Europe is one of the smallest continents, but it is also the one with the most countries. It’s a beautiful region for exploring the diverse cultures, history, and other unusual locations that can be found all over Europe. We all have heard and read stories about Paris, London, Rome, or Berlin. Of course, each of these cities is the true treasure of Europe. However, they often overshadow less popular European destinations worthy of your attention. This is why we decided to compile a list of five unique and unknown European destinations off the beaten track to visit in 2023. And the good news? You can see all these destinations with your ETIAS visa waiver, so what are you waiting for? Start packing your luggage and join us in new yet staggering European cities.
The country’s fifth-largest city is Zaragoza, northeastern Spain. It is overshadowed in many towns and cities, making it the ideal city break for those who want to enjoy authentic Spanish culture.
Zaragoza is home to many museums and religious sites. A Tapestry Museum is located in Zaragoza, home to Goya, one of the world’s most famous painters. There is also a Roman Theatre Museum.
If museums don’t appeal to you, Zaragoza has many other attractions, such as markets and street art. Zaragoza’s food scene is fantastic. Tapas Thursdays are a popular event in Zaragoza. You’ll find many locals on the streets and at the bars.
Bremen, Germany’s largest seaport, is located on the Weser River. It is also home to many historical monuments. You can stroll through Bremen’s Marktplatz to see many of Bremen’s most iconic attractions, such as the eighteen-foot tall, fifteen-century statue of Roland, Germany’s most famous knight.
Tourists with green thumbs should visit Rhododendron Park to enjoy the beauty of the azaleas and rhododendrons. Next, stop by the Muhle am Wall for a bite at one of Bremen’s most popular restaurants, Kaffeemuhle.
Bruges, or Brugge in Dutch, is a charming medieval city that exudes historic charm and feels like something out of a fairytale. The city is often called an open-air museum. I agree with that. Did you know that the entire city center of Bruges has been designated UNESCO cultural heritage?
Brugges is full of soaring churches, bustling markets, cobbled lanes, and enchanting canals. It’s best to wander around the city without a plan.
It is best to visit the city in spring when its tranquil courtyards are adorned with daffodils. If you brave the Belgian winter, it will be a dream come true to see the icy town.
Although it is easy to mistake San Marino for Italy, it is an Italian microstate. It is home to beautiful museums and monuments to European history. Take a trip to the Three Towers, a series of centuries-old fortresses located at the Monte Titano, and step into a fairytale. Montale, the third tower, is closed for indoor tours. Visitors can visit Guaita or Cesta, the two buildings open to the public. Altro Gelato is San Marino’s first and only ice cream shop. They use local ingredients from organic farms.
Padua is an alternative European city to Rome if you want a vacation in Italy. It is located approximately 45km west of Venice airport and 48km from Treviso. It’s also on the high-speed train line, so it’s easy for you to get there from other large cities.
The Basilica of Saint Anthony is another must-see, as the three squares make up the heart of the city’s center and the historical University of Padua’s amazing botanical gardens.
Hungry? Are you hungry? Budget-friendly? There are many great street food options in Padua! A hot cup of bigoli (local pasta with duck-meat sauce) at Bigoi or some seafood at La Folperia.
You can find the best places to drink in the Jewish quarter. These bars are bustling every night, thanks to university students.
Europe may be one of the smallest continents. But what it lacks in scale, it makes up with breathtaking alpine views and fields of lavender and vine, limestone hills, and art and architecture that threatens to overshadow some of nature’s best. It can be difficult and overwhelming to choose the best European cities for travel, especially if we are talking about unique and unknown European destinations. Each city is better than the others. You only need to select a region and go with your gut instincts.