10 Picturesque Towns in Europe That Offer Budget Vacations

From gorgeous sandy beaches to rolling hills and mountains to fantastic historical attractions, Europe has some amazing tourist destinations that offer it all for everyone. But some places, especially world famous cities, can be expensive to explore. Travelers may need to think outside the box and visit places off the beaten path instead of the more popular places like Paris. Tourists will even find budget vacations in major cities. Otherwise, there are quaint towns in Europe with all the European charm, and travelers won’t need to break their wallets to experience the best vacation. Vacationers will find amazing culture, rich history, stunning architecture, and picture-perfect food scenes in these cities. Here are the 10 picturesque towns in Europe that offer budget vacations.



ten Budapest, Hungary

Budapest is popular for offering budget vacations in Europe. Although it has become more expensive over the years, the Hungarian capital is still full of activities for holidaymakers traveling to Europe on a budget. Whether it’s sightseeing, public transportation, affordable hotel rooms, or finding cheap food, it’s possible to leave this beautiful city without spending a dime. Its riverfront is known to be more expensive, but travelers can still explore the area on foot and join free walking tours. As for accommodation, visitors will find plenty of hostels costing as little as $8 on the central side of town. You can also choose to spend your nights in arrondissements VII, IX or XI, which offer very affordable hotel rates.

Related: 10 Airbnb rentals in Budapest for a romantic vacation

9 Vilnius, Lithuania

Slightly less touristy than its neighbors to the east, Vilnius is packed with incredible art, rich history and several fun adventures along the way – and visitors won’t have to worry about their budget. Its old town, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994, has attracted the attention of many tourists with its stunning architecture. The Cathedral Square, Three Crosses monument and St. Anne’s Church are some of the must-see attractions in this magnificent city. Although this picturesque city has always been overlooked in favor of other Baltic capitals, it is one of the most impressive destinations to consider in Europe, especially on a budget visit.


8 Krakow, Poland

Popular for its beautiful architecture and historical landmarks, Krakow is one of Europe’s must-sees. Considered home to the most clubs and pubs on the planet, one of Krakow’s main draws is its amazing, yet affordable, nightlife. Most of its nightlife hotspots are located in the Old Town and Kazimierz, one of the city’s historic districts. Krakow beers are also believed to be the cheapest in Europe. Krakow is definitely one of the picturesque European cities offering economical vacations.

seven Riga, Latvia

Riga, the capital of Latvia, has an incredibly creative scene, as evidenced by its superb galleries and, in general, a thriving art scene. The place is full of beautiful historic buildings with stunning architecture, most of which are located in its charming old town. The restaurants located here are a bit pricey, but the attractions are much more affordable. The magnificent Sun Museum and the Porcelain Museum are among the best places to visit. You can also head to its central market and have fun buying affordable products. Travelers will find locally prepared meals at affordable prices.


6 Sofia, Bulgaria

Located in the heart of western Bulgaria, Sofia is ridiculously cheap, but that doesn’t lower its standards as a European tourist destination. It is one of the oldest cities in Europe and is home to an incredible long history, dating back to the 4th century. Don’t leave the city without visiting the historic Boyana Church and St. George’s Rotunda. The city has several multi-star hotels, offering reasonable rates, as well as plenty of cheaper options and upscale restaurants serving the best of authentic Bulgarian cuisine.

5 Porto, Portugal

Recognized worldwide for its Port wine, Porto is an amazing destination that offers surprisingly budget-friendly vacations to visitors. Surrounded by stunning landscapes and gorgeous beaches, Porto is famous for its picturesque old town, located on the beautiful Douro River. Travelers will find several Baroque churches and beautiful arts, venues and other colorful buildings spread across this magnificent city, which they can explore without spending too much. Porto’s food scene is breathtaking, home to some of the freshest and most impressive seafood.


4 Lisbon, Portugal

Although Lisbon may not seem like a place to offer budget vacations, it is in fact possible to explore the city on a shoestring budget. The city offers some of the cheapest accommodation options and it is very easy to find a hotel for less than $15 per night. The Independente Hostel offers accommodation for as little as $12, and travelers will find a free breakfast included in the deal. Many restaurants serve authentic Portuguese cuisine spread throughout the city. Plus, most Lisbon attractions are free on Sundays. Lisbon is not as expensive as everyone thinks.


3 Berlin, Germany

Boasting contemporary architecture, an incredible gallery and a fantastic food scene, Berlin is one of the best destinations in Europe and very affordable. As a world-renowned hiking destination, Berlin offers several budget accommodation options, no matter which neighborhood you’re visiting. A dorm bed will cost as little as $14, while a private room will cost around $50, depending on the time of year. Plus, Berlin’s international cuisine is affordable and delicious.

Related: Eat at these 10 best restaurants in Berlin

2 Bucharest, Romania

Almost every traveler will find Bucharest a less expensive destination offering a budget vacation in Europe. Bucharest offers many accommodation options that suit travelers of all budgets. Visitors will find great hostels, budget hotels, and Airbnb rentals offered at reasonable prices. When it comes to getting around the Romanian capital, there are several transport options. Taxis are affordable and can cost less than $10, but public transportation is much cheaper.


1 Belgrade, Serbia

Belgrade is super cheap and is considered one of the most affordable European destinations to consider, especially in the fall. Famous for its lively nightlife, Belgrade is full of many clubs, accessible at a lower cost. The nightlife in Belgrade never stops and the food scene is amazing. Moreover, the city has many attractions to explore, including the Belgrade Fortress, one of the most important monuments in Serbia. Belgrade is a paradise for naturists, as there are parks almost everywhere. The city never sleeps and you can walk anywhere and anytime in complete safety.

About John McTaggart

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