Europe's Top 5 Travel Destinations This Summer (2024)

With summer on the horizon, visions of iconic European landmarks, dazzling beaches and romantic coastal villages fill travelers’ heads. From the vibrancy of world-capitals to quaint Mediterranean isles steeped in history, Europe offers endless possibilities to craft your dream summer getaway.

If narrowing down just 5 destinations seems impossible, we’re here to help with these can’t miss European trips that promise to create lifelong vacation memories. From the masterpieces of Amsterdam to the turquoise waters of Santorini, read on for the top destinations that will have you proclaiming this the best summer yet.

Wander Through History in Rome

In Rome, spectacular sights from antiquity stand alongside modern neighborhoods with equal panache. Just steps from your hotel, you may stumble upon iconic landmarks like the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain or Spanish Steps, giving you a sense of the city’s rich history around every corner.

The Colosseum is a must-see, allowing you to envision gladiators and events from Ancient Roman times. Nearby, the Roman Forum lets you walk among the ruins of temples, marketplaces and halls where Caesar likely tread. Of course, no Roman holiday is complete without tossing a coin backward into Trevi Fountain, ensuring you’ll return to the Eternal City someday.

Vatican City’s Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica never fail to impress, with Michelangelo’s painted chapel ceiling and the grand dome of the basilica among Rome’s most prized masterpieces. Between sightseeing, be sure to pause for espresso and authentic pasta carbonara or cacio e pepe. With famous art, iconic landmarks, and cuisine to rival its history and culture around every turn, Rome offers a truly unforgettable Italian getaway.

Escape the Ordinary – Visit Paris

Paris, the City of Light, is a perennial favorite for summer travelers who want to experience its iconic landmarks, see world-class art in its museums, and soak in the vibe of its lively cafés and restaurants. Highlights include seeing the Eiffel Tower, exploring Montmartre, and admiring priceless art at the Louvre.

The Eiffel Tower is the quintessential symbol of Paris. Ascend to the top for panoramic views across the city. It’s especially magical at night when the tower sparkles with thousands of golden lights. Nearby, take a cruise on the Seine river and past Notre Dame Cathedral and the historic bridges of Paris.

Make your way to Montmartre, the charming bohemian district perched high over Paris. Meander through the steep, winding streets lined with colorful buildings, shops, cafés and vineyards. Don’t miss a visit to the iconic Sacré-Cœur basilica, where you can gaze out over the best views of Paris. End your day mingling with locals over carafes of French wine at a classic Parisian bistro.

With world-famous art, landmarks, food and romantic allure, Paris offers an unforgettable travel experience. The City of Light shines brightest in summer!

Bask Under Blue Skies in Santorini

With its whitewashed villages perched on volcanic cliffs overlooking sapphire waters, Santorini looks like something straight out of a postcard. Take in breathtaking views of the sea-filled caldera and colorfully dressed locals from panoramic lookouts in Fira, Oia, and Imerovigli. The island’s multi-hued beaches carved into volcanic rock range from the popular black sands of Perissa and Kamari to the reddish hues of Red Beach.

Embark on a sailing tour for picture-perfect views of Santorini’s sheer cliffs and turquoise caldera waters. Stop swimming and snorkel in volcanic hot springs. In the evenings, take the steep walk down to Ammoudi Bay to dine on the island’s famed tomatoes, fava dip, grilled fish and seafood fresh from the Aegean Sea.

As the Mediterranean sun slowly sets each evening in hues of orange and pink, the island gets even more atmospheric and romantic. Visit one of the many vineyards planted deep into the volcanic soil for wine tastings with views before returning to whitewashed Oia to shop, gaze at the sunset and get lost wandering the labyrinth of footpaths by the sea.

Marvel at Masterpieces in Amsterdam

Amsterdam brings together historical charm and contemporary cool. Amsterdam canal cruise is one of the best things to do in the city. Cruise the atmospheric canals past gabled buildings that look straight out of a Dutch Master still life. The city’s rich history is revealed in the Medieval center and Begijnhof courtyard, while the vibrant nightlife scenes draw travelers from afar.

The Van Gogh Museum and Rijksmuseum house legendary artworks from the Dutch Golden Age. See Van Gogh’s iconic Sunflowers and Rembrandt’s giant The Night Watch. Then relax under the shade of trees in the grassy expanse of Vondelpark on a sunny day.

Cycling is one of the best ways to experience Amsterdam like a local. Pedal along the shimmering canals and over quaint bridges, stopping to browse the blooming tulips at Amsterdam’s floating flower market. As evening falls, join the locals at a cozy brown café for Belgian beer or Dutch gin. From world-class museums and historic hideaways to eclectic shops and concerts, Amsterdam offers something for every traveler. Marvel at this cosmopolitan capital from the seat of a bicycle this summer!

Be Captivated by Croatia

With its Adriatic Sea vistas, island-speckled coastlines and gem-colored waters, Croatia dazzles. Base yourself in the medieval walled city of Dubrovnik to wander marble walkways and terracotta-tiled rooftops. Get lost in the warren of stone streets, historic palaces and churches while gazing out over the sparkling sea.

Take a day trip to the forested island of Korčula, brimming with vineyards and olive groves. Or explore the crystalline waters and steep cliffs of Pakleni Islands by sailing boat. Visit the famous 16th-century Blue Cave sea cave on Biševo Island where sunlight passing through an underwater entrance bathes the interior in an unearthly blue glow.

In Split, discover Roman history in Diocletian’s Palace and watch the sun set behind the palm trees on the lively Riva Harbourfront promenade. End the day feasting on fresh seafood like grilled octopus paired with white wines made from indigenous Croatian grapes. With ancient fortresses, relaxing islands, and shimmering stretches of Adriatic coastline, Croatia is guaranteed to captivate you.

Also Read: The Best Destinations for Luxury Entertainment

Europe's Top 5 Travel Destinations This Summer (2024)
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