Inspiration Destinations Europe Lesser-Known Cities in Europe Worth the Hype

Lesser-Known Cities in Europe Worth the Hype

March 14, 2023

Uncrowded beaches, towering medieval fortresses and authentic dining: these lesser-trodden cities in Europe boast hidden treasures worth getting excited about. 

Double-decker buses in cosmopolitan London, romantic river cruises on the Seine in Paris and the stunning buildings of beautiful Barcelona: these may be the undisputed icons of Europe that evoke globetrotting fantasies in the mind by mere mention, but beyond these holiday havens, the continent is home to countless under-the-radar gems just waiting to be discovered.

Delight in the unexpected as you connect with nature, navigate heritage cobblestone streets and feast on flavourful local fare paired with wondrous wines, all while being dazzled by unforgettable scenery and colossal monuments. These unexpected cities in Europe are sure to thrill. 

Ready to book your ultimate Europe Escape? Discover our handpicked escapes

Ljubljana, Slovenia 

Ljubljana, Slovenia

Boasting a vibrant arts and culinary scene, along with a reputation as one of Europe’s greenest cities, the capital of Slovenia has much to offer. Tranquil moments await on the manicured lawns of Tivoli Park or rocky hiking trails boasting panoramic vistas of the Kamnik-Savinja Alps. Embrace the rich history and architecture of this delightful city as you meander through Ljubljana Castle, a 16th-century masterpiece with towers and ramparts that showcase sweeping views of the restaurant-lined laneways of Old Town below. 

Begin your adventure in Ljubljana on a Slovenia tour.  

Dubrovnik, Croatia 

Fort Lovrijenac at Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik's UNESCO World Heritage-listed medieval city of cobblestone paths and ancient fortress walls must be seen to be believed. You might recognise it as King’s Landing from the popular television series 'Game of Thrones', but there is more to this grand city than a fleeting TV appearance. Gaze out over stunning seascapes from the city walls before exploring Stradun, a main thoroughfare and filming location for Star Wars Episode VIII. Not only for film fanatics and architecture enthusiasts, Dubrovnik also delivers culinary excellence, panoramic cable car views and a lively night scene. 

Discover the Dalmatian coastline on a Country Roads of Croatia tour

Porto, Portugal

Porto and Duoro River, Portugal

The birthplace of port wine, Porto is a vibrant paradise for foodies seeking gastronomic greatness. Feast your way through food markets to craft beer bars and Michelin-starred restaurants, or devour the catch of the day or savour steaks seared to perfection and paired masterfully with fortified wines. Consider a Douro River cruise to take in the dazzling sights of the winery-flanked waterway in comfort or navigate charming streets lined with terraced houses in lively Porto Ribeira. 

Experience Portugal and Spain for yourself here

The Amalfi Coast, Italy 

Positano, Italy

Home to Italy's most beautiful destinations, the Amalfi Coast is known for more than sun-soaked beaches and refined boutiques. While technically not a ‘city’, the region offers pockets of small cities worthy of your attention.  

Experience picturesque Positano and its pastel houses or the intricate Baroque-style grandeur of Saint Andrew’s Cathedral in Amalfi. Gaze out from Ravello's historic Villa Cimbrone and the spectacular Terrace of Infinity or take in pristine coastlines and the bewitching Blue Grotto at Capri. In Sorrento, dine on fresh seafood before sampling gelato and limoncello near the magnificent Piazza Tasso. 

Embark on your Italian adventure to Amalfi here

Tromsø, Norway 

Aurora Borealis above Tromsø, Norway

A picturesque polar destination offering more than snow, this artic haven in northern Norway is sure to amaze with its incredible views and experiences awaiting discovery. Chase the ethereal glow of the northern lights, embark on a whale safari and take in sweeping alpine sights from Mount Storsteinen cable car. Encounter Sami Reindeer herders and their majestic creatures on wintery plains, or hike throughout the night under the midnight sun during Tromsø's short summer. 

Chase the northern lights of Scandinavia here. 

Ready to book your ultimate Europe Escape? Discover our handpicked escapes

Looking for more European inspiration? Read Fondue, Fireplaces & French Martinis: Europe’s Best Après-Ski

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