By DANIEL HOGAN
Europe is a continent sized adventure land, mesmerizing idealistic tourists with the promise of history, romance, and memories to last a lifetime. With so many enticing options, planning your trip across the pond can be overwhelming. Here are a few places that are sure to captivate your adventurous spirit and exceed your expectations for the ultimate European vacation!
Las Ramblas (Barcelona)
The energetic atmosphere and cultural vibe filling Las Ramblas makes it one of the most captivating streets in Barcelona. It is not only a beautiful avenue, outlined with towering trees and ornate buildings, but a popular shopping quarter. Local and internationally known shops and stores, like Zara, line the outskirts of Las Ramblas, which is always filled with locals, tourists, and those simply out for a stroll. One of the key attractions on Las Ramblas is La Boqueria, an outdoor market offering specialty foods, desserts and fruit juices. After spending a day of shopping on Las Ramblas, La Boqueria is the perfect location to rejuvenate during lunch and experience the local culture.
Nestled in the heart of Amsterdam, Vondelpark is the city’s largest park, boasting a bike trail, multiple ponds, four restaurants, and stunning grassy fields. Thousands of locals, tourists, and students flock to Vondelpark daily, soaking up the sun’s heat in a relaxed, outdoor setting. Groups of friends are always seen playing soccer on the grassy landscape or riding bikes around the park’s outer path. During your European adventure, Vondelpark should definitely be on your list of things to do in Amsterdam.
A signature to Bavarian culture is the beer and Hofbräuhaus is a historic landmark in Munich combining this German tradition with bratwurst, pretzels, and good company. The moment you step into the doors of Hofbräuhaus, sounds of a Bavarian band and guests singing national songs ring through your ears. The ceiling is adorned with elaborate paintings of flowers while waitresses, donning traditional Bavarian dress, weave through the crowds selling giant pretzels to patrons. A “come as you are” mentality fills the atmosphere of Hofbräuhaus. Rather than being seated by a waitress, guests are welcome to sit at any one of Hofbräuhaus’ long tables, fostering a friendly environment of mutiple nationalities. For things to do in Munich, Hofbräuhaus should definitely be at the top of your list.
Piazzale Michelangelo (Florence)
Perched upon a hill overlooking the entire Florentine valley, Piazzale Michelangelo is one of Florence’s most unique and beautiful squares because of its overarching view. Although the square is located a bit outside the city’s center, about a 10-minute cab drive, it is the perfect location to relax with friends over a bottle of wine while admiring the Florentine landscape. The panorama is especially striking just before sunset, when guests see Florence dazzling in lights. Though Piazzale Michelangelo is mainly a tourist hub, with only a few locals, it is definitely one of the most spectacular places to visit Florence.
Daniel Hogan is a writer at Party Earth - a global media and entertainment company that publishes reviews and listings of the best social experiences around the world including: things to do in Amsterdam, beaches in Ibiza, plazas in Rome, bars in Los Angeles, parks in New York, festivals and concerts everywhere, and more.