Top 5 European Cities To Tour This Year

SANDEMANs' guide to walking your shoes off in Europe's top cities

Walking around a city is the perfect way to see its major attractions, but also discover hidden gems and get a better feeling of the place. Our partner SANDEMANs offer walking tours, pub crawls and experiences, both free and paid, in 17 cities which you can access with a Eurail/Interrail Pass. But which ones are the best to visit this year? SANDEMANs guide you through their Top 5, along with the attractions you shouldn't miss and the SANDEMANs tours which will take you to them.

London, England

While the UK capital often conjures up images of hustle and bustle, and business people rushing through the Tube to get to their high-rise offices, London is still truly one of the world’s best cities.

While you won’t want to miss the many postcard-perfect sites such as Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London, the Houses of Parliament and more (note that the famous Big Ben clock is under scaffolding until 2021), Londoners love their park culture... Take some time to walk through and explore Hyde Park, Regent’s Park and Holland Park (to name only a few), and you won’t be disappointed.

To make the most of your trip to London, you might consider starting with the famous tips-based SANDEMANs FREE Tour, leaving in English and Spanish several times a day from the iconic Covent Garden. The FREE Tour is a great way to see many of London’s major sites in an entertaining 2.5-hour walk, while deciding for yourself how much you want to pay at the end. As well as the FREE Tour, Eurail/Interrail Pass Holders also receive a 20% discount to some of SANDEMANs’ other excellent London tours, including the evening Grim Reaper Tour (following the footsteps of Jack the Ripper), the charming Harry Potter Tour, or for those staying a little longer, a wonderful day trip to Oxford.

Buckingham Palace and Victoria Memorial

Dublin, Ireland

The city of Dublin is a hub of history, folklore and hospitality – a perfect example of everything there is to love about the Emerald Isle and the Irish themselves.

While the River Liffey runs through the city, dividing it into the Northside and Southside (often discussed as such amongst the locals), both banks of the river are well worth exploring. On the Southside, you’ll love the impressive Dublin Castle and the famous Trinity College, and you might choose to take a stroll through St. Stephen’s Green before stopping off for a pint and some live music in Temple Bar. A quick hop over the Ha’Penny Bridge will bring you to the Northside, home to the Guinness Store House, the Spire, and for lovers of Irish literature, the magnificent Dublin Writers Museum.

For your introduction to Dublin we recommend the tip-based SANDEMANs FREE Tour, taking in many of the must-see sites listed above and giving a fantastic overview of Dublin’s tumultuous yet fascinating history. With your 20% discount on SANDEMANs tours, you might also enjoy getting to see the famous Dublin nightlife through the eyes of a local with SANDEMANs’ Pub Crawl, and for those staying a few days, we strongly recommend the stunning day trip to Howth to ensure you see the Republic of Ireland’s dramatic natural landscape, as well as its lively capital.

Dublin Castle from Dubh Linn gardens

Lisbon, Portugal

Sunshine, beautiful architecture, port wine and delicious pastries – what more could you want from a trip to Europe?

While you might want to go on a few training walks beforehand (the hills of Lisbon are famous for helping to craft well-sculpted legs), the easy-to-navigate tram system is on hand for those who’d rather not take on the hills under their own steam.

In Lisbon, the tips-based SANDEMANs FREE Tour is one of the city’s top-reviewed attractions. As well as providing a fascinating insight into Portugal’s history, it also takes in must-see sites such as Rossio Square, the waterfront at Praça de Comércio, and magnificent views over the city from the Santa Justa Elevator. However, Lisbon has a lot to offer, and Eurail/Interrail Pass Holders can also enjoy a 20% discount on the tour of the historic Alfama district, or on the half-day trip to the unmissable UNESCO World Heritage Site of Sintra.

Lisbon skyline view over Rossio Square

Munich, Germany

The beautiful southern German city of Munich is a must-see whirlwind of fairy tales, history, and of course, top-class beer. While the Christmas markets in the winter and the world-famous Oktoberfest in autumn are highlights on the Munich calendar, the city really shines the rest of the year as well.

Of course, Germany’s capital, Berlin, is a popular favorite amongst travelers, and is also well worth a visit, but many of the more traditional elements of German culture originate from the state of Bavaria, of which Munich is the capital. This includes the famous beer gardens and beer halls (including the Hofbräuhaus), charming German architecture, and some of the most impressive remains of former German royalty.

While the tips-based SANDEMANs FREE Tour will show you the major sites and guide you through Munich’s fascinating yet, at-times, dark history (from the drama of the Bavarian royal family to the rise and fall of Hitler and the Nazi party), you can experience some of the world’s best beer for yourself on the Beer Tasting Tour, before spending a day visiting the awe-inspiring Neuschwanstein, the incredible castle that inspired Walt Disney.

Neuschwanstein Castle, the 19th century Romanesque Revival palace built for King Ludwig II

Amsterdam, the Netherlands

The city of Amsterdam is beautiful at any time of the year, and its variety of events and attractions will make your stay truly unforgettable.

With easy train connections to so many other amazing European cities, Amsterdam is a popular stop for many Eurail/Interrail Pass Holders, and with its picturesque canals, lined with quintessentially Dutch houses, you’ll fall in love with Amsterdam too.

Once again, the fascinating story of the city comes to life on the tips-based SANDEMANs FREE Tour, leaving several times a day from Dam Square in the city center. Here as well Eurail Pass Holders receive a 20% discount on SANDEMANs paid tours, with favorites including the World War II and Jewish Quarter Tour, the popular open-top guided boat tour (including a complementary beer, wine or soft drink), and for those wanting to experience windmills, water locks and the Dutch rural landscape, the Countryside Bike Tour.

One of the many canals in Amsterdam