10 romantic travel experiences in Europe. Approved by us, off the beaten path and not only for Valentine's Day!
This is not the generic "most romantic spots in Europe" list. We all know the Parises and the Venices. But have you ever thought about Germany or Romania as countries for a romantic getaway? In this article, we recommend experiences we truly had and enjoyed. And we want you to know that romance can be found in most places when you go through the world with open eyes!
So without further ado, here are our 10 most romantic travel experiences in Europe - ordered from the northernmost to the southernmost because we just couldn't agree on a ranking 😅
Iceland can be an inherently cozy country. With its cold climate, it just inspires you to cuddle up in front of a fireplace with a nice hot drink. The country is also full of hot springs. There is the Blue Lagoon, which is amazing but also full of tourists. There are a lot of other paid hot spring spas where you can get massages and other wellness treatments. There are Instagram-famous, free hot springs like the Seljavallalaug Pool. And then there are a ton of other free hot springs scattered around the country - the ones that you find on hikes or that locals tell you about. So go and find yourself a private hot spring as we did with this amazing hot river!
The Netherlands is destined to be a bicycle destination because they are so flat. Additionally, the infrastructure for bikers is just astounding. There are broad bicycle lanes, whole streets reserved for bikes, and even free garages! Even if you only visit the capital Amsterdam, the bike infrastructure is amazing. But Amsterdam is also super close to the North Sea, where you'll find cycle paths along the coast and through the dunes for kilometers and kilometers. And if you go in spring, you will be rewarded with the most picturesque tulip fields along the way! So you see, the Netherlands is the perfect setting for you and your significant other to have your first romantic outing on a tandem!
Ahh Germany, the country of love. Well, maybe not quite. But an hour train ride south of the capital Berlin, is the Spreewald, a UNESCO biosphere reserve. It's consisting of more than 200 canals, with a total length of 1,300 kilometers, within 484 square kilometers. You can either go on a punt tour, where your captain explains the surrounding nature or rent your own canoe to experience the tranquil surroundings by yourself. You can spot storks, beavers, and rabbits. Along the way, locals sell snacks like the famous Spreewald pickles. So you see, maybe it's not quite Venice but it's very romantic nonetheless.
The British city of Bath with its many intact Georgian buildings is one of the most esthetically pleasing cities in the country if you ask us. And having a traditional British tea time is the most romantic thing you can do in the afternoon in our opinion. But of course, the thing that Bath is famous for are the baths. You can visit the old Roman baths and learn all about how the Romans used to have a spa day. Afterwards, you can wander across the street to the Thermae Bath Spa, where you can soak in Great Britain's only natural hot waters. Bath makes for the perfect British romantic getaway!
If you've been following us for a while, you've probably heard us rave about the Beer Spa in Prague before. What we didn't mention is that we think it's rather romantic. You get your own private room, where you can soak in a tub for two, which is filled with beer of course. You can sweat out all the beer and the sightseeing stress in your own private sauna. And you can relax on a bed of straw watching your own fireplace. Everything without even leaving your private little locked room. So what are you waiting for?
Most of us will agree that Vienna is undoubtedly romantic. The architecture, the castles, the opera, the museums, and the omnipresent Fiakers (how they call horse carriages in Vienna) just radiate romance. But you can also find romance in a place less expected: the amusement park, which is open all year round. There you can find one of the world's oldest Ferris wheels. It was built in 1897 and boasts spectacular views over the whole area. If you're looking for something really special, you can rent a whole wagon for yourself and your significant other to enjoy a breakfast or dinner over the roofs of the Austrian capital.
You probably don't think about romance when you hear the name Bratislava. Maybe you don't even think of anything - or if you've seen the early 2000s comedy Eurotrip you might think of quite the opposite. But you're wrong. When done right, the travel to Bratislava can be quite romantic in itself as you can reach it by boat on the Danube from Vienna. In Bratislava, you'll find a charming old town and a castle overlooking the city and the Danube river. Our highlight was the UFO, an observation tower in the shape of - you guessed it - a UFO. There you can have some of the amazing Slovakian wine and upscale cuisine with caviar, truffle, game, and more. So you see that romance can be found in all places when you walk through the world with open eyes.
Number 8 is not about Venice, it's about its neighbor Chioggia. It has a more than 5-kilometer long beach and the old city center is on an island. The old town features many canals and bridges, just like its neighbor Venice, but much less crowded. And Venice itself is only a short and very scenic boat ride away. Chioggia has an amazing fish market so we recommend renting an apartment with a kitchen, do your own shopping, and have a romantic dinner in your apartment. Of course, Chioggia also has some amazing restaurants, and picnics on the beach are an option too!
You probably don't think about Romania as being particularly romantic, but with the dramatic Carpathian mountains and a plethora of fairytale castles, it actually is. But the highlight is the Danube Delta: you can only reach this biosphere reserve by boat, which makes this place really remote and traditional. The boat ride in itself is a highlight: you'll go through kilometers of untouched land and you'll be able to spot animals like cranes and frogs. The carriage ride itself will lead you through charming settlements and old forests. You'll even have the chance to spot wild horses. And don't miss out on the opportunity to try the local fish - it's amazing! Afterwards, you can take the boat to the beautiful beaches of the Black Sea and relax. All in all, this will be a super romantic trip!
Portugal in itself is a very romantic country. Whether you taste port wine in the hilly streets of Porto, feel like royalty in the palaces of Sintra or go to the westernmost point of the European continent with your loved one - the Algarve in the south of Portugal still is a special place for romance. And we're not only speaking about the stunning cliffs and beaches. You should also visit the hinterland with its cork trees and the charming village of Caldas de Monchique with its healing springs. In our opinion, the most romantic experience in the Algarve is to rent private a boat in Tavira and go to Santa Luzia, the octopus capital of Portugal. The ride is incredibly scenic and the octopus will be the best you have in your life! Additionally, nothing can top the feeling when you arrive at a place with your private boat!