Europe is home to some of the most beautiful coastal cities in the world. Its top coastal cities offer amazing seafood, surreal landscapes and turquoise clear waters.
There’s a coastal city for every traveler type. If you want seclusion and less people, then visitors will find solice in the Albanian Riveria where the region remains untapped by visitors. For travelers looking for a luxurious coastal destination, Mallorca, Spain, and Biarritz, France provide, provide that luxury. Barcelona, Spain, and Cinque Terre, Italy, are perfect destinations for affordable vacations along Europe’s coast.
Here are the top 10 coastal cities to visit in Europe and why.
Lagos is located on Portugal’s southwestern coast. It makes up the beautiful Algarve region, where you find stunning beaches decorated with majestic rocky formations in the water and cliffs.
For the most picturesque experience, head to Ponta da Piedada. It’s not a beach because there’s no sand to lay on rather an experience. It’s a group of rock formations along the coastline with yellow-golden cliff-like rocks stretching more than 65 feet high. Ponta da Piedade is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Portugal.
Stretching along the Albanian Riviera is the beautiful coastal resort town of Sarandë. It’s an untapped destination with some of Europe’s most beautiful hotels and beaches. When visiting, head to Pulëbardha Beach. It’s a tranquil oasis hidden and surrounded by rocks and turquoise clear water.
Sarandë is also one of the safest places for you to travel. According to Visit Saranda, Albania’s safe reputation is embedded in the traditional culture, which includes the old “code of besa.” Besa translates to “faith” or “oath.” It refers to a pledge of honor. It means you should look out for each other and never break your promise.
Sardinia is the second largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and one of the 20 regions of Italy. On this island, you will find the coastal hidden gem of Cagliari. Cagliari is one of the most beautiful and exciting places in the world. There are thousands of years of history to explore, great beaches, and a diverse landscape, so you make the most of your trip with various activities.
You can sightsee, go on nature walks, explore the local cuisine on food tours and swim in clear blue waters that make locals proud.
Poetto Beach is a favorite among locals and visitors. It’s a small paradise steps away from the city, so you get the best of both worlds. You can relax during the day followed by a nice bar or lounge at night.
Mallorca is the largest island of Spain’s Balearic Islands, just off the Barcelona coast. The coastal city is a piece of heaven on Earth and has inspired writers, musicians and other artists.
There’s much to explore in Mallorca, so it’s best to start visiting the lively capital, Palma. Palma is a walkable city where you should visit must-see attractions, including the Cathedral, Es Baluard Museum, and the Bellver Castle.
The town of Soller should be next on your list to explore. The town’s cobbled streets are well-preserved, and you will find excellent restaurants and cafes during your visit.
Dalmatia Region, Croatia
Croatia’s southern region, known as Dalmatia, offers a healthy mix of adventure, history, stunning beaches, beautiful architecture, and excellent culinary and wine experiences. It’s a destination that lets you have it all.
Your visit to the Dalmatian Coast should include exploring Dubrovnik, the Makarska Riviera, Split, and Zadar.
The seaside city of Zadar is where visitors can see interesting historic sites, including churches, ancient Roman ruins and Venetian city gates. The Makarska Riviera is among the few places to find sandy beaches versus pebbled beaches.
Cinque Terre, Italy
If you’re looking for a destination in Italy that’s less popular than the Amalfi Coast, but just as stunning, head to Cinque Terre.
Cinque Terre tourism is a string of five old fishing villages that sit high on the Italian Riviera in the Liguria Region. According to Cinque Terre Tourism, the area was only accessible by rail or water until recently. Of the five towns, Monterosso is the largest. You will find sandy beaches, bars and restaurants here. The rest of the cities are worth exploring for the day.
Vernazza has beautiful houses, seafood restaurants, and bars, while Corniglia is best for nature lovers who enjoy hiking. Manarola has excellent views of the Sea, and Riomaggiore is the most romantic place to stay in Cinque Terre. Couples should visit for the sunset.
Ayia Napa, Cyprus
The southeast coast town, Ayia Napa, has picturesque beaches. It’s an incredible place to visit, as it’s surrounded by the best of Mother Nature. From the natural sea caves, formidable rock formations, and hidden passageways, the worst part about your visit will be leaving.
Don’t take your time or opportunity to visit Ayia Napa for granted. The iconic sea caves should be at the top of your itinerary list. There’s a reason why the sea caves here in Cyprus are known as some of the most beautiful in the world. Next, visit Nissi Beach, surrounded by golden sand and a relaxing environment. If you’re traveling with your significant other, check out the Love Bridge. It’s one of the most romantic landmarks in Cyprus.
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean. There’s no shortage of awe of fun in Sicily. There’s history that dates back centuries, ancient architecture, cathedrals and ruins across the island to explore. The island is surrounded by three seas. This means there are abundant resort-style beaches for the public to enjoy that contain white sands and sheltered coves.
San Vito lo Capo is one of the best beaches in Sicily. Crystal-clear waters and palm trees surround the town. Mondello Beach is one of the closest beaches to Palermo, known for its white sand and serene blue water.
For sand dunes, Sapieri Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in Sicily. It’s a different vibe than the other beaches in Sicily, mostly filled with rocky shores because of golden dunes.
Biarritz is a stylish coastal town on France’s southwestern coast. Its beaches and therapeutic environment make this coastal city stand out. Biarritz is also a surf town. The surf culture is embedded in its culture.
Biarritz has nearly four miles of beaches with fine sand and large amounts of seaweed. The seaweed adds iodine to the water, which can benefit the body. The ocean water is used for thalassotherapy in Biarritz. It is a form of therapy used by seawater.
La Côte des Basques, Plage de la Milady, Port Vieux Beach, Miramar, and La Grande Plage are the best beaches in Biarritz.
Another destination that offers the best of both worlds for relaxation and fun is Barcelona. It is a great coastal city in Europe that isn’t as expensive as Biarrtiz.
Barcelona is home to over a dozen beaches stretching across the Mediterranean. Playa de Barceloneta is one of the most popular beaches in Barcelona. It’s easily accessible by train, and it’s a great beach to catch a sunrise or sunset.
With Barcelona’s location on the Balearic Sea, seafood is one of the best things to consume. After your beach day, head to the Port Olimpic area for the best parties, beach clubs, and nightlife in the city.