Unique Europe

From the castles to the museums, from the historic city centers and royal palaces, Europe has plenty to keep any visitor occupied for days, weeks, and longer. However, there are some truly fascinating and unique places to explore in Europe. These places are often quickly looked past in favor of the high profile attractions found in most European cities but they are equally as memorable. So if you are looking to explore the sites and sounds a little off the beaten track, then check out some of these pretty cool places found all over Europe.

Ice Hotels

Nestled between snow-capped Carpathian Mountains this hotel of ice in Romania will be a one of a kind experience if you are seeking unusual accommodations. The floors, walls, and ceilings are sculpted out of ice every year and reindeer fur lines the beds creating a surprisingly cozy night’s sleep. There is even an Ice Chapel where guests can get baptized or even married. In the evening most guest really enjoy the restaurant and bar with its shimmery, beautiful atmosphere. The Fagaras Mountains that surround the hotel are icy and quiet and make for a truly magical stroll in the winter. There are also opportunities for snowshoeing, ice-skating, or even learning to ice sculpt your own ice. The hotel can be easily reached via a cable car and makes for a truly unique experience. So grab your long undergarments and prepare for a great time.

Perhaps more notable though is the famous Ice Hotel in Sweden’s Lapland region located 200 km above the Arctic Circle. Here you will be tucked into a thermal sleeping bag set on top of a bed of ice, though you will also have reindeer skins and a mattress between you and frigid water. Inside the hotel it stays warmer than the outside temperature, which can reach temperatures well below zero. If a chilly night is too much for you, the hotel also offers warm accommodations by staying in one of their chalets. The hotel offers extra warm clothing for their guests to enjoy during their stay that is certain to be one you will be talking about for years to come.

Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland

At the foot of the basalt cliffs in Northern Island lie at giant bridge of columns that seem to sprout right up out of the ocean. Hexagonally shaped and interlocking, these columns are the result of an ancient volcanic eruption yet many legends suggest it was built by a giant as a way to fight a rival neighboring giant, hence the name. Now listed as a World Heritage Site, Giant’s Causeway is not only a unique place to visit but also gives you a beautiful view of the northern ocean. Other legends surround a rock resembling the giant’s boot, the giant’s harp, and even the giant’s chimney stacks. The area is also a national park and a haven for many types of sea birds and unique sea life.

Wine Caverns of Moldova

If you enjoy wine, prepare to be awed by the 75 miles of winding roadways located deep underground housing countless bottles of wine. In Cricova, Moldova, these wine caverns were first carved out in the 15th century out of limestone. This underground wine city allows you to actually drive your cars through the caverns with “streets” named after the wines they store. There are tasting rooms and other facilities underground as well and houses over one million bottles of wine and a whopping 330 feet underground. The oldest wine here dates back to 1902 and the collection has many other rare wines. Russian president Vladimir Putin actually celebrated his 50th birthday here.

Dracula’s Castle, Transylvania

Historically known as Bran Castle but made internationally famous by Bram Stocker’s account of the sinister vampire Count Dracula, this eerie medieval castle will send shivers up your spine. Built in 1388 is perched high in the mountains shrouded in dark forests and ancient rivers. The castle has numerous secret passageways and surrounding villages will gladly tell you haunting tales of the evil spirits that live in the dark woods.

The castle began as a medieval fortress standing guard over the only entrance into Transylvania and was later a royal residence for Queen Maria of Romania and remained so until after her death when it was restored and later converted into a museum and tourist attraction in the 1990’s. The countryside surrounding it is truly beautiful and despite the chilling legends and tales, it is a wondrous place to visit.

Cappadocia, Turkey

Known as the fairy chimneys, these rock formations in the Cappadocian Region of Turkey are a mix of natural wonder and human history. Though etched by wind, humans have been adorning these rocks for centuries with decorations and even carving houses and churches within their pillars. The nearby villages are equally as ancient and fascinating to explore giving you a real chance to step back in time and experience a slower paced style of life. These mythic, fairy-tailed structures are one of a kind and are a glimpse of civilizations that have been in this region for thousands of years.

For more information on traveling to Europe please visit http://www.destinationeuropeonline.com/

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