OFFBEAT

Top 5 Up-and-Coming Destinations in Europe

Deepa N

Last updated: May 26, 2017

Author Recommends

Eat

Zarda—Pet Bunara serves one of the best Dalmatian soups, homemade pastas, octopus, and turkey dishes. For dessert, indulge in their Zadar fig cake.

Click

Kuldiga—Make Ventas Rumba the spot for some great sunset shots during winters.

Trivia

Roquefort—Cheese production in the caves of Roquefort happens from January to June.

Shop

Giethoorn—You’d get everything from jewellery to hardware in these shops, but half the charm of shopping in this quaint little town will be the boats you use to get to them in.

Want To Go ? 
   

If Europe’s got a hold on you, try not to give in to the urge of seeing just the Eiffel Tower, London Bridge, or gondolas in Venice. Make your 2017 holiday all about these hot offbeat destinations in Europe. Lose the crowd, give in, and stay mesmerised.

Belgrade, Serbia

belgrade-serbia-europe

History, architecture, leisurely strolls through parks, and unhurried lunches at sidewalk cafes and restaurants – Belgrade has a little something for everyone. Spend hours enjoying the sights around the Danube and Sava Rivers, set aside a day to visit the Belgrade Fortress, or admire the Serbian-Byzantine architecture of St. Sava Temple and Crkva Svetoga Marka.
Learn a thing or two about the legacy of Tesla, the greatest inventor that walked the earth, at the Nikola Tesla Museum. Then walk out into Knez Mihailova, the most beautiful pedestrian street around, lined with charming buildings with shops, bookstores, and restaurants housed in them. End your day at Skadarlija, the vintage street, to experience the bohemian side to this cute little city, as well as its nightlife.

Read more: Offbeat Honeymoon Destinations in Europe

Zadar, Croatia

A tiny town on the north of Dalmatian Coast, Zadar is a relatively undiscovered part of Croatia. The town, with a fascinating slice of history, is paved with white marble stones and straight streets that were first laid out by the Romans, back when the town was conquered by them. Little surprise, therefore, that you’ll see many Roman influences around. However, this serene, sleepy town has had its share of chaos when large areas of it were destroyed by Allied bombing during World War 2. Besides architectural highlights like the Roman ruins and the Franciscan Monastery and Church, Zadar is famous for its sound and light spectacle, the Sea Organ, which transforms the sounds of the waves into melody, and the Greeting to the Sun, a circle of glass that captures daylight and emits it during night.

Giethoorn, Netherlands

giethoorn-netherlands-europe

Referred to as the Venice of the North, Giethoorn is a tiny town in the province of Overijssel in the east of the Netherlands. The city has  no roads at all, only a series of canals and wooden walking bridges! Ah, how like Venice, you’d say. But Giethoorn, despite the similarity, stands apart in its unique design. Most houses in the town sit on picturesque islands of their own! Go around the town in a canoe, what they call the “whisper boats”, and savour the sights around you. Later, you could head to one of the quaint little cafes and restaurants in the town for a sumptuous bite of their authentic cuisines.

Roquefort, France

Reminded you of your favourite pungent blue cheese, didn’t it? Well, that’s because Roquefort Village is where Roquefort cheese, the king of blue cheeses, matures. Make a trip to one of the underground maturing cellars here—formed when the Combalou Mountain collapsed, miraculously leaving behind a cave with natural passageways in it for air to circulate. Help yourself to samples of this pungent delight, as you learn about the legend of how the Roquefort cheese was invented. After you’ve had your fill, walk it all off along the Ladder, Menhir, or Trumpet Trails. So if France on your wish list, then lose Paris and head to this charming little village, with a million aromas in the air.
 

Read more: 2 Lacs Is All You Need to Live Your Europe Dream. Really!

Kuldiga, Latvia

kuldiga-latvia

Walk into this little town in western Latvia and get transported to the 17th century. With a history that dates back to the 13th century, Kuldiga (or Goldingen) is a perfectly preserved medieval town, where romance is mere sigh away! So trot along on cobblestoned streets, gaze in wonder at the beautiful buildings that you pass by, and walk past mesmerising waterfalls. And don’t miss the Ventas Rumba—the widest waterfall in the world at 240 meters width and 2 meters height—on the Venta River. End your day with a stroll on the old Brick Bridge, and watch time stand still.

Read more: Free Things to Do in Europe