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15 Best Places To Visit in Europe in Winter: Warmest Spots and Winter Wonderlands

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Updated: 8th January 2023

Travelling Europe in winter can mean many things; Christmas markets, New Year celebrations, Valentine’s Day escapes, chasing the winter sun, and, of course, snow and ski trips. Thus, choosing the best places to visit in Europe in winter will very much depend on what you’re seeking.

If you’re fed up with wrapping up, then it’s best to head south, where you’ll find the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter. If you’re chasing the aurora borealis or pistes, northern Europe is the place to be. If you’re seeking some culture, then time your winter travels with a carnival or event.

Of course, there’s also the bonus of heading to some of Europe’s most popular places in the winter and the off-season; fewer crowds and lower prices. It’s also easy to pair a couple of spots together thanks to Europe’s easy and quick overland connections. Just use an app like Omio to search and book trains and buses to plan your winter adventure.

Here are my picks of the best places to visit in Europe in winter, from the warmest destinations to winter wonderlands.

Madeira, Portugal

Best for sunny winter hikes and spring-time feels

Floating out in the Atlantic Ocean, the Portuguese island of Madeira is closer to Africa than its mainland. This climate creates one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter, with daytime temperatures throughout the season hovering around 20°C.

In reality, Madeira’s temperature stays pretty constant year-round, leading one of the most beautiful islands in the world to basically exsists in eternal spring. 

Dan in Madeira Quinta da Saraiva discount code
Relaxing with a local wine looking out on Madeira at Quinta da Saraiva

With sun-kissed days aplenty and flowers and verdant scenery a constant feature, it’s a great winter escape, with more reliable weather than Portugal’s second archipelago, The Azores.

It’s also a place that ticks many boxes. There are beaches, ranging from typically golden to dramatic and volcanic dark bays – neighbouring Porto Santo boasts a vast stretch of heavenly sands. Then there are the mountains, where lofty jagged peaks reach above the clouds. Linking it all together are the leavada hiking trails, following the island’s traditional irrigation system. In Funchal, the capital, museums, wine tasting, and aged-Architecture tell their own story. Madeira is legendary – and when it came time to return to my life in Lisbon after a winter month on the archipelago, you can bet I cried a tear or two. 

Ponta do Sol Madeira
Ponta do Sol, Madeira, one of the best places to visit in Europe

Sicily, Italy

Best for warmer winters, served with culture and off-season bargains

Italy’s ‘in the moment’ island – thanks to The White Lotus – is a surefire European winter destination, though it’s not just the sun that make’s Sicily worth visiting.

The largest island in the Mediterranean, Sicily doesn’t fail to entertain. From beautiful beaches, like Cefalu, to characterful cities, such as boisterous Palermo, you’ve got everything under the sun – often quite literally – here. 

As one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter, you can expect daytime temperatures to peak around 14°C in February. Still, showers can be common in the winter months, so don’t expect the weather to be like that of, say, the Canary Islands. 

Sicily's Valley of the Temples one of the best places to visit in Europe
Sicily’s Valley of the Temples

Luckily, there is plenty to entertain on a rainy day. From Byzantine churches to impressive Roman Villas with nearly perfectly-restored mosaics, the island’s rich culture is more than just a distraction from the beaches. Even the Valley of Temples, a strip of grand Greek architecture outside, is worth braving the showers for. Having just spent November rocking around Sicily’s four corners, it’s a big thumbs up from me.

Christmas lights and a church in Seiffen ore Mountains
The all-year-round Christmas village of Seiffen, Saxony

Dresden and Saxony, Germany

Best for winter wonderlands, traditions, and Christmas villages

Germany is renowned for its Christmas Markets, and the capital city of the Saxony region, Dresden, is no different. In fact, the city boasts eleven different themed Christmas markets.

Beyond the festivities, it also makes a great city break in general. The city is compact enough to explore on foot, and the grand Baroque architecture makes this a worthy rival to some of the other great cities in central Europe, but Dresden at Christmas is when the city truly shines.

However, what makes Saxony one of the best places to visit in Europe in winter is other places to visit in Saxony, Germany, and not just the uber-cool city of Leipzig. This is a land full of traditions – especially at Christmas – and it’s well worth hiring a car to experience them.

In the Ore Mountains, you’ll find the village of Seiffen – an almost year-round Christmasy Eden. Here, workshops create toys, candles, decorations and other festive-related items no matter the month. Come December, it feels like a proper snowy wonderland. Then you have the mountain town’s miner traditions. From deep underground carol concerts in decommissioned mines to parades and traditional feasts, a Christmas trip to Saxony goes far beyond the markets and glühwein.

The view of old town Bansko and the snowy mountains
The view of old town Bansko and the snowy mountains

Bansko, Bulgaria

Best for skiing or snowboarding without breaking the bank

Bansko in winter is an ideal place for Skiers of all abilities, whether you want to learn or just head off with groups of mates to hit the slopes.

What makes it one of the best ski places to visit in Europe in winter, though, is just how affordable it is. This is particularly ideal if you’re a first-timer and want to try the sport before shelling out a fortune to some fancy French resort.

With half-board chalet rooms coming in at around £300 and great value lessons, it really is one of the cheapest places to Ski in Europe during winter. Another bonus is the lift passes that can be arranged by the day for those not wanting to commit to an entire week skiing, and even non-skiers can use the chairs to reach the higher après-ski points. This also helps make it a good choice for a family holiday in Europe without breaking the bank.

Before the skiing, which takes place a 30-minute gondola ride from the resort town, you’ll find all you need with restaurants, bars, rental shops and other activities like ice skating. Bansko’s Old Town is beautiful, with traditional buildings, museums, and a small but stunning Orthodox church. You also have some hot springs nearby to explore, and after Bansko, you could head to the cultured city of Plovdiv to visit the ancient attractions crowd free.

The bottom of a run in Bansko Bulgaria

Read more:
Skiing in Bansko

Algarve west coast
The rugged and windswept west coast of the Algarve

The Algarve, Portugal

Best for off-season deals and (usually) sunny days

If your budget doesn’t stretch to a luxury island escape in far-flung lands, then you’ll be looking for your sun a little closer to home.

The Algarve, Portugal’s southernmost region, is one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter, and being the off-season, there are usually plenty of deals to be had. Especially if you consider some of the Algarve’s more unusual places stay in inland.

Renowned for its 300 days of annual sunshine, it isn’t a guaranteed sunshine destination, though it’s undoubtedly going to be much warmer than in England – in fact, I’m here writing now (January) and writing this on my balcony in a T-shirt.

Having lived here for quite a few years now, generally, I’ve found December to have pretty good days – Christmas is often outside – and then showers start coming a bit later in winter. That said, it’s unpredictable, so pack an umbrella and plan for some emergency Algarve rainy-day activities. Lisbon, Portugal’s capital, also makes for a good winter city break, with the weather usually just a little less warm than in the south.

The start of the torchlight procession in Edinburgh
The start of the torchlight procession in Edinburgh, one of the best places to visit in Europe

Edinburgh, Scotland

Best for Christmas and New Year’s Eve celebrations

Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, is a treat any time of year. What makes it one of the places to visit in Europe in winter, though, is the Scottish Hogmanay celebrations which take over the city.

Hogmanay is the Scottish word for the final day of the year, and boy, do they know how to party. This will be no big surprise for anyone who knows about Edinburgh’s 11 festivals throughout the year.

Over these days, huge concerts, a torch-baring parade, artistic events, firework displays, and even a chilly AF swim take place. The city is packed, the energy levels are high, and it’s an epic way to see in the New Year. The lead-up to Christmas is also great in Edinburgh. Whether you’re sipping mulled wine at the Christmas Markets, warming yourself by a pub fireplace, or escaping the rain in the city’s excellent museums, a winter trip to Edinburgh is a winner.  

Best winter destinations in Europe
Misty mornings at Venice Carnival

Venice, Italy

Best for off-season visits, carnival and Valentine’s Day getaways 

While it’s not one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter – you’ll need to head further south in Italy for a few more degrees – it is certainly one of the most romantic, making Venice a firm Valentine’s Day favourite.

But that’s not even the best reason to visit the canal-lined city during the second month of the year.

No, it’s Venice Carnival, a tradition since 1162 which makes this masterpiece of a city one of the best places to visit in Europe in winter.

Is there a bad time to visit Venice?

While you’ll always find crowds in Venice, I was actually pretty surprised how it wasn’t busier when I visited the carnival. Perhaps the less favourable weather and the off-season does put some people off. Whatever the reason, you’ll likely find Venice shrouded in most, adding to the spectacle of the masked faces and costumed bodies strolling around the city like Saint Mark’s Square is a grand ball. If you prefer your grand balls inside, there are also plenty of those, too – though you’ll likely need to dig deep to secure a ticket. 


Read more:
Why I love Venice

Boats in the Maltese harbour
The capital of Malta


Best for winter sun and an island escape

With highs of 14°C in February, Malta is one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter.

While it might not be the best time to dive into the sea – trust me, I did my advance PADI course here during winter – the often sunny days are a welcome change to the bleak winters in Northern Europe.

Luckily, the ocean still sparkles even if it’s not calling your name, and afternoons topping up your tan aren’t impossible. With plenty of cultural attractions to entertain, too, even rainy days aren’t wasted.

Wander the historic streets of Valletta – a grand, UNESO-listed city dating back to 1566. Older still is Mdina, an ancient fortified city and the nation’s founding capital. Taking it back even further is the mind-blowing archaeological site of Ghar Dalam. With some of the prehistoric wonders dated thousands of years BCE, you can rest assured that Malta has heritage aplenty alongside her breathtaking bays. 

Best places to visit in Europe
Leogang is a whole different picture in summer

Leogang, Austria

Best for winter sports and skiing with a side of culture

Full disclosure, I haven’t made it to Leogang in winter. Instead, I ventured here in summer – which might sound strange for an awarded ski destination, but I love exploring Austria in the summer months. Even Innsbruck in summer is a world away from its winter personality.

The primary calling in Leogang is The Asitz Mountain, which is transformed in the summer into a cultural hub with concerts, art displays, and plenty more going on.

Come winter, when the thick covering of snow arrives, it’s very much a different story. With some 270km of pistes, it draws in crowds. Snowboarders are also well-catered for at the Nitro Snowpark.

Down from the mountains and easily reached by train, Salzburg is also a delight in winter. So, adding on a visit after the slopes is never a bad idea. Seeing the city’s spires coated in snow and the UNESCO-listed Old Town decked out in festive cheer is an absolute delight. Being a musically-charged city, it won’t be a surprise that the song Silent Night hails from Salzburg, and there’s even a church dedicated to the carol on the city’s fringes. Personally, though, I find Austria in summer is when the country really shines, and if you’re not a ski or snow fan, you might just agree.

Dubrovnik is still one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter.
Dubrovnik, but without the crowds

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Best for some sunny days and a cruise-free city

While showers can come, and temperatures only peak around 13°C, Dubrovnik is still one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter, and you’ve got all the other best places to visit in Croatia just a bus or boat away.

However, warmth isn’t the main reason to head to Croatia’s separated and most southern city in the winter months. 

The best reason to visit Dubrovnik in winter is to avoid crowds. In season, the day trippers and multiple cruise ships can make the heaving streets unbearable. In winter, sailings are rare, and you’ll find this European gem in a much more ‘authentic’ state.

Walk the imposing city walls without jostling for space. People watch – in an enjoyable way – on Stradun. Marvel at the Assumption Cathedral without feeling rushed. Then, head up into the hills by cable car to survey the surroundings. If you’re lucky, you might get your towel down for a few hours on the beach. If not, you’ll have witnessed Dubrovnik how I remember it from 10 years back – blissful. While it’s not the best time for island hopping, this 7-day Croatia itinerary linking Dubrovnik to Split mainly focuses on destinations with some year-round activity.

Best places to visit in Europe
Tallinn’s Old Town has a lot more snow come winter

Tallinn, Estonia

Best for a Christmas market or Valentine’s Day city break

When it comes to Christmas markets, gorgeous Tallinn does not disappoint.

During the rest of the cold season, I wouldn’t count it as one of the places to visit in Europe in winter – it’s a summer hit for me – however, the festive season is a winner. 

Taking over the whole of Town Hall Square, the market, which runs from late November until early January, is a dream. With snow-capped spires all around, warm mulled wine flowing freely, and window cabins decorated in twinkling lights dishing out local treats, this is the literal definition of a winter wonderland. 

Away from the festive cheer, Tallinn delivers enough to entertain. Whether you’d prefer to hang out in the hipster-cool neighbourhood of Kalamaja shopping independent handicrafts and sipping craft beers or explore the well-preserved medieval core’s museums, you’ll find a winter city break to Tallinn is basically a gift from Santa himself. 

Tallin Old Town Square

Read more:
A day in Tallinn

Plaza de Espana Seville
Plaza de Espana, Seville

Seville, Spain 

Best for a winter city break in Spain’s hottest city

Andalusia’s heart-thumping, feet-stomping, and castanet-clapping capital of Seville is a city of fiery passion. It also has the warmest year-round average temperature of any Spanish city.

While this means the heat can almost be unbearable to sightsee in summer, its claim as one of the warmest places to visit in Europe in winter – temperatures can reach 18°C in February – make a winter trip much more pleasant.

Be sure to watch a Flamenco show. Visit the hulking Gothic Cathedral and climb the La Giralda tower. Relax amongst the leafy gardens and green spaces. Find time to admire the tilework of Plaza de España and tour the Seville Museum of Fine Arts. Then, devour all the tapas before sipping beers into the early hours. The city’s student-heavy population keeps the nights long during term time.

Bergen Norway
Bergen, a winter wonderland

Bergen, Norway

Best for a snowy city break and northern lights gateway

Bergen is one of my favourite places to visit in Europe in winter. Even the train to arrive from Oslo – battering through snow storms – was a treat.

The second–largest city in Norway, it gets into the festive spirit with a decent-sized Christmas market. With the wooden huts in Bryggen, the reconstructed medieval wharf, twinkling and snow decorating the entrances to museums, it’s a wrap-up warm and snuggle-by-the-hearth kind of place.

Once you’ve had your fix of this striking city, it’s time for the Northern Lights. Bergen, sadly, isn’t the best place to spot them. Heading north is the way to go, though you could be looking at a full days drive to reach the best views. This, although not environmentally friendly, a domestic flight may be needed – especially if you want to visit the Lofoten archipelago, home to some of the best islands to see in the world. 

Best places to visit in winter
© Trentino Sviluppo S.p.A / Alice Russolo

Trentino, Italy

Best for winter sports against a stunning backdrop 

There really is no wrong time of year to visit Trentino, Italy’s northern region that feels almost Austrian in its appearance and vibes.

Most famous for the Dolomites, Europe’s poster-child mountains, it’s no surprise all those jagged peaks lead to plenty of nearby snow activities.

One of the best places to visit in Europe in winter for skiing is Madonna di Campiglio. For mid-level skiers, I’ve been told it’s a dream. Excellent snow, varied pistes, and all those breathtaking peaks as a backdrop. Add Italy’s infamous cuisine – often with a mountain twist here – and Aperol-fuelled après-ski sessions into the mix, and really, what could be better? For a bit of culture, plan a night or two in Trento, the region’s verdant and welcoming capital city. 

NYE celebrations in Iceland


Best for a wild New Year’s Eve and a land of snow and ice

A lot of people warned me against travelling to Iceland in winter, and although it didn’t go perfectly, the money saved and the snowy-covered experiences were worth it.

The main reason I wanted to visit Iceland at this time of year was for the New Year’s Eve celebrations. Here, it’s a free for all. There’s no official event, and everyone just goes crazy for a few days. Bonfires burn into the night, fireworks go off in all directions, and revelry takes over the street. An actual land of fire and ice.

While visiting in winter was cool, especially seeing such deep snow everywhere, it isn’t without its difficulties when planning a one week itirneary for Iceland. Roads may be shut, the Northern Lights may be hidden behind heavy cloud cover, and tours could be cancelled. Still, I loved it. I even managed to go snorkelling between the tectonic plates – baltic! 

Just do your research before visiting Iceland in the dark depths of limited daylight in December. This isn’t going to be everyone’s favourite place to visit in Europe in winter.

Iceland Winter Caving

Read more:
Iceland in winter

88 replies
  1. x says:

    This is a really awesome and helpful article for me. I really appreciate your work for providing such useful information, thank you so much!

  2. Rohan Gillett says:

    What a great list! If I could pick only place from this list to visit, I’d be at a complete loss. Many of them are amazing. Having said that, I’d be tempted to choose Dresden or Edinburgh. For me, those seem to be ultimate autumn, winter destinations. Architecture, culture, and Vikings all combine to give them a win!

  3. PP Miller says:

    So glad I found this post, Dan! What a great read! Most of the places are on my bucket list, especially Salzburg, Austria. Thanks for the great tips!

  4. Alice says:

    Okay wow! Literally so much of my bucket list is on this list! Iceland and Stockholm and Bath and Germany. The phrase ‘if travel was free, you’d never see me again’, has just sprung to mind… :)

  5. Keith says:

    Some of the places you talked about brings back so much good memories! Especially love Kotor, and it’s nearby towns like Tivat and Perast. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Marta says:

    Everyone knows that the most beautiful Golden Autumn is just in Poland, especially in Krakow and Zakopane! These are two must-see destinations that you simply must see! In Zakopane, I can additionally recommend a fantastic place to stay in an atmospheric wooden villa with a view of Giewont – Willa Motylek

    • Balkrishna says:

      Europe is gorgeous – in winter and summer, all year long. The trick is to know where to visit. We are Europeans and we’ve visited the big cities and hidden gems at different times of year.

  7. Thale says:

    I love this list :-D I’ve been to several of this places and I totally agree with your recommendation. And thank you for the tips about the other places :D

  8. Rishikesh Aroor says:

    Hey Dan, felt like sharing my thoughts so came down here. I read your blog and am amazed to say this but your write ups are really relatable with me as I am a true travel enthusiast. I have a lot of interest in writing travel blogs myself and I have a small blog of my own. I would love to get some useful tips from you on this subject. Thanks for this blog Dan.

  9. Maria says:

    I love this list! Barcelona, Spain is also a great destination during autumn and winter! It never gets really cold, and there are not as many tourists around as other times of the year! Barcelona is so much more than just the beach, and in winter it’s a great opportunity to see everything that’s beautiful and interesting about it.

  10. Miranda Wells says:

    Hi Dan! Nice photos you have here actually, really makes me wonder and daydream going there. Anyways, have you tried traveling in Asia? I would love to hear how are you gonna enjoy it.

  11. Stuart says:

    All beautiful places across the Europe to plan and visit in winter, especially most useful information for someone who plan the vacation and the travelers to add these places in to checklist. A stupendous photography. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Anna Karsten says:

    Super suggestions! Autumn and winter in Europe is looking beautiful this year and with so many Christmas markets this is great for shortlisting some of the best ones. I hear that Germany especially is famous for the Christmas markets so it’s great that you included it here. Let’s just hope winter isn’t as cold as summer was hot because otherwise we’ll all need a lot more layers!

  13. Emily P. says:

    Reading about your suggestions for Europe in the winter makes me long for the open road. Every snapshot on this post is supremely beautiful, inspiring the imagination. Great job!

    I’m a college student, drowning in homework and even more debt, so I’ve had to make the most of places I can visit nearby. I actually started a blog recently about my local adventures and memories made (and in the making.)

    I hope to one day add a section on travel to Japan, (My drean destination since I was a kid) and I was wondering if you had any tips for writing while abroad?

    I’m a scatterbrain so I carry a small journal in my bag, but a lot of times I get so swept up in excitement I forget to write important things down (and take pictures!). How do you keep up?

    Thanks from a friend in adventure!

  14. Wandering Jones says:

    Couldn’t agree more. Traveling during the off-season is so underrated. Like you, my wife and I visited the Cinque Terre in the fall (October) and enjoyed beautiful weather and practically no crowds. Your photo of Manarola is stunning by the way!

  15. C. Randen says:

    Great idea traveling to Europe in the off season! Don’t know why something so obvious never came to my mind before. Thanks for the great information.

  16. Elizabeth Higgins says:

    Thanks for this very informative post, Dan! We always wanted to visit Europe but have not decided on which season to travel. After reading through your article, we may just come and visit Europe in the winter and see the wonderful places you mentioend here. We just hope it won’t get too cold by then!

  17. Kanika Bakshi says:

    Awesome places to explore. I would like to suggest it to my friends so that we can plan a trip and take a time for ourselves in this busy schedule. Keep posting such wonderful places.

  18. Lynn Foy says:

    Very well written post it is! I’ve been looking into going for a one weeks trip to Europe in coming December with family and in this regard you gave me lots of thought for travel destinations in Europe. Many of the destinations I like to visit. Thanks for great sharing with us.

  19. Megri says:

    Europe is a wonderful place filled with lots of adventure, I have taken your suggestions into consideration and will plan my earliest visit to them.

  20. Veronika says:

    I would stick to the South of Europe for winter, but that’s just my preference :D I once spent a New Year’s in Florence and had a time of my life! Such a cool vibe that time of year, not too crowded at all and it didn’t feel touristy.
    Europe is actually pretty awesome anytime of year and it’s great we can choose based on the weather and the tourist season :) I’m based in Prague and it’s just so easy to travel around Europe from here <3

  21. Steven says:

    Travelling off season is always a way to go ! Everything is cheaper and there’s no big crowd… but on the flipside it’s less sunny and warm.

  22. ranu says:

    The santa’s as so cool, they had them projected all over the city jumping around which was amazing. The bone church was very creepy but fascinating to learn the hstory of. Potsdam is a new one for me, will hopefully get visit one day :)

  23. ranu says:

    I loved all these cities, and all the ones I said to bump (I much preferred many of those during winter) – It’s funny how the sun can make such a difference, but for me it’s really the crowds that can make or break a place! :)

  24. Magnificent Japan says:

    We do agree that Europe is a great place to visit during winter, but we do think that Sapporo, Japan is also one of the perfect winter destinations.The mountains around Sapporo, Japan has the lightest, fluffiest powder snow you will ever experience. If you are into ski sports, you definitely must ski in Japan!

  25. Denice Rivera says:

    danflyingsolo 11th August 2016, 2:10 pm
    the French Riviera is so stunning. I really want to just get a car and explore it all one Spring really slowly and with lots of amazing food so thanks for the tips 🙂 do you plan on visiting again sometime soon?

    Hi Dan, I was planning on visiting the French Riviera again on my way to Italy, specifically Cinque Terre ;-) either spring of 2017 or summer. It truly is stunning has has so many AMAZING medieval villages on top of the hills facing the French Riviera and only about 20min from it!

    • danflyingsolo says:

      Ahhh amazing! Cinque Terre is so beautiful and 100% go away from the main season! I’m hoping to get out France again for Spring too :)

  26. Global Brunch says:

    Love this! There is still so many places in Europe that I haven’t seen, especially in winter. I’ve just been to Iceland and it has absolutely blown my mind. I definitely want to return and explore this stunning place in the winter though.

    • danflyingsolo says:

      isn’t Iceland amazing! I would love to get back and see it in Summer as well :) Europe is one continent that is always full of surprises! Safe travels

  27. Denice says:

    I may be late to the party, but I just spent Dec 2015 through May in the south of France, Côté d’Azur and fell in-love with the area, specifically the village of Saint Paul de Vence with its many art galleries, restaurants, magical forest and gorgeous views of the French Riviera, not to mention the stunning blue sky. I don’t think I’ve ever seen the sky so blue, as when I was there and I live in Hawaii. It’s no wonder it was one of Piccaso’s favorite places to frequent. You may have visited already, but it’s only 20min from Nice, up in the mountains. Winter was beautiful there, but Spring is probably the best time to go. They even have a restaurant Picasso use to frequent, that has been passed down generations within the same family who’s original owners were friends of Picasso and the restaurant has some of his original paintings hanging from their walls. I’m looking to go back to visit next year. Made a lot of friends in that area and it now feels like another home for me.

    • danflyingsolo says:

      the French Riviera is so stunning. I really want to just get a car and explore it all one Spring really slowly and with lots of amazing food so thanks for the tips :) do you plan on visiting again sometime soon?

  28. Laurie says:

    I have to disagree in regards to Korcula. We were there in the off season (September) and while it was stunning, everything was closed. EVERYTHING. Korcula city was a ghost town and we ran out of things to do after our first day. Dubrovnik in the fall on the other hand, was amazing.

    • danflyingsolo says:

      Oh wow! I was there in October the 2nd time and it wasn’t so bad, but it might have been school holidays so maybe that was why. And yeah, I just drove past Dubrovnik a few days ago and remember just how beautiful it was :)

    • danflyingsolo says:

      I imagine the same, I would love to get back and see it in the opposite around summer time :)

    • danflyingsolo says:

      I think I need to give Budapest another shot as everyone thinks I am crazy for not loving it… Have a great time in those two citities, they are awesome city trips too :)

  29. Shirley says:

    Try Cesky Krumlov in the Czech Republic. About an hour southish on the train from Prague. Small medieval town with an unusual bridge.

    • danflyingsolo says:

      It is somewhere I really want to go and was meant to on my last visit but ended up visiting Karlov Vary instead… next time :)

  30. Greg says:

    This post was awesome. Just what I was looking for. My wife and I are wanting to plan a trip to EU, but we would like to do it while avoiding the crowds/tourists.

    • danflyingsolo says:

      I’m so excited for you. I would always recommend missing summer and doing Spring/Autumn – less people and I find it much more beautiful!

    • danflyingsolo says:

      I loved Bergen, but I went on the 2nd January and all the things I wanted to do was impossible and it was freezing haha. Need to go back and give it a chance in better climates I think :)

  31. Tom Bartel says:

    Some great suggestions here, except Belgrade for Budapest. Belgrade has a long way to go before it gets anywhere close to being as interesting as Budapest. Love your photos, btw.

    • danflyingsolo says:

      Thank you so much. I think I need to give Budapest another chance, I found it seriously boring but the weather was really poor… That said, in Belgrade I met some awesome locals on the flight over who showed me a great time so that might have helped sway my decision. Safe travels!

  32. sb says:

    I think you visited a lot of cities in the wrong season-winter! I’ve done the same though, been to a place and thought “not all that” bc it was cold and wintry but when the sun came out the next day….!

    • danflyingsolo says:

      I loved all these cities, and all the ones I said to bump (I much preferred many of those during winter) – It’s funny how the sun can make such a difference, but for me it’s really the crowds that can make or break a place! :)

  33. Alice says:

    Iceland was the most magical place I’ve been to, did you know they have 12 santa’s? One for each day leading to Christmas! I loved Ljubljana too and Kutna Hora, the bone church was the most creepy but cool structure i’ve seen, I kept thinking if there was a lot ghosts around when I went in! I went to Berlin one year for xmas, and it was fairly quiet, and if you take a trip to Potsdam just outside of it, its beautiful too.

    • danflyingsolo says:

      The santa’s as so cool, they had them projected all over the city jumping around which was amazing. The bone church was very creepy but fascinating to learn the hstory of. Potsdam is a new one for me, will hopefully get visit one day :)

      Safe travels!

  34. Nicole says:

    Yes please with a side of yes! Totally agree on Kutna Hora, Korčula, Belgrade and Ljubljana… And sure I would on the others on the list if I’d been to them!

    • danflyingsolo says:

      I like your style! Serbia is somewhere I would love to spend a lot of time exploring, sadly only had a city break there.

    • Toby Dore says:

      I taught Study Abroad in Florence for six weeks in 2014. I traveled around Italy every weekend and then for two weeks after it was over. We took several trips outside of Florence with the students as well. I was told over and over to not bother with Milan. I did visit Lake Como and loved it but it was very crowded. Enjoying your blog.

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