We have combed all of Europe to find the most charming and colorful old town, those that should be on the radar of any lover of escapades. However, we have not focused on the big names, but on those hidden gems that will leave you with your mouth open. From small villages in the mountains to cities built on cliffs, these are the most beautiful old towns in Europe. Do you sign up for a trip to the past?
1. Discover the alpine charm of Switzerland
Zermatt is perhaps the most beautiful alpine city in Switzerland, and that the competition is quite high. Located in the foothills of the Matterhorn, this picturesque city will make you stop at every moment to take pictures. When you walk through its Hinterdorf (the old town), you will discover a multitude of centuries-old houses and taverns. You can eat so much fondue that you will not be able to get rid of the smell of cheese in a couple of days, but we promise you it’s really worth it.
2. Marvel at the walled city of Montenegro
The world is awakening little by little to the beauty of Montenegro, especially that offered by Kotor, a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Its walled city has hardly changed since the Middle Ages, so get ready to lose yourself in its labyrinth of cobblestone streets. If you manage to escape the charms of the old town, put on the most comfortable footwear you have and explore its walls, which extend up the mountain and offer the best views of the bay and the terracotta rooftops that extend throughout Kotor.
3. Immerse yourself in a fairy tale in the Czech Republic
Český Krumlov is beautiful. Located just three hours south of Prague, the old town of this city is perfect for a day trip if you are visiting the Czech capital. What stands out most of Český Krumlov is the 12th century castle that rises above the city. You will feel in a fairy tale walking among its gardens and its exquisite interior. The picturesque buildings of various architectural styles that flank a curve of the Vltava river add an even more magical atmosphere to it.
4. Discover the little Venice of France
It will be hard to believe that you are in 2019 when you walk through the medieval city of Colmar, a mosaic of colorful wooden houses that run along cobbled streets and beautiful canals. Take the camera in your hand, because you will want to take pictures of each corner. In addition to the beauty of Colmar, the city is also a perfect place to try the famous wine of the region. You can enjoy a couple of glasses of pinot blanc, silvaner and riesling in the local wineries.
5. Immerse yourself in the most colorful part of Italy
It is impossible to choose only one of the Cinque Terre towns ; Fortunately, it is very easy to move between these five pastel-colored fishing villages located on the northwest coast of Italy. Built in defiance of gravity, its streets are lined with traditional cafes and fish restaurants, which are perfect for enjoying local cuisine after a day exploring the region and its incredible coastal roads. Although it may seem that it is quite hidden, it is very easy to get to Cinque Terre from Milan and Florence.
6. Stroll through the jewel of Austria
Located in the heart of Austria, on the shore of a lake surrounded by mountains, Hallstatt offers an idyllic glimpse of alpine life. It is only 1 hour from Salzburg, so if you decide to explore it on a 1-day trip from that city, you will have time to enjoy both its old town and the views from the mountain. If you go adventures, you can walk to the viewpoint; but if you are in total vacation mode, you can also choose to go up the funicular. Choose the option you choose, you will get to take home the best photos of the Hallstatt-Dachstein-Salzkammergut region from this platform built 350 meters above the city.
7. Get to know the medieval capital of Spain
Toledo will impress you even before you set foot in its walled city. Located on the Castilian-La Mancha plateau and on the right bank of the Tagus River, the views of Toledo will leave you speechless as you approach it from Madrid. However, the city is not just beautiful from afar. Known as the “City of the Three Cultures”, Toledo is rich in culture, history, architecture and geographical beauty. In addition, you can satisfy your appetite with its famous marzipan, cheese and meat that the region offers. Sharpen the senses to find the richest smell that comes out of any of the restaurants in the city.
8. Relax in Slovenia
The small Slovenian town of Bled is perfect for those who want to relax. It is full of spas, although its best known part is Lake Bled. Its blue waters, together with its enigmatic island and the mountains that surround it, have attracted tourists for centuries. After a walk around, be sure to head for the hills. From Osojnica, for example, you can enjoy excellent views of the lake and the Julian Alps.