Traveling through Europe is like opening a jar of candy and being amazed to encounter lots of different tastes and flavors. It is all candy, but so varied and so particular that you do not have time to be bored. Most people think that Europe is the cradle of modern civilization and they are totally right. As the nations collided and formed throughout the years, this space has gained a unique national scent that is more alive than ever.
With so many countries stacked on one continent, it is not that hard to get to see awesome looking places in just a small period of time.
My wanderings through this lovely continent has brought me from the lively France, to the romantic Italy, the hot Spain, the clock-like Germany and finally the rainy England. In all these places I have met nice people and stumbled upon real pieces of architecture and art. Europe is indeed fascinating and discovering it may be a never ending journey.
(Photo credits: Moyan Brenn)
The first country that I visited was France. This is such a well-known destination, so I started out in Paris. This city is probably one of the most beautiful places in the world. It is full of tourists who love to visit the Pompidou Center, Champs Elysees, Cathedral Notre Dame, Arc de Triumph and of course the Eiffel Tower. Out of the large number of museums, I chose the Louvre as I wanted to see the Mona Lisa. In the evening, a cruise on River Seine was highly spectacular.
(Photo Credits: Jose Maria Cuellar)
This hot country is so dear to my heart. I have visited it twice and I loved it to pieces. Madrid is the heart of Spain and it is such a vibrant place. The museums and great monuments are impressive. The Golden Triangle is the place where you want to be if you are eager to see the famous Plaza Mayor, Palacio Real or El Prado. What I loved most about Madrid was its thriving nightlife. There are so many discos and pubs and it is really hard to settle in just one place. As for the food, the tapas are my favorite. I tried as many tapas as my stomach could take and I still craved for more.
(Photo credits: Moyan Brenn)
On the other hand, Barcelona is close to my heart as it is a beautiful work of art in itself. I love roaming around art galleries and this place totally makes me feel at home. Joseph Puig and Antonio Gaudi are my two favorite architects and visiting Barcelona gave me the chance to see their work in all its splendor. The thing that might turn you off is the large number of tourists that flock to visit the main attractions. But you cannot blame them as Barcelona is an intriguing mosaic of great food, psychedelic architecture, festivals, museums and lots of fun. I like walking on Les Ramblas and just admire the sidewalk artists, dancers, jugglers or street musicians.
(photo credits: Trish Hartmann)
I absolutely love this country because the people are so friendly and there is a unique charm about every single part of Italy. Venice is my close-to-heart city. All the canals and gondolas are incredibly romantic. Having a transport system on water is something that is unique and somehow difficult to conceive. I was amazed to see that there was not much of a traffic, so I could enjoy all those peaceful walks. It took me about an hour to cover the entire city. Beside the gondolas, I loved the delicious food that the restaurants serve.
(Photo credits: Moyan Brenn)
Unlike Venice, Rome tends to be a much busier city. The strong point is that it is full of ancient architecture and history. No one should skip visiting the Vatican, the Pantheon or the Coliseum. After a day in Rome, you will not find it that unusual to see an ancient building just at the corner of the street.
(Photo credits: Tim A. Bruening)
Even if this country lacks the exotic look of other European destinations, Germany is an interesting tourist destination. I was impressed by Berlin and by its strong Jewish culture. The places that I found intriguing were the Berliner Dom, Potsdamerplatz, Alexanderplatz, Brandenburg gate and the Berlin wall museum.
(Photo courtesy: charquipunk)
On the other hand, Munich was an experience that I was not ready for. I thought it would be all about culture and history, like Berlin, but I was wrong. This city is so much fun and its busy life will catch you in its swirl. Next time I come to Germany I must visit Bavaria and all the lovely castles that are on my extended bucket list.
(photo credits: Christa Coleman)
For sure, England is a landmark that needs extended time to cover. I took my time to visit London and I do not regret it. The truth is that the weather gave me a little bit of a headache, but I was prepared to deal with the rain whenever it started. Besides the rain, London is a city to die for. In terms of art I consider Tate National galleries as being the perfect place. On the other hand, enjoying a tea in Trafalgar square is a must while you rest a little bit. I decided to walk to the Big Ben and to the Parliament house and I was not sorry one bit. As for the museums, I recommend you to take one day to visit them all. The most famous ones which I liked were Madam Tussauds, British Museum, Horniman and the Science museum. On the other hand, I got all royal and highly impressed by the Buckingham Palace and the beautiful crown jewels hosted by the London Tower. A cruise on the River Thames simply made my day as the skyline of this wonderful city is such a magical sight to wonder at.
I discovered Europe in so many ways that I never thought were possible. Still, there are so many other places and countries to visit. For me this continent is a story that must go on, so I will be back time and again.