From a colorful Nordic village by the water to a romantic fairytale town up in the mountains, these drop-dead gorgeous European destinations definitely belong on top of your travel bucket list!
My favorite thing about Europe is the amazing diversity in architecture and cultural history. No matter which place you decide to visit, they all have such an interesting and colorful story to share with you.
As a kid, I would spend most of my summer traveling through the Eastern and Northern part of Europe with my parents. Coming from a small boring town in the Netherlands, all those gorgeous cities and medieval buildings left quite the impression on me.
I still absolutely love traveling through Europe to discover all the gorgeous hidden gems it has to offer. But for now, let’s start with the 12 most colorful places in Europe!
If you love to be surrounded by mountains (7! of them), the sea, and gorgeous Nordic architecture then this gateway to the Fjords is your ultimate dream destination.
Although Bergen is Norway’s second-largest city, it still has a cozy small-town charm and atmosphere. The quayside with its iconic colorful wooden townhouses is the perfect spot to enjoy some delicious food and soak up the many amazing views.
Bergen looks stunning all throughout the year, but visiting this gorgeous city in Winter does add some extra Viking Feels to it.
Amsterdam is well-known for its artistic cultural heritage, beautiful canal belt, and colorful Golden Age architecture.
There is always something to do or see in Amsterdam, no matter what season you’re visiting. You can explore the canals, bike around the gorgeous parks and neighborhoods and enjoy countless of trendy bars and restaurants.
I’ve been living in Amsterdam for almost 20 years have created loads of handy Amsterdam City Guides to help you discover all the fun hotspots, best bars & restaurants, and most interesting museums.
Santorini is a beautiful traditional Greek island in the middle of the Aegean Sea and by far the most magical destination to put on your travel bucket list.
Imagine charming tiny whitewashed houses, Cycladic style blue-domed churches, pink flowers, gorgeous ancient ruins, and endless vineyards. It’s basically, the perfect location to up your Instagram Game!
With its ideal climate, world-famous sunsets, black volcanic beaches, and crystal clear blue water it’s not hard to see why so many people have fallen in love with this romantic European destination.
This often-overlooked city in Poland is actually one of the most gorgeous and romantic European cities I’ve ever visited.
Due to its interesting history, the colorful architecture in Gdansk is quite remarkable. The many enchanting medieval alleys and tiny handicraft shops are the perfect ingredients for a magical city trip.
The best time to visit Gdansk is in August. During this time you can enjoy the St. Dominic’s Fair, a seven-hundred-year old traditional market where they sell a variety of art, antique, homemade food, and many pretty regional products.
Prague, Czech Republic
Prague is the capital of the Czech Republic and one of those gorgeous cities that immediately takes you back in time.
The gorgeous castle, detailed colorful architecture, and the Old Town Square are just a few of the many highlights. Walking across The 14th Century Charles Bridge during sunset was definitely my favorite experience.
The beautiful historic center of Prague has been included on the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites and there is plenty for you to explore. Make sure to visit the Jewish Quarter and see the gorgeous Astronomical Clock.
Riga is packed with colorful Art Nouveau buildings and many other gorgeous architectural treasures.
There are plenty of things to explore in the Latvian capital, like Europe’s oldest food market and the oldest zoo. The cozy cobblestone streets and colorful squares filled with trendy restaurants, bars, and shops make for a great city trip!
And believe it or not, but Riga is actually very close to the sea and some lovely white beaches. So, make sure to pack your bikini when visiting Riga in summer.
Only 50 miles from London, you will find an amazing little beachside city called Brighton. And this LGBTQ capital of the UK truly displays all the colors of the rainbow.
Brighton acquired quite some Instagram fame with their colorful tiny beach houses. For fun arcade games and fairground rides, you can head over the gorgeous Brighton Palace Pier.
The Lanes are the most important streets in Brighton. The pretty sixteenth-century buildings here are packed with cozy cafés, record stores, and cute little vintage (book) shops.
Burano is the most perfect picturesque island in the Venetian Lagoon and well-known for its bright colorful houses and gorgeous (but very expensive) handmade lace.
You can visit Burano by boat during a day-trip from Venice. But I actually recommend spending the night here. It’s just so lovely to see the villagers enjoy their gorgeous city after the tourists have left.
There is plenty to see and discover in the colorful narrow streets around the tiny harbor. If you love fresh seafood, you will love all the cozy fish restaurants here.
A charming gorgeous old town center, lovely canals, sunny weather and plenty of delicious wine. I’d say those are enough reasons to visit the beautiful country-town Colmar in the Alsace region of France.
Visiting Colmar is a truly unique experience and gives you a fascinating insight into 1.000 years of European history. The cobblestone roads, romantic canals, and century-old half-timbered houses will make you believe you’ve stepped right into a fairytale.
The most picturesque hotspot in Colmar is the world-famous Little Venice. This pretty canal is best seen from the bridge at Quai de la Poissonnerie or during one of the boat tours you can book.
Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic
Karlovy Cary is a gorgeous Spa town situated in Western Bohemia and famous for its numerous hot springs and beautiful baroque buildings and promenades.
You can find many gorgeous hot spring colonnades in Karlovy Vary. Make sure to purchase the local cup so you can fill it up and enjoy some of that glorious spring water.
Karlovy Vary is also pretty famous when it comes to the craft of glassmaking. You can visit the Moser Museum to learn more about the process of glassmaking and view large classic collections of stunning glasswork.
Lisbon is Portugal’s capital city and one of the oldest cities in Europe. The amazing colorful architecture, gorgeous old neighborhoods and close proximity to the ocean make this a very fascinating city to explore.
Lisbon is a city famed for its historic tram lines, which you find all over the city. Just hop on and start exploring the seven hills Lisbon was built on.
For some amazing beach vibes, you can head to Cascais, the most popular beach town near Lisbon. I’m sure you’ll love its charming city center and pretty pastel-colored buildings.
Last, but not least I wanted to add some glamour to this list with the famous and very gorgeous destination Positano.
Located on a hill, this place offers the most amazing views of the colorful wisteria-draped houses, characteristic winding roads, and crystal blue Mediterranean sea.
Positano is a great spot to get a good taste of Italian life. Make sure to leave some room in your suitcase for all the amazing shopping you’ll be doing here!
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That’s a wrap! At least, for now. There are so many other gorgeous colorful places to visit in Europe, that I’m pretty sure that this list will grow even longer in the future.
Let me know your favorite colorful cities in Europe in the comments because you can never get too much wanderlust inspiration, am I right!?