Posted by on May 21, 2017

5 Cities In Europe

That Surprised Me


These are five places in Europe that I hadn’t set out to visit originally, but after exploring them, they really took me by surprise. Like every place you visit for the first time, you hate to leave and there is always something more to see or do there. These places are ones that I hadn’t originally planned on seeing, so my time at each of them was limited and or I was just passing through. Also, I am a backpacker on a budget. These were just the things I did, and the things I enjoyed most.

1. Krakow, Poland

Krakow, Poland

Why I stopped here and for how long:

3 Days, 2 Nights – After seeing and going on a Dachau Concentration Camp tour near Munich, there was no way I was going travel Europe and NOT go to Auschwitz. To do this I stayed in Krakow, Poland for 3 days.

Why I liked it:

I solely went here to go on one of the Auschwitz guided tours. I was surprised by how much more this city has to offer. It has great history and an artistic, cultural vibe. A lot of Medieval and Renaissance art and architecture here.

What I did here:

  • Went to a chocolate factory and ate/drank pure melted white and milk chocolate (Krakowska Manufaktura Czekolady)
  • Polish Pizza Bread called Zapiekanka
  • Explored the little streets and churches
  • Had the BEST ice cream I’ve ever had…yes, I thought it was better than all the gelato I had in Italy (Lody Tradycyjne)
  • Did the “Free Walking Tour” around the city that starts at St Mary’s
  • Visited St. Peter and Paul, attended one of their church services
  • Visited Auschwitz
  • Attended an Arts Festival and saw an awesome free circus show in the middle of the city’s main square

2. Prague, Check Republic

Prague, Check Republic

Why I stopped here:

3 Days, 2 Nights – To meet up with a group of friends that were traveling Europe at the same time. Happened to be on my way from Berlin to Munich.

Why I liked it:

A lot of history. Beautiful architecture. Clean city.

What I did here:

  • Ate the Nutella cinnamon roll things called Trdelnik
  • Went on a day trip to Kutna Hora and saw the Bone Church, Cathedral of St Barbra, Royal Mint/residence of the king and other sights.
  • Ate dinner had drinks in the square
  • Sunset from this bridge looking at Charles Bridge
  • Burgers and Cocktails at the Hemingway Bar
  • Traditional Chzech Dumplings (Knedliky) with pork
  • Climbed the tower of The Astronomical Clock
  • Explored a small food market at Republic Square

3. Vienna, Austria

Vienna, Austria

Why I stopped here:

3 Days, 2 Nights – On my way to Budapest from Munich. A friend recommended that I stop here.

Why I liked it:

Clean city, beautiful architecture. A lot to do here involving the cities art and music history. Good food, cake, and coffee.

What I did here:

  • Toured the city (Rick Steve’s Audio Tour)
  • Ate breakfast at Demel Café, soft boiled egg coffee and Sachertorte
  • Shopping at the Central Station
  • Free organ concert at St Peter Church
  • Sisi Museum listening tour
  • Ate the best and hugest wiener schnitzel at Figlmuller
  • Went to a free music movie festival at the city hall square
  • Coffee and Sachertorte (Chocolate cake) from Aida

4. La Spiezia, Italy

5 TerreWhy I stopped here:

3 Days, 2 Nights – Came from Monte Carlo to visit the Cinque Terre.

Why I liked it:

Easy access to the 5Terre, Cute town, nice people. My fist stop in Italy. Pizza, Gelato, Wine. The atmosphere and closeness to the 5 Terre.

What I did here:

  • Walked the main city strip and ate Gelato
  • Visited the 5 Terre!!
  • Bought a sim card for my phone
  • Ate AMAZING Pesto Pizza at La Pia Centenaria
  • Stayed in a hostel that was basically my own apartment with a balcony and no other guest.

5. Liverpool, England


Why I stopped here:

1 Night – On my way to London from Dublin, I needed a place to stay on my way to London. I stayed in the city for less than 24 hours. Upon leaving the city, I wish I had had more time to explore this city.

Why I liked it:

This was my first taste of England. The musical history of the Beatles. The nightlife reminded me a lot of New Orleans, maybe that’s why I liked it so much.

What I did here:

**Disclaimer: I in no way claim to think I know the best places and things to do while traveling. I kind of just go with it, and appreciate the fact that I can do it. Don’t just copy me, use this as a resource for some ideas, and then go and make your own plan.

5 cities in Europe