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I regret spending 2 weeks in Europe traveling to 6 different places. Next time, I’m choosing quality over quantity.

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I found out for myself in October 2022 when I went backpacking in Europe for the first time, visiting four countries and six cities. 

Back then, I wanted to see as much of the continent as possible. Since I was going for two weeks, I thought one or two nights in each city would help me make the most of my trip by allowing me to see a variety of places.

But once I was there, I realized I only got a sampling of what each destination had to offer.

I longed for more memories in Berlin — my first stop on the trip — as soon as I boarded my train to Vienna. And when I was headed from Austria to Italy, I felt I had barely gotten a taste of Vienna’s art scene.

I spent a week in Italy, but splitting my time between three different cities — Venice, Rome, and Milan — left me craving more.

The ancient city blended old and new. I strolled down cobblestone streets with ruins on one side and modern buildings on the other. Seeing the dramatic exteriors of Renaissance museums had me longing for enough time to go inside. And seeing ruins from a distance made me wish I had the chance to see them up close.

My last stop in Switzerland had my favorite landscapes of the whole trip, and after just two nights, I flew home wishing I’d made time for an epic mountain hike.

From stunning architecture and rich histories to striking landscapes, these cities impressed me upon arrival.

But with less than 48 hours to explore each destination, I could only hit the top tourist highlights, like the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, the Colosseum in Rome, and the canals in Venice

I didn’t have a chance to dive deeper into what life in each city was really like. If I had more time, I would have cruised on Lake Zurich, shopped in Milan, or stayed in the neighborhood of Kreuzberg in Berlin. Each day in every city, I walked past remarkable buildings and massive museums that intrigued me and thought, “Next time.”

So, no — two weeks is not enough time to explore six European cities, and I learned the hard way.

If you’re planning a trip to Europe, don’t find yourself saying “next time” every day, like me.

Instead, I recommend focusing on one or two cities or towns and taking the time to immerse yourself in their art scenes, neighborhoods, and history. That way, you’ll leave with a deeper sense of the destinations you carefully selected.

On my flight back to New York City, I’d already started mentally planning to visit Zurich, Berlin, Rome, and Vienna again.

So, on the way home, if you still wonder about a destination you didn’t get to, make sure there’s a next time.

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