Best Solo Travel Destinations in Europe

Best Solo Travel Destinations in Europe
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There are so many great solo travel destinations in Europe, that it can be hard to know where to visit and why.

Embarking on a solo journey in Europe is a rewarding, enriching experience, more so than travelling with friends or family.

The truth is that there are so many diverse destinations in the continent that are perfect for any type of solo traveller, whether male or female or young or old.

Whether you’re looking for a short city break or an adventure in nature, Europe has something for everyone.

In this travel blog, I’ll explore the top 10 solo travel destinations in Europe, including invaluable travel tips to ensure an unforgettable experience.

 

– Written by Mark Jeavons from Solo Travel Man


PS – Useful Travel Resources to use while heading to Europe to check these Best Solo Travel Destinations in Europe – 


 

Top 10 Solo Travel Destinations in Europe

Pin this Europe Trip Planner featuring the Top Destinations in Europe for Solo Travellers

 

1. Barcelona, Spain

Arguably Europe’s number one tourist city, Barcelona is the perfect solo travel destination in Europe, and one of the Best Places to visit in Spain. There is so much to do and enjoy about this city that you’ll never get bored; it’s a vibrant, modern city full of amazing historical architecture.

The iconic architecture of Antoni Gaudi is everywhere you look, with his most famous construction being the breathtaking Sagrada Familia Basilica, one of the most breathtaking churches you’ll ever see.

This iconic building is a symbol of Barcelona and the most visited tourist attraction in all of Spain, and one of the most popular in Europe too.

Gaudi’s other notable works in Barcelona include Park Güell, which offers panoramic views of the city (it is best to visit the park during the week in the mornings to avoid the many tourists), and Casa Batlló, a building which is considered by many to be Gaudi’s masterpiece.

As well as admiring the beautiful architecture, you can blend into the crowds and do a spot of people watching at the lively Las Ramblas, the main walking street in the city full of restaurants and tourists.

A visit to Barcelona is always a good choice, especially considering its seemingly permanently good weather and temperatures too. It is a captivating, pulsating place that leaves you wanting to return as soon as you leave.

Photo by Logan Armstrong on Unsplash

Barcelona Travel Tips

  • Explore the Gothic Quarter for its narrow streets and hidden gems.
  • Watch a game of football at Barcelona’s incredible stadium – the Camp Nou. Tickets for a game are not cheap, starting around 70 Euros. But the atmosphere within the magnificent stadium (which holds close to 100,000 people) delivers an exceptional experience.
  • If you’re a foodie, then a visit to Barcelona’s main food market – Mercado de La Boqueria, is simply a must.

 

 

 

2. Reykjavik, Iceland

You won’t find a much more unique solo adventure within Europe than heading to Iceland and its capital city; Reykjavik. If you really want to escape society and people in general, then heading into the wilderness in this country will be a massively rewarding experience, and while you are at it, you can do the Golden Circle Iceland Road Trip and tick off one of the Most Scenic Road Trips in Europe.

The nature here is simply unlike anywhere else not only in Europe, but also the world. The land of fire and ice offers stunning landscapes, including waterfalls, geysers, and the mesmerizing Northern Lights (if you visit during the right time in winter season).

From Reykjavik, it’s really easy to either hire a car or travel via bus around the scenic land and forget about the rest of the world for a while.

Photo by Jonatan Pie on Unsplash

Reykjavik Travel Tips 

  • Take a dip in the Blue Lagoon for a rejuvenating spa experience.It’s one of the 25 wonders of the world and bathing in the geothermal seawaters while taking in the breathtaking surrounding landscape is quite an experience.
  • Explore the Golden Circle to witness the country’s awe inspiring natural wonders.This is a 300 kilometre route that includes visits to the country’s three most visited natural attractions; the Geysir Geothermal Area, Gullfoss Waterfall and Thingvellir National Park.
  • After exploring all of the country’s beautiful natural sights, chill out at some of Reykjavik’s many cosy coffee houses to reflect on what is a once in the lifetime solo trip.

 

 

 

3. Dubrovnik, Croatia

Known as the Pearl of the Adriatic, Dubrovnik is Croatia’s number one tourist destination and a popular choice in recent years with tourists, including solo travellers.

Dubrovnik is full of medieval charm and stunning coastal views. The well-preserved city walls and historic Old Town is an absolute delight to walk around. A lot of scenes from the TV series Games of Thrones were filmed here too.

There are also numerous high quality beaches surrounding Dubrovnik, from Betina Cave beach; a beach that is only reachable via canoe, to Sveti Jakov beach which is a secluded gem and arguably the most beautiful beach in all of Dubrovnik.

Dubrovnik has become such a popular destination within Europe that it can become quite overcrowded with tourists during the peak season of the summer months, and is one of the cities that you’ll cover on this 10 Day Balkan Travel Itinerary. A better option would be to visit the city during either the spring or autumn months. You can also expect cheaper flights and accommodation during these periods too.

Photo by Matthias Mullie on Unsplash

Dubrovnik Travel Tips

  • Walk the city walls early in the morning to avoid crowds.Walking the entirety of the city walls takes around an hour and offers the most stunning coastal views, and you get a really good picture of the layout of the old town too.
  • It’s possible to catch a ferry to Lokrum Island, which lies on the horizon not far out from the city and is an ideal tranquil escape from the crowds of tourists.
  • Take a cable car up to the top of Mount Srđ for the best views of the city and Elaphiti Islands.

 

 

 

4. Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, is arguably the most beautiful city in the whole of the UK and a welcome alternative to London. The city is full of stunning gothic architecture, rich history and cultural festivals, making it the perfect destination for any solo traveller.

Edinburgh is very much a walk-able city as well; it’s easy to get from one side to the other in no time, and it also has a very reliable tram and bus system.

Edinburgh Castle is the number one tourist destination in the city. It sits on top of Castle Rock and was once home to Scottish Monarchs. The rest of Edinburgh is a cultural delight, with numerous museums, monuments and top quality restaurants.

It is also surrounded by nature and is located very close to the North Sea. It’s possible to view the entire city and more from on top of the hill known as Arthur’s Seat, which offers incredible panoramic views of the city, the sea and more.

Feel free to use this 7 Day Scotland Travel Itinerary, to plan your trip to Scotland that will start and end in Edinburgh.

Photo by Ben Guerin on Unsplash

Edinburgh Travel Tips

  • The Edinburgh Fringe Festival takes place annually every August, when the city is taken over with countless comedy and performance shows, making for a vibrant arts experience.It is does get very busy indeed during this period however, so make sure you book up accommodation several months in advance.
  • Visit the National Museum of Scotland for a dose of history and culture. It’s free to enter and is full of fascinating major exhibitions throughout the year.
  • Take a day trip from Edinburgh to the Scottish Highlands, home to some of the most beautiful scenic sights anywhere in the world. A drive through Cairngorms National Park, which is one of the Best National Parks in the United Kingdom, is one of the most stunning drives you’ll ever take.

 

 

 

5. Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is one of the cheapest city destination in Europe that has become increasingly popular over the years and is stunningly beautiful. Prague is a charming place; its fairytale-like gothic architecture and rich history make it a top choice for solo travellers.

The city also has several really interesting neighbourhoods that are worth exploring and many great restaurants and bars with live music – and the beer is great too!

Use this Prague City Guide to plan your Solo Travels in one of the Cheapest Destinations in Europe, as you discover places within the city such as the delightful Old Town Square, Prague Castle, and the Charles Bridge create an enchanting atmosphere that’s overly romantic, regardless of whether you’re travelling alone or not.

Photo by Dmitry Goykolov on Unsplash

 

Prague Travel Tips

  • Make sure that you don’t miss the Prague Astronomical Clock, an impressive medieval clock on the front of the Old Town Hall. It dates back to 1410, making it the oldest clock in the world that is still in working condition.
  • The Vltava River at sunset is a perfect time to chill and really admire this beautiful city at the best time of day. It’s the longest river in the country and it’s possible to take a cruise here as well.
  • Prague is known for its many fantastic local markets, which offer a range of food and authentic Czech souvenirs. 

 

 

 

6. Amsterdam, Netherlands

Amsterdam is one of Europe’s best and most visited cities, with roughly 20 million visitors a year. It’s not hard to see why either, with its picturesque canals, historic houses, and vibrant cultural scene that make it an ideal destination for travelling solo in Europe, with the help of this 7 Day Netherlands Travel Itinerary.

It has some of the most interesting museums to rival any other European city as well, with the Anne Frank House and the Van Gogh Museum being the most must-see attractions when visiting.

It’s a very lively city that’s popular with wedding and birthday parties, but as a solo traveller it is easy to blend in with the many tourists. Just be careful when walking around the city of the countless cyclists that will pass you by.

The city has A LOT of bicycle paths and enough bikes for each citizen of the city (18 million to be precise). You’ll soon become an expert in dodging the many cyclists that will pass you by at quite a speed!

Photo by Catalina Fedorova on Unsplash

Amsterdam Travel Tips

  • Visit the Jordaan district in the city centre and visit its trendy boutiques, restaurants and cafes.
  • Canal cruises are really popular in Amsterdam and a great way to get a unique perspective of Amsterdam.
  • If you want to get away from the crowds for a day, then you could always take a short trip to Rotterdam. It only takes around an hour to reach via train and is a much quieter city, but is equally as beautiful. The train journey is lovely and scenic as well, passing by many colourful tulip fields that the Netherlands is famous for.

 

 

 

7. Budapest, Hungary

Known as the ‘Paris of Eastern Europe’, Budapest is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Famous for its thermal baths, beautiful historic architecture and vibrant nightlife, Budapest is a friendly, welcoming city for solo travellers. If you are a planning a trip to Budapest for the first time, you might want to check out this Budapest City Guide for First Time Travellers.

The city is separated in two halves by the Danube River. The one side of the river is known as Buda, which is the quieter and hillier side and has lots of old monuments and great views of the river and looks back on the side of the city; Pest.

Pest is the more central part of the city and livelier at night with many restaurants and bars, including the city’s famous ruin bars. These are former abandoned buildings that have been transformed into trendy bars full of quirky art.

You’ll find some of the Best Street Food in Europe, in the streets of Budapest such as Langos, which you can try along with other delicacies such as Gulas, as recommended in this Budapest Food Guide.

Budapest Travel Tips

  • Relax at one of Budapest’s famous thermal baths, the most famous of all being the Széchenyi Thermal Bath, which is Europe’s largest spa bath and features 3 large outdoor baths, 15 indoor baths as well as spas and steam rooms.
  • It’s possible to take a walk from one side of the city to the other by crossing the Chain Bridge for stunning views of the city.
  • You should definitely not miss out on visiting the Buda Castle and the Fisherman’s Bastion in the Buda part of the city. These are two of the most iconic monuments in the city that date back to the 14th century and feature amazing architecture.

 

 

 

8. Porto, Portugal

Porto is one of the loveliest, picturesque European cities you’ll ever come across. Situated in northern Portugal and based along the Douro River, Porto is famous for its historic architecture, port wine cellars, and friendly atmosphere, and is the starting point of this 10 Day Portugal Travel Itinerary.

The Ribeira district is one of the most beautiful and authentic neighbourhoods in the whole city, while Livraria Lello, known as one of the most beautiful book shops in the whole world, is a book enthusiast’s paradise.

Enjoying some local cuisine at one of the many restaurants that overlook the Douro River is a fantastic experience, especially on a sunny day. The views here are absolutely gorgeous; getting lost down the city’s many winding streets while enjoying the colourful architecture is not a bad way to spend a short break.

Photo by Nick Karvounis on Unsplash

Porto Travel Tips

  • Take a boat cruise along the Douro River for scenic views.
  • Sample local port wine in one of the many historic wine cellars.
  • Wander through the colourful streets of the Ribeira district.

 

 

 

9. Camino de Santiago, Spain

If you’re looking for adventure rather than a city break when in Europe, then there’s no greater trip to be had than walking the Camino de Santiago in northern Spain, which also happens to be one of the Top Places to visit in Spain,

The Camino is a series of pilgrimage routes that all lead to Santiago, and is believed to have been walked by Saint James, with his remains being buried at the Santiago Cathedral.

Nowadays, the Camino has become hugely popular with all walks of life and it’s the perfect trip for a solo traveller. You can choose to walk it alone and it’s really easy to make friends along the way.

There are several different routes throughout Spain and Europe to choose from, with the French Way (or Camino Frances) being the most popular, and starting in the Pyrenees.

Where you start walking on the Camino is completely your choice, you can walk the entirety of one of the routes which takes roughly around a month, or you can just walk 100km or less, whatever is best suited to your fitness level, budget and time available.

Walking the Camino is far from easy, but it is one of the most rewarding, unforgettable journeys you are likely to ever undertake.

Photo by Max Kukurudziak on Unsplash

Camino de Santiago Travel Tips

  • If you decide to do the Camino during the summer months, then be sure to time a visit to the city of Pamplona during its famous running of the bulls festival; the San Fermin festival which takes place every July.
  • You should definitely take some extra time at the cities of Burgos and León when walking the Camino Frances route; these are two fascinating places full of medieval gothic architecture.
  • Once you reach Santiago de Compostela, you may wish to continue walking a couple more days to Finisterre. This municipality is based on the western coast of Galicia and is known as the alternative end point of the Camino, often referred to as: ‘the edge of the world’ as it boasts awesome views of the Atlantic Ocean.

 

10. The Lake District, England

Often referred to as the most beautiful area in all of England, the Lake District in the north of England is the country’s biggest park and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

It’s not difficult to see why it is such a popular destination for over 12 million people per year. The area is full of stunningly beautiful lakes, mountains, hills and picturesque, quaint villages and towns such as Windermere, Keswick and Ullswater.

If you like hiking and in need of a break from busy city vacations, then the Lake District is ideal, especially for solo travellers looking to escape crowded places. It’s not surprising to see that, hiking in Lake District, has been rated as one of the Top Things to do in UK for Solo Travellers.

If you’re feeling adventurous then you could try one of the many outdoor activities at the lakes, such as white water rafting, sailing, paddle boarding or mountain biking.

Photo by Andrew Burridge on Unsplash

Lake District Travel Tips

  • Hike Scafell Pike, England’s highest mountain and take in the breathtaking views.
  • Take a boat tour on one of the many lakes to fully appreciate the beauty that’s on offer.
  • Visit the home of famous children’s author Beatrix Potter, as well as the World of Beatrix Potter exhibition.

 

 

Europe’s diversity guarantees that every solo traveller can find their perfect destination. Whether you’re drawn to the charm of Prague, the incredible otherworldly natural wonders of Iceland, or the cultural richness of Barcelona, the continent offers a plethora of experiences waiting to be explored.

Whatever kind of experience you’re looking for, whether it’s cultural or natural, these best solo travel destinations in Europe will definitely not disappoint.

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