Experience the living history of the Old Continent
Where in Europe would you like to go?
The reasons to visit Europe are as varied as the array of cultures you’ll find there. You may dream of handmade pasta by the Venetian canals or a fresh Pain au Chocolate at a sidewalk cafe in Paris. Perhaps you fantasize about following the Viking trail to Iceland or diving into the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean? Enjoy the offbeat elegance that connects the Europe of today to the living history within it—from ancient ruins to pulsing cities, lush vineyards to icy peaks, and cathedrals to clubs—whatever you’ve imagined, you’ll find it here.
Nordic adventure is the siren call of Iceland—from the auroras of the northern lights to the glacial fields of Vatnajökull. Pull-on your winter coat and hop on a snowmobile to explore the floating icebergs of Jökulsárlón Lake, or hike the 200-foot cascade of Skógafoss waterfall. After a day of physical activity, rejuvenate with a visit to one of Iceland’s many geothermally-heated baths, and rebuild with some fresh yet hearty Icelandic cuisine. After a plate of charred fish and locally grown veggies, you’ll be ready to check out the night scene of the capital Reykjavik, where laid back bars are the name of the game.
In England, experience eccentricity and sophistication side by side, and wash it all down with a glorious pint at the pub. Everywhere you look, familiar cultural icons pop out: Bearskin hats of the Queen’s Guard, the Union Jack, artwork from The Beatles albums, or the face of Elizabeth II herself on your British pounds. Explore the mysterious sarsens of Stonehenge, the pastoral lands of the Lake District National Park, or the ancient cities of York and Bath. Glide from medieval castles to local pubs to Victorian manors without skipping a beat. Remember, this land is both the epicenter of the world and a respite from it. Take to the left side of the road and make it your own.
There’s more than just kilts and bagpipes in Scotland. Besides its epic landscapes, age-old castles, and—yes—single malt whiskey, there’s an enchanting quality to this country that will have you returning year after year. Stroll down the Royal Mile in the elegant capital Edinburgh. Marvel at the otherworldly landscape at Glencoe, an extraordinary landform that is easily mistakable for New Zealand. Go for a hike on the remote Isle of Skye to undercover idyllic, deserted white beaches. You’ll find it hard not to fall in love with the land of the Scots.
Satisfy your inner connoisseur in France. This land is all about appreciating the crème de la crème—whether it be cheese, wine, or great art. After sampling the rich reds of Bordeaux, be sure to feast your eyes on the epic monuments of Paris—drink champagne at the Eiffel Tower, before taking a stroll around the magical gardens of Versailles. Delight in the peaceful Mediterranean waters of the French Riviera, after a portion of fresh oysters on the oceanfront. Wherever you go, the grand reputation of this romantic land will seem like an undersell—so make the pilgrimage as artists have for centuries to this storied nation.
It’s easy to slow down and enjoy the small things in a country where the small things pack such a punch. A meal of a lifetime to us is just another lunch for Italians, and epic ruins? Well, they’re just part of the cityscape. You may be excited for pizza, pasta, and rich red wine, but be open for surprises in this diverse country. There are truffles to be hunted in Tuscany, seafood to catch on the Sicilian coast, and succulent steak to enjoy in Florence. Wherever your appetite takes you in this Mediterranean crossroads, there’ll be plenty to do and see along the way.
Irish culture is celebrated throughout the world, and for good reason. Here, the traditions are living and all-encompassing. Visit medieval castles in Cork, or enjoy a plate of Boxty Pancakes in Dublin. While the cities have a strong cosmopolitan draw, you can’t leave without visiting the pristine countryside. Travel the Wild Atlantic Way to see the hits of the west coast, from the Cliffs of Moher to the Connemara National Park. As you take in the beauty of the “Emerald Isle”—home to both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland—be sure to make time for a pint of Guinness and friendly locals in a local pub.
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