The Best Cities to Buy Property in Europe

There is no better time than right now to purchase property in Europe, especially if you’re looking to snag a hot deal. Whether you are looking to settle down in an Irish cottage where waves crash against the dramatic cliffs or you’re looking to earn rental income in the heart of Turkey, here are the top 15 cities to buy property in Europe.

15. Istria, Croatia

Head to Southern Europe to the super affordable corner that is Croatia’s Istrian Peninsula, where apartments and houses are cheap. Croatia borders the Adriatic Sea and offers two appealing retirement lifestyle options, whether you want to be on the coast or inland- where meadows, vineyards and olive groves are your backyards. The Romans invested in some of their best buildings here back in the day, as did the Venetians when they ruled. What that means for retirees here is a landscape full of fortresses, bell towers, and an architectural legacy.

Rovinj at sunset, Istra region, Croatia.

14. Athens, Greece

Greece took a big hit during the economic crisis which has created a great opportunity to purchase real estate now. Athens, the capital of Greece offers year-round entertainment and inexpensive flights from the UK. However, it’s important to be wary about where you buy, just as you would in any major city. It may be best to consider an apartment in the city center or invest in the Kolonaki and Plaka neighborhoods as these areas are far more affordable.

Source: Shutterstock

13. Zagreb, Croatia

Zagreb, Croatia’s capital is a gorgeous city that is rich in history dating back to Roman times. It’s predicted that Zagreb will see serious growth in the next couple of years which means this is a city you’ll want to have on your radar. In 2018, the country only saw an 8.5% increase in asking prices for condos, however, condos located in Zagreb saw a 20% increase. Further, in 2019 there was a 30% increase in Airbnb homes located in Zagreb which is a great indicator that the city is seeing a surge in vacation rentals. It’s evident that the city’s real estate market is booming and if you want to get in before the prices reach an all-time high, now is the time to buy!

Source: Shutterstock

12. Algarve, Portugal

Home to more than 100,000 resident expats, it is clear that for decades this place has been the hot place to buy. Luckily for those looking to experience the 3,300 hours of sunshine per year this place gets, the market is still affordable. The Algarve’s 100 miles of Atlantic coastline is full of jagged rock formations, lagoons, and sandy beaches. The waters are azure in color and the cliff-top vistas are spectacular, Add in 42 golf courses in the region, plenty of time for sailing and boating and you have yourself one heck of a place to live. Plus the average price per square meter for real estate is just $1,345 US, a pretty good bargain for a pretty special place.

Algarve, Portugal

11. Feldkirch And Bludenz, Austria

Austria is experiencing a real estate boom which is making the secondary cities more appealing. This is because property prices in secondary cities like Feldkirch and Bludenz are far lower than major cities like the country’s capital, Vienna. Feldkirch and Bludenz are both charming alpine cities that are surrounded by stunning forest mountains. Both towns saw a 20% increase in real estate prices in the last couple of years which is higher than the country’s capital which came in at about an 18% increase. These low prices won’t last for long, so now is the best time to buy.

Source: Shutterstock

10. Beara Peninsula, Ireland

There has been a strong surge in demand for family homes in desirable areas of Ireland’s main cities, but that shouldn’t discourage buyers who are looking to purchase in Ireland, it just means you need to go elsewhere. The buying place right now is on Ireland’s Southwest coast, that is if you are looking for a charming cottage or seaside house. This is not where you want to buy as an investor but instead, as a homeowner. The Beara Peninsula is the largest and most remote on this coast and houses here are quite inexpensive. Locals here are opting to buy new houses rather than renovate old traditional farmhouses and prices are rock bottom. Think $80,000 US for a typical Irish farm cottage that is steps away from the ocean and needs a little fixing up. Giant waves crashing onto cliffs, miles of sandy beaches, mountain range and warm air — there seems no good reason why we all shouldn’t be buying a second home in this beautiful country.

Beara Peninsula, Ireland

9. Istanbul, Turkey

Turkey’s property market wasn’t hit as hard as others in the world in the years 2008 and 2009, with recovery times only take about a year and a half. Despite that, Istanbul remains a bargain when it comes to real estate with starting market prices at about $1,000 a square meter. Turkey is a country of the future, with half of its population younger than 30 years of age, which means the time to invest, is now. With the economy growing and being diversified between Europe and Asia it is easier than ever for foreigners to invest here. A construction boom is also taking place in Istanbul as half the current housing stock in the country needs to be replaced or renovated, thus making it easy to get in on buying pre-construction apartments. Getting in early on a new build means discounted pricing and the expectation of price increase over the construction period. The time to invest in Turkey is now.

Istanbul, Turkey

8. Abruzzo, Italy

Abruzzo, Italy is a region that one may not think to consider when exploring properties in Italy but because it’s undiscovered it’s full of inexpensive properties. Abruzzo is full of charming ancient towns and has a landscape unlike anywhere else Italy from boasting hills to mountains. That said, you’ll still be able to indulge in all the things you love about Italy from delicious wine and food to stunning architecture and of course their hot summers. Purchasing a home in Abruzzo will cost you about $50, 000 US dollars, give or take depending on what town you choose to buy property in. Many of the homes are built of stone which helps to keep the homes cool in the summer and they’re also often equipped with open fireplaces to keep the home warm and cozy in the winter.

Source: leoks / Shutterstock.com

7. Rotterdam, The Netherlands

About an hour away from The Netherlands capital, Amsterdam is a quaint city called Rotterdam. Rotterdam is a port city and is full of hip art, plenty of shopping, and has a bustling nightlife. Most importantly, Rotterdam inspires so much innovation that it’s considered the architecture city of Holland. Rotterdam saw a 17% increase in home prices in the past year which far surpasses the country’s average of 10%. In 2019 properties sold in about 33 days which is 11% faster than in 2018. As you can see, the property demand in Rotterdam is growing at a fast rate, making Rotterdam a city you’ll want to invest in sooner rather than later.

Source: Shutterstock

6. Rennes, France

Rennes, France is rich in history, full of luscious green space, and has the appeal of a big city but on a much smaller scale. While there are 90 historic monuments in the old center, you will notice Rennes feels youthful. This is because over 200, 000 residents are students. Between the attractive property prices and the new High-speed rail that can get you from Rennes to Paris in about an hour and a half, there’s no wonder why Renne’s should be on your radar. But keep in mind the high-speed rail will continue to make this an attractive city so now the’s time to buy if you’re thinking of investing in property in France.

Source: lenisecalleja.photography / Shutterstock.com

5. Plovdiv, Bulgaria

Plovdiv is one of the oldest cities in Europe and is the second-largest city in Bulgaria, right behind the country’s capital, Sofia. The town was built around seven hills which is a large part of the city’s history. In 2019, The European Union named Plovdiv the European Capital of Culture which made the city a big focus for the whole year. This title also sparked a number of urban revitalization projects that have caused the city to see steady growth in real estate sales that is consistent with the country’s capital. With the city holding the European Capital of Culture title for a full year now, it’s predicted that the real estate will sky-rocket even further making it a great city to buy into now.

Source: Shutterstock

4. Budapest, Hungary

There is great value to be found all over Budapest and the time to get into the market is now when others haven’t. From 2007 to 2014 the market in Budapest was in a major slump, causing housing prices to hit rock bottom, and it is only now that they are starting to recover. Budapest is truly a beautiful place, both to live and work and that is great for any investor when it comes to real estate as the demand for rental properties continues to increase. Budapest also happens to be a year-round tourist destination offering amazing bathhouses, dining options, and architecture; drawing visitors who often seek out private rentals to stay in. With good yields, low to moderate transaction costs and pro-landlord laws, it is easy to understand why buying property here is the right choice.

GTS Productions / Shutterstock.com
GTS Productions / Shutterstock.com

3. Seville, Spain

Spain is a popular destination, between the pleasant climate, and stunning landscapes there’s a lot to see and do. But for those looking to buy a piece of real estate in Spain now is the time to do so. Spain’s economy suffered immensely during the economic crisis, however, after 2013 the decline started to slow. Now, the demand in real estate is beginning to grow again making it a great country to invest in. If you’re looking to buy property in Spain, the city of Seville is where you may want to start. This stunning city is famous for flamenco dancing and is home to major landmarks from the ornate Alcázar Castle complex to the site of Christopher Columbus’s tomb and more. The markets have shown that Seville has great revenue growth and for those looking to invest in a rental property, the rental demand is high as this city experiences low seasonality.

Source: Shutterstock

2. Apulia, Italy

This is the region that forms the heel of the Italian boot, a region not always thought of when you speak of Italy. But it is here where you can find low-priced properties in a stunning setting. Trulli houses, beehived shaped rural houses are the norm around here and there are plenty on the market for less than $100,000 US. Apulia features numerous sandy beaches on two coastlines, country land overflowing with vineyards and olive groves, and a slew of historic towns worth exploring. Living costs are low, there is an abundance of churches and palaces, medieval streets beckon you and craftsmen line the streets. This laidback, eccentric area is perfect whether you are buying a second home or starting over in life. A true bargain for a slice of Italian history, loaded with incredible scenery and people.

Apulia, Italy

1. Lisbon, Portugal

Time and time again we hear that this is the most affordable capital in Western Europe and it’s a wonder how long this will last as foreigners start to grab up inexpensive houses. For now, though it is quite inexpensive to buy here. A 2-bedroom apartment in a charming neighborhood will set you back about $100,000 US. Lisbon is a city where you can enjoy a European lifestyle, complete with history, romance, astonishing hospitality, and a seaside location for Latin American prices. The climate here is mild, the amenities are plenty and the people are among the most polite and friendly. With a low cost of living, charming hilly narrow streets and the sea at your fingertips. This is the perfect place to scoop up a second home.

Lisbon, Portugal

Eerie Abandoned Olympic Venues Around the World

The Olympics are an exciting time. We watch the games and cheer on our country’s representative athletes as they go for gold and strive to be the best in the world. To be awarded the title of host city for either the summer or winter Olympics is a great honor which requires years and years of preparations. What we see on the television is often bright, sparkly new state-of-the-art facilities which house the various sporting events during the games. What we don’t often see are the very same facilities, years later, which have become run down, abandoned and in serious states of disrepair. This dark side of hosting the Olympic games often goes unmentioned but many cities still sport the scars of games past. Here are some of the abandoned Olympic structures which are still standing around the world today:

1. Sarajevo, Yugoslavia -1984 Winter Olympics

In 1984, the city of Sarajevo in Yugoslavia (now Bosnia and Herzegovina) hosted the Winter Olympic Games. Many relics still stand around the country today, like this Olympic medal podium.

Fotokon / Shutterstock.com
Fotokon / Shutterstock.com

2. Sarajevo, Yugoslavia -1984 Winter Olympics

This concrete track in Sarajevo was used as the bobsled track for the 1984 Olympic games. It still remains today but these days it is covered in graffiti and overgrown with weeds.

Sarajevo Winter Olympics

3. Sarajevo, Yugoslavia -1984 Winter Olympics

This abandoned ski jump was the setting for many of the ski events during the 1984 Winter Olympics. Though the jumps are still intact today, they haven’t been used in decades.

Fotokon / Shutterstock.com
Fotokon / Shutterstock.com

4. Beijing, China -2008 Summer Olympics

Beijing, China was the site of the 2008 summer Olympic Games. The most notorious structure, the “birds nest” or Beijing National Stadium was to be used for sporting events after the games wrapped up but now sits unused, except for tourist tours.

Zhao jian kang / Shutterstock.com
Zhao jian kang / Shutterstock.com

5. Beijing, China -2008 Summer Olympics

During the 2008 summer games, this stadium was the site for the men’s and women’s volleyball championships. Today the stadium sits boarded up in a sad state of disrepair.

Photo by: Citylab
Photo by: Citylab

6. Beijing, China -2008 Summer Olympics

This concrete park in Beijing was the site of the Olympic kayak aquatic center. Today the site is abandoned but the words”One World, One Dream” still encircle the track.

Photo by: ABC News
Photo by: ABC News

7. Athens, Greece -2004 Summer Olympics

Athens, Greece played host to the 2004 summer Olympic games and the government spent a reported $15 billion in preparation for the games. In the end, the government went over budget, and today most of the expensive structures are no longer in use.

Mike Liu / Shutterstock.com
Mike Liu / Shutterstock.com

8. Athens, Greece -2004 Summer Olympics

The aquatics center in Athens, Greece was the site of many Olympic swimming and diving events during the 2004 summer games. Today the facility sits abandoned and run down.

Photo by: Fast Co Design
Photo by: Fast Co Design

9. Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy -1956 Winter Olympics

This dilapidated ski jump in Cortina d’Ampezzo is one of a few relics still standing from when the Italian city hosted the 1956 Olympic winter games.

Yuri Turkov / Shutterstock.com
Yuri Turkov / Shutterstock.com

10. Munich, Germany -1972 Summer Olympics

The city of Munich in Germany hosted the 1972 summer Olympic games. These games were overshadowed by the tragic Munich massacre in which 11 athletes and a German police officer were killed by a terrorist group. Today the abandoned Munich Olympic Train Station stands as a somber reminder of the 72′ Olympic games.

Munich Olympic Train Station

11. Berlin, Germany -1936 Summer Olympics

The 1936 summer Olympics were held in Berlin, Germany during Adolf Hitler’s reign of terror.  Also called the “Nazi Olympics” this was where Hitler used the games as an opportunity to promote his ideals of racial supremacy. Despite the games occurring 80 years ago, many old abandoned structures from the games can still be found around Berlin.

Photo by: i09
Photo by: i09

12. Helsinki, Finland -1952 Olympic Summer Games

The 1952 summer Olympic games took place in the city of Helsinki, Finland. Like many other host cities, Helsinki built several athletic facilities specifically for the games, which can still be seen today, although somewhat understandably, they aren’t looking so pretty these days.

Photo by: Confidentielles
Photo by: Confidentielles

5 Reasons Why It’s still a Good Time to Visit Athens

Athens has received a ton of bad press lately with all the fiscal turmoil in Greece, but Athens is a tough and gritty city, with lots of heart and perseverance. Much like the city, which on first glance appears cold and concrete, Athens requires time and love to really get to know and understand.  Locals here are very friendly, and they are proud of their city; they love to show off what they think makes their city great. People are hesitant to visit Athens now, but they shouldn’t be; the locals are ready now more than ever to welcome you to their city. And what is more, the lineups won’t be as long, and the streets as busy, which means at times it can feel like you have the city to yourself- just you and the local Athenians.

5. Acropolis

Standing high up on a plateaued rock, with amazing 360 degree views of the entire city, is the Athenian Acropolis, a historical site not to be missed in Athens. Structures dating back to the Classical period of Ancient Greece give us a glimpse of the detailed architecture prominent during that time. Hundreds of tourists make the pilgrimage daily to marvel at the most famous temple, The Parthenon, and the surrounding structures. Plan for a full day here; many people only visit The Parthenon, but the walk up to the building and the surrounding grounds and structures, like the Temple of Athena Nike, are just as impressive. There are a few concession stands available for drinks and snacks, but the prices are astronomical, so you are better off bringing your own water, as it is very hot during the summer months.

Acropolis Athens

4. Plaka neighbourhood

If the Acropolis is the historical head of the city, the Plaka is the historic heart. Located to the north of the Acropolis, this recently gentrified district is now very popular with tourists. Charming and historic, the Plaka is bustling with pedestrians wandering the many little shops and restaurants, as well as some of the local Roman ruins. One could easily spend a few days exploring all the little alleyways and shops of The Plaka, but if you are short on time, visit near dusk when this area comes to life. With the spotlight on the Acropolis in the background, grab a table at an outdoor patio and watch this neighborhood come to life; locals are boisterous and friendly, tourists are happy and laughing, and the Greek food is scrumptious and plentiful.

Kostas Koutsaftikis / Shutterstock.com
Kostas Koutsaftikis / Shutterstock.com

3. Monastiraki

Monastiraki, a district technically a part of The Plaka, is bohemian in feel, and constantly increasing in popularity among the tourists. The stores in this district are where you want to find and buy your souvenirs; antiques and clothing, locally made arts and crafts, and all the knick-knack knockoffs you can carry can be bought here. Although not actually a flea market, when people talk about the Greek Flea Market, the Monastiraki district is to what they are referring.  There are definitely scams- crafts claiming to be local, but actually “Made in China”, but if you look and are cautious, you can absolutely discover local, handmade gems. People who visit this district come for the experience and the atmosphere anyways; the colors, smells and culture here are what make this area unique and exciting.

Milan Gonda / Shutterstock.com
Milan Gonda / Shutterstock.com

2. Lykavittos Hill

If you are looking for the best viewpoint in Athens, this is it. From the top of the hill, you can see the whole city, the Acropolis, the port of Piraeus, and on a clear day, the Peloponnese. The road to the top is winding, but paved and not too steep, and can be easily walked in less than an hour at an extremely leisurely pace. Or, you can take the funicular railway from the top of Ploutarchou Street in Kolonaki -a fun alternative for those who would rather not walk. Bring lots of water, as it is hot all year round, and there are no concessions until you reach the top. If you would like, have a drink at the café; the views are amazing and the souvlaki wrap is one of the best in all of Athens. After visiting the small chapel of St George, if you timed it correctly, you can stay and watch the sunset over the entire city- the colors dance over the sky and light up all of Athens.

Lykavittos Hill Athens

1. National Archaeological Museum

Athens offers more than architectural wonders and historical landmarks; the birthplace of modern Western civilization is bound to house important and ancient artifacts of antiquity and influence. The National Archaeological Museum is one of the most visited in Athens; it is the largest archaeological museum in Greece and “one of the most important museums in the world devoted to ancient Greek art”. History buffs could spend all day studying the protected antiquities from all over Greece; even kids can find enjoyment looking at objects with such historical, cultural and artistic value, they have survived hundreds of years.   Those interested in museums must not miss others in Athens, such as the New Acropolis Museum (which has a phenomenal restaurant), the Agora Museum and the Museum of Cycladic Art.

imagIN.gr photography / Shutterstock.com
imagIN.gr photography / Shutterstock.com

The 10 Cheapest Cities to Touchdown in Europe

A trip across the Atlantic Ocean over to the Old World of Europe may only be a fantasy for a number of North Americans. With airfare, accommodations, food, spending money and all the other little things that add up it can be an exceedingly costly trip. Though many people may dismiss the thought of a European getaway as just a fantasy that isn’t fiscally obtainable, that doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. One may be surprised to learn that certain cities are much more affordable to visit than others and the reasons for this can range from lower airport taxes to economic struggles. Below is a look at 10 of the best places in Europe to visit by cost:

10. Athens, Greece

Athens International Airport is the obvious international hub of Greece, though that may not be the best plan of arrival for potential visitors. In bound flights to Greece are rarely cheap, and it usually makes more sense for travelers to land elsewhere in Europe and make a short land trip into the country instead. Due to recent economic struggles in the country, hotel prices have dropped quite a bit in the past few years.

Tourism is a major industry and a key part of the Greek economy. Greece ranks as the 10th most visited country in Europe, and saw over 15-million visitors in 2012. Major attractions in Athens include: the Acropolis, the Parthenon, the Agora and the National Archaeological Museum. For travelers on a budget, Greece is an ideal candidate to visit on a trip through a number of countries as prices for hotels and other amenities have dropped from the aforementioned economic struggles.

Athens, Greece

9. Milan, Italy

The choice between Milan and Rome is a difficult one, but Milan comes out slightly cheaper in comparison for tourists. Milan is one of the most important tourist destinations in all of Europe, and will never truly be a bargain destination for visitors. The addition of Emirates flights to Milan, however, means that there are more reasonably priced flights to a destination considered to be truly first class among travelers.

The city is home to two professional soccer clubs that share the famous San Siro stadium, considered a Mecca of sorts to traveling fans that are as vocal as they are loyal and exist all across the globe. Milan is also home to Pinacoteca di Brera, Piazza del Duomo, and the Milan Cathedral. Italy ranks as the 3rd most popular European destination behind only France and Spain, and Milan provides an opportunity to experience a cultured city for a relatively reasonable price.

Milan, Italy

8. Prague, Czech Republic

A country known to savvy travelers as a little-known gem, the Vaclav Havel Airport in Prague is where visitors land. The country has started to gain notoriety for being a great place to visit, and has experienced a major boom to its tourism industry. The secret is starting to get out, however, as prices have started to rise in the past few years as more and more people become aware of the beauty of the Czech Republic.

Younger travelers may be interested in the nightlife offered in Prague, as it is known for being low cost, and home to a large number of bars and clubs that are in close proximity and open late. There are a number of castles, breweries, and quaint towns to visit throughout the Czech Republic, but potential visitors should act quickly as prices are expected to continue to rise in this historic and unique Eastern European nation.

Prague, Czech Republic

7. Madrid/Barcelona, Spain

Though the two cities provide a vastly different experience, both cost travelers an almost identical price. Madrid is home to Barajas Airport, while Barcelona has El Prat Airport. For those with an interest in the “beautiful game” both Madrid and Barcelona provide an opportunity to catch some of the best soccer players in the world plying their craft in the confines of the magnificent stadiums.

The Spanish economy has become fairly reliant on tourism as an industry, which has seen a decline due to economic issues. Luckily for potential tourists, this means costs will be less for a very popular destination. Each city provides a unique experience, with the high-tempo Madrid contrasting perfectly to the quieter Barcelona. Take advantage while the opportunity is there, as Spain is still the 2nd most popular destination in Europe. If possible (and if desirable), visit Ibiza for a crazy night or two, as it is recognized as the party capital of the world.

Anton_Ivanov / Shutterstock.com
Anton_Ivanov / Shutterstock.com

6. Budapest, Hungary

Much like Prague in the Czech Republic, Budapest in Hungary is another less-obvious tourist haven that has started to become more recognized. The cheapest tickets for a flight into Budapest’s Ferenc Liszt International Airport usually involve a stopover in Moscow or Helsinki, though a stop in Zurich is not much more in terms of cost and saves a great deal of time. Similarly, like Prague, prices for Budapest have begun to climb in 2014.

Popular attractions in Budapest include Buda Castle, which includes: the Hungarian National Gallery, the Matthias Church, the Parliament Building and the City Park. Thermal baths are another popular tourist destination, and the Danube River passes through the city providing for great scenery. While Budapest may not be top of mind in terms of European cities to travel to, take some time to learn about its great history before crossing it off a list of places to visit.

Budapest, Hungary

5. Lisbon, Portugal

The westernmost large city and capital in Europe, Lisbon has been on the rise as a popular and affordable tourist destination. Tourism has started to become an increasingly important industry in Portugal, with Lisbon becoming one of the most visited cities in all of Europe. Flights to Lisbon Portela Airport, the international airport in Lisbon are reasonably priced, and the city is known to be much less expensive than other premier destinations in Europe.

Some of the more popular destinations in Lisbon are the Sao Jorge Castle, Belem Tower, Lisbon Oceanarium and the Church of Santa Engracia. Potential visitors should aim to get to Portugal before the tourism industry truly takes off in the country, while flights and local prices are still more accessible for travelers. Take in some soccer before leaving, and maybe get a chance to witness world-famous Cristiano Ronaldo as he continues his quest to break long-held records.

Lisbon, Portugal

4. Paris, France

The dream vacation for a number of North Americans is a trip to the world-class city of Paris. The popularity of the city has led to Charles de Gaulle Airport being one of the busiest hubs in Europe. Because of this, travelers can find surprisingly competitive prices for a flight to Paris. As of 2014, costs have even slightly improved for tourists as well.

Paris is home to a number of France’s most famous attractions, starting of course with the Eiffel Tower. The Arc de Triomphe is another famous monument built to honor those who fought and died for France during the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars. The world-renowned Louvre Museum is also in Paris, home to the Mona Lisa and many other iconic pieces of art. The diversity of sights in Paris also features the iconic Notre Dame cathedral, a gothic-style church that is as gigantic as it is awe-inspiring.

Top Cities 2013 - Paris

3. Istanbul, Turkey

Despite the significantly further distance to travel to Istanbul in comparison to the rest of Europe, Istanbul can offer some reasonable prices for airfare. Turkey ranks as the 4th most popular destination in Europe, and 10th most popular in the world. With tourism in mind, the government in Turkey has undertaken the development of what will be the world’s largest airport in Istanbul, with the first (of a four part plan) being completed in 2017.

Due to the historical significance of Istanbul, the city is one of the most important tourist destinations in the world. Some of the major tourist sights in the city include the Haiga Sofia, the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, Topkapi, Basillca Cistern and Galata Tower. Istanbul is also home to Cevahir Mall, the biggest shopping mall in all of Europe (and 7th largest in the world). The city is also home to a number of museums, sports teams and cultural events.

Istanbul, Turkey

2. Dublin, Ireland

Ireland is a remarkably cheap country to visit in comparison to the rest of Europe. Though Dublin is the capital of the country, the airfares for flights landing at Dublin Airport are less than that of Shannon Airport, Ireland’s other international hub. Tourism provides a significant amount of income for Ireland’s economy with more than 6-million people visiting the country in 2012.

Destinations in Dublin include St Patrick’s Cathedral, the National Museum of Ireland, Trinity College, Christ Church Cathedral and of course the Guinness Storehouse. While at the Guinness Brewery, taste brews that are only available in Ireland, and take a break in their famous lounge. In 2010, the United Nations even awarded Dublin the title of UNESCO City of Literature due to the number of famous writers who are from the city. Travelers should also be pleased to know that Ireland also has no departure tax or comparable fees for air travel.

Bridge Dublin Ireland

1. Moscow, Russia

Even though the distance to Russia is quite far, travelers shouldn’t be intimidated by the fear of an expensive trip. Russia’s national airline, Aeroflot, is one of the cheapest tickets in Europe, and many cheap flights to other countries stop over in Moscow. Russia has seen a rise in tourism likely as a result of the previous Winter Olympics, but the current economic landscape in Russia benefits potential tourists right now.

There are a number of world-famous tourist destinations in Moscow, most notably the Kremlin and Red Square, the political heart of Russia. The city also features the impressive architecture of Saint Basil’s Cathedral, the Winter Palace and the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. The city is also home to the iconic Mausoleum of Lenin. It is important to note the cultural differences between Russia and the west, so it is best to read up on recent political and legislative changes that unfortunately may deter some travelers from wanting to travel here.

Moscow Russia Red Square

10 Worst Cities in the World for Pickpocketing

When you are traveling, you always need to be watchful of your valuables. This is especially true of items that you carry in your pockets. When you are traveling in a foreign country, you need to be especially careful in certain places that are known for pickpockets. Here is a guide to the ten worst cities in the world for pickpockets.

1. Barcelona

This beautiful Spanish seaside city hides a danger underneath its surface. It is notorious for thieves who like to prey on unsuspecting tourists. The large crowds and boisterous noise provide the perfect environment for pickpockets to operate.
Pickpocket 1

2. Prague

This is widely considered by many to be among the most beautiful cities in Europe. It draws in legions of tourists every year, but many of them leave with less cash than they should. Be very wary of the large crowds that provide cover for pickpockets at the tourist hotspots like the Charles Bridge in Prague.
Pickpocket 2

3. Rome

Rome is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, and that reputation draws in the thieves. They have easy pickings with the many tourists who walk around in a daze as they gaze upon all the famous sights. Be mindful of your surroundings at all times in Rome, especially in busy areas.
Pickpocket 3

4. Madrid

Spain can be proud of many things, but having two cities among the top five most notorious pickpocket locations in the world is not one of them. The Spanish capital of Madrid is also one of the world’s pickpocketing capitals. The metro and the markets are the locations where tourists need to be especially careful to guard themselves against the sticky fingers of petty thieves.
Pickpocket 4

5. Paris

They say that Paris is a city for lovers. That reputation may help explain why it is one of the world’s leading pickpocketing sites. The lovers walk around in a haze as they enjoy their romances, which makes them easy marks for the thieves who patrol the city’s streets. They are especially prevalent on the city’s metro lines. The crowded trains make it easy for them to operate without getting caught. People are packed in so tight that it can be difficult to notice someone’s hand reaching into your pocket.
Pickpocket 5

6. Buenos Aires

This is one of the wealthiest cities in South America, which brings in lots of thieves who are looking to siphon off some of that wealth. One of the most infamous tricks these thieves pull is to have one person dump something on a tourist. An accomplice then comes in to “help” the tourist by cleaning them off, which gives them an ideal camouflage for rifling through the mark’s pockets.
Pickpocket 6

7. Florence

One of the most famous artists’ cities in the world is also infamous for its pickpockets. It is easy for these thieves to steal from tourists when they are gazing in rapture at the stunning artworks that abound in the city.
Pickpocket 7

8. Amsterdam

This is one of the most delightful tourist destinations in the world. Its thieves are just as welcoming as the rest of its residents, and it is easy for them to operate in Amsterdam’s laidback atmosphere. The thieves make easy work of the inebriated tourists who like to indulge themselves in Amsterdam’s legendary party scene.
Pickpocket 8

9. Hanoi

The Vietnamese capital is also the pickpocketing capital of Asia. The city is full of noise with its steady stream of motorcycles, cars and taxis always honking. This noise and the bustling crowds provide a nice cover for the petty thieves who ply their trade on Hanoi’s busy streets.
Pickpocket 9

10. Athens

No city on Earth has more historical sites to see than Athens. These sites often put tourists into an enchanted stupor in which they become easy prey for the legions of pickpockets who operate here. Tourists need to secure their money well before heading out to see the famous historical ruins of the city like the Acropolis and the Parthenon.
Pickpocket 10

10 Most Haunted Cities in America

The United States has a profound and complex history. We have fought wars, battled sickness, and suffered social turmoil right on our very own soil. Many people believe that traces of these tragedies can still be witnessed today. If you have a craving for the supernatural, there are several sites to visit throughout this country. Here is a list of the ten creepiest cities in America.

10. Estes Park, Colorado

This city is known for the Stanley Hotel. Horror movie fans may recognize this site as the inspiration for Stephen King’s The Shining. For years, guests of this hotel have reported moving objects and various spirits lurking in the shadows.
Stanley Hotel Estes Park Colorado

9. Washington D.C.

The White House appears to be at the core of our nation’s ghostly encounters. Over the years, White House staffers have claimed to feel the presence of President Lincoln. Others have reported hearing Abigail Adams doing the laundry. There have also been sighting of the Demon Cat, which acts as an omen of death.
White House Washington DC

8. Fall River, Massachusetts

“Lizzie Borden took an ax/ gave her mother 40 whacks/ when she saw what she had done/ she gave her father 41”
This popular poem has been a part of American culture for more than 120 years. It is believed that Lizzie Borden killed her parents one fateful afternoon in 1892. In the city of Fall River, guests can stay in the home, and bedrooms, of the murders of Lizzie’s parents, Andrew and Abby Borden.
Fall River Massachusetts

7. Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

During the Civil War, thousands of soldiers were wounded or killed on the Gettysburg Battlefield. There was so much spilled blood that medical personnel created holes in the floors in order to drain it. Several streets and homes near this historic battlefield have reports of ghostly sights from this historic and fatal event.
Gettysburg Pennsylvania

6. Athens, Ohio

The college town is the home of the former Athens Lunatic Asylum. At this site, people have reported ghosts walking the halls and mysterious bloodstains on the floors. The Ohio University campus has also had sightings of a young woman who was killed in her dorm room.
Athens Ohio

5. San Francisco, California

Alcatraz Island remains the site of our country’s most famous prison. It is also popular for its paranormal activity. There have been reports of ghostly disturbances throughout the old cell blocks. The San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is known to host a headless jogger that suddenly appears in the dense fog.
Alcatraz Island San Francisco

4. San Diego, California

The Whaley House in San Diego is the site of one of most gruesome executions in our history. “Yankee Jim” was arrested and hanged for grand larceny. Because he was too tall for the noose, he suffered a slow and painful death. Several people have claimed to feel a sudden tightening around their necks while visiting this house.
Whaley House San Diego, California

3. Richmond, Virginia

Richmond, Virginia is a virtual hotbed of paranormal activity. The Tuckahoe Plantation, childhood home of Thomas Jefferson, has been known for ghostly sightings for over 100 years. There is also the Edgar Allan Poe Museum, which has reported unexplained footsteps and the voices of children.
Tuckahoe Plantation Richmond Virginia

2. Chicago, Illinois

In 1929, Chicago was the site of the infamous Valentine’s Day Massacre. Al Capone and his goons executed seven men with machine guns. At night, people have witnessed blood-curdling screams and the sound of gunfire on the haunted North Clark Street. Chicago is also home to Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery, one of the most haunted cemeteries in America.
Chicago Illinois 1

1. New Orleans, Louisiana

The oldest cemetery in New Orleans is said to be protected by a Voodoo priestess. People have reported seeing and hearing her presence on the grounds. New Orleans was also the home to many slave owners. The LaLalaurie House was owned by a disturbed and vengeful madam. The ghosts of the slaves she abused have been known to chase children and scream into the night.
Haunted Cemetary

The World’s Most Historic Vacation Spots

Good news for all of you history buffs out there. Your quest for ancient ruins, sacred wonders, and world-famous landmarks need not be squandered at an all-inclusive resort. It’s not as challenging as one might think to choose a vacation destination with historic highlights.

Here are ten prime vacation spots for history lovers…

1. Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico

If you like to lounge on a stunning beach between your explorations of ancient Mayan ruins, Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula offers a perfect blend of both. In Cancun you’ll find the world renowned ruins of Chichen Itza and Cobá. And in nearby Merida you can follow the Puuc trek and explore the many Mayan delights—such as the Uxmal ceremonial grounds and pyramids.

Chichen Itza Mexico

2. Athens, Greece

Athens is the premiere site of Greek myth. Here, you can trace the origins and stories of Greek immortals—like Zeus and Poseidon. As one of the world’s oldest cities, you’ll discover history galore. Start with the Acropolis of Athens, explore the famous Parthenon, check out the seats at the Old Olympic Stadium, and if you have time for a dip in the gorgeous azure waves, it’s a pure bonus.

Parthenon, Athens, Greece

3. Petra, Jordan

If Indiana Jones inspired your adventurous side—the city of Petra, scene of the fictional hero’s Holy Grail quest will certainly get your whip spinning. Petra sits carved into a canyon in Arabah, Jordan, where, as the real story goes, was uncovered in 1812 by a Swiss explorer. Today, Petra is among the New Seven Wonders of the World.

Petra, Jordan

4. Rome, Italy

It should be no surprise to find Rome on this list of top historical cities. Not only is it the birthplace of one of the world’s most influential civilizations; it’s also the site of ruins of ancient Rome—such as the Colosseum, The Roman Forum, the early Christian Catacombs of San Callisto, Palatine Hill, the Baths of Caracalla, Villa dei Quintili, and the remains of Port of Ostia Antica.

Villa Borghese Gardens, Rome

5. Machu Picchu, Peru

Well worth the 4-day trek, Machu Picchu is all that remains of the lost Incan civilization in Peru before it was ravaged by the Spanish. You can explore the “Lost City of the Incas” along with hordes of other tourists. So it’s best to plan a day trip and arrive early to get the biggest bang for your efforts.

machu picchu 10

6. Bejing, China

A reminder of the emperors who once ruled this vast empire, Bejing is home to a plethora of Asian culture and influence—such as the Forbidden City, the Ming Tombs, and the Great Wall of China, which almost fully-preserved, dates back to the glorious Ming Dynasty.

Beijing Great wall

7. Angkor Wat, Cambodia

A stunning example of Khmer architecture, the Angkor Wat Temple dates back to the early 12th century. Constructed by Cambodia’s King Suryavarman II as the state capital, the temple holds many unique bas-reliefs (colonettes carved in sandstone) and devatas (elaborate Hindu carvings of deities).

Angkor Wat

8. Budapest, Hungary

The picturesque city of Budapest still harbors many of the forgotten Roman and Medieval sites—although many are now found in ruins. However, you can still take a step back through history amid the Roman-inspired Aquincum to Matthias Church, and the medieval Buda Castle and museums.

Buda Castle, budapest

9. Agra, India

Obviously, the Taj Mahal is India’s most famous and celebrated ancient structure. However, Agra, a short train excursion from Delhi, offers an abundance of historical architecture for the history buff. Remnants of the Mughal Dynasty and one-time Indian capital of Fatehpur Sikri still linger like ghosts in this thriving city.

Taj-Mahal

10. Cairo, Egypt

Cairo is steeped in the remains of ancient Egypt and the inspiring civilizations that were responsible for modern day marvels such as the Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx, which will have you scratching your noodle over the possibility of the construction. The 481-foot building, which took almost 20 years to build, was once considered the tallest man-made structure in the entire world—and that was without the use of cranes or modern machinery.

pyramids-egypt