Full of cobblestone laden streets and old historic churches, Europe is a place that is visited and frequented by many. However, amidst the old colonial like feel, once in a while, we see bright and vivid pops of color, giving you that perfect “instagrammable” background. For those who love bright colors and unique backdrops, here are some of the most colorful towns and villages in Europe that are worth visiting. From the popular villages of Burano or Cinque Terre in Italy, all the way to lesser known villages in Romania, a visit to these places is something we very much recommend.
Most Colorful Towns in Europe
When people say Romania, dark eerie castles and spooky folklore immediately come to mind. However, if you head to Sighisoara, Romania, you will be completely taken a back as you marvel at the many quaint pastel colored houses in this UNESCO protected town. Visiting this medieval city is one of the top things to do in Transylvania, as this fortified area has a rich past. Known as the home town of Vlad Tepes (Vlad the Impaler or Dracula), this place is a tourist hot spot that is well worth visiting, especially during the summer months. Walk around in the maze-like alleyways, visit ancient churches, or just simply sit in the local cafes as you gaze at the colorful houses and windows that make up the entire town. It is the perfect mix of charming, historical, and hip!
I have to admit that I am currently kicking myself in the butt for going to Venice but missing out on visiting Burano. Located northeast of Venice, Burano is an Italian island in the Venetian Lagoon that is full to the brim of colorful canals and brightly painted houses. Really, this place is every photographer’s dream! From Venice, you can ride a water taxi which takes about 45 minutes to an hour until you reach the colorful shores of this tiny village.
Families used to paint their homes in bright colors to symbolize where their family’s quarters ended and where their neighbors began. Apart from this, because Burano is very much a fishing village, the colorful houses is to make their homes more visible from the sea. Apart from the colorful houses, people also head to Burano to buy some handmade lace which is lovingly made by the local women.
While you are bound to find bursts of color everywhere you go in Lisbon, one of my favorite viewpoints of the entire city is located in the heart of Lisbon in Rossio Square. Officially named Praça Dom Pedro IV, this square boasts of beautiful views of the colorful little houses and buildings
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This iconic 17th-century water-front canal and entertainment district in Copenhagen, Denmark is frequented by many, not just for its electric atmosphere but also for its colorful buildings which surround the area. What used to be a busy commercial port which was packed with sailors and alehouses, Nyhavn now is a trendy upper scale area where people go to for good food and jazz music. With some houses dating back to 1681, some of the houses have already been renovated and redone while still retaining their original designs.
Procida Island, Italy
Located in the Bay of Naples in the Southern Part of Italy, Procida Island is one of those places that will quite literally take your breath away. Everywhere you go on this small little island, you will find beautiful charming colorful houses and buildings in various shades of pastel and bright colors.
If you drive along the coast to reach one of the many viewpoints, you will be treated to aerial views of the colorful little town. What makes this place even more intriguing is the fact that the houses are built on top of each other, making navigating through the labyrinth of streets, even more, fun and interesting.
Related: Top 15 Travel Tips for Europe
Portobello Street, Notting Hill London
Located right in the heart of the Notting Hill district in West London, you can find Portobello Street which is home to the world’s largest antique market with over 1,000 vendors selling every kind of antique and collectible imaginable. Apart from the quirky shopping, the buildings and houses along this road are all painted in various hues of pastel. While there are plenty of things to do in Notting Hill, this street is beyond charming and and a great stop, especially during weekends to just walk around and sightsee.
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Cinque Terre, Italy
When I first visited the 5 villages comprising Cinque Terre, I was absolutely amazed. The charming houses, the colorful buildings, and the stunning view of the coastline. A few years later, I decided to head back and was as equally in awe as I was when I first saw it years ago. While all five villages are quaint and colorful, the village of Vernazza is a particular favorite.
Colorful houses and incredible views aside, I do admit to my preference having to do with the fact that Vernazza is home to THE best gelato place in town. If you do end up going to Cinque Terre, a visit to Gelateria Vernazza is a must!
Located in Catalonia between Barcelona and Costa Brava is the small little town of Girona. Between the colorful houses along the canals to the narrow winding city roads and Jewish Quarters, this city is a fantastic place to visit while in Spain. Popular as a day trip from Barcelona, you can take a high-speed train just to explore this beautiful medieval like city.
Located in the Andalusian part of Spain is the village of Juzcar, which is known as smurf village. While I would like to come up with a better reason as to why the entire village is blue, sadly, I can’t as much of it is due to a marketing stunt where Sony Pictures decided to paint this all white village into a bright blue to promote the upcoming Smurfs movie. While it was originally supposed to be temporary, they local residents decided to keep it blue as it began attracting more and more visitors.
While I could go on and on about the many other colorful and picturesque places in Europe, the places I mentioned above are just a few of my top favorites! How about you? Where are your favorite colorful places in Europe?
Looking for more Europe inspiration? Check out our other articles for more tips!
- 15 of the Most Beautiful Cities in Europe
- How I survived Europe on a Budget
- Best Places to Visit Europe