Although there isn’t really a bad time of the year to visit Europe, summer is a particular special time. With the weather warmer and sunnier, festivals and events coming into swing and everyone in a good mood for their summer holidays, there’s definitely a different vibe.
Of course, this is one of the busiest times to visit Europe with the schools being off, but that doesn’t take away from the charm. Many families opt to visit European resorts or head to the beaches leaving the cities full of interrailers, adventures and city-break enthusiasts.
As it’s peak season, the prices can rocket up, but if you’re looking for an affordable way to stay in Europe during the summer, hostels are a great shout. Often with central locations, tour desks, 24hr check ins and great WiFi, they’re an ideal option for travellers of all kinds. If you’re travelling with a group or family, choose a private room or buy out an entire dorm. If you’re rolling solo, make some new friends in the dorm rooms or in the common areas.
Looking to save even more money on your European accommodation? Pick up an annual Hostel Card for just £19.99 (€25) to save up to 20% on dorm beds, private rooms, transfers and excursions all across Europe.
Now, let’s find out more about the best summer destinations in Europe.
Top 5 Best Summer Destinations in Europe
First up we have the Portuguese capital, Lisbon. Nestled on the edge of the Atlantic, Lisbon offers both a city break and a relaxing beach holiday all in one. With pristine sand, watersports including surfing, and plenty of history, culture and architecture to enjoy, it’s got it all.
It’s especially a great spot for fans of good cheese, great wine and beautifully fresh seafood. Lisbon’s coastal location means that it gets a wide variety of amazing produce that pairs perfectly with the near constant sunshine and ocean breezes.
Looking for places to stay in Lisbon on a budget? Check out the Lisbon hostels included on the Hostel Card here.
Home to football champions, a rich maritime history and legendary band, The Beatles, Liverpool is always a fun place to visit, but comes alive in the summer. Take to the historic Albert Docks and waterfront area of the city and wander down the Mersey River. While you’re there, enjoy the numerous free museums and galleries.
Once you’ve had your fill of culture, why not follow it up with a meal and some drinks on one of the many roof terraces in the city? If you’re craving green spaces, head to the gorgeous Sefton Park, enjoy an ice cream, picnic, or just relax on the lush grass. There’s events going on throughout the summer including international music festivals, food festivals, gigs, races and more.
Looking for places to stay in Liverpool on a budget? Check out the Liverpool hostels included on the Hostel Card here.
Looking to spend some time in a stylish city surrounded by beautiful architecture, people and food? Then spending some of your summer in Milan is definitely going to be up your alley. Summer in Italy on the whole is very hot and humid, meaning that in cities like Rome, Naples and Florence, it can be difficult to enjoy yourself and do everything you want to do.
As Milan is further north, it has cooler temperatures but still that quintessential laidback Italian vibe and more than enough sunshine to remind you that it’s holiday season. Explore the historic cathedral, hit the shops or even travel out and hike in the nearby lakes and mountains.
Looking for places to stay in Milan on a budget? Check out the Milan hostels included on the Hostel Card here.
When you’re thinking about destinations to escape to in summer, Germany might not be your first thought. That being said, Berlin becomes a summer holiday haven in the middle of landlocked Europe. Along the banks of the river you’ll find alfresco eateries and bars. The parks are filled with friends and families relaxing and picnicking. There’s even artificial beaches created in the heart of the city.
Combine all of this with all the great historic and cultural attractions that Berlin has to offer, and it’s the perfect spot for your summer vacation. Not to mention the world-class nightlife that has made Berlin a popular destination for travellers from all over the globe.
Looking for places to stay in Berlin on a budget? Check out the Berlin hostels included on the Hostel Card here.
Finally, what’s a European summer holiday list without Greece? Although most people will head out to the Greek islands for the beaches and all-inclusive resorts, the capital is a great place to spend some time and immerse yourself in the history and culture.
You can sit on the harbour and watch the fisherman and pleasure boats bob around in the sea. Maybe get to know a bit more about the Ancient Greeks and their mythology. Alternatively, you can sit on the terraces with a glass of ouzo and a bowl of deliciously fresh olives. There’s a lot to love about this chilled summer vibe, and if you want to head to the islands afterwards, it’s the perfect jumping off point.
Looking for places to stay in Athens on a budget? Check out the Athens hostels included on the Hostel Card here.
Ready to Explore the Best Summer Destinations in Europe?
So, there you have it, the best summer destinations in Europe that you have to visit! From bustling city centres, to riverside wandering, to historic excursions and cultural immersion – you can have it all. If you can’t decide on just one location, why not check out an interrailing pass and check off a few more spots on your European travel bucket list? With so much to see and do, there’s always a new adventure to have in Europe and the sunshine, great food and summer vibes just make it that much sweeter.
What are you waiting for? Grab your Hostel Card and get booking your next trip to Europe!