There’s no denying it, football brings people together! Particularly a tournament on the scale of the UEFA European Football Championship, or Euro, which kicks off on Friday, June 11. To celebrate, we’re taking 10% off all air holidays to countries competing in the tournament! But wait. There’s a tiny catch. The offer only applies while a particular country is in the tournament – once a country is knocked out, so is the discount.
This summer, 11 incredible cities across Europe are set to host the much-awaited tournament. After facing a reschedule in 2020 – due to the pandemic – the national associations, local authorities, and UEFA have pulled together to create a tournament the fans have been waiting for.
Over 31 days, 51 exhilarating matches will be played across Europe, from Azerbaijan to Italy. While you witness athletes playing their best, the enthusiastic fans, and of course, the undeniable stadium atmosphere, you might wish you were there. And someday soon – you could be! To get you brainstorming about your next European holiday, we’ve rounded up the 11 cities hosting Euro matches and included a few cultural highlights you can’t miss.
While Copenhagen’s Parken Stadium is the smallest of the stadiums in this year’s championship, it’s in one of the most desirable holiday locations on the list. Copenhagen has long attracted tourists with its canals, bakeries, breweries, hippy haven of Freetown Christiania, and of course, the stunning examples of Scandinavian design.
When in Copenhagen, be sure to visit Torvehallerne Food Market to sample a range of delicious Danish foods. If you’re heading for breakfast, grab a hearty bowl of porridge at Grød, and if you’re wandering in at midday you can’t miss the Smørrebrød – a traditional Danish open-faced rye sandwich – at Hallernes Smørrebrød.
To test yourself in the art of Scandinavian living, hire scooters or bikes and head out of the city to La Banchina, a hidden gem with fantastic food, natural wines, and an on-site sauna overlooking the sea. Bonus points for hopping into the water (during winter is the most exhilarating way to do it!).
Suggested tour: Scandinavia Cruises (not included in Euro deal)
Only confirmed as a host on April 23, Munich will host all of Germany‘s group games. The Bavarian city is of course home to Oktoberfest, but it’s also home to impressive surf culture. Yes, surfing!
The Eisbachwelle is a human-made river flowing through the beautiful Englischer Garten. Here, you can witness the niche art of river surfing, catching local surfers trying their luck on this unique inner-city river wave. Bring a beer and pretzel.
Here’s one that might be a little closer to home. No visit to this Scottish city is complete without exploring the building that dominates the skyline: Glasgow Cathedral.
Built in 1197, this striking building is a fine example of Scottish Gothic architecture and is the oldest cathedral in mainland Scotland. Be sure to check out the nearby Necropolis, which is a fascinating Victorian garden cemetery right next to the cathedral.
It’s always a delight seeing Stadio Olimpico come alive. Such a sight may inspire you to head to Rome to see what else the magnificent Italian city has to offer. While it’s always a lovely to have a sit-down meal somewhere by the Colosseum or the Villa Borghese gardens, don’t turn a blind eye to the street food in Rome.
Start with the pizza cones or Trapizzino. This culinary treasure is triangular in shape and is a combination between a pizza pocket and a sandwich. It’s often filled with traditional Roman ingredients like oxtail or tripe. Be sure to visit Il Trapizzino for the delicious original. Sure, you won’t be abandoning the beloved traditional pizza pie anytime soon, but Trapizzino might just tempt you…
Ever been curious about how to throw back vodkas like a true Russian? Well, this is the spot for you. The Museum of Russian Vodka offers guided tours where you can experience traditional vodka making at its finest and understand the role this spirit has played in Russian culture over the years.
Despite not qualifying for Euro, Romania will host four exciting games as a neutral venue. When in Bucharest, you must get stuck into the local cuisine. While Romanian cuisine isn’t considered one of the major global cuisines like Italian, Mexican, or Chinese, perhaps it should be!
Salata de vinete, or roasted aubergine salad, is a popular appetizer that can is enjoyed as a snack or as the perfect smoky accompaniment to a delicious Romanian meal. The aubergines are roasted on a grill until they become mouth-wateringly soft, and are then combined with onion, garlic, and creamy mayonnaise.
And what about something irresistibly sweet? You’ve no doubt enjoyed polenta as cheesy, herby fries, but have you ever had it as dessert? In Romania, alivenci is a heavenly mixture of milk, sour cream, butter, corn and wheat flour, raisins, and vanilla, topped with fresh yoghurt. You’re unlikely to have tried anything quite like it!
Similar city name, but entirely different atmosphere. Many of the thermal baths in Hungary are hundreds of years old, but Szechenyi Bath is the largest and the most popular of the thermal baths in the country’s capital city of Budapest. Our tip is to visit early in the day on a weekday to avoid the crowds and allow for more soak time and more relaxation!
Did you know that just outside the canals and cobblestones of Amsterdam is the world’s largest flower garden? Just a half an hour drive from the capital city lies Keukenhof, the ultimate Springtime Dutch bulbfields Springtime destination.
In this almost magical garden, some seven million flowers carpet the soil in a horticultural display that attracts visitors from around the world each year. Wander the meandering pathways, or take a canal boat ride to get an alternate look of the stunning gardens.
It’s the beast in the East. The most easterly venue for Euro is located in a hidden gem of a city. You can’t visit Azerbaijan’s capital of Baku without paying a visit to Heydar Aliyev Cultural Center.
The modern, dramatically curved, white tiled structure was designed by Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid in 2012. Home to an extensive range of art collections and exhibitions, one afternoon in the centre will allow you to explore the best of the local Azerbaijani art and culture.
Right, here’s an easy one for all you UK dwellers. When in London, head to the Tate. No, Hyde Park. Wait no, Spitalfields Markets. No! Okay, okay. Start over. Gods Own Junkyard, an incredible fluorescent warehouse of vintage neon and lightbulb signs, should be at the top of your list. It’s something different, and far from the usual tourist hotspots, but you can expect colour and cheekiness.
Seville is the birthplace of Flamenco, so if you show up to this gorgeous Spanish city you are expected to dance! Flamenco has been titled a ‘living art’ form by UNESCO. Be sure to head to La Casa del Flamenco. Located in the former Jewish quarter of Seville, La Casa is an elegant 15th-century home-turned flamenco theatre that offers regular evening performances in an atmospheric space.