around the world and are always happy to recommend them.

As an example tour, check out this full day Paris tour , which includes a Skip the Line Louvre Tour, Eiffel Tower, Montmartre & Seine River Cruise.

As with London, the easiest way to get around Paris is to take public transport. Specifically, the Metro is likely going to be the fastest and most cost-effective way to get around.

We have a full guide to how to get around Paris , which should help you plan your transport in the city.

Now, we’re going to share some tips on where to stay in Paris, as well as how to get to the next city on your itinerary of Europe – Barcelona.

Where to stay in Paris

Our itinerary has you spending 2 nights in Paris, arriving by train on the morning of the first day, and departing either by plane on the evening of the third day. We suggest the following options for accommodation in Paris.

  • 3 Ducks Hostel .  A well-rated boutique hostel just 2 minutes from the nearest metro and a 22 minute walk to the Eiffel Tower
  • Hotel Dress Code & Spa , A highly reviewed centrally located 4 star hotel
  • Hotel Ekta Champs Elysees – a well rated 3* hotel just off the Champs Elysees
  • Hôtel Eiffel Turenne , A well rated 3* hotel within a ten minute walk of the Eiffel Tower
  • Ateliers de Montmartre , An apartment in Montmartre with views of the Sacre Coeur
  • Vintage Paris Gare du Nord by Hiphophostels , A hostel located just next to Paris Gare du Nord
  • George V – A fabulous centrally located 5* hotel, an excellent luxury pick

We’ve also stayed in Paris with Plum Guide in a gorgeous apartment with Eiffel Tower views. See their listings for Paris here .

Plum Guide Review Paris The Tannery

How to get from Paris to Barcelona

You have two main options for travelling from Paris to Barcelona, you can take the train, or you can fly.

There used to be a direct night train from Paris to Barcelona, but this was discontinued in 2013. So you can take a train in the daytime (around 6.5 hours journey time) or you can travel by a slower overnight train (around 13 hours).

We think flying is likely going to be the easiest option. There are a number of direct evening flights from Paris to Barcelona, taking just under two hours. Just try to book a flight from Paris Orly or Paris Charles de Gaulle. Many budget airlines operate from Paris Beauvais, which is quite a long way outside the city, and requires a lengthy coach journey.

Check flight times and prices online here . If you’d prefer to take the train, you can check train times and prices here .

trip ideas to europe

Days 7- 9: Barcelona

It’s time for the third city on your European adventure – Barcelona! Barcelona is full of incredible sights, including architectural gems from Antoni Gaudi, a gothic city center, and even a beach!

Again, we think you’ll need 3 days to do justice to all the sights in Barcelona. We’re also going to suggest a day trip from the city to explore some of the surrounding highlights. Here’s how your three days in Barcelona might look.

We suggest starting your first day with a trip to the Sagrada Familia . This was master architect Antoni Gaudi’s final work, and whilst construction was started in 1882, he didn’t live to see it completed. It’s getting there now, but still has some way to go!

The Sagrada Familia is a very popular attraction and they operate a timed entry system. It’s vital that you reserve your timeslot in advance, as otherwise you will end up in a very long queue, and at busy times of year, tickets sell out far in advance. You can reserve your tickets online here .

We also have a detailed guide to visiting the Sagrada Familia which we recommend reading in advance of your visit.

Barcelona Sagrada Familia Interior

After spending a couple of hours at the Sagrada Familia, we recommend heading across to the nearby Recinte Modernista Sant Pau , a beautiful Art Nouveau style hospital building which has UNESCO world heritage status.

After the Recinte Modernista Sant Pau, continue on to Park Güell . This is a large public park which was also designed by Anton Gaudi, and there’s a lot to see here. Again, this is a popular spot with timed entry, and we highly advise booking this online in advance here .

Near Park Güell is the Gaudi Experience , where you can learn a bit about the man behind some of the wonderful architecture you have been experiencing. You can get tickets for that here if you are interested.

From the Gaudi Experience, you have a few options depending on your interest. If you are using the hop on hop off bus to travel around Barcelona (included on the Go Barcelona Pass ), it continues from Park Guell on to a number of other attractions.

These include the hill top fairground Tibidabo , the stunning Monastery of Pedralbes , and Camp Nou , the home of Barcelona’s football club.

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We’re sure one or more of those will be of interest!

For your second day in Barcelona, we suggest starting with a visit to some of Gaudi’s famous houses near the city centre – Casa Batlló , and Casa Milá . These are popular, so try to get here by opening time so as not to have to queue for too long.

Then, continue your day by exploring the oldest part of Barcelona – the Gothic Quarter. Here you can visit the incredible Barcelona Cathedral , the UNESCO world heritage listed Palau de la Musica Catalana , and the Picasso Museum .

For your third day, you could continue to explore Barcelona. You could visit the beach, Barcelona Zoo , the attractions on Montjuic Hill – the list goes on! See our 3 day Barcelona itinerary for more ideas.

However, we think you might enjoy heading out of the city on a day trip to explore a bit of Catalonia, the region which Barcelona is capital of.

A popular day trip from Barcelona is a visit to Girona and Figueres, two lovely towns which are rich in history. Girona is home to stunning medieval architecture, and Figueres is known as the birthplace of surrealist artist Salvador Dali .

You can see our guide to visiting Girona and Figueres in a day here . In terms of tours, we suggest this full day tour which includes Girona and the coast, or this full day tour which includes Girona and time to visit the Dali Museum in Figueres.

Girona medieval city walls

The other popular option is to visit the spectacular monastery and mountains of Montserrat, around an hour from Barcelona. You can see our guide to visiting Montserrat here for all the tips you need to do that.

Of course, there are lots of other tour options. You could go hot air ballooning , visit the Vall de Nuria , go skiing (if you visit in winter), go hiking in La Garrotxa , visit the Montserrat monastery – the list goes on!

That just about wraps up our suggestions for what to see and do with your three days in Barcelona.

To further help you with your planning for Barcelona, we have some guides we think you’ll find useful. See our itinerary for 3 days in Barcelona , our guide to Gaudi sites in Barcelona , and our favourite photography locations in Barcelona to get you started.

There are a few city passes for Barcelona, including the Barcelona City Pass , the  Barcelona Card , and the  Go Barcelona Pass . These work slightly differently, and so one or the other might be better for you. See our full break down and review of all the passes in our comparison of the Barcelona Discount Passes .

For most visitors we think the Go Barcelona Pass will offer the best value as it includes the main attractions like the Sagrada Familia, Park Guell and hop on hop off bus tour. We also have a full review of the Go Barcelona Pass to help you decide if it’s going to save you some money.

Finally, it’s worth bearing in mind that Barcelona has a bit of a poor reputation when it comes to petty crime, specifically around pick pockets, and items like phones being swiped off cafe tables. We have not personally experienced this, but have heard firsthand accounts from readers and friends who have.

We have more on this in our section below with tips for safety when travelling in Europe, but just try to keep your valuables out of sight all the time, ideally in zipped and secured pockets.

Now, let’s look at some options for where to stay in Barcelona, before planning how to get to the next city in your Europe itinerary.

Where to Stay in Barcelona

Here are a few options for your stay in Barcelona across a variety of price points, including a number of hotels we’ve personally stayed in and can recommend.

  • Hotel Barcelona Catedral – A 4* property in Barcelona in the heart of the Gothic Quarter. We’ve stayed here, and enjoyed the roof top pool and incredible central location.
  • Hostel One Ramblas – A very well reviewed and very central hostel option
  • The 8 Boutique B&B – A highly rated and well located bed and breakfast
  • Duquesa de Cardona – A 4* property on the waterfront with a roof top bar
  • Leonardo Hotel Barcelona Las Ramblas – Part of the good value Leonardo chain, this 3* property is a few moments from Las Ramblas. We enjoyed our stay here, and the breakfast in particular was excellent.
  • Ohla Barcelona – A very central 5* property with a roof top pool and excellent reviews.

How to Get from Barcelona to Venice

From Barcelona, the next stop on the trip will be Venice, Italy. If you are travelling for less than two weeks, you might want to skip Venice, and head straight to the last city on this itinerary, but for two weeks in Europe, we think Venice is a great addition.

The main option you have for getting from Barcelona to Rome is to fly. Of course, you could take the train, but as the average journey is around 22 hours and requires a number of changes, we’d suggest a flight is going to make more sense.

A direct flight from Barcelona to Rome is just under 2 hours. You can either go on your evening of your final day in Barcelona or the morning of the following day, it’s up to you. We think travelling in the evening makes more sense so you don’t lose time sightseeing in the morning.

Check times and book your flights here .

Casa Batllo Barcelona

Days 10 – 11: Venice

You’ve arrived in the fourth and final country of your 2-week European itinerary – Italy! Home to amazing gelato , delicious coffee , and oodles of history.

We’re going to visit two cities in Italy on your European itinerary, both of which are favourites with visitors to Italy – us included! Of course, it’s hard to pick a second city in Italy from all the amazing options, but we think Venice is a must. Naturally, this will be followed by Rome.

We’ve put Venice ahead of Rome for the simple reason that it’s relatively easy to fly to Venice from the rest of Europe, but a little bit harder to fly onwards from Venice to international destinations. Ending the itinerary in Rome should make it easier for you to travel onwards to international destinations.

Anyway, we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

The next city on your European adventure is the beautiful city of Venice. This car-free city is famous for being built across a number of islands, with waterways and boats replacing roads and cars.

Venice is definitely one of our favourite cities in Europe, and was where we had our wedding ceremony with friends and family. So it’s definitely a city that is close to our hearts.

We’re going to recommend you spend two days in Venice. Many people visit the city for a day, which is do-able of course, but to really get a feel for Venice, we think you’ll enjoy spending two days here.

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Our recommendation for your two days in Venice is to spend the first day exploring the highlights of the city – places like St. Mark’s Square, the Doge’s Palace and the Rialto Bridge. Take a Gondola ride , listen to musicians playing in the cafes, and get lost down the countless winding alleyways.

For your second day, we recommend taking a boat out to one of the islands around Venice, like Murano or Burano. These are much quieter with a different vibe to Venice itself, and we think you’ll enjoy this as a way to finish off your grand European adventure.

For more inspiration on what to do in Venice, see our guide to spending a day in Venice . We also recommend reading our guide to visiting the Doge’s Palace and St. Mark’s Basilica .

Of course, if you would prefer to visit another city in Italy other than Venice, you could spend these two days in any number of destinations, including the Amalfi Coast, Cinque Terre, Naples or Florence . You could even do a one day stopover in Florence on your way to Rome, rather than spending the two days in Venice. It’s entirely up to you, and depends on the flights you can find.

Where to Stay in Venice

Venice has a great many options for accommodation. Just be aware that many of the properties are old (as is much of the city!), and so elevators are not always standard. In addition, there are no vehicles allowed, so to get to your hotel from the train station you’ll need to take a ferry boat, water taxi, or walk.

  • Casa Cosmo – a great value well rated budget option, five minutes walk from St. Mark’s Square and the Rialto Bridge. Rooms are air conditioned and are en-suite
  • B&B Bloom Settimo Cielo – A highly rated and good value B&B breakfast, 10 minutes from St. Mark’s Square and the Rialto Bridge. Individually designed rooms have en-suite facilities, and there’s a rooftop terrace
  • Leon Bianco on the Grand Canal – this historic property with Grand Canal views is where we stayed for our wedding ceremony in Venice. The views are fantastic, and it’s amazing value for the location
  • Hotel Saturnia & International – a lovely 4* hotel just moments from Saint Mark’s Square, this turn of the century hotel offers en-suite rooms, a terrace with views, and an on-site restaurant.
  • The Gritti Palace – a 5* luxury property right on St. Mark’s Square – this is the place you stay if you want to be in the middle of everything

How to Get from Venice to Rome

The best way to get from Venice to Rome is to take the train.

As always, you’ll get the best prices if you book your tickets in advance. You can check train times, prices, and book online here .

There are also flights, but by the time you have gotten to the airport, checked in, and then collected your baggage at the other end and gotten from Rome airport to the city center, you might as well have taken the train!

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Days 12 – 14: Rome

Your next stop in Italy, and the last stop on your Europe itinerary, is the Italian capital of Rome. Founded almost 3,000 years ago, Rome is absolutely stuffed full of historical wonders and attractions.

We think that to do Rome justice, you should spend three days here. Here’s how those days might look.

Start your first day with a visit to the Colosseum . Built during the height of the Roman Empire, and nearly 2,000 years old, this is the largest amphitheatre in the world. It’s a must when in Rome.

Visiting the Colosseum Rome

Do be aware that like many of the other popular attractions in our itinerary, the Colosseum operates a timeslot system for entry, and you absolutely need to book in advance. See our complete guide to visiting the Colosseum for more on that.

After the Colosseum, we recommend visiting the Roman Forum, which is next to the Colosseum, and usually included on the Colosseum entry ticket. This was the heart of the Roman Empire, and is also a must when visiting Rome.

You’ll likely already be half way through your first day already. We suggest spending the rest of the day exploring the historic city center, with attractions like the Spanish Steps, Pantheon, and Trevi Fountain.

For your second day in Rome, we recommend you head to the Vatican City. This is a city-state inside Rome itself, and is home to the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica. The Vatican Museums are home to world renowned works of art as well as the Sistine Chapel – a masterpiece of Renaissance art.

Both these attractions are very popular, and you will want to plan in advance to ensure you don’t waste time standing in line if you are visiting at a busy time of year. You have a few options.

First, you can take a guided tour which includes the Vatican and St. Peter’s Basilica like this one .

This will give you loads of information about what you are seeing and ensure you don’t waste time standing in line.

Another option is to invest in a pass which includes skip the line entry or a tour of these attractions. We would suggest looking at the Rome Tourist Card which includes skip the line access to the Vatican, Colosseum, and St. Peter’s Basilica.

You can also consider the Omnia Vatican and Rome Card , although this doesn’t currently include skip the line access to St. Peter’s Bascilica.

Finally, you can book individual tickets here for the Vatican via their official website (or here on GetYourGuide , which is easier to use in our experience).

As of early 2023 St Peter’s Basilica doesn’t actually have an entry fee, but nor does it have skip the line tickets (skip the line tickets used to be an option and we hope they come back soon!). So the best option if you want to skip the line is to invest either in a tour or a pass which includes a tour like the Rome Tourist Card .

You can also book Vatican tickets here , using our link gives you 5% off their usual price for Vatican tickets. It’s a little more expensive than the official website but somewhat more user friendly in our experience.

Exit Stairway Vatican Museums Rome_by_Laurence Norah (3)

We recommend allocating at least half a day to explore the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica.

For lots more information on visiting the Vatican City and its attractions, see our complete guide to the Vatican , which has everything you need to know, including all the highlights, tips for visiting, how to buy tickets and lots more.

From here, head along to the Tiber River, and explore Castel Sant’Angelo (get tickets here ). Afterwards you can head back towards the city center, and visit locations like the Piazza Popolo.

If you have time and are interested you could also visit the Borghese Gallery. Note that this is also a timed entry system – see our guide to visiting the Borghese Gallery for more.

For your last day in Rome, we recommend spending some time exploring the Appian Way. This was one of the major routes in and out of the city, and is home to a number of ancient Roman ruins, as well as catacombs. A stop at the Baths of Caracalla on your way out of the city is also recommended.

Another option for your last day in Rome (or your first day, depending on how you decide to structure your itinerary) is to take a walking tour.

We’ve taken a number of walking tours in Rome with both Take Walks and Context , and enjoyed them all. As an example, see this introduction to Rome which includes gelato tasting!

For more inspiration for your visit to Rome, see our itineraries for 3 days in Rome , 2 days in Rome and a day in Rome .

In terms of saving money, there are a number of passes available for sight-seeing. For 3 days, our recommendation would be the Omnia Rome and Vatican Card. This includes public transport in Rome, a hop on hop off pass, and skip the line entry with timed reservations at the major attractions.

There are other passes as well, including the  Roma Pass , the  Rome Tourist Card and the  Best of Rome All Access pass . Which is best for you will depend on how many sites you are interested in visiting, and whether you plan on using the specific features they offer.

That pretty much finishes up the itinerary section of this post. We’ll share with you our tips for where to stay in Rome, before moving on to some practical information to help you plan this trip perfectly.

Where to Stay in Rome

We recommend the following hotels in Rome. The first three are near the main train station, which will make for an easier transfer when you arrive from Venice.

  • Gioberti Art Hotel  – 50 yards from Termini Station, a well rated excellent value 4* hotel
  • NH Collection Palazzo Cinquecento  – Awesome value 5* hotel just a few steps from the train station
  • Hotel Valentino Palace  – a fantastic mid-range 3* property, just 150 yards from the train station
  • The  Navona Theatre Hotel – a well reviewed and very centrally located 3* hotel
  • The  Mimosa Pantheon Hotel – an excellent value budget hotel just around the corner from the Pantheon
  • The  Hotel Navona – a well reviewed 3* hotel next to the Pantheon
  • Di Rienzo Pantheon Palace – a centrally located well reviewed boutique hotel within walking distance of Rome’s highlights

2 days in Rome - Sunrise castell d angelo rome

2 Week Europe Itinerary Map

To help you visualise this itinerary, we’ve put together this overview map of the stops and route.

2 Week Europe Itinerary Map

2 Week Europe Itinerary Summary:

  • Day 1: London. Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Trafalgar Square, Covent Garden, Churchill War Rooms, Buckingham Palace and the  London Eye .
  • Day 2: London. Tower of London , Tower Bridge, Borough Market, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the Tate Modern, Shakespeare’s Globe and the Shard.
  • Day 3: London. Windsor Castle, Hampton Court Palace, Stonehenge
  • Day 4: Paris. Eiffel Tower, Seine River Cruise, Musee d’Orsay, Walking tour
  • Day 5: Paris. Saint Chapelle, Notre Dame, Louvre, Arc de Triomphe
  • Day 6: Paris. Versaille, Moulin Rouge
  • Day 7: Barcelona. Sagrada Familia, Recinte Modernista Sant Pau, Park Güell, Gaudi Experience, Camp Nou
  • Day 8: Barcelona. Casa Batlló, Casa Milá, Barcelona Cathedral, Palau de la Musica Catalana, Picasso Museum
  • Day 9: Barcelona. Girona & Figueres
  • Day 10: Venice. St. Mark’s Square, Doge’s Palace, Rialto Bridge, Gondola ride
  • Day 11: Venice. Murano, Burano
  • Day 12: Rome. Colosseum, Roman Forum, Spanish Steps, Pantheon, Trevi Fountain.
  • Day 13: Rome. Vatican Museums, St. Peter’s Basilica, Castel Sant’Angelo, Piazza Popolo, Borghese Gallery
  • Day 14: Rome. Appian Way, Baths of Caracalla

How to Get Around Europe

Europe has no shortage of transportation options to get you from place to place. For this itinerary, we would suggest you primarily use the train to get from city to city.

The high speed trains in Europe run frequently, are very comfortable, and are more environmentally friendly than short hop flights. If you book in advance they can also be cost effective. They also have the advantage that there are fewer baggage restrictions, and train stations tend to be in the city center – unlike airports.

Of course, not every segment of this trip would suit a train. For example, from Barcelona to Venice would take at least 24 hours by train. Also, Paris to Barcelona is a fairly lengthy journey. There is the option to take an overnight train, however it isn’t direct so it takes a while. It does save you the cost of a hotel night though.

For train travel across Europe, it’s important to book your tickets in advance as this will get you the best prices. We recommend thetrainline which supports booking tickets in all the countries visited on this itinerary.

For flights, we suggest you try Kiwi , which includes the major low cost airlines as well the more traditionally priced carriers.

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When to Visit Europe

You can certainly visit Europe year-round, although visiting at different times of year will give you different experiences.

For the most part, summers in Europe are quite warm, with temperatures likely to be between 25C & 32C (77F – 90F) on average. Whilst the weather is going to be most reliable in the summer months of June through August, this is also going to be the busiest time of year to visit.

The cities in particular are very popular with visitors, and lines for attractions can be long at these times of year. We wouldn’t say you shouldn’t visit at this time of year, but you should definitely plan ahead and arrange all your entry tickets so as to make the most effective use of your time.

Our favourite time to travel in Europe is the shoulder months of April / May, and September / October. These months tend to offer a combination of reasonable weather and less busy attractions.

We’ve also travelled extensively throughout Europe in the cooler winter months, from November through to March. It never gets much below freezing during this time, so as long as you dress appropriately, we think you will have a great time.

See our guide to what to pack for London to give you some ideas of what you might want to bring along.

We don’t think there’s a bad time of year to travel in Europe. It’s just a question of planning and preparing properly in advance. It is also worth checking if there are any events happening in the city when you visit that might cause it to be busier.

For example, Venice has a major Carnival celebration near the start of the year, and the city is always busier at this time. Other cities also have events, and if you visit during them you will find accommodation prices will be higher, and the city will be busier.

St Peters line Rome

Practical Advice for Travelling in Europe

Europe uses a 220-240V electrical system, so if you are travelling from the USA, Canada, or any other country that uses a 110V system, you will need to check that your electrical items are compatible.

In our experience, lower power items like laptops and smartphone charges are compatible from 110V – 240V, but higher power items like hair dryers and hair straighteners are usually not. The power rating and acceptable voltage should be marked on the device somewhere.

It’s really important you don’t plug a device into a voltage it doesn’t support, as it will damage it. Its best to leave non-compatible items at home and purchase a dual voltage appliance if you need it during your trip, such as a dual voltage hair straightener .

In addition, the UK and continental Europe have two different plug types. Mainland Europe generally uses a two pin system with round holes, whilst the UK has a three pin system with rectangular holes.

For travel, therefore, you will need a travel adaptor like this which will let you plug your devices in. Note that most travel adaptors are not voltage convertors. You would need something like this to convert the voltage.

Internet in the form of free WiFi access is fairly easy to get access too across all the cities mentioned in our article. In addition, since the EU has abolished roaming charges, if you buy a SIM card in one EU country, you should be able to continue to use it in other countries without any additional charges.

Depending on the device you are travelling with, you will have a number of options for accessing the internet when you travel, from picking up a local SIM, to renting a WiFi hotspot, to just using WiFi as you go.

We have a detailed guide to getting online when you travel to help you figure out which is best for you.

The two currencies that you’ll need for this trip are the pound sterling (GBP) and the euro (EUR). The UK (London in the case of our itinerary) uses the pound sterling and the rest of the European destinations on our itinerary use the Euro. Euros from one country can be used in any of the other countries.

In our experience, you should be able to pay for the majority of your travel spending using a credit or debit card. We’d advise getting one of these that doesn’t impose foreign transaction fees if that is an option. Ideally it will also support contactless technology, which will make using it for smaller payments easier.

We would also suggest you always have some cash in the local currency on you for small purchases, tips, and places that don’t accept credit cards (or if there is any issues with your credit card).

There are cash machines available in all the major cities on this itinerary where you will be able to use your bank card to withdraw a local currency. Depending on the policy of your bank at home, you might be able to withdraw cash from these without a fee, but do check in advance of your travel so you don’t pay fees unexpectedly. Some ATM’s also charge a fee.

If there is a fee from your bank for withdrawing cash, you might find it is more cost effective to order some money at home before you leave – or to find a bank account that lets you withdraw cash fee free.

All the cities that we have listed are relatively safe, but of course you should take the same safety precautions when travelling that you would at home. Avoid walking alone at night in unfamiliar areas and don’t leave valuables lying around where they could be easily snatched.

It’s also a good idea to read up on some of the common scams that you might encounter in each city – for example, we wrote a guide to common scams in Paris to give you an idea of what to look out for.

We’d also suggest keeping your valuables locked in your hotel safe when possible, and to avoid carrying large amounts of money on you. We’d also suggest having a good travel insurance policy. Basically, just apply the same safety principles that you would at home to your personal belongings and safety, and you should have a safe trip!

Drinking Water

Unless otherwise indicated with a sign, the water in the taps in all of the cities on our list is safe to drink. In some cities, you’ll also found water fountains where you can refill your water bottle.

The water in Barcelona does have a slightly strange taste due to the high mineral content, and many local people prefer to drink bottled water. However, the tap water is safe to drink unless otherwise noted.

We very much recommend that you travel with a high quality reusable water bottle like this and fill it up as you go. This will be friendlier to the environment, and save you having to spend money on a resource that is available for free.

Versailles Paris_by_Laurence Norah

Walking Tours in Europe

One of our favourite ways to explore a new city is to take a walking tour. It’s a great way to get oriented, learn about the city, its sights and its culture, plus get local tips on places to eat, drink and see from the guide.

We’ve taken walking tours in cities around the world, and we nearly always use one of two companies – Take Walks , and Context . Both of these companies offer small group walking tours in all the cities we’ve covered.

Take Walks offers tours with groups of up to around 14, whilst Context offers more private and semi-private tours. Here are some example tours to consider for the various cities in this itinerary.

  • This London In a Day tour visit the highlights of London in one day, including the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey & Changing of the Guard.
  • This introduction to London Tour which includes many of the highlights of the city
  • This tour of the Chruchill War Rooms in London
  • This full day tour of Paris which includes a Skip the Line Louvre Tour, the Eiffel Tower, Montmartre & a Seine River Cruise
  • An introduction to Paris Tour , which includes the Louvre, Opera Garnier and the Champs-Elysees
  • A full day tour of Barcelona which includes a visit to La Sagrada Família, Casa Milà & the Gothic Quarter
  • This Rome In A Day Tour which includes a guided visit and skip the line entry to the Vatican, the Colosseum & a tour of the Historic Center of the city
  • A full day tour of Venice which includes St. Mark’s Basilica, the Doge’s Palace, & a Gondola Ride

Of course, this is just a sample of some of the many tours available, which vary in length from a couple of hours to a full day. We suggest taking a look at all the walks on Take Walks here and Context here . Note that all bookings through our Context links save you 10% on the tour price automatically.

Finally, there are of course a multitude of other options for walking tours. If you would like more options, we suggest looking at the listings on either GetYourGuide or Viator. These two sites have tour options from a wide range of companies, and you can read reviews from other travellers prior to booking to decide if it’s a good option for you.

Walks of Italy Tour Rome

Saving Money in Europe

Europe, and western Europe in particular, is not exactly known for being a budget destination. The cities in particular are fairly expensive. Your main costs on this trip are likely to be the flights (biggest cost for most), accommodation, attraction entry, transport between the cities, and eating out.

To help you control these costs, we wanted to share some of our tips from years of experience travelling in European cities, so you don’t spend money unnecessarily. Even if you’re not on a tight budget, there’s no need to waste money when you don’t have to!

Use City Passes

All the cities in our itinerary have one or more city passes to choose from. City passes generally include either free or discounted admission to the major attractions in the city, and may also include other benefits.

These other benefits will vary, but will generally include things like fast track entry to some attractions, inclusive public transport, hop on hop off bus tickets, and discounts on meals and other activities like walking tours, wine tastings, and so on.

We have used a number of city passes during our travels in the cities in this itinerary, and our recommended passes for you to consider are as follows:

  • For London: The London Pass. Available in durations from one to ten days, covers all the major attractions in London. See our full review of the London Pass here , and buy yours here .
  • For Paris: The Paris Pass or the Paris Museum Pass. The Paris Pass includes entry to most of Paris’s major museums, plus includes attractions like a HOHO bus and Seine River Cruise. The Paris Museum Pass just covers attraction entry fees. See our full review of the Paris Pass here , and buy your Paris Pass here . We also have a full review of the Paris Museum Pass here, and you can buy it here .
  • For Barcelona: The Go Barcelona Pass , Barcelona City Pass and Barcelona Card . These vary in what they cover, and whilst we suggest you pick up at least one of them, the best one for you will depend on your interests. See our full comparison of the Barcelona City Passes for more information.
  • For Rome: The Omnia Rome and Vatican Card or the Roma Pass . Both these passes include free public transport in Rome, as well as free and discounted admission to attractions across the city. The Omnia Rome and Vatican Card also includes skip the line access to the Vatican Museums, St. Peter’s Basilica, as well as other Vatican attractions. It also has a hop on hop off bus.
  • For Venice : We have never used a discount card in Venice. However, there is a Venice Pass which includes many of the museums and churches that is well worth checking out.

If you are planning on seeing a number of sights in each city you visit, a city pass can definitely save you money. Some of them will also save you time, as they offer skip the line benefits. However, we do recommend doing a little bit of reading on each pass to make sure it makes sense for your specific trip.

Note that city passes are often not as good of a value for children (especially young children) and those who are eligible for discounts at many attractions (seniors, disabled, EU university students), so do check if you qualify for any discounts before buying a pass.

Coliseum Rome Roma Pass

Book accommodation and transportation in advance

The two major costs on your trip are likely to be accommodation and transportation. Our major tip for both of these is to book them in advance.

For transport in Europe, the best deals are nearly always to be had if you book as far in advance as possible. The cheapest tickets on flights and trains always sell out first, and then the prices will increase.

We recommend you check your flights and book in advance here , and your trains here .

Accommodation is not quite so straight forward, as prices can dip and rise depending on demand. However, in our personal experience, prices tend to be lower if we book further in advance. Plus, you can often take advantage of free cancellation policies, and re-book if the prices drop.

Also, don’t forget to look at accommodation options beyond hotels. Short term apartment rentals can be very cost effective, plus they will allow you to prepare some of your own meals if you want, which will also save you money.

We generally use booking.com for booking our hotels, and they also include apartments. We also use Plum Guide regularly. There are plenty more options though – see our guide to some AirBnB alternatives to give you some ideas.

Invest in a Guidebook

We recommend investing in a guidebook, especially if this is your first trip to western Europe.

Investing $15 to $25 in a guidebook can save you much more in time and money. A guidebook can cover much more in-depth information than we can in this blog post, and means you’ll have all the information you need at your fingertips.

Rick Steves Guidebook

For this trip, we recommend the Rick Steves Best of Europe guide . If you had to pick one guide book, that would be our favourite – it covers all the destinations in this itinerary (plus many more!) and has lots of practical information, tips and advice to help you plan. We use and love it.

If you have room in your bag, we can also recommend the Europe through the Back Door book , which has a lot of general travel advice for Europe.

Other options to consider include Lonely Planet’s Western Europe guidebook and/or the Insight Guide to Western Europe .

Be sure to purchase a recently edited/updated version of the guidebook. So make sure it was updated in the last year or so. Most guidebooks are updated every year or two to make sure the information is as up to date as possible.

If you are not sure which guidebook may be best for you, you might want to browse in your local bookshop or library before picking one.

Use Public Transport Effectively

The cheapest and most effective way to get around the cities listed in this post is to take public transport (well, after walking of course!).

Each city has its own public transport network, with various fares and ticket options. Learning how to use these properly will save you money.

For example, in London, it’s possible to buy individual tickets using cash. However, this can be twice as expensive as using an Oyster Card or Contactless bank card for your travel. In Paris, you can buy tickets individually, or you can save money by buying booklets of ten tickets.

In addition, many of the city passes we recommend come with some sort of travel card, which can also save you money.

Basically, each transport system has its own quirks, and having a handle on these will likely save you money. We also recommend always checking to see how far your destination is on foot before taking public transport.

The public transit maps are unlikely to match up to the reality of geography, and you might find it will take the same amount of time to walk somewhere as it would have to take a bus or metro, plus walking is free!

Find restaurant deals

Our final tip covers the last major expense, which will be eating out. Of course, eating out is a major part of travelling, but the costs can quickly add up.

The good news is that you can also save money on eating out. The secret is to figure out when the restaurant deals are likely to be happening.

For example, in France and Spain, it’s very common for lunch time menus to be offered. These are usually two or three course meals, which sometimes include wine, bread and coffee, and which are usually priced under €20 per person.

For Paris, see our guide to some of the best Michelin starred restaurants for lunch deals .

In London, these aren’t as common, however, many restaurants offer theater deals. These are special priced menus offered either late in the afternoon (5pm – 7pm generally) or late in the evening (10pm and onwards), designed for theatre goers who want to get a meal before or after the show.

Of course, you don’t have to be going to the theatre to take advantage of these deals!

Other options for saving money on dining out include taking advantage of street food, picking up “meal deals” at supermarkets like M&S in London, putting together picnics from markets in Paris – the list goes on. It is certainly possible to eat on the cheap quite easily if you make a little bit of effort to do so.

Laurence and Jess Rome

Further Reading for your Trip to Europe

Well, that’s pretty much the end of this post to help you plan your own perfect Europe itinerary and trip.

As you can see from the links shared throughout the post, we have a lot of content to help you plan your own trip to Europe. To make it easier for you, I wanted to put some of the most useful content here, for easy reference. I’ve also included some third party resources you might find useful in planning.

  • For London , we have a guide for a day in London , 2 days in London , 3 days in London and 6 days in London
  • We have a guide to the London Eye , Tower of London , Harry Potter filming locations in London , Winston Churchill locations in London , London’s War Museums , London’s UNESCO sites and tips on taking a walking tour in London
  • We also have a guide to public transport in London , a guide to getting from the airport to London , a guide to what to pack for London , a guide to the cost of travel in the UK and a review of the London Pass
  • For Paris , we have a guide to a day in Paris , 2 days in Paris and 3 days in Paris
  • We have a guide to the best photography locations in Paris , afternoon tea in Paris , thoughts on the best Seine River cruises , a guide to making perfume in Paris , and advice for visiting the Moulin Rouge
  • We also have a review of the Paris Pass , a review of the Paris Museum Pass , a guide to visiting the Eiffel Tower
  • For Barcelona , we have a guide for 1 day in Barcelona , 2 days in Barcelona and 3 days in Barcelona .
  • We have a guide to the best photography locations in Barcelona , the Anton Gaudi sites in Barcelona , and the Sagrada Familia
  • We have a review of the Go Barcelona Pass and a comparison of the major Barcelona city passes
  • For Rome, we have a guide to things to do in Rome , a day in Rome , 2 days in Rome and 3 days in Rome
  • We also have a guide to the best gelato in Rome , the best cafes in Rome , visiting the Borghese Gallery in Rome, visiting the Colosseum in Rome and our thoughts on taking a walking tour in Rome
  • For Venice , we have a guide to spending a day in Venice
  • We also have a guide to visiting the Doge’s Palace & St. Mark’s Basilica , as well as our thoughts on a tour of Casanova’s Venice
  • Investing in a guidebook can help save you time and money on your trip and help you be prepared. For this trip, we recommend the Rick Steves Best of Europe guide , Lonely Planet’s Western Europe guidebook and/or the Insight Guide to Western Europe

And that’s it for our guide to spending 2 weeks in Europe! As always, we’re open to questions, comments and feedback – just pop them in the comments section below, and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can!

A detailed 2 week Europe itinerary, with things to do, tips for travel, accommodation and money saving

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There are 30 comments on this post

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Kirsten says

1st April 2023 at 1:43 am

We just came back from this exact trip on 3/26/23. We followed your itinerary and most of your suggestions on what to do in each city. Thank you so much for putting this together. My husband and I aren’t the best planners and this step by step guide was so helpful and perfect for us! We really couldn’t have done it without you. Thank you!

Laurence Norah says

2nd April 2023 at 10:33 pm

Hi Kirsten!

Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by and share your experience! I’m delighted to hear you guys had a great time in Europe and that we were able to help with your trip planning, it really means a lot to know that our content is helpful 🙂

Safe travels!

Laurence & Jessica

12th February 2023 at 3:08 pm

This is an awesome itinerary. Thank you so much for sharing! We hope to make our first trip to Europe in the future.

12th February 2023 at 4:18 pm

My pleasure Sara, I hope you get to visit Europe soon and do let me know if you have any questions when you start to plan your trip!

6th February 2023 at 12:20 am

Hello, Thank you for great posts on Europe trip. Really help a lot when I’m trying to plan for mine. Do you mind sharing apartment name you stayed in Paris, the one with Eiffel tower view? Im looking for nice apartment to stay with Eiffel tower view for my honeymoon this year. Really appreciate it if you could share. Thank you 🙂

9th February 2023 at 8:15 am

Thanks very much. So the apartment was this one which we booked via Plum Guide. I’m not sure it’s still bookable, although there is an option to message the host. I’d also recommend the Eiffel Tower guide we have here , as that as a selection of accommodation options with good views. We’ve also stayed at the Pullman Paris hotel which has excellent Eiffel Tower views for example.

Have a great trip to Europe!

19th January 2023 at 4:05 pm

I’ve subscribed, but still cannot gain printing access…please help – thank you!

23rd January 2023 at 2:17 pm

Sorry for the slow response, we’re travelling in Uganda and Internet access has been sporadic! I can see you are an active subscriber, does it still not work when you put your email address in on the print page? If not, if you could let me know what device and browser you are using and I’ll see if I can figure out what is going on!

2nd July 2022 at 3:39 am

This was a great blog. I am trying to put together a surprise trip for my wife’s 40th next year. I am gonna try to do it myself based off all the deals y’all have given. Bless

2nd July 2022 at 10:58 am

My pleasure Wayne, have a great trip and do let me know if you have any questions 🙂

alex47_in_downtown says

8th February 2022 at 2:16 pm

This was the most detailed, informative & hence the most helpful travel blogpost I’ve ever read… 🙂 Perfect itinerary for first-timers (like me)…! Lots of love from India <3

10th February 2022 at 12:11 pm

Thanks very much Alex, I was delighted to be of help! I hope you have a great time in Europe, and do let me know if you have any questions!

Ashley Salgado says

8th October 2022 at 7:19 pm

Why not have a pdf versión to be able to print. Tried to print this but it’s a whopping 100 pages with all the ads and comments. Great info I’d love to print and read with time not on a screen.

8th October 2022 at 11:23 pm

Thanks for your message! Every post is available in printable format, if you look at the bottom of the post on mobile, or the side on desktop, there is a little print icon. If you press that you can go through the steps to access a printable version without ads, comments or images. You can then print it to PDF, most devices these days let you save a webpage as a PDF from the print option.

Have a great time in Europe!

Michelle says

2nd November 2021 at 1:49 am

I’m so glad I found this blog. This is so helpful and fantastic. It really gives us a clearer picture on how to plan our first trip to Europe (16 days) and it hits the cities we want to start off with and we plan on doing. Thank you!!!

2nd November 2021 at 11:06 am

My pleasure Michelle! Have a wonderful trip across Europe, and do let me know if you have any questions!

Penny Hampton says

2nd January 2021 at 2:42 pm

Loved your blog on traveling to Europe. We have never been to Europe so this would be our first time. What you write is exactly what we are looking for. Great advise on everything from where to go-where to stay and where to visit. If Covid ever dies down, we will try to make the trip.

2nd January 2021 at 2:46 pm

Thank you so much Penny! I certainly hope you get to take a trip sooner rather than later 🙂 If you have any questions when it comes to the planning, just let me know. Happy 2021!

20th February 2020 at 4:03 am

Hi Lawrence and Jessica,

Thank you so much for this article, it has been very helpful as I try and plan out our first trip to Europe. I will be taking my sons ages 24 and 18 this summer and are hoping to say about 18 days. We are planning to go to every location except Barcelona, and would like to add a city in either the Netherlands, Belgium or Switzerland. Which would you recommend? Also we are planning to travel at the end of July/early August, so I’m sure our costs will be quite high. Any thoughts on how much I should expect a 2 week trip to cost? I know that may be a difficult question to answer, but even if it’s a broad ballpark it would be very helpful.

20th February 2020 at 12:43 pm

Our pleasure, sounds like you have a great trip coming up! So yes, this is a really hard question to answer 😉 I would suggest taking a look at our suggested costs for a UK trip here , which should help with your planning. Prices in continental Europe are fairly comparable to the UK. Everyone has a different travel style and budget, and idea of what is expensive or acceptable, so it’s hard to know. There would be a huge difference depending on if it was hostel accommodation of 5* 😉 Just be aware that capital cities tend to be more expensive as a general rule of thumb.

In terms of saving, definitely check out apartment rentals which might work out cheaper as you are in a group. Also, booking transport well in advance (planes and trains) will make a huge difference to the cost. Flexibility in timing is also useful.

In terms of adding another city, Amsterdam is obviously nice but busy. Ghent and Bruges are lovely in Belgium. We’ve actually just come back from Switzerland. There’s a lot to choose from and a great transport network, but Geneva is a good starting point.

Let me know if you have any more questions, I’m happy to try and help!

12th February 2020 at 4:36 pm

I’ve sent this to my wife, this looks amazing! I think ill try to see if we can get an overnight Rail between the far trips however, this looks fantastic! and Exciting!

It will be our 1st trip to the EU, so hitting up all these locations at once will give us a great taste of so many locations!

12th February 2020 at 5:38 pm

Thanks Ryan! I hope you guys have a great trip, and do let me know if you have any questions!

10th December 2019 at 4:46 pm

Amazing article! You have inspired me to explore Europe soon! Thanks!

10th December 2019 at 4:58 pm

Thanks very much – I hope you get to visit soon and have a great trip when you do!

19th November 2019 at 4:03 pm

Loved this article and found it very useful. I’m in the process of trying to plan a trip for next year with my 18 and 19 year olds. I can’t quite committ to exactly where I want to take them. This will be our first trip overseas and I’ve been driving myself crazy googling different locations and ideas. This article has been one of the best as I feel like I really need a step by step guide to create and book whatever vacation I decide to go with. Any tips on what you think would be a great trip for that age bracket would be very appreciated.

20th November 2019 at 3:06 pm

Awesome, delighted to have been able to help. So I think this itinerary will work for your family, the only thing might be to tweak the attractions you visit based on your interests and the interests of your family. So if they aren’t into lots of museums, or art, then maybe cut those back a bit. Perhaps they’d be more interested in food tours or more interactive things like that. The best option would definitely be to just have a chat with them and find out what they might like to do, and then you can try to make everyone happy 😉 Communication is definitely key, and if they feel they have input and control then I think everyone will have a better time.

I hope this helps a bit!

Have an amazing trip and don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any more questions!

Natasha says

4th October 2019 at 1:19 pm

I might suggest taking skipping at least Barcelona. It’s not that it’s not beautiful, it definetly is. The city can’t handle all the tourist coming its way…Please do some research beforehand. I might opt for a longer stay in one city than trying to do too much. Or focus on one region. You probably wouldn’t do New York, California, Chicago and Grand Canyon in 2 weeks… It may not look like it on the map, but these aren’t such small distances.

4th October 2019 at 7:40 pm

Hi Natasha,

Thanks for your feedback. I’d disagree about Barcelona as I think it’s a beautiful city (we have visited many times – this article is based on our experiences not research). We would agree that folks should try and spend longer in each place rather than moving too fast for sure, and slower travel is something we prefer ourselves. That said, not everyone has the luxury of longer vacations, and wants to see quite a few places, hence we’ve put this itinerary together. Compared to some itineraries, we think it’s actually pretty relaxed and achievable 🙂

Thanks again for taking the time to comment!

14th September 2019 at 4:57 pm

Thanks for this detailed itinerary and plans. I really liked reading this. We are planning for a Europe trip on coming December. Do you think the itinerary you mentioned can be a difficult one to choose because of weather in December?

14th September 2019 at 5:47 pm

I think the itinerary is do-able at any time of year. December is a good month for visiting Europe as you have the pretty Christmas lights and Christmas markets. Obviously it will be colder and there’s more chance of rain, but appropriate clothing will solve that issue!

Have a great trip and let me know if I can be of any more help 🙂

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Happy to Wander

40+ One Week Itineraries for Europe You’ll Want to Steal ASAP

Last Updated: April 19, 2023

*FYI - this post may contain affiliate links, which means we earn a commission at no extra cost to you if you purchase from them. Also, as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Check out our Privacy Policy and Disclosure. for more info.

trip ideas to europe

One week in Europe might not seem like a lot, but with the right planning, it’s more than enough time for a bucket list adventure that you’ll fondly latergram for years to come.

To show you how, I’ve spent months in a nostalgic cave compiling over forty (yes, 40!) one week itineraries for Europe below based on personal experience that will show you just how much fun you can fit into a 1 week Europe trip.

Yes, these are all itineraries I have personally done at one point or another, so I can vouch for their epic-ness. Plus, in true Christina fashion, I’ve given them all fun names.

Of course, adjust and tweak them as much as you want to suit your needs, especially if you prefer slower-paced travel. I warn you, the itineraries below are ambitious , but with only seven days in Europe, a bit of ambitious-ness is a must!

trip ideas to europe

Save this list of one week Europe itineraries for later!

You’ll be very glad you did.

For organizational purposes, I’ve broken down my one week Europe itineraries into the following categories:

  • 1 Country, 1 Week Europe Itineraries
  • 2 Country, 1 Week Europe Itineraries

3 Country, 1 Week Europe Itineraries

This is a loooong post, but I hope you find it helpful! And of course, feel free to suggest more ideas for spending a week in Europe in the comments. There’s still a lot of this continent I have yet to cover, and this list is far from complete!

1 Country, 1 Week Europe Itineraries 

If you only have a week in Europe, my honest recommendation is to just pick a country and explore it well over the course of the week. So, here are some ideas for amazing one week, one country itineraries in Europe that I can personally vouch for.

NOTE: I’ve arranged all of the following 1 week European itineraries assuming you’ll need the final day to return to your point of departure. Of course, feel free to use that last day as a flex day as well, or to add more breathing room in your itinerary (which I’d definitely recommend if it’s possible!)

The ‘Belgian Bliss’ 1 Week Belgium Itinerary

Places covered: Brussels, Bruges, Ghent, Antwerp (Optional)

Belgium is hands down one of the most underrated countries in Europe. Thanks to its compact size, one week is enough time to explore multiple cities and taste-test your way through this scenic wonderland of beer, waffles, and chocolate.

Here’s how to spend a week in Belgium:

  • Day 1: Land in Brussels, Overnight in Brussels (Brussels hotel recommendations)
  • Day 2: Explore Brussels, Overnight in Brussels (Brussels hotel recommendations)
  • Day 3: Take train to Bruges (1h), Explore Bruges, Overnight in Bruges (Bruges hotel recommendations)
  • Day 4: Explore Bruges, Overnight in Bruges OR Optional Day Trip to Antwerp
  • Day 5: Take train to Ghent (25 min), Explore Ghent, Overnight in Ghent
  • Day 6: Explore Ghent, Overnight in Ghent OR Optional Day Trip to Antwerp
  • Day 7: Departure

Getting around: Train travel in Belgium is super affordable and easy! Use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times, or if you’re under 26, make sure you use the GoPass1 which gets you a 2nd class ticket ANYWHERE in the country for only €6.60.

Want to read more about Belgium? Check out these posts:

  • My top Brussels travel tips
  • Fun things to do in Ghent
  • Fun things to do in Bruges
  • My 48h in Bruges Itinerary
  • My DIY Antwerp Walking Tour

Guildhall buildings in Antwerp's Main Square Grote Markt

The ‘Going Dutch’ 1 Week Netherlands Itinerary

Places Covered: Amsterdam & Rotterdam with Optional Day Trips to Haarlem, Utrecht or Giethoorn

The Netherlands is an amazing little country with lots to offer beyond its world-famous capital of Amsterdam. From fairytale day trips like Giethoorn and Utrecht to the ultra-cool offerings of Rotterdam, exploring this country is a great choice if you only have a week in Europe.

Here’s how to spend a week in the Netherlands:

  • Day 1: Land in Amsterdam, Overnight in Amsterdam
  • Day 2: Explore Amsterdam ( iAmsterdam card recommended!), Overnight in Amsterdam
  • Day 3: Explore Amsterdam, Overnight in Amsterdam
  • Day 4: [Overnight or Day] Trip to Haarlem, Utrecht or Giethoorn 
  • Day 5: Take train to Rotterdam (40 min with Thalys), Overnight in Rotterdam
  • Day 6: Rotterdam, Overnight in Rotterdam

Getting around: Public transport in the Netherlands is super quick and convenient! You can use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times, but you will have no trouble doing this itinerary using trains/buses alone. I also recommend 9292 for finding routes.

Want to read more about the Netherlands? Check out these posts:

  • The Best Amsterdam Canal Cruises
  • I Amsterdam Card Review: Is it Worth It?
  • Fun Things to do in Giethoorn
  • The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Keukenhof Gardens

The ultimate guide packed with tips and things to do in Giethoorn, the Venice of the Netherlands and one o the most magical places in Europe! #europe #giethoorn #travel

The ‘Swiss Rollin’ Round’ 1 Week Switzerland Itinerary

Places Covered:  Zurich, Lucerne, Interlaken, Thun or Brienz, Lauterbrunnen

I am utterly obsessed with Switzerland, and if money is no object, I think it’s the perfect country to spend a week when you’re in Europe. From elegant cities and jawdropping nature to some of the most scenic train rides in the world, you definitely won’t regret spending a week here.

Here’s how to spend a week in Switzerland:

  • Day 1: Land in Zurich, Overnight in Zurich
  • Day 2: Explore Zurich, Overnight in Zurich
  • Day 3: Take the train to Lucerne (45 min), Overnight in Lucerne
  • Day 4: Explore Lucerne, Overnight in Lucerne
  • Day 5: Take the train to Interlaken (2h), Explore the Area, Overnight in either Thun or Brienz
  • Day 6: Day Trip to Lauterbrunnen Valley (1h by Train), Overnight in either Thun or Brienz

NOTE: Interlaken is often recommended as a base for those visiting the Bernese Oberland, but to be honest, I find both Thun and Brienz to be far prettier. That’s why I’d advise making one of those towns your base instead of Interlaken, or if you’d prefer more time in the Lauterbrunnen Valley, staying overnight in Lauterbrunnen is also a great choice.

Getting around: Public transportation in Switzerland is incredible, and you can easily travel across the country by train. You can use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times, and be sure to download the SBB app to get timetables on your phone.

Want to read more about Switzerland? Check out these posts:

  • The Most Scenic Train Rides in Switzerland
  • The Best Christmas Markets in Switzerland
  • Fun & Unique Things to do in Lucerne
  • Fun & Unique Things to do in Chur
  • How to Ride the Legendary Gelmerbahn (Switzerland’s Viral “Rollercoaster”)
  • The Ultimate Guide to the Glacier Express
  • The Ultimate Guide to the Bernina Express

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Great Austrian Classic’ – 1 Week in Austria Itinerary

Places Covered: Salzburg, Hallstatt, Vienna

Austria is an absolutely stunning country with tons of options if you’re looking to combine nature with culture! The following one week itinerary combines some of Austria’s most iconic destinations, including Vienna (Austria’s grand capital), Hallstatt (a true fairytale come to life), and Salzburg (famous for Mozart and the Sound of Music).

NOTE: Hallstatt is more commonly done as a day trip from Salzburg, but I recommend staying overnight if you can simply because the town is not all that enjoyable with all the day trip crowds. Staying overnight means you can wake up early to explore before all the crowds get there, and also allows you to enjoy the peace of it at night.

Here’s how to spend a week in Austria:

  • Day 1: Land in Vienna, Overnight in Vienna
  • Day 2: Explore Vienna, Overnight in Vienna
  • Day 3: Explore Vienna, Overnight in Vienna
  • Day 4: Take train to Salzburg (2.5h), Explore Salzburg, Overnight in Salzburg
  • Day 5: Explore Salzburg, Overnight in Salzburg
  • Day 6: Head to Hallstatt, Overnight in Hallstatt
  • Day 7: DIY Hallstatt Walking Tour , Departure

Getting around: Use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Alternative Austria’ 1 Week South Styria (Austria) Itinerary

Places Covered: Graz and South Styria

While most first-time visitors to Austria will visit the most famous destinations like Vienna and Salzburg, I can highly recommend a visit to Graz and the region of South Styria. This area is known for incredible wine and a laid-back Mediterranean sort of vibe – so much that Graz is informally known as the northernmost Mediterranean city!

Here’s how to spend a week in South Styria:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Graz, Explore Graz & Overnight in Graz
  • Day 2: Explore Graz, Overnight in Graz
  • Day 3: Day trip to Thal (Arnold Schwarzenegger Museum) & Eggenberg Palace, Overnight in Graz
  • Day 4: The South Styrian Wine Route, Recommended overnight base: Gamlitz
  • Day 5: The South Styrian Wine Route, Recommended overnight base: Gamlitz
  • Day 6: Day trip to Maribor (stopping at the famous heart shaped road at Dreisiebner Stammhaus  along the way)

Getting around: A car would be handy for the South Styrian Wine Route portion of this trip, but many hotels offer shuttle services/taxis so you can visit portions of the wine route without driving. Besides that, you can easily do this itinerary with public transport.

Rooftop view from K&O Department Store in Graz, Austria

The ‘Beautiful Bavaria’ 1 Week Bavaria (Germany) Itinerary

Places Covered: Munich, Berchtesgaden , Optional Day Trips to Neuschwanstein, Salzburg or Nuremberg

I’ve been lucky to call Bavaria home for a few years, and let me tell you: this state is truly magical. The following one week itinerary combines culture with nature in the prettiest possible way, with plenty of flexibility in optional day trips that allow you to choose your own adventure.

WHEN TO VISIT: Munich is home to the world-famous Oktoberfest , but time your visit correctly and you might also catch one of the city’s lesser known beer festivals like the Starkbierfest in the winter or Frühlingsfest in the Spring.

Here’s how to spend a week in Bavaria:

  • Day 1: Land in Munich, Overnight in Munich
  • Day 2: Explore Munich (here are my favourite things to do in Munich) , Overnight in Munich
  • Day 3: Explore Munich OR Optional Day trip to Neuschwanstein or Salzburg
  • Day 4: Explore Munich OR Optional Day/Overnight Trip to Nuremberg
  • Day 5: Go to Berchtesgaden, Overnight in Berchtesgaden
  • Day 6: Explore Berchtesgaden (maybe do a half day trip to the Eagle’s Nest ), Overnight in Berchtesgaden

Getting around: Public transportation in Bavaria is amazing, and you can easily do this itinerary using just trains/buses. I’d highly recommend buying a Bayern Ticket for all your journeys using regional transport – it’s a day ticket that can save you an incredible amount of money, especially if you are travelling in a group. A car might be nice for the Berchtesgaden leg of the journey, but isn’t a must.

Want to read more about Bavaria? Check out these posts:

  • The Ultimate Germany Travel Guide
  • The Ultimate Munich City Guide
  • 99 Awesome Things to do in Munich
  • Fun Facts About Munich (Most Locals Don’t Even Know!)
  • The Best Things to do in Nuremberg
  • The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Nuremberg Castle
  • The Best Things to do in Bamberg
  • The Best Things to do in Bayreuth
  • How to Spend a Day in Rothenburg ob der Tauber
  • The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Eagle’s Nest

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Doing Deutsch’ 1 Week Germany Itinerary 

Places Covered: Munich and Berlin with Optional Day Trips to Potsdam, Nesuchwanstein, Nuremberg or Berchtesgaden

Germany is a huge country with loads to offer, so a week is barely enough to scrape the surface… but if you like city breaks, then I can recommend this one week Germany itinerary which combines the oh so contrasting cities of Munich & Berlin , along with lovely day trips that showcase some of the country’s top attractions.

Here’s how to spend a week exploring Germany:

  • Day 1: Land in Munich, Overnight in Munich
  • Day 2: Explore Munich, Overnight in Munich
  • Day 3: Explore Munich OR Optional Day Trip to Neuschwanstein, Berchtesgaden or Nuremberg
  • Day 4: ICE train from Munich to Berlin (4h), spend more time in whichever city you prefer, Overnight in Berlin
  • Day 5: Explore Berlin,  Overnight in Berlin
  • Day 6: Explore Berlin OR Optional Day Trip to Potsdam,  Overnight in Berlin

Getting around: The most efficient way to get between Berlin & Munich is the ICE Train which only takes 4 hours. You can use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times, or book directly with DB (their app is very handy to download). For day trips, look into regional day tickets like the Bayern Ticket to save big. Having a car isn’t a must unless you want more flexibility with your day trips.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Castle Crawl’ 1 Week Germany Itinerary 

Places Covered: Munich, Neuschwanstein Castle, Hohenschwangau Castle, Heidelberg, Koblenz, Burg Eltz

If you’re as obsessed with castles as I am, then head to Germany , where you can spend your week in Europe visiting some of the prettiest and most famous castles in the world. The following itinerary is designed with castle stalkers in mind, with plenty of fairytale magic to carry you through the (admittedly) fast-paced schedule.

  • Day 1: Fly into Munich, Overnight in Munich
  • Day 2: Day trip to Neuschwanstein & Hohenschwangau Castles (or take this day trip which also covers Linderhof), Overnight in Munich
  • Day 3: Train to Heidelberg, Overnight in Heidelberg
  • Day 4: Train to Koblenz, Overnight in Koblenz
  • Day 5: Day trip to Burg Eltz , Overnight in Koblenz
  • Day 6: Castle hopping along the middle Rhine, Overnight in Koblenz

Getting around: This itinerary was designed to be doable by public transport, but if you’re really a huge castle fanatic and want to visit many more castles along the way, then having a car will help a lot. For public transport, I’d recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times, or booking directly with the DB App . Also look into regional tickets like the Bayern Ticket to save big.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Cozy Cotswolds’ 1 Week England Itinerary 

Places Covered: Bath, Cirencester, Castle Combe, Tetbury, Bibury, Burford, Bourton-on-the-Water, the Slaughters, Stow-on-the-Wold, Broadway, Chipping Camden

If you’re looking for the storybook version England with buttery stone cottages, quaint villages and elegant country manors, then you need to visit the Cotswolds. I love this area because there are so many different ways you can explore it!

If you’re more of a slow-paced traveler, then you could easily enjoy a quiet week based in just one town while doing day trips. If however you are a “see it all” type of traveler, then it makes more sense to move around a bit, like in this (ambitious but amazing) Cotswolds itinerary.

Here’s how to spend a (fast-paced) week in the Cotswolds:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Bath, Overnight in Bath
  • Day 2: Drive to Cirencester, stopping in Castle Combe and Tetbury along the way, Overnight in Cirencester
  • Day 3: Explore Cirencester, Day trip to Bibury (and/or Burford), Overnight in Cirencester
  • Day 4: Drive to Bourton-on-the-Water, Overnight in Bourton on the Water
  • Day 5: Drive to Broadway, stopping at the Slaughters and Stow-on-the-Wold, Overnight in Broadway
  • Day 6: Explore Broadway, Day Trip to Chipping Camden, Overnight in Broadway

Getting Around: The Cotswolds are really an area best explored by car, with tons of gorgeous scenery and adorable villages to see that aren’t well serviced by public transport. If you’re relying on public transportation, I’d recommend booking yourself an accessible base like London, Oxford or Stratford-Upon-Avon and then booking day tours like these:

  • This full day Cotswolds tour from London
  • This full day Cotswolds tour from Oxford
  • This full day Cotswolds tour from Stratford-Upon-Avon

Want to read more about England? Check out these posts:

  • My Favorite Towns and Villages in the Cotswolds
  • The Most Beautiful Places to Visit in England (Besides London!)
  • Experiencing the Best of Bath in 2 Days

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Barcelona & Friends’ 1 Week Catalonia (Spain) Itinerary

Places Covered: Barcelona, Girona, Montserrat, Tarragona

Catalonia is one of the few Spanish regions I’ve had the privilege of exploring in depth, and wow – what a place. While many travellers tend to visit Barcelona as a standalone city break, those with a week in Europe should definitely explore beyond the Catalonian capital, like in this itinerary which includes stops in Girona, Montserrat and Tarragona.

Here’s how to spend a week in Catalonia:

  • Day 1: Land in Barcelona, Overnight in Barcelona
  • Day 2: Explore Barcelona, Overnight in Barcelona
  • Day 3: Explore Barcelona, Overnight in Barcelona
  • Day 4: [Overnight or Day] Trip to Girona
  • Day 5: [Overnight or Day] Trip to Montserrat
  • Day 6: [Overnight or Day] Trip to Tarragona

Getting around: I did this trip by train and found it all very convenient. You can use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times for public transport, or alternatively consider renting a car for more flexibility in your sightseeing.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Bulgari-YEAH!’ 1 Week Bulgaria Itinerary

Places Covered: Sofia, Plovdiv, Seven Rila Lakes, Veliko Tarnovo

I will forever consider Bulgaria one of the most underrated gems in Europe. If you’re looking to spend a week in Europe a bit more off the beaten path, then Bulgaria is an excellent choice. The following 1 week itinerary blends city bustle in Sofia with historic sights and beautiful nature in Rila, along with Veliko Tarnovo, one of my favourite little towns in all of Europe.

Here’s how to spend a week in Bulgaria:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Sofia, Overnight in Sofia
  • Day 2: Explore Sofia, Overnight in Sofia
  • Day 3: Day trip to Plovdiv and the Rila Monastery, Overnight in Sofia
  • Day 4: Day trip to the Seven Rila Lakes, Overnight in Sofia
  • Day 5: Go to Veliko Tarnovo, Overnight in Veliko Tarnovo
  • Day 6: Overnight in Veliko Tarnovo

Getting around: This trip is easily doable with a combination of buses and guided tours. Of course, if you want more freedom with the day trips, having a car is ideal, but not mandatory. I did everything without driving and was fine!

Want to read more about Bulgaria? Check out these posts:

  • Unique and Fun Things to do in Bulgaria (That You Can’t Do Anywhere Else!)
  • An Insider Guide to Sofia

Rila Monastery in Bulgaria

The ‘Croatian Classic’ 1 Week Southern Croatia Itinerary

Places Covered: Dubrovnik, Korcula, Hvar, Split, Optional Day Trip to Krka Waterfalls

Croatia is an epic country with a lot of ground to cover, but for many tourists, the idyllic islands and cities of Southern Croatia are the ones that call their name. If that’s the case, here is an adapted version of the itinerary I did while sailing with MedSailors . It combines historic cities like Dubrovnik and Split with beautiful islands like Korcula and of course, a pinch of party perfection in Hvar.

Here’s how to spend a week in Southern Croatia:

  • Day 1:  Arrive in Dubrovnik, Overnight in Dubrovnik
  • Day 2:  Explore Dubrovnik, Overnight in Dubrovnik
  • Day 3: Korcula, Overnight in Korcula
  • Day 4:  Hvar, Overnight in Hvar
  • Day 5:  Split, Overnight in Split
  • Day 6:  Explore Split OR Day Trip to Krka Waterfalls, Overnight in Split
  • Day 7:  Explore Split + Departure

NOTE: Mljet is a gorgeous stop between Dubrovnik and Korcula that I highly recommend, but it might not be doable if you’re trying to squeeze all these sights into a week. If you’re not big into partying and prefer nature, then I might remove Hvar from this itinerary and go to Mljet instead.

Want to read more about Croatia? Check out these posts:

  • Unique and Fun Things to do in Zagreb
  • What to Pack for a Croatia Sailing Trip
  • MedSailors Review: My Experience Sailing Through Croatia

WOW absolutely stunning photos from Croatia! These photos prove why Croatia should be on your bucket list (and provides inspiration for where to go in Croatia too). #Croatia #Europe #Travel #Photography

The ‘Irish You Were Here’ 1 Week Ireland City Break Itinerary 

Places Covered: Dublin, Athlone, Galway, Cliffs of Moher, Belfast, Giant’s Causeway

Spending only one week in Ireland is tough, because this country (while small) is packed end to end with incredible sights that you’ll want to add to your itinerary! That’s why I’ve presented two Irish options – this first one which is more city break oriented and doable by train, and a second one below that’s more fast-paced and suited for a road trip where you want to see it all!

Here’s how to spend a week in Ireland (with a focus on city breaks):

  • Day 1: Arrive in Dublin, Overnight in Dublin
  • Day 2: Overnight in Dublin
  • Day 3: Drive to Galway, stopping in Athlone to visit the world’s oldest pub, Overnight in Galway
  • Day 4: Day trip to Cliffs of Moher, overnight in Galway
  • Day 5: Drive to Belfast, Overnight in Belfast
  • Day 6: Giant’s Causeway Day Trip, Overnight in Belfast

Getting around: While a car is ideal for exploring Ireland (especially if you want to see many of the country’s top natural sights), this Irish city break itinerary can be done with a combination of trains and paid day tours.

So much yes! This is the best guide out there for travel bloggers hoping to pitch brands for complimentary hotels, trips and more. A list of must-know tips for any aspiring travel blogger.

The “Emerald Isle Be Back” 1 Week Ireland Itinerary

Places Covered: Dublin, Cork, Cobh, Kinsale, Blarney Castle, Dingle Peninsula (or Ring of Kerry), Cliffs of Moher, Galway

So you want to road trip Ireland and take in more natural landscapes than cities? Here’s a one week itinerary that’s a lot more fast-paced than the one above, but will ensure you get your fill of Ireland’s most iconic sights.

NOTE: This is an itinerary I haven’t completed in full, but rather one I drafted up when I was first deciding how to spend my time in Ireland! Since we wanted to cover more of Northern Ireland with our limited time, we ended up scrapping this itinerary and going for one closer to the one above. Nonetheless, if it’s your goal to experience Ireland’s most famous highlights, then here is a (very fast-paced) way to do it!

Here’s how to spend a week in Ireland road tripping:

  • Day 2: Explore Dublin, drive to Cork, overnight in Cork
  • Day 3: Explore Cork & nearby sights like Cobh, Kinsale & Blarney Castle, Overnight in Cork
  • Day 4: Drive to Dingle, Explore the area, Overnight in Dingle
  • Day 5: Drive around either the Dingle Peninsula or the Ring of Kerry, Overnight in Dingle
  • Day 6: Drive to Galway, stopping at the Cliffs of Moher for the day, Overnight in Galway
  • Day 7: Explore Galway + Departure

Getting around: A car is a must for this 1 week Ireland itinerary. If this will be an issue for you and you’d prefer to use public transport, then the other ‘Irish You Were Here’ itinerary above will likely be a better choice.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Icelandic Dream’ 1 Week Iceland Itinerary 

Places Covered: Reykjavik, Golden Circle, Vatnajökull National Park, Eastfjords, Vatnsnes Peninsula, Snaefellsnes Peninsula

Of all the trips I’ve ever done, road tripping around Iceland’s Ring Road is among the most memorable. If you’re looking for a nature-packed week in Europe, then Iceland is a wonderful option that will absolutely take your breath away. This itinerary crams many of Iceland’s most famous sights into a week… and yes, it’s fast-paced but very, very worth it.

Here’s how to spend a week in Iceland:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Reykjavik, Overnight in Reykjavik
  • Day 2: Golden Circle (Gullfoss, Geysir Geothermal Area & Thingvellir National Park), Seljalandsfoss, Skogafoss & Vik, Overnight in Vik
  • Day 3: Vatnajökull National Park Highlights (e.g. Jökulsárlón, Diamond Beach), Svartifoss, Overnight in Höfn
  • Day 4: Eastfjords Highlights (e.g. Seyðisfjarðarkirkja, Hengifoss) & Diamond Circle Highlights (Mývatn & Dettifoss), Goðafoss, Overnight in Akureyri
  • Day 5: Vatnsnes Peninsula Highlights (Hvítserkur, Kolugljúfur Canyon) 
  • Day 6: Snaefellsnes Peninsula Highlights (Kirkjusfellfoss, Búðakirkja, Djúpalónssandur Black Beach, Svörtuloft Lighthouse), Overnight in Borgarnes
  • Day 7: Return to Reykjavik, Blue Lagoon if time permits, Departure

Getting around: Having a car is a must for this 1 week itinerary, preferably a camper van for optimal flexibility! This is how I did my trip in Iceland and wouldn’t have done it any other way.

Want to read more about Iceland? Check out these posts:

  • The Best Places to Visit in Iceland

Absolutely incredible Iceland pictures that will inspire you to visit! 31 amazing examples of Iceland photography and solid inspiration for you to travel to Northern Europe and Iceland. #Iceland #Europe #Travel #Photography

The ‘Awesome Alsace’ 1 Week Alsace (France) Itinerary

Places Covered: Strasbourg, Obernai, Ribeauvillé, Riquevir, Colmar, Kaysersberg-Vignoble, Eguisheim, Mulhouse, Basel (Optional)

Alsace is a French region that is (in my opinion) one of the prettiest, most fairytale-esque places in the world. Oozing with charm no matter the season, Alsace is an ideal place to visit in Europe for a week whether for Christmas markets or winery-hopping.

The itinerary below is PACKED with locations, but keep in mind the smaller towns included are quite tiny and don’t offer many activities besides strolling around, enjoying the atmosphere and sampling wine until you’re dizzy.

NOTE: I’ve squeezed in an optional day trip to Basel because it’s a cool and awesome city so close to Mulhouse, they share an airport. You might want to skip this though in favour of more time in Mulhouse, depending on how many things you want to do there.

Here’s how to spend a week in Alsace:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Strasbourg, Overnight in Strasbourg
  • Day 2: Day trip to Obernai, Overnight in Strasbourg
  • Day 3: Drive to Colmar, stopping at Ribeauvillé & Riquevir along the way, Overnight in Colmar
  • Day 4: Explore Colmar and do a half-day trip to Kaysersberg-Vignoble, Overnight in Colmar
  • Day 5: Drive to Mulhouse, stopping at Eguisheim along the way, Overnight in Mulhouse
  • Day 6: Optional Day trip to Basel, Overnight in Mulhouse

Getting around: A car really is a must if you want to visit a lot of the region’s charming small towns easily. That said, I’ve purposefully made all the overnight stays on this itinerary accessible by train, so you could potentially still base yourself in these spots and book some day tours to see the smaller towns.

Want to read more about France? Check out these posts:

  • 10+ Amazing Places To Visit In France (Besides Paris)
  • The Best Places to Visit in Alsace
  • The Most Amazing Christmas Markets in Alsace
  • A Guide to Christmas In Strasbourg
  • A Delightful Guide To Colmar’s Christmas Market
  • 100+ Helpful Paris Travel Tips & Tricks
  • 50+ Fun & Free Things To Do In Paris
  • 20+ Disneyland Paris Tips For First-Timers

Petite Venise area of Colmar France

The ’Slovenian S’Lovin’ 1 Week Slovenia Itinerary

Places Covered: Ljubljana, Lake Bled, Lake Bohinj, Piran, Postojna Cave & Predjama Castle (Optional)

While not as popular with overseas visitors as some of its neighbours, Slovenia has a ton to offer, from epic castles and pristine lakes to cool, historic cities. The following one week itinerary will give you a little taste of all those highlights, with just enough awesomeness to leave you plotting your return.

NOTE: Postojna Cave and Predjama Castle are both very popular Slovenian attractions located about midway between Piran and Ljubljana. If you’re driving, you could probably do them en route between these destinations, or otherwise squeeze them in as day trips if you wish.

  • Day 1: Land in Ljubljana, Overnight in Ljubljana
  • Day 2: Explore Ljubljana, Overnight in Ljubljana
  • Day 3: Take bus or train to Lake Bled (1.5h), Overnight at Lake Bled
  • Day 4: Explore Lake Bled, Day or Overnight Trip to Lake Bohinj
  • Day 5: Head to Piran, Optional Stop at Postojna Cave and Predjama Castle en Route, Explore Piran, Overnight in Piran
  • Day 6: Explore Piran, Overnight in Piran

Getting around: A car would be ideal for this trip, but it would also be possible to use a combination of trains/buses to get around. I’d recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times.

Want to read more about Slovenia? Check out these posts:

  • Hyperlocal Glamping In Slovenia: Soaking In The Big Berry Experience
  • The Beauty Of Lake Bohinj, Slovenia: Where To Get The Best View
  • Chasing Sunrise At Lake Bled: Getting The Best Views With The Ojstrica Hike

How to get the BEST view of Lake Bled, Slovenia at sunrise. This guide shows you how to hike to this gorgeous viewpoint of Lake Bled and gives you practical advice on how to find the trail head and more!

The ‘Mullin’ Round Malta’ 1 Week Malta Itinerary

Places Covered: Valletta, Three Cities, Mdina, Popeye Village, Gozo, Comino

Malta is one of those rare destinations that combines sunny beach resorts with jawdropping historical sights and quirky attractions, all in one affordable package. I’ve been there twice now and dream constantly of going back! The following Malta itinerary is definitely more of a culture break than a “laze in the sun” vacation, but it brings together some Maltese highlights that I’m sure you’ll love.

Here’s how to spend a week in Malta: 

  • Day 1: Arrive in Valletta, Overnight in Valletta
  • Day 2: Explore Valletta, take a boat to the Three Cities, Overnight in Valletta
  • Day 3: Day trip to Mdina, Overnight in Valletta
  • Day 4: Head to Gozo, stop at Popeye Village along the way, Overnight in Gozo
  • Day 5: Explore Gozo, Overnight in Gozo
  • Day 6:  Day trip to Comino, Overnight in Gozo
  • Day 7: Return to Valletta

Getting around: While a car would be ideal if you want to explore more places around Malta, it would be possible to do this itinerary relying only on Malta’s extensive bus network.

Want to read more about Malta? Check out these posts:

  • Inside Popeye Village: Malta’s Most Surprising Attraction
  • The Ultimate Game Of Thrones Guide To Malta: A Bucket List!
  • 12 Gorgeous Places To Visit In Malta For Film & TV Lovers

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Portu-please’ 1 Week Portugal Itinerary

Places Covered: Lisbon, Porto, Sintra

Portugal has a little something for everyone, whether you’re itching to laze on a beach, cram in some culture, or eat until you food coma. Well, if you’re visiting Portugal and want to squeeze in as much culture as possible, here is a city-centric Portugal itinerary that will give you a taste of the country’s most famous sights!

Here’s how to spend a week in Portugal with a focus on culture and history:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Lisbon, Overnight in Lisbon
  • Day 2: Arrive in Lisbon, Overnight in Lisbon
  • Day 3: [Day or Overnight] Trip to Sintra (I highly recommend staying the night to avoid other day tripping crowds)
  • Day 4: Take the train to Porto, Overnight in Porto
  • Day 5: Explore Porto, Overnight in Porto
  • Day 6: Explore Porto or Day Trip to the Douro Valley, Overnight in Porto
  • Day 7: Return to Lisbon

NOTE: There are a LOT of wonderful palaces and castles in Sintra to visit, so if you are interested in seeing more of those, I might even recommend two nights in Sintra and then cutting one night from Porto (which is a relatively small city and easy to cover in 2 days).

Getting around: This itinerary is doable either by car or by train (which is what I did). Check out the Portuguese National Railway site for more info.

Want to read more about Portugal? Check out these posts:

  • 12 Enchanting Sintra Castles & Palaces You Must Visit
  • Visit Lisbon Like A Smartie: 9 Silly Mistakes You MUST Avoid

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Beach, Portu-Please” Culture and Sun 1 Week Portugal Itinerary

Places Covered: Lisbon, the Algarve, and Sintra (Optional)

Looking to enjoy some of Portugal’s famous coastline during your week in Europe? If you want equal doses of culture and beachy downtime while visiting Portugal, then this Portuguese itinerary might be more your speed, combining days in the country’s capital along with some lazy days in the famous Algarve region. 

Here’s how to spend a week in Portugal with a mix of culture and beaches:

  • Day 2: Explore Lisbon, Overnight in Lisbon
  • Day 3: Explore Lisbon or Day trip to Sintra, Overnight in Lisbon
  • Day 4: Bus or train to Lagos, Overnight in Lagos
  • Day 5: Explore Lagos + Boat Cruise to Ponta da Piedade, Overnight in Lagos
  • Day 6: Explore Lagos OR a Day Trip to either Silves or the Benagil Caves, Overnight in Lagos

Getting around: This itinerary is doable either by car or by public transport (which is what I did).

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Dolo-Mighty’ 1 Week Northern Italy Itinerary

Places Covered: Trento, Rovereto, Lago di Tenno, Bressanone / Brixen, Lago di Carezzo, Seceda, Lago di Braies / Pragser Wildsee, Misurina, Tre Cime di Lavaredo

Italy is one of my favourite countries in the world because of its diversity of attractions, and I think Northern Italy’s rugged mountains may be one of the best travel surprises I’ve ever had. For a long time, I only thought of Italy as historic cities and Mediterranean coastline, but (as you’ll see in this itinerary), Italy is home to some jawdropping natural landscapes too.

Here’s how to spend a week in Northern Italy exploring the Dolomites:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Trento, Explore Trento, Overnight in Trento
  • Day 2: Day trip to Rovereto and Lago di Tenno, Overnight in Trento
  • Day 3: Drive to Bressanone / Brixen, stopping at Lago di Carezzo along the way, Overnight in Bressanone / Brixen
  • Day 4: Seceda, Overnight in Bressanone / Brixen
  • Day 5: Drive to Lago di Braies & explore the area, Overnight in Misurina
  • Day 6: Lake Misurina & Tre Cime di Lavaredo Hike, Overnight in Misurina

Getting around: This 1 week Europe itinerary for Northern Italy very much requires a car, as heading to all these different spots is nearly impossible if relying solely on public transport.

Want to read more about Italy? Check out these posts:

  • Buying Last Supper Tickets In Milan: An Easy Step By Step Guide!
  • 40 Things To Do In Milan, Italy (For All Travel Types!)
  • 20+ Unique & Fun Things To Do In Sorrento, Italy
  • 17 Delightful Things To Do In Burano, Italy (In One Day)
  • How To Get From Venice To Burano, The World’s Most Colourful Village
  • Things To Do In Genoa: Two Days Among Movies And Culture
  • 11 Bologna Food Experiences You Need To Try: A Bologna Foodie Bucket List
  • Visit Bologna Like A Smartie: 19 Mistakes To Avoid On Your 1st Bologna Trip
  • A Guide To Delightful Rovereto, Italy
  • Why Visit Trentino: The Best Part Of Italy You’ve Never Heard Of

Absolutely stunning photos of the Dolomites in Italy! This post is travel inspiration at its finest, inspiring you to travel to Italy, travel to Europe and beyond! #italy #europe #travel #photography

The ‘Great Ligurian Love’ 1 Week Italy Itinerary

Places Covered: Genoa, Portofino or Camogli, the Cinque Terre (Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza & Monterosso al Mare)

In my university dorm days, I used to sleep with a postcard of Cinque Terre taped above my bed, so it shouldn’t surprise you that this is one of my favourite parts of Italy!

The following one week itinerary focuses on Liguria, with a combination of city & culture in Genoa and of course plenty of gorgeous coastline and relaxation in Portofino and the famous Cinque Terre.

NOTE: I chose Manarola as the base for the Cinque Terre portion of this trip, but this Liguria itinerary can easily be adapted to suit whichever town you prefer to stay in. I’ve stayed in Manarola twice though and can highly recommend it!

Here is how to spend one week in Liguria:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Genoa, Overnight in Genoa
  • Day 2: Explore Genoa, Overnight in Genoa
  • Day 3: Day Trip to Portofonio or Camogli, Overnight in Genoa
  • Day 4: Take the train to Manarola, Overnight in Manarola
  • Day 5: Day Trip to Riomaggiore & Corniglia, Overnight in Manarola
  • Day 6: Day Trip to Vernazza & Monterosso al Mare, Overnight in Manarola

Getting around: The best way to do this trip is hands down by train. You can use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times, or book directly with Trenitalia . Once in the Cinque Terre, I highly recommend getting a Cinque Terre card which will give you unlimited train travel + access to hiking trails.

Want to read more about Liguria? Check out these posts:

  • Things To Do In Cinque Terre: The Ultimate Bucket List
  • Where To Eat In Manarola, Cinque Terre
  • A Corniglia Accommodation Guide For Every Budget
  • A Riomaggiore Accommodation Guide For Every Budget
  • A Vernazza Accommodation Guide For Every Budget
  • A Monterosso Accommodation Guide For Every Budget
  • A Manarola Accommodation Guide For Every Budget

WOW - amazing photo guide to Cinque Terre, Italy, one of the most beautiful places in the world. If you are planning a trip to Italy or plan to travel to Cinque Terre, you need to see these incredible photos! #italy #cinqueterre

The ‘Itali-in Love’ 1 Week Italy Itinerary

Places Covered: Venice, Florence, Rome, Optional stops in Murano, Burano and Pisa

If it’s Italy’s “Greatest Hits” you’re after, this one week Italy itinerary is for you. With Venice, Florence and Rome all in the mix, this fast-paced and ambitious schedule combines Italy’s most visited destinations. If at all possible, I’d recommend stretching this itinerary over 10 days instead so you can explore each city more thoroughly, but with only a week in Europe, this itinerary is doable too, even if it’s exhausting.

Here’s how to spend (a very busy) week in Italy:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Venice, Overnight in Venice
  • Day 2: Explore Venice and/or half-day trip to Burano/Murano, Overnight in Venice
  • Day 3: Take the train to Florence (2h w/ high speed train), Overnight in Florence
  • Day 4: Explore Florence and/or half-day trip to Pisa, Overnight in Florence
  • Day 5: Take the train to Rome (Under 2h w/ high speed train), Overnight in Rome
  • Day 6: Explore Rome
  • Day 7 : Departure

Getting around: Train is a great option for getting around Italy, and when taking the high speed trains, it can even be faster than driving. I recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times, or booking directly with Trenitalia .

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Coast and Culture’ 1 Week Italy Itinerary

Places Covered: Rome, Pompeii, Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast

For a combination of coastlines and culture, here is a one week Italy itinerary that I can recommend. I did a variation of this during my 1st backpacking trip in Europe (read my full 1.5 month Europe backpacking itinerary for more) and really enjoyed it. With Rome, Pompeii, and the Amalfi Coast all included, this itinerary combines many of the things that make Italy such a fascinating destination.

NOTE : You might notice I didn’t include Naples in this itinerary and that’s because I haven’t properly explored it for myself! You do need to connect in Naples between Rome and Sorrento though, so if you want to schedule some time there (for pizza and whatnot), then that’s easily doable.

  • Day 1:  Arrive in Rome, Overnight in Rome
  • Day 2:  Explore Rome, Overnight in Rome
  • Day 3:  Explore Rome, Overnight in Rome
  • Day 4: Take the train to Sorrento, Explore Sorrento
  • Day 5:  Day trip to Positano (and/or other Amalfi Coast towns)
  • Day 6:  Day trip to Pompeii (and/or other Amalfi Coast towns)
  • Day 7:  Departure

Colourful houses in Positano as seen from the water

The ‘Anda-Lose Yourself’ 1 Week Southern Spain Itinerary

Places Covered: Seville, Córdoba, Granada, Ronda

Southern Spain is magic on Earth – truly.

And while the cities of Andalucia are certainly no secret, there are still many hidden gems to explore in the region, like the Sierra de Aracena for example.

If you’re looking for an “Andalucia” highlights tour though, here is a fast-paced itinerary that will allow you to see all the main sights in the area (although you’ll definitely be exhausted by the end of it!)

NOTE: If you are looking for a more low-key vacation, then I’d recommend trading some of the destinations below in favour of some time in Huelva and the Sierra de Aracena.

Here’s how to spend a week in Southern Spain:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Seville, Overnight in Seville
  • Day 2: Explore Seville, Overnight in Seville
  • Day 3: Go to Córdoba, Explore the city, Overnight in Córdoba
  • Day 4: Go to Granada, Explore Granada, Overnight in Granada
  • Day 5: Go to Ronda, Overnight in Ronda
  • Day 6: Explore Ronda, Overnight in Ronda

Getting around: I would definitely recommend a car for this trip, but you can get between cities quite easily by train/bus. I recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times,

Want to read more about Spain? Check out these posts:

  • The Absolute Best Things to do in Barcelona
  • My 50+ Best Barcelona Travel Tips
  • Unique and Fun Things to do in Lanzarote
  • Unique and Fun Things to do in Tarragona

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Perfectly Parisian’ 1 Week Paris Region Itinerary

Places Covered: Paris, Versailles, Optional Day Trips to Giverny and Disneyland Paris

Most visitors who come to Paris attempt to tackle all its sights in just a few days, which is a sure recipe for burnout. Trust me, if you have a week to spend in Paris – take it! From the dreamy romance of Montmartre to all the wonderful free things to do in Paris at your disposal, one week is a great amount of time to spend in the Paris region. 

Of course, if you get bored, you can easily take advantage of one of the many excellent day trips from Paris. Here is a suggested itinerary for you below:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Paris, Explore Paris, Overnight in Paris
  • Day 2: Explore Paris, Overnight in Paris
  • Day 3: Explore Paris, Overnight in Paris
  • Day 4: Day trip to Versailles
  • Day 5: Explore Paris OR Day Trip to Giverny, Overnight in Paris
  • Day 6: Explore Paris OR Overnight / Day Trip to Disneyland Paris 

Getting around: When in Paris, using the Metro is the best way to get around (besides walking of course). I recommend getting a “Carnet” of 10 Metro Tickets to save big. For day trips, they’re all doable by train and you can use Omio to find the cheapest deals/times.

Want to read more about Paris? Check out these posts:

  • 100+ Helpful Paris Travel Tips
  • 50+ Free Things to do in Paris
  • Things to do in Montmartre
  • Paris to Disneyland Day Trip Guide
  • 20+ Disneyland Paris Tips for First Timers
  • Hidden Gems & Secrets at Disneyland Paris

Typical Parisian street with the Eiffel Tower in the background with a pink sunset

The ‘Czeching Off the Bucket List’ 1 Week Czechia Itinerary

Places Covered: Prague, Cesky Krumlov

Prague is a common stop on most European trips, but if you only have a week to spend in Europe, I highly recommend focusing on Czechia alone and visiting other amazing sights nearby.

This Czechia itinerary combines time in Prague with other lovely sights around South Bohemia, a region I absolutely adore.

Here’s how to spend a week in Czechia:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Prague, Overnight in Prague
  • Day 2: Explore Prague, Overnight in Prague
  • Day 3: Explore Prague or day trip to Kutná Hora, Overnight in Prague
  • Day 4: Take the train or bus to Cesky Krumlov, Overnight in Cesky Krumlov
  • Day 5: Explore Cesky Krumlov, Overnight in Cesky Krumlov
  • Day 6: Day Trip to České Budějovice & Hluboká Castle

Want to read more about Czechia? Check out these posts:

  • The Most Magical Places in South Bohemia 
  • A Guide to Cesky Krumlov
  • Fun Things To Do In Prague For Young Adults
  • A Visit To Prague’s Christmas Markets – Worth The Hype?

Getting around: Having a car would be handy for the South Bohemia portion of this itinerary, but you could definitely get around with local buses as well.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Perfect Potterhead’ 1 Week UK Itinerary

Places Covered: London, Oxford, Edinburgh

If you’re obsessed with Harry Potter and only have a week to spend in Europe, this is the itinerary you need in your life.

It combines all the nerdiest Harry Potter must-dos in the UK, from visiting the real studio where all the HP movies were filmed to riding the Hogwarts Express in real life!

  • Day 1: Arrive in London, Overnight in London
  • Day 2: Day trip to Warner Bros Studio Tour & Oxford (you can book this day tour from London), Overnight in London
  • Day 3: Explore London (check out my Harry Potter in London bucket list ), or Day Trip to Lacock
  • Day 4: Take the train to Edinburgh (4h for the quickest ones), Overnight in Edinburgh
  • Day 5: Explore Edinburgh or Day Trip to Alnwick Castle , Overnight in Edinburgh
  • Day 6: Day trip to ride the “Hogwarts Express” & explore the Scottish Highlands, Overnight in Edinburgh

Getting around: Getting around by train is fairly doable for most parts of this one week European itinerary, apart from some of the day trips which would be easier with a car or with a guided tour. I recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times.

Want to read more about Harry Potter travel? Check out these posts:

  • The Ultimate Guide To Visiting Hogwarts In Real Life
  • How to Visit the Warner Bros Studio Tour (Harry Potter Tour) in England
  • 60+ Magical Places In Harry Potter You Can Visit IRL
  • 20+ Harry Potter Filming Locations In London to Visit
  • A Very Potter Guide to Durham Cathedral
  • A Very Potter Guide to London: Experiences You Can’t Miss
  • A Very Potter Guide to Lacock: Filming Locations & More

The Christchurch College Great Hall in Oxford

The ‘GoT Fanatic’ 1 Week Northern Ireland Itinerary

Places Covered: Belfast & all sorts of nerdy Game of Thrones filming locations in Northern Ireland

If you’re a Game of Thrones fan with only a week to spend in Europe, then this might be the itinerary you’re looking for. This one week itinerary packs together all the most important GoT sights and attractions in Northern Ireland, and is a trip that I guarantee will make you cry happy nerd tears.

To make this Northern Ireland itinerary public transport friendly, or to simply minimize moving around, you can stay in Belfast as a base the entire time and simply do day tours to various Game of Thrones locations.

NOTE: The following itinerary is very much made for Game of Thrones fanatics, so omits Derry/Londonderry because GoT never filmed there. If you have some extra time though, I do recommend trying to make it there because it’s a lovely place to visit!

  • Day 1: Arrive in Belfast, Overnight in Strangford (at the Cuan , where cast members stayed in Season 1 and where you can book a GoT banquet!)
  • Day 2: Visit GoT locations south of Strangford, e.g. Tollymore Forest Park, Inch Abbey & Castle Ward, Overnight in Strangford
  • Day 3: Explore Belfast, Overnight in Belfast 
  • Day 4: Visit GoT locations north of Belfast, e.g. The Dark Hedges, Cushenden Caves, Overnight in Belfast
  • Day 5: Drive to Ballintoy, stopping in GoT locations like Murlough Bay, Larrybane Quarry, and non GoT landmarks like Giant’s Causeway and the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, Overnight at Ballintoy (the Fullerton Arms has lots of fun GoT stuff)
  • Day 6: Visit GoT locations west of Ballintoy e.g. Downhill Beach, Dunluce Castle and Portstewart Strand, Overnight in Ballintoy
  • Day 7: Return to Belfast

Getting around: We did this trip by car, and I would say that having a car is a must if you want to visit as many Game of Thrones locations as possible.

Want to read more about Game of Thrones travel? Check out these posts:

  • The Game Of Thrones to Northern Ireland
  • The Game of Thrones Guide To Belfast
  • The Game Of Thrones Guide to Morocco
  • The Game Of Thrones Guide To Malta
  • Game Of Thrones Touring Exhibition: Insider Photos And Honest Review!

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Before Midnight Special’ 1 Week Southern Peloponnese (Greece) Itinerary

Places Covered: Kalamata, Messini, Pilos, Kardamyli, Mystras (Optional)

Superfans of the famous “Before” trilogy will love this special Greece itinerary which brings together ALL the filming locations seen in Before Midnight . Besides film nerd points though, this itinerary is also a great way to explore the Peloponnese – combining historical ruins with adorable little towns and of course, the famous sun-drenched coastline.

Here’s how to spend a week in the Southern Peloponnese:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Kalamata, Overnight at The Westin Resort Costa Navarino (the hotel from the movie!)
  • Day 2: Visit the ruins of Messini, Overnight at The Westin Resort Costa Navarino
  • Day 3: Visit Pilos & Methoni Castle, Overnight at The Westin Resort Costa Navarino
  • Day 4: Drive to Kardamyli, Overnight in Kardamyli
  • Day 5: Visit the Patrick and Joan Leigh Fermor House, Overnight in Kardamyli
  • Day 6: Optional Day trip to Mystras, Overnight in Kardamyli
  • Day 7: Return to Kalamata

Getting around: This would be a trip best done with a car. I can’t imagine how it would be possible to do all these locations in a week if relying on public transport.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Lithu-yay-nia’ 1 Week Lithuania Itinerary 

Places Covered: Vilnius, Trakai, Kaunas, Siauliai

As far as European travel destinations go, I find Lithuania SO underrated! I travelled to Vilnius for the first time a few years ago and absolutely fell in love with the hearty food, lovely architecture and super fun vibe thanks to the city’s vibrant cafe & craft brewing culture. If you’re looking to spend your week in Europe in a less touristy gem, I can highly recommend Lithuania.

Here’s how to spend a week in Lithuania:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Vilnius, Overnight in Vilnius
  • Day 2: Overnight in Vilnius
  • Day 3: Day trip to Trakai, Overnight in Vilnius
  • Day 4: Overnight in Kaunas
  • Day 5: Overnight in Kaunas
  • Day 6: Day or Overnight trip to Siauliai
  • Day 7: Return to Vilnius

Getting around: Travelling around Lithuania is very convenient and affordable by bus.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘North Macedoni-Yeah!’ 1 Week North Macedonia Itinerary

Places Covered: Skopje, Matka Canyon, Lake Ohrid, Bitola

For another European destination a bit more off the beaten path, I can highly recommend a visit to North Macedonia – by far one of the most surprising places I’ve encountered in my travels.

This North Macedonia itinerary combines a bit of everything – from the unique city atmosphere of Skopje and Bitola to glorious natural gems like Matka Canyon and Lake Ohrid.

Here’s how to spend a week in North Macedonia:

  • Day 1:  Arrive in Skopje, Overnight in Skopje
  • Day 2:  Explore Skopje, Overnight in Skopje
  • Day 3:  Drive to Lake Ohrid, but stop at Matka Canyon for a Day Trip Along the Way, Overnight in Ohrid
  • Day 4:  Lake Ohrid, Overnight in Ohrid
  • Day 5:  Lake Ohrid, Overnight in Ohrid
  • Day 6:  Drive to Bitola, Explore Bitola, Overnight in Bitola
  • Day 7:  Explore Bitola + Departure

Getting around: We did this trip with a car (and I think having one would make your life infinitely easier), but buses are a good option for getting between the main cities, and many tours can be booked for the recommended day trips.

trip ideas to europe

2 Country, 1 Week Europe Itineraries 

If you want to expand your horizons beyond just a single country, here are some ideas for 1 week Europe itineraries that take you to two countries… meaning of course double the culture, food & fun opportunities.

‘Yes We Cannes’ – 1 Week Monaco and Southern France Itinerary

Places Visited: Nice, Cannes, Menton, Monaco

The French Riviera is one of my all-time favourite travel destinations, with gorgeous towns, stunning coastlines and unbeatable weather. The following itinerary will allow you to check both Southern France & Monaco off your bucket list… but trust me, you’ll definitely want to come back for more.

So, here’s how to spend a week in Southern France & Monaco:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Nice, Overnight in Nice
  • Day 2: Explore Nice, Overnight in Nice
  • Day 3: Day Trip to Cannes, Overnight in Nice
  • Day 4: Go to Menton (40 min by train), Overnight in Menton
  • Day 5: Explore Menton, Overnight in Menton
  • Day 6: Day Trip to Monaco (here are my top budget-friendly things to do in Monaco ), Overnight in Menton

Getting around: All the destinations in this 1 week Europe itinerary are very close together, so you’ll have no trouble getting around by bus or train. I’d recommend using Omio to find the best options. 

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Europa Classic’ – 1 Week Paris and London Itinerary 

Places Visited: Paris, London, Optional Day Trips to Versailles or Disneyland Paris

If it’s your first time in Europe and iconic cities are what you’re after, there’s no better combo than Paris and London, who are conveniently linked by the EuroStar.

This itinerary brings you to both world-famous capitals, with just enough time to see why they rank among the most popular capitals in the world to visit.

NOTE: This itinerary can easily be done the other way around.

So, here’s how to spend a week in London & Paris:

  • Day 2: Overnight in London
  • Day 3: Overnight in London
  • Day 4: Go to Paris (2.5h with EuroStar), Overnight in Paris
  • Day 5: Overnight in Paris
  • Day 6: Optional Day Trip to Disneyland Paris or Versailles, Overnight in Paris

Getting around: The EuroStar is the quickest option to get between Paris and London, although it’s definitely not the cheapest! I’d recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times and to explore all the possible options.

British flags in London with cars and buses on the road

The ‘Scandinavian Dream’ – 1 Week Copenhagen and Stockholm Itinerary

Places Visited: Copenhagen, Stockholm, Optional Day Trips to Uppsala and Malmö

Great food, awesome architecture, and a relaxed, laidback lifestyle are just a few reasons to put Scandinavia on your bucket list.

If you’re hankering for a fun city break, this itinerary combines two of Northern Europe’s most dynamic cities for a week long vacation you definitely won’t forget.

NOTE: You can easily do this either way round, and if you want something more fast-paced, consider adding Malmö or Gothenburg in between so you can see more!

So, here’s how to spend a week in Stockholm & Copenhagen:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Stockholm, Overnight in Stockholm
  • Day 2: Explore Stockholm, Overnight in Stockholm
  • Day 3: Optional day trip to Uppsala, Overnight in Stockholm
  • Day 4: Take the train to Copenhagen, Overnight in Copenhagen
  • Day 5: Explore Copenhagen, Overnight in Copenhagen
  • Day 6: Explore Copenhagen or Optional day trip to Malmö, Overnight in Copenhagen

Getting around: A direct high speed train between these cities will only take about 5.5 hours, whereas flying is only 1.5h. With commute/wait times added in, taking the train makes more sense than flying, although taking the bus will always be the cheapest option (about 10h without delays). You can use Omio to compare the different options to see what makes the most sense for your needs.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘Classical Beauty’ – 1 Week Dresden and Prague Itinerary

Places Visited: Dresden and Prague, Optional day trips to Český Krumlov & Saxon Switzerland National Park

If elegant architecture and historic cities are more your vibe, this city break combination ft. Dresden and Prague is one I can highly recommend.

These two cities are among the most beautiful in Europe, and are both filled with fascinating historical sights and museums. Pick this one week European itinerary and I promise you won’t regret it!

So, here’s how to spend a week in Prague & Dresden

  • Day 2: Overnight in Prague
  • Day 3: Explore Prague or optional day/overnight trip to Český Krumlov
  • Day 4: Take the bus to Dresden, Overnight in Dresden
  • Day 5: Explore Dresden, Overnight in Dresden
  • Day 6: Explore Dresden or Day Trip to Saxon Switzerland National Park, Overnight in Dresden

Getting around: Taking the bus between Dresden and Prague is convenient, affordable and relatively quick, with a journey time of just under 2h. I’d recommend checking your options on Omio , but I’ve done this route a few times with RegioJet and always had a good experience.

trip ideas to europe

‘Regal City Breaks’ – 1 Week Munich and Vienna Itinerary

Places Visited: Munich, Vienna, Optional: Neuschwanstein Castle and Salzburg

Munich + Vienna is another excellent city break combination if you’re looking for your fill of culture and gorgeous scenery.

The itinerary below also includes optional day trips to Neuschwanstein Castle (famous for inspiring Walt Disney) and Salzburg (where most of the Sound of Music was filmed).

So, here’s how to spend a week in Munich & Vienna:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Munich, Overnight in Munich
  • Day 2: Explore Munich, Overnight in Munich
  • Day 3: Optional Day Trip to Neuschwanstein Castle , Overnight in Munich
  • Day 4: Take train to Vienna (4h) OR go to Salzburg, spend the day, then take the train to Vienna, Overnight in Vienna
  • Day 5: Explore Vienna, Overnight in Vienna
  • Day 6: Explore Vienna, Overnight in Vienna

Getting around: Train travel is super convenient in this region, and I’d definitely recommend it over buses which can be more unpredictable (and subject to issues like traffic). I recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times.

trip ideas to europe

“Styria-sly Awesome” – 1 Week South Styria (Austria) and Slovenia Itinerary

Places Visited: Graz, Ljubljana, Lake Bled Optional stops in South Styria’s wine region and Maribor

Wine, nature, and culture come together in this awesome one week itinerary in Austria and Slovenia.

This trip combines the idyllic South Styrian region of Austria with Slovenia’s capital of Ljubljana, along with (arguably) its most famous attraction: Lake Bled. If it’s a more relaxing one week in Europe you’re looking for, this itinerary has a bit of everything, and definitely won’t disappoint.

NOTE: If you want to add one more stop into this 1 week itinerary, consider making a stop in Maribor which is along the way between Graz and Ljubljana.

So, here’s how to spend a week in South Styria & Slovenia:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Graz, Overnight in Graz
  • Day 3: Explore Graz or Day/Overnight Trip around the South Styrian wine region
  • Day 4: Take the bus to Ljubljana, Overnight in Ljubljana
  • Day 5: Explore Ljubljana, Overnight in Ljubljana
  • Day 6: Day or Overnight Trip to Lake Bled

Getting around: Having a car for this journey will give you the most flexibility, but the main stops (Graz and Ljubljana) are well connected by bus as well. The advantage of having a car though is you can easily visit the South Styrian wine region and Lake Bled at your own pace. Those wanting to still do those trips though can find day tours from the main cities.

trip ideas to europe

The ‘1 Week Skopje & Pristina Itinerary

Places Visited: Skopje, Matka Canyon, Pristina, Prizren

This may not be the most conventional European city break, but hear me out! Skopje and Pristina are two absolutely fascinating places to visit.

Skopje for instance offers one of the most eclectic mixes of architecture you’ll find in any capital ( it’s a long story ), with 300+ statues in the city center and a fascinating Ottoman Old Town, while Pristina has a thriving café & restaurant culture, along with unique landmarks like a library that ranks among the world’s ugliest buildings.

As a bonus, both top the rankings for cheapest capitals to visit in Europe , meaning this itinerary is possibly the most affordable one on the list.

So, here’s how to spend a week in Skopje & Pristina:

  • Day 3:  Day trip to Matka Canyon, Overnight in Skopje
  • Day 4:  Drive to Pristina, Overnight in Pristina
  • Day 5:  Explore Pristina, Overnight in Pristina
  • Day 6:  Day trip to Prizren, Overnight in Pristina

Getting around: We did this trip by car and would definitely recommend driving, although you’ll also find connections by bus.

The ‘Baltic Bliss’ – 1 Week Riga & Vilnius Itinerary

Places visited: Riga, Rundale Palace, Vilnius, Trakai

The Baltics are another region of Europe I find woefully underrated, and this itinerary will allow you to see exactly why I feel that way! Riga and Vilnius are two awesome capitals with plenty to explore, from Riga’s glorious art nouveau scene to Vilnius’ many beautiful churches and awesome café culture.

So, here’s how to spend a week in Riga & Vilnius:

  • Day 1:  Arrive in Riga, Overnight in Riga
  • Day 2:  Explore Riga (here are my favourite things to do in Riga ), Overnight in Riga
  • Day 3:  Day trip to Rundale Palace, overnight in Riga
  • Day 4:  Take the bus to Vilnius, Overnight in Vilnius
  • Day 5:  Explore Vilnius, Overnight in Vilnius
  • Day 6:  Day trip to Trakai, Overnight in Vilnius

Getting around: You can easily get between these two cities by bus. A few different companies service this route but they all take about 4-5 hours. I’d recommend checking your options on Omio to see what works best for you.

trip ideas to europe

Unless you have the stamina of an Olympian, I wouldn’t advise trying to cram 3 countries into a single week in Europe… but hey, sometimes a week is all you have to work with, and you want to see it all!

If that sounds like you, here are some ambitious but doable itineraries that will ensure you get to see plenty in a short time!

“The Awesome Adriatic” -Dubrovnik, Mostar and Kotor 1 Week Itinerary

Places Visited: Dubrovnik, Mostar, Kotor

This trifecta of destinations is a popular route among backpackers and cruisers alike for its convenience and astounding beauty. If you’re looking for a combination of historic old towns and scenic nature, this is an amazing way to spend a week in Europe!

Here’s how to spend a week in Dubrovnik, Mostar & Kotor:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Dubrovnik, Overnight in Dubrovnik
  • Day 2: Explore Dubvrovnik, Overnight in Dubrovnik
  • Day 3: Take bus to Mostar, Overnight in Mostar
  • Day 4: Bosnia & Herzegovina Highlights Day Trip, Overnight in Mostar
  • Day 5: Take bus to Kotor, Overnight in Kotor
  • Day 6: Explore Kotor OR Day Trip to Perast, Overnight in Kotor 

Getting around: Bus is by far the easiest way to travel between these cities. There’s a lot of different local bus companies that will service these routes, and to be honest I just went to bus stations once I arrived to get my tickets since there didn’t seem to be many reliable options online. There will also be a lot of local transfer companies eager to drive you too if you’re looking for a private transfer.

Bosnia & Herzegovina is one of the most underrated countries in the world. There are so many beautiful must-sees and dos in Bosnia. Here is a post filled with stunning photos that will inspire your wanderlust!

“Drifting Down the Danube” – Vienna, Bratislava & Budapest 1 Week Itinerary

Places Covered: Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest

The Danube is the second longest river in Europe, flowing from the Black Forest to the Black Sea. Halfway (ish) through is where you’ll find a stretch connecting three of Europe’s prettiest capital cities: Vienna, Bratislava, and Budapest. The close distance between these three cities makes it perfect for a week long trip in Europe.

Here’s how to spend a week exploring Vienna, Bratislava, and Budapest:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Vienna, Overnight in VIenna
  • Day 2: Explore Vienna, Overnight in VIenna
  • Day 4: Take a bus or boat to Bratislava (About 1.5h), Overnight in Bratislava
  • Day 5 : Take a bus or train to Budapest (About 2.5h), Overnight in Budapest
  • Day 6: Explore Budapest, Overnight in Budapest

Getting around: Transportation between these three cities is super quick, easy, and cheap. You can use Omio to compare the different options, but overall a combination of buses, trains or even boat rides would be best.

trip ideas to europe

“The Benelux Express” – Amsterdam, Brussels & Luxembourg 1 Week Itinerary

Places Visited: Amsterdam, Brussels & Amsterdam

Benelux (despite sounding like an off-brand hand cream) in fact refers to Belgium, the Netherlands & Luxembourg – three small European countries with quick and convenient train connections that make spending a week there super easy and fun. That’s right – you can take a canal cruise in Amsterdam, gorge on waffles in Brussels, and visit fortresses in Luxembourg… all in a week!

Here’s how to plan for a week in Amsterdam, Brussels and Luxembourg:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Amsterdam, Overnight in Amsterdam
  • Day 2: Overnight in Amsterdam
  • Day 3: Overnight in Amsterdam
  • Day 4: Take the train to Brussels, Explore Brussels Overnight in Brussels
  • Day 5: Explore Brussels, take the train to Luxembourg City & Stay Overnight
  • Day 6:  Explore Luxembourg City (here are my top things to do in Luxembourg City ), Overnight in Luxembourg City

Getting around: The best way to get between these major cities is by train. I’d recommend using Omio to find the quickest and cheapest options.

trip ideas to europe

“The Alpine Dream” – Switzerland, Germany and Liechtenstein 1 Week Itinerary

Places Covered: Zurich, Vaduz, Munich

Hoping to check off Swiss chocolate, Bavarian beer, and the world’s 6th smallest country in a single trip? Well, this three country itinerary combines elegant Zurich with quirky Vaduz and gorgeous Munich for the ultimate city break trip through central Europe!

Here’s how to spend a week in Zurich, Vaduz & Munich:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Zurich, Overnight in Zurich
  • Day 2: Overnight in Zurich
  • Day 3: Take the train to Vaduz, Explore Vaduz, Overnight in Vaduz
  • Day 4: Explore Vaduz, take the train to Munich, Overnight in Munich
  • Day 5: Overnight in Munich
  • Day 6: Overnight in Munich

Getting around: This trip is easily doable with a combination of trains and/or buses. I’d recommend using Omio to find the cheapest deals/times.

A full list of world capitals, including photos for each city. If you're looking for a list of capital cities around the world, this is it! #Geography #Travel

The ‘Before Trilogy Special’ – 1 Week in Vienna, Paris & the Peloponnese

Places Covered: Vienna, Paris, around the Southern Peloponnese

If you’re a “Before” trilogy superfan, then this itinerary is for you! Trace the footsteps of the most iconic travel couple in cinematic history, Jesse and Céline, in this three country tour that includes stops in Vienna, Paris & the Peloponnese. This ambitious itinerary is only recommended for the most rabid of “Before” fans, but if that’s you, I promise you’ll love this trip.

Here’s how to spend the perfect “Before” week in Europe:

  • Day 1: Arrive in Vienna, Overnight in Vienna
  • Day 3: Fly to Paris, Overnight in Paris
  • Day 4: Explore Paris, Overnight in Paris
  • Day 5: Fly to Kalamata, Overnight at The Westin Resort Costa Navarino (the hotel from Before Midnight!)
  • Day 6: Drive to key Before Midnight locations like Messini, Pilos, Platsa & Kardamyli, Overnight at The Westin Resort Costa Navarino (the hotel from Before Midnight!)

Getting around: Since these three destinations are quite far apart, the only feasible option for getting between them quick enough for a 1 week itinerary is flying.

trip ideas to europe

I hope these 1 week itineraries for Europe were helpful!

Let me know in the comments if you have any more questions or itineraries to suggest. There’s a lot of Europe I have yet to cover, so feel free to throw your recommendations below.

My Go-To Travel Favourites:

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✈️ Google Flights : For finding flight deals

🌎 WorldNomads: For travel insurance

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1 thought on “40+ One Week Itineraries for Europe You’ll Want to Steal ASAP”

These plan are helpful. I wish I have that many “weeks” to spend on traveling, lol.

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Days to Come

Travelling Without a Passport

trip ideas to europe

30 Days in Europe: Travel Tips & Itinerary Ideas

Discover Europe in 30 days with our tips and itinerary ideas for a diverse and enriching adventure

A budget-friendly journey blending adventure and culture awaits

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Welcome, willkommen, bienvenue to Europe, one of the most diverse continents on the planet. Steeped in history, culture and tradition, Europe is famously abundant with art, antiquity, and ornate architecture –there’s good reason why the Grand Tour was a rite of passage for the 18th-century aristocracy– and a 30-day tour offers a chance to experience more than a brief snapshot of its character and beauty.

With 44 countries spanning nearly four million square miles (10m sq. km), Europe is a vast yet surprisingly connected continent. In a month, you can beach hop around the Mediterranean, trek through the Tatra Mountains, and see Amsterdam through Rembrandt’s lens with ease.

trip ideas to europe

Spending 30 days in Europe costs less than you think. While it’s relatively cheap and straightforward to fly between major cities, exploring by road or rail is the most popular – and best – way to see Europe. Whether you want to scale the lofty Eiffel Tower in Paris, explore Rome’s ancient Colosseum, or see the gargantuan dome of the Hagia Sofia in Istanbul, a well-thought-out itinerary can be accessible to all budgets. 

One of the most logical, convenient, and time-savvy ways to see Europe is on an organized adventure, where all the planning, logistics, and hard work is done for you. Whether you’re on a backpackers’ budget or want a once-in-a-lifetime holiday, here’s how to get the best out of Europe in just 30 days .

Top tips for planning your itinerary

1. don’t try to see everything.

Rome wasn’t built in a day. And Europe can’t be seen in a month, but you can scratch more than the surface on a 30-day traveling budget. Whether you want to tick off the top sights or spend your time more leisurely and get to know the vibe of a city, research, and planning is always the key to a successful trip. 

Feeling free and easy? Why not leave the itinerary to the professionals and book an organized adventure? With many trips starting in London, the adventures begin as soon as they hit the rails or road, traveling through key cities across Europe, including Barcelona, Amsterdam, Paris, Berlin, and Budapest.

trip ideas to europe

2. Schedule in plenty of downtime

So many cities, so little time can be the death knell of fun when you’re traveling. While it’s tempting to pack your 30 days in Europe to the brim, it’s important to remember it’s a holiday, not a challenge. Let go of the FOMO and factor in some downtime on the beach or in the mountains to rest and recharge.

The northern lights over water in Northern Norway

3. Pick your top destinations

Whether you want to island hop around Greece, bathe in Iceland’s Blue Lagoon or embark on a Game of Thrones pilgrimage to Dubrovnik, take time to choose what you really want to get out of your 30 days in Europe. Have a wish list as a baseline and work your itinerary and budget around it.

There are dozens of 30-day organized adventures available across Europe, many of which combine the big-hitting city stops like Amsterdam, Paris and Berlin, along with lesser-known destinations like Kotor, Tirana and Delphi.

A sailboat floating in the sea off the coast of Santorini, Greece

How to get around Europe

Although vast, Europe is an accessible continent and you can cover plenty of distance in 30 days. Depending on your budget and what you want to achieve, flying is usually the quickest way to hop between major cities; however, you do lose much of the charm you get from seeing Europe from ground level.

Traveling by train is one of the best ways to explore the continent. Europe has an extensive cross-border rail network which is reliable, efficient, and reasonably priced. Eurail offers interrailing passes that fit a 30-day budget and allow more freedom to explore on your own timetable.

A red train travelling along forest and mountain peaks in Switzerland

If keeping costs down is a major factor, low-cost coach and bus services such as FlixBus and Infobus can be good options, having routes to more than 1200 destinations in 24 countries.

Alternatively, booking an organized adventure will really make the most of your 30 days on the continent. There are dozens of brilliant itineraries covering all interests and budgets –almost always including travel, accommodation, and the services of a tour leader– it’s a great way to travel around Europe with like-minded people. 

See Also: The Seven Most Scenic Train Rides in Europe

30 days in Europe: Where to go and what to do

With 30 days to play with, Europe really can be your oyster. Amsterdam to Antwerp, London to Ljubljana, Zurich to Zagreb, you can easily check out 10 countries or more on a 30-day budget. Classic Europe itineraries include Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona, while the more unique itineraries include destinations like Pamplona, Liechtenstein, and the Rhineland. Focus on one or two regions and get stuck into seeing the best of it on a 30-day European holiday. 

trip ideas to europe

See Also: 50 Fabulous and Free Things to Do in Europe

Western Europe

From Anne Frank Huis in Amsterdam to the Zurich opera, most classic pan-European tours focus on the big hitters – Paris, Berlin, Rome, Venice, Barcelona – where there’s enough culture and history to fill 300 days, let alone 30. 

trip ideas to europe

Some organized adventures will take a deeper dive into western Europe, starting in London and winding through 18 or 19 destinations, including Biarritz and Madrid, the French Riviera and Monaco, Florence, Venice, and Rome, while others will include a river cruise through the Rhineland, a tour of Cologne and the last few days enjoying Amsterdam.

Southern Europe

Sweeping across from Spain to Serbia, the southern Europe region incorporates Portugal, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Albania, Slovenia and more. From the temples of ancient Greece, the ruins of Rome to the beaches of Spain, Cyprus, and Albania, southern Europe is great for combining culture and kick-back time. 

Gondolas gliding down a canal in Venice, Italy

For something a little different from the classic European Grand Tour, book an organized adventure that takes in the most fascinating destinations along the Mediterranean and Dardania route. Several 30-day itineraries have options that start in Tirana, Albania, and wind across the length of southern Europe, including overnights in Naples and Pompeii, Durmitor National Park in Montenegro, Sarajevo, Belgrade and Budapest.

Central and Eastern Europe

From the emerald-hued Plitviče Lakes in Croatia and the bohemian nightlife of Sofia, to the Gothic architecture and beer taverns of Prague, there are a million and one reasons to include central and eastern regions on your 30-day European trip, not least because these affordable cities will make a tight budget stretch even further.

A monument at Fisherman's Bastion, Budapest, Hungary

Whether you start in Vienna or Vilnius, there are a number of organized adventures that explore central and Eastern Europe’s most captivating cities, including Bucharest, Sofia, and Plovdiv. Alternatively, choose an itinerary that ventures into the rugged landscape of the High Tatra Mountains between Poland and Slovakia.

Northern Europe

With its design-centric cities, glacial fjords and stark arctic wilderness, Northern Europe can feel like an entirely different planet, compared to the rest of the continent. From the geothermal waters of Iceland’s Blue Lagoon, and the pop culture museums of Stockholm to the fjords of Norway, there are plenty of reasons to head north on your adventure. 

A fishing village and rocky shoreline in Norway

From Copenhagen and Oslo to Stockholm, you can have some incredible Nordic adventures on these 30-day itineraries across northern Europe. Several include overnight cruises from Stockholm to Helsinki or crossing over the Arctic Circle to Rovaniemi in Finnish Lapland. 

For more inspiration — or to book a hassle-free holiday and travel with a group of like-minded people — check out our full range of 30-day Europe tours.

See Also: The Best Places to Travel Alone in Europe

trip ideas to europe

Tracey Davies

Tracey Davies is a Brighton-based travel writer, journalist and editor of 101 Singles Holidays, as well as a former co-host of “The Carry On” travel podcast.

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Your Europe itinerary: 10 routes to explore the continent

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written by Rough Guides Editors

updated 11.10.2023

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You can’t expect to fit everything Europe has to offer into one trip and we don’t suggest you try. For those taking a big, extended trip around the continent you could join a few countries together. Each of these itineraries could be done in two or three weeks if followed to the letter but don’t push it too hard – with so much to see and do you’re bound to get waylaid somewhere you love or stray off the suggested route.

1. Britain and Ireland

2. france and switzerland, 3. benelux, germany and austria, 4. spain, portugal and morocco, 6. central and eastern europe, 7. scandinavia, 8. mallorca, menorca, ibiza and formentera (balearic islands island hopping), 9. the balkans, 10. greece and turkey.

This article is inspired by our Rough Guides guidebooks — your essential guides for travelling the world.

Travel ideas for Spain, created by local experts

Andalucía Explored

9 days  / from 2491 USD

Andalucía Explored

Discover the best of Andalucía's breathtaking palaces, churches, museums, vineyards, and more, as you travel through spectacular scenery dotted with pueblos blancos and bordered by rugged mountains and coast en route to Granada, Seville, Ronda and Jerez de la Frontera.

A culinary experience in Seville

4 days  / from 649 USD

A culinary experience in Seville

Explore the cuisine and surroundings of Seville in Andalucia. From Iberian ham over sherry wines to the production and secrets of olive oil, this tour is an ideal weekend getaway. Decide yourself if you prefer a rental car or a chauffeur-driven car to explore the beauty of Andalucia.

Spanish Honeymoon

10 days  / from 3826 USD

Spanish Honeymoon

Discover Andalusia, starting with the cultural city of Seville, then on to Córdoba and Granada, home of the stunning Alhambra Palace. Next you'll visit Granada and the Albayzin Arab quarter, then enjoy a stunning hot-air balloon ride, before ending your trip with a luxury boat trip from Marbella!

Where else to begin but London (1) – one of the world’s greatest but most expensive cities. While your wallet is still intact move on to the storied grounds of Oxford (2) before heading to Snowdonia (3), where the Welsh mountains provide excellent hiking.

Soak up some history in the medieval streets of York (4), then make the trip north to stunning Edinburgh (5). Find your inner Braveheart in the Scottish Highlands (6) and fit in an unforgettable hike, climb, or ski while you’re at it.

Pop across the North Channel to Belfast (7), but be sure not to miss the nearby Giant’s Causeway – one of Europe’s great natural wonders. Grab a perfect pint of Guinness in Dublin (8), then wind down on the windswept beaches of Ireland ’s West Coast (9).

Rough Guides tip: For more practical guidance that will help you make the most of your Britain and Ireland trip, have a chat with our local experts , who can help you plan your dream trip.

Start in Paris (1), Europe ’s most elegant capital, then venture off to the châteaux and prime vineyards of the Loire Valley (2). Move south to beautiful Bordeaux (3), which boasts bustling city life and some of Europe’s finest surfing beaches to boot.

Head south of the peaks of the Pyrenees (4) before taking a trip through Southern France to the Côte d’Azur (5). Don’t miss the magic of Corsica (6), a true adventure playground, or traditional cooking in Lyon (7), the country’s gastronomic capital.

Try your luck skiing and climbing in the Alps (8), and end by relaxing riverside in laid-back Zürich (9).

Rough Guides tip: If you're planning a trip to France, our fully customisable French itineraries can help you get the most out of your trip.

Kick-off in Amsterdam (1) before enjoying more atmospheric canals and beautiful buildings in Bruges (2). Cologne ’s (3) spectacular old town is a perfect first stop in Germany , but be sure to head north soon after for the vast port and riotous bars of Hamburg (4).

Few cities can compete with the style and youthful energy of Berlin (5), while Dresden (6) has also become a favourite backpacker hangout. Then head south to Munich (7), where Bavaria ’s capital boasts everything from snowy scenery to beer-fuelled Oktoberfest.

Cross over the border to Austria (8), and conclude this itinerary among the palaces, museums, cafés and boulevards of Vienna (9).

While travelling in Benelux, read our guide to the best things to do in Belgium and you may want to stay in the country longer.

Rough Guides tip: Don't know where to start planning your trip to Germany and Austria? Start planning with our local experts who will help you customise our German itineraries according to your preferences.

Begin in the Basque capital of Bilbao (1), Spain’s friendliest city and home of the Guggenheim . Then it’s on to the city beaches, late-night bars and enchanting old town of Barcelona (2). Ibiza 's (3) nightclubs are famous the world over, but its pockets of peace are worth the trip alone.

Gobble tapas and dance the night away in Madrid (4) before heading west for the countless port lodges of Porto (5). Cruise down the Atlantic coast to the historic Portuguese capital of Lisbon (6), then make for the region of Andalucía (7), stopping in the cities of Seville and Granada as you venture further south.

If you catch a ferry across the Straits of Gibraltar to Morocco and set course for Fez (8), explore the medieval Moroccan city of labyrinth alleys, souks and mosques. Finish up in Marrakesh (9), a colourful city with a stunning backdrop of the Atlas Mountains .

Rough Guide tip: This route may seem a bit intricate. That's why our Spanish , Portuguese and Moroccan itineraries will come in handy, fully customisable they leave room for imagination.

Related articles from the blog

Elafonissi beach in Crete © Shutterstock

Start in Milan (1) for a little Prada, Gucci, and Leonardo da Vinci. Veer east to visit the world’s most beautiful city, Venice (2), then south to the foodie nirvana of Bologna (3). Glide onwards to Tuscany (4) where Florence and Siena make excellent bases to explore the region’s hill towns.

You can hardly “do” Europe and not see Rome (5), and there is truly no better place to eat pizza than in the crumbling yet attractive city of Naples (6). Experience a Roman town frozen in time at Pompeii (7), before sleeping in one of Matera ’s (8) hand-carved caves.

Kick back in Sicily (9) on idyllic beaches beneath smouldering volcanoes, or enjoy the hectic pace of Palermo , one of Italy ’s most in-your-face cities.

Rough Guide tip: Planning a trip to a popular tourist destination like Italy can be difficult, as there are so many tempting places to visit. To make it easier, contact our local experts who can help customise our Italy itineraries to suit your preferences and help you have an unforgettable experience.

Get going in Prague (1), a pan-European city with beer that never disappoints. Move east to Warsaw ’s (2) vodka-soaked bar scenes, Old Town, palaces and parks.

Arty and atmospheric Kraków (3) shouldn’t be missed, and neither should a trip to the charming cafés of L'viv (4). Leave cities behind for the majestic wilderness of Slovakia 's Tatra Mountains (4), then head back to civilisation and immerse yourself in Budapest (6) where you'll find two great cities in one.

Finish this itinerary up in Ljubljana (7); Slovenia ’s capital is a perfectly formed pit stop between central Europe and the Adriatic if you’re eager to push on to the Balkans.

Rough Guides tip: Central and Eastern Europe can safely compete with their Western neighbours. Until recently, these regions were off the tourist radar, but that has changed. Contact our local experts and create an itinerary covering the places you want to visit.

Start in the lively lanes of beautiful Copenhagen (1), and head north to Gothenburg ’s (2) elegant architecture, fantastic nightlife and fully-functioning rainforest. A visit to Oslo (3) is worth the expense, but after a while, you'll feel the pull of the Norwegian fjords (4).

The mild climate and wild scenery of the Lofoten Islands (5) should not be skipped, but neither should the reindeer, huskies and elusive Northern Lights of Lapland (6). Of course, no trip to Scandinavia would be complete without a stop in Stockholm (7).

If you’re travelling in summer, get to Gotland (8) – Sweden ’s party island, buzzing with DJs and bronzed bodies on the beach.

Rough Guides tip: In our opinion, each of the Scandinavian countries is worthy of a separate visit. Start with our Norwegian or Swedish itineraries and see how both countries will keep you occupied for a long time. And if you want to cover the whole Scandinavian destination, get in touch with our local guides who will help you create a convenient and complete itinerary.

Start your island hopping trip with Mallorca (1), a Mediterranean gem boasting stunning beaches and vibrant culture. Move east to Menorca (2) with its tranquil coves and untouched beauty. Discover the island's natural wonders, including the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and the ancient megalithic sites that dot the landscape.

In Ibiza (3), embrace the vibrant nightlife and dance your nights away at world-famous clubs. During the day, unwind at the beautiful beaches, explore the picturesque old town of Ibiza Town, and revel in the bohemian vibes that permeate the island.

Formentera (4) beckons with its idyllic beaches and laid-back vibes. Immerse yourself in this island paradise, then head back to (5) Mallorca for the perfect finale - a journey that combines the best of the Balearics!

Rough Guides tip: To make sure you don't miss out on the gems of any of the Balearic Islands - contact our local experts who will create the most comprehensive itinerary for you.

Start with a slew of cheap but delicious wine, watersports, and vitamin D on the Dalmatian coast (1), then move on to Europe’s war-scarred but most welcoming capital, Sarajevo (2).

History-steeped Dubrovnik (3) rivalled Venice in its day and is an easy stop on the way to Budva (4), Montenegro’s star resort with unspoilt beaches and throbbing open-air bars. Head further south to Tirana (5) for charming architecture and urban exploration, before visiting the shimming shores of Ohrid’s (6) mountain-backed lake.

Be sure to check out the chilled vibe of Sofia (7), and the more upbeat buzz of Serbia ’s hip capital: Belgrade (8). End this itinerary by discovering Transylvania (9) – you probably won’t find any vampires, but you will find fairytale villages, colourful festivals, and wolf tracking in the Carpathians.

Rough Guide tip: Discover the riches of Croatia and Romania: each country is a treasure trove of fascinating experiences. Start with our carefully designed Croatia or Romania itineraries and you will be immersed in a world of coastal wonders, ancient legends and delicious cuisine. To fully experience the magic of both destinations, our local guides are ready to create an unforgettable journey through these enchanting countries.

Begin by finding the perfect beach in Kefaloniá (1), and continue to Athens (2) for a sunset over the Parthenon. Sail first to the island of Íos (3) for partying backpackers and hippie-era charm, then on to Crete ’s (4) Samarian Gorge.

Get to the Turkish mainland for a visit to the remarkably preserved temples, mosaics, and baths in Ephesus (5) before mountain biking, paragliding, or diving in Ka ş (6).

Then venture east to Cappadocia ’s (7) volcanic landscape and subterranean city, and wrap up among the bazaars, hammams, and surprisingly hectic nightlife in Istanbul (8).

Rough Guides tip: Choose our Greek or Turkish itineraries for a fascinating journey into ancient history, breathtaking coastlines and tantalising cuisine. For a complete Mediterranean adventure, our local guides will create a seamless and unforgettable journey through both countries.

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Soller Mallorca from above, with sailboats parked in the brightly covered bay. Mallorca is one of the best road trips in Europe!

55 Epic Road Trips in Europe (Itinerary Ideas + Tips!)

Whether you’re looking for coastal views, mountain villages, castles, wine country, or all of the above, one thing is for sure: there is absolutely no shortage of epic road trips in Europe.

Over the past several years, we have absolutely fallen in love with sampling the best road trips in Europe, and have explored parts of more than a dozen European countries by car, including driving from Portugal to Italy and back a few times!

Driving in Europe provides the freedom to find uncrowded corners and offbeat delights, while also ensuring you have a chance to hit up some of the biggest bucket list destinations on the continent.

In the beginning stages of planning a European road trip and not sure where you want to go?

With the help of many other travel bloggers, we have you covered–more than 50 times over!–in this giant guide to the best road trips in Europe.

Table of Contents

Once You Pick Your Perfect European Road Trip…

Tips for for planning to take a road trip in europe, best northern europe road trips, best southern europe road trips, best road trips in the balkans, best western european road trips, best central and eastern european road trips.

kate storm and jeremy storm posing in front of a rental car iceland ring road trip

Some links in this post may be affiliate links. If you make a purchase through one of these links, we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Please see our disclosure policy for more detail.

… We’d love to help you plan your trip in more detail!

Here on Our Escape Clause, we’ve written detailed, step-by-step road trip guides for many of the destinations covered in this giant bucket list, based on our personal travels around the continent.

We’ll link them where relevant below, but to see them in one place, you can scroll through all of our road trip guides here .

We also have hundreds of travel guides on specific European destinations on our website.

To peruse by country, you can use our  destinations page  or the search bar on the top right of the page (on desktop) or at the top of the pop-out menu (on mobile) to find what we’ve written about the places you’re most interested in!

kate storm jeremy storm and ranger storm on a balcony overlooking matera on a southern italy itinerary

This travel guide to the best European road trips is already giant, so I’ll keep these brief, but here are a few essential tips for planning a European road trip!

Shop around for your rental car.

The best company to rent a car for your road trip in Europe from will likely vary dramatically depending on where and when you’re traveling.

Sometimes large international carriers offer the best prices, sometimes local outfits. Sometimes one company has an excellent base price, but terrible rental requirements.

The best way to find your rental car is to search through Discover Cars , which will sift through dozens of companies to find the best combination of low prices and reasonable rental terms for your European road trip.

Browse rental cars for your European road trip today!

Jeremy standing to the right of a country road during our road trip in France. He's standing in front of a black rental car with the rear hatch open, and he's wearing a black jacket.

Read the rental requirements carefully.

Especially make sure you know how many kilometers you’ve been allotted (or ideally, if they’re unlimited)!

You’ll also want to note whether you need to return the car empty or full of fuel, what to do if the car breaks down, and what damages you’re liable for in the event of an accident.

ranger storm sitting on a ledge overlooking the puglia countryside in locorotondo

Manuals are cheaper and easier to rent than automatics.

Ideally, you’ll want to know how to drive a manual before taking any road trips in Europe.

While most companies carry a few automatic cars for non-European visitors, manuals are standard on the continent and are both far cheaper and much less likely to sell out.

Don’t focus on big cities.

Generally speaking, Europe’s legendary trains , plus plentiful bus and flight routes, can get you between major cities easier than a rental car.

Plan your European road trips around small towns, natural highlights, and countryside beauty instead.

Kate Storm and Jeremy Storm standing in front of a waterfall when visiting Plitvice Lakes National Park Croatia

Plan ahead if you want to rent a car in a competitive area.

Want to road trip Iceland in the height of summer?

If so, be sure to plan ahead: rental cars have been known to sell out!

Booking your rental car in advance is most important in places at a crossroads of extreme popularity and limited availability–like islands, for example.

kate storm at jokusarlon lagoon iceland in a yellow jacket

Lofoten Islands, Norway

From Michele of The Intrepid Guide

Located in Northern Northern, the Lofoten Islands are a quiet and almost untouched corner of Norway.

Connected to mainland Norway in the north by road, this beautiful archipelago extends out into the Norwegian Sea.

The long highway connects most of the islands by bridges or ferries, making it super easy to get around.

There are countless things to do in Lofoten which range from easy roadside stops to hiking the mountain tops for stunning panoramic views.

Lofoten highlights include seeing the brave arctic surfers ride the waves at Unstad Beach, seeing the bright yellow Fisherman cabins at Nusfjord, watching the Northern Lights reflect in the wet sand at Skagsanden Beach, and seeing the iconic red cabins and cod drying racks on Hamnøy Island. 

If you only do one hike, make the Reinebringen Trail.

view of Reinebringen trail in lofoten islands norway, one of the best places to plan a road trip europe

This popular hike leads you to some of the best views you’ll ever see and the elevation will make you feel like you’re on top of the world.

Start your trip in Svolvær, the region’s capital, and work your way down to Å – the most southerly town connected by road.

For the ultimate Lofoten experience, be sure to stay in a traditional fishermen’s cabin ( rorbuer ) and get hygge (Norwegian for ‘cozy’).

Recommended Road Trip Length

Allow at least 5 days to gently explore Lofoten and take it all in. This is not a place you want to rush!

From Svolvær to Å, it’s just 80 miles (129km), so you’ll be able to cover a lot of ground during your road trip.

Snowy beach in Lofoten Norway as seen during a northern Europe road trip, with a small red building in the center of the photo

Westfjords, Iceland

From James of Where You’re Between

Home to some of the world’s most breathtaking landscapes, Iceland, in general, is one of the best countries for road trips in Europe.

Iceland’s second city of Akureyri is a fairly easy drive from Reykjavik, though one way to stretch out the journey is to take a multi-day detour through the Westfjords . 

Being one of the most remote areas in Iceland means that the Westfjords is also one of the least visited.

Despite this, the Westfjords is one of the most dramatic and spectacular corners of Iceland.

As an added bonus, a detour via the Westfjords also passes through the equally beautiful regions of Western Iceland and Northern Iceland.  

Before reaching the Westfjords take a further detour to Snæfellsjökull National Park, wherein true Icelandic style a glacier sits on top of a volcano.

There are countless waterfalls all along the route, including Kirkjufellsfoss, underneath the jagged shard of Kirkjufell Mountain.

Sunset over waterfalls in Iceland, one of the best places to visit in Europe in summer

Just inside the Westfjords region is Dynjandi, the largest in the whole region at over 100 meters tall. 

Much of the Westfjords is made up of mile after mile of sensational landscapes.

The roads often cling to the craggy mountainsides as they peak and trough around the jutting fjords.

Dotted throughout the Westfjord’s dramatic landscape are a number of beautiful idyllic towns, such as Flateyri and Ísafjörður.

Sat beneath the sloping mountains and facing the fjords these picturesque towns feel as though they’re a million miles away from anywhere.

Iceland’s second city of Akureyri also sits on the rim of a huge fjord in the far north of the country.

The nearby town of Husavik is one of the best places in Iceland to go whale-watching, and don’t miss the other-worldly landscapes of Dimmuborgir lava fields before you make your way back to Reykjavik.

3-5 days will give you a great introduction to the Westfjords.

From there, you can either explore the region more deeply or combine it with time in the rest of Iceland!

Dynjandi waterfall in the westfjords of Iceland, one of the best offbeat road trips in Europe

Algarve, Portugal

From Nina of Where in the World is Nina

We’re not sure what the best part of road-tripping Portugal’s Algarve is… the beauty, the cheap car rentals, or the ease of getting everywhere.

Perhaps it’s all three that make it one of the best European road trips!

If you fly into Lisbon or Faro, get your rental car booked ahead of time.

If you visit in the off-season, you can get a steal of a price for your car rental and lodging.

On your Algarve road trip, you can work from east to west or vice versa.

An ideal route would start in Lisbon, drive south, and then end in Faro.

You may pay just a bit more to drop the car off in another city but it’s well worth not having to backtrack.

The Algarve is known for its incredible beaches, cliffs, coves, and surf.

View of small beach on Algarve Coast in Portugal with a sailboat in the distance and rocky cliffs jutting out to sea

Some highlights you must check out include the sleepy surf town of Sagres featuring three nearby beaches (Amado is the furthest but best for beginner surfers).

Just thirty minutes east is Lagos , known for its headland views, watchtowers, and perhaps the prettiest view you’ll lay your eyes on at Ponta da Piedade.

Take a boat tour to Benagil Cave, or anywhere along the coast, exploring its sandy rock towers that sprinkle the shores.

There are also numerous coastal hikes that are really easy and provide great views. A favorite coastal hike is the Seven Hanging Valleys Trail.

One of the best parts of this Europe road trip is that you don’t have to pack up every day!

There’s no reason why you can’t choose where to stay in the Algarve once, and then not worry about it again since everything is pretty close and you’ll have a car.

Suggested Road Trip Length

Your trip should be nothing under three days, otherwise, it would be too rushed!

Five days is a good number and a week would be extremely ideal and you’d probably get to see everything you want and more without being too busy.

praia da marinha from above, one of the most beautiful beaches algarve portugal

Andalucia, Spain

From Tom of The Travelling Tom

A road trip around Andalucia is the best way to see this beautiful part of Spain.

There is no shortage of beautiful places to stop, such as popular Seville , Granada, and Malaga, and lesser-known spots such as Cadiz and Ronda .

Andalucia is full of history and interesting sights. From the towering Puente Nuevo in Ronda to the Moorish palace La Alhambra, the region is arguably the most interesting part of Spain to visit.

History is everywhere you look. Buildings from the Moorish rule of Spain, to Roman baths and amphitheaters. Andalucia is the place to visit if you’re a culture vulture!

You will also find loads of activities along the way. One of these is the Caminito del Rey outside of Malaga. It once had the reputation of being the world’s most dangerous hike.

court of the lions in nasrid palaces alhambra spain

However, the hike on boardwalks overlooking a gorge is a lot safer than it used to be.

Now, you can admire the views instead of worrying whether you’ll fall off or not!

Starting from Malaga and passing through Seville, Granada, Cordoba , and Huelva is one of the best routes to take. A detour to Gibraltar is possible as well.

This road trip in Spain can be done in 7 to 10 days depending on how fast you want to go.

whitewashed town of tarifa spain with africa visible beyond the water

Amalfi Coast, Italy

From Chrysoula of Travel Passionate

Italy’s stunning Amalfi Coast is a memorable destination for a road trip as the colorful coastal towns are linked together with wonderful winding roads that meander along the hillside with spectacular sea views along the way.

Not only this, but the beaches, restaurants, markets, and museums en route make the Amalfi Coast ideal for travelers of any age.

Keep in mind, though, that driving on the Amalfi Coast in summer is not for the faint of heart: only undertake this road trip if you’re a confident driver!

The whole of the Amalfi Coast has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site which just goes to show what an incredible destination it is.

Start your  Amalfi Coast road trip from Sorrento or Salerno, and work your way down the coast to towns like Ravello, Positano, and Praiano.

The panoramic views you witness as you drive along these coastal roads are absolutely breathtaking so make sure you pull over to take in the views on regular occasions throughout the drive!

While the joy of taking a road trip along the Amalfi Coast is that each journey can be totally unique as you have complete flexibility, there are certain stops that you’ll probably want to add to the list to ensure you see some of the highlights.

View of the Amalfi Coast with the sea to the right and a village on the left. The beautiful Amalfi Coast is one of the best places to visit in Italy.

These include Positano (the official starting point of the Amalfi Coast), Furore (the only fjord in Italy), the quaint village of Atrani, and, of course, the port of Amalfi itself.

The Amalfi Coast runs as far as Vietri sul Mare and you can take in as many or as few towns and villages as you wish.

The larger, more northern towns are the busiest and therefore most expensive, so if you’d prefer something a little more relaxing head to one of the smaller villages further down the coast.

You could spend absolutely anywhere from a few days to a few months exploring the Amalfi Coast, but the sweet spot is probably somewhere between one and two weeks.

If you have longer to spend in southern Italy, consider visiting Sorrento, Pompeii , and Capri too as these all have tons of character, culture, and history to explore.

Positano and Positano Beach from above along the Amalfi Coast, one of the best road trips in Europe

From Rai of A Rai of Light

There are plenty of places to visit in Malta and a road trip sure is one of the best ways of doing so.

The island is perfectly made to get into your car and head for the open roads (as long as you’re confident–the driving on Malta is intense).

However, Malta is small enough to ensure getting lost is not a regular occurrence, while large enough to hold many distinguished features and scenic routes.

From the start point in Sliema don’t miss a stop at the Birgu Waterfront for great views of Valletta, before moving on to the picturesque fishing village of Marsaxlokk.

This laid-back village will make you feel as if you’ve stepped back in time.

kate storm wearing a pink dress on a side street in valletta malta

Most of the scenic drives in Malta will have the sea featuring in one way or another.

After a stop in Golden Bay, the drive down from Mellieħa to Għadira comes with many good stops along the way, including Għadira Bay and The Red Tower.

On the way back to Valetta, a stop in St. Julian’s is recommended.

Malta is just so compact that you really can fit in most of the island on a day-long road trip.

However, it is recommended to increase this to two to four days if you’re really keen to take your time and see all that this island has got to offer.

Things to Do in Malta: Marsaxlokk

Costa Brava, Spain

From Justine Ancheta of Latitude 41

Translated as “the rugged coast”, the Costa Brava blesses northeastern Spain with sandy beaches, medieval villages, and the eccentricities of artist Salvador Dalí.

From Barcelona , head north to Tossa de Mar, a small town where you can get a view of towering medieval walls while basking on Platja Gran, the main beach.

Then spend a day or two exploring the best thin gs to do in Girona, including the 12th-century Arab baths, the well-preserved Jewish Quarter, and the imposing Girona Cathedral.

From there, visit the charming former fishing village of Cadaqués.

tossa de mar, costa brava, from above, with castle in the foreground and water in the background, one of the best beach towns in spain

A warning to the driver: the last few kilometers of the road leading up there are narrow and winding, but not dangerous.

However, the journey is worth the scenic beach coves, whitewashed residences, and cobbled streets wrapped up in a sophisticated ambiance.

It’s also where artist Salvador Dalí spent his summers and home to the famous Casa-Museo de Salvador Dali.

Next up is Figueres, the birth town of Dalí and home to the quirky Dali Theatre-Museum.

Some of his avant-garde works lie here like his holographic art, stereographs, and the Mae West installation. Also, the artist himself is buried in the crypt.

This European road trip is ideal if you’re seeking the warm Mediterranean sun while discovering local Catalan and Spanish art and culture.

Carve in at least seven days to see the magnificent Costa Brava!

coastline of Costa Brava Spain as seen from across with water, with a village visible in the distance. Spain's Costa Brava is one of the best European road trip routes!

Sardinia, Italy

From Hayley Lewis of A Lovely Planet

The stunning Italian island of Sardinia is a fantastic road trip destination, with stunning beaches, incredible scenery, and delicious Italian food.

Start your Sardinia road trip in Cagliari, the island’s largest city, and head southwest to Isola di Sant’Antioco, accessed by a mile-long causeway.

This is one of the oldest parts of Sardinia, and is not as frequented by tourists.

Next, drive to Bosa on the east coast. The coastline is incredibly scenic along the way, with rugged hills and sandy beaches.

Bosa is a hillside town filled with quaint colorful houses, and a castle at the center – a must-visit – especially for great views of the town.

aerial view of the colorful buildings of bosa sardinia surrounded by mountains, one of the best seaside towns in italy

Continue north to Alghero, a town with a strong Spanish influence and striking coastal walls.

North of the town you’ll find some of Sardinia’s most beautiful beaches – perfect for a few days of relaxing.

Make your way across the island to the west coast, and the town of Cala Gonone, the gateway to Golfo di Orosei – a stretch of incredible coastline accessed by boat or by hiking.

The water here is clear and a striking aquamarine color and the coast is dotted with great little beaches including the famed Cala Goloritze – one of Sardinia’s most prized beaches.

There is also an extensive cave network, which you can visit part of, via boat at Bue Marino Grotto, which is filled with striking stalactites and stalagmites.

Before you make your way back to Cagliari for your flight home, be sure to stop at Cala Sinzias, a white sand beach reminiscent of the Caribbean or French Polynesia.

Ideally, it’s best to have at least a week to explore all that a Sardinia road trip has to offer.

overview of a beach near cagliari sardinia

Sao Miguel, Azores, Portugal

From Megan of MeganStarr.com

In the middle of the Atlantic Ocean where the European plates meet the American ones sits the Azorean Archipelago, a group of volcanic islands that are an autonomous region of Portugal. 

The largest of the islands is Sao Miguel and you’ll find the main airport there, as well as a copious number of things to do.

Sao Miguel is the perfect place to start your Azores itinerary as there is a network of well-taken care of roads that wind around the island allowing visitors to see all of the viewpoints.

This Azorean island is the perfect place for a road trip, and exploring Sao Miguel in-depth by car should take around 3-4 days.

The best place to embark on this road trip is in the capital city of Ponta Delgada.

After visiting the colonial city brimming with architecture constructed with a touch of black, volcanic stones, you should head west where you will have the opportunity to look down into craters of old volcanoes and lakes that now fill them.

Sete Cidades is the most famous and the landscape will blow one’s mind.

As you cruise around Sao Miguel by car, you’ll have the chance to drive by some attractive black sand beaches and small villages, such as Capelas along the north coast.

view of cliffside hiking trail in azores lined with hydrangeas. the azores are a europe bucket list destination

There are several natural pools along this route that you’ll want to be sure to tote along a bathing suit and beach towel.

The next place worth tackling on Sao Miguel is the eastern part of the island, where you’ll find many hot springs, botanical gardens, and relaxing parks such as Terra Nostra where you can spend time rejuvenating yourself in natural pools heated by geothermal energy.

Another can’t-miss thing to do in Sao Miguel is to find a restaurant near Furnas that specializes in ‘Cozido das Furnas’, a famous Azorean dish that has been slowly stewed by the Earth’s underground heat.

There is plenty to do in the Azores and Sao Miguel is an ideal starting point. 

Whether you stay there for three or four days, which is the minimum number I recommend, or more, you will definitely be glad you got to experience one of the best road trips in Europe.

lake filling ancient volcano in azores portugal

Eastern Sicily, Italy

From Annabel of Smudged Postcard

Sicily is a big island so to do it justice it’s worth concentrating on just part of it. Eastern Sicily lends itself particularly well to a road trip.

Fly into Catania and start your Eastern Sicily road trip, starting with a few days spent exploring the beautiful coastal city of Syracuse with its stunning cathedral and fascinating ancient history.

Next up is the Val di Noto where a huge earthquake resulted in many of the cities being rebuilt in an elaborate Baroque style in the 17th century.

Noto and Ragusa are particularly impressive although fans of chocolate might prefer Modica and its interesting chocolate history.

Drive into Sicily’s interior for a morning exploring Caltagirone with its incredible ceramic staircase before heading on to Enna.

Kate Storm in a blue skirt overlooking Ragusa Ilba from Ragusa Superiore, one of the best views on this 10 days in Sicily itinerary

In the center of Sicily, Enna is a hilltop city like none other with awe-inspiring views across the wheat plains.

Also not to be missed near Enna are the Roman mosaics at Piazza Armerina, which are said to be some of the best-preserved in the world.

From Enna, you’ll pass smoldering Mt. Etna before ending the trip in pretty Taormina with its Greek amphitheater and the lovely beaches at Isola Bella below.

This trip will take around 10 to 14 days if you’d like to explore Sicily at a leisurely pace.

The road trip is best undertaken outside of the scorching summer months: the ancient sites are best visited during the milder weather of spring or autumn.

kate storm sitting on a garden wall in taormina sicily overlooking the ionian sea, one of the best places to visit in italy summer

Southern Italy From Puglia to Rome

From Marta Correale of Learning Escapes

The south of Italy is one of the most beautiful areas of the Italian peninsula and a wonderful destination for a European road trip.

Blessed with beautiful weather almost all year round, this is a land of many wonders and rewards the adventurous visitor with stunning coastlines, charming whitewashed villages, and important cultural sites.

This southern Italy itinerary travels from Puglia to Rome, via the little-known region of Basilicata.

Start your trip from the small city of Trani, marvel at its stunning waterside cathedral, and make your first overnight stop in Alberobello.

Famous for its hobbit-like dwellings of UNESCO fame, this is a pretty town with flower-filled alleys and fairy-tale architecture, perfect for slow travelers and photography lovers.

kate storm sitting on the edge of a balcony on matera in summer--visiting matera in july can be considered a bit of an italy travel mistake

Make unique Matera your second stop and spend a few days taking in the incredible sight that is this city, entirely carved out of rock ( sassi ).

Explore its rupestrian churches and get pleasantly lost among its labyrinthine city center, beautiful views, and restaurants!

If you book in advance, you may also be able to find accommodation in one of the  sassi : these have now been restored and are a unique and romantic place to call home for a few days!

From Matera, drive towards Rome but before diving into the dream that is the Eternal City, make sure you visit the archaeological site of Paestum along the way.

Famous for beautiful Greek temples abandoned among vast green fields, it is one of the most scenic Unesco sites in Italy and one not many visitors know about yet! 

This road trip is ideally spread over a week to 10 days and it is particularly suited to those travelers who enjoy cultural sites and getting off the beaten track.

Temple of Athena as seen in Paestum Italy shot dead-on, as seen during a fun Europe road trip itinerary

Tenerife, Spain

From Paulina of Paulina on the Road

Some may think of Tenerife as a plain beach and sun destination, but it’s much more than that.

There are plenty of things to see and do on this Spanish gem once you get away from the shore.

The best to explore Tenerife is by going on a road trip, which will help you understand how diverse this island is: rocky volcano mountains in the north and golden, sandy beaches in the south.

I recommend starting in Adeje, one of the best places to stay in Tenerife , from here you can make your way up north to Santa Cruz de Tenerife, famous for its Auditorium and carnival.

white village perched on a dramatic cliff in tenerife, one of the best winter sun destinations in europe

From here, continue to La Laguna, a gem of historic architecture.

This is already the highest point you can get in Tenerife.

From here, drive all the way southwards passing along La Orotava and Los Gigantes. 

The island may seem small in size, however, you should at least calculate 2-3 days if you want to explore all its attractions with a road trip.

Mountain view of the jagged peaks and dense forests of Tenerife, one of the best islands for a road trip in Europe

Terceira Island, Azores, Portugal

From Sylvia of Wapiti Travel

Terceira Island is probably the most spectacular island in the Azores archipelago. 

It can be visited as part of a broader Azores itinerary . This European road trip is a versatile vacation that is sure to please hikers and nature lovers.

Since none of the islands is really large, most tourists visit multiple islands in one trip. Island hopping, either by boat or by plane, is part of the charm of a trip to the Azores.

The island was the third to be discovered, hence its name, and it is also the third-largest island of the group. 

A few hours is all you need to drive the entire loop, but by just driving around the island you would miss the majority of the impressive sights that are located in the center of the island.

view of  from Alto da Memoria, Terceira from above in azores with ocean in the background

The island is home to two impressive caves. You can visit both in one afternoon leaving ample space to hike the Mistérios Negros trail that starts at the entrance of Gruto do Natal. 

The next day you can visit the Furnas do Enxofre, a fairytale-like landscape at the heart of the island.

The island has numerous impressive viewpoints and if you plan your visit in summer you can dive into the countless natural swimming pools to cool off.

Three days is all you need to see all of the highlights of Terceira, which will allow you time to leisurely road trip the island and enjoy all the beauty it has to offer.

Cave on Terceira Island in the Azores with light shnging in an opening at the top and a trail visible on the right.

From Linn of Brainy Backpackers

A  road trip across the Tramuntana mountain range in Mallorca is a must if you visit the small Spanish island.

Starting in Palma de Mallorca, drive straight to Cap de Formentor for breathtaking cliff views.

You should not miss Cap de Formentor’s viewpoint, but even more spectacular are the views from an old abandoned building and watchtower up the hill next to the viewpoint.

You can either walk for 30 minutes or you can drive up the narrow road.

The reward is the most mesmerizing view of the entirety of Cap Formentor and Menorca in the distance.

famous Cap de Formentor viewpoint on mallorca with road to the left and sea to the right

Continue through the picturesque villages of Pollensa, Fortnalutx, Soller, Deia, Valldemossa, and Port Valdemossa.

In Soller, you should leave the car and take the old-fashioned tram down to Port de Soller. This town is a great place to stay the night during your Mallorca road trip.

 Recommended Road Trip Route

The route can be done in a day, but it is recommended to spend at least 2-3 days to get the most out of it.

With more time, you can add additional island destinations to sightsee, enjoy the beaches, and go snorkeling in Mallorca !

electric tram running along the beach in mallorca spain

Lisbon to Porto, Portugal

From Or of My Path in the World

Full of incredible stops along the way,   a road trip from Lisbon to Porto   is a great and easy way to explore multiple regions in Portugal.

This wonderful route includes quite a few unique landmarks, so it should be on any Europe lover’s bucket list.

The first one that shouldn’t be missed is Cabo da Roca, Europe’s westernmost point.

It provides the most scenic views of the Atlantic coast, and it’s the starting point of several hikes alongside it.

There’s also a nice bonus of getting a personalized certificate confirming the visit to this unique place.

view of coast from cabo da roca, a fun stop during an itinerary for portugal in 10 days

Another must-see on this road trip is Sintra. It’s home to the iconic, colorful, and Insta-famous Pena Palace, but there’s a lot more to this town.

Other historical landmarks to visit here include the Castle of the Moors, the Palace of Sintra, and the palace of Quinta da Regaleira.

The fairytale town of Obidos is also worth a visit: be sure to walk the town walls!

And, Portugal’s incredible UNESCO-recognized monasteries of Alcobaça, Batalha, and Tomar lie between Lisbon and Porto.

Your road trip isn’t complete without a stop at at least one of them!

Not including a few days in Lisbon and Porto, this route can take about 3-4 days.

Pena Palace in Sintra, an excellent day trip from Lisbon Portugal

Northern Spain Road Trip (Bilboa to Santiago de Compostela)

From Jessica of My Feet Will Lead Me

One of the most underrated areas of Europe may just be Northern Spain.

The diverse landscape from San Sebastian to Santiago de Compostela makes for multiple mini destinations in one road trip.

From tiny surf towns to mountain villages, to medieval cities, this region of Spain is an absolute gem.

And because it typically gets overshadowed by Barcelona, Madrid , and Andalucia , there won’t be swarms of tourists and prices are very reasonable.

Starting with the autonomous community of Basque Country, this culturally distinct region of Spain is known for its amazing cuisine and especially seafood.

Here, you’ll want to get your fix of “pintxos” or bar finger food.

For a lesser-known but incredible sight, visit the little surf town of Bakio and see the Game of Thrones filming location for the Dragonstone castle, known as Gaztelugatxe.

Continuing west to the Principality of Asturias, the Picos de Europa National Park is a dramatic and stunning area of snowcapped peaks, turquoise rivers, tiny traditional villages, and cliffside roads with views that will make your jaw drop.

Spain Picos de Europa Puente la Jaya stone bridge over a bright blue river

Head back to the ocean in the Asturias region where seaside villages cling to the dramatic coastline.

There are sandy beaches, rocky and rugged beaches, and jade-colored water.

Visit the capital of Oviedo for architecture and history and if small seaside villages intrigue you more, wind your way down the coast stopping for tapas and drinks in towns like Ribadasella, Lastres, and Cudillero.

Finally come to Santiago de Compostela, the capital of Galicia.

It also is the culmination of the iconic Camino de Santiago pilgrimage, so you’ll see many backpackers with trekking gear.

This is a fairly small city with a stunning medieval old town and cathedral. It’s a perfect place to spend a couple of days sampling tapas and sightseeing.

Northern Spain is perfect for mountain and beach-loving adventurers alike.

You’ll need at least a week to adequately cover the small towns, and longer if you want to spend time in the cities of San Sebastian, Bilbao, Santander, Oviedo, or Santiago de Compostela.

panoramic view of san sebastian spain from above

Barcelona to Andorra

From Mar of Once in a Lifetime Journey

Most people drive from Barcelona to  Andorra  without any stops, arriving at Andorra la Vella in about 2.5 hours.

However, you can also make it a day trip and visit a few of the interesting villages along the way.

Start with a morning stop at Montserrat Mountain. This famous landmark outside of Barcelona is a holy mountain for Catalans and contains the black Virgin of Montserrat.

There is a museum that holds paintings from famous artists such as Caravaggio and Picasso as well as the church which can be visited. 

After Montserrat, the next stop should be Manresa. This modern city has a Medieval core that contains a beautiful church, bridges over the River Cardoner and other places worth a visit.

Visit La Seu, the 14th-century basilica that took almost two centuries to build and is a gem of the Catalan Gothic style. 

Have lunch in Manresa, the more local a place looks, the better. Most restaurants will have lunch menus for less than 15 Euro, including coffee and usually a glass of wine.

view of cathedral of manresa spain from above, a fun stop when planning a european road trip from spain to andorra

With a full stomach, continue towards Berga, famous for La Patum, a fire festival that takes place every year during mid-June and which sees an explosion of fire, dancing, and drums.

If La Patum is not on, you can learn more at its small museum, and explore this small Medieval village with its entry gate called Portal de la Magdalena. 

After Berga, continue to La Seu d’Urgell, the capital of the county of La Cerdanya and the last territory before reaching Andorra.

In la Seu, as the name indicates, you can see a fabulous Romanesque Catedral de Santa Maria, which is one of the most important in Catalonia and has been well preserved.

There is an adjacent museum with Romanesque art pieces and a cloister.

You can comfortably complete this short European road trip in a day.

stone village in the hills of andorra, visible on a france road trip itinerary from toulouse to andorra

From Stephanie of Sofia Adventures

Slovenia is a stunning country, and some of the   best places to visit in Slovenia  are best reached by car.

While many tourists know to see Ljubljana and Lake Bled, gems like the UNESCO World Heritage site of Idrija, Lake Jansa, and Triglav National Park are can’t-miss spots that are slightly more remote. 

Start with a day or two in Ljubljana before you pick up a rental since Ljubljana is famously walkable and compact. When you’re ready to hit the road, you truly can go in any direction!

Head southwest to Predjama Castle, Skogjan Caves, and the seaside town of Piran , or you can head west to Idrija and the Julian Alps. 

Or go northwest to the waterfall-laden paradise of Triglav National Park.

Soca River in Slovenia with trees on either side and a mountain visible in the background, as seen during a Slovenia road trip

If you’re itching to go east, set your GPS to Maribor and enjoy this gorgeous and quiet Slovenian city that too many tourists skip over. 

If you’re going to be in the country in the wintertime and intend to drive through the mountains or do any skiing, make sure you pick a rental car that can handle the driving terrain!

The mountain roads in the west can be a bit tricky.

You can cover a lot of the country in one week, but give yourself two weeks to enjoy a lazy circuit around this tiny but packed country. 

Slovenia Travel Budget: Vintgar Gorge

Bay of Kotor

From Emily of Wander-Lush

Petite, affordable, and with only one toll road to its name, Montenegro is a terrific place for a European road trip.

While you can reasonably cover the entire country from mountains to sea in 7 to 10 days, for a slower-paced  road trip around Montenegro , I highly recommend honing in on the Bay of Kotor.

Montenegro’s crowning jewel, the Boka winds its way along the northern part of the country’s Adriatic coast, carving deep coves into its stony mountains.

Eighty kilometers of well-maintained highway hug the shoreline, meaning it takes just over 2 hours to drive around the entire bay.

Along the way, there are plenty of small towns and national parks to stop off at.

Highlights include the town of Kotor , with its UNESCO-listed Old Town, Budva, Sveti Stefan, and Herceg Novi, and Perast, a tiny Venetian town sandwiched between a pretty blue-water bay and towering hills. 

One of the best things about this road trip is that because of the short distance, you’ll never have to do more than an hour or so worth of driving in a single day.

view of our lady of the rocks from across the bay in montenegro

You can easily break up the journey with longer stays in the more laid-back towns (Perast is perfect for this – mainly because it’s free from cruise ships).

If you want a change of scenery, it’s only a quick detour up the steep hills above the bay to reach Lovcen National Park.

If you’re feeling brave, take the Kotor Serpentine, a notorious road that involves 16 hairpin bends.

The views get more and more spectacular with every turn, and there are plenty of places to pull over for a photo once you reach the top.

I recommend setting aside at least 5 full days to do this route, and the towns along the way, justice.

Girl in pink shirt climbing San Giovanni Fortress: Best Things to Do in Kotor Montenegro

Hvar, Croatia

From Martina of The Global Curious

The island of Hvar, in Croatia, is known for being a stunning, party island lying on the crystal clear depths of the Adriatic Sea.

Some head there to spend a few wild days, and others would visit for a couple of hours as a day trip from Split .

But travelers keen to unwind and truly enjoy Hvar could easily spend from 4 to 7 days road-tripping and discovering some of the island’s gems. 

Hvar’s most famous spots can be found in the Old Town and its surroundings, from the cathedral to the Spanish Fortress and a Franciscan Monastery.

If visiting over the summer, the lavender fields up on the hills around Velo Grablje and Brusje are a must, even if you are just passing by!

Camping and off-the-beaten-path enthusiasts can stay in Milna, a tiny villa by the sea with beautiful sunsets and great seafood.

If planning a visit to Croatia’s most famous beach, Zlatni Rat on the island of Brac, Jelsa is also a cute little town with a campsite where you can park and set camp. 

famous Zlatni Rat beach in brac croatia as seen from above via a drone

The best of road-tripping is the chance to get to more ‘secret’ places.

Pitve is definitely one of those! It’s a tiny ghost town up in the hills with a population of 69 people.

Getting there is quite fun as you must cross an old narrow tunnel before reaching a settlement full of abandoned stone houses left to nature’s will.

Dubovica is also another very scenic beach in Hvar. 

Another great idea is not just touring the island but visiting the Paklinski Islands, especially Marinkovac and Jerolim. 

Small boats parked near a rocky shore on the Pakleni Islands, one of the best things to do in Hvar

To kick start your road trip, catch the ferry in Split, arrive in Stari Grad, and tour the western half of the island. It’s also possible to rent a car once you arrive there! 

To complete the experience, drive across the island to the East and catch the ferry from Sucuraj to Drvenik.

Once in Croatia’s mainland, if you still have time on your hands, drive south for 2 hours and reach Dubrovnik !

Ideally, travelers would spend 5 or 6 nights in Hvar to really explore the island and its surroundings.

The roads are well maintained and although it can get crowded, as soon as you leave the main town, you’ll find peace and quiet.

View of Hvar Town from Spanish Fort with Pakleni Islands in the distance, one of the best things to do in Hvar Croatia

Southern Albania

From Rick of The Road is Life

Albania isn’t the first country that comes to mind when planning a European road trip, but if you give it a chance it will prove to be an amazing adventure.

This is a country with both great natural beauty and interesting history.

Towering mountains plummet precipitously into the crystal clear and stunning Mediterranean waters that span the entire west coast and further inland there is no shortage of beautiful UNESCO-listed sites and old towns to explore.

This southern Albania road trip will start you off in the port city of Saranda before visiting the stunning coastal town of Ksamil, with striking azure waters and nearby UNESCO-listed Roman ruins.

Then, head inland, passing by the beautiful “blue eye” lake before heading to the ancient town of Gjirokaster, with its traditional stone-roofed buildings and market.

Hike up to the ancient hilltop fortress for panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys .

Continuing north you can spend the night in a 13th-century citadel situated high above the UNESCO world heritage town of Berat , eating in beautiful local restaurants as you take in sweeping views of mountains and sunset.

Albanian Riviera as seen from above with a winding mountain road in the foreground and the bright sea in the background

Explore the unique town and architecture before getting back on the road for one of the most stunning drives in the world.

After leaving Berat you’ll head back to the coast via a winding and amazing mountain road, offering jaw-dropping views out across the Albanian riviera; keeping your eyes on the road is no easy task!

You can have lunch at a mountain-top restaurant overlooking the ocean before heading back down to have your choice of beaches to stay on. 

Spend as many days on the Albania Riviera as you please, feasting on fresh seafood (at amazing prices) and enjoying the pleasant lack of crowds compared to mainstream European beachside destinations.

There are multiple ferry trips between Corfu, Greece, and Saranda per day so fly into Corfu to save money.

Cars can be rented at Saranda port, consider paying a little extra for a well-known company to avoid scams.

This road trip in Europe can be done comfortably in a week but can be extended for as long as you can handle the sun-drenched beaches, cheap beer, and delicious seafood. 

Beach chairs and umbrellas facing toward the bright sea on the Albanian Riviera, as seen as part of a Europe road trip itinerary

Bosnia and Herzegovina

From Arzo of Arzo Travels

One of the best road trips to take in Europe is through Bosnia-Herzegovina.

This beautiful but definitely underrated country surprises its visitors who venture to enjoy a Bosnia road trip .

Many travelers drive over from Croatia: if so and you come from Dubrovnik or Split , start from Kravica Waterfalls, Pocitelj, and Blagaj.

You can visit all three beautiful places in one day before driving to Mostar which is just a few kilometers from Blagaj.

After spending a day in Mostar it is time to drive to Sarajevo , which makes for a scenic ride .

stari most bridge as seen from across the river, one of the best things to do in mostar bosnia and herzegovina

Pass the Neretva River, Lake Jablanica, and Konjic and spend a full day on the road with many breaks.

Sarajevo is a wonderful city where you can spend a day or two before ending your day trip.

For this European road trip itinerary, I would plan in about 5 days.

If you have more time (6 or 7 days), consider driving the M 18 toward Montenegro.

You will get to Bosnia´s longest and deepest canyon – Rakitnica Canyon – where you can do some water sports. 

sunset from the yellow fortress, one of the best things to do sarajevo bosnia

Eastern Crete

From Una of Wandernity

Crete is the largest island in Greece, and it takes several days to visit all of the must-see places on the island.

Renting a car and going on a road trip will make it possible to reach as many points of interest as possible, making Crete a fantastic option when planning a road trip in Europe.

Malia is a great choice for the apartment on the Eastern Crete. It’s known as a party location and has a lot of hotels, beaches, and attractions.

A perfect day-trip from Malia is going to   Spinalonga Island, Agios Nikolas town, and Richtis Gorge .

Spinalonga island is uninhabited, and tourists can reach the Venetian fortress and ruins of a former leper colony by boat.

You have to be there early to secure a place on a boat, as during the high season there might be queues.

Agios Nikolas is a coastal town with beautiful houses and streets leading from a hill to the seaside.

There is an old harbor surrounded by charming cafes and very photogenic architecture.

Agios Nikolaos in Crete as seen from above

Richtis Gorge is a green and lush hiking path ending at the seaside. The hike is around 4 kilometers long one-way.

It has a waterfall in the middle for a refreshing swim before going back up the gorge.

Another day-trip you can make from Malia is to the cave of Zeus, Knossos, and Heraklion.

Knossos is a place famous due to the well-known myth of the Minotaur. Half-man and half-bull, the Minotaur is said to have lived there in a labyrinth, and the ruins which exist today actually look like the labyrinth.

Knossos is a ceremonial and political center of the Minoan civilization and culture, which might be the oldest city in Europe.

Finally, Heraklion has an impressive Koules Fortress built by Venetians. It’s a perfect place to go for a walk and see the city from a long breakwater. 

Try to spend at least a few days dedicated to Eastern Crete if possible!

As the island is quite big, one way to save time on road trips is to rent an apartment on one side of the island for a few days, and then change the base to the other side.

boats in the old port of heraklion, a fun stop on a road trip crete

Transylvania, Romania

From Rachelle of Adventure is Never Far Away

With fortress-dotted hills strewn across valleys, quaint medieval towns, and narrow highways slicing through dense forest, road tripping through the countryside of Transylvania is like something out of a fairytale, not a feature that many other corners of the world can boast. 

Starting in Brasov, head north towards the vibrantly colorful town of Sighișoara and wander through the maze of cobblestoned streets.

Get lost in the old town city center, which also happens to double as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Continue northwest to Cluj-Napoca, the unofficial capital of Transylvania, and immerse yourself in the hopping local college nightlife scene.

Travel southwest to the charming town of Hunedoara and visit Corvin Castle, which resembles a real-life version of Hogwarts.

Wander through one of the largest castles in Europe and one of the Seven Wonders of Romania.

Then, start heading east to the city of Sibiu, home to some of the most dramatic houses in all of Europe: the old city center houses have eyes!

cityscape of sibiu romania from above, a unique place to visit on a road trip through europe

Catch a side-eye stare from the homes as you try your luck walking across the Bridge of Lies.

Finish your road trip through Transylvania by heading east back to Brasov, nestled snugly amongst the mighty Carpathian Mountains. 

Transylvania is one of those places that you should visit now before it explodes with tourism.

Prices are cheap, the countryside is beautiful (as you will discover on your road trip through Transylvania!), and it’s fairly easy to navigate! 

Road trippers should allow themselves about 5 days to make the journey, as many of Romania’s country roads have slower speed limits and cut through endless villages along the way. 

Corvin Castle in Transylvania with a bridge to the right side. Transylvania is one of the best road trips in Europe

From Julie & Zach of Ruhls of the Road

A road trip through Croatia is basically a gauntlet of adventure and absolutely stunning sites!

Start in bustling Zagreb and head through Plitvice Lakes National Park to Split, and finish in the walled city of Dubrovnik.

This adventure is full of unique sites and experiences that you can’t find in any other country on Earth!

Start your road trip in Zagreb and get your fill of Croatian city life. Head to a local restaurant and pub to get some fuel and prepare yourself for a once-in-a-lifetime Croatian adventure.

The first stop on the road is Plitvice Lakes National Park, which is about as close to the Garden of Eden as you can get.

Explore this paradise for a few days until you are ready to move on. Once you tear yourself away from Plitvice, head to the Croatian coast to Split. 

Postcard view of Plitvice Lakes Croatia showing lake and waterfalls seen from above in a vertical image

Split is a wonderful coastal town that gives you a truly Croatian experience.

Don’t miss wandering through Diocletian’s Palace, sampling the fresh seafood, or admiring the views from the promenade.

Relax and recharge in Split before making your drive down the coast to Dubrovnik, Croatia’s premier tourist destination.

Dubrovnik’s Old Town, used in Game of Thrones as King’s Landing, is an ancient walled city that makes for a unique adventure.

You can walk the entire wall, experiencing a city that has been home to so much of Europe’s history, and has still never been conquered!

Dubrovnik will be the perfect end to the perfect Croatian road trip.

Plan your trip for one week at least, with a few days in each place, and get ready for the adventure of a lifetime!

Fun Things to Do in Dubrovnik Croatia: view of Old Town from Minceta Fortress

Korçë to Përmet, Albania

From Anita of Travelling Balkans

One of the lesser-known drives within Albania and the Balkans is the road trip from Korçë to Përmet. 

Korçë is a lively city with the biggest cathedral in Albania as well as the best beer and Qofte (a sort of meatball).  There are many great things to do in Korce , so it makes a great starting point!

The road starting here and leading to Përmet, which is a small town known for its slow food movement and being close to the incredible nature spot Bënjë, is one not to be missed.

It winds through forests, small villages, and natural hot pools, and the road sits parallel to the border of Greece. 

thrift store selling various goods in korce albania

There are also many old bridges along the way which are perfect photo opportunities too. Just beware that you cannot cross safely due to half of the boards missing!

Make sure you stop off at Bënjë which is around 20 minutes from Përmet.

Here you can relax in many hot pools as well as marvel at the Old Ottoman bridge which is a true feature of this area. There is also a canyon and waterfall if you walk directly up the river.  

This road trip takes about 4 hours but do allow a couple of hours at Bënjë to relax in the hot pools as well as the various other stops along the way!

Stone footbridge built over a bright blue river, as seen on an Albanian road trip

Transfăgărășan Road, Romania

From Dominika of Sunday in Wonderland

If you aim to check all the best European road trips from your bucket list, you should definitely visit Transfăgărășan road in Romania.

This picturesque path among the Transylvanian mountains is one of the two most famous roads in the country (just next to Transalpina).

It was called the absolute best road trip in Europe by the Top Gear team, but even without this honor, it has a lot of stories to tell on its own.

The road was built by the Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu.

Although there were many easiest ways to travel through the Făgăraș Mountains peaks, he decided to build the Transfăgărășan road to show the power of Romanian technology.

The must-visit place during the Transylvania road trip is the Poenari Citadel.

aerial view of Poenari Castle romania with mountains in the background at golden hour

The ruins of the ancient fortress are situated on a high peak which you can reach by climbing ~1500 steps. The castle was the citadel of Vlad The Impaler.

He was the archetype of the famous character of a vampire from Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”.

There are many more  interesting facts about the Transfăgărășan road  that you should know like Bâlea Lake or Vidraru Dam. But this trip is something you simply must try on your own.

You can drive the Transfăgărășan road in a day, but be prepared! You’ll need to pay extremely good attention when driving, as this is far from the easiest driving in Europe.

Transfăgărășan road winding through the mountains of Romania on a cloudy day--definitely not the easiest road trip in Europe as far as driving goes!

Eastern Scotland

From Gemma of Two Scots Abroad

There’s no denying that Scotland’s most popular road trip is the North Coast 500 but there are other routes which are lesser-known, and have historic castles, cute villages, and fewer midges!

Starting in Scotland’s capital, collect your car from Edinburgh Airport to avoid the stress of city driving or brave the roads and catch the highlights of the city.

Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Mile, Dean Village, Calton Hill, and of course all the Harry Potter attractions should make your list.

Leaving Edinburgh drive over the Queensferry Crossing to the Kingdom of Fife. Park up at North Queensferry for views of the Forth Bridge which is a UNESCO Heritage Site.

Drive to Culross and walk back in time. Outlander fans might recognize Culross Palace.

Next, head to the ancient capital of Scotland, Dunfermline, and spend the afternoon at the Heritage Quarter and the Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries. 

historic stone bridge in a glen with church in the background in east scotland

The following morning, enjoy breakfast in Aberdour. Take a stroll along the beach then drive to the East Neuk stopping at Ellie and Anstruther for fishing village feels.

If you like to hike, consider staying in this area of Fife to do part of the Fife Coastal Path or head to St. Andrew’s for the night before moving on to Dundee.

From Dundee, head north to the city of Aberdeen stopping at Braemar and Ballater in the Cairngorms National Park.

At Stonehaven, visit Dunnottar Castle, you can’t miss it, literally! Arrive in Aberdeen and wander the streets discovering the Nuart street art mural trail all over the city. 

On the final day, head up to Slains Castle and on to Bullers of Buchan.

From here, you can turn back to Aberdeen for the night or drive to the gateway of the Scottish Highlands, Inverness.

It’s best to set aside a minimum of a week and a half for this road trip, but two weeks is even better.

Gemma Armit wearing tartan and looking out over a cliff on the east coast of Scotland

French Riviera

From Victoria of Bridges and Balloons

Experience the glitz and charm of the world-renowned French Riviera on this road trip along one of Europe’s most exciting coastlines.

Though not technically part of France, kick off your French Riviera road trip in Monaco, the fanciest of all the Riviera destinations where you’ll be among mega yachts, Lamborghinis, and diamonds aplenty.

For something more quaint, head to the hills and the village of Saint-Paul-de-Vence, a picturesque enclave famous for its art and the great artists who stayed there in the past.

Cannes is your next stop on this France road trip for some time by the beach and, if you time it right, the famous film festival.

St. Tropez is another popular spot for yachts and as such has the glitz that goes with that, but somehow also retains its charm with pretty streets and a laid-back vibe.

harbor of st tropez in the south of france road trip itinerary

Before your final stop in Marseille, stop at the breathtaking Calanques National Park, one of France’s most stunning sights with turquoise water and hidden coves.

And finally, in Marseille, enjoy the vibrant, multicultural port city with all its gastronomic and cultural delights.

Seven days is ideal for this road trip and I recommend going in the springtime before the crowds hit in the summer.

If you want to extend this road trip into more of the best places to visit in the south of France , consider turning inland to the Luberon Valley after visiting Marseille.

Buildings in front of harbor of Cassis France, their reflections are on the water in the bottom half of the photo.

Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland

From Allan of It’s Sometimes Sunny in Bangor

Probably one of the most iconic road trips in Europe is the Wild Atlantic Way, a 1,553-mile coastal road trip following the west coast along the Atlantic Sea.

It is also a route that connects many of Ireland’s more famous tourist attractions which include the Ring of Kerry, the Cliffs of Moher , Connemara, and of course the cobbled streets of Galway.

The route itself can start in either the north in County Donegal or the very south in County Cork which will likely depend on the vantage point of arrival.

For example, from Dublin (2h 50mins) or Shannon Airport (1h 45mins), it may be best to start in the south at Cork, although a more convenient start would be from  Belfast in Northern Ireland  which is just over an hour from the borders of Donegal.

Kate Storm in a cream cardigan near Inch Beach Ireland at sunset--this is an incredibly romantic place to visit on your Ireland honeymoon!

The overall time it then takes really depends on interests along the way!

With enough time, detours to places like the Slieve League Cliffs and Slea Head Drive are well worth your time.

While it is only an 8-9 hour drive direct from the most Northern Point at Malin Head, Donegal to the most Southern point of Mizen Head in Cork, this time would be at least triple when following the scenic coastal routes.

I would give at least 3 full days for any Wild Atlantic Way road trip, and, for a more leisurely drive visiting the various attractions along the way, I would give a week or so.  

Rocky coastline along Slea Head Drive, Dingle Peninsula drive Ireland

Alsace, France

From Elisa of World in Paris

Alsace is one of the best regions in France and there’s no better way to explore Alsace than on a road trip.

Alsace is best known for Strasbourg, the capital, and its picturesque villages.

It is also one of the most important  French wine regions and there are also beautiful natural sites and impressive châteaux to visit.

Start your trip in Strasbourg , Alsace’s capital, to visit Strasbourg’s amazing Gothic cathedral and the streets of La Petite France, in the Old Town, with beautiful architecture surrounded by canals.

Head to the south to visit Colmar , the most famous town in Alsace.

Colmar is a great place to taste some of Alsace’s typical dishes in one of its traditional restaurants (winstubs).

La Petite Venise in Colmar on a summer day. Visiting La Petite Venise is one of the best things to do in colmar france.

Spend the third day exploring a couple of picturesque towns like Kaysersberg, Riquewihr, or Eguisheim. This may sound like too much but they are really small towns.

Don’t leave Alsace without tasting its wines, especially the whites.

If you don’t know what to choose, let yourself be guided by the winegrowers and you will be fine.

If you want to hit the road to explore Alsace, a minimum of 3 days is recommended.

This will give you time to visit Strasbourg well (we recommend one full day) plus explore some of the region’s picturesque villages and do a couple of wine tastings.

If you are interested in hiking in the Vosges, then a minimum of 4 days will be necessary.

Kate Storm in a brown coat in the Alsace village of Riquewihr with a clock tower in the background

From Ben Holbrook of Driftwood Journals

The open road, cozy country pubs, and wild horses galore… Wales really is made for those who love road trips in Europe.

Many a visitor to the UK makes the mistake of only visiting Cardiff in their bid to “tick Wales off” their bucket list. Needless to say, they’re missing out in a big way. 

Instead, what they should really do is hop in a rental car and head straight to the glorious Brecon Beacons National Park.

Located less than an hour away from the English border (via the newly free-to-cross Prince of Wales Bridge), this is a land of endless rolling hills and unspoiled natural beauty. 

If you have time then be sure to make a pitstop in the charming town of Abergavenny on your way, aka the Gateway to Wales, followed by a quick stomp up Sugar Loaf Mountain. 

white castle in Abergavenny wales on a sunny day when road tripping europe

Once in the Brecon Beacons National Park itself, simply let the winding, pine-fringed backroads guide you and stop for photos and picnics at secluded spots along the way, such as the Talybont Reservoir and Usk Reservoir.

Then it’s time to wind the windows down, shift into top gear and cruise the inspiring Black Mountain Pass, named one of the greatest driving roads in the UK (made famous by none other than motoring icon Jeremy Clarkson). 

From the Brecon Beacons, you can continue west to the rugged Gower Peninsula and/or Pembrokeshire Coast National Park for some of the best surfing and camping in the UK.

And all of this beauty can be reached within just 2 or 3 hours from the English border! 

Ideally, set aside at least a few days to explore all that Brecon Beacons National Park and Wales as a whole have to offer.

Three horses grazing on a hill in Brecon Beacons National Park Wales, with rolling green hills and a small villages visible in the distance. Wales is one of the best underrrated road trips in Europe.

Brittany, France

From Shelley of Lifejourney4two

A Brittany road trip will introduce you to an amazing collection of destinations.

Brittany, located in the northwest corner of France, has a rich Breton culture and a mix of landscapes that makes a road trip here exciting and varied.   

Starting in the historic town of Kerhinet, you can wander through romantic thatched cottages, before moving along to the pretty seaside town of Sarzeau and its moated castle, Chateau de Suscinio, built in the middle ages.

The fabulous Bretagne coastline provides ample opportunity for beautiful coastal walks. Make sure to take time to explore the Quiberon Peninsula with its White Port Arch.

Further along, is the Pink Granite Coast and the seaside town of Perros-Guirec. In Plougrescant, you’ll come across an incredible house nestled impossibly between two rocks.

castle ruins of the coast of brittany france near saint-malo

As well as coastal and seaside experiences, this Brittany road trip will have you stepping back in time in the charming medieval town of Dinan.

Set within its old city walls, it is known for its quaint half-timbered houses, cobbled streets, and its array of historical monuments. 

Don’t forget to sample the local Brittany delicacies such as sweet crepes, savory galettes, and the butter-rich Bretagne Gateau. 

Four days will have you traveling about 500km through Brittany and will give you enough time to experience the variety of flavors Bretagne has to offer. 

Sandy beach in Brittany France as seen on a road trip Europe itinerary

Northern Ireland

From Amanda of Toddling Traveler

Northern Ireland is by far one of the best road trips in Europe.

Between the beautiful scenery and the unique outdoor activities, it’s something that needs to be experienced at least once.

The best area for a 1 week road trip in Northern Ireland is the Causeway Coast and Glens, after spending a couple of days in Belfast. 

With towns like Cushendall, Ballycastle, Ballintoy, and Bushmills, there are so many great places to stop along the way. 

From Belfast, you can make a stop at Carrickfergus for the castle and seaside restaurants.

Between the views of the ocean on one side and the sheep nestled among the cliffs on the other side, there’s so much to take in.

Cushendall is a quaint little seaside town with the friendliest people, and it’s a great location for sightseeing in Northern Ireland. 

From Cushendall, you can drive through the beautiful Glens of Antrim and make a stop at the Dark Hedges for any Game of Thrones fans.

Kate Storm in a red dress facing away from the camera at the Dark Hedges, one of the most popular locations to see on a Northern Ireland road trip itinerary

Another famous stop on the Causeway Coastal Route is the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge which takes you a few hundred feet above sea level. 

Ballintoy Harbour and Fullerton Arms are two additional stops that are popular with Game of Thrones fans. 

From Cushendall, you can change your home base to Bushmills for a change of scenery. 

Bushmills Distillery and the Giants Causeway are two sites that shouldn’t be missed in that area. For golf fans, Portrush is a popular seaside town that also boasts a world-famous golf course.

If your Northern Ireland road trip allows for more time, spending more time in Portrush or Portstewart is definitely recommended as well. 

7-10 days is ideal for a road trip through Northern Ireland, but you can easily spend more time if you’re exploring beyond Antrim County.

giants causeway in northern ireland on a sunny day looking toward the island

Loire Valley + Normandy, France

From Brianna of Curious Travel Bug

The  Loire Valley and Normandy are two of France’s most beautiful areas and combined, they make for a fantastic road trip from Paris.

This European road trip is perfect for those who enjoy the countryside, castles, and adorable villages. 

Start your trip by driving to Amboise from Paris.

Amboise is small enough to be walkable and has a scenic chateau that overlooks the town, and a great base for visiting the Loire Valley.

From Amboise, you can visit famous chateaux like Chateau Chenonceau, Chambord, Villandry, and Usse.

After exploring the Loire Valley head towards Normandy and the coast.

A great halfway point to break up the driving is Chateau d’Angers, a massive castle with huge towers.

Stay in the village of Pontorson to visit nearby Brittany, towns like Dinan and Saint-Malo are both worth a visit.

Mont St. Michel in northern France with its reflection showing in the water in the bottom half of the photo

From Pontorson you will be only 20 minutes from the incredible Mont Saint Michel.

Mont Saint Michel is what brings most people to Normandy and it is certainly impressive.

If you can, try to visit both at high and low tides as the contrast between the two is interesting to witness.

Drive further into Normandy and stay in the town of Bayeux. Bayeux is a cute medieval town made famous by both the Bayeux Tapestry and its proximity to the D-Day Beaches.

The D-Day sites are worth spending at least a day exploring.

Finish up your road trip by stopping in the port town of Honfleur to see its cute harbor.

Head back to Paris, stopping en route in Giverny to see Monet’s gardens.

Other places to include on your itinerary if you have more time are the city of Rouen and the cliffs at Etretat.

This route requires at least 6 days but you can easily spend much longer exploring both the Loire Valley and Normandy as these areas are rich with history, charming villages, and castles to explore.  

White cliffs of Etretat with bright blue water to the left side of the photo. Etretat is one of the best places to visit in France

Cotswolds Road Trip

From Laura of Travelers Universe

If you have more than 3 days in London and are ready for a quick European road trip, then a visit to the Cotswolds is a must. No other area in the UK compares to the old-fashioned charm and heritage of the Cotswolds.

When planning your road trip route I recommend you start with the 4 must-see villages in the Cotswolds: Bourton-on-the-Water, Upper Slaughter, Lower Slaughter, and Bibury.

Bourton-on-the-Water has a unique appeal to everyone. It is regularly voted as one of the prettiest villages in England and is famous for its honey-colored stone architecture and idyllic scenes.

The village is known as the Venice of the Cotswolds and it’s the perfect place for you to enjoy some relaxing time by the River Windrush.

Upper and Lower Slaughter share an interesting name that could be translated as a ‘miry place’.

Lower Slaughter has been very well conserved and walking alongside the stream seems like a trip into the past. 

english village of lower slaughter with creek and bridge in the foreground

There is no wonder the village has been used for filming productions on several occasions. 

Upper Slaughter is equally as charming. Interesting fact – it lost nobody in the First World War and that’s why these days it is considered to be a sainted village. 

If you are by car, I recommend parking in Bourton-on-the-Water and walking from there, as there is limited parking in the Slaughters. 

When it comes to Bibury, everybody will quote William Morris as he famously said that Bibury is ‘the most beautiful village in England’. 

Well, this should be convincing enough to check it out for yourself. 

Don’t miss the picturesque Arlington Row cottages, dating back to 1380. Arlington Row is one of the most photographed places in Cotswold.

Recommended Road Trip Route

Try to set aside at least a couple of days to enjoy road-tripping the main villages of the Cotswolds.

Castle Combe village in the Cotswolds with a small stone bridge in the foreground and stone houses in the background

Route des Grand Alpes, France

From Kat of Wandering Bird Adventures

One of the best road trips in Europe is the Route des Grandes Alpes, in the southeast corner of France. 

It’s possible to drive this route by car and stop along the way at one of the many beautiful towns, but a better option is to   travel the Alps by motorhome  and stop up a mountain in the middle of nowhere.

Technically, the Route des Grande Alpes starts in Lake Geneva and goes south over the highest mountain passes until you reach the French Riviera, but you can easily drive it in reverse if you wish.

Highlights include breathtaking mountain views; the Milky Way at night; going up Mont Blanc in a cable car; exploring picturesque Lake Annecy and the awe-inspiring Gorge du Fier.

Of all the places to enjoy a road trip in Europe, the French Alps are definitely one of the most awe-inspiring! 

view of the french alps from a ski resort in chamonix, one of the best european winter places to visit

This road trip can take anywhere from 3-5 days and the best time to go is late spring or early autumn, (May/ June or September/ October.) 

The reason for this is the weather (winter snow means road closures in the mountains) and also cyclists- you will not believe the number of cyclists who ride up and down these crazy roads! 

And that’s not including the Tour de France which regularly passes through this route- another reason to avoid July!

Chateau d'Annecy as seen from between blooming tulips over a canal. Annecy is one of the best small towns in France.

Dublin to Dingle (Cross-Country Ireland Road Trip)

By Jennifer P. (aka Dr. J) of Sidewalk Safari

A road trip from Dublin to Dingle is one of the longest you can undertake in Ireland.

Dingle is one of the most picturesque places in Ireland and is well-worthy of a road trip in itself. However, sometimes getting there is more than half the fun.

Take a road trip to Dingle and use the 5-hour drive to explore lesser-known parts of Ireland on the way.

Start at Birr Castle, a 19th-century house and gardens that was home to the world’s largest telescope for nearly 75 years.

Next up, drive to Adare, which is best known for quaint thatched cottages and for being one of the most beautiful small towns in Ireland .

Adare is an ideal road trip pitstop; there are cool things to see and do but not so many things that one is tempted to linger (budget 30-60 minutes).

Thatched roof cottages in Adare Ireland with white walls and a red door. Adare is one of the best small towns in Ireland

Listowel is known as the literary capital of Ireland because writers like Bryan MacMahon and John B. Keane once lived there.

Grab a coffee on the colorful square and follow in the footsteps of some of Ireland’s best-known writers.

Do not miss Foynes and the Flying Boat Museum! Fun fact: Irish coffee is believed to have been invented in Foynes.

Finally, stop at Belvedere House in Mullingar for its follies.

Follies are large-scale structures that look ancient but are actually modern.

Belvedere House also has a Jealous Wall erected in a feud between two brothers centered around alleged adultery. 

Recommended length: 2 days. Take one day en route to Dingle and a second day on the way back to Dublin to cover all the stops referenced.

Kate Storm standing on a pebble beach on Dingle Peninsula, Ireland. Minard Castle is behind her. This is a great example of what to wear in Ireland!

Montpellier to Toulouse, France

From Maura of Travel Kiwis

The region of Occitanie in southern France has spectacular scenery and diverse history.   

Start in the pedestrian-friendly and vibrant city of   Montpellier for shopping and French cuisine.

From Montpellier, allow an hour to travel the coastline dotted with pink flamingos to the fishing village of Sete, a perfect place for lunch and fabulous seafood.  

One-hour inland is Beziers, one of the oldest cities in France where high above the river Orb sits the Bezier Cathedral.

Bezier is famous for the Orb Aqueduct, which carries the Canal du Midi over the river, and the Fonserannes Locks, a staircase of nine water levels, which traverses the canal.   

Half an hour from Beziers is the old Roman town of Narbonne.

historic bridge and river in narbonne france with gothic cathedral in the background, an interesting stop on europe road trips

You can explore the Hordeum, a labyrinth of underground warehouses when Narbonne was a Roman port, and view part of the first Roman road in France, Via Domitia. 

An hour from Narbonne, overlooking the Aude river, is Carcassonne.

The spectacular UNESCO heritage site Chateau Comtal de Carcassonne is perfect for a short stay. Make sure to try the local dish Cassoulet.

The final stop is Toulouse, the capital city of Occitanie, referred to as the La Ville Rose with its pink terracotta brick buildings.

Visit the Aeroscopia museum to learn more about the Airbus A380, built-in Toulouse; it is the largest airliner in the world.

This route is 276kms taking four hours with no stops. So, take your time and plan a night or two along the way.

kate storm and ranger storm standing in front of medieval walls of carcassonne france

Scottish Highlands & Islands

From Jessica of One Girl, Whole World

Exploring deep into the Scottish Highlands and islands with one of the most stunning European road trips you can take.

A  10-day road trip itinerary  has gorgeous landscapes, interesting history, hiking options, boat trips and ferries, and few crowds.

There are infinite route combinations, but here is one that’s a great combination of landscapes, history, and activity, and avoids long stretches of driving. You can start from anywhere, but Edinburgh or Glasgow is the most common.  

Head toward the upper Highlands, covering Glen Torridon, Applecross, and (weather-permitting) driving the famous and slightly nerve-wracking Bealach na Ba pass. 

Then spend a few days on the Isle of Skye, possibly hiking the stunning Quiraing and taking a boat trip from Elgol to the misty Black Cuillin mountains.

Colorful village set along the water on the Isle of Skye in Scotland with boats parked in the harbor--Scotland is home to some of the best Europe itinerary road trip options around!

Then get further out to islands that most tourists rarely visit. 

You can take a 90-minute ferry north to the Isle of Harris & Lewis and spend a day or two driving the island and experiencing the turquoise beaches and ancient standing stones. 

Once you’re back on the mainland, consider hitting beautiful Glen Coe and the Glenfinnan Viaduct (the Hogwarts Express!) in the Highlands on your way west to the tiny Isle of Iona. 

Iona has both beauty and some of the earliest Christian history in Scotland, and also a perfect base to take a boat trip to the almost-mythical Isle of Staffa. 

Finally, spend a day or two exploring charming Edinburgh at either the beginning or end of your trip. 

The length of your visit is flexible, but to cover everything above you should plan for at least 10 days–if you can set aside two weeks, that would be even better!

jacobite steam train crossing viaduct in the scottish highlands

Northumberland Coastal Route, England

From Stuart Forster of Go Eat Do

The Northumberland Coastal Route is a scenic driving route that runs for 48 miles between Blyth and Berwick-upon-Tweed.

The marked route meanders past broad beaches and castles built when this region saw regular raids by cattle rustlers, known as border reivers, and Scottish armies.

If you choose to drive on the most direct route, the A1, the journey between Berwick and Newcastle takes just 75 minutes.

Plan at least a couple of days to pause along the way and take walks to view the castles at Bamburgh and Dunstanburgh.

It’s also worth taking a reflective stroll on the golden sand of Alnmouth Beach after popping into nearby Alnwick to shop at Barter Books, England’s biggest second-hand bookstore, and see the castle where Harry Potter movies were filmed.  

Following the Northumberland coastal route offers opportunities to pause for locally landed seafood at the Fish Shack in Amble or The Jolly Fisherman pub in Craster.

alnwick castle in england

The fishing village of Craster gives its name to traditionally smoked kippers, a local delicacy. Craster kippers pair well with Earl Grey tea, which was first mixed for consumption at Howick Hall, the 19th-century British prime minister’s estate in  England’s most northerly county .

Check the tidal table before driving to or from Lindisfarne, otherwise known as Holy Island.

Many a driver has had to abandon their vehicle in the face of rapidly advancing waters.

We suggest completing this trip in about two days.

Dunstanburgh castle england in the distance with rocky landscape in the foreground

Ring of Kerry, Ireland

From Cath of Travel Around Ireland

One of the best road trips to take in Europe is one in which you visit the Ring of Kerry in Ireland .

Encompassing the Killarney National Park and part of the epic Wild Atlantic Way, this part of Southern Ireland is filled with beauty that will leave you awe-inspired.

This is a popular tourist area of the region and it is best explored by car or motorbike.

Points of interest to stop and explore include the Gap of Dunloe, a beautiful valley snaking through the MacGillycuddy Reeks Mountains.

You cannot drive a car through it, but motorbikes, cyclists, hikers, and joggers can traverse it. There are tourist horses and carts which can take those in cars into the Gap to enjoy its beauty.

At the top of the Gap lies Kate’s Cottage, a historic coaching house, now with a restaurant, bar, and craft shop.

Not far from this is Lady’s View, affording magnificent views across the Killarney National Park.

Kate Storm in a blue long-sleeved shirt overlooking Killarney Natoinal Park--a must-see spot when planning a trip to Ireland!

You should also take a day to visit Ross Castle and Muckross House, Gardens, and Farms, both of which are steeped in history.

Got a Star Wars fan on your hands? Then a boat trip from the Ring of Kerry to Skellig Michael is a must. It featured in Star Wars VII – The Force Awakens.

Skellig Michel is famous for its 6th to 8th-century Christian monastery and was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.

Another site to visit during your road trip around the Ring of Kerry is Torc Waterfall.

This lies only 7km from Killarney Town and is a beautiful waterfall with a height of 20 meters and a cascade of 110 meters long. 

Many of the towns that you pass through are worth stopping in for a cuppa or a meal including Kenmare, Sneem, and Killorglin.

The town with the most choice when it comes to accommodation and eating options is Killarney and should be your starting point when traveling around this stunning part of Ireland.

Killarney, the town at which you should start your visit to the Ring of Kerry, lies 300km southwest of Dublin and it will take you approximately four hours by car to reach this quaint little town.

Although you could drive the outer circuit of the Ring of Kerry in one day, you will need more than a day to visit the many places to stop around this 179km-long circular route in County Kerry.

Kate Storm in a yellow raincoat standing in front of Torc Waterfall in Killarney National Park Ireland

Germany’s Romantic Road

From Hannah & Adam Lukaszewicz of Getting Stamped

Southern Germany is home to the Romantic Road, a journey from Wurzberg to Fussen that captures both the scenic beauty and beautiful, fairytale castles Germany has to offer. 

Start out by stopping at the Wurzburg Residence, a stunning palace with extensive gardens.

Next up is the Neuschwanstein Castle which has many great viewpoints, like Mary’s Bridge. Another castle in the vicinity that’s worth a stop is the Hohenschwangau Castle.

Those are the most popular stops on this European road trip, but also make sure to stop at some of the charming Bavarian villages along the way, such as Rothenburg ob de Tauber and Würzburg. 

For the average tourist, it is suggested to have a three-day itinerary for the Romantic Road .

It’s just enough time to see all the highlights on the route.

However, it is up to you to extend the trip by a few extra days if you’d like to explore more villages on the way. 

Rothenburg ob de Tauber on Germany's Romantic Road, one of the most popular road trips in Europe. Image from Getting Stamped.

Austrian Alps

From Kati Walzl of Moon & Honey Travel

Austria is synonymous with the Alps. While Austria’s cities are easily accessible by transit, its mountains are best explored on a road trip.

If you love hiking and scenic alpine roads, follow this Vienna to Innsbruck road trip anytime between June and October.  

Start in Vienna, the capital city of Austria before driving directly to Filzmoos, a small alpine town in the Dachstein mountains.

Here, you can hike to scenic alp huts and explore the Gosaukamm, a subrange of the Dachstein.

After hiking in the Northern Limestone Alps of Salzburg, your road trip continues to the heart of Hohe Tauern National Park, which encompasses Austria’s highest mountains.

Drive the celebrated Grossglockner High Alpine Road to East Tyrol. If you want to experience the glaciers of the Vendiger Group, explore the lesser-known Virgental and Gschlösstal valleys.

Next, head west to Mayrhofen, which is the perfect base for exploring the Zillertal mountains.

woman standing in front of bright turqouise lake in the austrian alps, one of the best road trips europe

If there’s one range that epitomizes “the Alps” this is it.

After a few days in Zillertal, continue your drive to Innsbruck.

If you have more time, drive to Vorarlberg to explore the Rätikon Alps for a few days.

Tip: If you rent a car in another country, don’t forget to purchase a “Vignette” before driving on the Austrian “Autobahn” (highway). 

You’ll need 10 – 16 days to complete this route.

Person sitting on a small footbridge in Zillertal Alps in Austria, with a lake and mountain range visible in the distance

Czech Republic

From Celine of Family Can Travel

While Prague is certainly worth the visit, there’s so much more to see in the Czech Republic, and the best way to see it is by planning a Central European road trip.

Plan to make four major stops along the way: Cesky Krumlov , Karlovy Vary, Bohemian Switzerland National Park, and Bohemian Paradise.

The real charm of having a car is not only getting to each of these places but visiting some incredible sights near each of them.

Near Cesky Krumlov, explore the ruins of Hrad Divi.

After visiting the multitude of colonnades around Karlovy Vary, stretch your legs with a hike from Karlovy Vary to the charming town of Loket.

Next, leave the cities behind to enjoy the more natural side of the Czech Republic. 

colorful houses in historic Karlovy Vary in the fall, a czech town that is a great option for driving tours in europe

Hiking in Bohemian Switzerla nd National Park to see the Pravcicka Brana (the largest natural stone bridge in Europe) and then continuing on to the Wild Gorge Loop will give you a real sense of the varying landscapes you can find in the Czech Republic.

If you find yourself with some extra time in Bohemian Switzerland, the Bastei Bridge in Saxon Switzerland National Park (Germany) is only a short drive away.

The Tisa Walls are also worth a stop.

Before returning to Prague, make one final stop in Bohemian Paradise to see Trotsky Castle and the incredible rock formations on the hike from Hruba Skala to Valdstejn Castle.

This Czech Republic road trip could be done in one week, but 10 days would be better to add in a few extra places to visit along the way and truly enjoy all that the area has to offer.

Winter in Český Krumlov: View of the City

East Germany Castle & Nature Road Trip

From Annemarie Strehl of Germany on the Brain

For an East Germany road trip heavy on castles and natural beauty, start in the gorgeous state capital of Mecklemburg-Vorpommern.

It‘s one hour away from Hamburg by train (90 minutes with a car) and there are plenty of things to see in Schwerin .

Its center is simply gorgeous, with typical Baltic houses and historic buildings, and from here, it’s a short walk to the fairy tale castle of Schwerin.

It was modeled after French chateaus and has even been featured in Hollywood productions.

From Schwerin, you can easily reach Berlin, where you can stroll around Charlottenburg Palace or Friedrichsfelde Palace.

Those beautiful baroque buildings can make you almost forget you are in a big and busy metropolis.

Complete your visit in the North with a trip down to Potsdam’s extensive Sanssouci Castle estate.

aerial view of berlin tv tower at sunset, one of the most interesting european cities to visit

For Dresden alone, you can easily fill a week exploring castles inside and around the city.

Your starting point should be at the Zwinger and move on to the famous Frauenkirche, to name just two iconic attractions. For more castles, check out Pillnitz or Moritzburg.

Complete your journey in the neighboring state of Thuringia and visit charming Jena, Weimar, and Erfurt.

Weimar especially looks straight out of a history book in the best of ways.

In total, such a trip should be no shorter than seven days so you don’t have to rush through your destinations.

Driving times are between one to three hours from one place to the next, so it’s definitely doable to do one city per day.

However, for places like Berlin or Dresden you can easily schedule in multiple days.

schwerin castle in germany with lake in the foreground, modeled after french chateaux

The Italian Dolomites

From Kristen & Jeff Miller of Our Passion for Travel

Fans of jagged mountains, windy roads, and stunning landscapes will rejoice in a   Dolomites road trip .

Picking up a car in Verona and heading north, make your first stop in the hillside town of Trento. This stunning town is perfectly wedged in a valley with dramatic cliffs surrounding you.

Choose to spend a night here or head further north to the cute town of Ortisei.

Here, you can excite yourself with some of the winding passes that will take you from blazing sunshine in the middle of summer, up to near-freezing temperatures.

Admire the snow falling off the mountains in the Gardena and Sella Pass.

Later, mix it up with the majestic Lago di Carezza, one of the greenest alpine lakes you’ll ever lay your eyes on.

lake carezza italy with dolomites in the background on a sunny day when road tripping northern italy

Ortisei is also home to the highest alpine meadow, Alpe di Siusi. Spend a day up top wandering in awe as the lush green grass meets the jagged peaks and rich blue skies.

Leaving Ortisei behind, consider Cortina d’Ampezzo as your next overnight destination.

Not only is Cortina d’Ampezzo home to the future 2026 winter Olympics, but it’s well located to explore the surrounding areas.

Lago di Braies is the insta-famous lake, complete with rowboats to fill your feed with.

A short drive from Cortina, you’ll find Tre Cime di Lavaredo.

The entry of €30 to the national park may seem steep, but it’s about as picturesque as you’ll find in this region.

Those jagged peaks you’ve been admiring are so much closer here, and rip into the sky like daggers.

This road trip through the Dolomites can be done comfortably in as little as 4 days.

It is easily stretched to 2 weeks depending on your pace and how much hiking you’re contemplating. Also, be sure to allow time for good weather (it can be temperamental like all alpine regions). 

View of the Italian Dolomites on a clear day with a village visible below it.

Vienna to Budapest Road Trip

From Pashmina of The Gone Goat

Imagine traversing through stunning countryside covering charming and beautiful towns and some very obscure ones, while crossing the capitals of these three countries Vienna, Bratislava, and Budapest .

Whether you want to start your road trip in Vienna and end it with a weekend in Budapest , or vice versa, a road trip in these places is often brimming with exciting stories, culture, and unique landscapes.

Although the entire trip is approximately 243km and may only take you 3 hours to drive, this trip is best done with a detour spending time in Lake Neusield, Austria, followed by Sopron, Gyor, and Esztergom in Hungary. 

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can take the other route and pass through Slovakia and see firsthand what it is like to see a new generation of Slovakians who are eager to bring modern elements and street culture to their lives.

Tips for Airbnb Hosts: Hiking in Slovakia

You can also stop in Bratislava and casually stroll through the old town while taking in the picturesque views of the architecture.

Compared to its neighboring cities, Bratislava is unhurried and feels small and quiet, and deserves that extra time to slow down, people watch and take in what you can.

The recommended time to spend on this Central European road trip is about 4 to 5 days. 

Prague or Budapest: Budapest view of Danube

From Kate of I Live 4 Travel

The small country of Luxembourg is a great place for a European road trip. 

It is a country dominated by castles and old towns that you can walk around and some beautiful countryside to hike in. 

If you fly into Luxembourg then it is very easy to rent a car .

A trip to Luxembourg would not be complete without a visit to Luxembourg City and here you need to spend a day exploring the old town and visiting the Bock Casemates, walk the Chemin de la Corniche and visit Fort Thungen. 

After visiting Luxembourg City head north to visit the beautiful castle of Vianden, the town is worth a walk around and you can always get the chairlift slightly higher up the mountain to get a view of the town and the castle before walking down to visit the impressive castle.

It is worth stopping here for lunch in one of the many cafes in the town.

vianden castle from a distance overlooking the village in the mountains of luxembourg

Next drive to Bourscheid Castle, which is only partially restored but has amazing views down the valley.

After visiting Bourscheid head across to the little town of Esch-Sur-Sure, it is in a horseshoe shape and surrounded by a river running along the outside, it is a beautiful town and it’s worth a walk up to the ruins of the castle located on the top of the hill in the middle of the town.

If you have a third day then head across to Echternach and hike part of the Mullerthal Trail.

If you do not want a long hike, you can just drive the route and explore the highlights.

The drive through the countryside to these places is stunning and it’s recommended you take 2 or 3 days to explore the country of Luxembourg.

View of Luxembourg City from above. Luxembourg's small size makes it an ideal short European road trip itinerary

From Dhara of It’s Not About the Miles

Looking to complete one of the best road trips in Europe? Consider Poland!

In about 10 days, you can see the best of this northern European country. 

Begin your trip in Warsaw, the capital of Poland. Warsaw’s Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

World War II bombing destroyed quite a bit of the city, but it has been reconstructed.

Apart from Old Town, Powazki Cemetery, the monument to the heroes of the Warsaw Ghetto, and the Presidential Palace are must-visits.

From Warsaw, drive to Krakow where you can visit Market Square, St. Mary’s Church, and the famous Wawel Castle.

Old Town Krakow is gorgeous so plan on a walking tour to admire the architecture.

From Krakow, drive to Auschwitz  to tour the former concentration camp. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

View of St. Mary's Basilica in Main Market Square, a must-see destination when visiting Krakow in 2 days!

Next, travel to Wroclaw, with its beautiful Old Town. Market Square has stunning architecture.

From Wroclaw, drive to Torun, one of the best-preserved medieval towns in Europe. Torun is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the birthplace of Nicolas Copernicus.

Next, drive to the port city of Gdansk, the birthplace of Lech Walesa’s Solidarity Movement.

Gdansk has a beautiful Old Town as well. A   walking tour of Gdansk Old Town  is the best way to experience the sights.

Also do not forget a stop at Westerplatte, where the first shots of WWII were fired.

Return to Warsaw to complete your road trip through Poland. On the way, you can stop at Malbork Castle, the largest castle in the world!

This Poland road trip is best completed in about 10 days.

View of Town Hall Tower with Cloth Hall in the foreground in Main Market Square, one of the best things to see in Krakow Poland

South Styria Wine Road, Austria

From Lori of Travlin Mad

The  South Styria Wine Road  in southern Austria is the perfect European road trip for food and wine lovers.

This 44-mile-long patchwork of woodlands, lush rolling hills, and verdant vineyards just an hour from Graz is the southern part of Styria, known as the Green Heart of Austria, and looks more Tuscan than Alpine.

This part of Austria also borders northern Slovenia so combining both as part of a multi-country road trip in Europe is a great idea.

Fall is an especially good time to visit when autumn colors begin to appear in the vineyards and the first wine is being pressed.

People gather outdoors at local wineries along Wine Road drinking stürm wine and roasting chestnuts around a crackling fire.

Through the breeze, you’ll hear the unusual clacking sound of the klapotetz windmills spinning slowly through the countryside, designed to ward off birds and other pests who tend to gobble up the grapes.

Vineyard with hundreds of grape vines planted on a rolling hill with a windmill on the foreground on the left side of the photo in Austria

Food lovers should start their tour with a visit to Vinofaktur Genussregal, the largest store in Styria featuring over 2,500 Styrian wine and culinary products from over 250 regional producers.

For lunch or dinner, local winery-owned buschenshanks are the place to go for platters of local smoked meats and cheeses.

It’s all so quintessential Styria and the perfect destination for a fall road trip through Europe.

Though you can complete this European road trip in a day, it’s best to set aside at least a couple of days if you’d like to leisurely explore what the wine route has to offer (and allow your designated driver some chances to sample the wine).

clock tower of graz austria at sunset with fall foliage in the foreground

From Inma of A World to Travel

There are a surprising number of things to do in Latvia , the beautiful Baltic Republic located in northeast Europe–and it’s possible to cross the entire country in six hours!

The road trip itinerary suggested here covers 6 of the wonders of this country, from west to east, starting in the immediate vicinity of the Lithuanian border.

From exceptional natural landscapes to charming villages and large cities, this European road trip itinerary has something for everyone!

Stop first in Liepaja, known for its beaches with dunes and its constant wind, before moving on to Kuldiga, a picturesque village in the Western part of the country.

ruins of bunkers of a beach in liepaja latvia

Be sure to make time for the unique Kemeri National Park, where it is possible to practice bog-walking with the right equipment and a guide!

Riga, the capital of Latvia and your next stop on this Europe road trip, needs no introduction. Neither does its historic center, central market, and lively nightlife.

From there, move on to visit Sigulda, a historical village that has lots to offer to lovers of active tourism.

Finally, pay a visit to Gauja National Park, located near the border with Estonia. There is no other place like this in the whole country to go hiking on its many trails. 

If possible, set aside about a week to explore this European road trip route through Latvia.

Colorful buildings of Riga Latvia as seen from above. Latvia makes a fabulous, lesser-known European road trip itinerary!

From Jo of Lost Wanders

There’s plenty to see in Lithuania other than the trendy capital Vilnius and it’s well worth having your own transportation for a road trip in this beautiful Baltic country .

The first stop is the Hill of Crosses near Siauliai to see a unique memorial dedicated to the many unknown deaths of the Lithuanian uprising against Russian rule.

The hill now holds over 100,000 crosses memorializing people from around the globe with more being added daily.

A two-hour drive west uncovers an old nuclear missile silo, one of only three left in the world, that’s been turned into a Cold War Museum.

It’s located deep within Žemaitijos National Park, down bumpy gravel roads, where you can also get a chance to spot wild animals such as Lynx.

aerial view of trakai castle, a fun stop on a lithuania road trip through europe itinerary

Another hour’s drive towards the Baltic Sea, Klaipeda is the base for heading out to the Curonian spit, a large sandbar covering Lithuania’s coastline.

The town is famous for its spas and long open beaches.

Back down towards Vilnius, Trakai Castle is a must-see.

If you do just one castle on this trip make it this one. It sits on an island out on a lake where you can pedal and paddleboard in the summer months. 

You can do this trip in a week but allow 10 days to 2 weeks to fully see everything and don’t miss a couple of days in the capital.

Summer is by far the most favorable time to do this trip, crowds aren’t as big as in Central Europe and winters can get very cold for taking northern European road trips!

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4 photos of Europe: beach in Spain, Cotswolds village, Luxembourg City, and Algarve Coast. Black and red text on a white background in the center reads "50+ Bucket List Road Trips in Europe"

About Kate Storm

Image of the author, Kate Storm

In May 2016, I left my suburban life in the USA and became a full-time traveler. Since then, I have visited 50+ countries on 5 continents and lived in Portugal, developing a special love of traveling in Europe (especially Italy) along the way. Today, along with my husband Jeremy and dog Ranger, I’m working toward my eventual goal of splitting my life between Europe and the USA.

2 thoughts on “55 Epic Road Trips in Europe (Itinerary Ideas + Tips!)”

These road trip ideas are fantastic. I’d love to do the Dublin to Dingle trip someday.

We’ve done that one ourselves, and can absolutely endorse it! It’s phenomenal.

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35 Best Weekend Trips in Europe (Plus Where to Stay)

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Home » 35 Best Weekend Trips in Europe (Plus Where to Stay)

Have you been wondering about the best weekend trips in Europe? I’ve got you covered!

Weekend trips in Europe can be a truly magical experience. From the sunny beaches of Greece to the rolling hills of Italy, our travels have taken us through many European destinations.

But of course, we cannot have covered every destination in Europe for this list so we have had a little help!

All of the 35 best European weekend breaks have been hand-selected by experienced travel bloggers who know all about the best spots for a weekend getaway.

best weekend trips in europe - Lake Como

All of the destinations are places that are within easy reach and offer incredible experiences that you’ll always remember. Ready for your next adventure? Keep reading and find out our selection of the 35 best weekend trips in Europe – perfect for those looking for an exciting escape!

35 of The Best Weekend Trips in Europe

With 35 best cities for a weekend trip in Europe to choose from, it can be difficult to pick the right one.

From culture-filled Prague to historical Rome, our list of must-see European cities offers something special for every type of traveler.

1. Paris, France

Paris Notre Dame

Paris is one of the most romantic getaways in Europe.

With its iconic sights like the Eiffel Tower, winding cobblestone streets, and charming cafes, it’s easy to see why Paris is a top destination for couples looking for an unforgettable weekend.

Whether it’s exploring the City of Light together or snuggling up during a picnic in one of its many public gardens, Paris offers endless activities and memories that you’ll keep forever.

For those dreaming of a weekend Europe trips full of romance and adventure, look no further than Paris!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Paris:

  • Eiffel Tower Summit or Second Floor Access : Discover the beauty of Paris from new heights. Enjoy access to the 2nd floor and upgrade for breathtaking panoramic views from the summit.
  • Louvre Reserved Access and Boat Cruise : Explore the iconic Louvre Museum with a reserved access ticket and cruise the River Seine anytime to experience the city from its historic waterway.

How to get to Paris

Traveling to Paris is a breeze with two major airports: Charles de Gaulle and Orly.

Both are conveniently located near the city center and connected by RER trains. Tickets for the train cost around €10.

Where to stay in Paris

The Idol Hotel has all the amenities you want, with impeccable service.

Conveniently located near Opéra Garnier and Pigalle for when you are out and about sight seeing.

Idol Hotel Paris

When back at the hotel enjoy the sun terrace or indulge in room service with a minibar stocked with snacks for you and the kids!

2. Venice, Italy

Venice best weekend getaway in Europe

Venice is one of the best cities for a weekend trip in Europe.

With its winding canals, fascinating architecture, delicious food, and beautiful art and culture, it’s no wonder why Venice tops many lists of best weekend destinations in Europe.

From the sweeping views from San Giorgio Maggiore to the bustling Piazza San Marco and historic churches throughout the city, Venice is an unmissable destination.

Must-see sights of Venice include Rialto Bridge, the San Marco Piazza, and the famous Bridge of Sighs.

It’s no surprise that millions of visitors flock to this unique city each year, it truly has something for everyone!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Venice:

  • Grand Canal Gondola Ride : Experience the essence of Venice as you explore hidden waterways near the Grand Canal on a picturesque gondola ride. Listen to in-app commentary to learn about the city as you admire the sights.
  • St. Mark’s Basilica Fast-Track Entry and Audio Guide : Explore the beauty of St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice with a skip-the-line ticket. Learn fascinating facts about the artwork inside using an audio tour on your mobile device.

How to get to Venice

Venice has the small Marco Polo Venice Airport, where you can take a bus or boat into the city.

The best way to arrive is by train to the Santa Lucia Train Station, located on the northwestern edge.

There’s also a bus terminal and parking garages nearby at Piazzale Roma.

Where to stay in Venice

The B&B Ca’ Bonvicini is a lovely B&B in the heart of Venice! Situated in a tranquil yet convenient location near all attractions.

B&B Ca' Bonvicini Venice

Just a 7-minute walk from the renowned Rialto Bridge, this property features spacious Venetian-style rooms, some with canal views.

Countless piazzas, restaurants, galleries, and bars are just steps away in any direction!

3. Cinque Terre, Italy

Vernazza Cinque Terre Towns

Cinque Terre , Italy is the perfect city for a weekend trip in Europe.

It offers stunning views of the Mediterranean coastline, crystal clear waters, and vibrant villages that are sure to engage and delight any traveler.

For anyone looking for an exciting and unique cultural experience, Cinque Terre can provide.

With its picturesque beauty and vibrant cuisine, it’s no surprise that this destination is one of the most popular stops on European city trips.

Spend your weekend exploring these five pastel colored villages and you’ll be sure to make memories that will last a lifetime!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Cinque Terre:

  • Monterosso Kayak and Snorkeling Tour : Explore the stunning Monterosso coast, kayaking with a local guide. Enjoy scenic views, snorkel in a protected bay, and embrace the wildlife.
  • Tour Cinque Terre From La Spezia by Train with Limoncino : Explore Cinque Terre villages on a day trip from La Spezia cruise terminal. Hop on a train to visit Vernazza, Monterosso, and Riomaggiore with a guide.

How to get to Cinque Terre

The closest airport to Cinque Terre is Pisa. Trains offer the easiest transportation option within and to Cinque Terre. Trenitalia also provides direct connections to La Spezia from Rome and Florence.

Once in Cinque Terre, the Cinque Terre Express train runs between La Spezia and Levanto, stopping at each village in Sestri Levante.

Where to stay in Cinque Terre

Nestled amidst vineyards and olive trees, high above Levanto, the gateway to Cinque Terre, is Al Terra di Mare .

Hotel Al Terra Di Mare Cinque Terre

Certain rooms boast panoramic valley or sea views, alongside a private balcony or terrace.

Hotel Al Terra Di Mare is located 2.3 km from Levanto center and 2 km from the train station.

4. Rome, Italy

Trevi Fountain Rome - Rome Weekend Itinerary

Rome is a city that offers something for everyone.

From the art and architecture to the food and culture, it’s easy to see why it’s one of the best cities in Europe for weekend trips.

Whether you’re looking for an artsy getaway or an adventure-filled trip, Rome has it all.

With its stunning monuments, delicious cuisine, vibrant nightlife, and rich history.

So if you’re looking to escape the hustle and bustle of daily life for a few days – Rome is the perfect destination.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Rome:

  • Colosseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill : Get priority access to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill on a guided tour. Step into the world of gladiators and emperors as you journey back to ancient Rome.
  • Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel Tour & Basilica Skip-the-Line Entry : Explore the Vatican Museums’ art collection on a tour with an art historian guide. Optional entry to Castle Gandolfo and St Peter’s Basilica. Admire Michelangelo’s masterpieces in the Sistine Chapel.
  • And for if you want to get out of Rome for a day tour, check out our recommendations of the best Pompeii day trips from Rome .

How to get to Rome

To reach Rome, the most convenient options are by plane or train. Rome has two airports: Fiumicino (Leonardo da Vinci) and Ciampino.

The main international airport is FCO. Both airports are about 30-40 minutes from the city center.

From the airport, you can easily take a train or Metro into the city center.

Where to stay in Rome

Hotel Cristoforo Colombo is set in Rome’s EUR district and close to Rome’s GRA Ring Road, offering complete convenience for all your shopping needs.

Hotel Cristoforo Colombo Rome

If you are visiting in the summer months, the outdoor pool is also wonderful for the kids!

5. Lake Como, Italy

Varenna in Lake Como

Lake Como is a beautiful destination that offers one of the best Europe weekend breaks.

The picturesque setting features postcard-perfect views and a unique atmosphere unlike anywhere else in Europe.

Whether you’re looking for a peaceful escape or an exciting adventure, there’s something to suit every taste.

With plenty of activities and attractions, from relaxing boat trips to thrilling cable car rides, Lake Como is the perfect option for your next Europe weekend break.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Lake Como:

  • Lugano & Bellagio Day Trip & Scenic Lake Cruise : Go from Como to Lugano, Cadenabbia, and Bellagio on a day trip. Explore two glamorous countries, two charming lakes, and two ravishing shopping districts.
  • Guided City Walking Tour with Cruise Ticket : Explore picturesque piazzas, the local cathedral, and iconic lakeside villas on a guided tour of Como by land and lake.

How to get to Lake Como

To reach Lake Como, take a train from Milan Centrale Station or Milan Nord Cadorna to either Como San Giovanni (Como’s main station) or Como Nord Lago. The closest airport is in Milan.

Where to stay in Lake Como

Located on the northwestern shore in the small town of San Vito, Casa Olea Hotel offers humble lodging.

Casa Olea Hotel Lake Como

Windows offer picturesque views of the surrounding landscape, blending curated shapes and sizes. Relax in a bath while admiring a private garden or gaze at the dimly lit Chiesa San Vito under the moonlight.

6. Zakopane, Poland

Krupowki street in Zakopane Poland

Zakpoane is an incredible city to visit on a weekend getaway, particularly for those looking to explore Europe.

From the stunning architecture of the old town, to the vibrant culture and lively nightlife, Zakpoane offers something truly special that you won’t find in many other cities.

It has hundreds of restaurants to choose from so you’re always spoilt for choice.

Whether you want to join a pub crawl or explore the city’s galleries and monuments, this European city is sure to fill any traveler’s itinerary with a wealth of activities and sights in Zakopane .

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Zakopane:

  • Relax, Explore and Conquer Zakopane’s Peaks : Experience Zakopane’s allure in a day of relaxation & adventure! Enjoy thermal baths, explore the charming city, and conquer the heights of Tatras.

How to get to Zakopane

Zakopane is located about a 2 to 2.5-hour drive South of Krakow and there are a number of ways to get there, including taking public transport such as a bus or a train ride.

Alternatively, you can choose to drive there directly or take a day tour.

Where to stay in Zakopane

Radisson Blu Hotel & Residences is a short walk from Krupówki, the city’s main street.

The onsite spa offers modern spa facilities, including steam and Turkish saunas.

Radisson Blu Hotel & Residences Zakopane

Guests can enjoy skiing and cycling activities in and around Zakopane.

7. Hallstatt, Austria

Hallstatt Austria with Kids

Hallstatt is a small Austrian village located in the Salzkammergut region near the mountains.

It is known to be one of the most beautiful and charming places on Earth, with its traditional alpine houses, crystal clear lake, and breathtaking views of the snow-covered mountains.

Hallstatt is also considered as a great place for weekend trips because it offers plenty of activities such as exploring salt mines and the ancient churches.

Take a boat ride across Lake Hallstatt and visit the nearby Dachstein Ice Cave – all of which guarantee an unforgettable experience.

So if you’re looking for one of the best European weekend trips, add Hallstatt to your list!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Hallstatt:

  • Self-Guided Private Tour of Hallstatt : Explore Hallstatt, Austria’s most scenic town, on a self-guided tour. Discover the top photo spots and iconic landmarks.
  • City Highlights Guided Walking Tour inlcuding the Salt Mine (Group of 4) : Explore Hallstatt on a pleasant guided walking tour. Visit a salt mine, admire a 12th-century Catholic church, pass by the Bone House, and learn about the history of Hallstatt. Picture-perfect experience guaranteed!

How to get to Hallstatt

You can reach Hallstatt by either road or rail. If you prefer driving or taking the bus, the major starting points are Vienna, Salzburg (Hallstatt is a really easy day trip from Salzburg), and Munich.

There is a train station at Hallstatt, but the train journey is a lot longer than the journey by car or bus.

Where to stay in Hallstatt

Seehotel Grüner Baum Hallstatt

Seehotel Grüner Baum is located right next to the lake and has been running for a while now.

Many of the rooms are located right next to the lake and it is recommended to book in advance. There’s a free shuttle to the town too!

8. Zakynthos, Greece

Zakynthos Best Europe Weekend Getaway, Navagio Beach, Shipwreck Beach lookout, Greece

Zakynthos (or Zante) is one of the most beautiful and stunning islands in Europe.

With its pure white beaches, unspoiled nature, and crystal clear blue waters, it’s no wonder that Zakynthos is one of the best weekend breaks in Europe for a relaxing getaway.

From boat trips to the famous Blue Caves to discovering local taverns, there are plenty of activities to enjoy on this idyllic Greek island.

And if you’re looking for something more laid-back, Zakynthos also offers some of the best sunsets in Europe – perfect for taking a moment to appreciate life’s simple pleasures.

So if you’re looking for the perfect weekend break in Europe that combines relaxation and adventure, head to Zakynthos!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Zakynthos:

  • Glass Bottom Speed Boat Shipwreck Beach and Blue Caves & Viewpoint: Take a guided minibus tour to Zakynthos’ northern landmarks, including the Navagio Viewpoint. Explore the famous Shipwreck Beach and Blue Caves on a glass-bottom speedboat.
  • Navagio Shipwreck Beach Excursion by Boat : The trip stops at Shipwreck Beach for photos, explores the best blue caves (Sfogio and White Beach), and visits Porto Steniti, and Poseidon’s profile. Also, enjoy 3 swimming stops!

How to get to Zakynthos

Zakynthos is known for its convenient airport. You can fly from Athens, about a 1-hour journey, or take a ferry from Kyllini in mainland Greece, which takes around 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Where to stay in Zakynthos

Ionian Hill Hotel is a short 5-minute walk from the beach, Ionian Hill is located on the outskirts of Argassi in Zakynthos.

Ionian Hill Hotel Zakynthos

With accommodations offering balcony views of the garden or Ionian Sea, the property includes a pool and snack bar.

9. Santorini, Greece

Santorini Greece - Mother and daughter posing at the view point of the OIA old town

Santorini is a stunningly beautiful island in the Mediterranean Sea, the perfect destination for a romantic weekend break with your significant other, no matter what time of year you visit Santorini .

With its white-washed villages, picture-perfect sunsets, and cobalt blue waters, it’s easy to see why this iconic Greek island is continually rated as one of the best weekend breaks in Europe.

Santorini offers time to relax on secluded beaches or exciting adventures exploring winding streets and vibrant markets.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Santorini:

  • Volcanic Islands Cruise with Hot Springs Visit : Enjoy a cruise to Santorini’s volcanic islands. Take a dip in hot springs, marvel at volcano views, and explore Thirassia and Oia’s charming villages.
  • Akrotiri Archaeological Site Entry Ticket : Explore the ancient city, buried in volcanic ash. Visit the remarkably preserved site often called the “Pompeii of the Aegean”.
  • Luxury Small Group Catamaran with Meal & Open Bar : Join a small group for a morning or sunset catamaran sail around the Santorini caldera! Enjoy an open bar, snorkeling, swimming in hot springs, and a delicious Greek meal.

For more inspiration, we have a complete list of places in Greece to visit .

How to get to Santorini

Santorini has an international airport and can be reached by plane from Athens and various European cities. The island is also connected to Athens by ferry.

To reach Santorini from other islands like Mykonos and Paros, the ferry is the sole direct connection option available.

Where to stay in Santorini

Whether you are looking for the best hotels in Santorini with pools , or just want an amazing hotel on the beach there is a hotel for all travelers!

Kalestesia Suites Santorini

Kalestesia Suites is perched atop Akrotiri Hill, just 350 meters from Akrotiri village and 800 meters from the main square.

Offering stunning views of the volcano, Caldera, and Santorini, some rooms even boast their own heated plunge pools!

10. Taormina, Italy

TAORMINA Weekend European Trips

Taormina is one of the best European weekend trips for people looking to explore the beauty of the Italian coast

With its stunning views of Mount Etna, charming cobblestone streets, and elegant restaurants, it’s easy to see why so many travelers choose to spend their weekends in this picturesque town.

With a variety of activities to do in Taormina , from exploring ancient ruins to taking part in outdoor sports, there’s something for everyone who visits Taormina.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Taormina:

  • Food and Wine Walking Tour : Join a local guide for an evening walking tour of Taormina. Discover the best places to eat and drink while sampling typical Sicilian foods and fine regional wines.
  • Mount Etna Guided Volcano Summit Hiking Tour with Cable Car : Hike Mount Etna’s summit craters, guided by professionals. Ride a cable car to the starting point and trek for 3.5 hours amidst breathtaking scenery.
  • Ancient Theater Entry Ticket and Guided Tour : Visit the Ancient Theater of Taormina, one of Italy’s largest show venues. Unearth the wonders of this renowned archaeological site.

How to get to Taormina

Getting to Taormina is easy as there are frequent direct flights from major cities across Europe, making it a great choice for a quick getaway!

Where to stay in Taormina

Hotel Corallo , situated in Taormina Mare, offers enchanting views of the Bay of Naxos and Cape Taormina from the guestrooms and the restaurant.

Hotel Corallo Taormina

Steps away from the hotel, you can relax on the beautiful beach of Baia di Villagonia when not exploring the area.

11. Corfu, Greece

Exploring Corfu Old Town, Greece, Father and Daughter walking up the cobble stone path, shops

Corfu is one of the best weekend getaways in Europe for many reasons.

The beautiful beaches, stunning views, and plentiful activities to do in Corfu make it an ideal getaway spot.

The island has a unique blend of cultures, which can be appreciated through its fascinating architecture, rich cuisine, and local customs.

Spend your days exploring the old town or just sitting back and sipping on a glass of ouzo!

With its vibrant nightlife, delicious dishes, and amazing outdoor activities, Corfu is truly one of the best weekend getaways in Europe.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Corfu:

  • Antipaxos & Paxos Blue Caves Boat Cruise : Embark on a day cruise from Corfu to the beautiful islands of Paxos and Antipaxos in the Ionian Sea. Witness the stunning views of the famous blue caves.
  • Live Jazz Music at the Old Fortress : Uncover a hidden side of Corfu with music at a secret location. Experience the talents of local musicians near the old fortress in the harbor.

How to get to Corfu

To reach Corfu from mainland Greece, you can take a ferry or a plane.

There are flights to Corfu from various European countries, as well as seasonal ferry connections with 3 ports in Italy and a year-round ferry connection with 1 port in Albania.

Where to stay in Corfu

Dreams Corfu Resort & Spa is in the charming town of Gouvia, right on the Corfu Island seafront.

Dreams Corfu Resort & Spa

It’s perfect for families and couples seeking an all-inclusive Mediterranean getaway. Rooms range from double and family rooms to suites and bungalows.

This resort has a dedicated beach and offers a variety of water sports, there are 2 pools, including a family-friendly pool.

12. Nice, France

Cours Saleya Market in Nice

Nice is a small city on the French Riviera that punches well above its weight when it comes to quick getaways in Europe.

Located just 40 minutes away from Monaco, Nice is an ideal destination for those who want to experience all of the glamour and grandeur of the Riviera without spending too much time getting there.

Its beaches are perfect for sun-soaking, while its historic city center is full of idyllic cafes, restaurants, and shopping streets lined with art galleries and boutiques.

With a host of cultural activities in Nice including incredible music festivals and modern art installations, Nice offers something for everyone looking for quick getaways in Europe.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Nice:

  • Culture, Wine & Food Old Town Guided Walking Tour : Join a walking tour of Nice Old Town to taste local produce like olive oils, regional wines, cheeses, bread, cold-cuts, fruits, and pastries in Castle Hill Park.
  • Old Town Treasures Walking Tour : Explore Nice’s history on a guided walking tour in the medieval old town, Vieux-Nice. Discover the city’s story from Greek origins to Italian governors.

How to get to Nice

With an international airport just 8km from Nice’s center, flying is the fastest and easiest option.

A regular 20-minute bus service connects the airport and the city, ensuring quick arrival at your destination.

Where to stay in Nice

Aparthotel AMMI Nice Massena is located just 200 meters from Place Masséna and a quick 3-minute walk from the beach and the famous Promenade des Anglais.

Aparthotel AMMI Nice Massena - ex Ajoupa in Nice

The hotel is only a 15-minute walk from Nice Ville Train Station.

The nearest tramway stop is just 100 meters away, and the old town is within a 5-minute walk from Ajoupa.

13. Florence, Italy

best cities in Europe Florence with Kids

Florence, Italy is a must-see for a weekend trip in Europe. With its breathtaking architecture, rich history, and Mediterranean climate, it’s easy to see why Florence is one of the best weekend trips in Europe.

Another great reason why Florence is great for a weekend trip is its small size, which means you can easily experience a lot within just two days!

Our kids loved that we could see a lot all within close proximity which means they did not have to walk too much when exploring.

From admiring the beauty of the iconic Duomo to exploring the Piazzas to dining on delicious Italian food or the best Gelato, Florence is the perfect destination whether traveling as a couple or as a family to Florence .

If you are a food lover, learn how to make your own gelato (and pasta, pizza) in a Florence cooking class .

So if you want to have an amazing European getaway make sure to add Florence to your list!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Florence:

  • Skip the Line Entry to Brunelleschi’s Dome and Cathedral : Explore Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore and marvel at Brunelleschi’s Dome. Enjoy panoramic views of Florence from the iconic Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore.
  • Michelangelo’s David Skip-the-Line Entry Ticket : Skip the line and experience Michelangelo’s David at the Accademia Gallery Museum in Florence which houses more sculptures by Michelangelo than any other place in the world. Explore this gem with access to all parts of the museum and an optional audio guide.

How to get to Florence

Getting to Florence is quite convenient and the popular choices are by plane, train, or car.

Florence has its own international airport (Amerigo Vespucci) and Pisa International Airport is just 50 km away.

Alternatively, Florence is a major high-speed railway hub with regular train connections throughout Italy. It is also located on the A1, the main Italian motorway connecting Milan and Naples.

Where to stay in Florence

The 4-star iQ Hotel Firenze features modern and spacious rooms with an onsite Pizzeria and Cocktail Bar serving Italian gourmet pizzas , appetizers, and cocktails.

iQ Hotel Firenze Florence Best Europe Trips for a Weekend

It is conveniently located within a 10-minute walk from Florence Cathedral, Santa Maria Novella Station, and nearby attractions such as Accademia Gallery and the Uffizi Gallery.

The hotel also offers a fully equipped fitness area, an indoor boutique Spa, and an outdoor plunge pool.

Check out our local’s guide to areas to stay in Florence for the inside scoop!

14. Amsterdam, Netherlands

Contributed by The Spicy Journey

Amsterdam The Spicy Journey

What attracts people towards Amsterdam, one of the most popular destinations in Europe, are the romantic canals, museums, parks, Dutch cuisine, Heineken beer, and the tulips!

There are also many exciting day trip opportunities to Zaanse Schans, Giethoorn, the Hague, Rotterdam, and other beautiful destinations in the Netherlands and Belgium.

What’s even more exciting is that it is completely feasible to cover all the major attractions within a  weekend trip to Amsterdam  and even see the countryside with the help of the Amsterdam and region travel card.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Amsterdam:

  • Life of Anne Frank and World War II Walking Tour : Explore Anne Frank’s life on a walking tour of Amsterdam. Learn about her upbringing and the history of the Jewish Quarter and World War II from an expert guide.
  • V an Gogh Museum Timed Entry Ticket : Experience the Van Gogh Museum! Explore hundreds of paintings, drawings, and letters by the Dutch master. Get tickets for your preferred time slot.
  • Classic Boat Cruise with Cheese & Wine Option : Enjoy a canal cruise through the UNESCO Heritage listed Golden Age Canals of Amsterdam. See city highlights like the Skinny Bridge, Red Light District, and Old Harbor. Choose between a standard or deluxe tour with unlimited Dutch cheese, wine, and drinks.

How to get to Amsterdam

Amsterdam has one of the busiest international airports in Europe so travellers can fly into Amsterdam directly.

The Amsterdam airport is located 10 miles from the city center and you can take a local train or bus to reach the city center from the airport.

The city also has excellent train connectivity to the rest of Europe and the United Kingdom. 

Where to stay in Amsterdam

Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre  is located at the edge of the river IJ, one tram stop from the Amsterdam central station.

Movenpick Amsterdam City Centre Hotel Best European Weekend Getaways

The hotel is also within walking distance of most of the sights in Amsterdam, making it the perfect base to explore the city.

The hotel’s fitness center, spa, restaurant, and amazing breakfast are an added bonus.

15. London, United Kingdom

Contributed by Linda on the Run

trip ideas to europe

“Planning the best weekend trip in Europe? If so then head to London.

Not only can you quickly and easily access top attractions using the Tube but you will never run out of things to do during your London itinerary . 

So, start with a visit to Trafalgar Square and the National Gallery. Next, see where the Royals were crowned at Westminster Abbey. Also, take a photo in front of Big Ben and then walk along the Thames to the Tower of London. 

Once here, see the Crown Jewels and where Anne Boleyn lost her head before walking across Tower Bridge to Borough Market. This landmark has been around since the 12th century and is an amazing place to enjoy a London food tour . 

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in London:

  • Tower of London and Crown Jewels Exhibition Ticket : Discover 1000 years of history at the Tower of London. See the Crown Jewels and gather captivating insights from the Yeoman Warders, the guardians of the Tower.
  • Skip-the-Line Entry to The London Eye : Experience the thrill as you rise above the iconic Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. Soar up to 135 meters on the world’s tallest cantilevered observation wheel, enjoying mesmerizing 360-degree views of the city including Buckingham Palace, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and the Tower of London.

How to get to London

To get to London you can fly into Luton, Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, etc. Our top tip is to try to fly into Heathrow and take the Piccadilly line into central London.

Where to stay in London

The Tower Hotel London is an incredible place to stay with sweeping views of Tower Bridge right from your room.

The Tower Hotel London

Refined accommodations include in-room coffee makers as well as complimentary breakfast and all-day refreshments.

>>> Check out our post for London Hotels with rooftop pools and views!

16. Munich, Germany

Contributed by Big World Short Stories

What to do in Munich

Munich is the capital of the largest German state Bavaria. It is a perfect destination for a weekend trip due to its size and cultural and historic heritage.

Some of the main attractions that you can explore within  2 days in Munich  are the  Neuschwanstein Castle  and the BMW Museum.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Munich:

  • 3-Hour Guided Bike Tour of Munich : Discover vibrant Munich on a 3-hour guided bike tour whilst learning intriguing stories about the city’s history from your guide.
  • An Evening of Bavarian Beer and Food Culture: Explore Munich’s food culture and indulge in traditional food and beer. Join a guided tour, visit the Oktoberfest Museum, and savor a delightful Bavarian dinner.

How to get to Munich

Munich Franz Josef Strauss Airport (MUC) is the closest international airport to Munich. The easiest way to get from the airport to the city center of Munich is by train.

There are 2 train lines S8 and S1 connecting Munich airport and the city center. The trains leave every 10 minutes and take about 40 minutes to bring you to the city center. 

Where to stay in Munich

The best area to stay in Munich is called the Altstadt (the old town). The most famous and luxurious hotel in Munich Altstadt is the  Hotel Bayrischer Hof .

Hotel Bayerischer Hof Munich

This iconic hotel has hosted many celebrities including Michael Jackson.

The rooftop terrace of the hotel overlooking the entire city is a great place to go dining or just enjoy a drink with a great view. 

17. Prague, Czech Republic

Contributed by Nats Travel

Prague River

Being based in the heart of Europe, Prague is a great weekend destination. Easy and fast to reach from any European country.

You can visit Prague at any time of the year, and you will always find things to do there.

Prague is perfect for 2 days sightseeing important landmarks of the historic city. Walk on Wenceslas Square, and continue to the Old Town Square to see the Astronomical clock and Church of our Lady Before Tyn.

Head towards the Charles Bridge, the most important landmark in Prague from where you will have a stunning view. End your walk in Prague Castle.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Prague:

  • Prague Foodie Tour : Do you love trying the traditional food of a country you visit? Then take this foodie tour to try the best of Czech cuisine.
  • Skip-the-Line Prague Castle Tour with Local Guide : Explore the breathtaking beauty of Prague Castle on a 2.5-hour guided tour, available in both group and private options. Enjoy fast-track access, bypassing long ticket and security lines.
  • Vltava River Night Cruise with Buffet : Experience the food and charm of Prague on a 3-hour dinner cruise. Admire illuminated historic monuments, including Prague Castle and the Dancing House on the Rašínovo embankment.

How to get to Prague

Traveling to Prague is straightforward. If you are coming by plane, you will fly to Vaclav Havel Airport. From the airport, you will take a bus and then a metro to get to the city center. It takes about 30-40 minutes to reach.

If you are coming by train, you will come to the main railway station (Hlavni Nadrazi) which is located inside the city. From there you can take a metro, tram, or walk depending on where is your hotel located.

Where to stay in Prague

When choosing a hotel, the best choice is the city center close to all the sights. You will love  THE MANES Boutique Hotel Prague . 

The Manes Boutique Hotel Prague

This modern hotel is close to the Vltava River where you can also find a kids’ playground on the island located on the river. Historical sights and public transportation are nearby.

18. Zurich, Switzerland

Contributed by Arzo Travels

Zurich old town Arzo Travels

Switzerland´s main city is easy to reach and located in the heart of Europe. However, this is not the only reason to spend a weekend in Zurich.

There are tons of things to do and see in  Zurich . Starting from a walk around Lake Zurich, strolling one of the most expensive shopping streets in the world – Bahnhofstrasse to exploring the old town.

Visit one of the many museums (including the very cool Lindt chocolate museum), or go on a day trip to see the impressive Alps in the nearby Lucerne or Bern regions.

And Zurich has the best nightlife in the country, while the after-drinks start after 5 pm, the nights are long with many bars and clubs to choose from.

But do not assume Zurich is only for adults who like to enjoy long nights – it is also a wonderful family-friendly city that offers plenty of outdoor and indoor activities for people of all ages.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Zurich:

  • City Tour, Cruise, and Lindt Home of Chocolate Visit : Explore Zürich on a combined city tour and cruise to see why it’s called the “city with the world’s best quality of life.” Marvel at impressive churches, guild houses, and more.
  • City Highlights Tour by Coach, Cable Car, and Ferry : Explore Zurich and its surroundings on a city tour. See the churches in the Old Town and ride the aerial cable car for a stunning view of Lake Zurich and the Alps.

How to get to Zurich

The train station is well connected to other cities in Europe and once at the train station you are actually already in the heart of the city and can start exploring. 

If you get to Zurich International Airport, then take a train (there are a number of trains departing to Zurich Train Station – Zurich Bahnhof) which will get you to the city center in just 12 minutes.

You could also rent a car at Zurich airport, but thanks to the fantastic public transportation in Zurich, there is actually no need to.

Where to stay in Zurich

Staying in the city center is definitely the best area to choose from as most attractions are located within walking distance.

One of the best hotels in the city is right on the shores of Lake Zurich in the center is the luxurious 5-star hotel Baur au Lac .

Baur au Lac Hotel Zurich

This is the perfect location to rest after some busy hours of exploring Zurich.

19. Malaga, Spain

Contributed by Ipanema Travels

Malaga Spain ipanematravels

Whether you are looking for the winter sun or want to combine beach and culture, Málaga is the perfect destination for a weekend trip in Europe.

Located in Andalusia, this Spanish city offers world-class heritage sites, art museums, cozy restaurants, and lots of Southern charm.

When in Málaga visit the Roman Theatre and the Alcazaba Fortress, together with the Gibralfaro Castle. For the best views of the city, take a tour of the cathedral roof. 

Famous for being the birthplace of the modernist artist Pablo Picasso, Málaga won’t disappoint those who love art either.

You can visit Museo Picasso Málaga and the birth house of Picasso, as well as the Pompidou Centre, and the Carmen Thyssen Museum.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Málaga:

  • Cathedral, Alcazaba, Roman Theater Walking Tour : Explore Málaga’s highlights on a walking tour: Cathedral, Alcazaba, Roman Theater, and Picasso’s streets. Learn fascinating details from your guide about each site!

How to get to Málaga

Getting to Málaga is pretty easy, as the city has its own international airport.

This is also one of the  reasons why Málaga is a popular travel destination  in Europe.

From the airport, you can take either the express bus line or a taxi to get to the city center. The transfer time is about 15 minutes.

Where to stay in Málaga

Hotel Boutique Teatro Romano is located in the heart of the city and this hotel won’t break the bank.

Hotel Boutique Teatro Romano Malaga

With comfortable, yet tastefully furnished rooms and beautiful views of the Roman Theatres, this hotel is perfect for a short stay in Málaga.

20. Brussels, Belgium

Contributed by World Wild Schooling

Brussels Mont des Arts Wolrd Wild Schooling

Brussels, the heart of Europe, is a perfect destination for a weekend getaway with its blend of history, culture, and cuisine.

One of the  best things to do in Brussels  is to stroll around the Grand Place, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

You can also try a  tour of the city’s art and history and taste Belgian chocolate and waffles . Don’t miss the Atomium, an iconic symbol of Brussels. 

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Brussels:

  • Belgian Chocolate Making Workshop with Tastings: Experience Belgian chocolate and learn to make delicious treats at a workshop in Brussels with a chocolatier artisan. Indulge your sweet tooth with tastings and discover the uniqueness of Belgium’s cacao.
  • Brussels Atomium and Design Museum Entry Ticket : Visit the iconic Atomium, a unique architectural creation and a symbol of Brussels and Belgium. Originally built for the 1958 World’s Fair, it remains the most popular attraction in Europe’s capital city.

How to get to Brussels

It’s easy to reach the two airports in Brussels. Brussels Airport (BRU) is the closest at around 20 minutes by train or car.

Most budget airlines fly to Brussels South Charleroi Airport (CRL), which is about an hour by bus or car.

Major train stations, Brussels Central and Midi, offer high-speed trains that connect Brussels with major European cities.

Where to stay in Brussels

You can stay at  Hotel Amigo , a 5-star hotel right next to the Grand Place.

Its charming interiors and superior service make it a great choice for a weekend in Brussels.

Rocco Forte Hotel Amigo Brussels

Enjoy its proximity to major attractions and restaurants.

21. Barcelona, Spain

Contributed by Waves and Cobblestones

Barcelona Spain

Barcelona is the perfect destination for a weekend getaway in Europe!  It’s got it all:  beautiful beaches, delicious cuisine, stunning architecture, and top-notch museums.

Some of the  top attractions in Barcelona  are the amazing buildings designed by renowned architect Antoni Gaudí. 

Enjoy a rooftop concert at Casa Milà or explore the colorful mosaics of Parc Güell.

You don’t want to miss La Sagrada Familia!  This magnificent basilica has become an iconic symbol of Barcelona. 

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Barcelona:

  • Sagrada Familia Skip-The-Line Guided Tour : Take a skip-the-line guided tour to see the breathtaking interior of the basilica. Be sure to get your tickets in advance, as this is extremely popular!
  • Casa Batlló Entry with Self-Audioguide Tour : Enjoy the Casa Batlló experience, where artificial intelligence, augmented reality, and machine learning intertwine. Immerse yourself in the masterpiece of Antoni Gaudí, an architectural and design legend.
  • Montserrat Tour, Monastery & Optional Wine/Lunch : Hop on a cogwheel train, explore a historic monastery in Montserrat, and soak in amazing views. Pick a half-day tour or upgrade to a full-day trip.

How to get to Barcelona

Fly to Barcelona via the Barcelona-El Prat Airport.  This international airport is only about 13 kilometers from the center of Barcelona, and it’s easy to take public transportation if you don’t want to rent a car.

Where to stay in Barcelona

Stay at the Hotel Jazz .  This hotel has a great location in the heart of historic Barcelona. 

Hotel Jazz Barcelona

You’ll love the rooftop terrace, where you can take a refreshing dip in the pool or enjoy a cocktail after a day of sightseeing.

22. Dubrovnik, Croatia

Contributed by Not About The Miles

Dubrovnik View Not About The Miles

If you are looking for an exciting weekend getaway in Europe, consider  2 days in Dubrovnik ! Known as the Pearl of the Adriatic, the Croatian city is compact but captivating.

If you enjoy history and architecture, pop into the beautiful Franciscan Monastery and the Dubrovnik Cathedral; or walk the famous city walls.

Take a boat trip to the little island of Lokrum, or go sea kayaking. Spend some time at the beach. Take the cable car to the top of Mount Srd for panoramas.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Dubrovnik:

  • Game of Thrones Tour : Take a Game of Thrones tour to not only see major filming locations but also to learn about the city’s real history. Tour Lovrijenac Fortress: It’s a climb but the views are well worth it!
  • Elafiti Islands (Elaphites) Tour : The Elafiti Islands are perfect for a day trip from Dubrovnik. Popular speedboat tours of the three main islands include stops for swimming and snorkeling and free time to visit each island.

How to get to Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik has an international airport and it is easy to fly in from many places in Europe, including hubs like London. 

From the airport, the old town is about a 30-minute drive, and you can take a taxi or the airport shuttle bus. 

Once in the old town, you can walk everywhere!

Where to stay in Dubrovnik

The Pucic Palace is a stunning boutique hotel located right in the old town, very convenient for sightseeing and walking to restaurants.

The Pucic Palace Dubrovnik

It’s a gorgeous place to base for your Dubrovnik weekend!

23. Lausanne, Switzerland

Contributed by Happy Little Traveler

Pretty Lausanne in Switzerland

Lausanne is a beautiful Swiss city located on the northern shores of Lake Geneva. Thanks to many attractions, wonderful views, and easy access it’s a great spot for a weekend trip in Europe that will steal your heart.

There are quite a lot of things to do in Lausanne , but if you want to get the best out of your weekend there, be sure to take a lazy walk along the Ouchy promenade and admire stunning views over the Alps.

Also, stroll around Lausanne’s charming old town and visit the famous Olympic Museum.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Lausanne:

  • Lake Geneva Cruise Along Lavaux Vineyards : A two-hour Lake Geneva cruise is a great choice as well! After all that, head to one of the restaurants and taste delicious Swiss food like rosti, raclette, or fondue.

How to get to Lausanne

The closest airport to Lausanne is located in Geneva, only 60km away. It offers train and bus connections to the city.

It’s also quite easy to arrive in Lausanne by train from many places in both Switzerland and France.

Where to stay in Lausanne

For a pleasant stay, you can choose Mövenpick Hotel , which is located just a few steps from the main city attractions.

Mövenpick Hotel Lausanne

But what’s most important is that this hotel offers rooms with unforgettable views over Lake Geneva and the Alps.

24. Lisbon, Portugal

Contributed by 24Hours Layover

Lisbon Portugal

Lisbon is a fantastic destination for a weekend trip due to its rich history, vibrant culture, and stunning landscapes.

It’s compact and easily walkable, which is great if you love exploring a city on foot. Plus it’s certainly possible to see the best bits in just one weekend!

Visit historic sites like Belem Tower and Jeronimos Monastery, and make sure to check out the Alfama neighborhood and the scenic Miradouros, all of which make for great  places to take photos in Lisbon .

Then in the evening check out a Fado performance or relax on a  sunset boat cruise !

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Lisbon:

  • History, Stories, and Lifestyle Walking Tour : Explore Lisbon’s history on a guided walking tour, visiting charming neighborhoods like Chiado and Bairro Alto. Enjoy panoramic views from Miradouro São Pedro de Alcântara and more.

How to get to Lisbon

Lisbon is very well-connected and easy to get to. Lisbon’s International Airport is 10 kilometers from downtown.

The airport has a metro station which will take you to downtown Lisbon in 20 minutes. If driving from Lisbon Airport to the city center, the journey takes around 20 to 30 minutes.

Lisbon is also well-connected to major cities in Portugal and neighboring countries through train services. The main train station is Santa Apolonia, located in the city center.

Where to stay in Lisbon

For an absolutely stunning hotel, stay at the  Be Poet Baixa Hotel .

Be Poet Baixa Hotel Lisbon

Situated right amongst the action, it’s the perfect place to stay for a weekend in Lisbon!

25. Madrid, Spain

Contributed by It’s All Trip To Me

madrid itsalltriptome

Planning a trip to Madrid  is always a good idea. With countless colorful neighborhoods to explore and laze around at quaint cafés and lively bars, Madrid is one of the most vibrant cities in Europe, the perfect place to spend a weekend away from home. 

When visiting Madrid for just a couple of days,  jump on the hop-on-hop-off bus for a chance to see more of the city in less time .

Moreover, if you’re traveling to Madrid during the weekend, you’re in great luck! El Rastro, the city’s most famous flea market, takes place on Sundays alone. 

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Madrid:

  • Prado Museum Entry Ticket : Explore art masterpieces and see works by Velázquez, Goya, El Greco, and more. The collection features 7,600 paintings and 1,000 sculptures, showcasing the full range of Spanish art.
  • Royal Palace Fast-Access Admission Ticket : Explore the Royal Palace of Madrid, the official residence of Spanish royalty, with an immersive experience in one of the world’s largest palaces. Wander through corridors steeped in centuries of Spanish history.

How to get to Madrid

Madrid’s international airport connects the city to several other destinations within Europe and elsewhere. The drive from Barajas Airport to the city center takes less than half an hour. 

Where to stay in Madrid

If you’re spending only a couple of days in Madrid, it makes sense to book a hotel in a central location. 

B&B Hotel Madrid Centro Plaza Mayor  is only steps from the iconic Plaza Mayor and within easy walking distance from the city’s other major attractions.

B&B HOTEL Madrid Centro Plaza Mayor

The impeccably clean rooms and the friendly staff render this hotel the perfect accommodation option for a weekend trip to Madrid. 

26. Budapest, Hungary

Contributed by Flying Fluskey

Budapest Flying Fluskey Weekend Trips In Europe

Budapest is an easy weekend trip  for the whole of Europe as it sits right at the center.

The city straddles the mighty Danube River and is packed with years of fascinating history to discover.

Budapest is full of natural hot springs that have been turned into divine public bathing pools. The baroque style Szechenyi Baths is the most popular and for good reason.

Spend an afternoon exploring the Buda Castle complex on top of the hill and another on a food tour enjoying Hungarian classics.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Budapest:

  • Buda Castle Cave Walking Tour : Discover the labyrinth caves beneath the Buda Castle District while learning about their history and unique geology.
  • 1-Hour Sightseeing Cruise with Welcome Drink : Explore Budapest’s iconic landmarks on a 1-hour River Danube sightseeing cruise. Sip on a seasonal cocktail or soft drink as you glide past Buda Castle and the Vigado Concert Hall.

How to get to Budapest

From Budapest Ferenc Liszt Airport, catch the cheap and efficient 100E Airport Express bus that takes around 45 minutes into the city.

Alternatively, there are shared transfers run by MiniBUD or pricy private transfers.

If arriving by train from across Europe, there are many mainline terminus stations that connect to the Metro, giving easy access to the whole city.

Where to stay in Budapest

When staying in Budapest, stay on the Pest side of the river. The Jewish District is full of great options, and for the best value, book an apartment.

Anantara New York Palace Budapest

However, for a truly luxurious experience, the Anantara New York Palace Budapest Hotel has a beautiful lobby, plus, you can have breakfast in the iconic New York Cafe as standard.

27. Istanbul, Turkey

Contributed by Mog and Dog Travels

Istanbul mosque at sunset

Stretching across two continents and offering fascinating historical attractions, a lively nightlife scene, and mouth-watering cuisine, Istanbul is ideal for a weekend getaway. 

A perfect weekend in Istanbul should always begin with an indulgent Turkish spread breakfast. Known as serpme kahvaltı, it can feature up to twenty different dishes!

 You can walk off your breakfast by exploring some of Istanbul’s beautiful architecture.

Don’t miss the spectacular ancient mosaics in the Hagia Sophia mosque, the handpainted tiled interior of the Blue Mosque, or the underground Basilica Cistern.

If you like shopping, head over to haggle with local merchants at the Grand Bazaar, the largest covered market in the world.  

Istanbul has a breathtaking skyline, so make sure you book a spot at one of the many rooftop bars and restaurants that offer stunning panoramic views of the city. Alternatively, visit the extraordinary Galata Tower, which offers a 360° view of the whole city. 

Finally, treat yourself to a luxurious scrub and soap massage at a Turkish bath, a pampering experience that is like no other!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Istanbul:

  • If you’re keen to explore more of Istanbul’s gastronomic delights, consider going on  this amazing food tour  around the city.
  • Blue Mosque, Basilica Cistern & Hagia Sophia Tour : Discover 3 renowned landmarks in Istanbul on this guided combo tour. Admire the Blue Mosque, explore the mysterious Basilica Cistern, and visit the grand Hagia Sofia mosque.
  • Topkapi Palace Guided Tour and Skip The Line : Explore Topkapi Palace, Turkey’s prominent museum, and the Balkan Peninsula’s notable landmark.

How to get to Istanbul

Istanbul has two airports: the newly built Istanbul International Airport (IST) and Sabiha Gökçen (SAW) aırport.

Both are served by an airport metro service, regular shuttle buses that operate 24/7, and taxis.

Journeys by shuttle bus or metro from IST or SAW into Istanbul city center take around 1-1.5 hours. 

Where to stay in Istanbul

There are many  different areas to stay in Istanbul  but for a weekend trip, the lovely area of Galata is the best choice.

Surrounded by charming cafes, shops, art galleries and museums, it’s an ideal base. 

NOA - Ali Hoca 6 Istanbul

NOA Luxury Apartments  offers reasonably priced, spacious, chic apartments with fully equipped kitchens, a balcony or garden, free Wi-Fi, and a private gym. 

28. Dublin, Ireland

Contributed by Backpackers Thailand

Dublin Temple Bar Best European Cities Weekend

If you’re looking for a fun weekend full of cultural activities, tasty food, and exploring historic sites,  make sure you add Dublin to your to-do list.

When you’re in Dublin, don’t miss the chance to explore Trinity College with the Book of Kells and the EPIC (Irish Immigration Museum).

Take a stroll through the lively Temple Bar district with nice restaurants and bars.

Visit the historic Whitefriar Street Church. It houses the remains of St. Valentine! The famous St. Patrick’s Cathedral, named after the patron saint of Ireland, is another must-see landmark.

But the highlight of your trip has to be a visit to The Brazen Head, the oldest pub in Dublin. The live music and mouthwatering food will leave a lasting impression.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Dublin:

  • Guinness Storehouse Entrance Ticket : Explore the Guinness Storehouse with a self-guided tour and discover the world-famous Guinness Stout, and savor a complimentary pint.
  • EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum Entrance Ticket : Explore the impact of a small island on the world. Uncover the stories of Irish emigrants and immerse yourself in Irish culture.

How to get to Dublin

You can easily fly to Dublin from all the major European cities, the US, Canada, and the Middle East. The airport is located 30 min away from the city center (you can take a taxi or a city bus).

Where to stay in Dublin

Stay in the charming Trinity Townhouse Hotel and indulge in spacious rooms and the captivating interior of the Georgian period.

Trinity Townhouse Hotel Dublin

All the top attractions are located just a short walk away. 

29. Porto, Portugal

Contributed by Random Trip

porto views from gaia randomtrip

There is a city in the north of Portugal with plans for all types of travelers and budgets: Welcome to  Porto !

You may also know it as Oporto but the Portuguese name is actually Porto.

Porto is a perfect weekend destination, as in 2-3 days you can admire its many religious buildings like its cathedral (Se do Porto) or its beautiful tile-covered churches (Capela das Almas or Santo Ildefonso).

You can also admire the amazing views of the city from its marvelous viewpoints from Torre dos Clérigos or from Dom Luis I bridge.

Buy some artsy souvenirs from the small galleries at Rua Miguel Bombarda (for example at Ó! Galeria) and jump on a  river cruise on a “Ravelo” , the original boats used to transport Port wine barrels. 

Don’t forget the amazing gastronomy! The iconic dish in Porto is Francesinha, a sandwich filled with various meats, smothered in cheese and a flavorful spicy sauce made with tomato and beer. It’s typically topped with a fried egg and served with crispy french fries on the side.

There are also vegan and vegetarian versions. You will find Francesinhas in most restaurants, and if you ask local people about it, everyone will tell you which restaurant cooks their favorite one.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Porto:

  •   Torre dos Clerigos Entrance Ticket : Experience panoramic views of Porto from the top of the baroque Torre dos Clérigos. Climb the city’s iconic Bell Tower at your own pace, conquering its 225 steps. Marvel at the church’s intricate façade adorned with seashells and garlands.
  • Cockburn’s Cellar Tour Classic or Pairing Option : Experience a guided visit and premium tasting at Cockburn’s Lodge, the largest Port cellar in Vila Nova de Gaia’s historic quarter. Witness the only open cooperage in the area.

How to get to Porto

Getting to Porto is easy, as it has an international airport with low-cost flights connecting it with several cities in Europe.

The airport is 15km away from the city, and easily connected with buses, subway, and taxis or an Uber.

If you are already in Portugal, there are trains and buses connecting Porto to most places in Portugal and/or Lisbon.

Where to stay in Porto

Oporto Home – River Front : This modern and beautiful apartment is located right in the Ribera, one of the most visited areas in Porto.

Oporto Home - River Front in Porto

It has amazing river views and also Gaia views (the other side of the Douro River, where Port wine wineries are located).

You will be located within walking distance of the most interesting places and also near lots of restaurants.

Or why not check out the best hotels in Porto with a pool if you love having a pool for a dip at the end of the day!

30. Tenerife, Spain

Contributed by Alexander of Tenerife Is

tenerife from Tenerife Is

Tenerife  is a superb destination for a short trip. Firstly, the flight from London takes only 4 and a half hours. If you are already in Madrid the flight is only 3 hours.

And with so many low-cost carriers flying to Tenerife you can often get very cheap plane tickets.

Tenerife has great weather absolutely all year round, so any month and any date will be a great choice for a trip.

But that is not all that is great about visiting Tenerife. There is such a huge variety of activities in Tenerife that any traveler, families with children, couples, and elderly people will be happy with their journey.  

You can laze on the beach, go on excursions to colorful villages and towns, have fun in the largest water park in Europe Siam Park, or look at the stars at the foot of the volcano Teide.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Tenerife:

  • Siam Waterpark Entry Tickets : Kids will love it! Discover the Kingdom of Siam and dive into aquatic thrills with a full-day ticket to Siam Park Tenerife. Experience the force of the world’s largest artificial wave, float along a lazy river, and more.
  • Dolphin and Whale Eco-Cruise : Experience a memorable dolphin and whale-watching trip on an eco-friendly catamaran. Choose from 3-hour or 5-hour adventures, with food, drinks, and swimming available on both.
  • Teide National Park Sunset & Stargazing Tour : Enjoy breathtaking scenery in Tenerife and experience mesmerizing sunsets while stargazing in Teide National Park. Use telescopes at an altitude of 6561 ft (2000 meters) to observe the moon and stars.

How to get to Tenerife

There are two airports in Tenerife – the south airport and the north airport. If you plan to vacation in the south, where the sunny weather is the most stable, you should fly to the southern airport. It takes only 15-20 minutes by cab from the airport to the southern resorts.

Where to stay in Tenerife

Before I moved to Tenerife, I flew to vacation there with my family. I love the family friendly hotels in Tenerife. My all time favorite hotel is Bahia Principe Fantasia .

Bahia Principe Fantasia Tenerife

This Tenerife resort, inspired by fairy tales, captivates both children and adults. With an incredible water park, swimming pool, and exhilarating slides, it’s perfect for families.

Plus, there’s a fantastic kids club offering fun activities like cooking classes, and exciting excursions.

It’s a great opportunity for children to have fun and learn while staying here.

31. Kotor, Montenegro

Contributed by My Wanderlust

kotor My Wanderlust

Kotor, Montenegro is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Europe that can be a great weekend getaway to escape to a real wonderland.

The charming town with the maze of winding lanes dates back to the 3rd century BC, and still today, you can admire the numerous historical buildings (especially churches and palaces) in various architectural styles.

But the real highlight of the place and one of the best  things to do in Kotor  is the ruins of the St. John’s fortress towering above the city.

It’s a bit of a challenge to get all the way to the top, with over a thousand steps to climb, but the views you will see are totally worth the effort.

This is probably the most iconic panorama in Montenegro and certainly one of the most beautiful landscapes you will ever see, where rocky mountains meet turquoise water.

Since Kotor Old Town is rather small, you can see everything in one day and spend the rest of your weekend trip either relaxing at the beach or visiting one of the nearby interesting places.

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Kotor:

  • Perast Old Town on Island Our Lady of the Rocks : The most popular trips from Kotor include the charming town of Perast (known for the church on the artificial island in the middle of the picturesque Kotor Bay). The trips are every 2 hours.
  • Private Guided Walking Tour : Embark on a 90-minute guided tour of Kotor, the city of merchants and sailors, to delve into its 2,500 years of captivating history. Marvel at the architecture adorning the squares in this UNESCO-listed fortified city.

How to get to Kotor

The nearest airport is in Tivat, around 10 km away from Kotor. You can also fly to the more popular Podgorica airport, from where it’s around 2 hour drive to Kotor.

Where to stay in Kotor

To make your trip even better, you should stay in one of the historical palaces in Kotor Old Town, such as Historic Boutique Hotel Cattaro , a former Rector’s Palace.

Historic Boutique Hotel Cattaro Kotor

This way, you can get a taste of Kotor’s rich past and enjoy fine accommodation in the heart of the town.

32. Reykjavik, Iceland

Contributed by Europe in Winter

Reykjavik waterfront Claires Footsteps

Reykjavik, Iceland’s effortlessly cool capital, might not be the first European weekend trip you think of – but it’s actually ideal. 

You can visit  Reykjavik in winter or any other time of the year for an amazing experience!

Once you reach the city, you’ll find a plethora of museums covering everything from Icelandic whales to Vikings and attractions, such as the immersive FlyOver Iceland experience and Hallgrimskirkja, Reykjavik’s main church – from the top you can take in an incredible city view. 

It may be geographically isolated, but the capital has an effervescently hip vibe, with chic cafes lining the streets and a gorgeous waterfront – perfect for a stroll. 

Explore the city independently or embark on a  free walking tour  to learn more about Iceland’s history and culture. 

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Reykjavik:

  • Northern Lights by Boat in Reykjavik : Head out on a Northern Lights tour (boats leave the harbour nightly).
  • Golden Circle Full-Day Tour with Kerid Crater : Year-round day trips to the Golden Circle are always popular. Enjoy stunning natural scenery and visit the Geysir area, Gullfoss waterfall, and Þingvellir National Park.

How to get to Reykjavik 

With links to main European cities and the East Coast of America, it’s easy to reach from either – and once you get to Keflavik Airport, there’s an easy coach connection (around 45 minutes) to the capital. 

Where to stay in Reykjavik

Skuggi Hotel by Keahotels in Reykjavik

Skuggi Hotel  oozes Nordic charm. With modern bedrooms, a fresh Icelandic breakfast served each morning and a prime city center destination, it’s the ideal place to stay on a quick break to the capital. 

33. Rouen, France

Contributed by Normandie Lovers

Street with Timber Frame Buildings in Rouen France

Located in northern France, Rouen is a wonderful city, full of history from the Medieval times. You can easily discover it over a weekend .

What should you plan? Simply walk around, admire the half-timbered houses, learn about Joan of Arc and her trials, marvel at the Gros-Horloge, and be speechless in front of the huge cathedral.

The old town is so fascinating that a guided tour will help you better appreciate all the buildings that are all around you, as well as their stories. 

What a perfect weekend to travel through time!

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Rouen:

  • Guided tour of the historic center : Travel through time by observing the greatest monuments of the city of Rouen including Place de la Pucelle, Place du Vieux Marché, and discover the last moments of Joan of Arc’s life, the magnificent Courthouse of Rouen, and more!

How to get to Rouen

To get there, you can land in Paris and rent a car. The drive is 1h15 to 1h45 long. Or you can reach Rouen by train. The station is in the center, just a 10 minute walk from the old part of town.

Where to stay in Rouen

Hôtel Littéraire Gustave Flaubert in Rouen France

Plus, to make your stay even more special, the Hôtel Litteraire Gustave Flaubert is centrally located and will surround you with the words of this famous local author. 

34. Sofia, Bulgaria

Contributed by A Social Nomad

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Sofia, Bulgaria at sunset

This multicultural city has centuries of history in a small space, much of the center is pedestrianized, with a cosmopolitan, Mediterranean outdoor lifestyle in the summer months.

The best way to explore is to take a walking tour of the city.

There are mosques, cathedrals, and synagogues within a city block, and finding out how that all came about is key to understanding Sofia.  

The highlight of Sofia  is the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, one of the world’s largest Orthodox Cathedrals, but the smaller UNESCO World Heritage Boyana Church has magnificent medieval frescoes.  Visit on a trip that combines the stunning Rila Monastery.  

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Sofia:

  • Rila Monastery and Boyana Church Group Tour : Discover 2 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Bulgaria on a thrilling group tour from Sofia. Experience the awe-inspiring Rila Monastery and enjoy breathtaking mountain views. Explore the Boyana Church with its stunning pre-Renaissance frescoes.

How to get to Sofia

With an international airport that serves both national and budget airlines, Bulgaria’s capital city, Sofia is well connected as a great weekend getaway.  There’s even a metro connecting the airport to the city center, that also runs to the bus and rail terminals too (the overnight train from Istanbul is also a super way to get here).  

Where to stay in Sofia

The four-star Rosslyn Central Park Hotel is in a perfect location for exploring Sofia.

Rosslyn Central Park Hotel Sofia

Rooms have WiFi, minibars and satellite TV, an airport shuttle is available and the hotel is just 3 minutes from the National Museum of Culture. 

35. Cork, Ireland

Contributed by Amber Everywhere

Cork Ireland Best Europe Weekend Getaways

Cork is Ireland’s second city and the perfect place to visit for a weekend trip in Europe.

The city is full of lively pubs and great restaurants, so you can sip a quiet glass of wine at Meades 126 or party the night away at Bodega. 

Get an overview of the city by taking a walking tour of Cork , ideally one that includes most of the city’s main landmarks. Afterward, take in the views from Elizabeth Fort or ring the bells at Saint Anne’s Church. 

Here are some of our top recommended tours when in Cork:

  • 2-Hour Guided Cork Harbour Scenic Cruise : Experience a stunning boat trip to witness iconic landmarks like Blackrock Castle and Martello Towers. Immerse yourself in the area’s rich history while enjoying the breathtaking scenery.
  •   Jameson Experience Whiskey Tour : Today, every drop of Jameson whiskey is made in Midleton, Co Cork. Visit to see the largest pot still and a new micro-distillery in action, as well as experience the live maturation warehouse.

How to get to Cork

Cork has an international airport about 20 minutes from the city center. Alternatively, you can fly into Dublin and drive or take public transit down to Cork. The drive takes about 3.5 hours. 

Where to stay in Cork

Stay at the Imperial Hotel Cork City . This beautiful hotel is located in the center of everything, just steps from all of the action on Oliver Plunkett Street.

Imperial Hotel Cork City

The rooms are tastefully decorated, and there’s a wonderful spa onsite, in case you decide to splurge on a massage or facial during your stay.

FAQs About The Best Weekend Trips in Europe

Here are some answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about the best cities for weekend trips in Europe.

European cities are easily accessible for weekend getaways. Paris, Barcelona, and Rome are popular city break destinations. We have also included the attractions of Reykjavik, Sofia, and Budapest as great weekend getaways in Europe.

Late March to early June and September to November are the best times to visit. You’ll avoid the busy summer period and get more value for your money. In Northern Europe, May to September is warm and dry. Further south, temperatures can reach 36°C (96°F) in July and August.

Sure! You can spend a full weekend exploring the food and culture in Lisbon or Porto, both great ways to experience Portugal.

Weekend getaways in Greece have never been easier. With numerous cities and resorts to choose from, you can enjoy the sights, sounds, and tastes of the country before returning home within just 48 hours.

Croatia’s cities offer a captivating blend of heritage and modernity, with quality restaurants, vibrant nightlife, and world-facing cultural institutions. Everything you want and more for a city break!

Final Thoughts: Best Places to Visit in Europe for a Weekend

Europe is the perfect place for weekend getaways. From the vibrant city of Lisbon to the picturesque town of Cork and finally, to the beautiful city of Zurich, there are many great places to visit in Europe for a weekend trip.

From beach resorts to mountain retreats, you can find something no matter your budget or destination preference. Our travels have taken us to Greece, Italy, France, Spain, and other European countries. We’ve put this complete guide of the best quick getaways in Europe with other travel bloggers who have visited some of these destinations.

From all our travels, we’ve learned so much about what makes these places unique and special. No matter where you go in Europe, there will be something exciting and interesting waiting for you.

Whether it’s grabbing a bite from an unusual street food vendor in Lisbon or taking in the views from atop a mountain peak in Switzerland, you’ll have an unforgettable experience.

So grab your passport and get ready for an amazing weekend!

More Articles to Help You Plan Your Weekend Trip to Europe:

  • Best European Cities to Visit for any Traveler!
  • Best European Cities to Visit with Kids in Winter !
  • Read this post if you need ideas for the best European destinations for family vacations !
  • Here are our top five European family summer vacation destinations !
  • Fancy a winter European trip? Here is our list of the best cities to visit in Europe in December !
  • Here is the list of our best places to travel in Europe in kids !
  • Read all about our Europe travels on our Europe Travel Blog !
  • This post is a must-read if you are looking for the best airlines to fly to Europe !

Best Weekend Getaways In Europe

Jolene Ejmont

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2 weeks in Europe itinerary

2 Weeks in Europe – How to Plan a Perfect Itinerary

Last Modified: May 5, 2024 //  by  Anda //   106 Comments

If you are planning a 2 weeks trip to Europe and need some itinerary ideas for your vacation you have come to the right place. As someone born and raised in Europe, I can give you some good advice when it comes to my home continent.

14 days may sound like a long trip, but not on this incredibly diverse continent. With so many attractions, sights to see and cultures to experience, your 2 weeks vacation in Europe will go by in the blink of an eye! 

Prague - 2 Weeks in Europe Itinerary

Table of Contents

How to Plan a Perfect Europe Trip Itinerary

• london, paris, and amsterdam, • lisbon, madrid, barcelona , • rome, florence, and venice ,  • prague, vienna, and budapest.

  •  • Berlin, Dresden and Wroclaw     
  • • Zurich, Lucerne, Lugano and Milan      
  • • Oslo, Stockholm, Copenhagen      
  •  • Riga, Tallin, and Vilnius      
  • • Athens, Istanbul, Bucharest        
  •  • Ljubljana, Split, Dubrivnik, Kotor     

How to Plan a 2 Weeks Trip to Europe

  • Tips for Spending 2 Weeks in Europe 

A Final Note

If this is your first time in Europe, you probably have quite a few places on your Europe bucket list . Without knowing anything about you or your interests, I can only give you basic, generic advice.

Below is a list of 10 suggested itineraries for for a 2-week trip to Europe. The itineraries are grouped according to the different European regions. However, you can choose any combination from the cities listed here, according to your tastes and interests.

2 weeks in Europe Itinerary

Best Western Europe Trip 2-Week Itinerary

These three cities have more than enough to keep you engaged for 2 weeks. You can easily spend the entire two weeks in Paris , if you were to visit all its amazing churches and museums.

London, Amsterdam and Paris are among the Europe’s greatest cities and enjoy a perennial popularity, despite the many problems they have been facing lately. I think they are worth seeing at least once, even though they are always crowded.  

images for 2 weeks in Europe Itinerary: Paris, London, Amsterdam

You have excellent direct flights, trains, or bus connections between all three. There are overnight trains between Lisbon and Madrid that run daily, departing at 11:34 p.m. and arriving in Madrid at 8:40 a.m. Also, there are direct flights, trains, or busses from Madrid to Barcelona.   

All these Iberian cities are packed with culture, culinary delights and incredible landscapes. They are easy to reach from most major airports from around the world.

Although you could easily spend two weeks in Spain alone, visiting other historical places like Toledo , or Cordoba for instance, I suggest including Portugal in your European itinerary as well. Lisbon , its capital city, is not only very romantic and cultured, but also quite inexpensive. 

Book  this private walking tour of the highlights of Lisbon and enjoy the history of this city.

Two weeks in Europe itinerary idea

These are three of Italy’s most captivating and rewarding cities. If you like archeology, you’ll love Rome ! Florence and Venice are also very charming cities, although quite different from Rome. If you prefer to spend your time in one single country, this combination is one the best itineraries for a 2 weeks trip to Europe.  

Italy has a wealth of archeological sites, most of which are concentrated in relatively compact areas. These three cities also have excellent train, bus, and plain connections (buy your ticket on omio.com ).

images for a 2 week trip to Europe itinerary in Rome

Sicily is another great place in Europe where you can easily spend 2 weeks. There are so many archeological sites and  beautiful towns in Sicily to add to your list! I promise that you won’t get bored if you choose to spend your entire European vacation on this island. 

Palermo alone can easily justify a 10-day Italy itinerary . You have good bus connections between cities, but Sicily is best explored by car . You can choose visit the nearby Malta if you go to Sicily.

Central Europe 2 Weeks Trip Itinerary

Central Europe is becoming increasingly popular. 30 years ago, cities like Prague , Budapest , Dresden, or Wroclaw were largely unknown to the world traveler. But after the fall of communism, Central Europe experienced a strong cultural and tourist revival.

images for Central Europe 2 weeks trip Itinerary

These three capitals have it all: beautiful architecture, fascinating history, packed concert calendars, and delicious food. For those who want to tour Central Europe, this trip itinerary is perfect.

Traveling by rail is the best way to go between these three, as distances are relatively short. You can buy tickets at the station right before the train is scheduled to depart.      

READ NEXT : Budapest Travel Tips and Practical Information for First Time Visitors

 • Berlin, Dresden and Wroclaw      

Combining the cosmopolitan  Berlin with the  phoenix-city  of Dresden and the picturesque Wroclaw, will give you a great understanding of what makes this part of Europe so fascinating. You have direct trains between all these cities.

Berlin, Dresden, Wroclaw images

• Zurich, Lucerne, Lugano and Milan        

You can never go wrong with Switzerland and the northern part of Italy! Cities like Lucerne, Zurich, Lugano and Milan have stunning scenery, art museums, old cathedrals, historic palaces, and more charm than you can imagine.  However they are not very big, so 2-3 days in each one would most likely be enough.  

images for 2 Weeks Europe trip Itinerary: Zurich, Lucerne, Lugano, Milan Itinerary

The best way to move between these cities is by rail. Switzerland is famous for its top of the line panoramic trains , so you can choose to travel from Lucerne to Lugano aboard the  Gotthard Panorama Express.  You can also take the same route on a non-panoramic train  if you want to avoid paying the mandatory reservation fee.

READ NEXT : 10 Days in Switzerland Itinerary by Scenic Trains

Northern Europe 2 Weeks Itinerary

• oslo, stockholm, copenhagen        .

These three cities are definitely in a league of their own. Although they can’t compete with Rome’s historic sites or with the charm of Paris, Copenhagen , Oslo and Stockholm have stunning architecture, world-class museums, and some of the best shopping and dining in Europe.

If you plan to spend your 2 weeks vacation in Northern Europe during the summer months, this trip itinerary is your best bet. While the rest of Europe is be boiling hot, Northern Europe enjoys much cooler temperatures and longer days in summer.

2 weeks in Europe itinerary ideas

READ NEXT : 10 Fantastic Things to Do in Stockholm in a Week

  • Riga , Tallin, and Vilnius       

I can’t mention Northern Europe without including a tour of the Baltic capitals. The Baltic States of Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania weren’t even on the map when I was growing up. But like many other European countries that lived in the shadow of the Soviet Union till the 90s, they have enjoyed a true renaissance in the past years.

If you want to travel somewhere your friends haven’t even heard of, you should visit the Baltic capitals. Plus these are among the cheapest countries to visit in Europe .

Vilnius, Tallin, Riga 2 weeks in Europe Itinerary

South-Eastern Europe – 2 Weeks Trip Itineraries

The Balkan Peninsula is the most culturally diverse in Europe. This region has also an extremely varied topography. Bordered by the Adriatic and Ionian Sea to the west, Aegean Sea to the south, the Sea of Marmara to the southeast and the Black Sea to the east, the Balkan countries are stunningly beautiful.

There are so many great destinations in South-Eastern Europe, that it’s difficult to decide which ones to include into your trip itinerary. Here are two suggestions:

• Athens, Istanbul, Bucharest          

If you plan to build your itinerary around these three cities, you could spend 3 days in Athens , 7 days in Istanbul and 2-3 days in Bucharest . Or you can choose spend your entire 2 weeks trip to Europe by visiting just one country. We did that last year and took a road trip in the Peloponnese. It was an unexpected success, it was pleasant and we had a great time there. Peloponnese is one of the less explored parts of Greece, but is so beautiful that you won’t believe. It has plenty of beach town, some of which are nicer and more sophisticated that the Ritzi Greek island, like the beach tow of Nafplio .

Countries like Greece , Turkey, or Romania have plenty of amazing sites to keep you entertained and engaged for 14 days. 

Athens, Istanbul, Bucharest itinerary

The best way to travel between these 3 countries is by plane. Between Istanbul and Athens you an use Pegasus Airlines (a budget airline) and between Istanbul and Bucharest you can use Turkish Airlines.

 • Ljubljana , Split , Dubrivnik, Kotor      

These four cities will take you through 3 of the most beautiful countries in the Balkans: Slovenia, Croatia and Montenegro . The best way to travel between these cities would be by car or by bus, as there are no train connections between Split and Dubrovnik.

For those who want to rent a car to drive through the Balkans, I recommend this 14 days Balkans road trip itinerary . If you have a car, you can extend your itinerary to some other points of interest in this region.

trip ideas to europe

Planning a trip to Europe? Read next: 12 Tips for Traveling to Europe Like a Pro

Being born and raised in Europe I always get asked these two questions:  when is the best time go to Europe and what is the best itinerary for a first time visit to Europe. My answer it’s always the same: it depends what you want to do in Europe and how much time you can spend there.

If this is your first time in Europe and all you have is 14 days, there are a few things to consider before deciding what to add to your list:      

 • Keep your travel plans simple      

Most first time visitors to Europe are determined to see as much as possible on that first trip. Keep in mind that Europe is a big and diverse continent. There is a lot to see everywhere you go. Fitting all your bucket-listed locations in a 2 weeks trip to Europe is nearly impossible.      

 • Start with the most popular cities   

Your first trip to Europe is not the best time to go off the beaten path. I recommend sticking to the big cities, even though they are more crowded. Major European cities have it all: top notch museums, beautiful architecture, great restaurants and a vibrant nightlife.

Besides, they are big transportations hubs and are cheaper for flying in and out of Europe.

View of Paris skyline

• Choose to visit places that are close to each other   

The closest major European cities are at least two hours apart, whether you travel by car, by train, or by plane. Transit between cities takes at least half a day, if you consider the time you need to check out of one hotel and check into your next one. Therefore, you won’t be able to do much sightseeing on the day you travel.        

 • Plan to spend at least 3-4 days in each city you visit   

While it’s possible to cover more than half a dozen countries in your 14 days in Europe, just running between destinations doesn’t mean you actually visited them! If you want to see at least the major sights, you should plan to spend a minimum of 3-4 days in each city you visit.

• Book an open-jaw ticket     

If you plan on touring a specific region or doing a multi-destination trip, you can often save a lot of time and money with booking one.

destinations for 2 weeks in Europe itinerary

Once you’re further along in your planning process, you can use our  Travel Resources page for the best deals in airfare, accommodations and local guided tours.

• Rent a car only if you are planning to travel outside the big cities, where parking is expensive and difficult to find. Nonetheless, sometimes renting a car will save you a lot of time and is obviously more comfortable. We usually use Discovercars when we travel in Europe.

Tips for Spending 2 Weeks in Europe  

• book accommodations in the city center      .

Hotel rates are higher in the city center, but it’s worth paying the extra dollars if you can afford it. You’ll save time and money on transportation.     

• Use Hotel Alternatives

AirBnB or VRBO   for lodging instead of booking hotel rooms, especially if you travel in a bigger group. They are a much better deal and have beautiful apartments all around the world. For the same price you would pay for an average hotel, you could rent an entire apartment.    

• Don’t exchange money in the airport   

Airports, train stations, or tourist areas have the worst exchange rates. But if you look for an exchange office outside these areas, your hard earned money can go a way longer way. If no exchange booths are around, use the ATM machines throughout the city.    

   • Consider using public transportation

Driving a car Europe is an expensive and inconvenient complication. None of these European cities were built with cars in mind, so the roads are crowded and full of restrictions. Rather than worrying  about parking fees, one way streets, and pedestrian zones, consider using public transportation during your 2 weeks in Europe.     

 • Travel by train, or use budget airlines  

Train travel through Europe is one of the best ways to see the continent. The rail network is extremely developed and train service is very reliable. For longer distances, flying one of the many European airlines is also a great option.

There are over a dozen budget airlines in Europe that fly anywhere on the continent for unbelievably low prices. They charge extra for seats and luggage, but even so you can fly for as low as €30-40/one way.    

   • Dress comfortably

Dressing comfortably when you travel to Europe is very important, but avoid looking like a tourist. Not sure how to blend in with the locals? Read my guide about how to dress like a European .  

Buy the best shoes you can afford. I can stress enough the importance of wearing comfortable shoes while traveling in Europe. Many of the old European cities are still paved with cobble stones which are very rough on your soles.

   • Travel off season  

Everyone wants to travel when the weather is stable, but summers can be brutal in Europe: big crowds, expensive accommodations and airfare, busy trains and public transportation and very hot.

The best time to visit Europe is in fall or in spring, when temperatures are milder and there are less crowds. December is also a very popular time of year to visit Europe, when most European cities dress up for the holidays .

• Get acquainted with the European lifestyle

Most travelers to Europe expect to encounter cultural differences, yet when confronted with them they are always caught off guard. I wrote a very detailed post about what will surprise you as a first time visitor to Europe. These are very useful tips that you will need before traveling to Europe.

READ NEXT : 15 Cheapest Countries to Visit in Europe

This guide is a good resource if you intend to visit Europe independently. However, if you prefer an organized tour there are plenty of great tours of Europe to choose from.

Hope the itineraries above gave you some idea on how to travel Europe in 2 weeks. And if you like a place you saw, make a plan to return and explore it more in depth. Two weeks in Europe will not be enough to see this magical continent.

Did you enjoy this post? Please pin it to help other travelers to Europe:

Two weeks in Europe pin

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Anda is an award winning travel writer, avid globetrotter and passionate photographer. She is the voice behind "Travel Notes & Beyond," a collection of stories and travel impressions from her wanderings around the world. When she is not busy writing, traveling, or editing photographs, you can find her hiking in the foothills behind her house together with her husband and their dog.

trip ideas to europe

Reader Interactions

Vipin Singh

January 13, 2024 at 6:56 am

Greetings from Singapore Anda. I am an avid traveler but have only done Asia so far. I am planning my first Europe trip in this upcoming June, mid month. I have circled down to 4 cities that iam keen on going to. But now, after reading much online, i figured that it will be more ideal to include just 3 cities in my itinerary. I had London, Paris, Rome, Spain (Madrid/Barcelo) in mind initially. I am looking for advice to reduce one city if needed for this trip. I have 13 days to spend (including arrival date to London in the morning before 7am. And excluding departure date) Appreciate your reply.

January 16, 2024 at 2:24 pm

Since this is your first trip to Europe, I’d go to London, Paris and Rome. I’m sure you won’t regret it.

Chetan Sahu

October 7, 2023 at 5:59 am

Planning my dream 2-week European adventure, and this guide is a goldmine of itinerary ideas! From the iconic cities to hidden gems, it’s packed with invaluable tips for an unforgettable trip. So, which European journey will I embark on? The possibilities are endless!

Chandra Bdr Gurung

July 6, 2023 at 11:43 pm

Excellent advice for those who are first-time visitors. This blog really impressed me. Europe has some really interesting sites to visit.

Ana Delos Santos

April 28, 2023 at 10:55 am

Hi, this is really helpful for 1st time Travelers in Europe. Just want to also ask you, for a 2 week Europe Trip, what do you advise to those traveling with Kids that wanted to visit countries in Europe with an Entry and Exit point from the Philippines? Thanks for the possible response. God bless you.

April 28, 2023 at 11:58 am

I am not aware that coming from the Philippines (with or without kids) may pose any problem for entering any country in Europe. However, if you want further more detailed information you should check the respective country’s entry requirements. Sorry I can’t be of more help.

basil swamy

March 22, 2023 at 11:36 am

Looking for Europe tour starting from India, for honeymoon would like to explore Europe. Places need to cover Norway Amsterdam Brussels Paris Switzerland Pissa Florence Rome Venice

Travel dates will be 9Jun to 29Jun It should be not very expensive , reasonable place to stay either good apartment or good Hotel You can suggest if some needs to be cut short or some other place. Do not want any museum or historical place to cover. It should be main and popular area only.

March 22, 2023 at 7:16 pm

I’m sorry, but I am not a travel agent, Basil. You can use my post for reference in order build your own itinerary.

July 13, 2022 at 2:52 pm

Great guide – but overwhelming!! My wife and I are taking our first trip to Europe next year – a long kid- and COVID- delayed 20th/25th/30th anniversary! – and want to make the most of our 3 weeks. But you just listed 31 must-see cities, and suggested 3-4 days per city!! 🙂

My wife wants to “see the highlights” – if we never can come back, what should we make sure we see? I think we’d probably be best served by a managed tour, but maybe I can cobble together something with even hand-holding? 🙂 Advice would be *so* appreciated!

July 13, 2022 at 6:16 pm

Hi Rick, Thanks for reading my guide. I have indeed 31 must-see cities in Europe, but those are 10 independent itineraries and each one of them is for two weeks. If you want to spend 3 weeks in Europe you definitely won’t be able to include all those places in your itinerary. I can give you a few suggestions for a 3-week itinerary, but planning the trip in detail will require a lot of effort from your part.

You’ll need to research each destination and decide what you’d like to see once you get there, book hotels, check timetables for trains and busses, or maybe rent a car in some places, etc. Since I don’t know anything about your travel style, I can’t tell you whether to attempt this trip on your own, or book a guided tour. Many people prefer to be care-free when they travel and just sit back and enjoy. We like to travel independently and do our own planning, but I can assure you it’s not easy. One other option would be to book local guided tours in each country, but travel independently between countries.This way you’ll have more control over what countries you may want to visit.

In regards to the “highlights” of Europe, there are so many! But regardless of what you choose, you shouldn’t include more than 4 countries in 3 weeks because you’ll have to account for the days you loose when moving from one place to another. Here are my suggestions. My first choice for Europe would be Italy, France and Spain. They are rich in culture and architecture and have gorgeous scenery. My second choice is Portugal, Switzerland and Croatia. Not as culturally rich as Italy, or France, but surely breathtakingly beautiful. If you are looking for less expensive destinations, Central and Eastern European countries are more budget friendly (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania).

I hope this helps. I have lots of European destination on my blog in case you want to do some further reading. And remember: no matter what country you choose, you’ll love Europe!

July 6, 2021 at 11:40 am

Hi there Anda!

Me and my are planning eloping and then honeymooning to Europe. Neither of us have been and I have family in the Sicily area. I originally wanted to go to Hawaii as I am an avid beach lover and have been to many in search of the most beautiful beach. My finance enjoys the beach, but is definitely more of a historian. So, I would like to encompass a little of both. We plan on late September or sometime in October….14 days. What are your thoughts? Do you think we should use a travel agent? Thanks so much!

July 6, 2021 at 1:24 pm

Hi Carrie, September-October is a great time of year for visiting Italy and I think Sicily is a wonderful choice if you like beaches. It has plenty of historic sites, so it’s the best of both worlds: history and beaches. I have a lot of information about Sicily on this blog, so for further reading you can go under Destinations > Europe > Italy > Sicily and read more. I also have a very informative post about driving in Sicily, should you decide to rent a car for your trip.

I don’t believe you need a travel agent to design your itinerary or make reservations for you. At the bottom of my home page there are some links that you can use to check out prices. I also have a Resource Page if you need more information on car rental and lodging. And if you need more itinerary ideas, read this post: https://travelnotesandbeyond.com/10-days-in-italy-itinerary/ . It includes 4 itinerary ideas for Italy to choose from. Please let me know if you need any further assistance.

March 1, 2021 at 10:40 am

This is very informative. My husband and I have been to several countries in Europe, but not our son. He wants to go to Germany, and I think with more than 2 weeks travel time that we will have, a visit to several cities in Central Europe will make sense to us. My friend in Zurich will be happy to take us around.

March 1, 2021 at 7:38 pm

Hope you’ll get to visit Germany, Umiko. I have relatives in Münich and go to Germany quite often.

January 27, 2021 at 3:03 am

Hi Anda, I have to say, this is a great itinerary for first time travelers. I’ve been living in Europe for almost 2 years now but I still have not seen most of the places in this list and I would consider myself a “first time traveler” to most of these destinations. It gave me tons of ideas though once we finally get to travel again and I love your pctures.

January 28, 2021 at 2:05 pm

Thanks, Marielle.

I love Croatia

January 9, 2021 at 6:09 am

Absolutely stunning! Thank you on a detailed impressive guide!

January 9, 2021 at 10:51 am

Thanks, Karlo.

October 22, 2020 at 8:00 am

Hi Anda! Thank you for all of your articles and tips! I’m trying to soak everything in while planning for a 2-week trip next August 2021. I know you said August is the worst time to go to Europe but I am to be a part of a bridal entourage early that month and have no leeway in that regard – hoping to make the best of it! What are your suggestions for 3 first time Europe travelers to make the MOST of our time but with about three days locked in at London for the ceremony? I was thinking of coming a week before the festivities and staying a week after, putting the wedding in the middle of the two weeks – if that makes sense. Please help! Thank you so much, Christine

October 22, 2020 at 4:59 pm

Hi Christine, A wedding in London sounds like a great reason to visit Europe. The good news is that London is not so hot in August as other cities in Europe. Here are my recommendations for you:

1. I would get the wedding out of the way and then go on with my travel plans. Or leave it for the end of the trip, but not place it in the middle.

2. I would avoid big, crowded cities (like Paris or Rome) where the asphalt radiates even more heat in summer. Keep in mind that many of the buildings in Europe don’t have air conditioning, so there is very little relief from the heat.

3. Rather than big cities, I would visit places that have a breeze, or have access to the Mediterranean, or the Adriatic Sea. My personal favorites for summer are the French Riviera (Nice, Monaco, Cannes), Italy (the Amalfi Coast, or Sicily), Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast (Dubrovnik, Split, Pula, etc.) Italy, France and Croatia seem like good options for you since they are also close to England.

4. Other great countries to visit in August are: Austria, Switzerland and Germany. For instance, you could spend 1-2 days in Vienna, then go to Salzburg and use it as a base for wonderful day trips in the Alps. Or stay 2 days in Zurich and do a Switzerland itinerary. You can also do a combination of countries, but I wouldn’t visit more than two considering that you already have London on your list.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any further questions. I’m sure your trip is going to be great!

October 18, 2020 at 11:25 am

Hi: A friend and I would like to visit somewhere in Europe for 2 or so weeks, and stay in a smaller village and “live” like a local. Yet, also be close enough to other places or countries to take day trips via public transportation. Any suggestions?

October 19, 2020 at 4:47 pm

Your friend could stay for instance in one of the many villages on the French Riviera (like Ezé Village) which are close to Nice,and visit the the entire coast in two weeks. Or perhaps stay in one of the villages in Tuscany, which are close to Florence, and many other fascinating places in Italy.

RAJEEV JAIN

October 6, 2020 at 10:14 pm

Me & my wife wants to cover Europe in 20-30 days. Just for your information I had travelled to Italy & covered Rome, Florence, Venice & Milan. I want to cover other countries & beautiful cities of Europe. Can you suggest best time & an itinerary to visit except July/August when the weather is pleasant & one can travel in budget.

October 7, 2020 at 4:23 pm

Hi Rajeev, late September to early October is a great time to travel to Europe. So is spring, late April to early June. As for an itinerary, you can cover a lot of territory in a month in Europe. I would suggest visiting some of the countries in the Balkans (Croatia, Montenegro, Slovenia).I have a complete itinerary for the Balkans on my blog, if you are interested. Also, you could visit the Baltic countries (Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia) and Sweden. Eastern European countries like Hungary and Romania are also good choice for a fall visit. Hope this helps.

Mitos Soria

February 13, 2020 at 6:19 am

Hello, me my friend will be traveling to Europe in August 2020 ( I know not a good time to go there) for the first time. We have 2 weeks to go to cities we prefer. And that is Italy and Paris. We are in for outlet shopping, visit museum and architectures. Can you recommend us a place to go to met our preferences? And if we would add one more country what would that be? By the way we are flying from Manila. Thank you very much.

February 13, 2020 at 11:09 am

Hi Mitos, even though August it’s kind of hot in Europe, I’m sure you’ll have a lot of fun. Especially if you plan to go shopping, hahaha! Paris and Rome are great places to shop and so is Milan and London. I also like shopping in Vienna, where they have a big pedestrian area (the Graben) lined up with stores. All these cities have magnificent architecture, old churches and palaces that you can visit. Prices are a little higher in Europe than they are in Asia or the US, but I love shopping there just the same. They have so much trendier clothing stores than we do. My favorite one is Massimo Dutti, you should check it out.

SHYAMSUNDER GAIKWAD

February 2, 2020 at 3:29 pm

Hi Anda, Me and my wife plan to travel to Europe for about 10 to 14 days(depends) from the first week of August’2020 (After my sons final semester Exams). Flight ticket are yet to be booked. This would be our first trip to Europe. We plan to cover Europe in six visits, this would be our first. Both of have past our half century mark and have taken a sabbatical. Could you please suggest us an Itinerary? Is August a good time to travel

February 2, 2020 at 3:30 pm

Hi Shyamsunder, August is one of the worst times to go to Europe: it’s hot, it’s expensive and it’s crowded. I know you may be bound to your son’s vacation time, so if August is the only time you have available, I would suggest going to Northern Europe. You can visit Sweden, Norway, and the Baltic countries (Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia). Either that, or choose to spend your entire vacation in southern Italy, in places close to the sea (Capri, Positano, Cinque Terre, or Sicily).

January 27, 2020 at 1:23 pm

Thanks for your insight and prompt response. Travel planning can be overwhelming and your site has been extremely helpful. The more I dig into options and different itiniraries my gut keeps saying to stick with Italy and you helped confirm this even more! Another thought was to combine a 7n cruise but again my gut (and hubby) prefers a land based trip. So sticking with Italy it seems just 3 cities maybe better (based on your suggestion) with day trips mixed in…Venice, Rome & Florence. Initial plan was for Cique Terre which maybe too much. The idea of Lake Cumo is a really good one! Now need to explore those logistics!

Anda Galffy

January 27, 2020 at 1:28 pm

Glad I could be of help, Sandra. Just one last note: keep in mind that Rome is a big city, rich in history and archeological sites. You will need at least 4-5 days to explore it properly. Have a wonderful trip.

January 27, 2020 at 1:22 pm

Hi Anda, Just found your site and love the information. We are late in planning our 20th anniversary trip to Italy in May. We have 16 days so 14 nights exculuding travel. This is our first time to Europe (other than Greece) in a very long time. Initial thoughts are fly into Venice 2n, Florence, 4n, Cinque Terre 4n, Rome 4n – Now second guessing about all Italy (which I know is all good) but maybe adding Amsterdam or another city and subtracting days from Italy. Any thoughts input appreciated!

Hi Sandra, first of all congratulations on your 20th anniversary! Italy is a great choice to mark this important event in your life and I’m sure this will be a trip to remember. My personal opinion is that Italy has so much to offer that it’s not a good idea to add Amsterdam to the mix. The two-week European itineraries I recommend in my post are for people who want to get a feel of Europe and explore some of the big cities. I think you’ll be better off spending all your time in Italy and exploring as much as you can there. Instead of Amsterdam, you could go to Lake Como, for instance. It’s a very romantic destination for an anniversary.

January 18, 2020 at 10:37 pm

Anda So glad I found your site. I’m in the beginning stages of planning a trip for late 2020 (Christmas time) for my husband and myself. I think you’ve helped me decide on Italy. Christmas is the only time he has vacation so we’re locked in to that time of year. We’d both like to see Pompeii, so I was thinking Naples to Rome and ending up in Venice. We have 2 weeks, so I think we could take our time and stop if we’d like to see something along the way. What do you think about going to Italy this time of year? Are trains reliable in winter? Thanks for any help you can give me. Karen

January 19, 2020 at 12:01 am

Hi karen, Italy is actually a great choice for winter, particularly in December when you’ll have the Christmas markets everywhere. Prices may be still pretty high because of the Holidays, but there will definitely be less crowds. You may expect colder weather in Northern Italy (Rome and Venice), but the Amalfi Coast (Pompeii and Naples) will be beautiful. I don’t think you’ll have any issues with the trains. It doesn’t snow often in northern Italy and even if does, the weather doesn’t impact public transportation. I think you’ll enjoy Italy tremendously! It’s a great place to visit. You may want to check this post as well if you are traveling to Rome: https://travelnotesandbeyond.com/best-areas-to-stay-in-rome/

cybele ryan

January 23, 2020 at 3:35 pm

Anda what wonderful information. My husband and I planning a trip to Europe in mid May for two weeks. Thinking about flying into Switzerland or Austria, dipping down into Italy then on to Slovenia and Croatia. We are told Slovenia is very similar to Italy. We could stay in Slovenia and train over to Venice for the day, avoiding crowds ect. Any ideas? take the train, rent a car?Thank you! Cybele

January 23, 2020 at 5:52 pm

Train is probably better for the day trip. Besides, in Venice you won’t have any need for the car.

December 31, 2019 at 4:44 am

Hullo Anda, your article literally saved my life. I have read it twice and sucked in as much of your advice so thank you. I am black and I was wondering if you have any specific advice for a black travelers in Europe. What is the general reception for black africans in Europe? I may be overthinking it, but I am worried that it may be negative. Your honest thoughts will be appreciated. thanks.

December 31, 2019 at 3:39 pm

I’m truly happy that my article was of help to you. I don’t think you have any reason to worry about traveling to Europe as a black person. As far as I know, Europeans are quite open and welcoming to any race and nationality. I think you’ll have a wonderful time there.

December 28, 2019 at 6:04 am

Thankyou for the suggestions. We are planning to visit Europe from US for two weeks from April 24 to May 9 . Our itenrary idea is to arrive in Paris > Milan > Venice > Cinque terra> Florence > Rome . While at florence we planned to visit Pisa for half day Will this be aggressive or Do-able? Can you please suggest on how many days each city require to explore? Thanks in Advance

December 28, 2019 at 9:15 am

Hi Satya, What you are listing here looks like a very busy itinerary. All these cities are loaded with attractions. Besides, you need time for transportation between the different destinations and time to check in and out from the hotels. Rome and Paris require at least 3 days each. Milan you can probably do in a day, but for Florence, Venice and Cinque Terre you’ll also need a minimum of two days. My suggestion would be to leave Paris for another time and concentrate on Italy.

December 28, 2019 at 7:44 pm

Thank you Anda

December 26, 2019 at 10:30 am

Hi Anda, Thankyou for the detailed itenenaries. We are planning for Europe trip during last week of April for two weeks. Our plan is to arrive in Paris and depart back from Rome. So planning for Paris> Fly to Milan> Venice> Cinque terra > Florence> Rome . Is this agressive or Doable? Do you recommend driving from Milan to Rome for this trip? Can you help me with how many days we will needing to explore these places? Appriciete your help on this.

December 18, 2019 at 12:59 pm

Hi Anda, I am planning a trip with my wife and 2 kids (3 & 9) to visit Europe in Mid-June. we are planning to spend 14 days and planning to land in Paris then train to Zurich > Interlaken (might add Zermatt if time permits) > Venice > Florence > Rome. Does this sound doable in 14 days? Any tips and recommendations? Should we get the Euro Rail Pass or buying individual trip will be better and cheaper option? Thanks.

December 18, 2019 at 7:27 pm

Hi Ali, your plan sounds great for two young adults who can move fast. However, with two kids in tow and using public transportation (not having your own car) this sounds like a very busy itinerary. You need a minimum of 3 days in the big cities like Rome and Paris. As for Zurich, Venice and Florence, you could probably spend only 2 days in each city. But even if you do that, you’ll be left with only two days, which is not enough time if you want to squeeze in Zermatt and Interlaken. I understand you are planning to use Rome as your departure city, but exploring it with a 3-year old will be very difficult. Rome is huge and truly overwhelming, even for adults. I would suggest spending more time in Switzerland instead, which is a friendlier place for small children. You can buy a pass for the scenic trains and go from Zurich to Lucerne, Interlaken, Zermatt, St.Moritz, Engadin and maybe cross over to Lake Como in Italy. The Glacier Express is a fantastic train and goes from Zermatt to St. Moritz. Your kids are going to love the train rides. I wrote a few posts about our train trip through Switzerland, in case you need more information.

November 14, 2019 at 4:16 pm

Hi, my husband and I have plan 13 days trip 11 nights for travel to Barcelona, Switzerland, Munich and Amsterdam. The 1st arrival destination has decided is Barcelona as we want to catch the football match. 2nd destination we not sure want to start from Amsterdam, Munich and end in Switzerland or vice versa. Is it possible to squeeze Milan or Paris in between by the way?

November 14, 2019 at 5:09 pm

You can easily squeeze one day in Milan on your itinerary, Agnes. I wrote a post about how to spend a day in Milan, in case you are interested you can check it here: https://travelnotesandbeyond.com/one-day-on-the-streets-of-milan/ . From Barcelona you can go to Milan, then to Switzerland, Munich and Amsterdam. Not sure exactly what means of transportation you intend to use in Europe, but it makes sense to do it this way rather than jump from Spain all the way to the Netherlands. In regards to Paris, I would leave it for another trip. There is too much to see there to be able to squeeze it into this itinerary. You’ll need at least 3 days for it, while Milan can be done in one day.

November 5, 2019 at 6:20 pm

Hi Anda.. Greetings from Malaysia.!! Great advice for first time traveller to europe. Me and my friends planning to come over to europe in may next year. We are having some difficulties choosing places to visit as europe is super big and all the places look so beautiful. We will be landing in amsterdam. I would love to go paris,london n also swiss. And we have only two weeks to cover and we have no idea where to start. Super confussed. First time in europe.! Thank you.

November 5, 2019 at 9:30 pm

Hi Reva. Since you land in Amsterdam you could probably do Amsterdam, Paris and London. You need to spend at least 3 days in each of these cities in order to see at least the main points of interest. You probably have time to see one city in Switzerland as well. I would recommend Lucerne, since it’s a smaller one and can be done in about two days. Hope this helps.

September 14, 2019 at 4:10 am

Great suggestions! Planning a trip next June ( I know, I know), your suggestions are great.

September 14, 2019 at 2:10 pm

I’m glad if you found my suggestions useful. Thanks, Jackie.

April 21, 2019 at 6:25 am

Anda, thank you for the very informative article. Loved going through it and your detailed responses to the questions below. I and my wife are planning to travel in August(2nd and 3rd week). We have zeroed in on France(only Paris) and Italy. I know the temperature will be on the higher side, but I guess should be a breeze considering we are from India 🙂 (or are we way off the mark?) What according to you are good destinations to include in the itinerary in Italy, beyond Rome, Venice, and Florence)?

April 21, 2019 at 9:31 am

Hi VB, since your trip to Europe in in full summer, I would suggest a couple of destinations closer to the water. In Italy you can add Cinque Terre and maybe Lake Como. Both of them absolutely spectacular. In France, just about an hour away by plane you can go to he French Riviera. The coast is much cooler and absolutely spectacular. You have places like Nice, Monaco, Cann, Antibes, plus the many perched villages along the coast that are absolutely a dream to visit. Hope this helps.

April 9, 2019 at 8:56 am

I was trying to plan a 20th anniversary trip for myself and my wife in July, 2020. I was planning on just doing a Western trip visiting London, Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam, and Berlin but now I’m worried it’s going to be too hot. We already live in Charleston, South Carolina (US) which is miserably hot in the summer so we always try to find cooler places to go.

I was thinking of this route because there are now direct flights from CHS to London and I get employee discounts at Hilton properties (about $50 USD/night). There are hotels all within 1.5 miles of the train station in each of those cities so this would be most economical.

I would rather visit Northern Europe because of the cooler weather and because my family immigrated from Sweden. However,, there are no Hilton properties in any of the Scandavian cities except Stockholm.

I’m just wondering if you think it is worth it to spend a lot more to visit Northern Europe or just battle the heat and crowds to visit Western Europe.

April 9, 2019 at 10:15 am

Hi Michael, Europe is very hot and humid in summer, as you already know. I would rather spend a little more and go to countries like Norway, Sweden or the Baltic countries (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania). I believe there is a Hilton in Riga as well, if I am not wrong). However, you may want to look into Airbnb as an alternative if you can’t find a Hilton. Most of the time they are way cheaper than a hotel and you get much more for your money.

April 7, 2019 at 11:25 am

This is a great guide! I’ve been searching everywhere for ideas on how to go about a European trip. I’ve never been so I wasn’t sure where to start. Is it possible to do a trip with London, Paris, Amsterdam, Rome, Florence, and Venice? What would be the beat way to do that?

April 7, 2019 at 8:54 pm

Squeezing 7 cities of this size into a 2 weeks trip seems too much to me. I would recommend keeping it at 4, at the most. You will spend too much time on the road and too little time visiting the sites. Florence and Amsterdam could be done in about 4 days, if you just want to rush by, but the other cities requires way more time for proper visiting. I would not advise you to add more than at the most 5 cities to your itinerary, unless you have more than just 2 weeks.

April 6, 2019 at 3:28 pm

Hello Anda,

This article is very informative and useful as I am planning a graduation gift for my girlfriend this summer. She’s a mechanical engineer and loves architecture, but has never been to Europe. I do plan on 2 weeks, give or take a few days. Do to the traveling being in June (not the best time), where would you recommend going? Regarding weather, locations, travel season, etc. I’ve only been to France but was there for wine industry. I’m fine with traveling by train or by car as I have done both. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thank you for your time!

April 7, 2019 at 9:01 pm

Hi Nick, I’m glad you found my post useful and informative. Summers in Europe may be very hot, so I would recommend you go to Northern Europe, where the weather is much cooler. And if your girlfriend loves architecture, she will have a blast visiting cities like Stockholm and Riga. I would recommend the Baltic countries and Sweden. You don’t need to drive there. You can fly between the cities for very little money.

March 31, 2019 at 7:45 am

Hi, Anda. I’m taking my daughter to Europe in May. Got a great R/T flight into (and out of) Barcelona. We will be there 2 weeks, and I’d like to add 3 other cities. She really wants to go to Florence (but not Rome??‍♀️). We plan to book a rail pass and Air BnBs. Any recs for our 3 must-see cities. She’s 20 and has never been to Europe.

April 1, 2019 at 1:00 pm

Hi Stacy, Barcelona is a very exciting destination for young people. I’m sure your daughter will love it. You’ll have to decide how many countries you want to include in your two weeks trip. You have quite a few choices in Spain, if you decide to stay only there. You can spend 3 days in Barcelona, then go towards the west and Visit Madrid (3 days), Toledo (a day trip from Madrid), Granada and Sevilla. From there you can fly back to Barcelona. Or you can spend a few days in Barcelona, then go to Paris, Milan and Florence. The second option includes 3 countries, but it will give your daughter a taste of some of the most impressive cities in Europe. Hope this helps.

February 26, 2019 at 9:36 am

I will be visiting Europe for two weeks in may and would like to know what do you suggest we could see as we will arrive in Rome and depart from Paris.

February 26, 2019 at 4:56 pm

Hi Rhea, May is one of the best times to visit Europe. The weather is just perfect and the tourist season is not in full swing yet. Since I don’t know you and your interests, I would make some suggestions based on my own taste and experience. Both Rome and Paris are very big cities and you might want to allow yourself at least 3 days in each one of them. They are packed with attractions, ranging from historic sites and landmarks, to museums, art galleries, parks and restaurants. In Rome you might want to concentrate on the historic center (including the Vatican) and allow yourself a little time to simply wander the streets and admire the beautiful architecture. I wrote a post about the best areas to stay in Rome that will give you an idea about what attractions are in the different parts of the city ( https://travelnotesandbeyond.com/best-areas-to-stay-in-rome/ ). While you are in Italy, you might also want to include Florence and Milan in your itinerary. Florence is not very big and it quite easy to explore (great for art galleries and museums). You could spend 2 days in Florence and one day in Milan ( https://travelnotesandbeyond.com/?s=one+day+in+milan ). From Milan you could go to Switzerland and maybe take a scenic train trip through Zermatt, Interlaken, Lucerne).Or you may go directly to France and visit Marseille, Lyon and then Paris. If this is your first time in Europe I would suggest keeping it simple. Probably just Italy and France would be enough. For Paris, you might want to refer to this post that will give you an idea about what you can see in 3 days: https://travelnotesandbeyond.com/?s=3+days+in+paris . I hope this helps and I hope you’ll come back with some great memories from your trip to Europe.

January 31, 2019 at 9:46 pm

Hi Anda Me and my husband are planning a trip to Europe for 2 weeks in early May 2019. As of now we are planning to visit Prague, Vienna, Budapest & Greece. Could you please suggest if its doable also if its the good time to visit these places.

P.S : We will be visiting Europe for the first time and we are more inclined towards scenic and natural beauty , could you please suggest more affordable options.

Many Thanks ! Parul

January 31, 2019 at 10:20 pm

Hi Parul, Europe is beautiful at any time of year, but particularly in spring. Vienna, Budapest and Prague are very close to each other so can move easily from one to the next (either by train or by car). Trains are very affordable in Europe, especially if you buy a pass. I suggest spending 3 days in each one of these cities to at least get a taste of what they have to offer. You could leave Greece for last, as you will need to take a plane to get there. In regards to affordability, Europe in generally expensive. However, you will find Budapest (and Greece) more affordable overall. For lodging I use Airbnb or VRBO (Vacation Rentals By Owner), as I get more for my money. Hope this helps.

Vaibhav Jain

February 2, 2019 at 10:21 am

Hey, thanks for this informative and detailed info about getting around in Europe.. every word made sense to me.. I just want a small suggestion from you.. I am solo traveller and will be starting my itinerary as “Prague (2n)-Copenhagen (4N)-Budapest (2N)- Barcelona (3N)- Amsterdam (2N)” in total of about 13 N starting from 13 th March 2019.. My question is : I want to add another city between my trip from Copenhagen to Budapest as I think 4 Nights will be too boring in there.. so can you please suggest which place to add in for 1 N ??? I am getting some real good deals for Brussels, Berlin, Milan… for Ryan Sir & Easy jet from Copenhagen.. please enlighten me for this as I am super confused ??? Thanks in anticipation ….

February 2, 2019 at 3:18 pm

Your itinerary seems pretty busy for 13 days. All these cities you selected make wonderful destinations in themselves. You could easily spend 13 days in each one of them and still have plenty to see and do. My suggestion would be to spend 3 nights in Prague or in Budapest, rather than trying to squeeze in another city into the itinerary. Europe is packed with attractions and if you were to spend any less than 3 days in a big city you’ll be rushing too much. However, if you want by all means to include another city, you can try Milan. You can just concentrate on visiting the Duomo and the area around it and that would be enough for one day. Hope this helps.

October 1, 2018 at 10:41 am

My family has a two week planned trip to Europe and I am having difficulty picking a third location to visit in addition to London & Paris. I am glad I came across your website which is full of good ideas. I could use some help picking a third city and places to stay. One of my challenges for the trip is traveling around Christmas which I understand the trains close.

Some of the other questions I have are: How long is it recommended to be at an airport before a flight between cities like London & Amsterdam? Is taking a train recommended even though it takes twice as long.

Where are the best areas to stay in London, Paris, Amsterdam and Ghent? We would like to rent an apartment in each city.

We arrive at 6:15am on 12/21 in Gatwick and leave on 1/3 in the evening out of Heathrow. What might be the best itinirary taking into account Christmas and New Years?

Thanks, Michael

October 3, 2018 at 10:24 am

Hi Michael, I’m afraid I can’t make any specific recommendation in any of these cities. We usually stay in Airbnb apartments when we don’t stay with friends or relatives in Europe.

Rob+Ann @TravelLatte(.net)

July 27, 2018 at 4:36 pm

You are so right, Anda – Two weeks in Europe will fly by! We love your itinerary ideas though. Two weeks is such a short time for so many great places to see and enjoy, but these really help make the most of the time. Can’t wait to get back and explore more!

Jennifer Melroy

July 27, 2018 at 2:38 pm

I love exploring northern Europe. The cities have a charm that the rest of the continent lacks. I can’t explain it, but they do. I always feel like they are more welcoming as a city. Plus Stolkhom has the best museums to visit.

Suruchi Mittal

July 24, 2018 at 10:36 am

That is a complete exhaustive guide on Europe. I liked the way how you have divided the itinerary and it is going to be super helpful while we plan up our trip. The 2 weeks really seems like a less time now, for Europe.

Cynthia | Adventuring Woman

July 23, 2018 at 5:12 am

You’ve covered all the important things! I agree that Paris, Amsterdam and London should be #1. I really want to do Vienna, Prague and Budapest. Also the Balkan itineraries. So true that it’s best to spend time really experiencing a place, rather than running around between them.

July 22, 2018 at 12:27 am

These are good itineraries for those who want a quick glimpse of certain areas of Europe. Im not sure on the Nordic ones, I think I need a bank loan for that one. 😀 I found after exploring much of Europe, to see better history, buildings, parks, scenery etc, is to get away from the cities and find the true heart of each country. However, first timers, these are good plans BUT make sure you come back for some more European fun 🙂

July 22, 2018 at 10:58 am

One visit to Europe is never enough, Dabik.

July 21, 2018 at 11:55 pm

Although I agree with you to start with the more popular cities in your first ever trip to Europe and to make sure that all the cities you’re visiting are geographically close to each other (and you’ve grouped them out perfectly), I also think that visiting only the bigger cities in countries like Switzerland, Austria, Greece don’t give you a real flavour of what the country is about. For example- going to Athens and not Santorini would be something I’d not recommend at all! Or going to Zurich and Lucerne but not Interlaken. Having said that, if one wants to focus only on the bigger cities and not venture to the smaller towns and villages, then these itineraries make perfect sense!

July 22, 2018 at 11:00 am

Of course, Medha. Visiting only the bigger cities will barely touch the tip of the iceberg, so to speak. These itineraries are intended for first time visitors to Europe and it is implied the subsequent visits would be necessary to really get the feel of many of these countries.

Christina Pfeiffer

July 21, 2018 at 11:09 pm

Your itineraries certainly highlight the diversity of Europe. There are so many different countries to visit it’s hard to choose! One of the things I love about Europe is that no matter where you go, there’s history, culture and cobblestone streets to discover. Hmm, I think I’m due for another trip to Europe soon!

July 21, 2018 at 11:35 pm

That is so true, Christina. I love everything about Europe!

July 21, 2018 at 9:35 pm

I am a big fan of itineraries! I have created several I want to follow. Sometimes, an itinerary does not work for one particular year but then it is feasible later. From your list, I want to do Northern Europe and the Berlin-Dresden-Wroclaw. I am with you on staying 3-4 days on a city. I do not like to rush places.

July 21, 2018 at 10:19 pm

Planning is part of the fun when you travel, isn’t it?

July 21, 2018 at 9:13 pm

I love your recommendations! I’d love to go and visit Europe one day and this guide will come in very handy. Indeed 2 weeks is such a short time to see the entire continent, but good to know that you can still see as much as long you plan well (especially considering the geographical location and transportation availability).

July 21, 2018 at 10:18 pm

I didn’t realize you haven’t been in Europe, Marvi. Hope you’ll get there soon. You’ll love Europe, I promise!

Jill Chapman

July 21, 2018 at 7:40 pm

I haven’t been to Europe for five years so I am very excited to be heading there this fall. Great tips – we’ve already used a few – booked hotels in the city center or air bnb’s and are traveling off-season a bit but I hope to utilize more when I’m there.

July 21, 2018 at 8:05 pm

I hope you are going to have a great trip, Jill.

July 21, 2018 at 5:31 am

Great idea’s, even for a European. We need to discover more things close to home.

July 21, 2018 at 8:06 pm

Well, if you live in Europe you probably have visited all these places, Wendy.

Lyn aka The Travelling Lindfields

July 21, 2018 at 4:09 am

What a useful post. I think those of us who travel frequently forget that there is a lot of basic stuff we just take for granted.

July 21, 2018 at 10:00 pm

So true, Lyn.

July 21, 2018 at 12:45 am

I have spent quite a bit of time in Europe but I still have so much to see. I would love to do your Balkans roadtrip, I haven’t been to that area yet.

July 21, 2018 at 10:01 pm

The Balkans make one of the best European itineraries, Anisa. You should definitely do that road trip.

July 20, 2018 at 6:27 pm

These are all great ideas. Isn’t it such a gift to be able to spend two weeks exploring?? We love to spend 3 days in cities so we know where we want to return… I also love to pair big cities with smaller towns, too. It’s a great to experience both sides of the coin in the same country. I would love to do your Balkan itinerary! Those places all just look beautiful!

July 21, 2018 at 10:05 pm

I love exploring smaller cities too, Sara. However, for first time visitors it’s always better to start with the more popular sites.

July 20, 2018 at 5:02 pm

Great tips for first-time visitors, especially if you have only two weeks. I wish I’ve been to all the destinations you covered … if we could only travel when I was still living in the middle of it ;).

July 21, 2018 at 10:06 pm

Yep, I hear you! I have the same frustration, Emese.

July 20, 2018 at 4:17 pm

Great advice for first time travelers! We did a similar trip, to your first itinerary, when we went to Europe the first time. Ours was London, Paris, Munich, and Amsterdam. I have to agree that giving yourself 3-4 days in each place is ideal. I ended up feeling like I didn’t see much in London, because we were only there for two days of our trip. Thankfully, we were able to return to London for a longer period later.

Tomas Novak

July 20, 2018 at 1:31 pm

As I live in Prague – kind of a center of Europe. It’s pretty easy for me to do this short trips and I think I visited more than half of this cities. I like how you group them in smaller trips by three. I just have to visit the Baltic states and Balkan… hopefully next year. Thanks for your tips

July 21, 2018 at 10:12 pm

It’s much easier to do these trips when you live in Europe, Thomas. The challenge is for people who travel there from far away.

California Globetrotter

July 20, 2018 at 1:11 pm

What a great itinerary you’ve put together, Anda! You’ve hit up all the best cities and I also recommend 3-4 days in each city!

July 21, 2018 at 10:13 pm

I’m glad you agree with me, Lolo. Now that you live in Europe it’s much easier for you to see all these other smaller cities on week-end trips.

Rhonda Albom

July 20, 2018 at 12:51 pm

I think two weeks is a great intro and taster for Europe. Europe is addictive and by the end of those two weeks you’ll already be planning on which areas you want to concentrate on for your next visit. I agree that you should spend three to four days in each city in order to get comfortable and enjoy the feel of the city.

July 21, 2018 at 10:17 pm

Hahaha, you are so right that traveling to Europe becomes addictive. Everybody I know wants to return there to see more.

Priscilla Willis

July 20, 2018 at 6:23 am

Great tips, Anda. Your suggested Itineraries are perfect – it’s difficult to fully experience a destination when you try to do and see too much!

July 20, 2018 at 9:52 am

Good to hear from you, Priscilla. I know you just came back from a trip to Europe. Hope it was fun.

July 20, 2018 at 9:53 am

Good to hear from you, Priscilla. I know you just came back from Europe. Hope you enjoyed your trip.

March 28, 2020 at 11:11 pm

Anda looking for a 14 day itinerary first time in Europe. This is for my 25 Anniversary. Looking to bring my 3 daughters ages 25/22/20. Also looking to invite my in laws 65/72. My wife is first generation born in the states from Hungary. My 72 year old father in-law has a bad ankle is there scooters to rent or would it be a pain in the butt to travel everywhere with it. Also ball Parker cost per person along with either plane or rail tickets to hop around

March 28, 2020 at 11:41 pm

This looks like a multi-generational reunion and a great celebration. Since your wife is of Hungarian descent, you might want to take a trip to Central Europe that would include Hungary as well. I think all of you are going to love Budapest! You could probably do Prague, Vienna, and Budapest and spend at least 3 days in each of these big cities. There are also a few side trips that you can take around them. I wrote extensively about these three destinations, in case you need some ideas on things to do, places to stay and eat in each one of these cities.

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trip ideas to europe

See Europe as the Europeans do this summer with these pro tips | Cruising Altitude

trip ideas to europe

Americans are heading to Europe for vacation as much as ever these days, and that means the typical tourist spots like Venice, Paris and London are sure to be crowded this year. But, because this is Cruising Altitude, we’ll look at the aviation angle first.

First and foremost: If you’re really determined to go to Europe this summer and haven’t booked yet, stop reading now and get on it. 

“I’ve never seen a year like this … We’re at the point where there’s no more availability,” Brigitte Armand, president of Eurobound , a tour organizer that specializes in European packages, told me. “Book as quickly as possible.” 

How to get around

According to Armand, trains are generally a great way to get from place to place within Europe, but for farther-flung stops, the continent’s network of low-cost airlines offers travelers a reliable alternative.

Learn more: Best travel insurance

“Don’t think of one airline as being your network and entry point within Europe,” Laura Lindsay, public relations director at online booking platform Skyscanner told me.

She said if you’re flying to Europe from the U.S., you may well rely on a large network carrier like British Airways, KLM, or Lufthansa to get across the Atlantic and then book your intra-European flights separately.

“You’re suddenly opening up Europe in a different way if you search for different airports and multiple airlines,” Lindsay said. “It’s pretty straightforward to get around, so don’t feel put off by jumping through a few different countries or trying a few different destinations.” 

Tips for European airlines

According to Lindsay, European low-cost carriers like Ryanair, Easyjet and Wizz Air often have stricter baggage policies like American ULCCs Spirit and Frontier.

“(The) top tip would be always make sure you understand the luggage allowance that is part of your ticket,” she said. “More often than not, don’t book the basic fare without checking.”

It’s also a good idea to be flexible with your airports and dates of travel if you want to get the best deals on those shorter flights.

“You’ll get a number of places that have more than one airport,” Lindsay said, noting that Skyscanner has a tool that allows travelers to search for flights to or from nearby airports when choosing a destination. “Just getting a map out and actually looking at where exactly you want to travel and where the nearby airports are.” 

Armand added that if you take the train instead, you may need to secure a reservation in advance, particularly for some of the more tourist-heavy routes like panoramic trains in Switzerland. 

Last week's Cruising Altitude: There was no Golden Age of flying. We're in it now.

Where to go

If you really want to summer like a European, you should consider places a little more off the radar for most Americans.

“Albania is somewhere that broke through a couple of years ago as somewhere that people recognized as offering a huge value for money,” Lindsay said. “Sarajevo is reporting its busiest April on record for travelers.”

Armand said it can also be a good idea to try different parts of countries that are already popular if you want a more authentic, less crowded experience.

“We recently arranged a whole trip for some clients in the Abruzzo region of Italy,” she said. “The Abruzzo region, it’s on the Adriatic, people don’t know this region, and I think this is the first time ever we put together a package to get to that region.” 

Data from Skyscanner shows that some destinations in Europe are picking up in popularity with travelers on the continent. Here are some trends bubbling up year over year from 2023 to 2024:

◾ Ljubljana, Slovenia, saw a 188% increase in searches from Spanish travelers

◾ Tromso, Norway, saw a 130% increase in interest from Italian holidaymakers

◾ Dusseldorf, Germany, had a 122% spike in interest from Brits

According to Armand, the best last-minute availability seems to be in Eastern Europe, like Bulgaria and Poland.

“There are some good deals there perhaps, even the Czech Republic I’m finding some decent space,” she said.

So go on, get packing.

Zach Wichter is a travel reporter for USA TODAY based in New York. You can reach him at [email protected].

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15 Best Places for a Girls' Trip in Europe

Evie Carrick is a writer and editor who’s lived in five countries and visited well over 50. She now splits her time between Colorado and Paris, ensuring she doesn't have to live without skiing or L'As du Fallafel.

trip ideas to europe

Editor's Note: Travel might be complicated right now, but use our inspirational trip ideas to plan ahead for your next bucket list adventure.

When you're young, drifting apart from your camp friends or college roommate seems impossible, but the older we get, the harder it is to maintain those friendships.

According to research at Michigan State University in 2017, as we get older, "friendships are actually a stronger predictor of health and happiness than relationships with family members." That means, maintaining your bond with high school friends or a previous work pal may noticeably impact your day-to-day happiness and how long you live. While a phone call or coffee date is a great way to accomplish that, there's nothing like travel to revive a friendship that's been on the back burner for far too long.

And when it comes to spending a week (or more) reconnecting with people you love, Europe is hard to beat. Not only is it relatively easy to reach, but there's something for everyone — from a spa vacation in Switzerland to Barcelona's perfect mix of food, dancing, and architecture. To get you started, we've curated a list of European cities and destinations guaranteed to shake you out of your daily routine and revamp your most important friendships.

Paris, France

Don't let the city of love's reputation for romance deter you. Thanks to their strong appreciation for wine, delicious food, and culture, sisterly love is just as likely to flourish in Paris.

If your group is into art, skip the lines at the Louvre (or be smart about when you go ) and head to the Centre Pompidou to experience the first European collection of modern and contemporary art. If museums aren't your thing, experience the work of great artists (think: Gustav Klimt and Vincent van Gogh) at Atelier des Lumières , an immersive digital art exhibition where the works of great artists are projected on the walls of a giant hall.

When night falls, watch the Eiffel Tower light up from an evening boat cruise on the Seine River with Bateaux Parisiens , or get apéritifs at Maison Sauvage , a beautiful, flower-covered cafe, before heading to Le Champo , an arthouse cinema that shows old classics.

Stockholm, Sweden

Ivey Redding/Travel + Leisure

This Nordic city is all about food — and tempting cocktail menus. It's all too easy to pass your days restaurant and bar hopping (no judgement), but make sure your culinary journey leads you through Gamla Stan, the city's Old Town where you'll find Instagram-worthy cobblestone streets and ochre-colored buildings.

Stockholm encompasses 14 islands and has a strong connection to (and reliance on) the water. To experience life on the archipelago , take a day trip to the tiny island of Fjäderholmarna, a 20-minute boat ride from Stockholm, and spend the day laying in the sun, swimming, and picnicking.

For food, don't miss Schmaltz Bar & Delicatessen or pizza at 800 Grader . And when it comes to a fancy girls' night out, it's hard to beat Vina for wine and starters, followed by Adria , an Italian restaurant that serves up bowls of warm, homemade pasta. Top it all off with a nightcap at Erlands Cocktail Bar .

Bad Ragaz, Switzerland

If you're looking to reset and relax, it's hard to beat a week in the resort town of Bad Ragaz, Switzerland. Just an hour southeast of Zurich, this area is home to a famous natural spring as well as a world-renowned spa and health resort .

Billing itself as the "leading well-being and medical health resort in Europe," the Grand Resort Bad Ragaz boasts extensive thermal baths, including outdoor pools with mountain views, and a "Sauna World" that features a sanarium, a Finnish sauna, and an infrared sauna. For next-level treatments, the on-site Medical Center has a highly trained team of doctors and therapists who use the thermal water for various therapies, including dermatological and beauty treatments.

When you've had enough pampering, the resort's eight restaurants and four bars will keep you entertained, as will the on-site casino and two golf courses. For a day trip , go on a tour of the region's vineyards and wineries or explore quaint Swiss villages by bike.

Barcelona, Spain

There's more to Barcelona than drinking endless cava (sparkling wine) and dancing until 5 a.m., but no one's going to judge you those are the main items on your agenda. Grab a late dinner of tapas and sangria at Sensi Bistro in the historic Gothic Quarter, then dance the night away at Jamboree or Razzmatazz .

After you've had a chance to recover — we recommend coffee at Cafés El Magnífico — spend some time exploring the city. Walk along the outdoor pedestrian thoroughfare, La Rambla, until you run into La Boqueria, a giant outdoor food market. Grab some lunch goodies and post up at the beach, Playa de la Barceloneta. For a taste of culture, map out an Antoni Gaudí-inspired city tour. Stop by what is arguably his greatest piece of architectural work, La Sagrada Familia , before swinging by Park Güell to see numerous Gaudí installations and city views.

T+L Backpack Quiz

Prague, czech republic.

With its cobblestone streets, castles, and bridges, in Prague, you'll feel like you've stepped into medieval times. Spend the day imagining yourselves as medieval queens at Prague Castle , then head to Old Town Square. Here, in the heart of the city, you'll be surrounded by Gothic churches, colorful baroque-style structures, and a one-of-a-kind astronomical clock that delivers an animated show every hour. End the day with a walk across the Charles Bridge, pausing to listen to street musicians and shopping for trinkets.

After you've gotten your fill of history, shift your focus to the current Czech culture, which almost always includes a stein of beer. Head to the 17th-century Strahov Monastery Brewery and enjoy a beer (or three) in the outdoor courtyard. Soak it up with roasted sausages in a dark beer sauce or try their traditional goulash with Czech dumplings.

Monaco City, Monaco

It doesn't get more glam than Monaco, a tiny country perched on the French Riviera. Day trips to the neighboring countries of France and Italy require little more than a short drive, but once you're settled in Monaco , you may not want to leave — there's a reason the rich and famous flock here.

With views out over the Mediterranean Sea, the Fairmont Monte Carlo makes for a solid home base. Enjoy the property's four restaurants and bars, and lounge like queens around the rooftop pool. From April to September, the brand Nikki Beach sets up on the rooftop, bringing with it specialty cocktails and gourmet food by day, and a DJ-spun party by night. After a cocktail or two, try your luck at the on-site Sun Casino.

After you've taken ample time to explore the property, sunbathe at Larvotto Beach and visit the Princess Grace Rose Garden , a garden built in memory of the American film star Grace Kelly who was married to the former prince of Monaco. For some more gambling fun, spend an evening at the Casino de Monte-Carlo , easily one of the most famous casinos in the world.

Biarritz, France

For a low-key beach escape with your best girls, head to this tiny coastal town on southwestern France's Basque coast. Initially a destination for European royalty, today, the seaside town is popular with surfers and beachgoers who come for the slower pace of life and sweeping views of the Bay of Biscay.

Start your day by shopping at Les Sandales d'Eugénie , a family-run business famous for their French-made espadrilles. Then, take a leisurely walk to Rocher de la Vierge, a rock formation topped with a Virgin Mary statue that's only reachable via a narrow iron bridge. From there, follow the seaside path along the Grande Plage (where you'll need to return for a beach day) to the Phare de Biarritz, an iconic white lighthouse to the north. After your walk, feast on tapas and wine at Olatua Biarritz and watch the sun drop.

For a lazy day, pick up fresh cheese, bread, meats, and veggies from Marché de Biarritz and head to the tiny Plage du Port Vieux for swimming and sun.

London, England

London is the perfect place for first-timers to Europe, especially those with a penchant for the royal family. You can ooh and ahh over Buckingham Palace , get a group selfie with the Queen's Guard, and see Big Ben without having to stress about a language barrier.

Hop on a double-decker bus and visit Piccadilly Circus, London's take on Times Square, or take the Tube to Euston Station and test out the Indian buffet at Chutney's on Drummond Street. For lodging, not much can top the luxury and history of The Savoy . It's the hotel where Elizabeth Taylor spent her honeymoon, Sir Elton John flooded his suite, and The Beatles ordered porridge and pea sandwiches while visiting Bob Dylan.

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Michela Sieman/Travel + Leisure

Loving Amsterdam is practically inevitable. The elaborate canal system is lined with quaint, narrow houses, while romantic bridges and bike lanes crisscross the city. Join the Dutch and explore the city on two wheels or stop by Joy Ride Tours and arrange a biking excursion into the countryside.

For a healthy dose of culture, spend an afternoon at the Anne Frank House , then taste your way through the Amsterdam Cheese Museum . The city's rich Museum Quarter houses the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijksmuseum , where you'll find works by Rembrandt and Vermeer.

After a long day, grab a stroopwafel — a crispy waffle cracker with a soft caramel filling — at Van Wonderen and a cocktail at Door 74, a Prohibition era-style bar. Finally, get some rest at the trendy, design-focused INK Hotel Amsterdam in the center of the city, or book a block of rooms on the canal at the bohemian, boutique hotel, Ecomama .

Berlin, Germany

Berlin houses much of Europe's history — from the renowned Holocaust Memorial to the Berlin Wall, there's plenty to do and see. Take in the city's storied history, but make time to enjoy the fun-loving side of Berlin, too. It's Germany, so there's plenty of beer to be had, and quirky spots like Café Cinema — an alley full of art, bikes, and revelers — will win you over in minutes.

For food, try a Mrs. Benedict at Hilde , or go all out with the Sunday brunch buffet at Nola's in Weinbergspark. If your group is in the mood for Italian, swing by I Due Forni for caprese salad, pizza, and beer, or MarienBurgerie for burgers with a creative spin.

In addition to the Berlin Wall tours, check out the city's Alternative Culture and Street Art Tour , where you'll learn about street art, Berlin's underground culture, and its world-famous club scene. Finish the day with drinks and dancing at Clärchens Ballhaus .

Santorini, Greece

Monica Farber/Travel + Leisure

When you think of Greece, you likely picture-perfect whitewashed houses with blue roofs overlooking turquoise waters. If that's what you've been dreaming of, get the girls together and book a flight to Santorini. You can spend days looking out over the sea, as well as pack in some activities and fun.

Check out the Santorini caldera, a large, picture-perfect volcanic crater, and snap a group photo on top of the Mesa Vouno Mountain where you can see the ancient remains of the city of Thera.

Book your stay at The Tsitouras Collection , a boutique hotel housed in an 18th-century mansion, or indulge in VIP treatment at Grace Hotel Santorini, Auberge Resorts Collection . For the ultimate sunset views, gather the girls and head to the family-owned PK Cocktail Bar , then go dancing at the always-fun Koo Club .

Rome, Italy

A true bucket-list destination, Rome will welcome you and your crew with an endless list of things to see, do, and eat. You won't want to leave without visiting the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, or the Colosseum, but make sure you set aside time for plenty of wining and dining, too.

Grab a morning cappuccino at Barnum Café or pick up baked goods at Antico Forno Roscioli . If you don't make it to the latter for breakfast, you can always swing by for a slice of Roman-style pizza at lunch. The piazza Campo de' Fiori is a bustling outdoor fruit, veggie, and flower market in the morning and afternoon, and it transitions into a nightlife hub after dark (it's lined with bars and restaurants).

At night, sleep steps away from the Trevi Fountain and Villa Medici at the completely renovated, five-star Sofitel Rome Villa Borghese .

Hvar, Croatia

There are thousands of islands off Croatia's coastline, but Hvar is developed enough to be comfortable without compromising on natural beauty. Perched in the Mediterranean Sea, the island has every ingredient needed for a girls' trip: beaches, nightlife, and vineyards.

Spend the day lounging on Dubovica Beach or head inland to see the island's lavender fields. Try gregada , a local fishermen's stew, at Macondo or peruse the wine list at Passarola , where there's often live music. Once you've properly explored Hvar — don't miss a wine tasting at Vina Tomić — book a boat excursion to the Pakleni Islands off the coast of Hvar to experience the island chain's secluded beaches and coves.

Dublin, Ireland

Gather your best beer-drinking buds and head to the birthplace of Guinness. And while the capital of Ireland offers much more than the dark Irish stout, you'll want to carve out time to visit the Guinness Storehouse , where you'll hear the story behind Ireland's famous beer and enjoy a brew at the rooftop bar.

After you've had your fill of beer — if that's even possible — visit Dublin Castle and the imposing St. Patrick's Cathedral , the tallest and largest church in Ireland. For an experience not every tourist gets, book the Dublin Dark Side Tour, an evening walk that guides you through the city's supernatural and terrestrial ghouls. Create your own pub crawl — stops at The Temple Bar , The Long Hall , and The Beer Market are a must — or sign up for the Dublin Literary Pub Crawl or the quirky Dublin Traditional Irish Musical Pub Crawl .

Brussels, Belgium

The city of Brussels is home to beautiful parks — Bois de la Cambre and the Parc du Cinquantenaire among them — but the real reason to make this European city your girls' trip destination is the food. In addition to being the birthplace of Belgian waffles, the Belgians know how to make some killer frites (French fries) and have perfected the moules marinières (mussels).

After a few cocktails at Le Belgica , a popular gay bar with a creative drink menu, you'll naturally want some late-night grub. Enter: Friterie de la Barrière , a popular fry shop that you can count on to be open until 5 a.m. (and sometimes later). After a hangover-killing breakfast at Peck 47, spend the day shopping for luxury brands on Avenue Louise. Just make sure you don't miss the smaller boutiques and cafés hidden down some of the avenue's side streets.

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trip ideas to europe

10 Best Road Trips in Europe [2024 Europe Road Trips Guide]

F act: road trip destinations don’t get much better than Europe. From the winding alpine roads of Switzerland and France to the spectacular coastal routes in Italy and Ireland, there are more incredible road trips in Europe than you can shake a stick at!

Furthermore, there are road trips for all occasions and interests. The best road trips in Europe take you through wine country, around lakes, into ancient towns, and up sweeping mountain passes. Truly, whether you have an afternoon or an entire month available, if you’re looking for an epic adventure, a cultural experience, or a simple break from the city, there’s a European road trip that’s up to the task.

The tricky part’s deciding which one to do first! To help, we’re going to reveal 10 of the best Europe road trips available – whether you go in a car, a campervan , or on a motorbike. Let’s dive in.

The Best Road Trips in Europe

Wild atlantic way in ireland.

The Wild Atlantic Way is an epic road trip that runs 1600 miles (2600km) along the west coast of Ireland. One of the world’s longest-defined coastal routes, it starts from Derry in the north and ends at the pretty town of Kinsale, County Cork, in the south.

Wild in both name and nature, driving the entire distance will reveal the very best of Ireland’s rugged, ancient, and weather-beaten coastline. You’ll pass through stunning countryside and picturesque villages, bearing witness to historic monuments, towering cliffs, and legendary landscapes at every turn.

A few highlights of the route include:

  • The magical Cliffs of Moher
  • Slieve League (a mountain in Country Donegal whose name in Irish means “mountain of stone pillars”)
  • The lively and historic town of Galway, and
  • The Ring of Kerry (another famous European road trip)

North Coast 500 in Scotland

The North Coast 500 (NC500) is Scotland’s answer to Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way. Widely regarded as the best road trip in Scotland, it brings together 500+ miles of the country’s most impressive scenery, sights, and attractions.

Passing through the notorious Highlands, your mind will boggle at the remote and unblemished beauty on display. Quaint fishing villages, sugar-soft white sand beaches, age-old lochs, rugged mountains, and sites of historical significance are just a few of the hidden gems you can expect to encounter.

Starting and finishing in Inverness – the UK’s northernmost city – you hug the coast of Scotland along a series of existing roads that form a loop around the top of the country. This road trip was actually only established in 2014 but quickly became popular among locals and visitors alike. A few highlights of the route include:

  • The huge Smoo Cave, which was formed by both sea and rainwater (making it unique in the UK)
  • The ruins of Ardvreck Castle at Loch Assynt
  • The wildlife (especially the infamous highland deer!)
  • The mile-long Corrieshallock Gorge, complete with a Victorian suspension bridge that crosses it

Check out our guide to things to do in Edinburgh, Scotland .

Atlantic Road in Norway

Often referred to as one of the most beautiful drives on the planet, the Atlantic Road in Norway is a real sight to behold. A unique route and remarkable feat of engineering, the road connects Averoy with the mainland, snaking out over the ocean in a series of small islands and bridges.

Proof that the best road trips in Europe aren’t always the longest, the Atlantic Road itself is only 5 miles (8km) long. Officially, it runs from Karvag to Vevang. However, it forms one section of a longer National Tourist Route between Bud and Kristiansund – the entirety of which is worth driving.

A phenomenal road trip, it’ll be a struggle to keep your eyes on the road as you gaze at the coastal scenery – views that chop and change depending on the weather conditions you happen to experience at the time.

Explore more of Norway! Here are the best things to do in Oslo , family-friendly things to do in Bergen , and our guide to exploring Norway’s fjords .

Almafi Coast in Italy

The Amalfi Coast is one of Italy’s most popular travel destinations. And for a good reason! This 30-mile (50km) stretch of coastline is unlike any other on the planet.

Colorful old villages sit atop sheer cliffs, with cerulean waters below reflecting the blue skies and blazing sun above . Beautiful beaches and hikes litter the area, matched only by the mass of restaurants, bars, shopping opportunities…and tourists!

Trust us, a road trip along this inimitable coastline is hard to beat. Driving down the Amalfi Coast road, otherwise known as the SS163, will leave you speechless.

A staggering stretch of tarmac, it hugs the cliffs and winds through pristine, pastel-colored towns – starting in Sorrento and heading south past Positano, Amalfi, Ravello, and Vietri sul Mare. Take it slow, stop to explore each town, and fall in love with the aptly-named Divina Costiera (AKA the Divine Coast).

Arctic Coast Way in Iceland

You’ll find another of the best road trips in Europe in Iceland. One of the most picturesque countries on earth, it’s full of incredible sights and natural wonders – as well as infamous driving routes that take you past some of its most iconic attractions.

Chief among Iceland’s famous road trips is the Arctic Coast Way. This epic, 560-mile (900km) journey runs along the country’s northern coast, encompassing six peninsulas and just as many islands. The whole route takes anywhere from 3 to 12 days to drive, and a 4×4 is recommended for the trip.

This is nature at its finest, and you’ll pass a huge array of unforgettable attractions. Indeed, it’d require an entire article to provide a complete list of Arctic Coast highlights! To keep things short, here are a select few items to add to your Iceland road trip itinerary:

  • The Hofsos swimming pool, with its mindblowing views over the ocean
  • The Hofsos basalt columns that rival the Giant’s Causeway in Ireland
  • Humpback whale watching
  • The geothermal sea baths at Husavik
  • The Arctic Henge in Raufarhofn

Transfagarasan Highway in Romania

Welcome to what’s arguably Romania’s best-known road – not to mention one of its most popular tourist attractions.

Over 93 miles (150km) in length and with countless twists and turns, the Transfagarasan Highway looks like it was built solely to please road trippers! Expect switchback after switchback through a stunning landscape , leading up to an impressive high point of 6500 feet and exceptional views over the surrounding area.

The road cuts a striking sight – especially from above. Another amazing feat of engineering, it winds back and forth up a beautiful natural gorge, passes through tunnels, and crosses the Vidraru Dam (offering a fantastic look at the eponymous lake in the process).

Be sure to take your time and stop at the viewing points as you go. This is partly to stay safe on the ascent! But, with so much beauty on display, it’s mainly so you can make the most of the Transfagarasan Highway’s unbelievable scenery.

Ready to explore the Romanian capitol? Here are 10 great activities in Bucharest, Romania to enjoy with kids .

Route Napoleon in France

Route Napoleon isn’t just one of the best road trips in Europe. It’s also one of the most famous.

Following an escape route that Napoleon Bonaparte took in the early 19 th Century, the journey takes you 200 miles (325km) from the coastal town of Golfe-Juan, in the French Riviera, all the way north to the city of Grenoble.

The route’s as scenic as it is historic, too, passing a wide range and ever-changing landscapes from sweet-smelling lavender fields and pine forests to rolling hills, rocky outcrops, gorges, and mountains. Get ready for stunning vistas and equally impressive roads at every turn.

Trekaroo Tip: You can stick with tradition and attempt this Europe road trip in the same direction as Napoleon (from south to north). Yet many people choose to do it from north to south instead. That way, you can enjoy sweeping views of the Mediterranean Sea when you approach the French Riviera at the end.

Romantic Road in Germany

Romantic in both name and nature, this wonderful road trip is one of the very best in Germany. The Romantische Straße , as it’s called there, is 285 miles (460km) long and takes you through a slew of charming towns and jaw-dropping countryside, complete with ancient castles that look like something straight out of a Disney movie!

As for how long this road trip takes, consider giving yourself between three and four days to go from the start, in Wurzburg, until the end in Fussen. To prolong your German adventure, we recommend spending another couple of days in Munich afterward. Located just over 1.5 hours away from Fussen, the Capital of Bavaria is a popular travel destination in its own right.

Oberalp Pass in Switzerland

Searching for another iconic European road to drive down? Look no further than Oberalp Pass (AKA Route 19) in Switzerland.

Located at over 6,719 feet (2,048m) above sea level, this high mountain pass in the Swiss Alps connects the Graubunden and Uri cantons. However, all you really need to know is that it’s utterly phenomenal! Just under 20 miles long, the pass runs from Disentis to Andermatt and provides unbelievable views of the surrounding mountains at every twist and turn in the road.

Steep and riddled with switchbacks, the pass is magnificent. Take note, though: Oberalp Pass is usually impassable between the end of October through April (although the final dates depend on how much snow and meltwater are present).

Read our full guide to visiting Switzerland with kids .

Glossglockner High Alpine Road in Austria

Last but not least on this list of the best road trips in Europe is the Glossglockner High Alpine Road in Austria – the highest paved mountain road in the country.

Popular with cyclists and sports car enthusiasts alike, this memorable toll route climbs up to an almighty 8215 feet (2504m) above sea level in a mere 30 miles (48km), with no fewer than 36 hairpin bends along the way. It runs from Fusch-Furleiten in Salzburg to Heiligenblut in Carinthia, taking you into the stunning Hohe Tauern National Park in the process.

Once again, this European road trip isn’t available all year round. It’s usually open from the start of May until the end of October, although inclement weather conditions can restrict access to the road at any time of year.

As you can tell, thanks to its countless scenic roads and awe-inspiring landscapes, this diverse continent across the pond is a haven for anyone with a penchant for road trips. In fact, there are so many routes available that picking one can feel impossible!

With any luck, the options in this post will have given you some useful inspiration for which European road trip to do first. From the stunning Swiss Alps to the rugged coastline of Ireland, any of them is sure to leave you with unforgettable memories.

Danny Newman is a digital nomad and freelance writer with a deep passion for travel. He’s also mad about #vanlife and offers fellow enthusiasts wide-ranging advice and inspiration on the topic over at campervantips.com .

The best road trips in Europe are brimming with mountain ranges, river valleys, coastal oases, and iconic cultural landmarks. Here are are top picks.

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  6. 5 Best Places in Europe Travel VideoTouriphy

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  1. 10 Days in Europe: 25+ Epic Itineraries + Budget Trips

    🏟 Day 1-3: Rome, Italy. Start your 10 day Europe trip in the ancient capital of Italy. Rome is home to endless historical monuments, artsy squares, and scenic lookouts. Learn about the gladiators' world at the majestic Colosseum and admire world-famous art in Vatican City, where the Pope resides.. As touristy as it is, tossing a coin into the Trevi Fountain is a must.

  2. 10 Days in Europe: 25 Magical Itineraries for Your 10-Day Europe Trip

    Check out our one-week Europe trip itinerary ideas! Paris-Brussels-Amsterdam. A trio of lively cities make for this fabulous 10-day trip to Europe. From the canals of Amsterdam to the cafes of Paris, this trip allows you to explore history and architecture, famous landmarks, and great food and drink. ...

  3. 20 One-Week Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas

    20 European Vacation Ideas for Your Europe Trip. These are my best one week vacations in Europe. Taking a multi city European vacation can be a great way to experience several different cultures on one continent. I know that one week in Europe isn't a lot of time, so I've picked cities that are either close in proximity or a quick and cheap ...

  4. Best Places to Visit in Europe for 2023-2024

    Santorini. #13 in Best Places to Visit in Europe for 2023-2024. Visit this Greek island for its unique volcanic landscape, relaxing beaches and distinct architecture. Enjoy stunning views of the ...

  5. The Ultimate Europe Bucket List: 75 Fun Things to Do in Europe

    Some of our favorite bucket list European road trips so far have been in Tuscany, Provence, Sicily, Ireland, Southern Spain, and Croatia -but there are many more to come in the future. A Norway road trip in the summer, a Transylvania road trip, and a Scottish Highlands road trip are all at the top of our wish list!

  6. 2 Weeks in Europe

    Days 12 - 14: Rome. Your next stop in Italy, and the last stop on your Europe itinerary, is the Italian capital of Rome. Founded almost 3,000 years ago, Rome is absolutely stuffed full of historical wonders and attractions. We think that to do Rome justice, you should spend three days here.

  7. 40+ One Week Itineraries for Europe You'll Want to Steal ASAP

    Here is how to spend one week in Liguria: Day 1: Arrive in Genoa, Overnight in Genoa. Day 2: Explore Genoa, Overnight in Genoa. Day 3: Day Trip to Portofonio or Camogli, Overnight in Genoa. Day 4: Take the train to Manarola, Overnight in Manarola. Day 5: Day Trip to Riomaggiore & Corniglia, Overnight in Manarola.

  8. 7 Days in Europe: 25 Exciting Itineraries for Your One Week Europe Trip

    This 7-day itinerary is a must-do in Europe for the rich history, culture, and food and drink. Bavaria is one of the most beautiful parts of Germany, and Salzburg one of the most visited destinations in Austria. A view of historic Munich. In Munich, try traditional Munich food like white sausage, pretzels and beer.

  9. 30 Days in Europe: Travel Tips & Itinerary Ideas

    Top tips for planning your itinerary. 1. Don't try to see everything. Rome wasn't built in a day. And Europe can't be seen in a month, but you can scratch more than the surface on a 30-day traveling budget. Whether you want to tick off the top sights or spend your time more leisurely and get to know the vibe of a city, research, and ...

  10. Your Europe itinerary: 10 routes to explore the continent

    2. France and Switzerland. Start in Paris(1), Europe's most elegant capital, then venture off to the châteaux and prime vineyards of the Loire Valley(2). Move south to beautiful Bordeaux(3), which boasts bustling city life and some of Europe's finest surfing beaches to boot.

  11. How to Plan an Epic 2 Week Europe Trip (+ Europe Itinerary Ideas!)

    Alpine Escape: Bavaria, Switzerland's Jungfrau Region, Milan, and Lake Como. If your dream Europe trip involves plenty of Alpine views with a side of cities, this is the itinerary for Europe in 2 weeks for you. Bavaria. Start your trip in Bavaria, the land of castles, beer, and outdoor delights.

  12. 55 Epic Road Trips in Europe (Itinerary Ideas + Tips!)

    15 Best France Road Trip Itinerary Ideas (+ Driving Tips!) Amboise is small enough to be walkable and has a scenic chateau that overlooks the town, and a great base for visiting the Loire Valley. From Amboise, you can visit famous chateaux like Chateau Chenonceau, Chambord, Villandry, and Usse.

  13. Travel Itineraries in Europe

    Trip ideas Train times Securing seats Before you travel Trains & ferries Get our Rail Planner app Plan your trip, get extra discounts, and show your Pass as you go. Our favorite spring routes ... Summer is a magical time to explore Europe's hidden gems. We compiled a list of our all-time favorite train routes to take during the warmer months.

  14. 35 Best Weekend Trips in Europe (Plus Where to Stay)

    6. Zakopane, Poland. Zakpoane is an incredible city to visit on a weekend getaway, particularly for those looking to explore Europe. From the stunning architecture of the old town, to the vibrant culture and lively nightlife, Zakpoane offers something truly special that you won't find in many other cities.

  15. 2 Weeks in Europe

    2 Weeks in Europe Itinerary: Paris, London, Amsterdam. You have excellent direct flights, trains, or bus connections between all three. There are overnight trains between Lisbon and Madrid that run daily, departing at 11:34 p.m. and arriving in Madrid at 8:40 a.m. Also, there are direct flights, trains, or busses from Madrid to Barcelona.

  16. Here's How to Plan Your Very First Trip to Europe, According ...

    Plan Your Trip Geographically. Make a list of all your must-hit places, then look at where they fall on a map — connect the dots, and you have your route. Maybe you start in Spain and work your ...

  17. 13 Affordable European Vacation Ideas

    Trip Ideas; Budget Travel; 13 Affordable Places to Visit in Europe — From Country Escapes to Stunning Cities. ... For a storybook-worthy vacation in Europe, head straight to Bavaria.

  18. How to Plan a Trip to Málaga, Spain

    Málaga, Spain is a sun-seeker's paradise. The city along the nation's southern coast is the sunniest place in Europe, getting more than 280 sunshine hours a month, which works out to more than ...

  19. Cruising Altitude's travel tips for Europe this summer

    Here are some trends bubbling up year over year from 2023 to 2024: Ljubljana, Slovenia, saw a 188% increase in searches from Spanish travelers. Tromso, Norway, saw a 130% increase in interest from ...

  20. 15 Best Places for a Girls' Trip in Europe

    For food, don't miss Schmaltz Bar & Delicatessen or pizza at 800 Grader. And when it comes to a fancy girls' night out, it's hard to beat Vina for wine and starters, followed by Adria, an Italian ...

  21. 10 Best Road Trips in Europe [2024 Europe Road Trips Guide]

    Here are are top picks.© Provided by Trekaroo. The Wild Atlantic Way is one of the best road trips in Europe© Provided by Trekaroo. Slieve League© Provided by Trekaroo. North Coast 500 is one ...