Discover These Popular Destinations in Europe

Asako Maruoka's picture

Do you love to travel? Chances are, if you’re reading this, the answer is yes. Travel can provide a good time, relaxation, and fun. And, when you’re traveling (whether at home or abroad), there is a whole world to explore - chief of all, the chance to meet people, learn different languages, explore a variety of cuisines, and revel in new music, landscape, and activities.

Traveling abroad can be different from visiting melting pots such as Los Angeles and New York, where the diverse array of people tend to conform a bit to the national norm. Leaving the US opens you up to a plethora of new experiences. Whether you’re used to travel options such as NYC’s Go New York Tours, where you can experience the city on an itinerary based on popular destinations, or discovering a destination on your own, there’s a travel style just for you. Here are four popular places to discover in Europe, where you can learn culture, history, archaeology, language, try new foods, and more.

Discover These Popular Destinations in Europe

The Preserved Marvels of Rome

Ancient Rome was often regarded as the pinnacle of civilization (there have no doubt been several such places on nearly every continent at one time or another), and has many still-existing indicators of its former glory. 

As one of the top tourist destinations in the world, you’ll be floored by the sheer expanse of the Colosseum and the architectural perfection of the Pantheon, and perhaps be moved to awe and tears by the majesty of the Sistine Chapel and Peter’s Basilica. As can be expected, there are touring packages that ensure you see all the sights of the Eternal City. Perhaps you'll get to use some of your high school Latin, when exploring history here!

Rome! From Discover These Popular Destinations in Europe

Paris: The Aptly-Named City of Light

When you first set eyes on Paris, fleeting visions of New York might beset you - but a closer look exposes much more sophistication - which is certainly no knock on the incomparable Big Apple. The innumerable cafes set Paris apart, as well as the looming presence of the Eiffel Tower and the ambiance it confers on the rest of the city underfoot. 

Although there are prepaid tourist guides and you should consider them, do not miss your chance to amble down the cobbled streets of the Seine River neighborhoods. Besides trying crepes, discovering your own cafe, and seeing the museums, you might also find my favorite bookstores.

Paris. From Discover These Popular Destinations in Europe

Florence: The Little Paradise in the Tuscan Hills

Some call him the greatest artist that has ever lived; although quite subjective, what is not in question is his incomparable skill and the Renaissance era it helped usher in. Michelangelo's greatest works are in the city of Florence, where Nature, itself, also paints the sky with sunsets you’ll never forget. 

Take a tour and visit the Piazza della Signoria and the Piazzale Michelangelo for your art fix, and then make sure to sample the delectable Italian cuisine with dinner reservations at Ristorante La Giostra, or do your own shopping at Mercato Centrale. 

Unlike quite a few other potential vacation destinations, you may find it difficult to rent a vehicle to get around in Florence, as the city ordinance is highly preferential to pedestrians, and oftentimes, only a few vehicles have official permission to navigate the narrow streets. You can, however, always catch a bus, taxi or trolley to your destination. Want to explore? Try to find the hidden secrets of Florence!

Art in Florence. From Discover These Popular Destinations in Europe

The Sights of Barcelona

Barcelona, Spain, has all the small city charm you’d find in European places known for their Neoclassical and Gothic architecture. Additionally, the nearby beaches afford you a wonderful variety of relaxation options while in the city renowned for its romanticism.There’s something in Barcelona for everyone, and with the touring packages, you never have to feel like you’re missing out.

Of course, you don’t need a package to really explore this cosmopolitan city. The bustling street-ways of Las Ramblas, with its innumerable restaurants and markets, represents a whole-day affair. There are also architectural marvels such as La Sagrada Familia and Casa Batlló. Best of all, perhaps, is the food. There’s so much to explore, from meals with deep cultural traditions to snacks and cafes - and don’t forget the markets!

Fresh fruit at a market in Barcelona. From Discover These Popular Destinations in Europe

Have you explored these four eternal cities? What did you love most?