9 Underrated Destinations In Europe You Need To Visit
May 7, 2021
Europe is mostly known for its impressive historic sites and monuments, as well as for its dreamy summer destinations. We all know the Eiffel Tower, the coast of Spain and the picturesque towns of Cinque Terre. Yet, lately, I’ve been intrigued by some of the more underrated and non-touristy destinations in Europe. I must say, even as a European citizen, I’m still constantly surprised by what this continent has to offer.
If you feel like you’ve had your fill of the typical tourist attractions, it may be time to explore some of Europe’s hidden gems. Here are 9 underrated (yet surprisingly stunning!) destinations in Europe you need to add to your bucket list!
This post contains affiliate links which means that at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission. I only recommend products I genuinely enjoy and believe in. Thank you so much for your support!
UNDERRATED ISLANDS IN EUROPE
1. SARDINIA, ITALY
Who said you have to venture off to the Caribbean or the Philippines for those tropical island vibes? Sardinia – one of Italy’s larger islands – comes pretty close to paradise if you ask me. This Mediterranean treasure has all the ingredients for the perfect summer vacation: white sand beaches, turquoise water, delicious food, cute old towns,… (and you don’t have to worry about hurricanes or deadly spiders!). Conclusion: if you’ve been looking to visit a tropical destination in Europe, Sardinia is your answer!
2. KEFALONIA, GREECE
Kefalonia isn’t usually the first name that pops up when we think about Greece. Our mind automatically jumps to the most popular destinations such as Athens, Santorini, Mykonos or Corfu. While these places are obviously worth a visit, they can get insanely crowded during summer. For some reason, Kefalonia has managed to remain low-key, despite the fact it’s equally as incredible. Although Kefalonia is still one of the more underrated Greek islands, it has seen an increase in tourism the last few years, so don’t wait too long to book your trip!
3. ELBA, ITALY
Another dream destination in Europe you probably wouldn’t think of visiting, is Elba. You may vaguely remember this as the island Napoleon was banned to (quite the punishment, right??). Elba is located in the region of Tuscany in Italy and its white-sand beaches make me drool even more than its typical Italian cuisine.
4. MADEIRA, PORTUGAL
Madeira is a small Portuguese island situated in the north Atlantic Ocean and perhaps one of the most underrated places in Europe. It’s a hilly volcanic island and because of its lack of sand beaches, it doesn’t have any mass tourism. However, this doesn’t mean this gorgeous island isn’t worth a visit. Expect breathtaking ocean views, epic hiking trails and if you visit Madeira during spring, a million blooming flowers.
UNDERRATED COUNTRIES IN EUROPE
When my sister and I were on vacation in Corfu, we were intrigued by the coastline we continually saw appearing on the horizon. Turns out it was Albania, a country I’d never given a second thought. Kind of ashamed of it now, because it has some of the most diverse landscapes I’ve ever seen: beautiful forests, impressive snow-capped mountains and crystal clear rivers. Albania is perfect for any hiking lover, but it has some stunning beaches as well. Plus, hotels in Albania are super affordable!
Another underrated European destination is Albania’s neighbouring country, Montenegro. It’s a lot smaller but with its green hills, medieval towns and gorgeous blue lakes, you’ll find plenty of things to do and see. Similar to Albania, it’s also one of Europe’s more budget-friendly destinations.
7. BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA
Bosnia & Herzegovina is definitely one of the top underrated countries in Europe that very much deserves your attention. It’s located in the Balkans in South-Eastern Europe and harbours many incredible sights to see. From various waterfalls to bright green mountain rivers to beautiful old castles, Bosnia has it all. Aside from the capital of Sarajevo, Mostar is another city you can’t skip when you’re travelling to Bosnia!
I chose most of these destinations because of their unspoiled and awe-inspiring landscapes, but Estonia appeals to me more for its beautiful capital, Tallinn. I’m definitely more of a nature person, but from time to time I like to go on a city trip and submerge myself in the buzzing city life. Besides, Tallinn during wintertime seems like a sight straight from a fairy tale.
Slovenia is probably most known for Lake Bled, which has definitely gained in popularity over the years, though I feel like it’s a country that’s still often overlooked. For starters, the capital – Ljubljana – is absolutely gorgeous. Aside from its idyllic setting, it has an interesting history, beautiful architecture and it’s classified as a UNESCO City Of Literature. Of course, there are also plenty of options to go hiking and enjoy the magnificent Slovenian nature.
I hope you enjoyed reading about these 9 underrated destinations in Europe and got some inspiration for your next trip! Have you been to any of these places? Let me know in the comments 🙂
Don't forget to share!