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Backpacking Europe: The Final Journey Information

There are few issues as thrilling as embarking on a backpacking journey by way of Europe. The push of pleasure as you step off the airplane or prepare in a brand new nation is an unbelievable feeling.

As a traveller who spent eight months backpacking round Europe, it’s a sense I do know fairly nicely. Beginning in London, I spent the higher a part of a 12 months climbing by way of snowy Sweden, devouring pasta in Italy, making new hostel associates in Budapest, and dancing the evening away in Spain.

This Europe backpacking journey was presumably the perfect expertise of my life — it’s one thing I’d wholeheartedly suggest to anybody sooner or later.

If you happen to’ve ever contemplated spending just a few weeks or months in Europe, then this text is for you. I’ll focus on the perfect itineraries in Japanese and Western Europe, what to anticipate by way of security, and how one can get off the overwhelmed path to see among the world’s most unbelievable sights.

Highlights of Travel in Europe

*Notice: Control this. Apparently, as of 2024, residents from the USA, Canada, Australia (and different international locations) who didn’t want to use for something with a view to go backpacking within the Schengen visa international locations of Europe, will quickly want to use for an ETIAS (European Journey Info and Authorization System) visa waiver. Additionally, some international locations that wanted to use for a Schengen Visa previously might now solely must receive an ETIAS waiver. Be taught extra concerning the ETIAS necessities right here.

Finest Time To Go Backpacking in Europe

If you happen to’re planning on backpacking by way of Europe, you’ll first must determine what time of the 12 months to go. It will rely upon a number of elements, together with your price range and what international locations you propose on visiting.

mountain lake in the tatras of slovakia

Relying on the actions you need to do, I feel early fall and late spring are the perfect instances to go to Europe. Relying on the place you’re going, the climate will most likely be extra bearable than summer season or winter.

As a result of faculty vacation schedule, summer season is taken into account the height season in Europe. The climate is heat, the solar units later, and the streets are stuffed with households, tour teams, and travellers generally.

If you happen to plan on backpacking Europe in June, July, or August, you can even anticipate that costs for inns and flights shall be a lot increased. It’s not unusual to spend two or 3 times greater than you’d if you happen to went through the low season.

Talking of the low season, the least busy time to journey is from late fall to winter. Though some folks take further time through the Christmas holidays, Europe is usually the most cost effective throughout these months.

You may assume that the chilly temperatures and brief days make backpacking more durable, however with out all of the vacationers, you’ll get to expertise a wholly completely different aspect of Europe.

Throughout my backpacking journey, I made a decision to fly to Stockholm, Sweden for a number of days in the course of January. Due to the freezing temperatures and harsh snowfall, a variety of my associates thought I used to be loopy! Nevertheless, my hostel was tremendous low cost, and I by no means needed to combat by way of crowds or wait in line for eating places. To not point out, I felt like I had town all to myself.

The reality is, there’s actually no improper time to go backpacking in Europe. There are benefits and downsides to every season, so that you’ll simply must determine which period is best for you.

backpacking europe italy

Find out how to Get Round Whereas Backpacking Europe

It ought to come as no shock that components of Europe are recognized for his or her quick and environment friendly transportation system. Whereas some international locations make it straightforward to get round when backpacking Europe, different locations is perhaps harder. When planning your itinerary, it is best to take the next strategies of transportation into consideration.


Zipping from nation to nation by high-speed prepare is a quintessential European backpacking expertise. They’re quick, often on time, and customarily inexpensive in comparison with some flights and automobile leases. In some international locations, trains even have free wifi and eating automobiles.

Today, as a result of price range airways, the prepare is extra of an expertise and a cushty journey than an inexpensive manner of getting round.


Taking a bus by way of Europe could also be time-consuming, nevertheless it’s one of many most cost-effective methods of backpacking Europe. FlixBus and BlaBlaBus are two respected corporations working in Western Europe. Yow will discover tickets for as little as €5 every manner — nonetheless, most journeys value between €20 – €40.  


If you happen to’re brief on time or going lengthy distances, flying is perhaps the best choice. Though you’ll want to permit time for check-in and safety, it’s typically a lot sooner than driving or taking the bus. You’ll additionally rating good offers on tickets by reserving with a low-cost airline equivalent to RyanAir, EasyJet or WizzAir. 


Renting a automobile is a superb choice if you wish to discover completely different cities and cities at your personal tempo. You’ll even have the possibility to go to locations which are extra distant or not linked by prepare. Nevertheless, leases are typically dearer. And relying on the place you’re travelling, you may want a global driving license and the inexperienced mild from the rental firm to cross borders. 


For the last word backpacking expertise, think about renting a campervan to journey by way of Europe. Not solely will you get monetary savings on inns, however you’ll additionally be capable to get off the overwhelmed path to among the continent’s most hidden locations! 

Backpacking Western Europe

As some of the iconic backpacking locations, Western Europe has all of it. It boasts the glitzy cities and larger-than-life historic monuments that most individuals envision after they consider Europe. There’s at all times a brand new metropolis to discover and new cultures to expertise, whether or not it’s your first, second, or one-hundredth time on the continent.

Nevertheless, it might be onerous to determine which locations to go to throughout your Western Europe journey. So, I put collectively this checklist of my high international locations for backpackers.

Backpacking Italy

Overflowing with historical past and tradition, Italy is a traditional cease on any Western European itinerary. Whether or not you’re marvelling on the ruins in Rome, the unbelievable structure in Matera, or wine tasting in Tuscany, Italy is assured to have one thing that sparks your curiosity.

Greater touristy cities are inclined to value far more than the outskirts. Luckily, a few of Italy’s most lovely settings are the place you least look forward to finding them.

  • Price range: €50-€70/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €20-€40
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €60-€70
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €10
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €4
  • Price of Transport by prepare: €1.50 a technique
backpacking europe

Backpacking Germany

Many individuals journey to Germany for Oktoberfest, Carnival, or just to spend time within the nice open air. Berlin, Munich, and Hamburg are superb for many who need to expertise metropolis life.

Then again, there are many cute and charming medieval villages and castles to discover right here too. Better of all, Germany’s environment friendly prepare system makes backpacking by way of the nation a breeze!

  • Price range: €90-€100/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €30-€50
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €70-€80
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €10
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €3
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €2.50 a technique

Backpacking France

Though it might be some of the costly international locations on this checklist, France remains to be a must-see vacation spot when backpacking by way of Europe. You possibly can buy groceries in Paris, take cooking lessons in Provence, or calm down on the coast in Good.

To not point out, the meals is out of this world! Its central location additionally makes it superb for travelling between different international locations round Western Europe.

  • Price range: €100-€120/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €30-€50
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €90-€100
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €12
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €5
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €2 a technique

Backpacking Spain

The laidback environment of Spain makes it one of many coolest locations to go to in Western Europe. Huge cities like Barcelona and Madrid are stuffed with museums, parks, and wonderful structure.

For hotter climate, make your manner down south to Seville or Malaga. Or, you may at all times hop to the Canary Islands and Majora for the last word seaside getaway. Foodies and tradition addicts will get pleasure from spending the day museum hopping and tapas sampling by way of Spain.

  • Price range: €70-€80/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €20-€40
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €60-€70
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €8
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €3
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €2.20 a technique

Backpacking the Netherlands (Holland)

Backpackers flock to Amsterdam for the gorgeous canals, world-class museums, and raging nightlife. Nevertheless, there are a lot of different picturesque cities and villages to go to within the Netherlands.

As an illustration, you may spend just a few days in among the Netherlands’ different large cities, like The Hague and Rotterdam. Or, make your solution to Giethoorn, a fairy-tale-like metropolis with lush inexperienced foliage and dozens of picturesque canals.

  • Price range: €90-€100/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €20-€40
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €70-€80
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €10
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €3
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €3.50 a technique

Backpacking Japanese Europe

Japanese Europe is usually missed by travellers in favour of well-known international locations like France, Germany, and Italy. However for the adventurous backpacker who’s in search of one thing a bit completely different, japanese Europe packs a giant punch. To place it merely, international locations in Japanese Europe are breathtaking. To not point out, it’s often rather a lot cheaper than Western Europe.

If you wish to get off the overwhelmed path and make your greenback stretch additional, try my favorite locations in Japanese Europe.

Backpacking the Czech Republic (Czechia)

Teeming with gothic structure and cobblestoned cities, the Czech Republic is without doubt one of the best international locations to succeed in from Western Europe. It’s only a brief prepare journey away from Germany, Poland, and Austria.

Structure lovers should go to Prague, the nation’s capital metropolis — in any other case generally known as the “Metropolis of a Hundred Spires”. Different cities, equivalent to Český Krumlov and Brno, are much less touristy however equally beautiful to go to.

  • Price range: €60-€70/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €20-€30
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €60-€70
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €6
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €1.50
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €1.50 a technique

Backpacking Bulgaria

Positioned on the Black Sea, Bulgaria is a superb vacation spot for many who need each seaside and metropolis life. The capital of Sofia has 2,000 years price of historical past, which is mirrored by town’s numerous and ornate structure. After just a few days within the metropolis, head to culture-rich Plovdiv, or Varna, a small resort city positioned on the Black Sea. This vacation spot is inexpensive and recognized for its white-sand seashores and sunbathing.

  • Price range: €30-€40/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €10-€20
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €30-€40
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €3
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €2
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €.80 a technique 
backpacking europe plovdiv

Backpacking Romania

From the forested area of Transylvania to the clifftop fortress of Bran Fort, Romania is dotted with otherworldly sights. Metropolis-goers can spend time exploring Bucharest and Brașov, whereas out of doors lovers will revel within the majestic marvel of the Carpathian Mountains.

Most travellers truly spend extra time within the open air right here than they do within the metropolis! Better of all, Romania is without doubt one of the most cost-effective locations to go to in Japanese Europe.

  • Price range: €30-€40/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €10-€15
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €30-€40
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €4
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €2
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €1 a technique

Backpacking Hungary

Splendid for everybody from price range backpackers to high-end travellers, Hungary is a rustic that pulls you in. In Budapest, you will have gritty hostels and avenue meals stalls standing subsequent to luxurious resorts and connoisseur eating places. It oozes class and royalty, nonetheless, nonetheless manages to pay homage to its numerous cultural heritage.

  • Price range: €40-€50/day
  • Common Dorm Mattress Price: €15-€30
  • Common Price range Resort Price: €30-€40
  • Common Price range Meal Price: €7
  • Price of Beer in Restaurant: €1.50
  • Price of Transport by Prepare: €1.50 a technique 

Advisable Itineraries for Backpacking Europe

There are 44 international locations in Europe, which might make planning the best backpacking itinerary a little bit of a problem. Except you will have a limiteless price range and trip time, you’ll should be strategic about the place you go to. If you happen to want some inspiration, then check out a few of my pattern journey itineraries.

2 Weeks in Western Europe: First Time Travellers

If you happen to’re coming over to Europe for the primary time, you’ll be wanting to see as a lot as you may in only a brief period of time. Though it’s a whirlwind tour, this 2-week itinerary takes you to Western Europe’s most iconic cities.

Whereas two weeks isn’t sufficient time in Europe, you may nonetheless benefit from your go to by tackling the most important highlights and sights.

Day 1-3: London, the UK
Day 3-6: Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Day 6-8: Berlin, Germany
Day 8-11: Paris, France
Day 11-14: Barcelona, Spain

2 Weeks in Japanese Europe: First Time Travellers

If you happen to’re trying to save a couple of dollars in your first backpacking journey, then think about heading to Japanese Europe. Lodging, meals, and leisure are less expensive there than in Western Europe, that means you may really feel comfy shopping for your new hostel associates an additional spherical of drinks.

Between the traditional cities and ornate structure, you’ll be capable to make your manner by way of a few of Japanese Europe’s most beautiful locations.

Day 1-3: Prague, the Czech Republic
Day 3-5: Krakow, Poland
Day 5-7: Bratislava, Slovakia
Day 7-10: Budapest, Hungary
Day 10-12: Bucharest, Romania
Day 12-14: Sofia, Bulgaria

1 Month in Japanese and Western Europe: Highlights

With one month in Europe, you’ll be capable to get a really feel for the environment and tradition of every nation. Not solely are you able to spend time within the large cities, however you’ll additionally get an opportunity to enterprise to smaller villages and cities. By escaping the vacationer traps, you’ll get monetary savings and see a extra genuine lifestyle.

Day 1-3: Paris, France
Day 3-5: Good, France
Day 5-8: Barcelona, Spain
Day 8-10: Seville, Spain
Day 10-14: Rome, Italy
Day 14-16: Florence, Italy
Day 16-19: Munich, Germany
Day 19-21: Prague, the Czech Republic
Day 21-24: Budapest, Hungary
Day 24-26: Cluj-Napoca, Romania
Day 26-28: Bucharest, Romania
Day 28-30: Sofia, Bulgaria

backpacking europe italy

1 Month in Western Europe: Sluggish Paced

Typically, it’s higher to soak within the metropolis slightly than race by way of it. Sluggish-paced travellers can nonetheless backpack by way of Europe and benefit from the completely different websites many European international locations have to supply. As a profit, you’ll additionally spend much less time (and cash) on the highway.

Day 1-4: Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Day 4-8: Berlin, Germany
Day 8-12: Munich, Germany
Day 12-14: Zurich, Switzerland
Day 14-17: Milan, Italy
Day 17-21: Barcelona, Spain
Day 21-25: Madrid, Spain
Day 25-28: Lisbon, Portugal
Day 28-30: Porto, Portugal

Is Backpacking Europe Protected?

Once I instructed folks I used to be backpacking by way of Europe, their first thought was “Is Europe Protected?” In any case, I used to be a solo feminine traveller staying in hostels, taking trains, and strolling alone for eight months. Their considerations had been wholly justified.

Nevertheless, it’s onerous to reply point-blank if Europe is protected or not. Security will rely upon a wide range of elements, together with the place and how you journey. Whereas each place world wide has its personal set of risks, there are just a few methods to be protected whereas backpacking Europe.

Take Care of Your Valuables

Irrespective of if you happen to’re in a giant metropolis or small village, it’s at all times necessary to control your private belongings. Pickpockets and thieves might be wherever.

Don’t carry round giant quantities of money, and check out to not put on something you don’t need to lose, like costly sun shades or superb jewelry. If you happen to’re staying in a resort, preserve your passport and valuables locked within the resort protected. And if you happen to’re in a hostel, spend money on a padlock to maintain your luggage safe all through the evening.

Make Dependable Buddies

Take it from me, backpacking alone is a improbable expertise. You get the possibility to satisfy new folks in hostels and even pleasant locals within the cafe. In my view, it’s essential to make reliable associates through the journey. Not solely will you will have somebody to hang around with, however they’ll be there that will help you in case something goes awry.

Inform Household and Buddies Your Itinerary

Earlier than you permit to your journey, give your loved ones and associates your detailed itinerary. Write down the handle of your hostels, particulars of your prepare journey, and some other data that can be utilized to succeed in you. Don’t overlook additionally to inform them in case your plans change!

Get Journey Insurance coverage

One of the necessary issues you may take in your journey is worldwide journey insurance coverage. Journey insurance coverage protects you in opposition to a wide range of travel-related incidents and may prevent 1000’s of {dollars} in payments and bills.

Good journey insurance coverage ought to present protection for emergency medical therapies, emergency evacuation, and journey cancellation and interruption. It may also embrace safety for misplaced and stolen baggage, in addition to missed or delayed flights.

Know The place the Nearest Embassy or Consulate Is

If one thing had been to go improper in your journey, it’s essential that you would be able to flip to your own home nation embassy for assist. Most international locations in Europe have one embassy and a number of consulate workplaces to your dwelling nation. From misplaced passports to medical emergencies, the embassy ought to be capable to help you in dire instances of want.

renting a car in europe

Backpacking Europe Off the Crushed Path

If it’s your first time in Europe, you’ll most likely need to go to the large cities and common landmarks. Who can blame you – the Eiffel Tower at evening is spectacular! Nevertheless, among the finest reminiscences shall be made if you happen to get off the overwhelmed path.

Positive, touristy cities are common for a purpose. Then again, you’ll be shoulder to shoulder with different vacationers slightly than immersing your self with the locals. If you happen to’re in search of an genuine expertise in your nation, I like to recommend wanting exterior the guidebooks and discovering just a few hidden gems by yourself.

Develop into Buddies with Locals

Locals have the perfect recommendations on what to see and do of their dwelling nation. They know the place all the perfect eating places are, the place you may rating good offers on garments and souvenirs, and most significantly, the place you have to be spending your time throughout your journey.

Fb, MeetUp, and Couchsurfing are three wonderful websites for assembly different travellers and locals. Or if you happen to’re feeling pleasant, you may at all times ask your waitress, bartender, or resort workers to level you in the best path.

Lease a Automobile or Scooter

If you happen to solely depend on trains and buses, you’re restricted to the place you may go within the nation. Most public transport programs take you the place the touristy websites are within the metropolis centre or to the residential suburbs. By renting a automobile or scooter, you’ll be capable to enterprise wherever your coronary heart needs.

Moreover, you may go at your personal tempo. Because you’re not tethered to a good prepare schedule, you may discover the complete space at your leisure.

Do Your Analysis – However Not Too A lot!

As a substitute of studying a guidebook for the perfect locations to go to, I like to recommend scouring the web for recommendation. You’ll discover a whole bunch of websites and journey blogs (with footage) about completely different locations different folks have stumbled upon. And chances are high, the areas shall be manner much less touristy than what your guidebook recommends.

Though it’s good to do your homework, attempt to not stick with a strict itinerary. Be at liberty to be open-minded and take just a few dangers! A few of the finest experiences are those that occur if you least anticipate them.

The Finest Off the Crushed Path Locations in Europe

By now, it is best to have an concept of the place you’d like to go to whereas backpacking in Europe. However for extra inspiration, check out my favorite secret and tucked away locations all through the continent.

  • Cavtat, Croatia: This portside village is only a stone’s throw away from the center of Dubrovnik, Croatia’s most well-known walled metropolis. Alongside the water, you’ll discover out of doors cafes, boutique outlets, and sun-soaked seashores.
  • Reims, France: If you happen to’re wanting so as to add a little bit of luxurious to your backpacking journey, head to French champagne nation. Reims is surrounded by dozens of champagne caves and tasting rooms the place you may pattern this bubbly favorite.
  • Orvieto, Italy: Nestled on the cliffside of a volcano, Orvieto is a cultured, charming village in the course of Umbria. Come for the breathtaking views or pattern among the most scrumptious handmade pasta from a family-run restaurant.
  • Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber, Germany: Ripped proper from the pages of a fairy story, Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber is a picturesque medieval city. This walled metropolis might be visited only for a day journey. Nevertheless, I like to recommend staying just a few days round Christmas for the well-known Christmas market!
  • Cluj-Napoca, Romania: Within the coronary heart of Transylvania sits Cluj-Napoca, a vibrant, vibrant metropolis recognized for its energetic scholar inhabitants. After testing their cobblestoned previous city, sit down in an out of doors cafe and luxuriate in a pleasant, low cost cup of espresso.
Travelling in Europe: Highlights From Two Months On The Road

Backpacking Europe: The Finest Hikes

After all, the large cities in Europe are great on their very own. Nevertheless, it’s the pure fantastic thing about the outside that brings these international locations to life. For a breath of contemporary air, think about embarking on an out of doors journey with one in all these wonderful back-country hikes in Europe.

You’ll discover trails and hikes wherever there are mountains, however listed below are among the hottest journies in Europe.

Camino de Santiago, Spain

Attracting religious and leisure hikers alike, the Camino de Santiago has 300 years of custom. This hottest route takes roughly a month and leads you from the Camino Frances from St. Jean Pied de Port in France to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Be ready to satisfy tons of different like-minded people who’re additionally on a self-discovery journey. Click on right here to be taught extra.

Japanese Dolomites, Italy

Many individuals flock to the Dolomites within the winter for picture-perfect snowboarding and snowboarding situations. Nevertheless, Japanese Dolomites can also be an important place for climbing within the spring or summer season.

Contemplate making the trek from Dobbiaco to Belluno on this 10-day climbing tour of Italy. The best level of the journey is nearly 3,000-meters above sea stage, the place you’ll get to get pleasure from marvellous views of neighbouring Tofana and Lagazuoi.

Slovenian Mountain Path, Slovenia

Crossing over 5 completely different mountains, the Slovenian Mountain Path is without doubt one of the finest Japanese European backpacking trails. In simply 28 days, you’ll get to discover Slovenia’s most interesting – Pohorje Hills, Kamnik and Savinja Alps, the Karavanke Alps, and the Julian Alps. It’s not a visit for the faint of coronary heart, nevertheless it’s a must-do for any nature lover!

Eagle’s Stroll, Austria

With over 33 completely different trails, Austria’s Eagle’s Stroll is ideal for each day journeys and long-distance hikes. Freshmen will benefit from the flat, leisurely tempo alongside Lake Zireiner See, whereas consultants can take the complete 24-day problem to see as a lot of South Tirol as they will.

There are dozens of huts and inns alongside the best way, the place you may eat and spend the evening. Since they will e book out prematurely, I like to recommend reserving a mattress forward of time.

Samaria Gorge, Greece

If you end up in Crete, then think about taking the journey throughout the beautiful Samaria Gorge. This 16 kilometer hike is good for intermediate or skilled travellers, because the trek to the highest might be steep and rocky. Nevertheless, the dramatic views from the 100-metre peak make it price it.

Bohemian Switzerland, the Czech Republic

Regardless of its identify, Bohemian Switzerland truly runs from Germany into the Czech Republic! Positioned only some hours from Prague, this brief, leisurely hike boasts among the coolest karst formations in the complete nation. The spotlight of the hike is Pravčická Gate, a singular rock bridge that was used within the Chronicles of Narnia movie.

Able to Go Backpacking Europe?

Now that you’ve got an concept of what backpacking Europe is like, it’s time to begin planning your superb vacation. Spend just a few weeks train-hopping by way of Germany, sunbathing within the south of Spain, or driving down the coast from Romania to Bulgaria. Irrespective of if you happen to select Japanese Europe, Western Europe, or each, your choices for journey are limitless.

Even you probably have only one week, you may nonetheless get pleasure from many cities and sights on this once-in-a-lifetime journey. However with extra time, you’ll actually get to immerse your self in your environment.

And bear in mind, it’s at all times necessary to journey with an open thoughts. As a backpacker, you’ll inevitably expertise new cultures and have the chance to satisfy folks from world wide. So long as you’re open to new experiences, I’m certain you’re going to have an unforgettable backpacking journey.

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