With its layers of history and overlappingof cultures, Europe is a treasure trove of everything from the medieval and ancient tothe baroque and art nouveau.
Couple this with Arctic conditions in thenorth and beautiful Mediterranean climates in the south, and there’s a whole side ofnature to go with the main dish of culture that can be found in this wonderful continent.
Here’s a look at the top tourist attractionsin Europe: Number 25.
Leaning Tower of Pisa.
The world-famous leaning tower is known aroundthe globe for its incredible four-degree tilt that makes it seem as if the tower is aboutto topple over.
The amazing slanted belltower sits behindPisa Cathedral and was built in the Romanesque style.
Dating back to the 12th century, the towertook a whopping 199 years to complete, but began to slant during its construction dueto soft ground on one side.
Today, the tower – which stands at a wonky55.
86 meters tall – attracts tourists from far and wide.
Canals of Bruges.
The arteries of the old town, the canals ofBruges have long been the roadways that connect the city.
The canals were dug from a river for commercialshipping in order to move essential goods and supplies around the town.
Bruges’ inner canals mark the old city wallsand ramparts and make for a beautiful area to explore on foot or in one of the many touristboats.
Cruise past the numerous old overarching brickbridges, sail along small streams, and spot the scenic riverside houses.
Cliffs of Moher.
Located in Ireland’s County Clare, the Cliffsof Moher are an awe-inspiring sight.
The coastal cliffs are made up of steep 214meter stone and run for 14 km.
From the top of the cliffs, the Aran Islandscan be spotted across the sparkling waters.
The coastal walking paths along the cliffsmake for a fantastic ramble among the natural landscape, where you can glimpse the castle-likecliffs.
The cliffs have been the subject of many folktales and stories, and have been featured in numerous films, such as Harry Potter.
In 79 AD, Mount Vesuvius erupted with devastatingeffect.
Many small towns and settlements in the regionwere completely destroyed by the eruption, not least Pompeii.
Ironically, being buried under layers of ashthat fell from the volcano has led to an incredibly well-preserved snapshot of a Roman city frozenin the midst of a disaster.
Though a few valuables were taken throughthe centuries, the site was rediscovered and has been excavated since 1764.
Nowadays, visitors can walk around the ancientcity and marvel at preserved colorful murals and see the plaster casts of people and animalsin their final moments.
Meaning “elevated” in Greek, Meteora isa jutting rock formation in Northern Greece – a wild landscape made up of hill-likeboulders that dominate the skyline.
Part of what makes that magnificent landscapeso amazing, however, are the monasteries that precariously cling to the rocks.
Set on cliffs with staircases cut into thevery stone itself, this religious site dates back to the 15th century, and some still welcomevisitors to this day.
The most famous of all, the Holy Trinity Monastery, perches an amazing 400 meters atop a natural rock tower and is a breathtaking sight toset eyes on.
Officially the Basilica de la Sagrada Familia, this famously opulent church in Barcelona is the brainchild of the renowned Catalanarchitect Antoni Gaudi.
With work starting on the church back in 1882, 137 years later, the Sagrada still remains unfinished.
It is expected that the building will be completedin 2026.
Built in the art nouveau and gothic styles, the fantastical church has an impressive eight spires and ten that are yet to be constructed.
This amazing building draws crowds of touristswith twisting turrets, and surreal curves, while intriguing gargoyles make for somethingfrom another world and time entirely.
Tallinn Old City Once part of the trading alliance the HanseaticLeague, Tallinn was formerly an extremely prosperous city.
The riches of Tallin’s past can be seenbe in the Old City, which still retains its 13th-century city plan.
Authentically medieval, there are grand merchant’shouses and churches lining the cobblestone streets.
One of the major sites in this cultural andhistorical heart of the Estonian capital is the Town Hall Square, home to the gothic TownHall.
Elsewhere, you’ll find Estonia’s oldestchurch, the 13th-century cathedral of Saint Mary the Virgin.
Today, it’s not just the historic buildingsthat make the area so charming; there are also numerous bars and shops to enjoy too.
Tower Bridge Often mistakenly thought to be London Bridge, Tower Bridge is a late Victorian masterpiece showcasing the height of London’s standingon the world stage.
Opened in 1894, the bridge crosses the Thamesclose to the Tower of London, another London landmark.
The bridge itself is a drawbridge poweredby engine rooms which are located in the neo-gothic north and south towers, making this a featof 19th-century engineering.
The bridge is still in use to this day andhas even been modernized with lights that glimmer in the evening.
Neuschwanstein Castle One of the architectural projects of “Mad”King Ludwig II of Bavaria, Neuschwanstein Castle is the quintessential fairytale castle.
In fact, it was the castle’s soaring spiresand romanesque revival style that inspired Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty Castle.
Construction of the castle began in 1869, but sadly, Ludwig never got to live in his castle; he died in 1886, the same year ofthe castle’s completion.
Set in South Bavaria among forested mountainsand mirror-like lakes, the picturesque setting of the castle is as impressive as the buildingitself.
Mont Saint-Michel This famous fortified island is located arounda kilometer off the northwestern shores of Normandy in France.
Walking around Mont-St-Michel might feel asif you have been transported back to another time; the monastery here dates back to the8th century and is still in use today.
The old walls and chapels are intriguing placesto explore.
At high tide, waters make the island seemas if it is a floating fortress in the sea.
Previously only reachable by foot or car duringlow tide, the island can be reached at any time on foot along a bridge built in 2014.
Scottish Highlands The Scottish Highlands form a rugged, mountainousregion of Northern Scotland.
There are many things to do in amongst thedramatic scenery of this picturesque area.
There’s Glencoe Valley where red deer roamand waterfalls hide; close to here, Ben Nevis calls with the highest mountain peak in theUnited Kingdom.
Elsewhere, Loch Ness sits in the Central Highlandsand is where you can try to catch a glimpse of the legendary Loch Ness Monster, or simplytake a stroll and enjoy the serene atmosphere.
The Scottish Highlands are also home to Inverness, the largest city in the region.
Set in Northwest Slovenia close to the townof Bled is a gleaming emerald lake surrounded by stunning verdant hills.
Catch one of the old wooden boats over tothe small Bled Island in the middle of the lake.
The island is home to the Church of the Assumptionof Mary – a 17th-century building with some 15th-century gothic frescoes still intact.
Around this incredibly picturesque spot, there’salso Bled Castle, but one of the best things to do in the area is to simply stroll aroundthe lake and take a break for a swim in the calm waters.
Saint Basil's Cathedral Arguably the most iconic sight in Russia, this twisting Cathedral with its multi-colored onion domes is set in Moscow’s equally iconicRed Square.
St Basil’s Cathedral was built by Ivan theTerrible in 1555.
The structure is a madly bright lollypop ofstrange styles that seem more like a funfair and look unlike anything else in Russia.
Because of its unique architectural styleand its historic links to a victorious battle in Tatarstan, the cathedral is a symbol ofRussia.
Dubrovnik Old Town One of the most beautiful old towns in Europe, Dubrovnik’s Old Town is a red-roofed marvel that is asking to be explored.
Its ancient city walls jut out into the AdriaticSea, and its cobblestone streets hide a plethora of restaurants, bars, boutiques, and museums.
Dating back to the 16th century, the stonewalls boast baroque churches and crumbling buildings.
Built in 1573, Pile Gate marks the entrancethe Old Town with its remarkable renaissance arches – it’s particularly beautiful whenlit up at night.
The Dubrovnik Cable Car offers the opportunityto see the ancient streets of the city from above.
Canals of Amsterdam Amsterdam is well known for its canals.
In fact, there are more than 100 kilometersof canals weaving around the Netherland’s capital, forming around 90 islands and requiring1, 500 bridges to get around.
The waterways lead to Amsterdam being labeledthe ‘Venice of the North.
’ Dug in the 17th century, the canals were usedfor transportation, as sewers, as drinking water – a bit of everything.
In the modern city, the canals make up thecharming cityscape that Amsterdam is known for.
The canals are backed by 17th-century townhouses, adding even more to the charm factor.
Eiffel Tower Named after Gustave Eiffel, the unmistakablesymbol of Paris is a sight that must be witnessed when visiting the French capital.
Constructed between 1887 and 1889, the towerwas originally built to be the impressive entrance to the World’s Fair.
The tower stands at 324 meters tall and wasamazingly the world’s tallest man-made structure until the Empire State Building took the titlein 1930.
Take the lift all the way to the observationdeck of the tower and marvel at the views of the Parisian boulevard and pattern of parksbelow.
Prague Old Town The medieval Old Town of the Czech Republiccapital is bristling with historical sights, which is what makes it such a popular destination.
At its heart is the Old Town Square, whereyou’ll find the Old Town Hall, boasting an Astronomical Clock which dates back to1410, making it the oldest clock still in operation in the world.
Connecting the Old Town with the Lesser Townof Prague across the Vltava River is the Charles Bridge.
Construction on the bridge started in 1357but wasn’t completed until the early 15th century.
Around the Old Town, plenty of bars and abuzzing nightlife scene make for an enjoyable place to stick around after dark.
Peter's Basilica Located in Vatican City, St Peter’s Basilicais the biggest church in the world, and one of the most famous examples of Italian Renaissancearchitecture.
Construction began on this monument in 1506, with one of the architects being none other than Michelangelo.
This is where the Pope himself addresses thetens of thousands of worshippers who crowd the adjacent St Peter’s Square.
The current Basilica replaced the old St Peter’sBasilica, which stood in the same place from around 360 AD.
The church itself is thought to be built overthe tomb of St Peter.
Canals of VeniceVenice is the original canal city; every other canal city in the world is compared to Venice.
The enigmatic waterlogged city is the siteof more than 150 waterways and 400 bridges, including the famous Bridge of Sighs.
The main canal in Venice is the two-mile-longGrand Canal, which flows past St Mark’s Square and is lined with some of Venice’shistoric architecture.
Gondoliers punt visitors around wearing stripedshirts and wide-brimmed hats, but boats on the river are not just for tourists; theyare also used for everyday jobs such as rubbish collection.
Palace of Versailles.
Versailles is a monument like no other; whenit comes to palaces, Versailles definitely takes first place.
This grandiose building was the main residencefor French royalty from 1682 until the 1789 French Revolution.
The exterior of the castle is enchantinglyornate, but its interiors are no less impressive.
Some rooms inside the building are as famousas the palace itself, such as the Hall of Mirrors with its opulent gilded decoration.
The geometric gardens punctuated with conicaltrees and woven as canals and fountains.
Fjords of Norway One of the top reasons many people travelto Norway is to see its majestic fjords.
Shaped by glaciers over an incomprehensiblylong 2.
5 million years or so, the towering U-shaped valleys and their carved cliffs createa stunning landscape that’s almost too huge to take in.
Norway boasts over 1000 fjords, only a portionof which are visited en masse, meaning it’s still possible to find a slice of solitude.
Taking a cruise ship is a great way to seethe soaring walls of the fjords as the boat glides on the waters.
Alternatively, hiking atop the fjords offersa birds-eye-view of the incredible landscape.
Alhambra Built on the ruins of Roman fortificationsin 889, Alhambra is a combination palace and fortress situated in Granada, Spain.
For almost 1, 000 years, much of the Iberianpeninsula was ruled by the Islamic Moors, with Andalusia being their longest-held territory.
Today, you can explore its citadel, the oldestpart of the fortress, climb up its watchtower, explore the amazing Moorish gardens and courtyards, and be amazed at the delicate geometric patterns throughout the complex.
The setting on the backdrop of the SierraNevada makes Alhambra that much more mystical.
Hagia Sophia For almost 1, 000 years, Hagia Sophia was thebiggest cathedral in the world and is still a fantastic structure to set eyes on.
Originally built as an Eastern Orthodox Cathedralin 537 when Istanbul was named Constantinople, Hagia Sophia became an Ottoman mosque from1453 and is today a museum for all faiths to enjoy.
The dome of the Hagia Sophia is a marvel initself, and the building as a whole perfectly reflective of Byzantine architecture.
Walking around the building today, you canpiece together the history of the city with its intriguing murals and interesting artifacts.
Acropolis The Acropolis in Athens is a simply stunningsight.
This monumental hill is the location of anumber of ancient sites that date back to the 5th century BC.
Some of the attractions that crown the Acropolisinclude the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheum, and, of course, the Parthenon.
Constructed at the peak of the Athenian Empirein 447 BC, the Parthenon is a symbol of Greece and impresses with its innumerable columns.
After nightfall, the Acropolis is lit up witha glow that can be seen around Athens.
Colosseum The Colosseum is the perfect symbol of thepower of the Roman Empire at its height.
Dating back to 72 AD, it was designed to hold50, 000 spectators and was, at the time, the biggest amphitheater ever built.
Here, all manner of public spectacles wereshown – from animal hunts and executions to gory gladiator battles; it was even filledwith water for mock sea battles.
Although practically a ruin, the Colosseumis still very much an icon of Rome.
Step inside the arches and take a tour ofthe structure.
Sit and imagine yourself as a spectator inRoman times, and the grand displays and spectacles that went on inside the ring.