14 Most Amazing Churches in Spain

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14 Most Amazing Churches in Spain

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Category : Europe , Spain

Spain is known for many things, just some of which includes Flamenco dancing and paella. Spain is also a country with a strong Catholic background, and some of Spain’s churches are among the best in the world. Whether or not you’re religious, your next trip to Spain should definitely include a few stops at the nation’s most beautiful and historic religious structures. This list includes the top churches in Spain and what makes each unique.

14. Malaga Cathedral

Malaga Cathedral

 

The Malaga Cathedral was constructed between the 16th and 18th centuries, using Renaissance plans to create what is now a focal point of the city. Originally located within the Moorish walls of Malaga, the cathedral is filled with an amazing art collection. Enter through the Baroque facade, which is different from the rest of the cathedral, and admire medallions carved from stone, an enormous Gothic altarpiece and countless sculptures and paintings. Surprisingly, the south tower is still unfinished, because the congregation used its funds to support the United States in its war against the British back in the 18th century.

13. Zamora Cathedral

Zamora Cathedral

 

On the banks of the Duero River is Zamora Cathedral, a 12th century cathedral built in the Romanesque style. Over the last 900 years, several additions have been made to the structure, including Gothic apses and a Herrera cloister. The exterior of Zamora Cathedral is incredible, but what is within is just as fascinating. A large art collection is open to visitors to admire, including embossed images right on the architecture.

12. Avila Cathedral

Avila Cathedral

 

Avila Cathedral stands out from other religious structures on this list because it did double duty as a fortress. Construction began in the 11th century, with one of the turrets of the city walls serving as the apse to the church. The style has strong influences from French cathedrals built in the years prior, and it serves as the earliest example of Gothic architecture in Spain. Since the cathedral is still connected to the walls surrounding Avila, it is a stunning destination and a picture-worthy attraction.

11. Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga

Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga

 

Looking more like a palace from a fairy tale than an ordinary church, the Basilica de Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga is truly a unique and impressive structure. The neo-Romanesque cathedral was built toward the end of the 19th century, and it is entirely pink thanks to the natural hue of the limestone used in its construction. With towering twin spires and a background of green hills, the Basilica de Santa Maria la Real de Covadonga is definitely a bucket-list destination in Spain.

10. Segovia Cathedral

Segovia Cathedral

 

The final Gothic-style cathedral built in Spain was Segovia Cathedral. Construction on the church began in the 16th century, according to the plans of the architect Juan Gil de Hontañón. The cathedral is located right in the center of the Plaza Mayor in Segovia, making it an iconic part of the city’s history and identity. There are three major vaults and entrances to the cathedral, but the highlight is the incredible altarpiece from the 18th century that is made with bronze and marble.

9. Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma

Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma

 

On the island of Mallorca, just off the coast of Spain, is the stunning Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma. Known to locals as La Seu, the cathedral was started in the 13th century but only finished in 1601. The cathedral was built on the site of a Moorish mosque, and it stands as one of the tallest cathedrals in all of Spain, and indeed even in all of Europe. The design is a distinct combination of Catalan and Gothic, but in the early 20th century some cosmetic changes were made by Gaudi, refreshing the style.

8. Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor

Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor

 

The magnificent Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor, known in English as the Expiatory Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, is found in Barcelona, right at the summit of Mount Tibidabo. This is one of the newer cathedrals in Spain, and it was only consecrated in the 1950s after a lengthy construction process. The church is made from stone in a Romanesque design, although there are plenty of embellishments and neo-Gothic touches worth admiring as well.

7. Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar

Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar

 

In Spanish tradition, it is said that the Virgin Mary appeared to the Apostle James as he was praying at the Ebro River in Zaragoza. For that reason, the Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar has long been a historically significant structure, and one that is revered both throughout Spain and throughout the Christian religion. The architectural style of the basilica is a blend of rococo, Baroque and neoclassical styles, and the interior is home to a staggering display of works by painter Francisco Goya.

6. Toledo Cathedral

Toledo Cathedral

 

Perhaps the most famous Gothic church in Spain is the Toledo Cathedral, a fairy tale building that represents the height of Spanish design and architecture. Built with white limestone, the cathedral is almost otherworldly, reflecting light and impressing even those without an interest in religion or architecture. Natural light streams in through open vaults, adding to the effect. The Cathedral Treasury is a must-see part of the structure, thanks to its impressive collection of precious stones far larger than any you could ever see in a jewelry store.

5. Burgos Cathedral

Burgos Cathedral

 

Although the Burgos Cathedral was commissioned in the 13th century, it wasn’t completed until the 16th century. That long construction and design process was worth the wait, however, because the final result is a magnificent Gothic cathedral. Dedicated to the Virgin Mary, Burgos Cathedral boasts unusual octagonal spires, setting it apart from most other Gothic churches in Europe. From the exterior, you can admire the facade and its hundreds of sculptures of saints and Biblical figures.

4. Santiago de Compostela Cathedral

Santiago de Compostela Cathedral

 

The site of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela is steeped in history. Legend tells of the Apostle James having his remains brought to the site by angels, and then in the eighth century this burial place was discovered by a hermit. A small church was built to mark the site, and by the 11th century there was an enormous cathedral. The Romanesque architecture of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela is remarkable, and marks the traditional end on the Way of St. James pilgrimage since the Middle Ages.

3. Seville Cathedral

Seville Cathedral

 

Also known as the Cathedral of Saint Mary by the Sea, Seville Cathedral is a stunning Gothic structure that is currently also the largest Cathedral in the world. Built in the 16th century, the cathedral is sprawling and occupies a prime position in the center of the city of Seville. Along with the gorgeous spires and embellishments, Seville Cathedral is worth a visit because it is the final burial place of famed explorer Christopher Columbus.

2. Sagrada Familia

Sagrada Familia

 

The Sagrada Familia is without a doubt the most famous church in Barcelona, thanks in part to its creator, Antoni Gaudi. Begun in 1882, this cathedral is still an ongoing project, although it is nearing the end of construction. Different from many of the classic Spanish churches, the Sagrada Familia is built with elements of the Art Nouveau style. Today, the Sagrada Familia is one of the most popular tourism attractions in the city of Barcelona, and it is open to the public for tours as well as religious services.

1. Mezquita of Cordoba

#1 of Churches In Spain

 

The Mezquita, also known as the Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba, has one of the most fascinating history of all the churches in Spain. Parts of the structure date back to the seventh century, when it served as a Visigoth church. Later, the Mezquita was a Muslim mosque, and only in the 13th century did it revert back to Catholicism. The building is a prime example of Moorish architecture, boasting countless arches and tall domes. A Renaissance nave was added in the 16th century, blending architectural styles and showcasing harmony between design ideas as well as religions.

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10 Best Places to Visit in Slovenia

Slovenia is a scenic country with a fantastic location in the heart of Europe. The nation is surrounded by the Eastern Alps, the Adriatic Sea, the Balkans, Italy, Croatia and Hungary, making it accessible from a range of European locations. Planning a trip to Slovenia is an opportunity to see a variety of destinations that include vibrant cities, charming villages, snow-capped mountains and scenic beaches. On your next getaway, aim to see as many of the best places to visit in Slovenia as your schedule will allow.

10. Maribor

Maribor

 

After Ljubljana, Maribor is the largest city in Slovenia. It is located close to the Austrian border, and it is built up along the banks of the Drava River. Maribor is known for its wine growing industry that surrounds the city as well as its endless outdoor recreation opportunities. In Maribor, you can see the Stara trta, or the oldest vine in the world, which dates back for more than 450 years. Keep the wine tour going with a trip to the popular Old Vine House and the enormous Vinag Wine Cellar. Don’t miss the major squares in Maribor, which include Slomškov Square, Main Square and Castle Square, all of which offer plenty of charm and historic architecture.

9. Koper

Koper

 

As one of the oldest coastal towns in Slovenia, and a major port, Koper is an integral part of the country’s infrastructure. This is yet another coastal spot that was once part of the Venetian Empire, and it formally went by the name Caprea. Later, it became part of Yugoslavia. Today, Koper is a lesser-known destination that nevertheless offers several enjoyable attractions. You can tour Tito Square, the heart of the city, explore the refurbished Praetorian Palace or climb the bell tower of Campanile for spectacular views of the city below. There is a free public access beach by the Koper Marina that is ideal for swimming or just enjoying a picnic in the sunshine.

8. Kranjska Gora

Kranjska Gora

 

Popular for winter sports enthusiasts is the destination of Kranjska Gora, located in the northwest of Slovenia. During the winter, Kranjska Gora is busy with visitors who ski and snowboard in the resort of Vitranc, taking advantage of the frequent snowfall and the steep trails. Summer is just as appealing, however, thanks to challenging hikes and the opportunity to rent mountain bikes in the area. Even if you’re not into outdoor sports, Kranjska Gora is a scenic spot to unwind, relax in upscale hotels and dine at world-class restaurants appealing to travelers from around the globe.

7. Celje 

Celje

 

One of the oldest cities in all of Slovenia is Celje, a small city perched on the banks of the Savinja River. The biggest attraction in the city is the enormous castle, which was erected in the 14th century and now looks down over the city from its hilltop location. The best way to spend a day in Celje is to walk through Old Celje, the historic downtown where buildings date back to medieval times and you can stroll along cobblestone roads, dine at traditional eateries and admire the traditional architecture throughout the city.

6. Ptuj

Ptuj

 

On the banks of the Drava River is the city of Ptuj, a destination in Eastern Slovenia with an impressive collection of historic architecture. Ptuj is widely regarded as one of the oldest cities in the nation, and it has been important in the local culture since the Stone Age. Today, some of the biggest attractions include the Orpheus Monument that dates back to Roman times, the collection of art and artifacts in the Ptuj Grad, or castle, the Town Hall that was constructed in 1907 and the 13th century Dominican Monastery that is now housed in the city’s largest museum. Also of note in Ptuj are the thermal springs perfect for relaxation and the annual carnival event called Kurentovanje.

5. Piran

Piran

 

On the tip of Southwestern Slovenia, and on the coast of the Adriatic Sea, is the resort hotspot called Piran. The destination is reminiscent of Italy, which makes sense since it was actually part of the Venetian Empire for more than five centuries. Piran is small in size, but it is quaint, historic and scenic. History buffs might want to explore landmarks like the main square called Tartinijev trg, the oldest building in the city called the Venetian House and the Church of St. George. You can also walk right on top of the city walls or hop off one of the piers for a refreshing swim in the Adriatic.

4. Postojna

Postojna

 

Postojna is a relatively small town in Southwest Slovenia, but it is a must-see destination for travelers drawn to unique attractions and natural scenery. Postojna is known for its extensive cave system, which boasts a staggering 20 km (13 miles) of chambers, hallways and galleries, some of which have ceilings nearly 50 meters (150 feet) high. There is even a train tour that takes you through parts of the cave system, and then you can walk through some of the more interesting sections of the underground environment. North of Postojna is a medieval castle that is built into the side of a cave, creating a spectacular display of engineering that you have to see to believe.

3. Triglav National Park

Triglav National Park

 

If you want to get outdoors and explore some of the amazing natural scenery in Slovenia, then Triglav National Park is the ideal spot to visit. Most of the park is made up of the Julian Alps, with highlights in the region including the towering peak of Mount Triglav itself as well as the calm waters of Lake Bohinj. For spectacular views, you can attempt to hike Mount Triglav, or you can take the easy route and ride on the Vogel Cable Car Ride. The adventurous can also cross the Vintgar Gorge on a wooden footbridge from the 19th century or climb a steep staircase to see the rushing waters of the Savica Waterfall. Rafting on the Soca River is also a popular activity.

2. Lake Bled

Lake Bled

 

Serving as a gateway to the Triglav National park is Lake Bled, a scenic body of water surrounded by the Julian Alps. The emerald green lake isn’t large, and it is possible to walk the perimeter in a single afternoon. What makes the destination so appealing is the small island in the middle of the lake, which is home to a 17th century church. You might also want to ride horses on the shores of the lake, rent a rowboat to explore the water or climb 15 minutes to reach Bled Castle, which dates back to the 17th century and boasts magnificent views over the lake below.

1. Ljubljana

#1 of Best Places To Visit In Slovenia

 

One of the best places to visit in Slovenia is its capital, Ljubljana. Although Ljubljana is much smaller than most European capitals, it has a unique charm that makes it worth a visit. A major attraction in the city is Tromostovje, also known as the Triple Bridge, where three picturesque bridges span the river right next to one another. You can also spot castles and medieval squares in the Old Town, see the original Roman city walls or relax in the popular Tivoli Park. As the capital, Ljubljana is also home to fantastic art and architecture museums, an impressive zoo, the Slovenian Philharmonic and the Slovene National Theater.

 

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10 Top Tourist Attractions in Cyprus

Tags :

Category : Cyprus , Europe

The easternmost island in the Mediterranean Sea, Cyprus is an independent nation with a long and colorful past. Legend has it that Cyprus was the birthplace of Aphrodite, and it’s easy to understand why the ancients chose this appealing island to worship the Greek goddess of love. With its mild climate, beautiful beaches, forested mountains and lush green valleys, Cyprus is the ideal destination for a romantic holiday.

Lovers of history will be enchanted by the ancient attractions in Cyprus as well. The isle is peppered with archeological sites, ruins and remnants of past empires, conquerors and civilizations. Mouth-watering cuisine, a modern infrastructure and a welcoming populace make a vacation in Cyprus a pleasurable experience for any traveler.

10. Kourion

Kourion

 

Scholars believe that the ancient city of Kourion was founded around the 13th century B.C., but it’s the 5th-century Greco-Roman ruins that most attract visitors to the archeological site near the city of Limassol. Perched on a hill overlooking Episkopi Bay, the tumbled homes, temples and public buildings of the Kourion complex make it easy to imagine what life was like on Cyprus two thousand years ago. Standout sites include the remains of Roman baths, an open Agoura, a temple to Apollo and an amphitheater where classical plays are still performed today.

9. Kolossi Castle

Kolossi Castle

 

Situated near the southern tip of Cyprus, Kolossi Castle is a three-story keep built as a military fortress for the Crusaders of the High Middle Ages. From the 13th to 15th century, the fortress was controlled by the Hospitallers known as the Knights of St. John and was later taken by their rivals, the Knights Templar. While not much remains of the original complex beyond the sturdy stone walls of the keep, a spiral staircase leads visitors to the roof-top battlements for breathtaking views of the vineyard-covered peninsula and blue Mediterranean Sea.

8. Omodos Village

Omodos Village

 

Located in the Troodos Mountains near the city of Nicosia, Omodos Village is the premier destination for wine aficionados in Cyprus. Wine-tasting stalls offer samples of local varietals like Mavro and Xynisteri, and restaurants and bars serve traditional fare. With its cobbled streets, stone houses and lush gardens, Omodos is well worth visiting for its beauty and charm as well. The town’s 17th-century monastery is home to several museums, including an icon museum that features extraordinary wood carvings as well as an extensive collection of icons.

7. Zenobia Wreck Diving

Zenobia Wreck Diving

 

In 1980, the Swedish ferry Zenobia began listing to port during her maiden voyage off the coast of Cyprus, eventually capsizing outside Larnaca Harbor. The ship sank slowly, coming to rest on her port side in one piece. Today, the wreck of the Zenobia is ranked as one of the world’s best diving sites. Easy accessibility, mild currents and temperate water temperatures bring around 45,000 divers to the wreck each year. Although the ship’s many intact rooms are open for exploration, inexperienced divers are encouraged to confine their dive to the outside of the ship where they can view sea life from groupers to barracudas.

6. Tomb of the Kings

Tomb of the Kings

 

The Tombs of the Kings near Paphos is a large necropolis dating back to the 4th century BC. The tombs are carved out of the solid rock and decorated with Doric columns. Despite the name there is no evidence of any royalty buried here. Instead the site was the final resting place of Ptolemaic aristocrats and high officials. The tombs are unique in Cyprus, being heavily influenced by ancient Egyptian tradition, when it was believed that tombs for the dead should resemble houses for the living. The 7 excavated tombs are scattered over a wide area. The most impressive is No 3, which has an open atrium below ground level, surrounded by columns.

5. Nissi Beach

Nissi Beach

 

The most popular of the many beaches that grace the shores of the resort city of Ayia Napa, Nissi is best known for its lively beach party scene. Young people flock to its powder-white sands to sip libations at the famous Nissi Bay Beach bar where DJs play music day and night. Like all the beaches in Ayia Napa, there’s a water sports center in Nissi where visitors can enjoy everything from paragliding and windsurfing to water-skiing and pedal boating. Shallow crystal-clear water makes Nissi Beach perfect for wading and swimming as well. The beach takes its name from the small islet located close to the coast. The uninhabited island can be easily reached on foot through the shallow waters and provides good shelter.

4. St. Hilarion Castle

St. Hilarion Castle

 

Spread over the top of a rocky crag near the city of Girne off the northern coast of Cyprus, St. Hilarion Castle is the best preserved of the island’s 11th-century fortifications. Originally a monastery, the fortress gets its name from a local ascetic and hermit known as Hilarion, who attracted a group of devout followers during the 4th century. A 20-minute hike from Girne takes visitors up past the castle’s stables and soldiers’ quarters to the royal residence and church. A restored staircase leads to a hilltop guard tower where visitors can enjoy a panoramic vista of the mountains, valleys and shoreline.

3. Agios Lazaros Church

Agios Lazaros Church

 

Situated in the town center of the southern city of Larnaca, the Church of Saint Lazarus is a 9th-century monument to the man that Christians believe Jesus raised from the dead. According to tradition, Lazarus fled to Cyprus to escape persecution and served as the city’s first bishop for thirty years. Built over Lazarus’ second tomb, the Byzantine church was refurbished in the Baroque style during the 1800s with Greek Orthodox ornamentation. Although the tomb now stands empty, renovations made after a fire occurred in 1970 found relics of the saint in a marble sarcophagus located under the altar.

2. Kykkos Monastery

Kykkos Monastery

 

Nestled in the hills west of the inland city of Pedoulas stands the Kykkos Monastery, a gorgeous Byzantine complex founded in the late 11th century. While all of the original structures were destroyed by fire, a no-expense-spared renovation begun in 1831 restoring the monastery to its original glory. Each building, particularly the chapel, is heavily ornamented in the Greek Orthodox style with murals lining the walls, indoors and out. The most prized artifact in the wealthiest monastery in Cyprus is a portrait of the Virgin Mary believed to have been painted by St. Luke.

1. Paphos Archaeological Park

#1 of Tourist Attractions In Cyprus

With artifacts dating back to the Prehistoric Era, the Kato Paphos Archaeological Park located in the southwestern city of Paphos is an archeological treasure trove of ancient monuments, villas and underground tombs. The most impressive sites include Roman villas built around the 3rd century A.D. The ancient homes are named after their preserved mosaic floors, which feature pictorial narratives of Greek and Roman mythology. Nearby in the Agora is the Odeion, a recently restored 2nd-century theater. With its granite columns, thick walls and corner towers, the Saranta Kolones fortress constructed in the 7th century is worth a visit as well.

Cheap Flights to Larnaca

Origin Departure date Return date Find Ticket

Kutaisi

02.12.2017

03.02.2018

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Kiev

22.09.2018

29.09.2018

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Vilnius

22.01.2018

16.02.2018

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Bucharest

12.05.2018

21.05.2018

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Moscow

17.01.2018

20.01.2018

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Mulhouse

21.11.2017

02.12.2017

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Tel Aviv-Yafo

02.12.2017

04.12.2017

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Warsaw

19.04.2018

30.04.2018

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Sofia

20.04.2018

01.05.2018

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Brussels

07.02.2018

11.02.2018

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London

01.12.2017

15.12.2017

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17.12.2017

21.12.2017

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23.11.2017

02.12.2017

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Saint Petersburg

18.11.2017

28.11.2017

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Kos

22.11.2017

28.11.2017

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Prague

12.08.2018

19.08.2018

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Frankfurt

24.11.2017

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06.12.2017

13.12.2017

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21.11.2017

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20.04.2018

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20.04.2018

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20.04.2018

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18.12.2017

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08.12.2017

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24.12.2017

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13.01.2018

17.01.2018

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24.04.2018

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11.01.2018

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15.12.2017

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20.04.2018

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20.04.2018

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Tomsk

03.03.2018

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Thessaloniki

18.12.2017

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17.04.2018

28.04.2018

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19.05.2018

27.05.2018

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23.11.2017

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Odessa

28.05.2018

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Ufa

02.12.2017

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Mineralnye Vody

02.12.2017

09.12.2017

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Tallinn

23.09.2018

07.10.2018

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Novosibirsk

17.01.2018

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Omsk

19.11.2017

26.11.2017

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Berlin

27.11.2017

03.12.2017

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Cheboksary

22.12.2017

27.12.2017

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Yerevan

22.01.2018

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Tbilisi

29.11.2017

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Voronezh

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Dnepropetrovsk

29.12.2017

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Munich

24.11.2017

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21.07.2018

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Verona

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Sochi

24.11.2017

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Stavropol

24.11.2017

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Anapa

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Perm

04.01.2018

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Gdansk

21.12.2017

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Paris

27.12.2017

06.01.2018

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Chelyabinsk

05.02.2018

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Tyumen

05.02.2018

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Oslo

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Rome

29.12.2017

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Belfast

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Bristol

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Vladikavkaz

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Krasnojarsk

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Podgorica

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Nizhnevartovsk

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Almaty

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Surgut

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Nadym

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Khabarovsk

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Cardiff

21.07.2018

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Bourgas

20.04.2018

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Naberevnye Chelny

30.04.2018

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Tivat

23.11.2017

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Kemerovo

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Stavanger

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Stockholm

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Exeter

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Lyon

27.12.2017

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Ulyanovsk

14.07.2018

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Shimkent

01.06.2018

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Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk

15.06.2018

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Kostanay

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Tokyo

25.12.2017

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Groznyj

27.11.2017

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New York

21.12.2017

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Hotels in Cyprus Island: 5 stars

Hotel Stars Discount Price per night, from Choose dates

Elysium

★★★★★

-21%

159125

View Hotel

Sentido Thalassa Coral Bay

★★★★★

-9%

136123

View Hotel

Annabelle Hotel

★★★★★

-10%

182164

View Hotel

Grecian Park

★★★★★

-8%

121111

View Hotel

Almyra

★★★★★

-56%

307136

View Hotel

Grecian Bay

★★★★★

-6%

120113

View Hotel

Golden Bay Beach Hotel

★★★★★

-21%

11793

View Hotel

King Evelthon Beach Hotel & Resort

★★★★★

-11%

9686

View Hotel


  • -

7 Best Boutique Hotels in Dublin

Tags :

Category : Europe , Ireland

Located along Ireland’s east coast at the Liffey River, Dublin is the country’s capital and largest city. From Medieval castles, Georgian architecture and a Viking heritage to traditional dance and colorful pubs, Dublin is filled with sites and attractions for all interests. Literary types can visit pubs immortalized in print or frequented by James Joyce, W.B. Yeats, Bram Stoker and Rudyard Kipling or visit the National Library of Ireland and the Dublin Writers Museum.

Whether on business or a family vacation in Ireland, travelers can get a uniquely Irish experience by choosing the personalized service, intimate atmosphere and luxurious accommodations of a boutique hotel. Best of all, many boutique hotels in Dublin are within walking distance or a quick drive to some of the city’s most famous museums, monuments, nightlife and attractions.

7. The Morgan

The Morgan

 

The Morgan is a stylish and contemporary boutique hotel located in Temple Bar, Dublin’s cultural quarter. Simplicity mixes with modern design in Art Deco fixtures, designer furniture and fun accessories. Spacious rooms are available in contemporary queen and deluxe king rooms along with suites and a penthouse. There is a fitness room, bar and restaurant. Located within close proximity to the shopping of Grafton Street and Dublin’s main business district, other area attractions include Dublin Castle, the Ha’Penny Bridge and Trinity College.

6. Number 31

Number 31

 

Number 31 is made up of two converted buildings connected by a charming garden. The classical Georgian townhouse nicely contrasts with the modernist mews designed by the renowned architect Sam Stephenson, whose private house this was. Warm and inviting rooms feature luxurious beds, fine linens, subtle textures and designer touches. Room rates include a delicious breakfast of seasonal produce and organic ingredients. The breakfast at Number 31 has been named the Best Breakfast in Ireland. The Number 31 boutique hotel is within easy access to St. Stephen’s Green, the shopping district of Grafton Street and the Grand Canal.

5. Brooks Hotel

Brooks Hotel

 

The Brooks Hotel resides on Drury Street, which is near the fashionable shops, bars and restaurants of Dublin’s cultural quarter. Warm and inviting with a spacious and airy atmosphere, guest rooms feature original artwork, potted plants and oak furniture. Luxury amenities include heated mirrors, a power shower, sunken baths and bathrobes. Rooms range from classic, deluxe and executive to junior and presidential suites. The hotel has an event space, a private cinema and in-room desks. Guests can grab homemade pastries, coffee and tea at the Café Lounge, enjoy artisan dishes at Francesca’s Restaurant or relax at Jasmine Bar, which is part of the Whiskey Trail of Ireland.

4. Fitzwilliam Hotel Dublin

Fitzwilliam Hotel Dublin

 

The Fitzwilliam Hotel Dublin exudes a business-like exterior that opens up to a stylish and contemporary interior. Executive, superior deluxe and signature guest rooms as well as a penthouse are available. The penthouse has a private butler, baby grand piano and complimentary champagne and fresh flowers. Down duvets, robes and slippers and luxury Egyptian cotton bath towels make guests feel right at home. There is a gym area and a beauty salon for facials, body wraps and massages. Dining choices include gourmet bar food at Inn on the Garden, contemporary dining at Citron and the Michelin star Thornton’s.

3. The Gibson Hotel

The Gibson Hotel

 

With its polished steel and glass exterior, the Gibson Hotel is the ultimate urban retreat. The hotel is near the 3Arena concert and live show amphitheater as well as the heart of Dublin on O’Connell Street. Spacious guest rooms are modern and chic with private courtyards or cityscape views. Rooms include superior and family rooms or junior suites outfitted in calm and comfortable decor. Restaurants include Hemi Bar and Coda Eatery. The Gibson has meeting rooms and a relaxation area.

2. Clontarf Castle Hotel

Clontarf Castle Hotel

 

Old world charm connects with modern amenities, fashionable furnishings and luxury accommodations at Clontarf Castle Hotel. Located about 15 minutes from Dublin City Centre, the castle’s vine-covered exterior opens to arched entryways and extravagant rooms outfitted in freestanding tubs, designer wall coverings and fashionable furniture. Fahrenheit Grill specializes in beef and seafood dishes and is one of the finest restaurants in Dublin. Accessorized with oversized sofas and red chandeliers, Indigo Lounge offers pastries and coffee in the morning and café style dining and cocktails in the evening.

1. The Merrion Hotel

#1 of Best Boutique Hotels In Dublin

 

Created from restored 18th century townhouses, the Merrion Hotel mixes the past with the very sophisticated present in its stately columns, marble bathrooms and 19th and 20th century art collection. Guests can choose from views of the garden, city scenes or stately government buildings in either the garden wing or the Georgian main house. Dining at his boutique hotel in Dublin includes the gastro-pub fare of the Cellar Bar, the modern Irish cuisine of The Cellar Restaurant and fine dining at Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud. The hotel has meeting rooms, a spa and a bar. The Merrion is within access to the National Gallery, Trinity College and the Irish Museum of Modern Art.

Cheap Flights to Dublin

Origin Departure date Return date Find Ticket

Bristol

28.11.2017

29.11.2017

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London

04.12.2017

14.12.2017

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Liverpool

04.01.2018

06.01.2018

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Cologne

14.02.2018

21.02.2018

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Brussels

19.01.2018

21.01.2018

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Birmingham

05.12.2017

10.12.2017

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Manchester

20.12.2017

26.12.2017

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Glasgow

24.05.2018

28.05.2018

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Munich

05.01.2018

17.01.2018

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Milan

23.02.2018

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Rome

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Leeds

06.07.2018

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Paris

30.03.2018

03.04.2018

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Newcastle

22.11.2017

26.11.2017

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Warsaw

14.02.2018

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Amsterdam

23.11.2017

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Barcelona

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Berlin

05.05.2018

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Helsinki

29.01.2018

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Arrecife

22.01.2018

29.01.2018

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Marseille

11.12.2017

14.12.2017

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Exeter

05.07.2018

08.07.2018

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Hamburg

02.01.2018

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Dusseldorf

05.01.2018

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07.01.2018

14.01.2018

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Luqa

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Cardiff

14.12.2017

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Lyon

30.11.2017

07.12.2017

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Vilnius

07.01.2018

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Inverness

01.03.2018

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Krakow

23.12.2017

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Naples

13.05.2018

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Moscow

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Aberdeen

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18.05.2018

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27.12.2017

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Athens

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Bacau

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Gran Canaria

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Copenhagen

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Saint Petersburg

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Istanbul

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Nuremberg

30.11.2017

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Venice

23.11.2017

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Minsk

25.01.2018

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Catania

10.12.2017

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Orkney Island

01.03.2018

05.03.2018

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Tallinn

30.12.2017

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Pisa

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Faro

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Malaga

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Turin

30.12.2017

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Zagreb

15.05.2018

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Newburgh

21.01.2018

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Greven

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Tel Aviv-Yafo

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Samara

11.02.2018

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Porto

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Boston

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Toronto

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Krasnodar

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New York

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Windsor Locks

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Almaty

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Osijek

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Las Vegas

30.01.2018

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Bratislava

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Stavropol

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Denver

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Chelyabinsk

30.11.2017

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Los Angeles

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Chicago

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Raleigh

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Novosibirsk

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18.01.2018

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Astrakhan

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27.07.2018

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Houston

16.09.2018

30.09.2018

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  • -

10 Best Places to Visit in Finland

Tags :

Category : Europe , Finland

While not technically a part of Scandinavia, Finland boasts some of the same traits as its neighboring countries. Incredible scenery, unspoiled nature and a relatively liberal, modern political system are all positive attributes of Finland. In the winter the Northern Lights can be seen in the northernmost part of the country while in warmer months many Finns love to head to their summer cottages to enjoy some swimming, fishing, barbecuing but most of all the sauna. When visiting Finland, it is natural to head to Helsinki, but your itinerary should also include other destinations beyond the capital. From small towns to natural wonders, this list highlights the best places to visit in Finland.

10. Levi 

Levi

 

With so much unspoiled landscape, Finland is a nature lover’s dream destination. For outdoor enthusiasts, winter resort of Levi is undoubtedly a top pick for fun. Located in Finnish Lapland, Levi boasts miles of trails for skiing and snowboarding. There are also opportunities for more unusual activities such as reindeer safaris, ice fishing expeditions and relaxing in large outdoor saunas. The nightlife in Levi is a major draw for Finnish residents, so don’t leave until you have explored the bars, lounges and clubs in Central Levi.

9. Tampere

Tampere

 

Although it is the third-largest city in Finland, Tampere is still not a huge urban area, and it feels more like a collection of neighborhoods than a major metropolis. To get an understanding of Tampere’s history and heritage, check out the Vapriikki, a museum complex housing the Natural History Museum and the Finnish Hockey Hall of Fame, among others. Outdoor recreation like skiing and hockey are incredibly popular in Tampere, but the less athletically inclined can settle for a stroll through outdoor hubs like Duck Park or the Hatanpää Arboretum. The popular Särkänniemi Adventure Park on the edge of downtown features an aquarium, a planetarium, a children’s zoo, an art museum and an observation tower with great views of the forests and lakes.

8. Aland Archipelago

Aland Archipelago

 

In the heart of the Baltic Sea is a collection of islands known as the Aland Archipelago. While they technically do belong to Finland, the islands run relatively autonomously. Unusually, this is one part of Finland where you are more likely to hear residents speaking Swedish than Finnish! Ferries shuttle visitors between the Aland Islands, offering you the chance to see attractions like the ship turned museum called the Pommern, the Aland Maritime Museum, the 14th century castle called Kastelholm and the miles of stunning hiking trails. Don’t miss the culinary specialty of the archipelago, a dessert pancake topped with stewed plums and whipped cream.

7. Kemi

Kemi

 

Industrially, Kemi is a city in Finnish Lapland that is known best for its pulp mills. Travelers, however, know Kemi best as the location of the iconic snow castle. The castle is built yearly, and it can be three stories tall and serve as the venue for weddings and live musical performances. Guests can even stay overnight in the snow hotel, should they choose! Kemi also has a bustling nightlife scene, and the destination is where you can board the arctic icebreaker tour that winds through the arctic waters in search of breathtaking icebergs and incredible views.

6. Finnish Lakeland

Finnish Lakeland

 

As the name suggests, Finnish Lakeland is as area of Finland where there is an abundance of lakes. There are about 55,000 lakes here that are at least 200 meters (660 feet) wide! The region is spread across central and eastern Finland, and it is bound by the stunning Salpausselkä Ridges as well as the Russian border. The largest lake in the district is Lake Saimaa, where you can swim, boat or just hike the perimeter and soak in the views. While in Finnish Lakeland, you can also explore the university town of Jyväskylä or the medieval St. Olaf’s Castle.

5. Turku

Turku

 

Along the coast of Southern Finland is Turku, a city that served as the capital of Finland for much of the 19th century and is also believed to be the oldest in the nation. Although Helsinki has long since taken over as the capital, Turku is still a major destination in Finland, and it is home to countless historic attractions and cultural landmarks. Some of the top things to see in Turku include the 13th century Turku Castle, the twin museums called Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova and the neighborhood of Luostarinmäki, which is one of the few areas with architecture that survived the early 19th century fire in the city.

4. Porvoo

Porvoo

 

The second-oldest town in all of Finland is Porvoo, a destination known for its unique and picturesque wooden homes. As you stroll through the cobblestone streets of Old Porvoo, known to locals as Vanha Porvoo, you can see landmarks from the 13th century, although much of the wooden architecture was constructed at the end of the 19th century. Other great ways to pass the time in Porvoo include touring the 11th century Porvoo Cathedral, exploring local art and heritage at the Porvoo Museum and indulging in delicious local pastries and candies at the Brunberg shop, an iconic business in the city.

3. Savonlinna

Savonlinna

 

A small city in the heart of Finnish Lakeland, Savonlinna is a charming historic destination worth a visit on your next trip to Finland. Located in the middle of Lake Saimma on a series of islands, the area’s biggest attraction is unquestionably Olavinlinna, or St. Olaf’s Castle, which was built in the 15th century. Since the castle’s location wasn’t militarily or politically important for centuries, it has withstood the test of time and remains largely intact and furnished. Also worth checking out in Savonlinna is the Orthodox Museum, the Savonlinna Provincial Museum and nearby Kerimäki, where the world’s biggest wooden church is located. In Savonlinna’s market square, be sure to dig into muikku, or a local herring dish, from one of the many vendors in the area.

2. Rovaniemi 

Rovaniemi

 

If you want to experience the beauty of Lapland, then Rovaniemi is the ultimate gateway to it all. The capital of Finnish Lapland, Rovaniemi was completely destroyed at the end of the Second World War. As a result, much of the architecture is mid-century and brutalist in design. While Rovaniemi is home to a number of wonderful attractions, a highlight is undoubtedly that it serves as the official Finnish home to Santa Claus. Visitors can tour Santa Claus Village, get stamps from the Santa Claus Post Office and even visit the Santa-themed underground amusement park. None-Christmas attractions in Rovaniemi include the Korundi House of Culture, the Pilke Science Center and the engineering feat known as the Jätkänkynttilä Bridge.

1. Helsinki

#1 of Best Places To Visit In Finland

 

As the country’s capital, Helsinki is the most popular place to visit in Finland and a destination you won’t want to miss. If Helsinki looks a lot like St. Petersburg, it is because it was built to replicate the Russian city’s style in 1812. Today, some of the main attractions in Helsinki include the many churches, the three most important of which include the Lutheran Cathedral, the Church in the Rock and the Uspenski Cathedral. The stadium that served as the site of the 1952 Olympics is worth a visit, as is the art deco architecture of the Parliament House. While there are dozens of excellent museums and galleries in Helsinki, one of the best to see is the National Museum of Finland, which does a great job of tracing Finnish history over time.

Hotels in Helsinki: 5 stars

Hotel Stars Discount Price per night, from Choose dates

Hotel Lilla Roberts

★★★★★

-7%

172160

View Hotel

Hotel Haven

★★★★★

-18%

193159

View Hotel

Hotel Kamp

★★★★★

-6%

240225

View Hotel

Hilton Helsinki Strand

★★★★★

-22%

153120

View Hotel

Hilton Helsinki Kalastajatorppa

★★★★★

-16%

126105

View Hotel

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10 Best Places to Visit in Serbia

Tags :

Category : Europe , Serbia

Serbia today is a blend of cultures, having been fought over by the Romans, Ottomans, Hapsburgs and other people in its war-torn past. Now it’s a place for fun, from rowdy parties to beer festivals, in some of the most scenic spots around. It’s where Eastern culture meets Western culture, where medieval cities with imposing fortresses and ancient monasteries ooze charm. Oh, and the country has some pretty darned good skiing, too. An overview of the best places to visit in Serbia:

10. Nis

Nis

 

The lively university town of Niš, Serbia’s third largest city, is a useful stopover point between Belgrade and Sofia or Skopje. It is one of the oldest cities in Europe and the Balkans, dating back to 279 BC. Constantine the Great, founder of Constantinople, was born here; his memorial can be found in the city center. Also in the city center are remains of an 18th century fortress built by the Turks. Gruesome, but unique to see, is Skull Tower built from the skulls of Serbians who were decapitated by the Ottomans. Southeast of the city is Niška Banja, a spa that is popular for its hot water springs which help treat rheumatic disorders.

9. Devil’s Town

Devil's Town

 

Erosion is responsible for one of Serbia’s most majestic rock formations, Devil’s Town, which got its name from the strange rock shapes. Local legend says the rocks are members of a wedding party petrified by the devil Extremely acidic water, known as Djavolja voda, or devil’s water, which also contributed to this geologic phenomenon. Located in southern Serbia, Devil’s Town is composed of more than 200 unique rock formations that tower over the landscape, which is spread over two valleys on the slopes of Radan Mountain in southern Serbia. The pillars are a work in progress; they collapse and then leave room for new formations to grow.

8. Kopaonik National Park

Kopaonik National Park

 

Kopaonik is the highest mountain in Serbia, becoming a national park in 1981. Rugged and scenic, the park is home to Serbia’s main ski resort, with 25 lifts that can handle 32,000 skiers an hour; the snow lasts from November to May. It’s a great place to hike in the summer, with an extensive array of flora and fauna. The mountain also is known for its mineral wealth, with gold, silver, iron and zinc mined here in the past. The park also sports unique rock formations, many of which have names; hot springs; geysers and waterfalls.

7. Prizren

Prizren

 

Prizren may have been a capital of medieval Serbia at one time but today it is part of Kosovo with its own elected officials, though Serbia considers it an illegitimately separated province and Serbians are a minority. The top attraction here is the medieval Prizren Fortress that got its present look from 4-1/2 centuries of Ottoman rule. Prizren is a good walking city, since most everything is close together. Several churches can be found in the city center, with the Church of Our Lady of Ljovis most notable, since it’s a magnificent example of medieval Serbian architecture.

6. Derdap National Park

Derdap National Park

 

China may have its Three Gorges but Derdap National Park has four gorges that stretch 115 km (72 miles) through the valleys. One gorge, Gospodin vit, has one of the deepest rivers in the world. These gorges combine to make Derdap gorge, also known as the Iron Gate because it is the southern entrance to the Carpathian Mountains. The park is located on the Danube River near the imposing riverfront Golubac fortress. The park, which is home to an abundance of flora and fauna, is one of the most visited areas in Serbia, particularly thanks to a lake formed by a hydroelectric plant.

5. Studenica Monastery

Studenica Monastery

 

The Studenica Monastery, located in central Serbia, has plenty of wow! factor, starting with lush green grass and two white marble churches (Church of the King and Church of the Virgin). This 12th century monastery is best known, however, for its outstanding 13th and 14th century Byzantine frescoes, paintings and other ornate decorations that can be found in various churches at the monastery. This fits in with the monastery’s reputation as the richest monastery in Serbia and the mother of all Serbian Orthodox monasteries. Stefan Nemanja, who founded Serbia and the monastery, is buried on the grounds.

4. Zlatibor 

Zlatibor

 

Zlatibor is a popular tourist destination in the mountains of western Serbia. It’s filled with facilities to keep you happy and healthy, from skiing in the winter to hiking in the summer. A ski resort is located at Tornik, the highest mountain at Zlatibor; runs are capable of handling 5,400 skiers an hour. The region is very scenic, with large meadows and quaint historic villages. Old Wooden churches and an open air museum filled withhold houses are top attractions. After a day spent exploring the region, savor the flavors here of Zlatiborian prsuta, a dried meat, and slivovitz, a plum brandy.

3. Novi Sad 

Novi Sad

 

Novi Sad is a pretty city on the banks of the Danube River, home to one of the river’s best beaches. A young city by European standards (it was founded in the late 17th century), Serbia’s second largest city sports a laid-back atmosphere, with people relaxing in the many parks. It’s most famous, perhaps, for its annual Exit music festival held in July at Petrovaradin, an old fortress that’s never been conquered. Notable buildings include the old town hall, located on the main square; Dvorac Dundjerski, a well-preserved old castle, and Church of the Great Martyr St. George, a Serbian orthodox church.

2. Subotica

Subotica

 

Subotica, the country’s fifth largest city, is one of the best places to visit in Serbia for at least a couple of reasons: It has the highest Catholic population and the most art nouveau buildings of anywhere else in the country. Of particular note are the city hall and the synagogue, both built in the early 1900s. But this city, which predates the Middle Ages, also is known for its older buildings, including the Cathedral of St. Theresa of Avila, built in 1797. Cafes around the main square, home to city hall and its blue fountain, are a good place to relax, perhaps admiring purchases from Buvljak, one of the largest flea markets in Europe.

1. Belgrade

#1 of Best Places To Visit In Serbia

 

Belgrade, Serbia’s capital and largest city, wasn’t always the pretty city it is today. Located at the confluence of the Danube and Sava rivers, Belgrade has a destructive past: It was fought over in 115 wars and burned 44 times. Today, the city is more peaceful, hosting numerous events ranging from book fairs to music, film and beer festivals. The Belgrade Fortress is the city‘s most famous historic site with museums and churches. It’s also a good place to view the rivers and the city itself. Top museums include the National Museum, with more than 400,000 exhibits, and the Nikola Tesla Museum, with thousands of the inventors’ personal items and documents.


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10 Top Tourist Attractions in Scotland

Category : Europe , Scotland

Scotland, a land of legends, a complex history and some of the world’s most lush scenery, calls out to the adventurous nature within us. Experience the place that inspired the epic movie “Braveheart”. Truly a place with something for everyone, Scotland is a small country that leaves a big impact on all who pass through. To help you organize your Scottish getaway, below is a list of the top tourist attractions in Scotland that should not be missed.

10. Broch of Mousa

Broch of Mousa

 

One of the most prestigious and well-preserved brochs in the Shetland Islands, this impressive structure is a rotund tower lined with stone internally and externally to provide the optimum strength as a defensive structure. The tower was built around 100 BC and is the only broch which is complete right to the top, including the original intramural stair.

9. Melrose Abbey

Melrose Abbey

 

Melrose Abbey was founded in 1136 by Cistercian monks, on the request of King David I of Scotland. This grand ruin with lavish masonic decoration is thought to hold the embalmed heart of Robert the Bruce, another king of Scotland. Truly a place of legends, Melrose Abbey is one of the most historically significant architectural structures in Scotland.

8. Cuillin Hills

Cuillin Hills

 

Located on the most northern island of Skye, the beauty of the rolling peaks of the Cuiillin Hills is undeniable. These hills are made up of two diverse formations. The Red Cuiillins are a red granite formation, which are softer and more inviting in appearance. In opposition, the Black Cuillins are more harsh in appearance with sharp, jagged peaks of volcanic rock that scale the skyline and warn off those who are unwelcome.

7. Skara Brae

Skara Brae

 

Located on the main island of Orkney, Skara Brae is one of the best preserved Stone Age villages in Europe. It was covered for hundreds of years by a sand dune until a great storm exposed the site in 1850. The stone walls are relatively well preserved because the dwellings were filled by sand almost immediately after the site was abandoned. Older than Stonehenge and the Great Pyramids, it has been called the “Scottish Pompeii” because of its excellent preservation.

6. Stirling Castle

Stirling Castle

 

Stirling Castle is one of the most spectacular castles in all of Scotland. High up on the vertical rock mass of Castle Hill, it rests, defensively positioned along the steep surrounding cliffs. Experience the art, culture and status that encompassed 16th century in Scotland. History lovers will not want to miss this popular tourist attraction.

5. Luskentyre Beach

Luskentyre Beach

 

Luskentyre beach is situated on the spectacular west coast of South Harris in the Outer Hebrides. One of the most beautiful color-washed coastal areas of Scotland, its blue-green seas shimmer against creamy sands and the vibrant green hillside. Peaceful and timeless, Luskentyre Beach has been voted Britain’s best beach.

4. Loch Ness

Loch Ness

 

One of the most famous lakes in the world, Loch Ness is the second largest loch in Scotland after Loch Lomond (and due to its great depth it is the largest by volume). About a mile wide at most places it holds the legend of an infamous sea monster. The most notorious mythical creature of modern time, Nessie, is said to dwell in the lake. With an air of mystery, the intriguing area of Loch Ness should not be missed. You might even get a glimpse of Nessie!

3. Ben Nevis

Ben Nevis

 

Situated deep into the highlands of Scotland, Ben Nevis is the British Isle’s highest summit. Offering stunningly spectacular views and historical malice, Ben Nevis attracts viewers, hikers and climbers alike to celebrate the tranquility of the surrounding nature. The mountain is readily accessible via a man-made path which zig zags up its south westerly face, while the rock face on the north west of the mountain is strictly for experienced mountaineers only.

2. Eilean Donan

Eilean Donan

 

Eilean Donan is a small island in Loch Duich in the western Highlands of Scotland. Connected to the mainland by a footbridge, the island is dominated by a picturesque medieval castle. The original castle was built in the early 13th century as a defense against the Vikings. Today, the castle is one of the most photographed monuments in Scotland and a popular venue for weddings and film locations. It has appeared in such films as Highlander and The World Is Not Enough.

1. Edinburgh Castle

#1 of Tourist Attractions In Scotland

 

Edinburgh Castle is a magnificent example of Scotland’s architecture, ideology, political tact and military importance. High up on the summit of a dormant volcano lurks this dominating structure. Its presence is visible for miles in every direction. Intimidating all who would challenge them, the Scottish utilized Edinburgh Castle for all of their major battles and military strategizing. A strong standing symbol of their perseverance and struggle for independence, Edinburgh Castle is one of the top tourist attractions in Scotland.


  • -

10 Best Places to Visit in Scotland

Category : Europe , Scotland

At first glance, the Scottish landscape is harsh: foreboding fortresses atop hills and cliffs, the desolate moors . . . But spend some time here and you’ll quickly realize Scotland has its own unique beauty: breathtaking highlands just made for hiking and strolling, craggy coastlines, monuments that are proud reminders of long-ago battles, and blue lakes and rivers just made for fishing. Scotland is a land of legends and romance, from Robert the Bruce and Macbeth to lake monsters and the tragic Mary Queen of Scots. And, yes, real men do wear skirts here. An overview of the best places to visit in Scotland:

10. Orkney

Orkney

 

Seventy islands, including 20 that are inhabited, make up the Orkney Islands, an archipelago off the north coast of Scotland. Orkney residents pre-date the Romans by several thousand years, and once were part of Norway. It has some of the best preserved and oldest Neolithic sites in Europe. The pre-historic Ring of Brodgar, a circle of stone formations used in rituals, is a must-see. The islands are a good place to see seals and puffins, as well as a variety of local art in galleries and museums. The capital Kirkwall is the largest town in the islands.

9. Glasgow

Glasgow

 

Now the largest city in Scotland, Glasgow dates back to prehistoric times on the River Clyde. The largest seaport in Britain, it was once an important hub for shipbuilding and trade with North America. It’s a good place to visit, where you can immerse yourself in friendship, charm and music – the city hosts 130 musical events on average per week. You’ll find historic medieval buildings such as the Glasgow Cathedral and the old Antonine Wall, a shopaholic’s paradise with more than 1,500 stores to tempt your pocketbook and a variety of sporting events. Stroll the hills above the city for wonderful views.

8. St Andrews

St Andrews

 

People go to St. Andrews, a town northeast of Edinburgh, for many reasons. They go to learn: The University of St. Andrews is the third oldest in the English-speaking world. They go to play golf: St. Andrews is the home of golf and the most frequent venue in the Open Championship. They go to relax: St. Andrews is a pleasant coastal resort town. They go for history: to see St. Andrews Castle sitting on a cliff overlooking the sea and city. Or, they may go to pray: St. Andrews Cathedral was once the largest cathedral in Scotland; it’s now in ruins.

7. Inverness

Inverness

 

Britain’s most northern city, Inverness, is the gateway to the Scottish Highlands. Located at the northern end of Loch Ness, Inverness is a good place to visit in Scotland if you like to walk. Walk along the River Ness to the Ness Islands, the Caledonian Canal or the Churches Along the River. Stroll, too, through Old Town with its old stone buildings and a Victorian market where you can buy crafts. Take a walk by the 19th century Inverness Castle, but don’t expect to see the inside unless you’ve been naughty as the castle currently provides local court service in Scotland. In that case, you may want to say a prayer at the lovely Inverness Cathedral.

6. Loch Lomond and the Trossachs

Loch Lomond and the Trossachs

 

Aye, Loch Lomond is a bonnie lake. ‘Tis not wee by any means, since it’s the largest inland lake in Great Britain. The lake contains more than 30 islands, including Inchmurrin, the largest island in freshwater in the British Isles. In 2002, it was combined with Trossachs, a small woodland glen, to make the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. Scenery, including seven waterfalls, will take your breath away. Outdoor activities abound, beginning with fishing, golf and easy walks and ending with camping, bicycling and climbing. Plan to visit Inchcailloch to see ancient church ruins and burial ground.

5. Stirling

Stirling

 

The wolf is an honored animal in the central Scotland city of Stirling. According to local legend, a wolf howled when Vikings were about to invade, thus alerting villagers to the attack so they could save their homes. Stirling is a good place to see a medieval Scottish town, complete with imposing fortress, 12th century castle and church where Mary Queen of Scots’ son King James VI was crowned in 1557. The Church of the Holy Rude still conducts services on Sunday. Stirling also was the stomping grounds of the legendary Robert the Bruce.

4. Glencoe

Glencoe

 

One of Scotland’s best known glens or valleys, Glencoe is stunningly beautiful in its sometimes harshness. Located 26 km (16 miles) south of Fort William, Glencoe is nestled between hills and mountains, including the pyramid-like Buachaille Etive Mor. As you travel through this U-shaped valley, be on the lookout for the monument commemorating the 1692 Massacre at Glencoe when the Argylls ambushed the MacDonalds. Glencoe is very popular with hikers and rock climbers with trails that are accessible from the road. Glencoe is especially popular with winter climbers and skiers since it’s the ski area closest to Glasgow.

3. Hebrides

Hebrides

 

If you like Scottish Gaelic literature and music, the Hebrides Islands is just the place to indulge your passions. An archipelago off Scotland’s west coast, the Hebrides are known for this culture. It is here that George Orwell wrote 1984. The windswept islands have a quiet beauty to them. More than 50 islands, including the Isle of Skye, make up the Inner and Outer Hebrides. The islands have great beaches and you’re likely to see seals and seabirds. Pack those hiking boots because the Hebrides is all about the great outdoors.

2. Edinburgh 

Edinburgh

 

Located on the Firth of Forth, Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital and has served as the seat of Parliament since the 15th century. The city has oodles of things to see and do, and is the second most popular tourist destination after London in Great Britain. Of course, you’ll want to see its famous castle and Royal Mile, the main route through Old Town. Edinburgh is a city famous for its many festivals, including the Fringe, the world’s largest international arts festival, and the Military Tattoo. You may recognize the city as the setting for several movies, including The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and The Da Vinci Code.

1. Loch Ness

#1 of Best Places To Visit In Scotland

 

Most travelers visit Loch Ness with one thing in mind: They want to see Nessie, the legendary lady of the lake. You probably won’t see the Loch Ness Monster, but a cruise on the lake is a fun way to search. Loch Ness is quite deep, more than 230 meters (750 feet) in some places, offering plenty of hiding places for Nessie. It’s huge too, holding more fresh water than all the lakes in England and Wales combined. Take a stroll along the lake or visit quaint villages, including Drumnadrochit, home of the Loch Ness exhibition center, scattered around the lake.


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10 Top Tourist Attractions in Croatia

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Category : Croatia , Europe

With its rocky, indented shore and more than a thousand islands, Croatia boasts one of the most beautiful stretches of coastline that Europe has to offer. In addition, many of Croatia’s coastal towns and cities have a fascinating history and are filled with the historical remains of Roman and Venetian times. A list of the top tourist attractions in Croatia.

10. Gornji Grad 

Gornji Grad

 

Gornji Grad is the medieval core of Zagreb and translates as Upper Town. It developed as two separate towns, Kaptol, the seat of the Bishop, and Gradec, the free town where tradesmen and artisans lived. The towns merged in the 1770s to form the northern section of historic Zagreb. The focal point of Gornji Grad is the square around St. Mark’s Church, the parish church of Old Zagreb.

9. Euphrasian Basilica 

Euphrasian Basilica

 

The 6th century Euphrasian Basilica is the top attraction of Poreč, a 2,000 year old town in Istria. It is one of the best examples of early Byzantine architecture in the Mediterranean region and, for the most part, has retained its original shape, though accidents, fires and earthquakes have altered a few details. The present basilica was built on the site of an older basilica during the period of Bishop Euphrasius. The wall mosaics were executed by Byzantian masters and the floor mosaics by local experts.

8. Mljet

Mljet

 

The island of Mljet is one of the larger islands off the coast of Southern Croatia. With 72% of the island covered by forests and the rest dotted by fields, vineyards and small villages, Mljet is a perfect place to relax. The island contains two salt lakes, Veliko and Malo Jezero, that are located at the western end of the island. In the middle of Veliko Jezero, there is a small island with an old Benedictine monastery.

7. Diocletian’s Palace

Diocletian's Palace

 

Diocletian’s Palace in Split was built by the Roman emperor Diocletian in preparation for his retirement. He lived out his retirement in his palace tending to his vegetable gardens. After the Romans abandoned the site, the Palace remained empty for several centuries. In the 7th century nearby residents fled to the walled palace to escape invading barbarians. Since then the palace has been occupied, with residents making their homes and businesses within the palace basement and directly in its walls. Today many restaurants and shops, and some homes, can still be found within the walls.

6. Pula Arena 

Pula Arena

 

The amphitheater in Pula is the sixth largest surviving Roman arena and one of the best preserved Roman monuments in Croatia. The Pula Arena was built around the 1st century AD and could seat over 26,000 spectators. In the 15th century many stones were taken from the amphitheater to build houses and other structures around Pula, but fortunately this practice was stopped before the whole structure was destroyed. Today it is a popular Croatia attraction and used to host a variety of festivals and performances during the summer months.

5. Korcula

Korcula

 

The sixth largest Croatian island, Korcula is separated from the mainland by a narrow strait. The island’s capital is also called Korcula. Nicknamed”Little Dubrovnik”, this ancient city is among the most beautiful towns on the Croatian coast and is known for its unique architecture. One of the main attractions is the alleged house of birth of Marco Polo. The biggest and the most beautiful building of Korcula is the Cathedral of St. Marco, built in Gothic-Renaissance style and completed in the 15th century.

4. Rovinj 

Rovinj

 

Rovinj is one of the most picturesque towns in the Mediterranean. With its pastel-colored houses clustered together on steep winding streets it is a great place to wonder around. Rovinj is still an active fishing port and visitors can take a boat to the lovely offshore islands. The area around Rovinj has been described as an “outstanding scenic wonder” because of the pristine beauty of the indented coastline and its forests.

3. Hvar

Hvar

 

Island Hvar and especially Hvar town is one of the most popular attractions in Croatia. Olive groves, fruit orchards, and lavender fields make up a large part of the agricultural landscape. Hvar town, set in a picturesque natural bay, with the Pakleni island chain protecting it to the south, is a popular port for yachts sailing around the Adriatic, especially in the summer months. Starigrad, the oldest village on the island, and Jelsa, as well as a smattering of small villages, dotting the coast or nestled in the lush interior are also well worth a visit.

2. Plitvice Lakes

Plitvice Lakes

 

The Plitvice Lakes are considered to be one of the most beautiful natural destinations in Europe. Due to its natural beauty and significance, this system of 16 interlinked lakes and a large forest complex around it were set aside as a national park in 1949. The beautiful Plitvice Lakes are famous for their unique colors, including azure, green, blue, and gray. The area around the lakes is home to an extremely wide variety of animal and bird species. Rare fauna such as the European brown bear, wolf, eagle, owl, and lynx can be found here, along with many more common species.

1. Dubrovnik 

#1 of Tourist Attractions In Croatia

 

Nicknamed “Pearl of the Adriatic”, Dubrovnik is one of the most prominent tourist attractions in Croatia and the Mediterranean. The walled city was built on maritime trade. In the Middle Ages it became the only city-state in the Adriatic to rival Venice and achieved a remarkable level of development during the 15th and 16th centuries. Dubrovnik is steeped in stunning architecture and sculptural detail, and boasts spectacular churches, monasteries, museums, fountains and the famous walls that surround the old city.


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10 Best Beach Resorts in Croatia

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Category : Croatia , Europe

The Central European country of Croatia boasts a long and scenic coastline along the Adriatic Sea. It is a top travel spot for Europeans in search of a beach getaway, and many travelers from around the world are discovering the appeal of Croatia’s coast. As a result, there are lots of fantastic beach resorts to choose from in Croatia. Many offer access to the Adriatic, excellent amenities and breathtaking views. If you’re planning an upcoming beach getaway, choose one of these stunning beach resorts in Croatia for a luxurious and memorable experience.

10. Hotel Bellevue Dubrovnik

Hotel Bellevue Dubrovnik

 

Just minutes from the medieval city walls of Dubrovnik is the Hotel Bellevue. The hotel is located on a cliff that overlooks the Adriatic, and many of the rooms offer private glass balconies with views right onto the water. There is a private beach just for guest use, and there is also a heated indoor pool, a steam room, a hot tub and a sauna. You can enjoy fresh seafood, or you can unwind with a delicious meal at one of the two onsite restaurants found within the hotel.

9. Hotel Amabilis

Hotel Amabilis

 

The Luxury Hotel Amabilis in the village of Selce is a sleek and contemporary structure that overlooks the Adriatic Sea. The rooms are chic and modern, featuring amenities like flat-screen television, wireless Internet and even upgrades like terraces or sea-view balconies. The hotel is located next to the Muzej Grada Crikvenice, and visitors can cycle or take a taxi to the nearby Crikvenica Beach. Chic Mediterranean style restaurants boast floor-to-ceiling glass to take advantage of the spectacular view. You can also enjoy fantastic amenities like bars, a fitness facility and a spectacular spa.

8. Hotel Excelsior Dubrovnik

Hotel Excelsior Dubrovnik

 

The Hotel Excelsior is housed in a manor that dates back to 1913. Boasting views of the Adriatic as well as the Old Town of Dubrovnik, the hotel is a stunning way to step back in time. While the hotel itself boasts plenty of history and heritage, guests will enjoy modern amenities. You’ll appreciate the flat-screen televisions, designer toiletries and 24/7 room service. There’s also a private beach for exclusive guest use, three amazing eateries on the property, an indoor pool, a spa and a full fitness facility.

7. Le Meridien Lav Split

Le Meridien Lav Split

 

On a private beach just a few miles from the city of Split, you’ll find Le Meridien Lav Split. This Croatian resort is designed for upscale relaxation, and it boasts the incredible Diocletian Spa and Wellness Centre, which is packed with saunas, steam rooms, meditation rooms, a fitness center and a range of pampering treatments. If you’re excited about recreational activities, you can choose from four championship courts in the onsite Tennis Academy or sailing and scuba diving at the Water Sports Centre.

6. Hotel Croatia Cavtat

Hotel Croatia Cavtat

 

Just 20 minutes outside of the hustle and bustle of Dubrovnik is the Hotel Croatia Cavtat, which is situated on a beach overlooking the Adriatic Sea. This is an upscale hotel, and the bright white architecture is modern but with plenty of Mediterranean influences. Polished rooms offer private balconies and terraces, and some suites even include living and dining rooms as well. Guests will love dining at five private restaurants on the property, not to mention the indoor pool, two private beaches and the extensive spa facilities.

5. Amfora Hvar Grand Beach Resort

Amfora Hvar Grand Beach Resort

 

Less than a 15-minute walk from the Hvar Ferry Terminal and the Hvar Cathedral is the Amfora Hvar Grand Beach Resort. Overlooking both the Adriatic Sea and the Paklinski Islands, the resort offers breathtaking waterfront views. Rooms are stylish and contemporary, and upgraded suites offer bonuses like balconies with sea views. All guests will have access to the outdoor pool, the rooftop gym, the 1930s-themed beach club and several onsite drinking and dining options.

4. Park Plaza Verudela Pula

Park Plaza Verudela Pula

 

A mere four-minute walk to the beach, the Park Plaza Verudela Pula is a large and beautiful resort. The rooms at the hotel are modern and comfortable, offering amenities like satellite television and kitchenettes. The resort is large, boasting shops, cafes and even a supermarket where you can pick up a few grocery items for your stay. You can swim in the outdoor pools, tee off at the fun minigolf course or play a game of tennis or racquetball with friends. Diving and snorkeling can also be arranged right from the hotel.

3. Falkensteiner Club Funimation Borik

Falkensteiner Club Funimation Borik

 

Less than a mile from the Venetian and Roman ruins in the city of Zadar is the Falkensteiner Club Funimation Borik. This resort is all-inclusive, delivering great value along with a memorable getaway experience. Bright rooms with natural sunlight are comfortable and modern, but the facilities at the hotel are the main attraction. A full spa is the perfect place to unwind, and you’ll also have access to indoor and outdoor pools, waterslides, a fitness center, tennis courts and special supervised programs for kids. The Falkensteiner Club Funimation Borik is a especially popular spot for families.

2. Valamar Dubrovnik President Hotel

Valamar Dubrovnik President Hotel

 

This high-end resort just outside of Dubrovnik is the place to be during the summer. As a seasonal resort, the Valamar Dubrovnik President Hotel is incredibly popular during the warmer months of the year. The terraced building means that many of the rooms boast private balconies with views of the Adriatic. Beach access is just steps from your room, and there is also a gym, an indoor pool and a spa. Guests love the complimentary breakfast buffet available in the onsite restaurant, which provides sea views with your morning meal.

1. Hotel Dubrovnik Palace

#1 of Best Beach Resorts In Croatia

 

The beachfront Hotel Dubrovnik Palace is exactly what the name suggests: A modern-day palace right on the beach. The hotel is sophisticated, and the decor is tasteful and elegant. Most rooms boast balconies or terraces, and the larger rooms and suites also offer private living rooms and whirlpool tubs. Complimentary breakfast is served each morning with a sea view, and the 10th floor is home to a healthy restaurant with lots of fresh local fruits and vegetables. There is also a high-end spa, a large fitness facility and indoor as well as outdoor pools.