8 Underrated European Capitals To Add To Your Bucket List

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Jack Krier

We are a travel website sharing city guides, travel inspiration and lots of other articles from all around the world. Our aim is to promote cultured travelling, experiencing a location in its entirety and in an intelligent and respectful manner while adding an adventurous element to it.

London, ParisRome, Vienna, these are usually the capitals that come to mind when drafting a must visit Europe bucket list. While these cities certainly merit their fame, eastwards you will find many underrated European capitals that offer a great amount of amazing sights and should therefore definitely be considered for your next Euro trip. Here are 8 of Europe‘s best kept secrets which will delight you with their authenticity, their cultural wealth and their unexpected beauty.

1. Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina

Many people associate Bosnia & Herzegovina with the brutal civil war that raged throughout the country in the early 90s. What Bosnia should actually be known for, apart from its breathtaking natural beauty, depicted in this photo story, is its amazing capital city.

Sarajevo is one of the most culturally diverse cities in Europe, with Catholicism, Orthodox Christianity & Islam all playing a major role in the city. This diversity is omnipresent in the city and has spawned a unique architectural and cultural variety which has given Sarajevo the nickname ‘Jerusalem of Europe’. In addition to the cultural attractiveness, the Bosnian capital also has a rich food & nightlife scene, blending Balkan, Turkish and Central European elements into a great melting pot.

Read our Sarajevo city guide here

2. Bucharest, Romania

The Romanian capital is one of the largest cities in Eastern Europe and has been nicknamed ‘Little Paris’ thanks to its architectural beauty, its renowned cultural institutions and its large avenues.

Having suffered severe damages over the last century, Bucharest is nowadays quickly reinventing itself without losing its historical charm. Apart from that, communist megalomania is ubiquitous in Bucharest. The city is in fact home to the largest palace in the world and avenues that are so enormous one wonders whether they were built for tanks rather than cars.

Read our Bucharest city guide here

3. Tallinn, Estonia

Tallinn is probably the most underrated city in Europe. The ‘Baltic pearl’ combines charming cobbled alleys and medieval architecture with modern high rises and a buzzing nightlife scene. The Old Town contains several amazing sets of fortifications and some great viewpoints.

The promenades on the Baltic shore are moreover an excellent place for a stroll and lined with beautiful parks. Tallinn’s museums and other cultural institutions are the perfect way to spend your days in the Estonian capital before spending a night out in one of the many nightlife spots this city has to offer.

For more info read our Tallinn city guide here

4. Belgrade, Serbia

The Serbian capital is certainly not a major tourist destination but an extremely interesting city nonetheless. Belgrade is in fact home to a large number of great museums, historical sights and a nightlife scene that smokes most of the competition from Western Europe.

Belgrade is well-known for its ‘splavs’ (immobile party boats on the river) and its many other clubs and bars which have become global references for night owls. The city also has a large, well-maintained fortress and a beautiful Old Town.

For more info read our Belgrade city guide here

5. Ljubljana, Slovenia

The capital city of Slovenia is extremely unknown, cheap and beautiful. Akin to Bratislava, it is firmly undermined by its more popular neighbours, in Ljubljana’s case Italy and Croatia. That’s probably the reason why Ljubljana has remained one of the most underrated European capitals.

The city is in fact dominated by an imposing medieval fortress standing atop a hill which is a great sight in itself but also contains some fabulous museums and a castle. The city moreover offers a wide range of food and nightlife options for very fair prices which is another reason to visit Ljubljana. As for many Central and Eastern European cities, Ljubljana cannot compete with the bigger cities in this area but is still worth a visit thanks to its architectural beauty and its historical sights.

6. Vilnius, Lithuania

The smallest of the three Baltic capitals is without a doubt the least known and the least visited. Don’t be fooled though, Vilnius has a large variety of sights at its disposal which makes the Lithuanian capital one of the most underrated European capitals.

In Vilnius you will find amongst other things a self-proclaimed fun republic called Uzopis, an enormous disused compound of Soviet military vehicles and several shooting ranges where you can test your skills with an AK-47 if you are into this sort of sport.

Read our article on 10 things to do in Vilnius here

7. Warsaw, Poland

Warsaw is not the most visited city in Poland but a very underrated European capital nonetheless. The Polish metropolis has in fact risen from the ashes after the destruction of the Second World War and is now one of the most modern cities in Eastern Europe with a skyline unrivalled in this area.

Warsaw is nowadays an academic, financial and cultural hub and a city on the rise which is why it should definitely be included on your Europe bucket list.

Read our guide on how to spend 48 hours in Warsaw here

8. Bratislava, Slovakia

Bratislava is situated only 80km east of Vienna and yet most people skip this European capital due to its lack of well established sights and mostly due to the fact that it lies in the shadow of its larger neighbours: Vienna, Prague and Budapest. Although Bratislava cannot compete with the aforementioned capitals, the Slovak capital has a beautiful Old Town, a lovely river promenade lined with bars on boats and a stunning castle on the hill.

Bratislava is by and large a very enjoyable city with a rich history and a great food and nightlife scene. After all the great cities of Vienna, Prague, Budapest and the lesser known city of Bratislava were all part of the same country a little over a century ago. This highly intriguing historical heritage makes the largest Slovak city one of the most underrated European capitals.

Find your place to stay in Bratislava here

Read our ViennaPrague and Budapest city guides here

Article originally posted at: https://www.findworldsbeauty.com/8-underrated-european-capitals-to-add-to-your-bucket-list/

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Jack Krier

We are a travel website sharing city guides, travel inspiration and lots of other articles from all around the world. Our aim is to promote cultured travelling, experiencing a location in its entirety and in an intelligent and respectful manner while adding an adventurous element to it.

8 Underrated European Cap…

by Jack Krier time to read: 4 min