After searching for the best flight deals to faraway islands, I'll be focusing on Europe today. There are several great places around Europe, you could definitely visit either during spring, summer or autumn and its pretty cheap to get there. City trips, beaches, national parks – there's something for everyone. Croatia, France, Italy, Austria, Switzerland and Slovenia will be in the spotlight. So, lets not waste any more time and get started right away.
What to do:
- Visit the beautiful and historic lakeside village Hallstatt, located in Upper Austria and the Salzkammergut. The market town is nestled between the impressive mountains and the Hallstatt Lake. A Chinese architect enjoyed the quaint and romantic buildings of Hallstatt so much, he built a replica in China after visiting the village.
- Relax on the Danubian-island and enjoy a so-called “Wiener Melange” and some cake inside the traditional and long-established café Prückel in Vienna.
- Go hiking inside of the Dr.Vogelgesang-ravine, a narrow and low couloir with a wooden trail leading along the river. Beautiful, yet not too challenging.
- Visit the Pießling Ursprung, the biggest and strongest karstic spring of Austria that could cover the water demand of 100.000 people during a hot summer day.
- Visit Ramsau in Styria to go hiking. No matter what kind of hiking-experience you have, you'll love it there.
Roundtrip from London to Vienna from March 20 to March 30, for example, are available from only £72 with Easy Jet.
What to do:
- Visit the Provence Départements Vaucluse, Bouches-du-Rhône and Gard. Best time to see the blooming lavender fields of Vaucluse or Valensole is between end of June and mid-August.
- Enjoy the gorgeous landscape of the Luberon-mountains.
- Visit the historic and charming Provence-cities Avignon, Aix-en-Provence and Nîmes.
Flights from London to Marseille during May for a 14-days-trip will cost about £35 with Ryanair. Real Bargain here.
What to do:
- Visit the village Zermatt to get a breathtaking view of the famous Matterhorn.
- Go canoeing or kayaking in historic St.-Ursanne am Doubs.
- Go on a fifty minutes hike to visit the Seealpsee in Appenzell and get an amazing view of the surrounding mountains.
- Enjoy some Mediterranean atmosphere in the beautiful city of Ascona at the Lago Maggiore.
- Visit the crystal clear blue lake (“Blausee”) in the Bernese Oberland. The nature looks like out of a fairytale.
- Hike on hour to the Oeschinen-lake inside the Kandertal. A nice and calm mountain lake, which invites for a cool bath and a following picnic.
A roundtrip from London to Basel with Ryanair during May for 14 days will only cost you approx. £35 – another bargain right away, isn't it?
What to do:
- Visit Venice and enjoy a glass of wine and some canapés, called Cicchets in Italy, in one of the traditional Bácceris, so-called bodegas. Enjoy the famous St. Mark's square during night, when all the crowds are gone. Especially during summer, Venice is best to explore in the morning and late evening, when the tourist crowds are thinning out. Eat great Venetian food at Da Jonny, a traditional trattoria in Castello with fair prices.
- Explore the most beautiful and charming villages of the Cinque Terre, a shoreline along the Italian Riviera – Vernazza and Manarola. Colorful and historic houses, built on the rocks between the ocean and the mountains, cropped with olives and wine. Castle towers, local wine and fantastic ports will await you there.
- Enjoy the Amalfi coast at the gulf of Sorrento in Sorrento. The romantic and narrow alleys of the historic city are absolutely charming and the whole place radiates Mediterranean atmosphere. The Valle dei Mulini (valley of mills) is absolutely worth a visit. You're walking across a bridge named Via Fuorimura above the ruins of old sawmills and washhouses.
Start your trip through Italy in Venice. Monarch air will charge you £30 one-way from London. Best airport to get back to London would be Rome. Ryanair charges only £19 for a one-way ticket. Rates apply to a 14-day-trip.
What to do:
- Slovenia is a paradise for all national park lovers. Explore the impressive Vintgar-ravine, a 4 kilometers long hike on a wooden trail above a dreamy and crystal clear river between the stone walls, near the small village of Bled inside the Triglav national park
- Do an adventurous rafting tour through the river Soca.
- Visit the Škocjan caves. A sweeping cave system which is called the “Grand Canyon of Slovenia”.
- Enjoy the seaport Piran. A beautiful city, right at the ocean with romantic alleys. You can even see Italy and Croatia on a clear day.
- Explore the castle Predjama. An old fortress built inside a cavern of the bordering mountain.
Wizz Air will fly you from London to Ljubljana for only £33 for a 14-day-trip during March.
What to do:
- The Plitvice Lakes National Park is the most beautiful one around Croatia and also the biggest one. Dozens of waterfalls and lakes will await you there.
- Hike through the Paklenica national park inside of the Velebit mountain massif. The park itself is a unique experience with up to 400m high scarps, grottos and caves.
- Enjoy the farmers market Pazar and the fish market Peskarija in Split. The historic district of Split is also good for a shopping spree. Relax in one of the family-run taverns afterwards.
- Traverse on top of the ancient city walls of Dubrovnik. Eat great and local food at the restaurant Dubravka at the gates of the historic district.
- Sunbathe at the lonely beach of Saplunara on the island of Mljet at the Adriatic Sea or enjoy the incredibly blue water of the island Vis.
Fly from London to Dubrovnik. Norwegian will charge you £57 for one week during April.
And that's it. My favorite places to see in Europe in 2017. Best is to get a rental car once you're on the ground and do a little road trip through those countries.
Please note: don't book your rental car right way. Mostly, the rates will be way lower if you're already closer to your vacation date.
The nature, the cities, the atmosphere – all of it will fascinate you for sure and also the flights are incredibly cheap so why not choose Europe for this year's vacation?
Until then, happy traveling.