Are you feeling like planning out any future trips to some of the most beautiful and interesting lands around the world? In this article, we’re going to look at some of the best European tours around different parts of the Old Continent, as they can offer a variety of experiences that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to get. Since Europe is such a large place, there are a whole host of different cultures that are available to be experienced by those who are willing to go on these tours.
These tours can offer a better experience than individual travel, as it takes the logistics and planning that can drag the excitement down and removes that from your thought process. Not to mention in countries where you have no idea what local traditions, behaviours or the language is, you can have some help dealing with that. Whether it is one of the western Europe tour packages, northern European tours, central European tours and all the others, they can really make an experience of your lifetime. So with all of that out of the way, let’s hop right into our list of the best European tours!
Best Guided Tours Of Europe – Top Picks + Reviews
Europe Escape By Expat Explore Travel
For those who want to explore a large variety of western Europe, the European Escape by Expat Explore Travel might just be the tour to look at. This is a 12-day tour that takes you around some of the largest and most famous cities in western Europe. You start in London, travel to Paris, across the Alps to Florence, to Pisa, Rome and Venice, then to Germany before finishing in the Netherlands and back to London. It’s a lot of miles in very few days and you will cover also some of the must-see destinations of the best Italy tours.
As to what the tour entails, there is plenty included, though not everything is covered by the initial cost. There are 11 nights of twin rooms, although there are options to purchase private single rooms. There are 11 breakfasts and 6 lunches already paid for, as well as 16 experiences (like guided walking tours, orientation walks and such) that are all included. What is not included is any international flights to get to London, travel insurance or certain tour excursions (like Paragliding or Skydiving in the Swiss Alps). So those will be additional costs that you’ll want to plan for. Otherwise, this is a brilliant tour that will show you a lot of Europe.
European Discovery By Contiki
In second place on our list of the best European tours, we have the European Discovery tour by Contiki. This tour has a similar path to our first pick, with 18 different destinations over 12 days. Once again, this starts in London, down to Amsterdam, through Germany and Austria, down to Venice, Rome and Florence, before coming back up through the Swiss Alps and travelling to Paris before a return to London.
Once again, there are 11 nights of twin rooms in hotels as well as 11 breakfasts and 5 dinners. Transport around the trips via coach is included, but international flights are not. There are a variety of additional experiences that you can pay extra for. These can range from a private gondola ride in Venice to a German Wine Tasting tour in the village of St. Goar. Once again, this tour is for those who want to experience many different cultures in a short amount of time. This is travelling through 7 different countries in 12 days, so you can get the maximum amount of sights, sounds and tastes of each of them.
London To The Mediterranean: Coasts & Cafés By G Adventures
Whereas the previous two choices of the best European tours have taken fairly similar paths around the continent, this one takes a little bit of a different one. Instead of going down central Europe, into Italy and back up into France, this time we start in London and head down to Italy before turning west into Spain. Half of the 22 day tour is spent in Spain and Portugal, as you leave Nice to Barcelona after a tour of Rome, Pisa, Cinque Terre and the Italian Riviera.
There are a lot of events included in this package. A cooking class in Barcelona, free times in Rome, Paris and Barcelona, and so on. The train, flights and public buses are all included once the tour has started, as well as all 20 nights (and an overnight train). 1 lunch is included, which is not great. You’ll want to pack around $730-950 USD for those meals not included. This tour is for those who want to travel more of Iberia and Italy rather than Bavaria and Austria on their tour. It’s also a longer tour than the previous choices.
Barcelona to Rome By Intrepid Travel
An exploration of the Mediterranean coast, this tour is for those who want to soak up the sun in Spain, France and Italy. You’ll experience Barcelona, the Pyrenees mountains, Provence, Nice, La Spezia, Cinque Terre, Florence, Siena and Rome. These are all packed into a 15-day tour, so you’ll get a decent amount of time to explore most of the locations that you’re at.
What is included in the tour is 12 breakfasts and 1 lunch, as well as 14 nights at various hotels. The transports during the tour (including buses, metros, trains and so on) are all included as well. Some activities are included, such as a day trip to Siena, hiking in the Pyrenees, an amphitheatre visit in Arles and so on. There are a whole host of optional activities available that will cost extra, as well as the dinners and meals that aren’t covered. Specifically, these are in Barcelona, Nice, Florence and Rome. This makes for one of the best travel packages to Europe, as it doesn’t pack in too much while offering a nice variety.
Cruise The Norwegian Fjords By G Adventures
Travelling from western and southern Europe to the far northern reaches, we now have one of the best northern European tours from G Adventures. Cruise the Norwegian Fjords allows for a unique experience of travelling through areas like Trollfjord, Svartisen, Vikingen, Lovund and so on. Then there are cities like Trondheim and Ålesund before you leave Norway and head onto the northern reaches of Scotland. Finish the tour as you arrive at Edinburgh, having seen some of the northernmost reaches of what Europe has to offer.
Because you do spend so much time on a boat, there are a lot of elements that have to be provided for. There are 12 breakfasts, 11 lunches and 12 dinners all provided for over the 13-day journey. There are waterproof boots and parkas provided for with most elements being provided for. This is a tour for those who want to see some of the northern elements of Europe without having to pay for or decide too much on what to do independently. In that regard, it might make for one of the better family European tours (with kids who are 10+), as it is almost completely guided.
Trekking Mont Blanc By G Adventures
On the complete opposite side of the previous northern European tour, we have the “Trekking Mont Blanc” by G Adventures. This is a rather physically challenging tour, as it’s entire focus is climbing through the Alps. You will pass through France, Italy and Switzerland as you travel to the high altitudes of the mountains.
While this is one of the most unique European tours here, it is a fairly simple one. You start in the town of Chamonix and travel up the mountain of Mont Blanc before coming back down and ending in Chamonix. There’s a fair amount of hiking, but also cable cars and buses. There are 4 nights and 5 mountain refuges that are included, as well as 9 breakfasts and 5 dinners. You might want to take some more money (around $250 USD) for any meals that are not included. It’s an active tour, so you’ll want to prepare for some movement compared to some of the other tours listed here.
Balkan Adventure By Intrepid Travel
One of the best European tours that we’ve got here is a movement to the east. The Balkan Adventure by Intrepid Travel takes a look at some of the most underrated locations in Europe. It is a 15-day tour that starts in Budapest before travelling through 4 other countries in the region. You’ll see the capital of Bosnia & Herzegovina in Sarajevo, the capital of Serbia in Belgrade, Kotor in Montenegro before finishing at the famous set of King’s Landing in Dubrovnik, Croatia.
As for what is included in the trip, there are 14 breakfasts and 1 dinner. The transport trains, buses, taxis, trams and other private vehicles are also included. There are hotels, guesthouses, a hostel and pensions that are also all included. You’ve got wine tastings included, cooking classes in Sarajevo, an orientation walk in Vukovar and more. There are also additional paid activities in the major cities like Dubrovnik, Belgrade and Budapest. This is one of the best eastern European tours that you’ll find, as it explores plenty of cities and areas that aren’t on the normal tourist’s destination list.
A Taste of Scandinavia By Intrepid Travel
Moving back north, this time we have one of the best 7 day european tours from Intrepid Travel. “A Taste of Scandinavia” is a tour that takes you to some of the biggest cities in southern Scandinavia. Specifically, you start in Copenhagen, travel to Malmo, Gothenburg, the Vrango Islands and finish in Oslo.
Since this is a comparatively short trip, there aren’t a whole lot of elements to include. There are 6 breakfasts included, while all the bus, ferries, bikes and other transports are covered alongside. It is a similar case with the 3 nights of hotels and 3 nights of pensions. There are some activities that are already included, such as the bike tour in Copenhagen and the trips on Vrango Islands depending on what time of year it is. These can be sea kayaking trips or an island tour. In each of the major locations (Gothenburg, Oslo and Copenhagen) there are also a variety of activities that you can pay extra for. This trip is a good one for those who just want a short, sweet experience of some of the northern European cities that have plenty to offer.
Greek Island Hopping By Contiki
Moving far to the southern reaches of Europe, this time we have a tour that seeks to give a view of the islands of Greece in one of the most popular Greece tours. The Greek Island Hopping tour by Contiki is a 13-day adventure that bounces from one island to another, giving you a lovely experience in the Aegean Sea and Sea of Crete. You start in Athens before travelling between Mykonos, Santorini, and Ios before heading back to Athens. This trip will give you plenty of chances to experience each of the locations you visit, seeing all that you can while there.
You get breakfast every day along the trip, as well as 4 dinners included in the initial payment. There are local guides to take you around locations at Athens and the islands, allowing you to get a deeper understanding and enjoyment of each. International and domestic flights are not included in the tour charge, so you’ll have to figure those out yourself. There are certain additional activities like a private cruise in Mykonos and a volcano cruise in Santorini that you’ll have to pay extra for if you wish to participate in them. But overall it’s a good trip for those who want to see the far south of Europe.
Best of Central Europe By Intrepid Travel
We end our list of the best tours in Europe with the “Best of Central Europe” tour by Intrepid Travel. As you might be able to tell, this tour is more focused on the center of Europe. Specifically, this tour takes you from Vienna to the Czech Republic with visits to Cesky Krumlov and Prague. You’ll then pass over to Poland, with Krakow being the major destination there. Then in the last 5 days of this 15-day tour, you shall pass through the Tatra Mountains and into Budapest.
As for what the tour includes, you’ll get 11 breakfasts along with 12 nights of hotels and 2 nights of pensions. Travel with the train, metro, buses and so on are similarly covered. There are also minor activities like a cycling trip in Cesky Krumlov and a gondola ride in Tatranska Lomnica. One of the downsides for this tour is the number of activities that require extra costs in Prague, Vienna, Krakow and Budapest. However, this is still one of the best central European tours thanks to the unique path it takes through 4 different countries.
Top Reasons Why You Should Book A Guided Tour To Europe
And that wraps up our list of the best European tours! Now we’re just going to go over some of the reasons why you should be taking these tours instead of going off on your own.
It’s Less Time-Consuming
Going through the process of trying to book the various hotels in the different European countries and cities, finding the ways you get transported around and trying to compensate for weather or other circumstances can take a lot of time and energy. This will all be removed by simply booking one of these private European tours, as all the logistics that can take months of preparation will be handled by someone else.
It’s Stress-Free + Cheaper
The logistics of the trip (as we’ve just described) can take a lot of time and a lot of energy. That, in turn, can build a lot of stress within you and the group that you are travelling with. If you are trying to meet certain deadlines on your own, but don’t understand what’s going on or don’t have everything perfectly in order, that can lead to a lot of pressure on you. The best Europe packages relieve that stress. You no longer have to worry about meeting your own deadlines, and instead just have to hop on whatever travel vehicle has been prepared for you. There are quite a lot of people who would prefer the second option, as it is simply easier.
On top of that, booking a guided tour of Europe can be cheaper than traveling on your own, especially when it comes to hotels and even restaurants since usually local guides better know where it’s best and more convenient to eat. You don’t need to spend a lot on a tour, you can find plenty of affordable travel packages to Europe.
You Can Learn More About European Cultures
Tour guides are often familiar with the region that you are exploring. After all, it is their job to take people through these areas and show them the history and elements that make them unique. Because of this, they are best suited to introduce you to the region and explain any questions you might have.
Such guides can be crucial in enjoying the experience, as they can make the difference between being confused and disappointed the entire time and reaching a new enjoyment of the trip.
And that concludes our list. Hopefully, this has given you some ideas on where to take a trip and how you might go about doing that. As always, we recommend doing your own research and figuring out which ones you could comfortably afford or would want to attend. Now get out there and get travelling!