9 rarest and most exotic destinations in Europe

These hidden places are ideal for escaping from everyday life and venturing into the unknown. What you need to know about each site

When planning a trip to Europe, most people decide to enjoy iconic cities such as Paris, Rome, Madrid, or Belgium. But throughout the old continent, there are corners full of nature, history, and curiosities to discover.

Instead of sticking to traditional tourist sites, an adventure in the heart of European countries could be very fruitful. These places are ideal for living new experiences and discovering destinations that few people have heard about.

9 most exotic destinations in Europe

This list contains the 9 most exotic destinations in Europe to visit on your next vacation.

1. Timanfaya National Park, Spain

This impressive volcanic landscape is located on the island of Lanzarote, a region belonging to the Canary Islands. Many of the 25 volcanoes in the national park are inactive, and others have low levels of activity. Even so, throughout the area you can feel the heat emanating from the ground and, sometimes, the locals use it for cooking.

Some people describe the experience of being surrounded by these geological structures as a trip to the planet Mars. This is due not only to its large number of volcanoes, similar to the Tharsis region on the red planet but also to the reddish color of the terrain that surrounds them.

In the national park, they offer visits led by guides who provide interesting data about this area densely populated with volcanoes, and show other interesting geological phenomena such as a geyser that expels columns of water.

2. Zell am See, Austria

The small town of Zell am See has less than 10,000 inhabitants and is ideal to visit in summer. Although its most popular time is winter due to the freezing of its lake, Zell, which allows skating on it, when temperatures rise it becomes the perfect place to enjoy the tranquility it offers.

Its landscape is decorated by some of the Alps mountains belonging to the Hohe National Park, the most important in Austria. Because of this, you can choose to enjoy serene walks through the town, or venture on excursions to the heights of the country’s highest mountain at more than 3,700 meters above sea level, Grossglockner.

3. Armenia

Armenia is undoubtedly a country rich in history and culture. Its roots come from the time of the Soviet Union, and the territory went through several wars that marked its population forever. Its area of ​​29.7 square kilometers barely exceeds that of the Spanish region of Galicia. It is full of historical stories and unparalleled nature.

Tourists who have visited highlight the warmth and good welcome from its inhabitants, who number just over 3 million. The importance of religion in the country can be seen through the number of monasteries, some located in distant regions over the mountains. Additionally, there are old structures like castles that blend in and stand out among the newly developing cities.

4. Nördlingen, Germany

The crater resulting from a meteorite impact millions of years ago provided the former imperial city of Nördlingen with the perfect place to settle. Its medieval essence was maintained over the years due to its construction and its wall, which was built around the geographic depression caused by the asteroid.

It is small and has about 20,000 inhabitants. Everything there is to know is within reach and just a walk is enough to get from one place to another. Some of its structures were built with rocks that contain tiny diamonds, a product of the meteorite impact.

Its history and culture can not only be seen in the architectural style, but also through all its squares and businesses. In addition, there is the Church of San Jorge, which has a 90-meter tower, visible from all parts of the city.

5. Eryri National Park, Wales

Celtic traditions are present in this stunning national park. Its high, rocky mountains are surrounded by extensive forests with a great variety of tree species, but they lack vegetation at the highest points. One of the most interesting is Craig yr Aderyn, which at 258 meters high is completely isolated from the rest.

The activities offered vary from hiking to zip line trips at heights exceeding 120 meters above the ground. This means that the landscape of Eryri Park can be appreciated from all possible angles.

The country’s highest mountain, 1085 meters high Snowdon, is also within this park and is accompanied by the large natural lake Llyn Tegid.

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6. Triglav National Park, Slovenia

This national park is the only one in all of Slovenia. It has a wide natural wealth made up of mountains belonging to the Alps, rivers, forests, canyons, and meadows. In addition, there are beautiful towns in the area of ​​838 square kilometers that it occupies, which represents a significant percentage of the land of the small country.

The highest mountain in the region is Triglav, the reason for the name of the park. It is 2,864 meters high and can be climbed. Slovak legends believe that a god lives at its peak.

Its marked trails allow safe excursions to admire everything the park has to offer, whether on foot or by bicycle.

7. Giant’s Causeway, Ireland

The volcanic explosions in northern Ireland millions of years ago resulted in stunning natural scenery. The lava cooled rapidly with ocean water and formed more than 40,000 basalt columns that appear to be a staircase that was carved by a giant.

This is the Irish legend that explains the creation of these unique pillars. The story tells how a giant built this cobbled path to confront another who had challenged him to a duel.

Due to its Nordic location and its access to the sea, it is not recommended to go in winter, since low temperatures and wind make it difficult to visit the causeway.

8. Reykjavík, Iceland

This city is the capital of Iceland and has the privilege of being an urban center without harming its surrounding landscape. A visit to this quiet city also allows you to enjoy its snowy contours, lakes, and high mountains.

Its highlights are its culture and gastronomy, both accessible through contact with locals and deep knowledge of the city.

In summer, due to its location, the sun is in the sky almost permanently. This change also produces a modification in the behavior of the entire region, in how they move, and in the amount of activity that can be observed on the streets. It is one of the places where the renowned phenomenon, “midnight sun” occurs.

9. Garajonay National Park, Spain

The magic of this forest is a direct product of its abundant and peculiar vegetation. The laurel forest covers the entire terrain and its trees delight with trunks full of vines. Its existence represents one of the last subtropical forests on the continent, which millions of years ago used to be abundant. It is home to more than 2,000 species of fauna and flora, some endemic.

This extensive protected area comprises almost 10% of the territory of the island of La Gomera, belonging to the Canary Islands. Its entry is free and its trails mark the ideal path to contemplate nature without disturbing it.

Mehran Khan

Mehran Khan is a tech enthusiast who also has a great passion in writing. During his 8 years of career, he has covered news, features, and evergreen content on multiple platforms. Apart from keeping a close eye on emerging tech developments, he likes wasting time at the gym.