Best places for students to travel in Europe

A comprehensive students’ travel guide to Europe

We all know that the precious time we enjoy as a student is perhaps the best period in our lives. Being carefree, travelling, going out, meeting new people, trying out new cuisines and trying to find the best bargains, are some of the small joys of the student life. Who wouldn’t want to enjoy all of these?

A travel plan is always a welcome break from the rigorous, demanding routine of academic life. College tends to sap a great deal of energy from students, and school breaks can be significant for recouping, so you can return to the curricular life with renewed vigour and enthusiasm. And what better way to regain your vibrance and your zest for the good life, than to visit and explore Europe?

When you’ve got that summer break or short winter vacation, you can spare a couple of weeks to travel and gather invaluable experiences, which will most certainly hold you in good stead in your life.

You might not know much about student-friendly European tourist destinations, which is why we thought we’d lend you a helping hand. Don’t sweat it though; the continent is as diverse as can be, and you will not run short of ideas or avenues to explore.

With so much on offer, how do you know where the best destinations for student travel in Europe are? To simplify things, we’ve compiled a list of the top cities for your next school break in Europe, based on the ease of travelling there, cost effective and the most memorable adventures you can add to your bucket list.

We’ve ranked the best places for students to travel in Europe on holiday.

1. Madrid

One of the best destinations for your holiday is Madrid, especially if you are an arts or an engineering major, or quite simply, have a deep sense of appreciation for architecture. However, Madrid is not only full of historical monuments but also places to party: clubs, bars and cafes, which means you can balance your studious side with your playful side here. From the tourist area of ​​Lavapies to the fashionable Salamanca district, young people can try entertainment for every taste here, and come back with amazing memories!

Madrid is divided into several barrios, neighbourhoods or districts, each with its own character, sights and ambience, which is a testament to its wonderfully planned nature. One of the best ways to get to know the city is to explore it one district at a time, so you can appreciate all its nuances. Madrid’s public transport system works well, allowing you to easily travel to the city’s main places of interest and then simply enjoy walking around and taking in the sites. With so much culture on offer, you’re bound to have a great time getting lost in the by lanes, while creating a fabulous memoir in Spain’s capital city.

2. Paris

Decadent pastries, colourful macarons, strolls alongside the Seine past the Notre Dame and across the Pont des Arts – Paris is the city that real-life dreams are made of.

One of the world’s most romantic and beautiful cities, with grand boulevards and small courtyards alike, Paris has always captivated the imagination of those looking to experience beauty at close quarters. Grab some cheese and a bottle of wine, the quintessential accompaniments of the fine Parisian life, and enjoy a picnic overlooking the Eiffel Tower with your friends, to forget about all the tedium of study, if only for a while.

France’s capital city attracts youth with museums, music, and historic buildings. It is the ideal variant for spring break, for those who want to unwind at a place that’s home to leisure and luxury, as well as stunning architecture and rich heritage.

3. Berlin

It has a history unlike anywhere else, after it was split in two for almost five decades following the war. Visit the remains of the Berlin Wall and the many free museums, and imagine what life might have been like for students during the divide, for you to appreciate just how blessed student life is, in countries that are free from the ravages of war. Now well known for its arts and alternative scene, Berlin is a great place to enjoy a school break, as well as an amazing source of inspiration for those with a special interest in history.

Its iconic sights and laid-back attitude make it feel like one big international village, which is why you will be able to interact with a whole global students’ community here. Quickly becoming the start-up capital of Europe, Berlin is a mecca for students who might want to break into the technology scene and a haven for trying out new ideas, partly why it is recognised as an innovation hub sans parallel.

Add to this delicious melting pot, a top-notch party scene with everything from basement clubs to fancy cocktail bars, and you know you can’t really put a foot wrong in this blessed land.

Known as the hipster capital of Europe, Berlin is a modern city laced with familiar history and a promising future. From the Nazi era up until the fall of the Berlin Wall, Berlin struggled to find itself; but now it is a city thriving with culture and nightlife. Spend the days lost in museums and history, and the nights checking out the 24-hour bar and restaurant culture to soak in the scenery and learn from its intricate fabric. Also, don’t forget to try a currywurst. And don’t ask us what it exactly is, you’ll know it when you get there!

4. Budapest

To many, Hungary is the wild wild west, or east that is, geographically speaking, of course! Still coming into their own after becoming a democracy, Budapest is one of the most unique cities you’ll visit during your travels in Europe, and one of the most interesting and engaging too.

Split in half by the River Danube, the city is always bubbling with much promise and potential – underground caves under Buda, thermal hot spring baths in Pest, raging nightlife, and delicious, stick to your ribs cuisine, and so much awesomeness in general, that you might never want to leave. Relax with old or new pals in the famous Szechenyi thermal baths – a perfect way to chill following relentless exploration of the two cities of Buda and Pest.

Afterwards you can grab a drink in one of Budapest’s many Ruin Pubs, set up in previously abandoned buildings with mismatched and eclectic décor – a hark back to the golden old era. But Budapest isn’t just an above ground destination; there’s so much more you will find in its inner layers. There are caves in the Buda hills, cold war bunkers and underground railways, so plenty of history to discover too, for those who would like to learn about what the bygone age was all about. A WWII memorial on the Danube is both moving and thought provoking – and acts as a perfect crescendo, to end your trip on a memorable note.

5. Barcelona

Stroll the cobblestone lanes of the Gothic Quarter and sample top notch tapas and sangria. This cosmopolitan capital is a must for all student travel in Europe bucket lists.

Known for its architecture as much for its football team, the Sagrada Familia and other landmark buildings designed by Antoni Gaudí dotted around the city have to be seen to be believed.

View Barcelona from above on the Montjuïc Cable Car or from Park Güell, the culmination of Gaudí’s art in a public park. Temperatures take a dip in the winter, but crisp sunny days and fewer tourists mean it’s still a fantastic short school break destination.

The vibrant Catalan culture is enough of a reason to visit this Spanish city, not to mention the delicious food, beautiful architecture, and sunny beaches. Get your rest before heading to Barca because you’ll find yourself exploring all day and then partying until the sun comes up. Make sure to take in traditional Sardana dances and a Flamenco show to get your fill of the city’s people and traditions.

6. Prague

There’s a reason Prague always appears on top European travel lists – because it has a bit of everything, to captivate your imagination and whet your appetite for exploration. A student trip can’t go wrong in a city with one of the most beautiful Old Town Squares surrounded by colourful building facades, and some of the cheapest and best beer in Europe – an undeniable savoury combination for those traveling on a shoestring budget. Prague boasts of the perfect mix of historic elegance and party life, which makes for an ideal break from study. If you can spare time for a day long getaway, the nearby Cesky Krumlov is one of the quaintest towns in Europe to explore and absorb. It’s known as mini-Prague, complete with a Castle and beautiful old buildings surrounded by a river – a scenery that transports you to a different world altogether.

Known as the city of spires, Prague is a must-see on most people’s lists, for its rich architectural and cultural lineage. As one of the only places that wasn’t levelled during the war, the architecture in Prague is simply a treat for the eyes and a feast to the senses. A stroll along the river looking at the castle will make you fall in love with the city that’s prominently featured in the must-visit places for students in Europe. If you’re up for the cold, visit Prague during the winter months when it gets transformed into a magical Christmas village famous for the markets and hot wine.

7. London

Samuel Johnson once famously said, “…when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life,” and we would have to agree on that, because of all the fineries the world-famous city has to offer.

A melting pot of cultures, London has it all, and then some more. When you’re here, you will have earned yourself the chance of a lifetime – to visit those places you’ve always heard about like Oxford Street, Buckingham Palace and Piccadilly Circus. Haggle for a meal on Brick Lane, enjoy a slow, serene stroll down vibrant Southbank or visit Borough, Spitalfields and Portobello markets, to name but a few. London is full of hidden watering holes and unique bars of every style and concept imaginable, so there is surely something to satisfy everyone in the student group.

A favorite urban center, each of London’s neighborhoods feels like another country with its own personality, cuisine, culture, and vibe. So much so, you’ll come to learn plenty and also appreciate the sheer depth of field, of this glorious travel destination. Go from borough to borough sampling the different flavors, and end your weekend catching the city’s institutions such as the London Eye, Buckingham Palace, or Speaker’s Corner in Hyde Park.

We hope this feature will equip you with plenty of insights, for you to plan an epic journey to the best students’ travel destinations in Europe. Like a good student should, we recommend you research all the stops you plan to take on your journey, so that you can get the best out of the priceless experience that Europe is!

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