If places could have hearts, Europe’s would be in many places. Such is the liveliness of this continent, the sheer delight of its vastness and history, engulfing treasures and experiences that one cannot even fathom to find elsewhere. So now then, if you were to think of holidaying in ‘Europe,’ where would you go? A difficult question, if at all one was ever asked.

It is imperative to take into account some of the best destinations to visit in Europe, and start with the small, crisp list compiled below:

Italy

Rome wasn’t built in a day, but it sure looks like a fantasy city manifested from some far-flung heaven. Visit Italy for some of these delightful cities including Florence, Amalfi Coast and Milan. The Colosseum in Rome is a sight for sore eyes, as are the many art museums of Botticelli and Da Vinci, the Duomo and stone foot-bridges in Florence. And if your breath is still not completely knocked out, Venice will do the job nicely.

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France

The city of love – Paris rests like a crown of exquisite jewels on France. Visit the Eiffel Tower of Paris and sit outside a cafe sipping fresh coffee with a plate of flaky soft croissants. Bordeaux is a delight for wine-lovers, a countryside of vineyards and cellars and wine-making ventures; while the best summer vacations are spent sunbathing on the south-of-France coastline of Nice, Monaco and Cannes.

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England

Did anyone tell you that it always rains in England? But what does it matter? Sometimes it is in the grey dreary daylight that you see the real beauty that this country is. Visit London, the lifeline of England and the stronghold of the British Monarchy – Buckingham Palace, The Westminster Palace, The Tower of London and Big Ben. The English countryside is just as delightful, albeit in an idyllic sort of way – the long sweeping meadows of Yorkshire, small towns near St. Ives and the slow English life of hamlets. Rather delightful!

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Switzerland

The name of the country brings iced mountains and lakes to mind. Well, that is Switzerland in a nutshell. But this is a country that can’t be visited in just any season. The most ideal season to visit Switzerland falls in the summer months, between June and September, when the Alps are dusted with perfect thick snow for skiing, lakes are melted into crystal coloured pools and sceneries are green with tall deciduous vegetation. Some of the best places here include Geneva, Bern, Interlaken and Jungfrau.

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Greece

If you want to hunker down to the roots of the western civilisation, turn right towards its cradle – Greece. From the ruins of Parthenon and the Acropolis in Athens to the vibrant culture bursting at the seams in Thessaloniki, from the Aegean sea-side town of Mykonos to the brilliant white and cobalt blue island of Santorini, you will be in a paradise of the Mediterranean kinds.

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So now that you know the jewels of Europe – these 5 must-visit destinations, you know where to find the beating hearts of this beautiful continent. So what’s stopping you? Pack your bags and take the plunge. Europe awaits with open arms.