15 best cities to visit in Europe

This page is all about traveling. We want to give you the best ideas when you are feeling like you don’t quite know where to go. In this article, we have selected the 15 best cities to visit in Europe. Some of them are the cheapest European cities to visit, some the best central European cities to visit. Each of these European cities to visit has something unique about them and we want to share that with you.

15 Best cities to visit in Europe

Why did we choose these top European cities to visit? In our opinion, they are filled with culture, nightlife, good food and even safe to travel alone. The best cities to visit in central Europe can be affordable, but you can also go on a splurge. The best places to visit in Europe don’t just have to be about museums and everything you normally read online. If this is your 3rd or 4th time visiting some of them, just try to discover new places. We hope you can choose which is the best city to visit in Europe in your opinion. Let’s dive into reading about the best cities to travel in Europe.

1. Rome

best cities to visit in Europe

Rome, ‘The Eternal City‘ and also the city that was built on seven hills is one of the top cities to visit in Europe. The capital of Italy is romantic, fun, has a lot of good energy, amazing food, and friendly people. There are many reasons why you should be visiting Rome and not just for the cultural ones or seeing the Pope. Although the architecture is quite impressive and I would even say because of it Rome becomes easily the best city to visit in Europe. But besides this, you get to do many other things.

First of all, if you’re in Rome you have to eat some pasta and pizza. I always say carbs are life, but these foods are also good for the soul. Funny enough Italians have a very balanced lifestyle considering how many carbs they eat. Is Rome expensive to travel to? Yes, it is, and for an understandable reason. It is in the top most visited cities and very popular ones for romantic getaways, for fun nightlife, for its worldwide known cuisine. With that being said, if you want to have that authentic Italian feeling, then it is worth spending the money.

2. Budapest

budapest bridges

This one is fun and on a budget! Budapest is probably one of the cheapest European cities to visit and the best central European cities to visit. The ‘Pearl of the Danube’ is rich in architecture, culture, food and the people are friendly. If you are looking to try some authentic Hungarian food, then look no further. Budapest is packed with all sorts of restaurants. It is also famous for its fine-dining restaurants having multiple Michelin stars. You are in for a treat. The many reasons why Budapest is one of the best cities to visit in central Europe.

Just think of buildings like the New York Cafe Budapest. This Italian Renesaince style building is one of the oldest cafes in Budapest, more precisely about 125 years old. You really have to appreciate the beauty inside. One of the best things about this capital is that many buildings were left in their original style but served a different purpose. They haven’t been remodeled and you get to appreciate the architecture as it was built originally. Whether you are looking for authentic Hungarian food or the nightlife in Budapest, visiting different cultural places, this city is for you.

3. Milan

best cities to visit in Europe

The ‘Fashion Capital of the World’, your very own Milan, the top cities to visit in Europe. Why is Milan so special? If you think about it, Milan is not the most scenic city in Europe, however, it does have some very beautiful buildings. Some of these buildings are the Duomo, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, Santa Maria Delle Grazie, and so on. Although many people would come here because of the shopping and Milan fashion show.

It is the best cities to visit in Europe because it can be whatever you want it to be. Whether you want to go on a shopping spree, visit its famous buildings or just enjoy the food, you can do all of it in Milan. If you are not quite sure what to visit, why not plan on going to one of the many festivals in Milan? Or visit the best hidden gems in Milan, such as the Bosco Verticale or the Leonardo da Vinci’s vineyard. We would definitely recommend visiting Milan for two days!

4. Florence

best cities to visit in Europe

Having worked for a wholesaler company selling hotel rooms, when I think of Florence, I think of the Four Seasons Hotel that is absolutely stunning. Also very expensive, but hey, worth visiting once in a lifetime. This hotel isn’t want makes Florence one of the European cities to visit and the best cities to travel in Europe. Florence is named ‘The city of Lilies’ due to the festivity in the honor of the goddess Flora. This city is definitely on the more expensive side, however, it should be on your list for a romantic and relaxing getaway.

With many Italian cities, you will find exquisite architecture, built in renaissance style. Florence has its famous buildings like the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, the Basilica of Santa Croce, Basicila di San Lorenzo and many others. You will have a great list of things to visit for a cultural getaway as well. Really, this is one of the biggest reasons why it’s the top cities to visit in Europe, due to its amazing buildings. This makes it perfect for a short visit while you are in Italy!

5. Seville

best cities in spain to live

Seville is the next one of the list of best cities to visit in Europe and one of the cheapest European cities to visit. If you love Spanish culture and history, Seville is definitely for you. It was marked as the number one city to visit and for a good reason. The largest Gothic cathedral in the world can be found here which is also a UNESCO World Heritage site. The architecture is truly one of a kind and you cannot miss out on spending a few days here.

Some of the things to do in Seville include spending time in Triana and Santa Cruz neighborhoods, tasting some Spanish tapas, and even watching flamenco shows! Spanish cuisine is very famous all over the world and rich in flavor. You can enjoy the street food while walking the streets of Seville. It is also a great place for nightlife and dancing, considering how it is on the more affordable side. You will get away with spending less and drinking/eating more!

6. Malaga

best cities in spain to live

The best cities to travel in Europe is Malaga. Is it said that you can visit Malaga in any season, however, let’s face it, during the summer it would be the best. They have over 300 days of sunshine each year. In case you are living in a cold country, Malaga is your place. What are the things to do in Malaga? Well, you could just walk the streets and discover the bars, restaurants, and even street food.

In case you are an art fan, visit the Picasso Museum, although next to the sea you might want to just stay on the beach. Costa Del Sol is one of the most popular beaches in the world and many tourists come here each year. Don’t worry, there are 15 other beaches in Malaga, so you will have plenty of space. Malaga is also one of the top cities to visit in Europe on a budget. Beers can be as cheap as €2.25 and a meal can be around €10.00. You really can’t beat this!

7. Prague

best cities to visit in europe

Prague is often called “The City of 100 Towers” or “The City of a Thousand Spires” due to its gothic styles buildings with pointy tops. The capital city of the Czech Republic is also considered one of the best cities to visit in Europe and the best central European cities to visit. You can also find the largest castle in the world in Prague, which dates back to the 9th century. For the most stunning view, visit Bridge Charles during the night, sunset, or sunrise and I guarantee you will be in awe.

We have to mention that Prague is quite an expensive city in the country, although some might say it is still cheaper than other European cities. This probably depends on everyone’s budget. You can get away with spending £20 in the restaurant on a meal, excluding drinks. Prague is full of interesting monuments, the town is beautiful and you can easily visit everything on foot. This just makes Prague one of the best cities to visit in central Europe.

8. Barcelona

best cities in spain to live

The top European cities to visit is Barcelona, ‘The City of Counts’ or also called ‘The City of Gaudi’. The reason why it received the first name as it was home to the Count of Barcelona. I think it is pretty obvious why Barcelona is considered the best city to visit in Europe. You literally have everything here. Culture, architecture, food, nightlife, fun, and new things. So many things to do, you just have to pick for yourself.

What do we recommend? Depending on how much time you wish to spend, you should definitely visit the main buildings like the Sagrada Familia, La Rambla, Barcelona Cathedral, and Arc de Triomf. Barcelona also has the huge advantage of having a beach. In case you are sick of roaming around tourists, you can just enjoy the beach and the sunshine with some cocktails. If you want to have some amazing photos, climb onto the high spots and have the best city views. See the travel guide to one of the top European cities to visit.

9. Vienna

best cities to visit in europe

The beautiful capital of Vienna is one of my favorites best central European cities to visit. Although many would argue with me, I believe it is one of the cheapest European cities to visit. You can get away with a nice hotel for £30-50/night or you can book yourself an Airbnb apartment in the city center. Vienna is called the City of Dreams and The City of Music due to being the home to Mozart, Beethoven, and Sigmund Freud. The city of music is considered on the top of the best central European cities to visit and best cities to visit in Europe.

Vienna is not only famous for its music, but for also being the Wine Capital. Did you know that it is the only capital city in the world that produces high quantities of wine? Just enjoy some local wine walking along Vienna’s Wine Trail. Another gem in this magical city is the Zoo. Vienna Zoo is the world’s oldest and only baroque zoo. You can find it next to the Schönbrunn Palace. For a good reason, Vienna is one of the best cities to visit in central Europe and has been voted to be the most livable city in the world.

10. Copenhagen

best cities to visit in Europe

Here we have the lovely Copenhagen. The beauty of Denmark, the city of fairy tales, a city where people are the happiest in the world. Although the weather isn’t always the most wonderful, during the winters you get a lot of wind and not enough daytime, Copenhagen is worth visiting for many reasons and thus making it one of the top European cities to visit. Copenhagen is also considered to be the fourth most expensive capital in Europe, but it is worth every penny, or should I say krone.

In case you want to experience how Danes live, you should spend a good few days in Copenhagen. The public transport is quite amazing, very logical and easy to get around by train, underground and bus. You’ll find many amazing restaurants with delicious food, small little cafes along the canals, and even enjoy the nightlife. This city is also worth visiting alone, it is very safe, and Danish people are kind to strangers. In our opinion, Copenhagen is one of the best cities to travel in Europe and the best places to visit in Europe.

11. Amsterdam

best city amsterdam

The next on the list of best cities to visit in Europe and in the top European cities to visit is Amsterdam. The capital city of the Netherlands and the best places to visit within the Netherlands. Amsterdam is also called “Venice of the North” due to the large number of canals which are also a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Just as with many capital cities, Amsterdam is a bit expensive to visit, but like I always say, it will depend on your budget. If you just want to have a quick visit, 3-day trip you do not have to spend a lot.

Why is it among the best places to visit in Europe? When you visit Amsterdam it will take you back to the 17th century Dutch Golden Age. The Red Light District is probably one of the most famous places everyone knows about. It used to be the place for brothels in the 19th century, the owners using red gas lights to attract customers. Since then the name remained, the canals are decorated with red lights and you’ll get to see bars and cinemas too here. Visit at your own risk! Let’s see some other top European cities to visit.

12. Manchester

best city manchester

Manchester is best known for their famous football team, ‘The Red Devils’ aka Manchester United F.C. We are not here to talk about the football club, but about Manchester also being one of the best cities to travel in Europe. Just like in London, Manchester has many museums and most of them are free to visit. Manchester Museum, People’s History Museum, National Football Museum, are all worth visiting.

Manchester is one of the best cities to travel in Europe and it also happens to be the cheapest European cities to visit. This city is really affordable to live in overall, more affordable than London. If you are just planning to visit, you can also rent cheaper apartments or find affordable hotels to stay at. Another reason why Manchester is famous is due to its nightlife. One of the best clubs is the Warehouse Project and it brings very famous artists. If you are tired of visiting cultural places, then just enjoy the English food and nightlife in Manchester.

13. Dublin

best cities to visit in Europe

I find Dublin to be a very beautiful and magical city. But why is Dublin considered one of the best cities to visit in Europe? First of all, you will feel like you are home. The Irish are very friendly and kind. You feel like you are welcomed and if you have any doubts of where to go, just ask someone for guidance, you might even end up drinking a beet with them. This brings me to the next reason why Dublin is the best places to visit in Europe. the famous Guinness beer. You cannot stay in Dublin without drinking Guinness beer.

Ireland is also very famous for its food. It’s not just potatoes, stews, and fish, you’ll find many other international restaurants to enjoy while you are in Dublin, one of the top European cities to visit. In case you are a fan of literature, what better place to visit than Dublin. The home of Oscar Wilde, Samuel Beckett, Jonathan Swift, and many more, they have been inspired by Dublin in their books and stories. If you like live music, you can go to local pubs where they play traditional live music. That and some Guinness beer, what else can you ask for?

14. Lisbon

best cities to visit in Europe

Lisbon is yet again one of the cheapest European cities to visit and the best cities to travel in Europe. Often called ‘City of the seven hills’ as just like Rome, it was built over seven hills and each of them will have a very unique view over the city. I have also learned that Lisbon is actually the second oldest capital in Europe, the first being Athens. As I mentioned before, Lisbon is a budget-friendly city to visit. You can find beer for €2, you really can’t beat that. Street food is also available and will be affordable to eat out in the city.

Another reason why it is one of the best places to visit in Europe is due to its diversity in the activities you can do. If you take a ride on the 28 line tram, you can just sit back and enjoy viewing the city. Have you heard about chorizo? In Lisbon, you can taste the fire-cooked chorizo. For some nighttime fun, it is worth visiting Bairro Alto, which are small cobblestone streets yet at night they are alive and filled with people. Lisbon is also a very sunny city and makes it picture perfect!

15. Edinburgh

best cities to visit in Europe

This city is truly mesmerizing. Edinburgh, also known as ‘Auld Reekie’ is the last on our list of top European cities to visit and the best places to visit in Europe. Auld Reekie means ‘Old Smokey’. Back in the Middle Ages, people used the drainage site for their own waste and sometimes even dumped dead bodies. The smell was not the most pleasant, thus having the perfect name of ‘Old Smokey’. Edinburgh is considered quite a costly city, it is the 21st most expensive city in the world. That does not mean you can’t have a good time even on a budget.

I would visit Edinburgh just to walk around the medieval Old Town, visiting Scottish pubs and bars, many century-old buildings, and so on. There is also a New Town which has a bit of a different atmosphere. You’ll find shopping centers, Georgian townhouses, and museums. Edinburgh is also very famous for its festivals and nightlife. With Covid slowly getting out of the way, we are eager to dance again and just enjoy life during the night too. Where will you first go while visiting Edinburgh?

15 best cities to visit in Europe – Conclusion

We loved writing about the best cities to visit in Europe. There is a city for everyone, whether you are looking for the cheapest European cities to visit, or the best central European cities to visit, we have one for you. These top European cities to visit will open your vision to a different side of the world. If you are traveling from abroad then you get to know the culture better and experience how the locals live. Which one is the best city to visit in Europe? We could not choose!

Have a look at the best cities to travel in Europe and see why they are so famous. Plan itineraries, explore alone or with friends, the choice is yours. Let us know in the comments what other cities European cities to visit.

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Piroska Vigh

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