My 9 Favorite European Destinations of 2019 (& To Consider for 2020)

My favorite destinations of 2019 and some places to travel in 2020.

I traveled quite a bit in 2019 – I quit my job to become a digital nomad right at the beginning of the year, and thus was able to see a lot more than I did in 2018. Hence why I don’t really have a “favorite destinations of 2018” because I didn’t travel nearly as much!

If you’re curious about 2017, though, I gotchu – here’s a list of my favorite destinations from 2017.

And so, here are my favorite destinations from 2019 and ones you might want to think about for 2020!

BANSKO, BULGARIA

Bansko, Bulgaria is one of my favorite destinations of 2019, and a great place to think about visiting in 2020!
[Bansko rooftops on a cloudy day]
I’m surprised by how much I’ve fallen in love with Bansko! It’s got pretty much everything I love – cobblestone streets, delicious food, lots of nature nearby and mountain views, a weekly market, and it’s small and walkable!

Oh, and of course there’s the coworking space that has created an amazing digital nomad community!

Bansko, Bulgaria at sunset. Bansko is a great adventure destination with mountains and nature, and a great place to visit in 2020!
[The sunsets here are soooo beautiful!]
I’m already making plans to come back in the fall…

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MÜRREN, SWITZERLAND

Mürren, Switzerland is a ski town in the Swiss Alps. This Swiss Alps town was one of my favorite destinations of 2019, and a great place to travel in 2020.
[Mürren was the Swiss Alps town of my dreams]
This was suggested by our AirBnb hosts in Basel. We’d originally planned to go to Interlaken but they told us to skip it and go here instead – and they were SO right!

Mürren, Switzerland gets lots of snow in the winter, and has ski chalets among the Alps. It was one of my favorite destinations of 2019 and is a great place to travel in winter 2020!
[Those chalets though! We only went for a day trip, but I can’t even imagine how expensive it would be to stay overnight!]
Mürren was the perfect small ski town of my dreams, surrounded by jagged mountain peaks topped with an abundance of snow. We even saw people heli-skiing while eating our Röstis which was very entertaining!

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HAMBURG, GERMANY

Hamburg, Germany from the tower at St. Michael's Church, or Michel. Hamburg is an excellent destination to travel to in 2020!
[Hamburg from the tower at St. Michael’s Church – one of the best views in the city, in my opinion!]
It’s no secret that Hamburg is one of my favorite cities – I’ve written about it multiple times…

I’m not really a city person, but if I had to pick one, Hamburg would definitely be up there. It’s really pretty, has a ton of parks, the public transportation is amazing and it’s easily bikeable…I could go on and on!

Hamburg Christmas Markets
[Why are the Christmas Markets just the best]
And of course – CHRISTMAS MARKETS. OMG the Christmas Markets!!! I am still shook that I FINALLY was able to go to some after dreaming about them for years. You think I’m being dramatic, but I’m really not.

I just can’t go back to the “Christmas in the Park” (anyone from San Jose, California?) display in my hometown again after attending the real deal in Europe.

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BERGEN, NORWAY

View from a fjord cruise in Norway from Bergen to Mostraumen. This was one of my favorite experiences of 2019, and a fjord cruise is one of the best travel experiences of 2020!
[Like IS THIS REAL?! I’m still not convinced]
The views from the mountains in Bergen (Ulriken and Fløyen) are stunning! But my favorite thing we did while we were there had to be the fjord cruise. Honestly, if it wasn’t for that, Bergen probably wouldn’t be on here – but the cruise itself was just so breathtaking.

View of Bergen, Norway from the Fløyen hiking trail.
[The view of Bergen from the hiking trail to Fløyen! I loved that it was so easy to get into nature in Bergen.] 
Bryggen, Hanseatic heritage commercial buildings in Bergen, Norway. Bergen is a great destination to visit in 2020.
[Bryggen is made up of multiple Hanseatic heritage commercial buildings and a UNESCO World Heritage site.]
An old water mill next to a stream in Bergen, Norway.
[This old water mill was right near our AirBnb and was so pretty]
I was so close to not going, too. My budget happy self wasn’t sure if it would really be worth it. But oh, it was. It really was.

View from a fjord cruise in Norway from Bergen to Mostraumen. This was one of my favorite experiences of 2019, and a fjord cruise is one of the best travel experiences of 2020!
[Dying to go on another fjord cruise because THIS]
Like, I’m still wondering if the scenery was real…We even got to drink water from a waterfall. Like our boat floated near the falls, our guide dipped the bucket in it, and then we all drank it. And this is real life.

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COLMAR, FRANCE

Colmar, France was one of my favorite destinations in 2019 and a great place to go in 2020!
[Colmar is so pretty!]
I’d wanted to go here since FOREVER and it was pretty much EXACTLY what I’d hoped it would be.

Colmar, France has beautiful canals and was one of my favorite destinations in 2019 and a great place to go in 2020!
[Staring at all the beauty that is Colmar]
I’d imagine it’s super crowded if you go on a weekend during high season which would probably make it a little less enjoyable, but we went on a weekday in February early in the morning and had it mostly to ourselves! So that’s my advice to you.

RIGI, SWITZERLAND

The view from Mount Rigi in Switzerland lets you be above the clouds. Rigi is a cool destination for 2020!
[Them clouds THO]
There was something about being on a super high mountain completely above the clouds that was soooo cool! Even though it was pretty touristy it was still so epic.

The view from Mount Rigi in Switzerland in the snow in winter. Rigi is a great destination to add to your travel list for 2020! Rigi in February.
[Like how epic is this]
Tram frozen over on Mount Rigi in Switzerland. Rigi is a great winter destination - this was in February!
[Frozen tram in Rigi, Switzerland]
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RHINE RIVER AREA, GERMANY

Cochem Castle in Germany in the fall! Cochem Castle is a great destination to visit in 2020, and one of my favorites from 2019.
[Cochem Castle just looks so damn epic]
Ugh, this was so beautiful! The castles. The river. The wine. THE WINE!!!!

We even met a guy at our hotel whose friend owned a castle. And then he invited us to see the castle the next day!!! And we had coffee and hung out with them for an hour!!!

Eltz Castle in Germany is a great place to go in 2020!
[Eltz Castle was so epic and beautiful]
Like I can’t make this shit up. I mean, I could, and you would never know if I was telling the truth or not – but I’ll let you decide 😉

Sterrenberg Castle on a hill in Germany along the Rhine River.
[The castle we visited is on the top of this hill! Maybe not the biggest castle ever, but still a castle nonetheless!]
But anyway – the wine festivals were so fun, too! We stumbled upon one on a rainy day and it was poppin’. And by poppin’ I mean the Federweißer! This is a cool drink that is basically teenage wine. Except unlike teenagers, it’s not stressful to be around, and in fact, quite the opposite!

I may or may not know from personal experience…

THE YORKSHIRE COAST

Red rooftops in Robin Hood's Bay in England. Robin Hood's Bay is a great destination to travel to in 2020!
[Love the red rooftops tho]
Colorful bright beach huts in Saltburn-by-the-Sea in England. The Yorkshire coast is one of my favorite places from 2019, and a great destination to travel to in 2020!
[Really wish I had rented one of these bad boys]
Ok, I feel like I’m kind of cheating with the past two – but the whole area is just so pretty!! Each town is similar yet still has its own ~vibe~.

But I suppose if you reallllly made me choose a favorite, I’d have to say Robin Hood’s Bay – I think the history is so cool! It was once a smuggler’s paradise back in the day, and although many other towns were, too, it’s the most well-known for it.

The main street going into Robin Hood's Bay, a great travel destination for 2020.
[The main street going into Robin Hood’s Bay is pretty much perfect]
There are lots of secret passageways and narrow alleys between the main streets, and it’s said that one could go from the coast to the to their final destination without ever seeing daylight!

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ALTES LAND

Picking apples at Herzapfelhof Lühs in Altes Land in Germany. Altes Land is a really cool destination for 2020!
[Picking apples at Herzapfelhof Lühs in Altes Land was so fun]
Ok, I honestly am just basic AF and love apple picking. Even though the actual apple picking process really isn’t that long, but idk, there’s just something about doing all the fall things that makes me happy?

Altes Land in Germany has beautiful old brick houses.
[Old German house in Altes Land]
And also all the old houses!!! I was in love.

I hope you enjoyed this list of my favorite destinations of 2019! Any that you’d want to visit in 2020? And out of curiosity, how many have you heard of?

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My favorite destinations of 2019 and some places to travel in 2020.

My favorite destinations of 2019 and some places to travel in 2020.

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2 thoughts on “My 9 Favorite European Destinations of 2019 (& To Consider for 2020)

    1. Yes, Bergen was really cool, although I mostly liked it for the fjord tour, haha. If I could do it over again, I would have loved to check out more of the Norwegian countryside!

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