So, let’s grab the atlas and start planning for our future travels
I can just imagine how long your travel wish-list must be growing now because I know mine is.
I read through captivating posts on different European destinations, whether they are large cities or quaint villages. There are just so many tempting locations that keep finding their way on to my bucket list.
Our passports sit in our travel drawer, just dying to be used again.
We’ve been lucky enough to visit a number of beautiful and fascinating cities throughout Europe, some bustling with life 24-hours-a-day and others so ancient and demure. All full of incredible history and different cultures to be embraced.
I have chosen a small selection of cities that you’ve probably heard of and a few others that are lesser-known. Each of them full of charm and appeal, and all are overflowing with an intriguing history.
The ancient city of Córdoba has history flowing everywhere, snaking between the well-trodden cobbles, whispering from the golden sandstone walls and peering down from the terracotta-tiled rooftops.
It’s a city that just oozes character.
The Romans undoubtedly left their distinctive mark on Córdoba; however, for me, it’s the awe-inspiring Mezquita that the Moors bestowed, that I found breathtaking. I was lost for words at the beauty of the never-ending forest of ochre and cream arches.
The Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba truly needs to be seen to be believed.
Ahhh the call of Andalucía, I love nothing more than planning a trip and so often I use the DK Eyewitness books. I find them extremely informative, easy to follow and the pictures and maps tempt you into discovering more.
We used a previous version of this book to plan our southern Spanish road trips, now you can grab the revised copy.
The hills are alive with the sound of music, ahh the delightful dulcet tones of Julie Andrews.
Salzburg is a city of elegance, allure and of course the birthplace of the incredible composer, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in 1756.
The UNESCO Historic Centre of Salzburg is so striking. The charming streets are lined with beautiful Baroque architecture, eye-catching façades around every corner and delightful wrought-iron shop signs, to keep the city’s character and spirit alive.
If you've yet to discover Austria, then let's start planning. I find these DK Eyewitness Travel Guides invaluable. They're extremely informative, easy to follow, and the pictures and maps tempt you into discovering more of those fascinating sites.
You can now grab a recently revised copy of this guidebook, so you won't miss a thing.
This historic city was once part of Austria and the Austro-Hungarian Empire, it is only since 1919 that Trento was annexed to Italy.
Trento is full of so much charisma, and it really feels like it hasn’t yet been discovered by tourists. The architecture throughout the city is stunning.
There are ornate façades on noble palazzo’s, marble balconies overlooking ancient streets and scenic frescos painted on the front of historic buildings.
We have created a little YouTube video of Trento. Why not take a look?
Ohh, I fell in love with Croatia a few years ago when we headed there from the UK on a road trip. More specifically, I fell in love with Zadar and the stunning opal blue Dalmatian coastline.
The ancient walled city of Zadar is incredibly historical, from its Roman Forum, St Donatus Church and the glorious Venetian influences throughout Zadar’s cobbled streets and quaint delightful squares.
Zadar has undoubtedly been through some turbulent times over the centuries, and I love how it embraces modern twists into its historic surroundings.
I couldn’t think of a better way of ending a perfect evening than taking a stroll along Riva by the Adriatic Sea while listening to the enchanting Sea Organ and watching the pulsating lights to The Greeting to the Sun.
Zadar is a beautiful city and one I would return to at the drop of a hat.
Again we have created a little YouTube video of Zadar. Why not take a look?
Also, why not subscribe to our YouTube channel and get the latest clips as we post them?
If you've yet to discover the delights of Croatia you're in for a treat. While planning our road trip, I used the DK Eyewitness books. I find them extremely informative, easy to follow and the pictures and maps tempt you into discovering more.
We used a previous version of this book to plan our north to south Croatian road trip, now you can grab the revised copy.
Now we are in Germany, the northwest to be exact, in the delightful city of Bremen.
Just so that you know, Bremen is actually pronounced “Bree-men”, we've always said "Brem-en" – well, not anymore.
Bremen may not necessarily be high on your bucket list; however, if you are looking for a charming German city with plenty of history, stunning architecture and welcoming locals, then I can highly recommend Bremen.
We visited Bremen during the Christmas markets and wouldn’t hesitate to return at any other time of the year as we found there was so much more to discover.
Bremen’s Town Hall (Rathaus) located in the gorgeous Marktplatz is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located all around the square are historic buildings including the Bremen Cathedral, the Parliament Building and also the Roland Statue. Just off of Marktplatz you’ll also find Glockenspiel House, that’s if you don’t hear the 30 glockenspiels chiming before you arrive.
Guimarães is located in northern Portugal, just north of Porto and an extremely historical city. Guimarães was the first capital of Portugal in the 12th century. It’s widely believed that Portugal's first King, Afonso Henriques, was born there.
Once again, we have created a little YouTube video of Guimarães.
We embarked on our Portuguese road trip from the UK, catching a Brittany Ferry to Santander.
However, there are regular flights to Porto and Lisbon, take a look at ebookers.com. Then pop in your location details and Rental Cars will search well-known car hire brands and discover the deals that suit you the best.
A little change from Romania’s capital city of Bucharest and that’s Timișoara in the west of the country.
The colourful city of Timișoara is another of my choices that are overflowing with history. From the changing of occupation during the Middle Ages to the more recent Romanian Revolution in December 1989.
Timișoara was the centre for the street protests that led to the Romanian Revolution and the overthrow of Nicolae Ceaușescu, the leader of the Communist party.
Timișoara’s historic centre has some beautiful squares and recreational gardens to enjoy, as well as the stunning architecture lining the wide streets and boulevards.
Another interesting fact relating to Timișoara’s is that it was the first European city to have its streets illuminated by electric light in 1884.
In 2023 Timișoara will become the next European Capital of Culture.
We’re now off to one of my favourite countries, and that’s France. Heading to the picturesque city of Annecy with its stunning lake and the mountainous scenic backdrop.
Annecy is located in France’s southwest in the Haute-Savoie region and only a few miles from the Swiss border. No wonder fondues are popular here, not that Gary was complaining.
Sitting on an island in the heart of the old town is a 12th-century castle in the Thiou River which now houses the Annecy History museum. Although for a long time it served as a prison and courthouse, until the French Revolution.
And we have a YouTube video of Annecy.
You must stroll along the pedestrianised Rue Sainte-Claire. This picturesque street is charming any day of the week, cafés, boutiques, cobbled lanes, arcades & little squares.
However, on market days, your senses move into overdrive.
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