Here’s one reason to visit each of Europe’s most popular cities

Arc de Triomphe, Paris, France

Today we’re sharing a guest article written by by Mitchell Madison, a freelance travel writer residing in the UK. Europe’s most popular cities are loaded with things to see and do, but here’s one reason you should visit each of these major European cities.

One reason to visit each of European most popular cities

When you think about traveling to Europe, there are a handful of major cities that come to mind. For a relatively small continent, Europe is overflowing with fascinating urban areas, simultaneously steeped in history while bursting with modern appeal.

Visiting Europe is a no-brainer for anyone with a passion for travel, the hard part is narrowing down which cities to visit and what to do in each.

Planning a trip through Europe comes down to personal preference, however, in the hopes of making the process a little bit easier, here’s one reason you should visit each of Europe’s most popular cities.

London, England

Visit for the sights. That might sound a little obvious, or even a little dull. But of all the wonderful cities in Europe and all their wonderful attractions, few can match London for sightseeing appeal.

Sure, you’ll find ancient appeal in Athens or Rome; you’ll find stunning architecture in Prague and Barcelona; but in London you’ll find that world-renowned landmarks are seldom out of sight. From Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament to Trafalgar Square and the London Eye, there are amazing sights to see at every turn.

Paris, France

Visit for the charm. That’s a fairly broad reason, but one that perfectly suits the French capital. One of the things that makes Paris such a unique place to visit is that it maintains such an irresistibly pleasant character, despite its size.

It may surprise you to learn that, despite its reputation for small cobblestone streets and relaxing cafés, Paris was ranked among the top-30 largest cities in the world by World Atlas – larger than the likes of Chicago, Hyderabad, Madrid, and even Hong Kong!

It’s very rare, and perhaps even unique to find a city of this size that retains this level of charm. Oh, and the sights, food, and drink aren’t bad either!

Barcelona, Spain

Visit for the culture. If you happen to be a culture-oriented traveller – someone who loves experiencing the people, parties, customs, and art of a destination – there may be no better place in Europe for you.

Barcelona has perhaps become most famous for its nightlife, but it’s also one of the most vibrant cities in western Europe when it comes to contemporary art, music festivals, and even shopping.

Venice, Italy

Visit to get lost. That may sound a little bit counter-intuitive when dealing with a renowned travel destination known for amazing historical sights and ancient canals. But in Venice, it makes perfect sense.

Last year, the travel site of Condé Nast did a readers’ choice list of the best cities in the world to visit and kicked off the list with Venice. The reason? To get lost.

As the article put it, there’s no better way to explore this beautiful maze of a city than by simply letting go of your sense of direction and diving in. Rest assured, you won’t stumble on many areas that aren’t gorgeous.

Rome, Italy

 Visit for the art. And history. And architecture. In this powerful city, all can fall under the umbrella of “art,” and really there’s no more compelling reason to travel to Rome.

For fans of history there’s probably no city on the planet as fascinating as Rome, where you can see dozens, if not hundreds, of structures still standing from the days of mankind’s greatest empire.

But history aside, the city is chock full of awe-inspiring art – some in the form of sculptures and paintings crafted hundreds of years ago, and some in the form of structures such as you’ll find in Vatican City or at chapels around the area.

Geneva, Switzerland

Visit for peace and quiet. Sometimes, all you really want is a little peace and quiet, even in a major European city. Geneva may be the perfect destination for this.

In fact, the Irish lottery site Lottoland conducted a poll of UK citizens, asking them where they’d want to live if they won a lottery prize – and Geneva came in third with 11 percent of the vote. The primary reason seemed to be that, by comparison to some of the larger, louder cities on the list (think New York and Sydney), Geneva is “secure and reserved” and offers peace and quiet.

It’s simply a beautiful place to unwind and relax (preferably with some luxury accommodations).

Brussels, Belgium

Visit for the food and drink. Generally speaking, destinations in France, Italy, and Spain tend to dominate conversations about travel for foodies, but in recent years the Belgian capital has made up some serious ground.

As Cheat Sheet put it in an article for its culture section about five great destinations for foodies, Brussels sports more Michelin starred restaurants per head than Paris, in addition to offering a ridiculous array of fine chocolates, famous beers, and everyday cafés. Also known for medieval architecture, it’s a great city to walk around looking for a place to sit down for a drink or a meal.

Read next – Why You Should Visit the Mosel Valley in Germany

Naturally, there are plenty of major European cities that were left off this list, and there are wonderful reasons to visit all of them. But these are some of the destinations that often appeal to western tourists, and each one has its own unique qualities and perks to offer.

About Traveling Canucks

Cam and Nicole Wears are family travel bloggers who live in beautiful Vancouver, British Columbia. A passion for travel and outdoor adventure has lead them to over 70+ countries on 6 continents in the past 10 years. Learn more about their story here. Follow them on Instagram and subscribe to their monthly newsletter.