London Tower Bridge, the UK. Sunset with beautiful clouds

The 15 Most Visited Cities n Europe

Multi-country holidaying gained popularity before COVID and is now a reality once again. European countries receive heaps of tourists, businessmen, digital nomads, and students on a Eurotrip. Everyone wants to see the sights and experience the culture after a month's or a day's work. The most popular city in Europe, London, received a total of over 20 million visitors in 2022.

With the world, your oyster again, visit Europe for cultural heritage, fashion, famous sights, and much more. You can choose one of these fifteen cities and see why it is so popular, or you can nomad around the continent, which has never been easier than now. With one currency in the European Union (EU) and a simple network of trains, you can experience the best of Europe on a short or extended getaway.

The 15 Most Visited Cities In Europe

  1. London, United Kingdom - 20,715,900
  2. Paris, France - 16,863,500
  3. Istanbul, Turkey - 12,121,100
  4. Antalya, Turkey - 10,729,300
  5. Rome, Italy - 9,703,200
  6. Prague, Czech Republic - 9,038,900
  7. Amsterdam, Netherlands - 8,476,600
  8. Barcelona, Spain - 6,726,000
  9. Milan, Italy - 6,513,000
  10. Vienna, Austria - 6,303,800
  11. Berlin, Germany - 5,770,900
  12. Madrid, Spain - 5,512,600
  13. Venice, Italy - 5,406,800
  14. Moscow, Russia - 5,404,500
  15. Dublin, Ireland - 5,185,000

1. London, United Kingdom - 20,715,900

City of London, Westminster, United Kingdom
London, Westminster, United Kingdom.

Unlike most destinations on this list, England is a kind of island nation, separated from Europe by the English Channel, that was only accessible by plane in the past. Now, London and the rest of Great Britain have train access, as well as bus routes and car access via the under-channel tunnel. Visit London for the famous architecture and to experience the huge punk and underground music scene, or if you are into football, shopping, or theater.

London is no longer part of the EU as of the Brexit vote in 2016, which changed the free movement between London and the Schengen Area. The largest airport, Heathrow, also has one of the strictest airport security systems, with many passengers subjected to lengthy checks. Nonetheless, this largest Western European city with the global language is home to the abbey, Queen's Palace, Big Ben, the bridges, and something for everyone. Visit its world-class museums, iconic West End shows, lovely parks, streets from the movie screen, pubs, and so much more.

2. Paris, France - 16,863,500

Paris Eiffel Tower and river Seine at sunset in Paris, France
Paris Eiffel Tower and River Seine.

The city of love is a dream destination for couples, romantics, and architecture and culture fans. Paris changed a lot over the past two decades, becoming both more glitzy and casual, with homelessness abounding and an increased crime. People from around the world visit Paris for shopping and food in between architectural sights that you can admire right from a terraced cafe or a brasserie. Visit the Arc de Triumphe and Sacre Coeur Basilica, and check out the alternative, gritty side of the city with modern art museums, innovative restaurants, special bars, and street markets. The modern-day French capital evokes scenes of olden-day romantic movies and fancy catwalks.

Although one of the more expensive cities in Europe, Paris has plenty of hostels, like many around the Gare du Nord. In addition, visit the gigantic Louvre Museum and the Musée d’Orsay on a free-entry day, with impressionist and post-impressionist masterpieces. Try French street food and find very cheap high-quality bread and croissants. A simple stroll through Montparnasse will envelop you in culture, while sight-shopping for the glamour at Galleries Lafayette does not have to cost a thing. Treat yourself to a glass of fine wine from the south of France or Angelina’s famed hot chocolate. Stroll along the Seine River, spliced by bridges and lined with art, and pick up something for your home along with relatively cheap souvenirs for friends and family.

3. Istanbul, Turkey - 12,121,100

Aerial view of boats in the harbor in Istanbul the capital of Turkey.
Istanbul, Turkey.

Visit this vibrant, third-most-popular city, and you will be on two different continents in one place. Istanbul is a big city, the largest in the country but not the capital, that spans both Europe and Asia. This popular city is one of the cheaper ones that you will notice, especially coming from Western Europe. Every year, Istanbul draws huge amounts of tourists from around the globe. The Muslim, tourist-friendly city is worth a visit, with a lot to see and experience for anyone.

Many visitors come from neighboring countries on both continents and a growing number of tourists hail from the EU. Istanbul is an awesome destination for historians, with a deep and vibrant past. Formerly known as Constantinople, it was the biggest city in the world. Check out the architecture from back in antiquity, amid modern attractions that make Istanbul an interesting and diverse place to visit.

4. Antalya, Turkey - 10,729,300

Old town (Kaleici) in Antalya, Turkey
Antalya, Turkey.

This modern resort city is the destination for beautiful beaches and dental tourism with high-end, affordable treatments that would cost thousands of dollars more in North America and other western European countries. The low fraction of dental costs is due to low overhead costs and government support for medical tourism, where clinics use the latest technologies and the competitive dental school only graduates the brightest students. Antalya is your picturesque dream, realized at affordable prices, together with a charming cultural vibe that makes you linger and want to return for more. Explore the intriguing history amid sites and nature on legendary hikes with postcard views. Visit the architectural, Athenian-built delight, the Hadrian's Gate, for a trip back in time. It stands encased in white marble with decorated reliefs of the native flora and fauna, honoring the Roman emperor, Hadrian, since the 2nd century.

The city on the Mediterranean Sea is most paradise-like along its Turquoise Coast, where, according to legend, Cleopatra fell in love with the crystalline waters of the Antalya seaside. One of the more than 20 beaches bears her name. Stroll along the Damlataş beach with its breathtaking natural namesake cave thriving for over 15,000 years through iconic stalactites and stalagmites, or the Lara Beach for families and a resort experience. Visit one encased by cliffs with a pirate's grotto if you are an Instagrammer or TikToker. Antalya's lower cost of living and prices result from low-cost utilities, which make operating a business cheaper. With a highly valued British pound, the favorable exchange rate makes it easy to splurge, where drinks and food are about four times cheaper in Antalya than in London.

5. Rome, Italy - 9,703,200

Piazza di Spagna square and fountain in Rome, italy
Piazza di Spagna, Rome, Italy.

Rome never goes out of style, with approximately 10 million tourists "stumbling onto those roads that lead to Rome." Visit Rome, in the country that produced the finest artists in history, and see their works in this magnificent city. Rome will enchant you as you walk around every corner, admiring ancient statues, columns, and criminally beautiful buildings. Peruse the museums and galleries and try the renowned Italian cuisine in the city, which has perfected the food scene like no other. From the best pizzas of your life to extravagant plates of pasta and desserts like authentic tiramisu with the finest coffees, you will savor every meal like the locals.

Visit the Colosseum, Pantheon, Forum Romanum, and Villa Borghese, and spend a whole afternoon by the Trevi Fountain or along the Spanish Steps. History enthusiasts often return, while more tourists from around the world continue to discover Rome each year. Go and see the Vatican, an independent state within Rome that is particularly popular among aesthetic fans, where you don't need another visa to gawk at the grandeur of St. Peter’s Square. Witness the Pope's weekly addresses to the Christian community, and visit museums with acclaimed masterpieces like the Sistine Chapel. Rome is touristy around the classic attractions but find those gem nooks and alleyways for some privacy.

6. Prague, Czech Republic - 9,038,900

Scenic spring sunset aerial view of the Old Town pier architecture and Charles Bridge over Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic
Prague, Czech Republic.

This popular Czech capital welcomes around 9 million travelers annually. Prague is a popular destination among the younger crowd, with something for everyone and stunning architecture, including many castles. Check out the incredible astronomical clock and stop by the old Charles Bridge. The beautiful city boasts a vibrant party scene where good beer is one of the cheapest drinks on the market, and only a few other places can compete with Prague's nightlife.

Prague is a small modern metropolis in Eastern Europe with a climbing number of visitors. It is one of Europe's most interesting cities, with more affordable options to stay in than in Paris and London, making it perfect for a weekend getaway to explore most of the city on foot. Take the picturesque tram and admire a blur of different architectural styles. You will find Gothic, Baroque, Art Nouveau, and Cubism standing side by side. Visit the stunning churches and head to a local bar or one of the many award-winning breweries. Sit outside with a chilled beer and look up, as there is a lot to see in the "City of a Hundred Spires."

7. Amsterdam, Netherlands - 8,476,600

Channel in Amsterdam Netherlands houses river Amstel landmark old european city spring landscape
Amsterdam, Netherlands.

With about 8.5 million travelers a year, Amsterdam is popular among younger tourists for the marijuana scene and to see the red light district. It is also a common city for layovers and when traveling through Europe by train. You will notice that citizens enjoy a high standard of living, along with a large ex-pat community. Amsterdam attracts with its sights and unique ability to join old and new, like the impressive contemporary buildings against the backdrop of colorful traditional homes along the beautiful channels. See the artworks and witness architecture on a stroll, then head to the countryside to sight those windmills.

Visit some of Europe’s most famed museums, like the Anne Frank House, where the young girl and her family hid during World War II for over two years. While in hiding, Anne Frank kept a diary, which became a worldwide bestseller describing the Holocaust. The Van Gogh Museum hosts masterpieces and self-portraits by the great artist. Rent a bike to move around the city like the locals along the well-adapted pathways and experience the open-minded culture, history, art, and many canals and harbors. Amsterdam is one of the world's most recognizable cities, with easy access via rail connections to Germany, Belgium, and France. Amsterdam-Schiphol Airport is one of Europe’s best, with globe-wide connections.

8. Barcelona, Spain - 6,726,000

Park Guell, Barcelona at sunset
Park Guell, Barcelona, Spain.

Visit this capital of the Catalonia region in Northern Spain, and you will never be able to forget its salsa scene. Barcelona awaits you with a gawk-worthy spectacle around each corner, like the unfinished Sagrada Familia and the otherworldly Casa Battló. The tech hub for people around the world is also famous for its architecture, mountain biking, and beach scene. The city will give you what you desire most out of a visit, but make sure to experience all its vibrant sides. Come during the summer, when each barrio, or neighborhood, organizes a unique fiesta, a dancing scene of locals and tourists alike, with partying through the night.

Immerse yourself in the perfect blend of city experience and beach life in Iberia, a precious area along the Mediterranean coast. Head to the must-visit Gothic Quarter in Barcelona, with its magnificent architecture and the huge Camp Nou stadium that hosts FC Barcelona. Before the pandemic, Barcelona had been losing annual visitors. With the numbers on the rise once again, the city is trying to find the right balance. While the capital of Spain is Madrid, Barcelona remains the country's most popular city, soon to reach 7 million visitors a year.

9. Milan, Italy - 6,513,000

View of Como Lake, Milan, Italy, on sunset with Alps mountains in background
View of Como Lake, Milan, Italy.

The fashion capital of the world is the second-largest and second-most-visited city in Italy and the ninth-most visited on the continent. Half a millennium after the Italian Wars, Milan emerged as the world's most elegant city that shines through creativity and the arts. Milan impresses with art deco and a mix of futuristic and historical architecture. Check out the impressive art collection throughout the city's galleries, including the awe-inspiring pieces at the Triennale Design Museum with friendly owners who are eager to tell you more.

Visit the many fashion houses, showrooms, and boutiques where the owners know that fashion-hungry tourists may want to enjoy the eye candy but are unable to afford the luxury pieces. Enjoy the renowned nightlife and binge on the rich, Mediterranean-influenced Milanese cooking, focused on healthier components like seafood, vegetables, and olive oil. Milan felt a drop in tourism through the pandemic, but the city with style in everything that it creates is bound to bounce right back.

10. Vienna, Austria - 6,303,800

Vienna sunset
Vienna, Austria.

The acculturated capital of Austria is a city of music and monarchs that knows its worth. Vienna is the historical beating heart of Europe, both figuratively and literally, as its central counterpart. Visit the countless independent bookstores and a surprising number of family attractions like amusement parks and a highly-regarded zoo. The impeccable city is both the definition of charm and one of Europe's most influential cities, having been home to history's best musicians, artists, politicians, scientists, and controversial figures.

Vienna is also one of Europe's most beautiful cities, with a high quality of life evident in the sights and behavior of the locals. Stroll the narrow streets or saunter down the massive boulevards lined with antiquated buildings of all sizes and manicured lawns to perfection. The authentic atmosphere still rings with the presence of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Sigmund Freud. Visit the Schönbrunn Palace and the Hofburg Palace, and enjoy relaxation in nature at the tranquil city's gardens. Try pastries by day, and while the Viennese retire early in the night, many bars and wine taverns stay open for night owls and tourists.

11. Berlin, Germany - 5,770,900

Aerial view of Berlin skyline and Spree river in beautiful evening light at sunset in summer, Germany
Berlin, Germany.

"The capital of cool" boasts something you too will find cool, like the most accepting nightlife in Europe with pulsating bars and trendy clubs. Find your dose of cool in the many refreshing green parks or, if you are a history buff, at legendary landmarks. Visit the many museums, the momentous Berlin Wall, and the Holocaust Memorial that capture the city's evolution with each decade since then.

The city once called "poor but sexy," expanded rapidly with new buildings and became more multicultural. Experience the all-inclusive cultural scene and the culinary specter that caters to everyone. Berlin increased its prices but remains one of the cheaper major European cities, worth experiencing. Berlin boasts the hottest nightlife and clubbing scenes and embraces all interests. with a ton of other cultural activities.

12. Madrid, Spain - 5,512,600

The famous Cibeles fountain in Madrid, Spain
Madrid, Spain.

This big tourist destination has an infectious energy and a very green landscape overflowing with beautiful parks. Visit the impressive Baroque-style Palacio Real, the former home to the Spanish royal family. Stop by the place Puerta del Sol, the Gate of the Sun, with the statue of the city's coat of arms. Visit the most famous Retiro Park, the largest in Madrid, and immerse yourself in culture on a stroll along the streetscape to discover the best and most unusual sides of this city.

Stop by important art museums like the Prado, the Museo Reina Sophia, and the National Archaeological Museum. Madrid, the capital of Spain and the seat of the royal family, is one of the most influential European cities with a unique Hispanic flair. The lively city is affordable for Western Europeans to experience its outstanding culture through architecture, art, and inclusive nightlife. The city overflowing with energy is where modernity meets old-world charm in an intoxicating dance.

13. Venice, Italy - 5,406,800

Bridge Rialto on Grand canal famous landmark panoramic view Venice Italy with blue sky white cloud and gondola boat water.
Bridge Rialto on Grand canal, Venice, Italy.

While Paris may be the city of love, Venice shines with romance from every pore. It is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, with miles of canals and gondolas as the primary mode of transportation and a long and storied history. Venice was first founded in the 5th century as a refuge area for those displaced by the Barbarian invasions. By the 10th century, the city was a powerful and influential center for trade and commerce, and by the 12th century, Venice had become one of the most powerful cities in Europe.

To this day, Venice plays a significant role in European politics and culture and thrives through aesthetic beauty. The popular weekend getaway to Europe is most lively by day and empties at night when most of what the locals do is go for a romantic gondola ride or an evening dinner at a canal-front restaurant. The other side of Venice is that it is sinking in tourism and, literally, under the weight of the ocean from climate change. Take a Vaporetto boat, a public transport controlled by a boatman, and sightsee the Piazza St. Mark, the St. Mark Basilica, and Doge's Palace before it is too late.

14. Moscow, Russia - 5,404,500

St. Basil's Cathedral on Red Square in Moscow and the morning autumn sun
St. Basil's Cathedral, Moscow.

The highly controversial capital of Russia offers the perfect destination with a lot to offer off the beaten tourism path. The sixth-most futuristic European city is layered with history. The St. Basil’s Cathedral, of various colors, shapes, and geometric patterns, was designed to resemble the shape of a full-flame bonfire through nine chapels connected by a winding labyrinth of corridors and stairways. It houses art and artifacts like beautiful murals, frescoes, and wooden icons, and a silver casket bearing the body of St. Basil the Blessed on the lower floor. Napoleon and Stalin both wanted to destroy this impressive cathedral, but the castle continues to delight with fairy-tale spires. No visit to Moscow is complete without witnessing this distinctive symbol of Russia.

Lenin’s Mausoleum and the Kremlin are also along the Red Square, drenched in history amid the impressive heart of Moscow. Sightsee Tsar Cannon, the world's largest bombard, the Tsar Bell, the largest bell in the world, and the Kremlin Armory, one of Moscow’s oldest museums with an impressive diamond collection. Under Ivan the Great, the Kremlin became the center of a unified Russian state. Visit the Bolshoi Theatre, the main theater in the country, with amazing opera and ballet performances going on for centuries of Russia’s rich history of performing arts. The Bolshoi Ballet Company, established in 1776, with the theatre opening in 1825, is a glittering destination for the elite. It hosts world-class performances of classics like The Nutcracker and Swan Lake in its lavishly and decadently decorated six-tier auditorium.

15. Dublin, Ireland - 5,185,000

Night view of famous illuminated Ha Penny Bridge in Dublin, Ireland at sunset
Ha Penny Bridge in Dublin, Ireland.

The Irish capital, with its very interesting culture, sneaks in last on the list of Europe's fifteen most visited cities. Dublin is accessible from nearly any airport in Europe for super cheap, if without luggage or services. Enjoy a weekend escape via low-price airlines, like Ryanair, headquartered here. You can also easily connect in London when flying from the Americas. Visit Dublin whether you are a pubster, artsier, historian, churchgoer, or nature explorer.

Set base and explore the beautiful nature around the island of Ireland, while the small city capital is home to Phoenix, Europe’s largest city park. Dublin has a charming effect on tourists, where you may start drinking profusely or searching for a three-leafer. It is home to friendly locals, and you will love the younger vibe, thanks to a large student population. Revel in the excellent pub culture and the nightlife. The fairly small city is manageable on foot but has an array of food and alcohol that will take up most of your time.

Each of these countries is popular for a different reason. From business-oriented London to romantic cities like Paris and Venice to Spain's beaches, you will have unique culture and tons of architecture to discover while enjoying the atmosphere. Visit the younger destinations of Amsterdam and Prague or other places for cheaper prices to experience sights, attractions, services, and amenities.

Get a glimpse of Europe or indulge in a love affair on a Eurotrip, and you will leave deeply impressed by sights, hyped by experiences, and with centuries of history in your pocket. If you are visiting in the summer and seeking lesser crowds, visit the Scandinavian countries during the summer, like Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. These nonetheless beautiful northern European countries have just as much to see while enjoying pleasant weather.

The Most Visited Cities In Europe

Rank City Country Visitors in 2022*
1 London United Kingdom 20,715,900
2 Paris France 16,863,500
3 Istanbul Turkey 12,121,100
4 Antalya Turkey 10,729,300
5 Rome Italy 9,703,200
6 Prague Czech Republic 9,038,900
7 Amsterdam Netherlands 8,476,600
8 Barcelona Spain 6,726,000
9 Milan Italy 6,513,000
10 Vienna Austria 6,303,800
11 Berlin Germany 5,770,900
12 Madrid Spain 5,512,600
13 Venice Italy 5,406,800
14 Moscow Russia 5,404,500
15 Dublin Ireland 5,185,000
16 Athens Greece 5,133,200
17 Florence Italy 5,015,400
18 Munich Germany 4,036,700
19 Budapest Hungary 4,004,400
20 St. Petersburg Russia 3,996,000
21 Lisbon Portugal 3,790,500
22 Heraklion Greece 3,399,600
23 Brussels Belgium 3,074,100
24 Copenhagen Denmark 3,037,100
25 Krakow Poland 2,937,200

*Source: Euromonitor

  1. Home
  2. Places
  3. Cities
  4. The 15 Most Visited Cities n Europe

More in Places