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Europe Travel Guide

You can spend an entire lifetime travelling through Europe, marvelling at the diversity of history culture, scenery and art. Like a child's lucky dip, you could put your hand into the region, pluck out any destination and be a winner. So, the question is, where do you begin?

How Much Time Do You Have?

This is the all-important question for European travel and will dictate how much time you want to spend getting to places, as opposed to exploring them. For short haul flight destinations of 2 or 3 hours, Europe is your proverbial oyster. All you need to do is pick one and hop on over for long weekends, when you find fantastic deals.

If you only have a week, consider choosing just 2 or 3 cities, in one country and exploring the surrounding areas. An example of this in Spain would be 3 days in Barcelona and 3 days in Madrid. This way, you could enjoy the cities as well as take day trips to surrounding attractions in the countryside, without spending too much time on trains, planes and buses.

In 3 or 4 weeks it's possible to visit perhaps 10 of Europe's 'top' destinations, without absolutely racing around the region, including Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Vienna,Berlin, Athens, Istanbul, Amsterdam, Budapest and Prague. If you have longer than that, you're a lucky traveller, so simply take your time and enjoy!

Where Do You Want To Go?

This can be the most overwhelming question with regard to European travel,however it helps to break it down into categories based on the activities you enjoy and the things you want to see.

History and Architecture

For history buffs, Europe is heaven on earth and you'd be hard pressed to go anywhere and not find historical gems. However, if you've never been, consider visiting Italy for The Coliseum, Pompeii and the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Scotland for Stonehenge, Spain for The Sagrada Familia, France for the Arc de Triumph and the Palace of Versailles and Greece for The Acropolis.

Adventure and Scenery

A wonderland for skiing, hiking, walking, water sports and every other adventure activity you can possibly imagine, Europe is bursting with options for adrenalin junkies and outdoor enthusiasts. Start off with The Dolomites in Italy for hiking, The Canary Islands for water sports, Mont Blanc in France for serious thrill-seeking,Northern Spain for walking trails and Switzerland for skiing.

Beaches and Relaxation

Secluded stretches of white-sand, exotic volcanic beaches, cocktails by the sea and crystal-clear, turquoise waters await sun-worshippers in Europe. The Canary Islands have something for everyone, Ibiza in the Balearic Islands is the place to go to party on the beach, Santorini in Greece is one of the most romantic destinations in the world and Turkey's coastline is perfect for families, relaxation and fun.

Food, Wine and Nightlife

You can live all your foodie dreams in Europe, with some of the top gastronomic destinations including Brussels in Belgium, Copenhagen in Denmark, Bologna in Italy, Lyon in France and Istanbul in Turkey. Night owls can party until the wee hours when visiting Madrid and Barcelona in Spain, Dublin in Ireland, Berlin in Germany,Prague in the Czech Republic and Budapest in Hungary.

Extra Tips For European Travel

  • Create a loose itinerary based on your budget and top destinations to visit,then search for the best flight and accommodation deals. Remember that travel between countries in Europe can be easy, as they're so close to each other, so you may be able to book a cheap deal in a wonderful place you hadn't considered and still tick off the top (but expensive) stops on your bucket list via a daytrip.
  • Pre-book entry to popular attractions before you go, to avoid long queues.
  • Though Europe is generally a very safe region to travel in, keep an extra-watchful eye on your valuables in large cities known for pickpockets and scam artists, such as Rome, Prague, Paris, Barcelona and Madrid.