Picture yourself traveling alone in Europe. Imagine waking with the sunrise, stepping on to your hotel balcony, and gazing out at the city below — perhaps it is Vienna, Prague, or even Copenhagen? You can smell freshly baked bread on the air, and in the distance, you hear church bells. The day stretches before you, full of possibilities and, best of all, no one to bother you.
Does the above sound like a total nightmare, or more like one of your secret daydreams? Although we wouldn’t admit it to our beloved family and friends, traveling alone is something many of us yearn for. It could be travel is something you always meant to do when you were younger, or you might just be craving some solitude. Regardless, there are few better places to get some ‘me time’ than in Europe. Maybe it’s the centuries-old architecture, charming villages, or drinking wine at 3’oclock in the afternoon, but European countries are some of the best destinations to travel solo. To make your dream closer to a reality, let’s dive into some of the best places to travel alone in Europe.
Best Place for Solo Travelers – Prague
Known as the City of a Hundred Spires, Prague will have you always looking up. A beautiful place to walk and lose yourself in the moment, Prague’s medieval and baroque architecture casts a spell over all who visit it.
What makes Prague one of the best cities in Europe to visit alone? It’s so safe! The Czech Republic has one of the lowest violent crime rates on the planet, and its capital is no exception. Especially for solo female travelers, for whom safety is a concern, a visit to Prague feels very liberating. That said, in any city, whether alone or in a group, it pays to keep your wits about you, particularly at night or on public transport.
Things to Do in Prague for Solo Travelers
Wander the Royal Gardens, Chotek Park, and Letná Hill
A leisurely stroll from Prague Castle, this chain of gardens and parks are the sites of some fascinating history, and offer beautiful outlooks across the city. After visiting a lion’s den and hearing a singing fountain, take in the view with a beer at the Letna Beer Garden.
Celebrate Freedom at the John Lennon Wall
Close to the famous 14th century Charles Bridge, the Lennon Wall represents a more recent era in Prague’s history. After John Lennon died, an anonymous artist painted a portrait of the Beatles’ frontman on the wall. As the Czech Republic became increasingly liberalized in the 1980s, students and other protesters inscribed their grievances again communism on the wall. Today the wall stands as a symbol of peace and freedom. There are often musicians performing in front of it.
Escape the City on a Day Trip
The Czech Republic is a small country—and that means there are plenty of options for solo day trips! The endearing, slightly spooky town of Kutna Hora is just a train ride away and features the Sedlec Ossuary (medieval bone church). Further afield, the UNESCO listed castle at Český Krumlov is a must-see in the Czech Republic. For lovers of nature, there’s some great hiking at Bohemian Switzerland National Park.
Ready to go? Plan your solo trip to Prague.
Best Place for Solo Travelers – Budapest
The capital of Hungary is known as the Pearl of the Danube. Budapest sits right on the famed river, uniting the city of Buda on one bank with that of Pest on the other. Hungary is a very distinct European country with a unique personality. The Hungarian language stands out whenever you hear it, because it bears no similarity to any other nearby tongue.
Budapest is a great city to visit alone because of its blend of relaxation and nightlife. Home to thermal spas like the Szechenyi Thermal Baths, you can treat yourself to some R&R in the day, and then meet some fellow travelers at one of the city’s many bars at night.
Things to Do in Budapest for Solo Travelers
Soak in the Baths
One of Budapest’s top attractions, the city’s ancient thermal baths are the perfect way to pamper yourself during your solo adventure. The Turkish influenced Rudas Baths even offer special days for only male or female bathers. If you’re looking for the most authentic Hungarian experience possible, get to the baths in the early morning—it’ll just be you and the locals. You’ll be able to treat yourself to a full day of relaxation exactly as you want it.
Contemplate the History
Budapest has a long, lively, and at times sad history. As you explore the city and learn about its past, it’s hard not to be moved by the experience. Opposite the stunning Hungarian Parliament building, you may come across a wall riddled with bullet holes. On the banks of the Danube, you will find a long line of empty shoes, a memorial to Jewish people killed under fascism. Your appreciation for Budapest will only deepen as you come to understand the city’s histories.
Savor Some Hungarian Wine at a Ruin Bar
Wine is one of Hungary’s best-kept secrets, and Budapest flows with it. Although Hungary is best known for sweet white wines like Tokaji, be sure to try some reds made from Kékfrankos (literally ‘French blue’ in Hungarian). Budapest is famous for its ruin pubs—basically bars and event spaces inside repurposed old buildings. These stylish, artsy venues are unique to the Hungarian capital, and it would be a shame not to experience one for yourself during your solo adventure. There’s a ruin bar for everyone. So go ahead, belly up to the bar, and enjoy some live music with a glass of the local wine in hand.
Ready to go? Plan your solo trip to Budapest.
Best Place for Solo Travelers – Vienna
Vienna is the regal, refined capital of Austria. Home to some of the greatest minds in history—from Mozart to Beethoven to Freud, Vienna’s rich intellectual and artistic heritage will sweep you up. Teeming with museums and fine dining, classical music venues, and beautiful palaces, Vienna is one of the best places to travel in Europe if you want to indulge in some culture.
One boost for a solo traveler in Vienna is that it’s super easy to navigate. Vienna’s public transport system is excellent, one of the best in Europe. Quick, efficient, and easy to understand, you’ll catch on in no time.
Things to do in Vienna for Solo Travelers
Revel in the Culture at MuseumsQuartier
One of the largest cultural and artistic centres on the planet, MuseumsQuartier is heaven for art lovers. Home to many world-renowned museums like the Leopold Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art, mumok, and much more, this place will keep you busy all day long.
Give Yourself the Royal Treatment at the Schonbrunn Palace and Gardens
For hundreds of years, Vienna was home to the Habsburg family, one of the greatest royal families to ever rule Europe. One of the most famous sights in Vienna, the Baroque Schonbrunn Palace is a must-see. Built as a summer home for the Habsburg monarchy, this lavish complex must be seen to be believed. Take a tour of the interior to immerse yourself in the life of wealthy nobility, and if you’re there during the spring or summer, visit the beautiful gardens and the zoo.
Have Your Cake, and Eat it Too
Coffee and cake is such a point of tradition in Vienna that UNESCO has declared it an integral part of the city’s culture. A moment of repose over an apfelstrudel or slice of Sacher Torte is just what the doctor ordered (or well, maybe not) when you’re traveling for some alone time. Fortunately, with all the sightseeing and walking you’ll be doing, a sweet indulgence once —or perhaps even twice —a day is totally justified.
Ready to go? Plan your solo trip to Vienna.
Best Place for Solo Travelers – Amsterdam
Amsterdam is a laid-back yet lively city that will welcome you with open arms. You’ll marvel at the beauty of the canals that wind their way between the streets, and your mouth will water as you walk past all the cheese shops lining the avenues. One of the most liberal cities in Europe, Amsterdam embraces travelers who just want somewhere to be themselves.
One of the perks of Amsterdam for visitors is that nearly everyone speaks English. The Dutch are some of the best English-speakers in Europe. For those traveling alone, this is a great asset as it is very easy to meet locals. Go to one of the city’s beer bars, order a beer, and see where the evening takes you.
Things to Do for Solo Travelers in Amsterdam
Runaway with Yourself to Zaanse Schans
Zaanse Schans is one of the prettiest towns you ever will see, and let’s be honest, one for your Instagram followers too. Windmills and clogs and colorful houses by a canal? This is about as Holland as it gets.
Cycle Wherever You Please
The best way to explore Amsterdam is by bike! There is no need to take the public transport system if you rent a bicycle for the day. This city has more bikes than people, so do as the locals do. With bike lanes all across the city, you can cycle wherever you like. As if you need more incentive, we should add that Amsterdam is very flat, so you’ll rarely have to pedal uphill.
Meet History at The Rijksmuseum
Lose yourself in Amsterdam’s world-leading home of art and history, the Rijksmuseum. As you gaze at paintings by Flemish greats, including Rembrandt’s ‘The Night Watch’, and Vermeer’s ‘The Milkmaid’, you’ll feel cast back in time to the 17th century. This is one of those museums that is a pleasure to view in solitude – there are so many characters to get to know in its portraits.
Ready to go? Plan your solo trip to Amsterdam.
Best Place for Solo Travelers – Copenhagen
Copenhagen offers chic cosmopolitanism mixed with a cozy, homely atmosphere. It’s the perfect place for introverts who love the feeling of city life. Copenhagen is known as the happiest city on the planet, and the Danish have a way of making everyday moments feel special. From the pickle on your open faced sandwich (otherwise known as a smorrebrod) to the design of a chair, the attention to detail in Copenhagen will make you feel truly cared for.
What Makes Copenhagen so solo-friendly? The atmosphere is very relaxed. The Danes use the word “hygge”, which means a mixture of cozy, relaxed, and comfortable. Everything in this gentle, seaside city seems to better your wellbeing.
Things to Do in Copenhagen for Solo Travelers
Stroll around Nyhavn
Once a main trading port for ships from all over the world, Nyhavn marina has now turned into one of the most popular leisure spots in the city. The streets are crowded with people wandering into bars and restaurants and sitting on the boardwalk having a drink. The perfect place to relax and meet people, Nyhavn is a must-do for any solo traveler.
Take Yourself on a Dinner Date
When traveling by yourself, it can sometimes feel awkward to dine alone at restaurants. This is not the case in Copenhagen! The city is at the centre of a gastronomical boom known as ‘the New Nordic Cuisine’. Cuisine is taken very seriously, and you’ll see diners both alone and in groups all over the city sampling seafood, organic meat, and farm-to-table vegetables.
Roam the Sculptures at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
An architectural masterpiece overlooking the Øresund Sound, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art is feted as one of the most beautiful art museums in the world. The sculpture garden is a special highlight, featuring works by Henry Moore, Jean Arp, and Alexander Calder, set against the backdrop of the ocean. On a summer’s day, you can even take a swim when you’re done.
Ready to go? Plan your solo trip to Copenhagen.
Traveling alone is a rare pleasure in today’s hectic world, and the experience is bound to enrich you. As you can see, there are tons of great options in Europe for solo travel. Wherever you choose to venture, you’ll find yourself happy you made the journey.
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