Albania, located on the Balkan Peninsula in Southeastern Europe, is a small country with Adriatic and Ionian coasts and an interior crisscrossed by the Albanian Alps. Many castles and archaeological sites may be found throughout the country.
Tirana, Albania’s capital, is recognized for its vibrant Ottoman, Fascist, and Soviet architecture. Skanderbeg Square, named for an equestrian statue of a national hero, is the city’s center point, surrounded by pastel buildings. The modernist National History Museum, on the square’s north end, covers ancient times through Communist control and the anti-Communist events of the 1990’s.
Andorra is a tiny, self-governing principality in the Pyrenees mountains, sandwiched between France and Spain. It’s famed for its ski resorts and tax-free shopping because to its tax-haven status.
Andorra la Vella is the country’s capital. On Meritxell Avenue, there are boutiques and jewelers, as well as various retail centers. The Romanesque Santa Coloma Church, with its round bell tower, is located in the old quarter, Barri Antic.
Another must see is the baroque altarpieces in the 12th-century Sant Esteve church. Casa de la Vall, a former parliamentary seat built in 1580, has murals from the 16th and 17th centuries. Vallnord has resorts with winter sports tracks as well as a cycling park nearby.
Armenia is a country in the hilly Caucasus area between Asia and Europe, and a former Soviet republic. Religious buildings such as the Greco-Roman Temple of Garni and the 4th-century Etchmiadzin Cathedral, the Armenian Church’s headquarters, distinguish it as one of the oldest Christian civilizations. The pilgrimage location of Khor Virap Monastery is located near Mount Ararat, a dormant volcano located just beyond the Turkish border.
The capital of Armenia, Yerevan, is characterized by massive Soviet-era architecture. Its main road is dominated by the Matenadaran library, which has thousands of ancient Greek and Armenian manuscripts.
Republic Square, with its melodic water fountains and colonnaded government buildings, is the city’s heart. On the square’s eastern side, the Armenian History Museum, built in the 1920s, houses ancient artifacts like as a circa-3500 B.C. leather shoe.
Austria, officially the Republic of Austria, is a landlocked country in Central Europe’s southernmost region, bordering the Eastern Alps. Vienna, Austria’s capital and largest city, is one of nine federated states that make up the country.
Vienna, Austria’s capital, is located on the Danube River in the country’s east. Residents such as Mozart, Beethoven, and Sigmund Freud molded the city’s cultural and intellectual history.
The city is also notable for its Imperial palaces, such as Schönbrunn, the summer seat of the Habsburgs. Historic and contemporary buildings in the MuseumsQuartier district house works by Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt, and other artists.
The Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains, which span Asia and Europe, surround Azerbaijan, the nation and former Soviet republic.
Baku, Azerbaijan’s capital and commercial centre, is a low-lying city with a Caspian Sea shoreline. The Palace of the Shirvanshahs, a large royal complex, and the renowned stone Maiden Tower are among the city’s many attractions.
Belarus is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, formally known as the Republic of Belarus and traditionally known as Byelorussia.
Minsk is the capital city and was first mentioned in history in 1067, when it was listed as a provincial city within the Principality of Polotsk. The Red Church, also known as the Church of Saints Simon and Helena, is a Roman Catholic church in Minsk, Belarus, located on Independence Square.
The National Academic Grand Opera and Ballet Theatre of the Republic of Belarus is located in a park in the Trinity Hill district.
Belgium is a country in Western Europe famed for its medieval towns, Renaissance architecture, and as the European Union and NATO headquarters. To the north, Dutch-speaking Flanders, French-speaking Wallonia to the south, and a German-speaking community to the east, the country is divided into several areas.
Brussels, the bilingual capital, has majestic guildhalls on Grand-Place and exquisite art nouveau structures. The City is a municipality made up of the old town’s core. The Bois de la Cambre/Ter Kamerenbos is the city’s primary park, located to the south of the city.
Bosnia and Herzegovina is a country in southeastern Europe located on the Balkan Peninsula. The rocky Dinaric Alps, as well as historic villages, rivers, and lakes, dot the landscape.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s capital, is a tiny city nestled between the Dinaric Alps and the Miljacka River. The Sarajevo Museum 1878–1918 recounts the 1914 assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, which launched World War I. The Ottoman-era Gazi Husrev-bey Mosque is a landmark in the old quarter, Baarija.
Bulgaria is a Balkan country with a diversified landscape that includes the Black Sea coast, a mountainous interior, and rivers such as the Danube. It boasts a rich heritage of traditional dance, music, clothing, and crafts, and is a cultural melting pot with Greek, Slavic, Ottoman, and Persian influences.
Sofia is Bulgaria’s capital city. It’s located in the country’s west, beneath the Vitosha Mountain. The city’s landmarks depict more than 2,000 years of history, including occupation by the Greeks, Romans, Ottomans, and Soviets.
The frescoes of the medieval Boyana Church date from the 13th century. St. George Rotunda Church, built by the Romans in the 4th century, includes medieval and Ottoman decorations dating from the 10th century.
Croatia, formally the Republic of Croatia, is a republic on the Adriatic Sea that is at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe.
Zagreb, Croatia’s northern city, is known for its Austro-Hungarian architecture from the 18th and 19th centuries. Upper Town is home to the Gothic, twin-spired Zagreb Cathedral and the colorfully tiled roofed 13th-century St. Mark’s Church. Tkalieva Street, which is packed with outdoor cafes, is close by. Lower Town is home to Ban Jelai, the major square, as well as stores, museums, and parks.
Cyprus is an island country in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, formally known as the Republic of Cyprus.
Nicosia, also known as Lefkosia, is Cyprus’s divided capital. The Cyprus Museum, on the Greek side of the border, houses Neolithic to Byzantine archaeological artifacts, notably the Aphrodite of Soloi statue. The Famagusta, Kyrenia, and Paphos gates are among the 16th-century Venetian walls that surround the old city. A marble mausoleum is behind the walls next to the 19th-century Faneromeni Church.
The Czech Republic, originally known as Bohemia and recognized by its short-form moniker Czechia, is a landlocked country in Central Europe.
The Vltava River runs through Prague, the Czech Republic’s capital. It’s known as “the City of a Hundred Spires” because of its Old Town Square, which features beautiful baroque structures, Gothic churches, and the ancient Astronomical Clock, which puts on an animated hourly performance. The pedestrian Charles Bridge, which opened in 1402, is decorated with statues of Catholic saints.
The Jutland Peninsula and various islands make up Denmark, a Scandinavian country. The resund bridge connects it to Sweden, which is nearby.
Royal palaces and the colorful Nyhavn port, as well as the Tivoli amusement park and the famed “Little Mermaid” monument, can all be found in Copenhagen, the country’s capital. Odense, the hometown of writer Hans Christian Andersen. There is the H. C. Andersens House museum dedicated to his life in the city center.
Estonia is a Northern European country that borders the Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Finland. Its diversified terrain includes rocky beaches, old-growth woodland, and numerous lakes, with over 1,500 islands. It is peppered with castles, churches, and hilltop strongholds, and was once part of the Soviet Union.
Tallinn, the country’s capital, is the country’s cultural center. It has a walled, cobblestoned Old Town with cafes and shops, as well as the 15th-century defense tower Kiek in de Kök. Tallinn’s Gothic Town Hall, which was built in the 13th century and has a 64-meter-high tower, is located in the city’s historic main square. St. Nicholas Church, a 13th-century monument with religious art, is a must-see.
The Faroe Islands are a self-governing archipelago that is part of Denmark’s Kingdom. It consists of 18 rugged, volcanic islands in the North Atlantic Ocean between Iceland and Norway, connected by road tunnels, ferries, causeways, and bridges. The islands’ mountains, valleys, grassy heathland, and sheer coastline cliffs, which are home to thousands of seabirds, attract hikers and birdwatchers.
The capital of the Faroe Islands is Tórshavn, which is located on Streymoy Island. It’s famed for its old town, Tinganes, which sits on a narrow peninsula and is filled with wooden turf-roofed cottages. Tórshavn Cathedral, which was restored in the 19th century, it’s close by Niels Finsens gta, the major shopping street, is lined with local boutiques. The Nordic House cultural center, located to the north, hosts theater, dance, and music acts in a modern setting.
Finland is a Nordic country bordered by Sweden, Norway, and Russia.
Helsinki, the capital, is situated on a peninsula with surrounding islands in the Baltic Sea. The 18th-century coastal fortification Suomenlinna, the trendy Design District, and a variety of museums can all be found in Helsinki. The Northern Lights can be viewed in the Arctic Lapland province of Finland, which is a large wilderness including national parks and ski resorts.
France contains historic cities, mountain villages, and Mediterranean beaches throughout Western Europe.
The capital city, Paris, is known for its fashion houses, classical art museums such as the Louvre, and landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower. Wines and exquisite cuisine are also well-known in the country. The prehistoric cave drawings of Lascaux, Lyon’s Roman theater, and Versailles’ immense Palace testament to its rich history.
Georgia, a former Soviet republic at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, is home to Caucasus Mountain settlements and Black Sea beaches. Vardzia, a large cave monastery originating from the 12th century, and Kakheti, an old wine-growing region, are both famous.
Tbilisi, the capital, is famed for its unique architecture and mazelike, cobblestone alleyways. Eastern Orthodox churches, opulent Art Nouveau buildings, and Soviet Modernist constructions are among the city’s eclectic architecture. Narikala, a restored 4th-century fortification, and Kartlis Deda, a renowned statue of the “Mother of Georgia,” loom above it all.
Germany is a country in Western Europe with a landscape of woods, rivers, mountain ranges, and beaches on the North Sea. Its history spans over two millennia.
Its capital, Berlin, was founded in the 13th century. The city’s Holocaust memorial and the graffitied ruins of the Berlin Wall serve as reminders of the city’s stormy 20th-century history. Its 18th-century Brandenburg Gate, which was divided during the Cold War, has become a symbol of reconciliation. The city is also known for its art scene and modern landmarks such as the 1963-built gold-colored, swoop-roofed Berliner Philharmonie.
Oktoberfest and beer halls, such as the 16th-century Hofbräuhaus, are well-known in Munich. The European Central Bank is located in Frankfurt, which is known for its skyscrapers.
On Spain’s south coast, Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory and a headland. The Rock of Gibraltar, a 426-meter-high limestone ridge, dominates the landscape.
The outpost was first populated by the Moors in the Middle Ages and afterwards ruled by Spain before being given to the British in 1713. The ruins of a 14th-century Moorish castle and the 18th-century Great Siege Tunnels, which were expanded during WWII, are among the layers of fortifications.
Greece is a country in southeast Europe with thousands of islands scattered over the Aegean and Ionian oceans. It is often referred to as the cradle of Western civilization because of its historical significance.
The Acropolis citadel with the Parthenon temple, built in the 5th century B.C., is still standing in Athens, the country’s capital. From the black sands of Santorini to the party resorts of Mykonos, Greece is recognized for its beaches.
Greenland is the world’s largest island, located east of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, between the Arctic and Atlantic oceans. Greenland is a self-governing territory within Denmark’s realm.
The capital of Greenland, Nuuk, is a small town on the country’s southwest coast. Waterfalls, humpback whales, and icebergs can all be found in its vast fjord system. Against the backdrop of Sermitsiaq mountain, the shoreline is lined with brightly colored buildings. Mummies and Inuit skin boats are on show in the Greenland National Museum, while local artwork is on display at the Nuuk Art Museum. Films, concerts, and art are available at the Katuaq cultural center.
Hungary is a landlocked Central European country. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and the European Union are all members of them.
Budapest is the country’s capital. Budapest connects the steep Buda area with the flat Pest district via the 19th-century Chain Bridge. The Budapest History Museum covers city life from Roman times forward, and a funicular goes up Castle Hill to Buda’s Old Town. The 13th-century Matthias Church and the turrets of the Fishermen’s Bastion, which offer magnificent views, are located on Trinity Square.
The stunning scenery of Iceland, a Nordic island nation, is marked by volcanoes, geysers, hot springs, and lava fields. The national parks of Vatnajökull and Snfellsjökull protect massive glaciers.
The majority of the population lives in Reykjavik, the capital, which is powered by geothermal energy and houses the National and Saga museums, which chronicle Iceland’s Viking history.
The imposing concrete Hallgrimskirkja church and revolving Perlan glass dome provide panoramic views of the sea and surrounding hills. The geothermal Blue Lagoon spa, in the settlement of Grindavik, is a good example of the island’s volcanic activity.
Ireland is a country in the North Atlantic Ocean that is separated by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and St George’s Channel.
Dublin, the capital, is the birthplace of Oscar Wilde and the home of Guinness beer. In Dublin’s Trinity College Library, the 9th-century Book of Kells and other illustrated manuscripts are on display. The country, known as the “Emerald Isle” because of its verdant nature, is littered with castles such as historic Cahir Castle.
Italy, a Mediterranean country with a lengthy coastline, has had a profound influence on Western culture and cuisine.
The Vatican, as well as famous art and ancient ruins, may be found in Rome, the country’s capital. Florence, with Renaissance treasures such as Michelangelo’s “David” and Brunelleschi’s Duomo; Venice, the city of canals; and Milan, Italy’s fashion center, are among the other prominent cities.
Kosovo is a partially recognized state in Southeast Europe, formally known as the Republic of Kosovo. It is located in the heart of the Balkans.
Pristina is the capital of Kosovo and the seat of the municipality and district of the same name. After Tirana, it is Europe’s second-largest Albanian-populated city. The Vina culture was active throughout the Paleolithic period in what is now Pristina.
Latvia is a Baltic Sea country located between Lithuania and Estonia. Wide beaches and lush, sweeping trees characterize the environment.
Riga, Latvia’s capital, is known for its timber and art nouveau buildings, as well as a massive Central Market and a historic Old Town with St. Peter’s Church. The Latvian Ethnographic Open-Air Museum, which features local crafts, food, and music, is one of Riga’s museums.
Liechtenstein is a 25-kilometer-long German-speaking principality sandwiched between Austria and Switzerland. It’s famous for its medieval castles, alpine vistas, and settlements connected by routes.
Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, featuring galleries of modern and contemporary art, is located in Vaduz, the capital and a cultural and financial center. Liechtenstein’s postage stamps are on display at the Postmuseum.
Lithuania is a country in Europe’s Baltic area, formally known as the Republic of Lithuania. It is one of three Baltic states and is located on the Baltic Sea’s eastern shore.
Vilnius, Lithuania’s capital, is noted for its baroque architecture, which can be found throughout the city, particularly in the historic Old Town. The partially cobblestoned lanes of this district, however, are lined with structures that reflect a variety of styles and eras, from the neoclassical Vilnius Cathedral to the Gothic St. Anne’s Church.
The Gate of Dawn, built in the 16th century and housing a shrine with a revered Virgin Mary icon, historically guarded one of the old city’s entrances.
Luxembourg is a small European country that is bordered on three sides by Belgium, France, and Germany. The Ardennes forest and natural parks are in the north, the Mullerthal region’s rugged gorges are in the east, and the Moselle river valley is in the southeast.
Luxembourg City, the country’s capital, is known for its ruins of medieval walls and is set amid deep gorges carved by the Alzette and Pétrusse rivers. A dungeon, prison, and the Archaeological Crypt, considered the city’s beginnings, are all part of the massive Bock Casemates tunnel network. The Chemin de la Corniche promenade offers stunning views from the ramparts above.
Between Sicily and the North African coast, Malta is an archipelago in the central Mediterranean. It’s a country famed for historic sites dating back to the Romans, Moors, Knights of Saint John, French, and British monarchs. It is home to a number of fortifications, megalithic temples, and the al Saflieni Hypogeum, an underground complex of halls and burial chambers that dates back to around 4000 B.C.
Valletta (also known as Il-Belt) is the capital of Malta, a Mediterranean island republic. The Knights of St. John, a Roman Catholic order, founded the walled city on a peninsula in the 1500s. Museums, palaces, and stately churches are among the city’s attractions. St. John’s Co-Cathedral is a Baroque monument that houses the Caravaggio masterpiece “The Beheading of Saint John” in its magnificent interior.
Moldova, a former Soviet republic in Eastern Europe, boasts a diverse landscape with woods, rocky hills, and vineyards. Nistreana, noted for reds, and Codru, home to some of the world’s largest cellars, are two of the country’s wine areas.
Chișinău is the capital of Moldova, a country in Eastern Europe. The neoclassical Nativity Cathedral is nestled among blocks of Soviet-style construction. Chișinău’s Cathedral Park, which includes a Triumphal Arch commemorating Russia’s 19th-century victory over the Ottoman Empire, is anchored by the dome-topped church. Stephen the Great Central Park honors a Moldovan prince who stood up to Ottoman tyranny.
Monaco, formally the Principality of Monaco, is a sovereign city-state and microstate in Western Europe, located on the French Riviera a few kilometers west of the Italian region of Liguria. It is surrounded to the north, east, and west by France, and to the south by the Mediterranean Sea.
Montenegro is a Balkan country with rocky mountains, medieval settlements, and a thin strip of Adriatic coastline lined with beaches. The fjord-like Bay of Kotor is lined with coastal churches and fortified settlements like Kotor and Herceg Novi.
Durmitor National Park contains limestone peaks, glacial lakes, and the 1,300m-deep Tara River Canyon, which is home to bears and wolves.
The current Millennium Bridge spans the Moraa River, and the stone bridge spans the Ribnica River. Podgorica is the capital city, and its rivers and bridges include the modern Millennium Bridge over the Moraa River and the stone bridge spanning the Ribnica River.
The ancient town is dominated by the centuries-old Clock Tower, which was built by the Turks. Lake Skadar National Park, located south of the city in the Zeta-Skadar valley, is home to ancient monasteries, beaches, and species like as the Dalmatian pelican.
The Netherlands is noted for its flat landscape of canals, tulip fields, windmills, and bicycle paths.
Amsterdam, is the capital city and home to the Van Gogh Museum, the Rijksmuseum, which has works by Rembrandt and Vermeer, and the Stedelijk. The city is also home to the house where Jewish diarist Anne Frank hid during WWII.
North Macedonia is a country in Southeast Europe that is formally known as the Republic of North Macedonia. As one of Yugoslavia’s successor states, it achieved independence in 1991.
North Macedonia’s capital and largest city is Skopje. It is the political, cultural, economic, and academic hub of the country. Skopje has been inhabited from at least 4000 BC, with Neolithic dwellings discovered within the old Kale Fortress, which overlooks the contemporary city center.
Norway is a Scandinavian country with mountains, glaciers, and deep fjords along its coast.
The capital, Oslo, is a city of parks and museums. The Viking Ship Museum in Oslo has preserved 9th-century Viking ships on display. Bergen is the starting point for cruises to the magnificent Sognefjord, with its colorful wooden buildings. Fishing, hiking, and skiing are also popular in Norway, particularly at Lillehammer’s Olympic resort.
Rhode Island, a New England state, is noted for its sandy beaches and seaside Colonial villages. It is home to a number of major communities, including Newport, which is known for its sailing and Gilded Age homes like The Breakers.
Portugal is a country in southern Europe that borders Spain on the Iberian Peninsula. Many aspects of Portugal’s culture have been influenced by its location on the Atlantic Ocean: salt cod and grilled sardines are national dishes, the Algarve beaches are a popular tourist destination, and much of the country’s architecture dates from the 1500s to the 1800s, when Portugal was a powerful maritime empire.
Lisbon is the hilly, coastal capital of Portugal. The vista from the majestic So Jorge Castle includes the pastel-colored buildings of the ancient city, the Tagus Estuary, and the Ponte 25 de Abril suspension bridge. The National Azulejo Museum, located nearby, contains colorful ceramic tiles from five centuries. From Cascais to Estoril, a line of Atlantic beaches may be seen just outside of Lisbon.
Romania is a country in Southeast Europe famed for its forested Transylvania area, which is surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains. There are many fortified churches and castles in the region, including the clifftop Bran Castle, which has long been associated with the Dracula legend.
Bucharest, Romania’s capital and commercial hub, is located in southern Romania. The huge, communist-era Palatul Parlamentului government edifice with 1,100 rooms is the city’s most recognizable landmark.
Nearby, the ancient Lipscani district has an active nightlife scene, as well as the modest Eastern Orthodox Stavropoleos Church and the 15th-century Curtea Veche Palace, which originally belonged to Prince Vlad III (“The Impaler”).
The Russian Federation, sometimes known as Russia, is a country that spans Eastern Europe and Northern Asia. It is the world’s largest country, covering 17,125,191 square kilometers and accounting for one-eighth of the planet’s livable landmass.
The nation’s cosmopolitan capital, Moscow, is located on the Moskva River in western Russia. The Kremlin, a compound that houses the president and tsarist relics in the Armoury, is located in the city’s historic heart. Red Square, Russia’s symbolic heart, is just outside its gates. The Mausoleum of Lenin, the State Historical Museum’s extensive collection, and St. Basil’s Cathedral, with its brilliant, onion-shaped domes, are all located here.
San Marino is a small mountainous microstate in northern Italy. It is one of the world’s oldest republics, with most of its historic architecture still standing.
The capital, also known as San Marino, is located on the slopes of Monte Titano and is famed for its medieval walled old town and narrow cobblestone alleyways. The Three Towers, which date from the 11th century, are castle-like citadels perched atop Titano’s adjacent peaks.
Serbia is a landlocked country in Central and Southeast Europe, formally known as the Republic of Serbia.
Serbia’s capital, Belgrade, is located in southeast Europe. The Beogradska Tvrava, a magnificent stronghold at the junction of the Danube and the Sava rivers, is the city’s most notable feature. The fort, which currently houses numerous museums as well as Kalemegdan, a large park, is a testament to the city’s strategic importance to the Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, Serbian, and Austrian empires.
Slovakia is a landlocked country in Central Europe, formally known as the Slovak Republic. Until January 1993, it was a part of Czechoslovakia.
Bratislava, Slovakia’s capital, is located on the Danube River, near the Austrian and Hungarian borders. Vineyards and the Little Carpathian mountains surround it, which are crisscrossed by woodland hiking and cycling trails. The vibrant taverns and cafes of the 18th-century old town, which is only accessible by foot, are well-known. The restored Bratislava Castle, perched on a hill, offers views of the old town and the Danube.
Slovenia is recognized for its mountains, ski resorts, and lakes, and is located in Central Europe. The town of Bled is located on Lake Bled, a glacial lake fed by hot springs, and features a church-topped islet and a cliffside medieval castle.
Slovenia’s capital and largest city is Ljubljana. It’s recognized for its university population and extensive open spaces, such as Tivoli Park. The city’s ancient town and economic centre are separated by the Ljubljanica River, which is surrounded with outdoor cafes.
The National Museum of Slovenia, which hosts historic exhibitions, and the Museum of Modern Art, which houses 20th-century Slovene paintings and sculptures, are among the many museums in Ljubljana.
Spain, located on Europe’s Iberian Peninsula, is divided into 17 autonomous regions, each with its own environment and culture. The population is estimated to be at 46.7 million people.
Segovia has a medieval fortress (the Alcázar) and a Roman aqueduct that is still in good condition. Antoni Gaud’s whimsical modernist structures, such as the Sagrada Famlia cathedral, define Catalonia’s city, Barcelona.
Sweden is a Scandinavian country with tens of thousands of coastline islands and inland lakes, as well as massive boreal forests and glaciated peaks.
Stockholm, the capital in the east, and Gothenburg and Malmö, in the west, are all seaside cities. Stockholm is a city made up of 14 islands. It boasts almost 50 bridges, as well as the medieval old town, Gamla Stan, royal palaces, and open-air museums like Skansen.
Switzerland is a mountainous country in Central Europe with several lakes, villages, and the Alps’ highest peaks.
The capital city of Switzerland is Bern. Its cities have medieval neighborhoods, such the Zytglogge clock tower in Bern and the wooden chapel bridge in Lucerne. Ski resorts and hiking trails are also popular in the country.
Banking and banking are important sectors, as are Swiss watches and chocolate.
Ukraine is an Eastern European country. After Russia, it is Europe’s second-largest country by area. The population is estimated to be at 43.3 million people (2021).
Kyiv, or Kiev, is Ukraine’s capital and most populous city. It is located along the Dnieper River in north-central Ukraine. Kyiv is an important Eastern European economic, scientific, educational, and cultural hub.
The United Kingdom is an island nation in northwest Europe made up of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.
The capital of England, London, is a worldwide influential financial and cultural center. The massive Houses of Parliament, the renowned ‘Big Ben‘ clock tower, and Westminster Abbey, the site of British monarch coronations, are all located in the heart of London. The London Eye observation wheel, located across the Thames River, offers panoramic views of the South Bank cultural complex and the entire city.
The capital city of Scotland is Edinburgh. It is a very cultural city with amazing art galleries, antiquarian bookshops, wonderful shopping and fine dining experiences. It has a medieval Old Town and an attractive Georgian New Town. Edinburgh Castle, which houses Scotland’s crown jewels and the Stone of Destiny, towers over the city. Calton Hill is topped with monuments and memorials, and Arthur’s Seat is an imposing hill in Holyrood Park.
The Roman Catholic Church is headquartered in Vatican City, a city-state bordered by Rome, Italy. It is the seat of the Pope as well as a treasure trove of iconic art and architecture.
The Vatican Museums feature ancient Roman sculptures such as the famous “Laocoön and His Sons,” as well as Renaissance frescoes in the Raphael Rooms and Michelangelo’s ceiling in the Sistine Chapel.