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25 Best Places to Visit in Eastern Europe

Eastern Europe might not be everyone’s number one travel destination. Communist-era buildings, the conflicts in the 1990s and border disputes in recent years have meant much of the region has been overlooked by potential tourists.

But with its patchwork of pretty, pastel-colored old towns, incredible ancient history, exciting nightlife, and nature from sprawling lakes to swooping mountains, Eastern Europe is a surprising delight. History, culture, nature, ethnicity – all of them mix into an intriguing swirl that’s making this part of Europe an increasingly popular vacation destination.

25. Vilnius [SEE MAP]

Vilnius

© Darius Strazdas / Dreamstime

Vilnius is the Lithuanian capital which comes complete with a particularly beautiful old town. This heart of the city boasts Baroque architecture along its cobblestone streets. But you can see more than just Baroque: there’s the Gothic Saint Anne’s Church, the 16th-century Gate of Dawn, and the Neo-Classical Vilnius Cathedral.

Other than being home to Europe’s largest Baroque old town, Vilnius contains an array of bars and cafes hidden down charming alleyways and lining atmospheric courtyards. With a large population of students (over 20,000 of them), after night falls, Vilnius becomes a vibrant destination with flowing beer and live music.

24. Minsk [SEE MAP]

Minsk

© Ryhor Bruyeu / Dreamstime

Minsk is the Belarusian capital. Completely destroyed during World War II, the city sadly no longer has much in the way of historical monuments or buildings. With that in mind, much of Minsk is actually made up of Stalinist architecture, such as Independence Square, a sprawling former KGB headquarters, and more recent, very impressive churches.

Nowadays, Minsk is a modern city with cool cafes to chill out in with a coffee, restaurants with international cuisine, and interesting art galleries. It’s a cosmopolitan capital that seems to be moving with the times, with a host of nightclubs and bars to visit in the evenings.

23. High Tatras [SEE MAP]

High Tatras

© Guantana / Dreamstime

This rugged collection of mountains on the border of northern Slovakian is the tallest range in the Carpathian Mountains. Mount Krivan is the highest peak and is a symbol of the Slovak pride, luring many of its countrymen to climb to the summit.

Over a hundred emerald lakes, gushing waterfalls, and Alpine meadows characterize this beautiful region, making it a great place to hike around; in the winter skiers flock to the snow-covered slopes of the High Tatras. Luckily, you can stay in this marvel of nature, thanks to accommodation ranging from lakefront lodgings to more rustic mountainside retreats.

22. Sofia [SEE MAP]

Sofia

© Stoyan Haytov / Dreamstime

The Bulgarian capital of Sofia sits in the west of the country. Being something of a crossroads for Europe, it has attracted invaders and settlers alike for the past 2,000 years. Its architecture and landmarks reflect the history of the region, including Ottoman mosques, Greek temples, Roman ruins, and Soviet monuments.

Despite its age, Sofia is a surprisingly youthful city with a laid-back atmosphere, where its citizens enjoy relaxing in green parks and strolling along the boulevard. There are plenty of museums and galleries for you to delve into, but on the other hand, nightlife abounds, with a plethora of restaurants and nightclubs.

21. Butrint National Park [SEE MAP]

Butrint National Park

© Todorovic / Dreamstime

Butrint National Park sits in the south of the little-visited Balkan mystery of Albania, just across the sea from Corfu. It’s got just about everything you could want in a national park – lakes, marshes, grassy plains, wetlands, and even archaeological sites. These include the site of Butrint itself; known in Latin as Buthrotum, it’s full of ancient architecture, including a very well preserved Roman-era theatre and a Greek acropolis.

Elsewhere, this park boasts remote, rocky islands; one even features a 15th-century Venetian fortress known as the Ali Pasha Castle. Visitors looking to stay in Butrint should choose one of the few informal, family-run lodgings here.

20. Cesky Krumlov [SEE MAP]

Cesky Krumlov

donald judge / Flickr

In the South Bohemia region in the Czech Republic lies Cesky Krumlov. This historic city is a supremely picturesque place to visit; think orange-tiled rooftops and the pretty riverside of the Vltava River, all flanked by green, rolling hills.

Made up of Renaissance and Baroque architecture, the town is overlooked by an impressive 13th-century castle, patchworked with a variety of styles through the ages; there’s also an ornate Baroque theatre to marvel at here.

It’s a town that should not be missed because of its sheer charm and beauty. Come in summer and stay till the sun goes down to watch the energetic city come alive with bars and restaurants.

19. Golden Ring [SEE MAP]

Golden Ring

This is a vast area northeast of Moscow, Russia, that encompasses a handful of historic Russian cities. The medieval towns form a ‘Golden Ring,’ and due to their significance in the early history of Russia and the Rus tribe who founded it, have been labeled open-air museums.

The main towns are Sergiyev Posad, Kostroma, Ivanovo, Vladimir, Suzdal, Yarislavl, Perislavl-Zalessky, and Rostov Veliky. There are significant religious sites such as the 14th-century monastery of Troitse-Sergieva Lavra, grand buildings like Yarislavl, and other churches telling the story of a millennium of Russian Orthodox history.

18. Warsaw [SEE MAP]

Warsaw

The Polish capital of Warsaw has had a long, complex history, often marked by war and conflict. It was very much damaged during World War II, for instance, with the old town destroyed. However, it has been lovingly rebuilt to its former medieval glory, with brightly colored townhouses making for a pretty – if slightly artificial – place to wander around.

There’s a mixed bag of architecture across the city, including contemporary cafes and bars to discover. There are plenty of outdoor spaces to enjoy and, with a lot of restaurants and some culinary brilliance going on, it’s an excellent destination for foodies.

17. Lake Balaton [SEE MAP]

Lake Balaton

Set in western Hungary, the holiday destination of Lake Balaton is awash with beautiful beaches along its shores, as well as resort towns. Flanked by volcanic hills, it’s the largest lake in Eastern Europe, and is thought of as the ‘Hungarian Inner Sea.’

On the northern shores, you’ll find the town of Szigliget, home to a medieval fortress, and the oldest medieval town in the area – Tihany. This old town features a stunning Baroque abbey as its centerpiece.

If you like wine, you’ll be happy to know that Lake Balaton is famous for its vineyards, which dot the surrounding hills. Windsurfing and sailing are popular during the summer months.

16. Mostar [SEE MAP]

Mostar

Mostar, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, is famous for its Old Bridge over the Neretva River; in fact, the name Mostar derives from mostari, meaning ‘bridge keeper.’ The bridge was built in 1556 under the orders of the occupying Ottomans, but was destroyed 427 years later in 1993 by Croat forces during the Balkan Wars.

Though it’s easily reachable on a day trip from neighboring Croatia, to get the most out of your visit to Mostar, the best thing to do is stay overnight. The crowds of daytrippers trickle away, and the restaurants high above the river along cobbled streets light up.

15. Riga [SEE MAP]

Riga

Situated on the Baltic Sea, Latvia’s capital is a mix of traditional and contemporary lifestyles. It’s an energetic place, where culture combines with the cobblestone streets for an exciting city atmosphere.

You can expect intricate Art Nouveau architecture intermingling with Gothic spires in the city’s beautiful old town, as well as a buzzing central market where you can dive into the city’s gastronomic delights – from cheese and sausage to black bread – perfect for a picnic in one of Riga’s pretty parks. Sip a cool cocktail or a local beer in one of the many pubs when night falls and the fun begins.

14. Lake Ohrid [SEE MAP]

Lake Ohrid

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Straddling the borders of Macedonia and Albania, Lake Ohrid wins not one but two accolades of the natural world: it’s one of the deepest, and also one of the oldest lakes in Europe. Most of the lake falls within Macedonia, making this the best place to base yourself to see the spectacle.

The old town of Ohrid itself, for example, is home to old architecture, family-run lodgings, and a maze of narrow, cobblestone lanes to get lost in. Further south around the lake, Sveti Naum Monastery dates back to 905 AD and is a beautiful building to behold, with views of the surrounding mountains and lake equally stunning.

13. Plitvice Lakes National Park [SEE MAP]

Plitvice Lakes National Park

Huddled in central Croatia, Plitvice Lakes National Park is famous for its 16 terraced lakes, all conjoined by waterfalls that spill into a limestone canyon. This lovely area is a playground for people with a sense of adventure, who enjoy hiking amongst fantastic scenery.

You can expect boardwalks and hiking trails that wind through limestone rock formations and cliffs, and around the variegated waters of the lakes. That color change is down to the different mineral content of each lake. It’s no wonder that this sublime area was chosen to be Croatia’s first national park – and that it’s a very popular spot in summer.

12. Belgrade [SEE MAP]

Belgrade

Belgrade is an old city. The capital of Serbia, its long history involves not only Romans and Slavic tribes, but also Ottomans and Habsburg royals. In more recent times, it was the capital of Yugoslavia.

A proud, bold city, Belgrade – while not always beautiful – has an eclectic energy all of its own, with Soviet blocks next to golden age Art Nouveau buildings; the city’s patchwork history remains. It’s also a lively place to be and one of the most hip capitals of Eastern Europe. Spend time sipping coffee in quirky cafes, stroll along the pedestrianized boulevard Knez Mihailova, and hit up one of the packed bars in the riverside Savamala quarter.

11. Kyiv [SEE MAP]

Kiev

© Phant / Dreamstime

The Ukranian capital is an intriguing place – it’s vibrant, it’s historic, it’s atmospheric. Founded in the 5th century AD, Kyiv is one of Eastern Europe’s oldest cities, and was the center of the federation of Kievan Rus’.

There are plenty of places to soak up the history, like at the Pechersk Lavra complex – an important Orthodox Christian church – as well as the Saint Sophia Cathedral, with its breathtaking interiors and golden domes.

Elsewhere, the Motherland Monument is a dizzying Soviet marvel in concrete. At weekends, Khreschatyk Street is pedestrianized and comes alive with people enjoying their days off.

10. Lake Bled [SEE MAP]

Lake Bled

Slovenia’s spectacular Lake Bled sits in the Julian Alps in the northwest of the country. This dazzling, mirror-like body of water is backed by tree-covered hills and snow-peaked mountains, for one of the most awe-inspiring natural wonders in Eastern Europe.

Here, there’s Bled Castle sitting high on a cliff above the lake, and Bled Island in the center of the lake, reached by traditional wooden boats called pletna. There are a range of hiking paths around the lake, meandering in and out of woodlands and villages. The town of Bled is a popular place to base yourself to explore the lake, but staying in the capital of Ljubljana puts you in easy reach, too.

9. Budapest [SEE MAP]

Budapest

The Hungarian capital that straddles the Danube River – and formerly the capital of the illustrious Austro-Hungarian Empire – Budapest is made up of three cities – Buda, Pest, and Obuda. Pest, in the east, is characterized by its Neo-Gothic spires – in particular, the soaring Parliament Building.

Buda, with its medieval Castle Hill, 13th-century Matthias Church, and Fisherman’s Bastion, can trace its history back to the Romans. Obuda is even older: the Roman capital of Pannonia, Aquincum, was established here in 106 AD.

Around the city, enjoy the much-loved thermal baths, spend an evening at the opera, pedal around Margaret Island, and hop around the emblematic ruin bars.

8. Bay of Kotor [SEE MAP]

Bay of Kotor

A sweeping bay in the eastern Adriatic Sea, the Bay of Kotor – also known as Boka – is situated in southwestern Montenegro. It’s a beautiful spot ringed by jagged green hills and medieval towns, with red-roofed houses spilling down to the coastline. Best explored by car along its winding roads, the region is packed full with incredible sights – from old citadels to islands topped with monasteries.

The bucolic, beautiful Bay of Kotor transcends others in the region – and there’s plenty of chances for seafood and delicious dinners by the sea to complement the scenery. Kotor old town is a Venetian wonder, surrounded by walls with a mountain backdrop that’s well worth using as a base.

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7. Tallinn [SEE MAP]

Tallinn

visittallinn.ee / Flickr

The capital of Estonia, Tallinn entices. With its 14-century old town, built as a defense system, when you walk through the impressive medieval Viru Gates, you can feel the history right away.

Parts of Tallinn’s city wall are still walkable, complete with windows where you can glimpse the charming city below; you can also get grand vistas of the city skyline from the Kohtuotsa Viewing Platform atop Toompea Hill.

There are also historic churches such as Saint Olaf’s Church, dating back to the 1200s. Tallinn has a hipster side too: former warehouses comprise Telliskivi Creative City, complete with trendy restaurants, bars, and shops.

6. Transylvania [SEE MAP]

Transylvania

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The central Romanian region of Transylvania is synonymous with stories of Dracula and bloodthirsty vampires. Whilst not entirely true, the area is mythical in terms of its natural beauty; bordered by the Carpathian Mountains, visiting Transylvania is like being transported into a slow-paced, medieval world. The countryside abounds quaint villages and local life between pastures and swathes of hills blanketed by trees.

There are many historic fortresses built by medieval German settlers, including the famous Bran Castle: these daunting spires make up what is popularly known as Dracula’s Castle. Make sure to visit the colorful city of Sighisoara, stacked with Saxon medieval architecture. You should also try out the region’s many thermal springs.

5. Saint Petersburg [SEE MAP]

Saint Petersburg

The old capital of Imperial Russia, St. Petersburg is the cultural center of the country. It was founded in 1703 by Peter the Great and is home to lavish imperial buildings. Other sights include the Mariinsky Theatre for a world class ballet and opera, the lavish 1880s Church of Spilled Blood, as well as the State Russian Museum, where you can muse over Kandinsky Pieces.

The Hermitage Museum, spread over six buildings including the beautiful Winter Palace, has an incredible collection of antiques to marvel at. St. Petersburg is also a canal city with a Baltic coastline to boot; you can expect great shopping, dining and nightlife.

4. Krakow [SEE MAP]

Krakow

PolandMFA / Flickr

This southern Polish city, close to the Czech Republic, is a former royal capital. There is a beguiling mix of medieval buildings and modern-day, youthful nightlife to soak up here. Krakow is known not only for its old town – complete with the 13th-century Rynek Glowny, a cafe-lined market square, which is where you’ll find the iconic Cloth Hall, the grandiose centerpiece of the square.

It’s also known for its Old Jewish Quarter, called Kazimierz. Once home to the Jewish community of Krakow, Kazimierz has a new lease of life with boutiques and great restaurants; you can also visit places that appeared in Schindler’s List.

3. Dubrovnik [SEE MAP]

Dubrovnik

daninho_ibk / Flickr

Set in the south of Croatia on the Adriatic Sea, Dubrovnik is famous for its old town. This walled, medieval part of town was shelled in 1991 during the Balkan Wars, but has been restored to its former glory. Take a walk along the old city walls and be beguiled by the Baroque buildings; enjoy lazy afternoons at streetside restaurants soaking up the splendor of the city.

Stroll along the Stradun – the main pedestrian walkway through town – pick up some morning produce at the market in Gundulic Square, and siesta in a range of accommodation. Fans of Game of Thrones and Star Wars can easily find filming locations around the fortress.

2. Moscow [SEE MAP]

Moscow

The Russian capital is a must-visit destination. It’s home of the Kremlin – the historic castle-turned-presidential complex – Red Square – a symbol of Russia’s power, and Lenin’s Mausoleum, where you can see the former Communist leader lying in situ.

Of course, the captivating and colorful onion domes of Saint Basil’s Cathedral are not to be missed, either. Museums, such as Pushkin State Museum and the State Tretyakov Gallery, allow you to learn more about Moscow, too.

Iconic ballet can be seen at the equally iconic Bolshoi Theatre. For nightlife and bars, head to the Garden Ring District; this is where you will find Moscow’s youthful vibrancy.

1. Prague [SEE MAP]

#1 of Best Places To Visit In Eastern Europe

Prague was given the nickname ‘City of 100 Spires,’ and it’s not wholly incorrect: the old town of Prague is bristling with Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque architecture, boasting soaring spires that make the skyline like something from another time. Now the capital of the Czech Republic, Prague was once capital of the Kingdom of Bohemia.

Prague has a lot of sights pointing to its history, like the 9th century AD Prague Castle. There’s the 14th-century Charles Bridge boasting its stunningly ornate Gothic towers, and the old town square where you’ll find Prague Astronomical Clock – the oldest still functioning in the world.

One of Europe’s most popular city destinations, Prague is also awash with lodgings, eateries, bars, and nightlife.

Top 20 Most Beautiful Countries to Visit in Eastern Europe

While it’s hard to escape the crowds in West Europe, many countries in what was formally known as Eastern Europe are often overlooked as a travel destination. Although it’s an incredibly interesting part of Europe and I personally believe Eastern Europe has a lot to offer visitors and it’s also home to some of the most beautiful countries in the world.

From the gorgeous sandy beaches of Bulgaria to the baroque architecture of historic Dubrovnik, here are my choices for 20 of the best and most beautiful countries to visit in Eastern Europe…

1. Montenegro – a beautiful underrated gem in Eastern Europe

Kotor - beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

Montenegro - beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

There is no other place so tiny and filled with so many naturally beautiful areas like Montenegro. Called “the hidden pearl of the Mediterranean” it’s easily one of the most beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe.

Montenegro is divided into three regions – the coastal region in the west which has the beautiful Riviera (Ulcinj and Budva), the central region with astonishing parks and the high mountainous area.

The first ecological state in the world, Montenegro has the second largest canyon (Tara), the most beautiful beach of the old continent in 1905-The Slavic Beach and “the mosaic-beach” of Becic. It is also home to the biggest bird reservation in Europe and many other gorgeous and unique spots. Blessed with a wild beauty, the state that gained its independence on 3 June 2006 has become a highly regarded travel destination.

Don’t leave without visiting the truly incredible city of Kotor (pictured above) located Dalmatian coast which is home to such spectacular scenery and architecture it’s been classed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the wonderful old town and then take the steps up towards the Castle of San Giovani for stunning views of the bay.

2. Czech Republic – one of the best and most popular places to visit in Eastern Europe

Czech Republic

Prague Monastery

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic sits in the heart of Europe and it’s a stunning place adorned with culture, history, and legends. It also has one of the most beautiful and romantic capitals in Europe. Prague is a popular destination for city breaks and boasts some of the best beer and most beautiful women in the world.

Further afield the entire Czech Republic is sprinkled by castles, from Hluboka Castle – the first Gothic Castle in the world (1250), to Cesky Sternberk Castle – the best-preserved Bohemian Palace. The imposing Mikulov Castle is a fine example of Baroque architecture and the Svihov Castle has a distinctive Renaissance feel.

You’ll also find great mountain areas, coquette villages, a hectic history and one of the richest cultures on the continent. The intriguing Republic of Czech is undeniably the most attractive country in Eastern Europe and in my view one of the most elegant.

3. Latvia – a stunning underrated country in Eastern Europe with a truly beautiful capital

Riga Square Latvia

Beautiful Riga Street

Sunset Liepaja Beach

Latvia is truly a beautiful underrated gem and one of my favourite countries to visit in Eastern Europe.

The locals are populated with half Russians and half native Latvians and the Latvians are very welcoming and friendly and often have a unique view on life even in spite of the very tough times they’ve been through in the past (check out the very moving Occupation Museum in Riga to find out more).

Nature and nature-centered and holistic rituals are also extremely important to their way of life which will also be very evident on your visit.

Latvia is also a pristinely beautiful place with many untouched forests and countryside. When visiting don’t miss their stunning capital Riga which is also known as the ‘Pearl of the Baltics,’ Liepaja the funky and intriguing port city blessed with a wide sandy beach and the dark tourist attraction Karosta Prison.

4. Croatia – easily one of the most beautiful countries in Eastern Europe

Dubrovnik in Croatia

Brela Beach Croatia

Croatia is a lovely country in South-East Europe. It has a thousand years of history and mixed cultures, diverse landscapes, and a stunning coastline. It is home to 1185 islands and a fairytale mainland, making it a perfect holiday destination and the best-preserved citadel in the world.

If you visit I would recommend you visit the National Park Brijuni Islands, the beautiful Plitvice Lakes National Park in Lika and the birthplace of Marco Polo – Korcula Island. Of course, you’ll need to visit Dubrovnik with its beautiful baroque architecture and sea of red roofs. It’s often described as a jewel shining in the Adriatic Sea from the 6 th century, protected by walls and by nature.

Split (the second-largest city in Croatia) has a unique charm. It’s a place where you can find cozy terraces built on ruins and where you can relax between history and legends while drinking your coffee at the Diocletian Palace. Zagreb, the capital of Croatia is a beautiful and cultural city filled with open-minded and welcoming people.

  • Check out our post on the most beautiful places to visit in Croatia

5. Turkey – an eternally popular place to holiday in the Eastern part of Europe

beautiful Turkey

10 of the best under-the-radar beaches in Turkey

Turkey offers much more than just cheap package holidays. It’s a treasure of a country overflowing with history, great food, and rich culture, all of these being displayed over amazing backgrounds.

Spread above two continents, Turkey is a colorful mix of philosophies and traditions. With 5000 miles of coastline laid along three different seas, the country connects Europe with Asia, borrowing their traditions and mixing them together.

One of the most beautiful places in Turkey is the Cappadocia region (see above), where the moonscape hills seem to be unreal like a wonder of nature. Istanbul is a memorable city where the East meets the West. It’s famous for its amazing mosques, the Grand Bazaar, rich culture, and stunning architecture.

In such a diverse country there is something for everyone, from beautiful beaches to the archeological sites of Anatolia, from the lively holiday favourite Bodrum to Ephesus which was once the trade centre of the ancient world.

When at Ephesus make sure you see the remains of The Temple of Artemis which was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

  • Check out our post on 20 of the most beautiful places to visit in Turkey

6. Russia – a still secretive but extraordinary place to visit in Eastern Europe

St Basil`s Cathedra Russia

Beautiful Russia

The largest country in the world is also home to some very beautiful scenery. Notable areas are the oldest mountains -Urals and the deeper lake-Baikal.

Land of the titans of literature, Russia is a country that gave birth to so many artists covering all culture’s fields, Russia holds the most important collections of art, fabulous museums, treasured monuments spread all over the Russian territory. It also has some of the finest examples of religious architecture in the world.

It may be still quite a secretive and insular place but it has an extraordinary culture and architecture which could be down to the fact it spans eleven time zones across two continents – Europe and Asia.

  • Also check out our20 Of The Most Beautiful Places To Visit In Russia

7. Romania – home to stunning cities and beautiful natural landscapes

Transylvania Romania

Romania Eastern Europe

Romania landscapes

This beautiful Eastern European country is an underrated gem. Romania is a country crossed by the Carpathian Mountains and bordered by the Black Sea.

It’s also one of the most beautiful countries in Eastern Europe. The most beautiful part of Romania is undeniably the center where Transylvania resides surrounded by mountains.

Also known as the home of Dracula, it’s an amazing place and where you can easily see how it would have inspired Bram Stoker to create the most famous vampire of all time.

Other interesting places to visit in this lovely country are, Sibiu which is the European Capital of Culture, Sighisoara– the best-preserved inhabited citadel, and Brasov which is the cosmopolitan city in the foothills. Bucovina is a very special place where time has stopped. Here you’ll find the most beautiful monasteries in Europe.

Romanian seaside destinations have also evolved in the last few years probably mostly because of the famous beach parties which take place every summer. Well-known DJs play here drawing in crowds from all over the globe.

8. Slovenia – home to beautiful countryside and one of Europe’s most scenic lakes

Lake Bled in Slovenia

Slovenia East Europe

Easily one of the most stunning countries in former Eastern Europe, Slovenia has a population of around two million people. The beautiful Eastern European country has stunning landscapes where entire hills are covered with vineyards and many hectares are covered with thick ancient forest.

With the Julian Alps in the north, the country is a great winter destination but it also makes an excellent budget holiday destination. The Slovenian coast is a slice of unspoilt Mediterranean, full of colourful Italian-style fishing villages, olive groves, and clean, transparent water.

Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia and the largest city in the country, still retains a Roman touch besides many architectural styles that can be found here. UNESCO chose this city to be the 2011 World Book Capital and Maribor will be the European Capital of Culture in 2012.

Some of Slovenia’s most beautiful places to visit include the Rogaska Slatina which is a magical territory known for its thermal water and its relaxing surrounding and Bled, a stylish mountain resort.

Portoroz is the most popular seaside destination and the Postojna cave is an outstanding 20km cave and one of the most amazing sights of natural beauty. Although arguably Slovenia is fast becoming famous for being home to one of the most beautiful lakes in Europe – Lake Bled (pictured above) is one of the most picturesque spots to visit in the whole continent.

9. Estonia – a popular city break destination in Eastern Europe

Estonia - best countries to visit in Eastern Europe

Estonia Beautiful

Estonia has many beautiful areas and is an increasingly popular tourist destination. Tallinn (the capital) is especially very popular for weekend breaks.

It has a special and fun charm with lovely cobbled streets and pretty buildings. The capital is also bounded by 35c defence towers, with an amazing Town Hall. It’s a gothic beauty that amazed the historians who have labelled it as an exceptional construction, comparing it with Palazzo Vechio in Florence.

Estonia countryside is also a paradise for bird watchers. It actually held a record in 1999 for the highest number of bird species seen in a single day (189). With a very interesting traditional culture and exciting architecture, Estonia is a beautiful country and a great travel destination.

10. Macedonia – an up and coming Eastern European gem

Lake Ohrid Macedonia

Macedonia beautiful scenery

This is another very beautiful but very underrated gem. When visiting certain parts of Macedonia, such as Skopje, you will notice a unique mix of modern and ancient architecture.

This part of Eastern Europe has done an amazing job of preserving the old while embracing the new. The best place to see this contrast is on the Skopje Stone Bridge. This structure links the old part of the city to the new.

For those seeking a bit more adventure, Canyon Matka is just 17 km away and is full of caves to explore and beautiful, seemingly untouched nature to take in. Kayak on Matka Lake and Treska Lake and enjoy taking pictures of over 70 species of butterflies.

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Also make sure you pay a visit to Lake Ohrid (pictured above), and the stunning historic town of Ohrid. It’s one of the most seductive destinations in Eastern Europe and easily one of the most photogenic.

11. Ukraine – a large Eastern European country with an intriguing culture and history

Kiev city in Ukraine

Ukraine

Sculpture in Kiev

Ukraine is the second-largest country on the European continent. A good place to start is the Western Ukraine city Lviv. It’s a cultural municipality with a rich history and a beautiful combination of architectural styles. With an impressive historical center, Lviv is a great destination for tourists all over the world, especially history and culture fans.

Beautiful Kiev the stunning and elegant capital and the largest city in Ukraine is a really beautiful place enlightened by its marvelous golden domes, covered by elegant parks and filled with some great restaurants.

The rest of Ukraine is rich in natural resources and beautiful landscapes like Crimea, the Carpathians, the Danube Delta, and the animated Odessa. Thanks to its temperate climate, diverse landforms and its geographical position, Ukraine is a perfect and very affordable travel destination for both winter and summer.

Check out our team’s visit to Chornobyl in Ukraine…

12. Bulgaria – the increasingly popular holiday destination in Eastern Europe

Black Sea Beach Bulgaria

Sozopol in Bulgaria

There are many beautiful places to visit in Bulgaria. This was a country that spent a lot of time in anonymity but in recent years, it has become a popular tourist destination.

Bulgaria is filled with sandy beaches on the Black Sea coast, ski mountain resorts, solid forests, intriguing architecture, great food, and lively nightlife.

Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, is one of the oldest cities in Europe and an important cultural center. The most popular destinations in the country are; Sunny Beach – the largest beach resort with more than 800 hotels along the Black Sea Coast and Varna the lively summer destination, famous for its nightlife.

Rousse is known as “The small Vienna,” Pamporovo is a modern ski resort and Bansko is the best destination for winter holidays.

13. Hungary – a lively capital, stunning architecture, thermal spas, and beautiful countryside

Hungary Budapest

Among the top most beautiful places in Eastern Europe is Hungary and it’s also one of the most popular places to visit, especially beautiful Budapest. This area is famous for its remarkable architecture and visitors enjoy visiting towns filled with architectural wonders such as Szeged and Pécs – here beautiful Art Nouveau buildings are everywhere to enjoy.

Hungary is also the place if you want to fill up on hearty Eastern European cuisine, so definitely don’t leave without trying their Goulash.

For those looking to visit Budapest make sure you pay a visit to the famous thermal baths at least once and also add a cruise on the River Danube and a visit to a cool “Ruin Pub” to your list.

14. Poland – picturesque cities and pristine scenic countryside

Beautiful Poland

Poland Countryside

Poland has certainly had some rocky times in the past, but today is known as being a safe and beautiful country. It’s also an increasingly much-loved destination with visitors lapping up the beauty of the stunning historic cities of Krakow and Gda?sk and the intriguing and dynamic city of Warsaw.

Also, don’t forget their truly stunning mostly unspoiled countryside and their coastline too. Polish beaches are both safe and beautiful and make a great base for a family holiday or a weekend away with friends.

When you visit Poland, you will be in the 8th largest economy in the EU and slap bang in the middle of central Europe (although it was once technically classed as Eastern Europe).

Poland is an intriguing, fun, and friendly country to visit and offers everything you could want in a travel destination from towering mountain ranges to an impressive coastline and vast beautiful lakes and forests.

15. Georgia – diverse landscapes, cities and culture

Georgia Eastern Europe

Georgia Eastern Europe

Formally part of the Soviet Union, Georgia is now a proud and beautiful country and when visiting Georgia, I think you’ll be quite taken with its awe-inspiring and pristine landscapes. The Caucasian Mountain Range runs through this illustrious part of Eastern Europe and its unique landscapes are also dotted with ancient watchtowers proving that war was, at one time, a very real problem in this area.

While staying in Georgia, you must check out its capital Tbilisi. This small city is one of the few remaining cliff-side cities accessible to tourists but is home to a stunning cobblestoned Old Town combined with exceptional dining, and many modern conveniences you would expect from a travel destination.

Other country highlights include its wonderful Black Sea beaches, Vardzia, a vast 12th-century cave monastery, and the ancient wine-growing region of Kakheti.

16. Moldova – wonderful forests, rocky hills, and miles of vineyards

Moldova - beautiful places to visit in Moldova

Moldova Countryside

This is another former Soviet republic country which has now gained its own independence. In Moldova, you will see plenty of cultural influences from a range of different cultures. As it was once a part of Romania, as well as the Soviet Union, the vast majority of the city still depicts both entities. However, Moldova has become a hub for change and embracing modern amenities.

Trailblazers and adventure hunters tend to gravitate to Moldova primarily due to its remote location. However, once they arrive, they are greeted with some of the best hospitality in this part of Europe and a genuinely warm welcome, I love this country even in spite of it supposedly being one of the unhappiest countries in the world!

The stunning unspoiled landscapes, its many vineyards, and beautiful architecture definitely helped of course.

Make sure you include a visit to its intriguing capital Chisinau (which is filled with a mix of Soviet-style architecture and neoclassical landmarks), Tipova Monastery and its famous wine regions Nistreana, known for its fantastic red wine and Codru which is blessed with some of the world’s largest wine cellars.

17. Lithuania – seamlessly blends the old and the new

Lithuania Countryside

Lithuania - beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

Visitors to Lithuania often find themselves in the middle of Vilnius, the capital city. This large and beautiful historic city is home to a unique blend of cobblestone streets, ancient churches, and young professionals embracing the enjoyment of working in up-and-coming companies. Trendy bars and cafes dot the capital and somehow blend seamlessly with Lithuania’s old-world feel.

Although the capital city is not the only destination I’d recommend visiting in Lithuania. Other fantastic places to explore include the Gediminas Castle Tower, The Hill of Crosses, and the Ruins of Memel Castle also take time to explore the natural pristine landscapes such as the famous Curonian Spit a very long sand-dune spit that separates the Curonian Lagoon from the Baltic Sea coast.

The beaches are also long, wide and sandy and unspoilt, the forests are thick and dense and the pubs offer a traditional welcome and often medieval-style mead – wonderful!

18. Belarus – a mix of elegant architecture, Soviet-era buildings, and trendy hotspots

Beautiful Belarus

Minsk - best places to visit in Eastern Europe

Belarus Countryside

Belarus has not always been a must-see area of Eastern Europe, political dissent was once very much alive and well in this part of Europe but has since died down.

Today, Belarus embraces incoming visitors with open arms and it’s actually becoming quite a trendy but still yet mostly undiscovered European destination.

The most populated city and the country’s capital – Minsk – is mostly where it’s all at. This wonderful city is home to an eclectic combination of elegant historic architecture, Soviet-era buildings, and fashionable and trendy hotspots.

The other the top things to see in Belarus includes Mir Castle with its impeccably preserved architecture, Nyasvizh, another amazing example of immense castle preservation, and Brest with its notable and epically depicted WWII memorials.

There is much to see and do in Belarus and the locals are happy to help you along your way. Belarus is increasingly becoming a fun and progressive area to visit in Eastern Europe.

19. Bosnia – truly beautiful natural scenery which is drawing increasingly more visitors

Bosnia Countryside

Bosnia Countryside

Sadly this is another country with a very troubled past and the scars from the infamous civil war of the 1990s can still be seen in Bosnia. But today but this area of Eastern Europe has seen a resurgence of new life come into the country mostly via tourism and the never give up attitude of locals.

Visitors to Bosnia can enjoy walking amongst the ruins of ancient buildings and villages and marveling at the beautiful waterfalls, mountains, vast lakes, and other natural landscapes in all their craggy glory. Winter visitors will also have the chance to enjoy amazing skiing without the high prices of other ski destinations, so Bosnia is not just very beautiful but will offer a bargain trip as well.

Don’t leave without paying at least one visit to the national capital Sarajevo which is home to a well preserved old quarter, and important landmarks such as the 16th-century Gazi Husrev-bey Mosque and the Ottoman-era Latin Bridge (where Franz Ferdinand was assassinated which started World War I).

20. Slovakia – a beautiful place to visit in Eastern Europe which is perfect for outdoor adventures

Slovakia - most beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

Slovakia - best places to visit in Eastern Europe

Although this among the smallest destinations in what was formally known as Eastern Europe, Slovakia – a landlocked country located right in the heart of Europe – is perfectly formed and offers everything a traveler could want in one neat package.

The unique atmosphere within the country is felt through the hospitality of locals, but also can be seen in its bustling streets and traditional folk culture.

Historical monuments, majestic castles, stunning architecture, and national treasures have been perfectly preserved so future generations can enjoy the remarkable culture of this country.

Visitors can hike, try water sports, or enjoy the truly stunning natural scenery of this unique and remarkably beautiful land. Whether you want the excitement of the big city (try Bratislava for its splendid old town and traditional pubs) or are looking for a more outdoor-focused trip, Slovakia definitely offers it all!

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With itchy feet, an inquisitive nature and an ardent wanderlust, Emma Clair has always been a traveller at heart. Hailing from the Emerald Isle she calls a small coastal town near Dublin home, but has lived in a few countries including Saigon, Vietnam where she resided for over a year. She counts supping on Bloody Marys on a rooftop in Manhattan, downing Singapore slings at the Raffles Hotel, daring a paraglide on the Grand Cayman, spending an exotic Christmas in Malaysia and exploring the Angkor Wat, Cambodia as her all time favourite travel moments. Although, she’ll always have a special place in her heart for the city where she makes her annual pilgrimages – Paris, her true city of lights.

Top 20 Most Beautiful Countries to Visit in Eastern Europe

While it’s hard to escape the crowds in West Europe, many countries in what was formally known as Eastern Europe are often overlooked as a travel destination. Although it’s an incredibly interesting part of Europe and I personally believe Eastern Europe has a lot to offer visitors and it’s also home to some of the most beautiful countries in the world.

From the gorgeous sandy beaches of Bulgaria to the baroque architecture of historic Dubrovnik, here are my choices for 20 of the best and most beautiful countries to visit in Eastern Europe…

1. Montenegro – a beautiful underrated gem in Eastern Europe

Kotor - beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

Montenegro - beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

There is no other place so tiny and filled with so many naturally beautiful areas like Montenegro. Called “the hidden pearl of the Mediterranean” it’s easily one of the most beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe.

Montenegro is divided into three regions – the coastal region in the west which has the beautiful Riviera (Ulcinj and Budva), the central region with astonishing parks and the high mountainous area.

The first ecological state in the world, Montenegro has the second largest canyon (Tara), the most beautiful beach of the old continent in 1905-The Slavic Beach and “the mosaic-beach” of Becic. It is also home to the biggest bird reservation in Europe and many other gorgeous and unique spots. Blessed with a wild beauty, the state that gained its independence on 3 June 2006 has become a highly regarded travel destination.

Don’t leave without visiting the truly incredible city of Kotor (pictured above) located Dalmatian coast which is home to such spectacular scenery and architecture it’s been classed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the wonderful old town and then take the steps up towards the Castle of San Giovani for stunning views of the bay.

2. Czech Republic – one of the best and most popular places to visit in Eastern Europe

Czech Republic

Prague Monastery

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic sits in the heart of Europe and it’s a stunning place adorned with culture, history, and legends. It also has one of the most beautiful and romantic capitals in Europe. Prague is a popular destination for city breaks and boasts some of the best beer and most beautiful women in the world.

Further afield the entire Czech Republic is sprinkled by castles, from Hluboka Castle – the first Gothic Castle in the world (1250), to Cesky Sternberk Castle – the best-preserved Bohemian Palace. The imposing Mikulov Castle is a fine example of Baroque architecture and the Svihov Castle has a distinctive Renaissance feel.

You’ll also find great mountain areas, coquette villages, a hectic history and one of the richest cultures on the continent. The intriguing Republic of Czech is undeniably the most attractive country in Eastern Europe and in my view one of the most elegant.

3. Latvia – a stunning underrated country in Eastern Europe with a truly beautiful capital

Riga Square Latvia

Beautiful Riga Street

Sunset Liepaja Beach

Latvia is truly a beautiful underrated gem and one of my favourite countries to visit in Eastern Europe.

The locals are populated with half Russians and half native Latvians and the Latvians are very welcoming and friendly and often have a unique view on life even in spite of the very tough times they’ve been through in the past (check out the very moving Occupation Museum in Riga to find out more).

Nature and nature-centered and holistic rituals are also extremely important to their way of life which will also be very evident on your visit.

Latvia is also a pristinely beautiful place with many untouched forests and countryside. When visiting don’t miss their stunning capital Riga which is also known as the ‘Pearl of the Baltics,’ Liepaja the funky and intriguing port city blessed with a wide sandy beach and the dark tourist attraction Karosta Prison.

4. Croatia – easily one of the most beautiful countries in Eastern Europe

Dubrovnik in Croatia

Brela Beach Croatia

Croatia is a lovely country in South-East Europe. It has a thousand years of history and mixed cultures, diverse landscapes, and a stunning coastline. It is home to 1185 islands and a fairytale mainland, making it a perfect holiday destination and the best-preserved citadel in the world.

If you visit I would recommend you visit the National Park Brijuni Islands, the beautiful Plitvice Lakes National Park in Lika and the birthplace of Marco Polo – Korcula Island. Of course, you’ll need to visit Dubrovnik with its beautiful baroque architecture and sea of red roofs. It’s often described as a jewel shining in the Adriatic Sea from the 6 th century, protected by walls and by nature.

Split (the second-largest city in Croatia) has a unique charm. It’s a place where you can find cozy terraces built on ruins and where you can relax between history and legends while drinking your coffee at the Diocletian Palace. Zagreb, the capital of Croatia is a beautiful and cultural city filled with open-minded and welcoming people.

  • Check out our post on the most beautiful places to visit in Croatia

5. Turkey – an eternally popular place to holiday in the Eastern part of Europe

beautiful Turkey

10 of the best under-the-radar beaches in Turkey

Turkey offers much more than just cheap package holidays. It’s a treasure of a country overflowing with history, great food, and rich culture, all of these being displayed over amazing backgrounds.

Spread above two continents, Turkey is a colorful mix of philosophies and traditions. With 5000 miles of coastline laid along three different seas, the country connects Europe with Asia, borrowing their traditions and mixing them together.

One of the most beautiful places in Turkey is the Cappadocia region (see above), where the moonscape hills seem to be unreal like a wonder of nature. Istanbul is a memorable city where the East meets the West. It’s famous for its amazing mosques, the Grand Bazaar, rich culture, and stunning architecture.

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In such a diverse country there is something for everyone, from beautiful beaches to the archeological sites of Anatolia, from the lively holiday favourite Bodrum to Ephesus which was once the trade centre of the ancient world.

When at Ephesus make sure you see the remains of The Temple of Artemis which was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

  • Check out our post on 20 of the most beautiful places to visit in Turkey

6. Russia – a still secretive but extraordinary place to visit in Eastern Europe

St Basil`s Cathedra Russia

Beautiful Russia

The largest country in the world is also home to some very beautiful scenery. Notable areas are the oldest mountains -Urals and the deeper lake-Baikal.

Land of the titans of literature, Russia is a country that gave birth to so many artists covering all culture’s fields, Russia holds the most important collections of art, fabulous museums, treasured monuments spread all over the Russian territory. It also has some of the finest examples of religious architecture in the world.

It may be still quite a secretive and insular place but it has an extraordinary culture and architecture which could be down to the fact it spans eleven time zones across two continents – Europe and Asia.

  • Also check out our20 Of The Most Beautiful Places To Visit In Russia

7. Romania – home to stunning cities and beautiful natural landscapes

Transylvania Romania

Romania Eastern Europe

Romania landscapes

This beautiful Eastern European country is an underrated gem. Romania is a country crossed by the Carpathian Mountains and bordered by the Black Sea.

It’s also one of the most beautiful countries in Eastern Europe. The most beautiful part of Romania is undeniably the center where Transylvania resides surrounded by mountains.

Also known as the home of Dracula, it’s an amazing place and where you can easily see how it would have inspired Bram Stoker to create the most famous vampire of all time.

Other interesting places to visit in this lovely country are, Sibiu which is the European Capital of Culture, Sighisoara– the best-preserved inhabited citadel, and Brasov which is the cosmopolitan city in the foothills. Bucovina is a very special place where time has stopped. Here you’ll find the most beautiful monasteries in Europe.

Romanian seaside destinations have also evolved in the last few years probably mostly because of the famous beach parties which take place every summer. Well-known DJs play here drawing in crowds from all over the globe.

8. Slovenia – home to beautiful countryside and one of Europe’s most scenic lakes

Lake Bled in Slovenia

Slovenia East Europe

Easily one of the most stunning countries in former Eastern Europe, Slovenia has a population of around two million people. The beautiful Eastern European country has stunning landscapes where entire hills are covered with vineyards and many hectares are covered with thick ancient forest.

With the Julian Alps in the north, the country is a great winter destination but it also makes an excellent budget holiday destination. The Slovenian coast is a slice of unspoilt Mediterranean, full of colourful Italian-style fishing villages, olive groves, and clean, transparent water.

Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia and the largest city in the country, still retains a Roman touch besides many architectural styles that can be found here. UNESCO chose this city to be the 2011 World Book Capital and Maribor will be the European Capital of Culture in 2012.

Some of Slovenia’s most beautiful places to visit include the Rogaska Slatina which is a magical territory known for its thermal water and its relaxing surrounding and Bled, a stylish mountain resort.

Portoroz is the most popular seaside destination and the Postojna cave is an outstanding 20km cave and one of the most amazing sights of natural beauty. Although arguably Slovenia is fast becoming famous for being home to one of the most beautiful lakes in Europe – Lake Bled (pictured above) is one of the most picturesque spots to visit in the whole continent.

9. Estonia – a popular city break destination in Eastern Europe

Estonia - best countries to visit in Eastern Europe

Estonia Beautiful

Estonia has many beautiful areas and is an increasingly popular tourist destination. Tallinn (the capital) is especially very popular for weekend breaks.

It has a special and fun charm with lovely cobbled streets and pretty buildings. The capital is also bounded by 35c defence towers, with an amazing Town Hall. It’s a gothic beauty that amazed the historians who have labelled it as an exceptional construction, comparing it with Palazzo Vechio in Florence.

Estonia countryside is also a paradise for bird watchers. It actually held a record in 1999 for the highest number of bird species seen in a single day (189). With a very interesting traditional culture and exciting architecture, Estonia is a beautiful country and a great travel destination.

10. Macedonia – an up and coming Eastern European gem

Lake Ohrid Macedonia

Macedonia beautiful scenery

This is another very beautiful but very underrated gem. When visiting certain parts of Macedonia, such as Skopje, you will notice a unique mix of modern and ancient architecture.

This part of Eastern Europe has done an amazing job of preserving the old while embracing the new. The best place to see this contrast is on the Skopje Stone Bridge. This structure links the old part of the city to the new.

For those seeking a bit more adventure, Canyon Matka is just 17 km away and is full of caves to explore and beautiful, seemingly untouched nature to take in. Kayak on Matka Lake and Treska Lake and enjoy taking pictures of over 70 species of butterflies.

Also make sure you pay a visit to Lake Ohrid (pictured above), and the stunning historic town of Ohrid. It’s one of the most seductive destinations in Eastern Europe and easily one of the most photogenic.

11. Ukraine – a large Eastern European country with an intriguing culture and history

Kiev city in Ukraine

Ukraine

Sculpture in Kiev

Ukraine is the second-largest country on the European continent. A good place to start is the Western Ukraine city Lviv. It’s a cultural municipality with a rich history and a beautiful combination of architectural styles. With an impressive historical center, Lviv is a great destination for tourists all over the world, especially history and culture fans.

Beautiful Kiev the stunning and elegant capital and the largest city in Ukraine is a really beautiful place enlightened by its marvelous golden domes, covered by elegant parks and filled with some great restaurants.

The rest of Ukraine is rich in natural resources and beautiful landscapes like Crimea, the Carpathians, the Danube Delta, and the animated Odessa. Thanks to its temperate climate, diverse landforms and its geographical position, Ukraine is a perfect and very affordable travel destination for both winter and summer.

Check out our team’s visit to Chornobyl in Ukraine…

12. Bulgaria – the increasingly popular holiday destination in Eastern Europe

Black Sea Beach Bulgaria

Sozopol in Bulgaria

There are many beautiful places to visit in Bulgaria. This was a country that spent a lot of time in anonymity but in recent years, it has become a popular tourist destination.

Bulgaria is filled with sandy beaches on the Black Sea coast, ski mountain resorts, solid forests, intriguing architecture, great food, and lively nightlife.

Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, is one of the oldest cities in Europe and an important cultural center. The most popular destinations in the country are; Sunny Beach – the largest beach resort with more than 800 hotels along the Black Sea Coast and Varna the lively summer destination, famous for its nightlife.

Rousse is known as “The small Vienna,” Pamporovo is a modern ski resort and Bansko is the best destination for winter holidays.

13. Hungary – a lively capital, stunning architecture, thermal spas, and beautiful countryside

Hungary Budapest

Among the top most beautiful places in Eastern Europe is Hungary and it’s also one of the most popular places to visit, especially beautiful Budapest. This area is famous for its remarkable architecture and visitors enjoy visiting towns filled with architectural wonders such as Szeged and Pécs – here beautiful Art Nouveau buildings are everywhere to enjoy.

Hungary is also the place if you want to fill up on hearty Eastern European cuisine, so definitely don’t leave without trying their Goulash.

For those looking to visit Budapest make sure you pay a visit to the famous thermal baths at least once and also add a cruise on the River Danube and a visit to a cool “Ruin Pub” to your list.

14. Poland – picturesque cities and pristine scenic countryside

Beautiful Poland

Poland Countryside

Poland has certainly had some rocky times in the past, but today is known as being a safe and beautiful country. It’s also an increasingly much-loved destination with visitors lapping up the beauty of the stunning historic cities of Krakow and Gda?sk and the intriguing and dynamic city of Warsaw.

Also, don’t forget their truly stunning mostly unspoiled countryside and their coastline too. Polish beaches are both safe and beautiful and make a great base for a family holiday or a weekend away with friends.

When you visit Poland, you will be in the 8th largest economy in the EU and slap bang in the middle of central Europe (although it was once technically classed as Eastern Europe).

Poland is an intriguing, fun, and friendly country to visit and offers everything you could want in a travel destination from towering mountain ranges to an impressive coastline and vast beautiful lakes and forests.

15. Georgia – diverse landscapes, cities and culture

Georgia Eastern Europe

Georgia Eastern Europe

Formally part of the Soviet Union, Georgia is now a proud and beautiful country and when visiting Georgia, I think you’ll be quite taken with its awe-inspiring and pristine landscapes. The Caucasian Mountain Range runs through this illustrious part of Eastern Europe and its unique landscapes are also dotted with ancient watchtowers proving that war was, at one time, a very real problem in this area.

While staying in Georgia, you must check out its capital Tbilisi. This small city is one of the few remaining cliff-side cities accessible to tourists but is home to a stunning cobblestoned Old Town combined with exceptional dining, and many modern conveniences you would expect from a travel destination.

Other country highlights include its wonderful Black Sea beaches, Vardzia, a vast 12th-century cave monastery, and the ancient wine-growing region of Kakheti.

16. Moldova – wonderful forests, rocky hills, and miles of vineyards

Moldova - beautiful places to visit in Moldova

Moldova Countryside

This is another former Soviet republic country which has now gained its own independence. In Moldova, you will see plenty of cultural influences from a range of different cultures. As it was once a part of Romania, as well as the Soviet Union, the vast majority of the city still depicts both entities. However, Moldova has become a hub for change and embracing modern amenities.

Trailblazers and adventure hunters tend to gravitate to Moldova primarily due to its remote location. However, once they arrive, they are greeted with some of the best hospitality in this part of Europe and a genuinely warm welcome, I love this country even in spite of it supposedly being one of the unhappiest countries in the world!

The stunning unspoiled landscapes, its many vineyards, and beautiful architecture definitely helped of course.

Make sure you include a visit to its intriguing capital Chisinau (which is filled with a mix of Soviet-style architecture and neoclassical landmarks), Tipova Monastery and its famous wine regions Nistreana, known for its fantastic red wine and Codru which is blessed with some of the world’s largest wine cellars.

17. Lithuania – seamlessly blends the old and the new

Lithuania Countryside

Lithuania - beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

Visitors to Lithuania often find themselves in the middle of Vilnius, the capital city. This large and beautiful historic city is home to a unique blend of cobblestone streets, ancient churches, and young professionals embracing the enjoyment of working in up-and-coming companies. Trendy bars and cafes dot the capital and somehow blend seamlessly with Lithuania’s old-world feel.

Although the capital city is not the only destination I’d recommend visiting in Lithuania. Other fantastic places to explore include the Gediminas Castle Tower, The Hill of Crosses, and the Ruins of Memel Castle also take time to explore the natural pristine landscapes such as the famous Curonian Spit a very long sand-dune spit that separates the Curonian Lagoon from the Baltic Sea coast.

The beaches are also long, wide and sandy and unspoilt, the forests are thick and dense and the pubs offer a traditional welcome and often medieval-style mead – wonderful!

18. Belarus – a mix of elegant architecture, Soviet-era buildings, and trendy hotspots

Beautiful Belarus

Minsk - best places to visit in Eastern Europe

Belarus Countryside

Belarus has not always been a must-see area of Eastern Europe, political dissent was once very much alive and well in this part of Europe but has since died down.

Today, Belarus embraces incoming visitors with open arms and it’s actually becoming quite a trendy but still yet mostly undiscovered European destination.

The most populated city and the country’s capital – Minsk – is mostly where it’s all at. This wonderful city is home to an eclectic combination of elegant historic architecture, Soviet-era buildings, and fashionable and trendy hotspots.

The other the top things to see in Belarus includes Mir Castle with its impeccably preserved architecture, Nyasvizh, another amazing example of immense castle preservation, and Brest with its notable and epically depicted WWII memorials.

There is much to see and do in Belarus and the locals are happy to help you along your way. Belarus is increasingly becoming a fun and progressive area to visit in Eastern Europe.

19. Bosnia – truly beautiful natural scenery which is drawing increasingly more visitors

Bosnia Countryside

Bosnia Countryside

Sadly this is another country with a very troubled past and the scars from the infamous civil war of the 1990s can still be seen in Bosnia. But today but this area of Eastern Europe has seen a resurgence of new life come into the country mostly via tourism and the never give up attitude of locals.

Visitors to Bosnia can enjoy walking amongst the ruins of ancient buildings and villages and marveling at the beautiful waterfalls, mountains, vast lakes, and other natural landscapes in all their craggy glory. Winter visitors will also have the chance to enjoy amazing skiing without the high prices of other ski destinations, so Bosnia is not just very beautiful but will offer a bargain trip as well.

Don’t leave without paying at least one visit to the national capital Sarajevo which is home to a well preserved old quarter, and important landmarks such as the 16th-century Gazi Husrev-bey Mosque and the Ottoman-era Latin Bridge (where Franz Ferdinand was assassinated which started World War I).

20. Slovakia – a beautiful place to visit in Eastern Europe which is perfect for outdoor adventures

Slovakia - most beautiful places to visit in Eastern Europe

Slovakia - best places to visit in Eastern Europe

Although this among the smallest destinations in what was formally known as Eastern Europe, Slovakia – a landlocked country located right in the heart of Europe – is perfectly formed and offers everything a traveler could want in one neat package.

The unique atmosphere within the country is felt through the hospitality of locals, but also can be seen in its bustling streets and traditional folk culture.

Historical monuments, majestic castles, stunning architecture, and national treasures have been perfectly preserved so future generations can enjoy the remarkable culture of this country.

Visitors can hike, try water sports, or enjoy the truly stunning natural scenery of this unique and remarkably beautiful land. Whether you want the excitement of the big city (try Bratislava for its splendid old town and traditional pubs) or are looking for a more outdoor-focused trip, Slovakia definitely offers it all!

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With itchy feet, an inquisitive nature and an ardent wanderlust, Emma Clair has always been a traveller at heart. Hailing from the Emerald Isle she calls a small coastal town near Dublin home, but has lived in a few countries including Saigon, Vietnam where she resided for over a year. She counts supping on Bloody Marys on a rooftop in Manhattan, downing Singapore slings at the Raffles Hotel, daring a paraglide on the Grand Cayman, spending an exotic Christmas in Malaysia and exploring the Angkor Wat, Cambodia as her all time favourite travel moments. Although, she’ll always have a special place in her heart for the city where she makes her annual pilgrimages – Paris, her true city of lights.

Source https://www.touropia.com/best-places-to-visit-in-eastern-europe/

Source https://globalgrasshopper.com/destinations/europe/10-beautiful-countries-eastern-europe/

Source https://globalgrasshopper.com/destinations/europe/10-beautiful-countries-eastern-europe/#:~:text=Czech%20Republic%20%E2%80%93%20one%20of%20the%20best%20and,the%20most%20beautiful%20and%20romantic%20capitals%20in%20Europe.

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