Going Places Educational Travel Blog - The Best Cities in Europe for Architecture Lovers
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January 26, 2017

The Best Cities in Europe for Architecture Lovers

Calling all architecture aficionados! What makes great architecture? Was it innovative for its time? Does it tell a story? While this question may be subjective, the verifiable truth is that Europe is filled with tons of significant architecture. From ancient temples built by the Greeks around 500 BC to Gaudí’s otherworldly masterpiece that remains unfinished to this day, European architecture tells a story that spans thousands of years.

If you have an eye for art and architecture, you’ll love this list of the most architecturally impressive cities in Europe. 

1. Barcelona, Spain

Antoni Gaudí was the architectural mastermind behind many of Barcelona’s “must-see” attractions. From the colorful mosaic benches of Park Güell to the sky scraping towers of Sagrada Familia, Gaudí’s unique architecture continues to inspire artists, astonish visitors and exemplify the charm of Barcelona.

Must see: La Sagrada Familia, Park Güell, Casa Batlló, Casa Milà

Recommended tour: Madrid to Barcelona

Park Güell

La Sagrada Familia

2. Rome, Italy

Early Romans picked up right where the ancient Greek architects left off. It’s astounding to think that the Colosseum, the ginormous amphitheatre that was built over 2,000 years ago, was revolutionary for its time in terms of architecture and engineering.

Must see: Colosseum, Pantheon, Roman Forum

Recommended tour: Venezia, Firenze, Roma!

The Pantheon

The Colosseum 

3. Paris, France

Paris is a dream for architecture lovers. After all, the city is home to the most iconic monument in the world, the Eiffel Tower. The famous art museum Musée du Louvre not only falls heir to Leonardo Da Vinci’s ‘Mona Lisa’ but is an incredible work of art in itself.

Must see: Eiffel Tower, Notre-Dame de Paris, Château de Versailles, Arc de Triomphe, Sacré-Coeur, Musée du Louvre

Recommended tour: La Belle France

Musée du Louvre

Notre-Dame de Paris

4. London, England

London isn’t defined by any particular architectural style. The city is home to some of the world's most striking modern architecture as well as historical monuments like the Tower Bridge and Big Ben.

Must see: Big Ben, Tower Bridge, Westminster Abbey, The Shard

Recommended tour: The London Theatre!

Palace of Westminster & Big Ben

Westminster Abbey

5. Amsterdam, Netherlands

It may not be the first city that comes to mind when you think architecture, but Amsterdam has more historic buildings and sights than any other city in the world and has made an international impact in terms of modern design.

Must see: Rijksmuseum, Royal Palace, Oude Kerk

Recommended tour: Crossroads of Europe


View of the Royal Palace

6. Athens, Greece

This list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning Athens considering ancient Greeks created some of the most emblematic symbols of ancient architecture.

Must see: The Parthenon, Temple of Olympian Zeus, Odeon of Herodes Atticus

Recommended tour: Grecian Odyssey

Temple of Olympian Zeus

The Parthenon

Finally, Germany deserves an honorable mention for all of its storybook castles that aren’t limited to just one city. There are over 20,000 castles in Germany and many of them, including the magnificent Neuschwanstein Castle, put Disney to shame.

Must see: Neuschwanstein Castle near Füssen, Lichtenstein Castle in Württemberg, Hohenzollern Castle near Stuttgart

Recommended tour: Castles in Waltz Time

Neuschwanstein Castle

Hohenzollern Castle

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