02 Europe’s 24 Most Affordable Travel Destinations

Every year we put together a list of Europe’s 24 most affordable travel destinations, to keep our readers informed and help them plan great European adventure. The travel industry has been rocked in the last two years, firstly by Covid-19 and more recently by the war between Russia and Ukraine.

Even though travel restrictions are slowly being eased globally following the pandemic, we are putting our readers’ safety first and therefore removing all Russian and Ukrainian cities due to the ongoing conflict. This gives opportunity to some new candidates for our list of the 24 Cheapest Cities in Europe.

Through our research, we are giving you rough daily costs estimate based on the following: * One-night accommodation in a well-located backpackers *One museum or other popular cultural attraction *Three beverages *Two family restaurant meals *Two 3km taxi rides, although using the public transport could generally be a much cheaper option.

Never been to Europe? Now is a time to start planning your first/next European getaway, enjoy!

S

Santorini, Greece – This active mega volcano not only offers arguably the best views and most incredible sunsets in the world but also tons of other activities such as archaeological sites, museums, hot springs, tours, traditional cuisine, and buzzing nightlife. This breath-taking island is an absolute MUST-SEE for all travellers, whether young, old, solo, or honeymooners. Do not let the fact that Santorini has made it onto our list of the ‘24 cheapest cities in Europe fool you. The island offers majority luxury hotels and restaurants targeting the rich and famous BUT does also cater to the budget traveller too. Estimated Daily Budget: US$96 / day (2022) vs US$72.53 / day (2020) and US$72 / day (2018).

Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.

A

Athens, Greece – The Acropolis of Athens not only offers immense history but also stunning views of the city. After exploring, there is no better way to spend the evening than to take a walk through the buzzing Plaka district and to enjoy a traditional meal at one of the tavernas. The city of Athens is also one of few in Greece that offers the Uber service which is a lot more cost-effective than your traditional meter taxis. Estimated Daily Budget: US$86 / day (2022) vs US$94.51 / day (2020) and US$80 / day (2018).

L

Lisbon, Portugal – The Portuguese capital not only offers immense history and culture but also picturesque views that will leave you breathless. There are many important museums, monuments, and medieval landmarks to be explored in the city. Estimated Daily Budget: US$85 / day (2022) vs US$102.20 /day (2020) and US$88 / day (2018).

N

Naples, Italy – Possibly Naples is the most diverse city in Italy, where you can experience cultures from almost every corner of the globe. The city offers several medieval castles and is an excellent base point for nearby day trips to places such as Mount Vesuvius, Pompeii, Amalfi coast, and the nearby islands of Procida and Capri. Estimated Daily Budget: US$84 / day (2022) vs US$114.84 /day (2020) and US$82 / day (2018).

B

Germany’s capital, Berlin, offers a bit of everything. From important historic and modern landmarks to art and an abundance of culture. Eisbein, sauerkraut and German beer are a must when you visit Berlin. Estimated Daily Budget: US$80 / day (2022).NEW in the list.

T

Estonia’s capital, Tallinn, is a Baltic paradise with charming, cobbled streets and a buzzing old town. Be sure to visit Lennusadam, a museum that showcases a 1560s sunken ship, and enjoy a locally made ale at one of the many bars in the town centre. Estimated Daily Budget: US$68 / day (2022). NEW in the list.

S

Split, Croatia – This coastal city carries an authentic charm and offers much beauty. Whether you wish to explore the charming streets, relax at the white sandy beaches or enjoy the presence of the many locals and the buzzing nightlife, this city will surely have you coming back for more. Estimated Daily Budget: US$66 / day (2022) vs US$73.63 /day (2020) and US$72 / day (2018).

The gladdest moment in human life, methinks, is a departure into unknown lands.

T

Tenerife, Spain – The city is the largest of the Canary Islands and the home of Mount Teide, a volcano with a 3718-meter summit which makes it the highest peak in Spain. The island offers beautiful hikes and other nature excursions, or one could simply soak up the sun at Siam Water Park or at one of the beaches. Estimated Daily Budget: US$66 / day (2022) vs US$76.92 / day (2020) and US$74 / day (2018).

V

Valletta, Malta – As you stroll through the charming streets of Valletta be sure to take note of the balconies which hang from the buildings beside you. The city also offers many museums and great beaches, and the nearby St. Julians offers value for money accommodation. Estimated Daily Budget: US$65 / day (2022) vs US$114.84 /day (2020) and US$82 / day (2018).

B

Bratislava, Slovakia – A city rich with historic landmarks, museums, and medieval architecture. Bratislava also finds itself conveniently near the Austrian and Hungarian borders which makes a great pit stop during your European escapade. Estimated Daily Budget: US$64 / day (2022) vs US$76.15 / day (2020) and US$70 / day (2018).

L

Ljubljana, unlike most European capitals, boasts lush landscapes. The Ljubljana River divides the city’s old town from its commercial hub. Along the river, you can enjoy outdoor cafes and breath-taking views. Slovenia’s capital also makes an excellent base-point for nearby daytrips, such as Lake Bled and Kamniska Bistrica River Valley. Estimated Daily Budget: US$64 / day (2022). NEW in the list.

P

Prague, Czech Republic – The picturesque capital of the Czech Republic, split by the Vltava River, offers a vast amount of gothic style architecture along with immense history and breath-taking views. Prague Orloj, a medieval astronomical clock was first installed in 1410 and is the third-known-oldest astronomical clock in the world and the oldest clock still running. Estimated Daily Budget: US$64 / day (2022) vs US$94.04 / day (2020) and US$66 / day (2018).

R

Riga, Latvia – The city of Riga is known for its wooden buildings, art nouveau architecture, and medieval Old Town. The pedestrian-only Old Town has many shops and restaurants and is home to busy Livu Square, with bars and nightclubs. Estimated Daily Budget: US$63 /day (2022) vs US$74.04 /day (2020) and US$62 / day (2018).

No place is ever as cheap as they tell you it’s going to be.

V

Vilnius, Lithuania – The Lithuanian capital is best known among tourists for its charming Old Town, and the city offers diverse styles of architecture in the form of cathedrals, churches, and historic monuments among other buildings. Estimated Daily Budget: US$62 / day (2022) vs US$65.27 / day (2020) and US$66 / day (2018).

B

Bucharest offers many architectural landmarks in the form of government buildings, churches, cathedrals, monasteries, and monuments. The Romanian capital also offers several stunning parks and gardens for those in search of a more relaxed atmosphere. Estimated Daily Budget: US$61 / day (2022) vs US$45.39 / day (2020) and US$43 / day (2018).

Z

Zagreb, Croatia – Yet another Croatian city offering its charm, history, and architectural beauty to its visitors from around the globe. Zagreb is more than 1000 years old and is the capital, as well as the largest city in Croatian. Estimated Daily Budget: US$56 / day (2022) vs US$67.41 / day (2020) and US$60 / day (2018).

S

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina – Sarajevo is located on the Miljacka River and surrounded by the Dinaric Alps. The city offers a vast number of parks, waterfalls, and hiking trails, and is an excellent base point for nearby day trip getaways. Estimated Daily Budget: US$50 / day (2022) vs US$58.24 / day (2020) and US$56 / day (2018).

I

Istanbul, Turkey – A diverse city offering a vast number of mosques, churches, and palaces. Constantinople was the capital city of the Roman Empire, the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire, The Latin Empire, and the Ottoman Empire. Travellers can also experience some of the country’s best markets in this city. Estimated Daily Budget: US$48 / day (2022) vs US$56.90 / day (2020) and US$49 / day (2018).

C

Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic – This small, picturesque city not only offers incredible views, a relaxed atmosphere, and beautiful architecture but also a vast number of historic and UNESCO world heritage sites. Estimated Daily Budget: US$47 / day (2022) vs US$67.72 / day (2020) and US$50 / day (2018).

The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.

B

Belgrade, Serbia – The church of Saint Sava and Belgrade Fortress is among the most popular must-see landmarks of the city. Belgrade also offers a busy nightlife and great museums, including the Nikola Tesla Museum. The Avala Mountain offers stunning panoramic views of the city. Estimated Daily Budget: US$45 / day (2022) vs US$56.04 / day (2020) and US$49 / day (2018).

S

Sofia, Bulgaria – A city rich in culture and history, and with a busy nightlife. The newly discovered ancient town of Serdika dug out from beneath Sofia’s city centre, is free for the public to view. The city also offers a vast amount of old churches, cathedrals, and some important museums including the National Historical Museum which is also the home of the famous gold Panagyurishte Treasure. Nature lovers can enjoy a hike up to Cherni Vrah, the peak of Vitosha Mountain which overlooks the city. Estimated Daily Budget: US$44 / day (2022) vs US$57.25 / day (2020) and US$46 / day (2018).

K

Krakow, Poland – An architectural paradise with a vast number of medieval castles and other historic landmarks. Krakow also offers stunning natural beauty in the form of gardens and parks. The city finds itself conveniently close to the Czech Republic and Slovakia, for those travellers who have Poland’s southern neighbours on their bucket lists. Estimated Daily Budget: US$44 / day (2022) vs US$57.25 / day (2020) and US$45 / day (2018).

B

Budapest, Hungary – This major European city is filled with old castles, fortresses, and UNESCO world heritage sites, among other famous landmarks. Take a walk through the quiet streets and soak up the cultural beauty or relax at Szechenyi Thermal Bath, the largest thermal bath in Europe. Estimated Daily Budget: US$43 / day (2022) vs US$56.50 / day (2020) and US$48 / day (2018).

W

Warsaw, Poland – Warsaw boasts several war museums, a Copernicus science centre, and Medieval palaces. Taste the famous Polish dumplings and the Polish vodka. Warsaw is bound to offer eclectic culture. A vibrant city throughout any time of year and a definite must-visit. Estimated Daily Budget: US$43 / day (2022) vs US$70.73 / day (2020) and US$68 / day (2018).

Thank you for reading and happy travels
Wanderlust Magazine contributor Mario’s YouTube Travel Channel
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