With its plethora of cultures to experience, its compact size, and its efficient transportation network that includes international trains, highways, and flights, few places make it easier—or more enticing—for travelers to explore multiple countries in one fell swoop than Europe.
Not sure how to plan a multi-country trip? No worries; the best way to see multiple countries in Europe might just be by joining a group tour. Expert and experienced tour guides can handle every last logistic required to get you from place to place—and help you get acquainted with the customs of each country along the way. Sound exciting? (We thought so.) Here are six multi-country trips to consider.
1. Italy & Greece
Ancient history, awe-inspiring architecture, and stunning natural scenery make Italy and Greece one of the best multi-country trips on the map. In Rome, imagine the sound of roaring crowds inside the Colosseum as you stroll through its stands. In Athens, picture ancient Greeks paying homage to their patroness, the goddess Athena, while exploring the Parthenon they erected in her honor. In addition to getting a history fix, visitors to Italy and Greece can feast on traditional Mediterranean foods (pasta, baklava, and moussaka—oh, my!), visit local wineries, and relax on some of the planet’s most breathtaking beaches in Greece.
2. England & France
Together, these two countries—and their cosmopolitan capitals, London and Paris—make up one of the best multi-country trips for travelers who crave modern fashion, food, art, and culture. (Okay—and thrilling history, too.) In the English capital, travelers can visit icons like Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace, explore exquisite shops along Oxford Street, watch shows in the West End, and sip smooth, frothy stouts at some of London’s best pubs. Across the English Channel in Paris, treasures like the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower—not to mention countless chic cafes and brasseries—await. Don’t leave without taking an evening cruise along the Seine, or wandering through the impeccably manicured gardens of Versailles.
3. Portugal & Spain
These neighboring nations on Europe’s Iberian Peninsula make for one of the best multi-country trips for travelers who love people-watching in sunny plazas, eating their fill (and then some) of succulent seafood, and lingering over bottles of bright, crisp wine late into the night. They can do all that on our Grand Tour of Portugal & Spain: Porto to Barcelona. Highlights include viewing the terraced hills and historic buildings of Porto from aboard a Douro River cruise, tasting your way through Lisbon’s Time Out Market (grab a few extra pastéis de nata to go), touring a Spanish cork factory in Seville, visiting an olive oil farm in Granada—and so much more.
4. Scotland & Ireland
One of the top multi-country trips for anyone who loves literature, music, tales of life in the Middle Ages, and bucolic coastal landscapes is a two-in-one visit to Scotland and Ireland. (And did we mention all that Scotch whisky?) Travelers on our Highlights of Scotland & Ireland: Edinburgh to Dublin tour can follow in the footsteps of literary giants like Sir Walter Scott and Oscar Wilde, visit a Sottish museum to see medieval suits of armor up close, and, in Ireland, revel in the beauty of the otherworldly Burren and the soaring Cliffs of Moher.
5. Germany, Switzerland & Austria
When it comes to fairytale-caliber castles, wide-open mountain scenery, moody, Gothic architecture, and hearty, stick-to-your-ribs dishes—and let’s not forget the beer!—few multi-country trips deliver like a tour of Germany, Switzerland & Austria. Some unforgettable experiences that await travelers in this trio of European countries include riding a funicular to Heidelberg’s rose-colored castle for sweeping city views, cruising along the calm waters of Switzerland’s Lake Lucerne, and sitting down for a live performance of Mozart’s music in Salzburg.
6. Norway, Sweden, Finland & Denmark
If you ask us, visiting multiple countries in one trip is an ideal way to experience variations of the smart urban design, locally sourced cuisine, bold sartorial style, and wild natural beauty that make the nations of Scandinavia so alike, yet unique from one another. On our Scandinavia: The Capitals & the Fjords tour, travelers can cruise through Norway’s majestic fjords, marvel at Oslo’s modern art and architecture, sample new Nordic cuisine made famous by Danish chefs, and see inside Stockholm’s city hall, which plays host to the annual Nobel Prize banquet. Travelers are sure to return home from this far-flung corner of the world feeling inspired.