A Guide to Visiting the Top 5 European Destinations

Doing a European summer is like a rite of passage for young Australians. With drops in airfare prices and more carriers flying to the popular destinations, we’re travelling now more than ever.

For those that head to Europe in the July/August season, there tends to be a pattern of countries that you hit up, ones that are picture perfect summer destinations. You know the ones. We thought we’d put together a little guide to the top summer destinations with some help from our friends at Peregrine Travel Centre SA.

Croatia

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Crystal clear waters, balmy nights and ancient towns, this is the Mediterranean dream that is Croatia. Quickly becoming one of the hottest summer destinations in Europe, it remains relatively cheaper than its counterparts because they still use their own currency. Fly into port town Split and explore the limestone streets before hitting up one of the incredible national parks like Plitvice Lakes or Krka. Sail your way down the coast – Peregrine will be more than happy to sort you out with a fun sailing tour to get you down there – stop at flashy island Hvar on the way then explore the ancient city walls of Dubrovnik, or as it’s better known: where they film Game of Thrones.

Explore Croatia on this 8 day island hopping adventure – or contact Peregrine about some great Sail Croatia options!

Greek Islands

Navagio Beach, Zakynthos, Greece

Everyone’s already hitting up the big name islands, you know the ones – Mykonos, Santorini, Ios – so why not take this chance to take the road less travelled? Head to Crete, the biggest of all the islands, rent a car and drive to the beaches in the South. This is where Greece source a lot of their fresh produce so you’ll be guaranteed a good meal. Or maybe head to Rhodes for the beach resorts, ancient ruins and remnants of its occupation during the Crusades, plus we’ve been told that on a good day you can see right over to Turkey. Zakynthos is a good choice for its warm embrace of island life and also little gems like Navagio Beach – better known as Shipwreck Cove – Xigia with its sulfuric water and the national marine park, plus possibly the bluest water you’ll ever see. These are obviously just a few but the guys at Peregrine can find you the best island combination based on what you want to do.

If you’re after a different Greece adventure, check out this 9 Day Greece Real Food Adventure.

Spain

Plaza de España, Seville, Spain

Look, everyone’s been to Barcelona and the city grows with tourists every year but it doesn’t mean it’s not worth a visit, if just for the Mercat de la Boqueria alone, aka the best market you’ll ever go to. But there are also a world of possibilities beyond Barcelona. Head south to Granada to see the sprawling hilltops and medieval architecture from its occupation under the Moors. While you’re in the Andalusian region, head to its capital Seville for its palaces, baroque churches, the colossal Gothic Seville Cathedral and its vibrant nightlife and Flamenco clubs. And since you’re heading further south, there’s no reason not to get the guys from Peregrine to book you a ticket across the strait to Morocco as well.

This 15 day Best of Spain tour is perfect for exploring everything Spain has to offer.

Portugal

Porto, Portugal

A recent addition to many Euro vacationers hit lists, Portugal’s popularity is on the rise. From the picturesque cobblestoned streets of Lisbon, filled with trams and people lining up for the infamous pastel de nata (Portuguese egg tart) to the amazing variety of Portuguese wine, there’s so many reasons to love it. Head two hours north to the port town of Porto for its historic alleys, opulent art and architecture and of course, some pretty incredible food and wine. Or if the beach is more your thing, go south towards Lagos where you’ll sure to bump into some other Aussies chasing the surf and just relax for a few days.

Explore Portugal, Spain and Morocco on this 24 day epic adventure.

Italy

Taormina, Sicily, Italy

Where do we even start with Italy? You could spend a whole Summer month here and it wouldn’t be enough. From the North to the South, each region comes with different food, different customs and different sites to see. Start in the North and ride a gondola in Venice before roaming around the Tuscan countryside, with visits to organic wineries before you head to Florence to see the impressive Duomo. Stop into the capital to see the world famous Colosseum and Trevi Fountain – don’t forget to make a wish! Then head South to the Amalfi Coast via Naples where you can try the pizza that allegedly started it all. Once there, you have Positano, Capri, and all the exotic South at your fingertips. If you have time, why not head even further South and stay at quaint little hotels in Sicily – we’d recommend Taormina for the ultimate island life.

The options in Italy are endless – get the full in-depth experience on this 21 day Classic Italy trip or if you are 18-29 you can explore Italy by Rail and for something different for all the vegans out there – yes it is possible to eat vegan – check out this 8 day Italy Vegan Food Adventure.

The friendly team at Peregrine Travel Centre SA can help you with all your travel needs, whether you’re after a group tour, flights, independent travel, travel insurance or more. Their experienced consultants have travelled all over the world and are more than happy to offer their tips and advice for travel to all destinations. Contact them to find out more or like them on Facebook or Instagram for some travel inspiration.

*This content is sponsored by Peregrine Travel Centre SA

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