Imagine medieval castles, the gorgeous Alps, soft, buttery croissants and rich wine. We’ve already got you rushing off to plan your European vacation, haven’t we? The diversity of experiences that you can enjoy in Europe is vast, and we’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite summer destinations.
1. Prague, Czech Republic – It’s touristy, it’s a Bohemian cliché. But if there’s one thing you can’t deny, Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The church spires that seem to stretch endlessly, the cobbled streets and the Charles Bridge over the Vltava River stay with you long after you’ve left the city. But beyond these, the city has tons of stuff that you must experience. Visit the 10th century Castle Vysehrad, explore the city’s neighborhoods on foot, catch a concert or an opera, and round off the evening with a cold beer in one of Prague’s famous beer gardens. Fly from Mumbai, Delhi or any other major Indian city to one of Europe’s busy hubs like Frankfurt, Amsterdam, or Vienna and then catch a connecting flight to Prague.
2. Bordeaux, France – For some good old French wine and romance this summer, make Bordeaux your destination. Visit the Chateau Lafite-Rothschild, a temple of sorts for vintage wines that you won’t forget in a hurry. The city is packed with cafes and restaurants that serve French fare bursting with flavors. Don’t forget to try the desserts that Bordeaux is known for like fanchonnette bordelaise, a simple puff pastry in custard with a generous covering of meringue, and the _cannele de Bordeaux, small cakes that you will find only in this city. Fly to Paris from any major Indian, and then take a local flight to Bordeaux. _
3. Vienna, Austria – The first impression that Vienna gives you is one of elegance and grace. Stay a few days and you’ll see that the city really knows how to have fun. Once you’ve seen all the mandatory tourist attractions – the Hofburg, the Schonbrunn Palace, and St Stephen’s Cathedral, head out to explore the lesser-known parts of the city. Stop at the Heuriger, a wine tavern in the vineyards surrounding Vienna. Coffee and cake are a ritual in Vienna. Visit one of the tons of lovely coffeehouses and tuck into some mouth-watering apfelstrudel or the famous Sacher Torte while you sip your cappuccino. Some major airlines fly to Vienna from Mumbai and Delhi.
4. Aarhus, Denmark – The Danes are happy people. You just need to visit Aarhus to see this yourself. One of the most dynamic and vibrant cities in Europe, Aarhus is also a gateway to ancient Viking history. Visit the Jelling Rune Stones, a UNESCO World Heritage Site while you’re in Aarhus. The Moesgard Museum is home to some of the oldest artifacts from the Viking age. Indulge in some mussels with hand-cut chips and a traditional Danish meal of potatoes, pork and cream sauce. Fly to Aarhus from major Indian cities via Copenhagen. Major airlines have frequent flights to the Danish capital.
5. Ljubljana, Slovenia – Often referred to as the Prague without the crowds, the Slovenian capital Ljubljana is one of the greenest cities in Europe. The main draw of the city is its simplicity. You won’t find crowds lining up outside the city’s attractions or a complicated transport system. It’s easy to fall in love with the city and its culture. The Ljubljanica River with renowned architect Joze Plecnik’s masterpiece, the Triple Bridge (Tromostovje) are gorgeous especially when seen at night. Visit the Sunday Flea Market, and indulge in some Slovene style burgers. Get acquainted with the city, and you may just not want to leave.
6. Stavanger, Norway – Apart from being a gateway to the fjords of Norway, Stavanger has a lot going for it. This coastal city has pleasant summers and the best way to explore the place is to go hiking. Gamle (Old) Stavanger is the historic city center with cobbled streets and 18th century wooden houses. Visit the Canning museum and the Stavanger Maritime Museum, both of which are definitely worth your while. Take a trip to see the magnificent Lysefjord. Stavanger is connected to Indian cities via Oslo, the country’s capital, and also other European cities like Copenhagen and Amsterdam.
7. Algarve, Portugal – Breathtaking cliffs and golden beaches make the Algarve region one of Portugal’s favorite holiday destinations. Stop at Cape Vincent for its views of the cliffs, and on your way make sure you try some cold Sagres beer at the town its named after. The Doña Ana Beach is another immensely picturesque beach, just a 20 minute walk from downtown Lagos in the Algarve region. Faro Airport is the main airport in the region, and is connected to Lisbon and other parts of the country.
8. Dubrovnik, Croatia – Nicknamed the “Pearl Of The Adriatic”, Dubrovnik is no longer a guarded secret. The city’s historic walls hold within them most of the famous sites. Take a cable car to the top of Mount Srdj from where you can get fabulous views of the old town, the sea and the mountains of Herzegovina. Indulge in some Adriatic fare, and wash it down with a nice Dalmatian red wine.
9. Reykjavic, Iceland – Reykjavic may seem like a faraway mystical land, but it is now more accessible than ever to travelers. Visit the bustling harbour during early hours of the day and catch stunning views of the peak Esja. Head to the Icelandic countryside and take in the hot springs at Geysir. Go whale watching and hiking to truly enjoy nature in all its glory.
10. Edinburgh, Scotland – The Scottish capital with its rich history and beautiful medieval masonry is a treat to the traveler. Explore the Old Town, visit the cities bars and restaurants and take in the views from the magnificent Edinburgh Castle. Climb up to Arthur’s Seat, the summit of a 251-meter high extinct volcano and watch the sun rise. When you’re in Scotland, don’t forget the Scotch. Take a whisky tour with the Scotch Whisky Experience and sample some excellent single malt. And this is where Skyscanner’s headquarters are! Edinburgh is connected to Indian cities by major airlines flying to London, Amsterdam and several other hubs in Europe.