Whether you think Europe is a friendly place to be is all a matter of opinion, but one thing that no one can deny is that it does have some of the most welcoming cities in the world. While the friendliness of a city is pretty hard to gauge, there are some that have a generally friendly atmosphere that most are naturally drawn to. Where are they, you ask? Well, that’s what we’re exploring here. So, get your EHIC renewal underway, get packing and put on your warmest smile – here are five of the friendliest cities in Europe for your weekend away.
It won’t be a surprise to many that a Swedish city has made its way onto the list, but for some, the true friendliness of Stockholm is a mystery they’re about to have solved. With an incredible level of social awareness that can reassure people from a multitude of denominations that they’ll be welcomed with open arms and an eco-friendly attitude that makes it not only people-friendly, but environmentally friendly too. While you’re there, take a visit to Skansen, an open-air museum and zoo to keep the whole family entertained, and spent a day exploring some of the stunning sights including Gamla Stan and Stockholm Palace.
Maybe it’s the infectious accept, but Dublin gives off quite the friendly aura when you visit! From Temple Bar to the very outskirts, you’re likely to be welcomed with open arms by most, especially if you stop by one of the cosy, traditional pubs and bars around the city – namely in the aforementioned Temple Bar. You can explore the incredible history of the city including the likes of Kilmainham Gaol or the eerie Famine Memorial located at Custom House Quay in the Dublin Docklands. Alternatively, you could stop for a bit of shopping on one of the many shopping streets or take a stroll around one of the countless tranquil parks for a nice break from the bustle of the city.
Portugal as a whole is pretty welcoming and friendly, but Porto in particular is well worth a visit. If you want the atmosphere of a capital city, Lisbon is a great alternative, but Porto holds a charm above the capital and is often much less crowded! With a vibrant social scene come day or night and a general welcoming atmosphere from the majority of the residents, this warm, beautiful location is worthy of much more than just a weekend break. However, with limited time, make sure that you take a stroll across the Dom Luis I Bridge, and visit the São Francisco Church and São Bento railway station for a taste of everything the city has to offer.
If you want a city that’ll open its arms to absolutely anyone, then Berlin is the one for you. Not only is it completely steeped in history, but it’s also one of the most diverse cities in the world with a multitude of cultures, nationalities, sexualities and more all mingling together into a friendly capital city. Make sure to take a walk along the remains of the Berlin Wall for a look at some incredible artwork and a taste of the history the city has grown form, before stopping by the Third Wave café for an amazing coffee and the chance to relax!
Milan is another city that will open its arms to absolutely anyone. With a very tourist-friendly attitude and a great social scene that makes meeting new people much easier than in any other city. What’s more, Milan is a stunning destination to enjoy, though fitting it all into a weekend could take some careful planning! If anything, make sure that you see Milan Cathedral, a stunning show of Italian architecture that’s taken over 600 years to complete! You can also stop by Sforza Castle for a glimpse at Medieval living, and the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II for a spot of high-end shopping.