by TripAdvisor | Dec 12, 2019 | 3:00 AM
Traveling alone takes you out of your comfort zone and shows you a location in a different light. A solo vacation is about cultivating a unique experience (or many experiences!), and this trend is attracting people of all ages, interests, and genders. At TripAdvisor, we’ve rounded up 7 European getaways perfect for the solo traveler.
#1. Florence, Italy
Everyone’s heard the Doors of Paradise, the Duomo, and Michelangelo’s David are captivating, but in Florence, beauty can sneak up on a traveller unexpectedly. You’ll duck into a random church to escape the heat only to spend two hours staring at an impossibly pure blue in a fresco. Or you’ll consider writing a sonnet about pear gelato. It’s just that kind of place. Don’t miss the sunset over the Arno and the famous wines of the Chianti region just south of town.
#2. Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Amsterdam is truly a biker’s city, although pedaling along the labyrinthine streets can get a little chaotic. Stick to walking and you won’t be disappointed. The gentle canals make a perfect backdrop for exploring the Jordaan and Rembrandtplein square. Pop into the Red Light District if you must—if only so you can say you’ve been there. The Anne Frank House is one of the most moving experiences a traveller can have, and the Van Gogh Museum boasts a sensational collection of works.
#3. Budapest, Hungary
Over 15 million gallons of water bubble daily into Budapest’s 118 springs and boreholes. The city of spas offers an astounding array of baths, from the sparkling Gellert Baths to the vast 1913 neo-baroque Szechenyi Spa to Rudas Spa, a dramatic 16th-century Turkish pool with original Ottoman architecture. The “Queen of the Danube” is also steeped in history, culture and natural beauty. Get your camera ready for the Roman ruins of the Aquincum Museum, Heroes’ Square and Statue Park, and the 300-foot dome of St. Stephen’s Basilica.
#4. Seville, Spain
Originally founded as a Roman city and now home to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Seville is bursting with antique charm. The Alcazar palace complex is a stunning collage of architectural styles, and the Cathedral will impress you with its beauty and its status as the burial site of Christopher Columbus. The Metropol Parasol is the world’s largest wooden structure, a massive mix of grids and swirls that contains a market and a terrace observatory.
#5. Dublin, Ireland
You’ve probably heard that Guinness tastes better in Dublin (fresh from the factory), but what you may not know is that Dublin is a perfect destination for the whole family. No, we’re not suggesting you let the kiddies drink a pint. Instead, take them to the Dublin Zoo, to feed the ducks in Stephen’s Green or on a picnic in Phoenix Park. Scholars enjoy walking in the literary footsteps of such writers as Yeats and Joyce, while discerning shoppers have their pick of designer boutiques.
#6. Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital city, renowned for its heritage, culture and festivals. Take a long walk around the centre to explore the World Heritage Sites of the Old Town and New Town, as well as all the area’s museums and galleries. Then stop for a delicious meal made from fresh Scottish produce before heading out to take in one of Edinburgh’s many events — including the famous summer festivals of culture, or the Winter Festivals of music, light and ceilidhs.
#7. Reykjavik, Iceland
Iceland’s biggest city, Reykjavik bears the distinction of being the world’s northernmost capital, and for virtually every Icelandic visitor it serves as a gateway, just to the city itself or to the rugged adventure options beyond. Founded in the country’s southwest at the end of the 18th century, Reykjavik has been Iceland’s cultural hub ever since. These days, that culture includes a hip and internationally recognised music and arts scene, not to mention a notoriously wild nightlife.