5 Wicked European Cities That Will Test Your Loyalty To London

Lucy Bloxham Lucy Bloxham


You know we love London. Of course we do – we’ve dedicated our lives to this wonderfully mad city. But we have to admit that perhaps sometimes we are a little biased when we say that we live in the best city in the world. Well actually, no we’re not. But there are some cities that do some things maybe a bit better than us (yes, aside from the weather, clever clogs). And since most of them are probably quicker to get to than your morning commute, what’s the harm in giving them a try? You’ll either be nicely surprised, or it’ll make you appreciate London even more than you already do. If that’s at all possible…



1. Amsterdam

An obvious choice, perhaps, but we haven’t actually chosen this for the obvious reason (although that is also a plus…) Amsterdam undoubtedly outdoes London when it comes to cycling. Despite its best efforts, London’s roads are still insanely dangerous for cyclists, giving Amsterdam some serious pedal appeal for any of you city-cycling enthusiasts. It’s also as flat as a dutch pancake which always helps…

Note: they also do really good cakes…


2. Copenhagen

Perhaps the coolest kid on the Nordic block, Copenhagen could well be one of London’s biggest rivals. Not only is it coming up close behind the big smoke as one of the most expensive cities in Europe – don’t worry though, we’re winning on that one…yaayyyy – but Denmark’s beauty of a city has uncanny similarities to London that run the risk of putting us to shame. Does it do multi-coloured houses better than Notting Hill? Perhaps not. With a royal history of 1,000 years does it do better on the palace and castle score? Yes, by square inch, but Buckingham Palace probably still leads as most iconic.  But is its Christmas Markets better than Winter Wonderland, Barbican and South Bank put together? Yes, abso-frickin-lutely. Rats. Or, rather not rats. It’s also the second cleanest city in Europe. Show offs.


3. Valencia

Known perhaps most famously for its City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia is a city with unparalleled variety. From beaches to mountains, to lakes and parks, there is something for everyone. And while this is a pretttyy controversial statement, the food is asomBROSO! Fever has some great foodie deals such as Montadito’s for 3 euros a pop!


4. Riga

Latvia’s seaside capital is all about the architecture. With Gothic spires and flamboyant art nouveau, Riga’s beauty and diversity puts London’s vegetable inspired buildings into a right pickle. And while we may think there’s no place quite like London where old and new exist as one (catching the Tower and Shard in the same sight line is bizarre), Riga arguably takes the lead. Sorry walkie talkie, better luck next time.


5. Barcelona

Sorry Primrose Hill, but Barcelona takes first place for most breathtaking views of a city. Park Güell (in picture), is a system of parks and gardens that offers seriously stunning views of the city (and the sea). Not quite convinced? We hate to admit it, but even the Shard can’t match up to the mind-blowing mountain that is Tibidabo, overlooking Barcelona and giving spectacular spectacular views of the city. And in case that wasn’t quite impressive enough…it’s also an amusement park. So, err, yeh. Soz, London.


Featured Image Credit: PHP

Tags: travel
Wellness & Nature