The Best Cities and Towns in Europe
10 Nov. 2016
The Best Cities and Towns in Europe

Simply the Best

Not too long ago I backpacked Europe for a year.  Since then I’ve been back to see many of my favorite places and also explore a few new ones.  All in all, I have been fortunate enough to visit over 30 countries in Europe, many of which I’ve visited multiple times, and have formed opinions about what I think are the best (and worst) that Europe has to offer.

It’s worth noting that the geographical concept of Europe seems easy, but the borders are difficult to accurately define.  Are Albania and Montenegro part of Europe’s?  Probably yes, but what about Moldova?  Russia?  Greenland?  Turkey?  Do you go with the countries that make up the European Union?  It’s a tough call, and right now there isn’t a concrete definition of exactly what countries constitute Europe.  Like Wikipedia, I didn’t include Turkey into the definition, but most Eastern European countries are fair game as far as I’m concerned.  Google these towns and cities, and I think you’ll find them to be A-list worthy!


Rome, Italy

Top 10 Large Cities in Europe (population 1m+)

Rome, Italy (2.75 mil)
Prague, Czech Republic (1.25 mil)
Budapest, Hungary (1.73 mil)
Paris (2.2 mil)
Barcelona (1.62 mil)
St. Petersburg, Russia (4.89 mil)
Moscow, Russia (11.5 mil)
London, England (8.3 mil)
Vienna, Austria (1.73 mil)
Madrid, Spain (3.2 mil)

Honorable Mention: Hamburg, Germany (1.8 mil)


Stockholm, Sweden

Top 10 Medium/Large Cities in Europe (500,000 to 999,999)

Stockholm, Sweden (789k)
Amsterdam, Netherlands (780k)
Krakow, Poland (755k)
Vilnius, Lithuania (535k)
Seville, Spain (702k)
Palermo, Italy (656k)
Copenhagen, Denmark (570k)
Poznan, Poland (552)
Dublin, Ireland (527k)
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina (527k)

Honorable Mention: Wroclaw, Poland (632k), Riga, Latvia (703k)


Edinburgh, Scotland

Top 10 Medium Cities in Europe (250,000 to 499,999)

Edinburgh (495k)
Lyon, France (475k)
Lisbon, Portugal (475k)
Tallinn, Estonia (400k)
Sintra, Portugal (378k)
Florence, Italy (370k)
Nice, France (345k)
Liverpool, England (465k)
Venice, Italy (270k)
Bergen, Norway (258k)

Honorable Mention: Aarhus, Denmark (311k)


Porto, Portugal

Top 10 Small/Medium Cities in Europe (50,000 to 249,999)

Bordeaux, France (236k)
Lübeck, Germany (210k)
Porto, Portugal (208k)
Salzburg, Austria (149k)
Nimes, France (140k)
San Sebastian (186k)
Rekjavik, Iceland (119k)
Bruges, Belgium (116k)
Colmar, France (68k)
Sienna, Italy (52k)

Honorable Mention: Annecy, France (50k), Torun, Poland (205k)


Dubrovnik, Croatia

Top 10 Small Cities in Europe (50,000 to 5,000)

Dubrovnik, Croatia (42k)
Alesund, Norway (42k)
Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany (26k)
Dinant, Belgium (14k)
Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic (14k)
Telc, Czech Republic (6k)
Interlacken (5k)
Bled, Slovenia (5k)
Tenby, Wales (5k)
Rothenberg, Germany (10k)

Honorable Mention: Delft, Netherlands (96k), Ronda, Spain (37k), Monemvasia, Greece (22k), Castiglion Fiorentino, Italy (13k), Cochem, Germany (5k)


Positano, Italy. Amalfi Coast

Top 10 Small Towns/Villages in Europe (5,000 to 1,000)

Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland (4k)
Positano, Italy (4k)
Marsaxlokk, Malta (3k)
Oia, Greece (3k)
Eze, France (3k)
Burano, Italy (3k)
Pucisca, Croatia (2k)
Riomaggiore, Italy (2k)
Gruyeres, Switzerland (2.)
Monterosso al Mare, Italy (2k)

Honorable Mention:, Portree, Scotland (3k), Arosa, Switzerland (2k), Saint-Emilion, France (2k), Bergheim, France (2k), Gruyeres, Switzerland (2k)


Hallstatt, Austria

Top 10 Very Small Towns/Villages in Europe (under 1,000)

Vernazza, Italy (1,000)
Albarracín, Spain (1,000)
Hallstatt, Austria (860)
Folegandros, Greece (765)
Bibury, England (627)
Corniglia (560)
Portofino, Italy (493)
Manarola, Italy (342)
Reine, Norway (329)
Gimmelwald, Switzerland (130)

Honorable Mention: Ittoqqortoormiit, Greenland (452), Monsanto, Portugal (828), Monsaraz, Portugal (782)

Do you have any towns and cities in Europe that are not on this list?  If so let me know, and also why they should be on the list.

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