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10 Affordable (And Truly Beautiful) Cities in Europe That You Can Go Right Now

10 Affordable (And Truly Beautiful) Cities in Europe That You Can Go Right Now

Scrolling down your Instagram and you see your friends swimming at the beautiful beaches in Spain, visiting the Eiffel Tower in Paris or sipping their cup of coffee at a cafe in Italy while you are still sitting at home dreaming about going to Europe, but think you can’t?

Think again, because the euro just hits a 20-month low, making it a perfect time for your Europe dream.[1]

As an avid and frequent traveler, I’ve always loved Europe.

European know how to enjoy life and there’re a lot of amazing places to explore in Europe. From the beautiful harbors in Southern France, to the incredible architecture in Spain, the amazing castles in Germany and the stunning alps in Switzerland and more; there’s just so much you can see there. And not to mention the food there, just try to think about how persistent Italian are when it comes to the quality of food including the pasta, pizza and even just a cup of coffee.

Having studied in Madrid for half a year, I’d like to suggest you some of the most affordable cities to visit in Europe. You really don’t need to spend a lot to have a memorable trip in Europe, here we go:

1. Seville, Spain

    ▲ Plaza de España

    Seville is the birthplace of Flamenco and a day in this passionate city with a double-sized bed will cost you $30 on Airbnb.

    Instead of paying to watch Flamenco dancing in the US or your hometown, watch it for free at bars like the famous El Palacio Andaluz or La Carbonería at the birthplace of this hot and passionate dance. If you make it in time in April, you could also go to the festival ‘Feria de Abril’ in Seville to see the passion and hospitality of Spaniards.

    Visit the Plaza de España, Metropol Parasol and Palace of San Telmo to enjoy the not-to-be-missed architecture in this cultural hub of southern Spain. Save your Sunday morning before 2:30pm to visit the Seville Cathedral because it is free!

    Do not forget to try out all different kinds of tapas there! (And usually if you order a beer at the bar, you’ll get tapas for free!)

    2. Porto, Portugal

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      ▲ The port in Porto

      Accommodations in Porto are affordable as most of them are priced locally. A decent double bedroom costs you less than $20.

      Traveling in this second largest city in Portugal and a world heritage listed by the UNESCO in 1996, you will be able to explore the historical sides of the Europe by visiting the Porto Cathedrals, the beautifully painted São Bento Railway Station which inaugurated in 191 and the Ponte de Dom Luis I bridge that allow you to get the best views over Porto.

      The awesome part is, they are all free. If you are up for some wine in this world’s top wine destination, pay $3USD to try their the local port wine.

      3. Berlin, Germany

        ▲ Berlin Cathedral

        While you might not believe, but it’s actually not expensive to travel in the capital of Germany.

        A comfy two-person bedroom costs less than $25 on Airbnb and a dinner out in beer halls or average restaurants would be around $8-16.

        Being one of the most multicultural cities, not only will you be able to experience the energetic vibes of the Berliners’, but also get to try out different kinds of food, be it kebab or currywurst can go as cheap as less than $3. If you are on a budget but still wanna drink, go to those beer halls or bars only in happy hours.

        Berlin has many world-class museums which offer student discount for entry, so make sure you bring your student cards when visiting the museums like the Checkpoint Charlie Museum. The Berlin Wall is also a must-go spot — an important symbol of the German unification.

        4. Tallinn, Estonia

          ▲ Tallinn Immagini Credit: visitestonia

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          Tallinn is able to offer everything in a much lower price than you find in Western Europe. A double-sized bed costs $20 per day on Airbnb, double if near the old-town center and a budget dinner would cost around $7-14.

          The Sõõrikukohvik Donut Cafe is the place to be for a budgeted meal with salads, pancakes, Estonian-styled donuts etc.

          Instead of going to towers or hotels to enjoy the views of Tallinn, you can simply go up to the Toompea Hill and enjoy the beauty of Tallinn for free.

          Remember to visit the world heritage – the Old Town of Tallinn, join a free tour there to get the most out of it.

          5. Prague, Czech Republic

            ▲ Charles Bridge Credit: Prague.eu

            One should not be unfamiliar with the word – Prague when doing budgeted travel. Although the Czech currency has been rising over the years, you could still find cheap, decent and cozy double-bed bedroom for less than $20 per night on airbnb. And it would cost around $6-10 to dine out in Prague.

            Make sure you go to see the huge Prague Castle which offer some free parts to enter, a short visit would cost you for only $10.

            Also visit The Prague National Gallery which holds the country’s most treasured art pieces after 4pm because it would be cheaper. You might also want to try drinking inside a nuclear fallout center in Bunkr Parukarka.[2]

            6. Krakow, Poland

              ▲ Main Market Square  Credit: inyourpocket

              Krakow has a lower costs of living than those in Western Europe. Just like Prague, Krakow is listed as the one of the best-valued destination in Europe in 2017.

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              Visit the known historical monument and world heritage – the Old Town where you can see the historical european monuments and churches showing you the classic Europe.

              There are also free walking tours available daily leaving from the main square and one should visit the Auschwitz Concentration Camps for one to understand the painful memories of war for the Pole and the entrance fee is free.

              7. Brussels, Belgium

                ▲ Grand Place  Credit: LonelyPlanet

                You could get cozy accommodation for two in Brussels for $20 on Airbnb, and a dinner at an average restaurant would cost you from $9 to $17.

                Do visit the oldest Musées Royaux Art et Histoire to see the most important art pieces in the world. The Grand Place and Palais de Justice are what you should see too if you’re fond on the European architecture. There are also free walking tours available on sites like New Europe Tours.

                Do try the locally-made Belgium chocolate at Leonidas too!

                8. Granada, Spain

                  ▲ Alhambra Palace

                  It would cost you $9-16 to dine out in Granada and you could easily find room for two to stay overnight for less than $20.

                  You must not miss the historical Alhambra Palace, a palace and fortress complex with Arabic architectural style. The tickets get sold out easily, so it’s better for you to book your tickets in advance, or you’ll have to queue for the tickets at the door very early in the morning.

                  Remember to visit the Cathedral of Granada as it is the second largest cathedral in Spain and the Royal Chapel to see the historical sides of Spain. They are all under $5.

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                  Go dine at some local restaurants and bars that give you free tapas upon a beer order to save some money!

                  9. Split, Croatia

                    Credit: VisitSplit

                    Splits in Croatia is known for its blue coastlines and beaches. The accommodations here are in good value, a room with sea views for two costs you less than $30 per day.

                    Visit the Campanile Bell Tower to walk up to the tower and enjoy the views of Split. Also visit the gallaries there like the Meštrović Gallery and Gallery of Fine Arts for less than $5.

                    Dinner is ranged from $7-14, at a rather cheap price comparing with dining in the other parts of Europe. Make sure you get seafood from the local restaurants.

                    10. Naples, Italy

                      In one of the oldest continuos inhabited cities in the world, Naples has plenty of historical museums and architectures that are worth visiting.

                      Although you cannot get hotels or hostels as cheap as those in Eastern Europe, it is relatively cheap compared with the northern sides of Italy with less tan $20 for a day in a hostel and less than $40 for a three-started hotel with convenient transportations nearby.

                      Visit the National Museum of Capodimonte which opened in 1957 for some of the finest Italian paintings .

                      Food and drinks here are just like the accommodation, reasonable and cheaper than in the cities in the south of Italy.

                      Now you are ready to go, time to pack your bag, buy your tickets and explore Europe!

                      Reference

                      More by this author

                      Anna Chui

                      Anna is a communication expert and a life enthusiast. She's the editor of Lifehack and loves to write about love, life, and passion.

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                      Last Updated on July 23, 2019

                      5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

                      5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

                      In the journey of growth, there are times when we grow and excel. We are endlessly driven and hyped up, motivated to get our goals.

                      Then there are times when we stagnate. We feel uninspired and unmotivated. We keep procrastinating on our plans. More often than not, we get out of a rut, only to get back into another one.

                      How do you know if you are stagnating? Here are some tell-tale signs:

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                      • If you have been experiencing chronic procrastination on your goals
                      • If you don’t ever feel like doing anything
                      • If you keep turning to sleep, eating, games, mindless activities and entertainment for comfort
                      • If you know you should be doing something, but yet you keep avoiding it
                      • If you have not achieved anything new or significant now relative to 1 month, 2 months or 3 months ago
                      • If you have a deep sense of feeling that you are living under your potential

                      When we face stagnation in life, it’s a sign of deeper issues. Stagnation, just like procrastination, is a symptom of a problem. It’s easy to beat ourselves over it, but this approach is not going to help. Here, I will share 5 steps to help you move out of this stagnation. They won’t magically transform your life in 1 night (such changes are never permanent because the foundations are not built), but they will help you get the momentum going and help you get back on track.

                      1. Realize You’re Not Alone

                      Everyone stagnates at some point or another. You are not alone in this and more importantly, it’s normal. In fact, it’s amazing how many of my clients actually face the same predicament, even though all of them come from different walks of life, are of different ages, and have never crossed paths. Realizing you are not alone in this will make it much easier to deal with this period. By trying to “fight it”, you’re only fighting yourself. Accept this situation, acknowledge it, and tell yourself it’s okay. That way, you can then focus on the constructive steps that will really help you.

                      2. Find What Inspires You

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                      Stagnation comes because there isn’t anything that excites you enough to take action. If you don’t have a habit of setting goals, and instead just leave yourself to daily mundanes, it’s not surprising you are experiencing stagnation. What do you want to do if there are no limitations? If you can have whatever you want, what will it be? The answers to these questions will provide the fuel that will drive you forward.

                      On the other hand, even if you are an experienced goal setter, there are times when the goals you set in the past lose their appeal now. It’s normal and it happens to me too. Sometimes we lose touch with our goals, since we are in a different emotional state compared to when we first set them. Sometimes our priorities change and we no longer want to work on those goals anymore. However, we don’t consciously realize this, and what happens is we procrastinate on our goals until it compounds into a serious problem. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to relook into your goals. There’s no point in pursuing goals that no longer inspire you. Trash away your old goals (or just put them aside) and ask yourself what you really want now. Then go for them.

                      3. Give Yourself a Break

                      When’s the last time you took a real break for yourself? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year? Never? Perhaps it’s time to take a time-out. Prolonged working can cause someone to become disillusioned as they lose sight of who they are and what they want.

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                      Go take some extended leave from work. A few days at bare minimum; a few weeks or months will be great. Some of my ex-colleagues have quit their jobs and took months out to do some self-reflection. Of course, some of us might not have that luxury, so we can stick to a few weeks of leave. Go on a trip elsewhere and get away from your work and your life. Use this chance to get a renewed perspective of life. Think about your life purpose, what you want and what you want to create for your life in the future. These are big questions that require deep thinking over them. It’s not about finding the answers at one go, but about taking the first step to finding the answers.

                      4. Shake up Your Routines

                      Being in the same environment, doing the same things over and over again and meeting the same people can make us stagnant. This is especially if the people you spend the most time with are stagnant themselves.

                      Change things around. Start with simple things, like taking a different route to work and eating something different for breakfast. Have your lunch with different colleagues, colleagues you never talked much with. Work in a different cubicle if your work has free and easy seating. Do something different than your usual for weekday evenings and weekends. Cultivate different habits, like exercising every day, listening to a new series of podcasts every morning to work, reading a book, etc (here’s 6 Proven Ways To Make New Habits Stick). The different contexts will give you different stimulus, which will trigger off different thoughts and actions in you.

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                      When I’m in a state of stagnancy, I’ll get a sense of what’s making me stagnate. Sometimes it’s the environment I’m in, sometimes it’s the people I’ve been hanging out with, sometimes it’s my lifestyle. Most of the times it’s a combination of all these. Changing them up helps to stir myself out of the stagnant mode.

                      5. Start with a Small Step

                      Stagnation also comes from being frozen in fear. Maybe you do want this certain goal, but you aren’t taking action. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work needed? Are you afraid you will make mistakes? Is the perfectionist in you taking over and paralyzing you?

                      Let go of the belief that it has to be perfect. Such a belief is a bane, not a boon. It’s precisely from being open to mistakes and errors that you move forward. Break down what’s before you into very very small steps, then take those small steps, a little step at a time. I had a client who had been stagnating for a long period because he was afraid of failing. He didn’t want to make another move where he would make a mistake. However, not wanting to make a mistake has led him to do absolutely nothing for 2-3 years. On the other hand, by doing just something, you would already be making progress, whether it’s a mistake or not. Even if you make a supposed “mistake”,  you get feedback to do things differently in the next step. That’s something you would never have known if you never made a move.

                      More to Help You Stay Motivated

                      Here are some resources that will help you break out of your current phase:

                      Featured photo credit: Anubhav Saxena via unsplash.com

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