When I think of Europe I think of history, culture, and beautiful beaches – if you’re lucky you’ll find all three – here are some of the best destinations from my European itinerary

Best for unique surroundings

For a truly unique destination, Venice is hard to beat. You’ll enjoy iconic vistas like the Doges Palace and St. Mark’s square, as well as seeing the magic of the Rialto Bridge, lined with vendors selling their wares just as they did in times gone by.

Away from the main tourist trail, you can discover places like Dorsoduro, home to the student quarter and some of Venice’s best-loved eateries or take a trip to Murano and enjoy the famous glassmaking. For a spot of sunbathing, head to the Lido.

Best for history with a twist

Athens is the birthplace of democracy, and you’ll see ancient monuments at every turn, some that tell the story of ancient gods, and many that show the vital role Athens played in shaping the modern world.

The streets of Athens are vibrant, beautiful, and bursting with energy. To get a glimpse of modern Athenian culture, take a street art tour through the quirky area of Psirri, and to enjoy a meal with one of the most memorable views in the world head up to a rooftop bar, and marvel at the majesty of the Acropolis. You can round off your trip with a trip to the Glyfada on the Athens Riviera, or head out to Cape Sounio and enjoy soaking up the sun under the Temple of Poseidon.

Best for fabulous food and hilltop villages

The city of Rovinj is perfectly placed to enjoy some of Istria’s most memorable sights. You can enjoy meandering the warren of cobbled streets that make up the old town and maybe buy some of the beautiful artwork that the town is famed for. In the evenings head to a clifftop restaurant and sample exquisite cuisine whilst taking in the most views as the sun sinks into the Adriatic.

For a change of pace head inland where you can explore ancient hill villages, like Buzet, the city of truffles, and Hum, the smallest town in the world with just 30 inhabitants. Further along the coast, you’ll find the city of Pula, complete with an amphitheatre and a buzzy shopping zone and some beautiful architecture, or if you’re looking for a fab day on the water take a trip to Limski Fjord and sample some of the world’s most delicious oysters.

European holiday essentials

Wherever you’re heading in Europe you’ll want to be sure you’ve got all your holiday essentials. It makes sense to have a good insurance policy like that offered by Staysure and it’s always wise to check your passport’s has one month left before it expires. Take a few Euros for when you get there, and be sure to have a credit or debit card does not charge high fees when it’s used abroad.