So you are planning a trip to Europe, but you want to visit some less-known places, some hidden gems, off-the-beaten-track locations, or unique places to visit in Europe. I love Europe. There is something about it that makes it magical.
The fact that you can drive two hours and be in a completely different country with a different language and different foods makes it a place I will continue to go back to time and time again.
I thought it would be fun to compile a list of my favorite unique places to visit in Europe. These are my favorite countryside or more remote places to visit.
Places you want to visit when you feel like getting out of the cities and enjoying the beauty Europe has to offer.
Top 5 Countryside Unique Places to Visit in Europe
1. Annecy, France
Annecy is considered the Venice of the Alps with canals running through the city. This village sits on the shore of Lake Annecy, a stunning turquoise-blue body of water.
It’s quite picturesque with its cobblestone streets, canals, and restaurants flowing through the city, and one of the best unique places in Europe.
It’s in a distinctly beautiful location between the lake and the mountains. The perfect place if you want to enjoy nature along with a stroll down some cobblestone streets to enjoy some rosé.
The colorful and unique buildings that line the cobblestone streets make it enjoyable to walk around and explore.
There are also many small bridges around the city that cross the canals of River Thiou.
It truly couldn’t get more beautiful than Annecy.
There is so much to do between wandering the streets, swimming, or walking along Le Pâquier which borders the lake and allows visitors to enjoy the scenery.
You must visit the old town of Annecy with its pastel buildings, bright flowers, and blue water running through the streets creating one of the most photogenic places.
The most famous building in Annecy is the Palais de l’Îsle which is right on the water and dates back to the Middle Ages.
Annecy is truly underrated and unique place to visit in Europe.
It’s similar to Venice but doesn’t get nearly the same amount of hype. It definitely should be added to your unique places to visit in Europe.
2. Cornwall, England
Cornwall is a county on the most Southwest tip of the UK. It has over 400 beautiful beaches and many hidden ones just waiting to be found.
The water is a beautiful turquoise blue with cliffs at the edge of the shore. It’s the only place in the UK that is almost entirely surrounded by the coast.
It has beautiful natural scenery and amazing wildlife.
Cornwall is the perfect place to road trip. There is so much beautiful countryside to enjoy, you will want to have a car.
While in Cornwall, you should check out the Minack Theater which is an outdoor theater carved out of cliffs on the edge of the ocean.
There are many ancient structures to explore including medieval fortresses and sea forts all over the county.
Some of the villages of Cornwall country are very quaint and offer a relaxed and authentic experience.
The food in Cornwall is delicious, especially the famous pasty which is a Cornish pastry filled with beef and vegetables in a turnover-shaped baked shortcrust.
Cornwall has a strong maritime past including stories of shipwrecks and smuggling.
It has a fascinating history and culture unlike anywhere else in the UK which makes it all the more special.
The weather is great and the views are even better. This underrated and unique place in Europe should be added to your travel list.
3. Lake Bled, Slovenia
Among the list of unique places to visit in Europe is Lake Bled. It is something out of a fairytale. Truly picturesque.
Gaining popularity as more and more people are wanting to travel to hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path places, Lake Bled is somewhere everyone needs to visit.
It is full of fun-filled outdoor activities that everyone can enjoy. From biking to hiking, swimming to boating, and even skiing in the winter. It is perfect for anyone wanting to be more active during their vacation.
Lake Bled is a quick 1-hour bus ride from the capital city of Ljubljana, which makes it perfect for a quick day trip if you are short on time.
However, I highly recommend spending a few days here, especially if you are looking to unwind.
It is so easy to get caught up in the beauty of this place and be transformed into another world. Need a guide for Lake Bled before you go.
4. Gorges du Verdon, France
I love the south of France. It is absolutely beautiful, with so much to see and do. From wine tasting in Provence to exploring the streets of Monaco it is easy to go to the south of France and not be bored.
There are so many fun cities to explore and see. Besides the beautiful cities, coastal towns, and wine tasting it is also home to Gorges du Verdon. It is a beautiful canyon and home to the deepest gorge in France.
If you are into hiking, biking, bird watching, kayaking or boating then you will want to make the trip to Verdon. It is the perfect place to add to any road trip in France.
Gorges du Verdon is a quick day trip from Nice.
It is perfect for a day or if you are looking to escape the busy city life, it is the perfect place to camp out and just unwind.
5. Algarve, Portugal
The Algarve is a place like no other. It is a unique place to visit in Europe, a place like nowhere else on earth. It is full of red-like cliff mountains that line the coastline.
They are stunning to hike, explore and pose for beautiful pictures.
It is also full of beautiful beaches that you can enjoy year-round. Once referred to as the “End of the World”, because it was thought to have been when we thought the world was flat.
People would come up and sit on the cliffs of the Algarve and stare at the ocean thinking that is where the world ended.
Today it is far more popular and desired for its warm weather, beautiful beaches, and surfable waves.
Any surfers that is brave enough to embrace the cold water will want to head to the Algarve and conquer the pumping waves it has to offer.
Unique places to visit in Europe
Even though Europe is relatively small compared to the United States it is still jammed packed with so many places to see.
Full of educational cities to visit, historic landmarks, and breathtaking landscapes.
Once you head to Europe you will soon realize that you will want to continue to return to visit all that place that you missed.