Europe is full of delights, culture and fabulous cities, but finding the time to do the whole continent properly is quite unlikely unless you are lucky enough to take a sabbatical. And so, the best way to see everything over a lifetime is to break it down into bite-size chunks.

Western Europe is jam-packed with history and finding a route to make the most of each country can be quite a challenge. However, this route looks like a pretty good chance to get the most from a short trip.

Where to Go

There are all kinds of routes through Europe you could choose but a good way to see a lot is to work either North to South or vice versa. So you could start in England and go across to the Netherlands and then down through Belgium, France, Spain and then across to Portugal. You could extend your trip and include Ireland, Scotland and Wales too.

Many road trips take you to the capital cities but this can be an expensive way to travel. Instead, you should think about where the cultural intrigue is for you and be prepared to step off the beaten path to find something new. Albufeira is a lovely destination in Portugal and Spain is full of fabulous cities like Barcelona, Seville and Bilbao. In France, Marseille is a beautiful city and you could also hop across the border to Monaco if you fancy it. Similarly, Ghent and Brugge are full of fabulous architecture and the more rural regions of the Netherlands are worth exploring too.

How to plan a trip through Western Europe

Sailing at Coniston Water in the Lake District in UK

The UK is also full of delights and a lovely coastal road trip from London to Cornwall is a great way to see a lot of this island. However, you should definitely explore more of the North of England too including Lancashire, Yorkshire and the Lake District for a very different take on England.

How to Get There

If you are coming from the USA, it is likely that you will need to fly into a major city to get the cheapest flight deal. However, once you have arrived in Europe you wonโ€™t have any problems getting about to wherever you fancy.

Europe is remarkably easy to get around as there is a strong road network and plenty of trains to get you wherever you like. There are also lots of cheap flights available if you are looking to spend less time traveling and more time exploring. Do compare travel options to see which are best for you.

Additional Options

To extend your trip just a bit further, you might like to visit some of the Spanish islands off the coast. The Canary Islands are just off the coast of West Africa and offer a fabulous holiday destination with plenty of heat. The Balearic Islands have a reputation for being party islands but there are plenty of more cultural pursuits here too. The Portuguese island of Madeira is also a great destination for wine and cake as well as seafood. You may also wish to visit some of the smaller countries such as Andorra and Luxembourg.

Do you fancy a trip to Europe? Which are the places on your bucket list?

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How to plan a trip through Western Europe