11 hidden travel destinations in Europe where you can escape the tourist crowds

I love the buzz I get when visiting popular bustling tourist destinations such as Barcelona, Copenhagen and London, although nothing quite beats escaping the crowds and exploring a hidden gem.  For our main family holiday this year we knew we wanted to visit a couple of hidden travel destinations in Europe.  We wanted to give our boys the chance to mix with the locals, try some authentic food and experience unique adventures.  Actually deciding where to go on holiday was a conversation that had been ongoing with my hubby and I for weeks!  (I blame too many travel ideas and just not enough annual leave, or money!)  

Just as I was beginning to think we would never agree on a destination, our travel plans started to fall into place after attending an Italian cookery workshop a few weeks ago.   The event was hosted by Bookings For You, a villa rental company who specialise in Italy and France.  The owner and mum of two, Jo, recommended Lake Maggiore in the Italian Lakes, where she has visited with her young family on many occasions.  She was so enthusiastic about the activities on offer for families in Lake Maggiore that I just had to check it out.

Hidden travel destinations in Europe Lake Maggiore

Stunning views of Lake Maggiore.  Copyright – Bookings For You.

It’s not an area I have ever considered for a family holiday before, however after reading about the lakeside beaches, swimming in rivers and exploring by boat, it didn’t take much to convince me to book this stunning villa with lake views!

With one part of our holiday sorted choosing the second hidden travel destination in Europe was easy.  We love France and have visited the Côte d’Azur on the south coast many times.  Looking for inspiration for a road trip in a different region of France I stumbled across this article by Nell at the Pigeon Pair and Me – Are the Glénan Islands the most beautiful in Europe?

This image of the Glénan Archipelago off the west coast of Finistère convinced me to book flights to tour around Brittany.  Thanks Pigeon Pair and Me!

Shortly after arranging our road trip around Brittany, and our flights to Milan to visit Lake Maggiore, an email popped in my inbox with this image confirming that we had made the right decision!
Hidden travel destinations in EuropeSource – Grand European Travel.

All 11 of these hidden travel destinations in Europe look amazing.  I’ll certainly make sure we visit the 17th century palace whilst staying in Lake Maggiore and I’m also hoping we can pop across to Mont Saint Michel in Normandy whilst on our road trip in Brittany.

I would love to know if you have visited any of the hidden gems above.  Also, if you have tips for making the most of Brittany and Lake Maggiore please do pop them in the comments section below.

Disclosure – Compiled in association with Grand European Travel, a travel retailer specializing in guided vacations and river cruises.  

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11 hidden travel destinations in Europe.

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6 thoughts on “11 hidden travel destinations in Europe where you can escape the tourist crowds

  1. Suzanne - Travelbunny

    Goreme in Turkey ifilled with cave hotels and hostels in an incredible volcanic landscape. We stayed in a fairy chimney for a night and took a dawn balloon flight with around 80 hot air balloons – one of my most memorable trips!

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