Blog,  Destination,  Europe,  solo,  Travel

The Best European Cities To Travel Solo in 2024

I love going to European cities, they are so diverse in culture and vibe but in a relatively compact proximity. From my base in the UK I can get really affordable deals. I can be speaking French in the morning, Spanish in the afternoon and Portuguese in the evening! I love it. Don’t let this diversity put you off. Europe has alot to offer. Here let me take you through my escapades into European cities. All with their unique charm and these are only the main ones I have been to there are so many more to see. I have not been to Venice, Praque, Seville, Athens or Vienna, yet!

All great spy or heist movies always features European cities. London, Paris, Madrid, Milan are classic cities that are well trodden and for good reason. There are hidden gems in them all including Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin and Lisbon. These metropolitan centres have alot of charm for a great cityscape, usually with a good mix of people in these capitals. Relatively safe if you keep your wits about you as in any major city. A weekend in this cities is a good starter for the would be solo traveller. Here I will give you a taster of each to whet your appetite to find out more. So let’s begin in no particular order.


London red bus with Big Ben in background

London is the European city that I am most familiar with and by so doing probably take for granted as I can get there at anytime. London, the capital of the United Kingdom, is a bustling crammed with over 12 million people.

Lots of history and iconic sites in a small area such as Big Ben the famous clock towering over the Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, the home of the royal family where you can see changing of the guards, the London Eye for a birds eye view of the city. Trafalgar Square with monuments outside the British Museum where you can see lots of antiquities from foreign lands from Britain’s colonial past. If art is your thing Tate Modern is always a good bet and its free!

Leicester Square has the cinemas where movie premiers take place so if you time your visit right might see a celeb. You can head to Madame Tussauds to take pictures with wax works celebs too! is Piccadilly circus with the famous large advertising screens into the theatreland to see live West End productions such as Lion King and Les Miserable. For food you can head to Soho London’s Chinatown or head to Covent Garden for happy hour cocktails, street food in the markets like Camden or if you want a touch of class head to the Shard at sunset to see the city change from day to night.

London has a great vibe if you are not bothered about hit and miss weather (probably more miss than hit). Of course, if you only speak English, you might be in with a fighting chance but there are lots of accents here its not all pride and prejudice! Getting around is relatively easy using the classic red buses or the underground rail or Tube as its locally know will get you to all the must see sights.


Madrid, the vivacious capital of Spain, with vibrant energy and cultural richness. The city is a treasure trove of iconic landmarks, with the Prado Museum and the sprawling beauty of Retiro Park standing as testaments to its historical and artistic grandeur. Amidst the cobblestone streets and grand boulevards, visitors are treated to an exceptional food scene, particularly renowned for its tapas. Madrid’s culinary offerings are a celebration of flavors, inviting travelers to savor the richness of Spanish gastronomy. So if you are a foodie Madrid is a good bet. I would say Madrid is a great European city with a good mix of culture, architecture and history to keep you entertained for a long weekend break.


Berlin for me was a pleasant surprise. This German city was my first foray into Germany and another first for me I hired a car and drove on the left side instead of the right that I am used to! So I was brave or stupid with my little FIAT among the menacing Audi’s tooting me out the way! Driving here was intense but I survived!! The juxtaposition of the past history and modern life makes for an unexpected Brandenburg Gate monument and the famous Berlin Wall with the artistry I spent some time here admiring the work and in awe of human spirit.

Food wise well its sausage, the famous Bratwurst, chips, gravy and beer, if you go to pub. The food will have you full till next day or order salad if too heavy for you! If that’s your thing then Oktoberfest usual late September to October to go when the famous beer festival takes place. There is a fun loving vibe here and people are friendly. I took my little FIAT out to Krausnick to a indoor Tropical Island resort. It was mahoosive! A full size rain forest several beachy pools, shops you can even do a ballon ride inside. It could be snowing outside you will never know it was awesome!


Ahh Paa-ree ( in my best french accent). The romantic city of Europe you have to see at least once. I thought once was enough until I went a second time and it was love on second sight. I thought I escaped the Parisian allure on most people, I didn’t get the fascination but in the summer walking in the Jardin des Plantes eating a chocolate crepe by the fountain before exploring the Louvre was pure bliss! Visiting the Musee de l’Orangerie was a hidden gem where can see the famous Water Lilies by Claude Monet.

Of course you can walk down the Champs Elysee buy designer treats. Or visit the Eiffel tower but those iconic sites were minor for me. Top tip avoid the queues to the top of the Eiffel tower and head to Montparnasse Tower with no ques a stunning view of Eiffel especially at night. The food is always top notch in Paris and i loved strawberries dipped in dark chocolate cones or must have bread or the macarones. Paris is a walkalble European city and the metro is easy to use so great for travelling alone.


View of Amsterdam buildings with bicycles in foreground.

I absolutely love Amsterdam which is why I have been a few times. This pictureque city of the Netherlands has so much to offer. The vibe is chill and young with a wink of naughtiness thrown in. The Van Gogh Museum is here if you love art. With an interesting twist this city also has drugs and sex but not as you would imagine (or is it just me).

Cannabis is decriminalised (not legal!) here and you can order a hit in a ‘coffeeshop’ just like buying coffee. Careful those cakes may have magic mushrooms baked in! The infamous Red Light District is a spectacle of scantily clad ladies showing their wears or sex shops with live shows. There is the very quirky Sexmuseum Amsterdam not for the squeamish or sensitive.

This liberal vibe comes with lots of regulation and laws in Amsterdam. You have to see for yourself this side of Amsterdam or opt to avoid altogether. Springtime is the famous tulip season is so beautiful the flowers. I also would recommend a canal cruise beautiful to see the city from the water. There are lots of bars and clubs for a thumping nightlife in this city full of fun-loving people out for a good time. A great walkable city where everyone speaks English as well as two or three other languages! I say its a good bet for any adventurous solo traveller.


Beautiful architectural interior of the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II in Milan

Italy has lots of great cities including Rome and Florence which is my actual favourite Italian city. But I thought I would do Milan in this line up as it is so famous. The shopping mecca for anyone that loves designer Italian fashion, with a bit of culture thrown in so you don’t feel like a consumer! Not that you should care. Clothes is to the Italians, what food is to the French, top notch. The quality is unmatched even for those unknown boutique brands the cut and fit has to be perfect.

Before the shopping head to the Piazza del Duomo to see the beautiful Cathedral or Duomo then stroll over to the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, which must be the most beautiful mall you will ever see! Full of designer heavy weights your purse/wallet will be nervous! Get your celine sunglasses on and sit sipping coffee watching people go by. Milan also has a great night life with clubs and bars to choose from although the one I went to had no sitting unless reserved so bear that in mind.


People on Las Ramblas in Barcelona

Barcelona such a vibrant European city with its unique identity! I love it here and been a few times. Of course I head to Las Ramblas to people watch and take in the atmosphere. To find good food I would advise to go off the main parade to the side streets to find hidden local treasures making sure you are safe of course. Las Ramblas can get crowded with tourist so keep your items in front of you and be aware.

Of course if its your first solo trip here go and see Salvador Dali interesting art work at Dali Museum or visit the Piccasso museum. You can’t miss the imposing gothic cathedral, Basilica de Sagrada Familia though its been under repair works for 100 years now! When I go I much rather find a tapas bar and chill out soaking up the vibes head to the beach and get ready for a night time party cruise!


Yellow cable car in the European city of Lisbon

I have said it before Lisbon, the capital of Portugal I consider my spirit city. I wonder why I haven’t been back more often. I am infatuated with Lisbon. Its a compact city that is easy to get around for the complete novice. Maybe its because it was my first solo trip city in Europe that seem to welcome me so seamless I felt like I had been there before. Lisbon has everything to offer, city vibes by the sea, culture, food you name it you can find it here.

The bacalao is my fave to eat a cod fish ‘salad’ for want of a better explanation words just don’t do it justice. Portugal wine is sweet and rich and the dessert pastel de nata is a custard pastry you must try. You can take bus ride out to the Sintra Palace or to a Praia or Beach. Nighttime can be cultured with a traditional live guitarist or full on party mode, your choice. And in Lisbon you really are spoilt for choice.


So let me wrap up this tour of some of Europe’s most enchanting cities. They are must see icons of European and will give you a familiar feel as they are so well known. As a solo traveller you will not feel out of place as these European cities draw millions of tourists from all over the world every year. Getting around is usually a breeze and these cities are used to tourist asking for directions.

I must say for that very reason they are also quite expensive cities. So a long weekend cityscape is enough to see the main sights and try out your solo travelling quest. Then, if like me you find a European city that seems to be your twin flame, you may well return again and again. So what are you waiting for, book that flight, pack that carryon and fall in love with Europe.

Images in this blog maybe from Unsplash I would like to acknowledge all the photographers