Some people put off traveling to Europe simply because they fear traveling alone. Although traveling with others has its benefits, don’t be so quick to discount the advantages of traveling solo.
Solo travelers get to go where they want whenever they want without anyone to criticize them. Also, it’s a heck of a lot cheaper flying solo. Thousands of backpackers travel alone in some of Europe’s finest cities every year with no problems.
The park at Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna
If you are considering traveling to Europe in the future, have a look at this list of the top 10 European cities for solo travelers. All of the cities on this list are safe, affordable, and offer great photo ops for solo travelers.
Charles Bridge in Prague, Czech Republic
10. Florence, Italy
Finally, we close our list with one of Italy’s finest cities: Florence. This birthplace of the Renaissance contains some of the West’s most iconic works of art.
Florence in Italy
Whether you go to the Galleria degli Uffizi, take in Michelangelo’s David at the Accademia, or spend a few hours admiring the city’s iconic Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore, you’re sure to find yourself in aesthetic heaven in this historic city. Indeed, the only thing your need to be worried about in this city is “Stendhal Syndrome.”
Florence, city in Italy
Believe it or not, French author Stendhal was so overwhelmed by the art in Florence that he actually experienced numerous fainting spells.
Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy
Sometimes called hyperkulturemia, medical doctors take this disease seriously and recommend all visitors to Florence take long breaks in-between sessions of aesthetic enjoyment.
9. Helsinki, Finland
Sticking to the theme of beautiful Baltic cities, Helsinki has become very popular with solo tourists in recent years. The capital of Finland is certainly one of the safest capitals in all of Europe, and the Finns will go out of their way to help you around this rather tranquil capital.
In case you didn’t know, this entire city is surrounded by vast archipelago. If you’re into adventure, definitely explore these archipelago in the summertime. While you’ll sense a cosmopolitan vibe in this major city, you’ll also feel extremely safe and well connected with nature here.
8. Gdańsk, Poland
Although not as popular as Warsaw, Gdańsk is a favorite Polish travel destination for those in the know. This glorious European city along the Baltic Sea is considered by many one of the most beautiful cities in Poland.
In the main city you’ll discover two of the most highly acclaimed streets in all of Europe: Ulica Długa and Długi Targ. Be sure to take your time walking around this city and, if you feel like splurging a bit, take in a lovely concert at the Polish Baltic Philharmonic.
Gdańsk in Poland
7. Bern, Switzerland
House of Parliament, Bern, Switzerland
The rather small city of Bern is considered by many tourists to be the best-preserved Swiss city. Located along the river Aare, Bern the capital city of Switzerland is home to the famous Museum of Fine Arts as well as the Federal Palace of Switzerland.
As you walk down Bern’s 4 miles of arcaded walkways you’ll soon understand why UNESCO listed this entire city as a World Heritage Site.
Bern, Switzerland at night
6. Lyon, France
Sure, Paris is pretty, but not everything great in France is in the capital city. That’s why we’ve chosen Lyon for our list. Not only is Lyon safer than Paris, it also less cosmopolitan and more quintessentially French.
It’s an absolute delight to stroll the cobblestone streets of the old city and marvel at buildings like the Gothic St. Jean Cathedral. Lyon is the undisputed gastronomic capital of France, so be sure to spend some money for a few fancy meals here.
Lyon in France
5. Reykjavik, Iceland
Are there any Game of Thrones fans out there? Well, if so, then you should schedule a trip to Iceland’s capital city of Reykjavik. Beloved for its distinctive colored housing, Reykjavik is any nature lover’s dream with its gorgeous parks and open areas.
Reykjavik in Iceland
There are also numerous important museums in this capital city telling the long story of Iceland’s almost mythic past. A trip to Iceland will certainly fill you with the spirit of the mighty ancient pagans.
Reykjavik, capital of Iceland
4. Prague, Czech Republic
If you’ve ever heard Má Vlast by Bedrich Smetana, then you know there’s something special about the city of Prague. Located right along the seductive Vltava River, this capital of the Czech Republic boasts cultural gems like Prague Castle and Veletržní Palace.
Prague, Czech Republic
Although not as famous as Vienna, Prague is also well known for its live classical music. Anyone interested in art, music, or great beer will definitely enjoy a solo trip around Prague.
Guard Tower on Charles Bridge in Prague, Czech Republic
3. Edinburgh, Scotland
Scottish people take has great pride in their capital city of Edinburgh. And, honestly, why shouldn’t they?The old town section of this “Athens of the North” is full of architectural treasures like Edinburgh Castle and the Palace of Holyroodhouse.
But don’t think Edinburgh is only for history buffs. Indeed, this city has a thriving nightlife scene and tons of fancy restaurants serving up far more than just haggis and neeps. Once you arrive here, you’ll find it extremely easy to navigate all of the major sites in Auld Reekie on foot.
Edinburgh Castle in Edinburgh, Scotland
2. Oslo, Norway
Oslo Opera House, Oslo, Norway
Oslo is the capital city of Norway and one of the largest cities in all of Scandinavia. People who enjoy the great outdoors will just love Oslo’s location next to some of Norway’s finest fjords and ski slopes.
Oslo, capital of Norway
Art lovers can see the original Scream portrait in Oslo’s National Gallery, while literature buffs can tour the home playwright Henrik Ibsen stayed in for 11 years of his life. Staying in Oslo is also a great way to orient yourselves to Norway before exploring the rest of the northern nation.
Royal Palace, Oslo
1. Vienna, Austria
Aerial view of Vienna
If we had to sum up the Austrian capital in one word, it would probably be “elegance.” After all, this is the land that gave the world the Viennese waltz.
Once you arrive here, order a coffee at the Freud’s Café Landtmann, visit the Habsburgs’ dazzling Schönbrunn Palace, and end your visit with a symphony at the Musikverein. No matter where you go in this capital you’ll find refinement, art, and a high culture.
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