By Jennifer Jones
We’ll just get to the point – we love, love, love Europe. Of course with its sprawling history, beautiful art and architecture, diverse cuisines, cultures, and landscapes, what’s not to love about this huge and endlessly fascinating area of the world!
No matter if you’re looking to travel to Europe for the first time or making a return trip there, we want to fill you in on some of our favorite ways to explore it.
First up is river cruising. The Danube and Rhine are two of the most breathtaking rivers in the world and they’re a great way to explore many of Europe’s iconic towns and cities. On board your ship you’ll have a unique perspective with all the amenities such as gourmet dining and luxurious accommodations of a land-based resort. The destination options are endless and no matter which you choose, you are assured to see quaint towns, historic icons, and an abundance of natural beauty.
Next, an expertly-led guided tour of Europe is perfect for those that like help along the way and enjoy the company of others. Sit back and enjoy the trip as everything is planned for you. Take the stress out of finding your way around countries with foreign languages such as Italy and France. Leave the driving on unknown roads (and on the opposite side of the road!) in Scotland and Ireland to those who know it well. Better yet, guided tour groups are likely to skip lines at many iconic attractions since the tickets have been pre-purchased.
When it comes to a European vacation, a Mediterranean cruise to hot spots such as Spain and Malta is a great place to start. Taste your way through the La Boqueria market in Barcelona, visit Rome’s legendary Colosseum, see the ancient city of Valletta with its many historic monuments, churches and gardens, go on an epic scenic hike through Italy’s Cinque Terre towns or shop Monaco’s charming boutiques. There are an abundance of itineraries that offer just the right balance of action-packed days in port paired with calm and relaxing days at sea.
If something a bit more off the beaten path is what you are looking for, consider a cruise to the Baltics that includes stops in Scandinavia and Russia. This immersive experience will showcase the region's culture and vibrant landscape. Sail past Norway's majestic fjords, learn about the Vikings in the Viking Ship Museum in Oslo, and witness the once-in-a-lifetime experience of seeing the magical Northern Lights.