There’s beauty to be found on every continent, but Europe, with its 51 independent countries made up of vastly different landscapes, languages, and time zones, is spoiled with variety. We narrowed it down to 5 spectacular places that will leave you speechless.
Amalfi Coast, Italy
There are a few destinations in the world that make it onto every traveler’s bucket list, and the Amalfi Coast is one of them. From legendary Positano to hilltop Ravello, the glamour of Italy’s most famous peninsula—with its pastel-colored towns cascading down to the Mediterranean, olive groves, and endless limoncello—has not waned for centuries.
Lavender fields that stretch over the horizon are an iconic image of Provence, but there’s far more beauty here than just its sweet-smelling flowers—including Michelin-starred cuisine, art studios used by names like Matisse and Cézanne, and scenic roads that pass by sugar-white beaches, mountain passes, and the glittering blues of the Mediterranean Sea.
The Faroe Islands
They’re calling them the “next Iceland”—a collection of 18 treeless islands somewhere between Iceland and Norway, dominated by nature and far from tourism. Life in the Faroes revolves around the sea, just as the landscape is shaped by it: craggy cliffs carved from the north Atlantic’s strong swells level off into verdant meadows, where colorful cottages and churches disappear and reemerge from the clouds.
The Storr, Scotland
The Isle of Skye, in the far west Scottish Highlands, is home to landscapes so supernatural that it’s become a go-do backdrop for countless fantasy movies. Especially moving are the Storr, a formation of rocky pinnacles that jut out like spikes from a grassy hillside overlooking the island’s rugged coastline. You have to hike to get there, but don’t be deterred by the weather: Scotland’s famous rain and mist make it look that much more magical.
Look past the crowds and you’ll find that one of the most storied cities in the world hasn’t lost an ounce of romance. Cruising the Adriatic lagoon by gondola, taking tours of its historic palazzi, snapping a photo in Piazza San Marco—it’s all been done before, but few spots in the world are as worth braving the masses to experience as this.