Complete Travel guide to Cheapest European Countries to Visit. Explore the Budget-Friendly Destinations for 2024
If you’re looking for the cheapest countries to visit in Europe , you’re at the right place. Europe has plenty of destinations to suit each taste. Unfortunately, many such destinations – particularly those in famous European countries such as France, Germany, and Holland – can stretch your money further. If you are looking at Europe’s cheapest places and country for vacation, you must think beyond that. List a few of the best places to visit in Europe at an affordable price.
This article will provide comprehensive guide to the cheapest European countries to visit or live in. These countries provide unique opportunities to explore their beautiful landscapes, diverse cultures, and rich histories. Whether you’re a traveler seeking new adventures or an inexpensive place to call home, these countries should be on your radar.
Charming Capital City
Tirana, Albania’s capital city, is rapidly transforming into a vibrant and cosmopolitan destination. You can spend your days sipping coffee at the many espresso bars, enjoying its booming nightlife, and diving into the developing digital nomad scene. Take a stroll around Skanderbeg Square to soak up the rich history and marvel at the colorful buildings that surround it. As one of the cheapest places in Europe, Tirana is perfect for budget travelers wanting to experience the perks of a European capital without breaking the bank.
UNESCO Heritage Sites
Albania is home to several UNESCO heritage sites worth visiting during your trip. Some notable ones include the ancient city of Butrint, the historic centers of Berat and Gjirokastra, and the Koman Lake. Exploring these sites allows you to delve into the country’s rich history and culture while still keeping an eye on your budget.
Albania offers nature lovers a wide range of natural parks to explore. The most popular ones include Divjaka-Karavasta National Park, Llogara National Park, and Theth National Park. You can enjoy hiking, bird-watching, and admiring stunning landscapes without spending a fortune.
The cost of visiting Albania is pocket-friendly, with accommodation prices ranging from $25-300 per night, transportation costs varying between $0.4 (public transport) to $20 (private taxi), and food prices from $2 (fast food) to $150 (luxury dinner). This makes it an ideal destination for travelers on a budget who want to experience the beauty and culture of Europe without draining their wallets.
2. North Macedonia
North Macedonia is a hidden gem in Europe, offering travelers a plethora of historic landmarks to visit. One such site is the ancient city of Stobi, which showcases well-preserved Roman mosaics and architecture. Another must-visit location is the UNESCO World Heritage site, Ohrid. This picturesque town has numerous churches and monasteries that you can explore, such as the beautiful Church of St. John the Theologian.
While visiting North Macedonia, don’t miss the chance to explore the Fortress Kale, a medieval stronghold that boasts incredible panoramic views of Skopje, the capital city. The Stone Bridge, a landmark that dates back to the 15th century and connects the old and new parts of Skopje, is another notable site worth seeing.
North Macedonia has plenty to offer if you’re looking for stunning landscapes. One of the top destinations for nature lovers is the Mavrovo National Park. This sprawling park is home to diverse flora and fauna, making it the perfect spot for hiking and wildlife watching.
The Osogovo Mountains, with their highest peak, Ruen, should also be on your list. These mountains provide a unique experience, as the mountaintop allows you to be in two countries simultaneously. Pristine trails and spectacular views add to the charm of this stunning destination.
North Macedonia is affordable and rich in history and natural beauty. By exploring its historic landmarks and breathtaking countryside, you’re sure to create unforgettable memories during your visit.
|Cost to Visit
Montenegro is a beautiful country with stunning landscapes that won’t break the bank. While touring the country, you’ll find majestic mountains, serene lakes, and breathtaking canyons. The Accursed Mountains offer dramatic scenery, perfect for hiking and discovering lesser-known regions of Europe. In addition to the mountains, Montenegro is home to the largest canyon in Europe, Tara Canyon. Exploring the canyon, you can raft along the Tara River for an unforgettable adventure.
The coastline of Montenegro is another gem not to be missed. With picturesque towns and pristine beaches, this area offers a perfect mix of relaxation and culture. A UNESCO World Heritage site, Kotor is nestled between mountains and the stunning Bay of Kotor. Stroll through the charming old town, and don’t forget to hike up to the ancient fortress for incredible bay views.
The towns of Budva and Perast also boast beautiful coastlines to discover. You can enjoy sandy beaches, nightlife, and a historic old town in Budva. Perast, a small fishing village, offers a more relaxed atmosphere with its gorgeous baroque architecture and proximity to Our Lady of the Rocks island.
When planning your budget-friendly European tour, include Montenegro in your itinerary. Its scenic landscapes and coastal beauty will leave you mesmerized without damaging your wallet.
Budget Breakdown for Montenegro
*Note: This table is an estimate and costs might vary depending on your traveling preferences.
Slovakia, a hidden gem in Central Europe, is home to numerous stunning castles that play a significant role in its rich history. A visit to this country wouldn’t be complete without exploring some architectural masterpieces, such as Spiš Castle and Orava Castle. Both are excellent examples of medieval fortifications and offer an intriguing insight into Slovakia’s past. As you wander through these ancient structures, you’ll be transported back in time and marvel at their impressive design.
Apart from its captivating castles, Slovakia also boasts a thriving wine culture. The country’s vineyards are often in scenic landscapes, providing a perfect backdrop for leisure exploration. You can visit wine regions with distinct characteristics and indulge in local grape varieties unique to Slovakia. Enjoy a friendly tasting experience at one of the many family-owned wineries and learn about Slovakian wine production’s rich history and traditions.
Visiting Slovakia does not have to break the bank – you can expect to spend approximately $106 per day on your trip, making it an affordable destination for budget-conscious travelers. Planning carefully and taking advantage of the country’s natural beauty, historic sites, and warm hospitality can create an unforgettable experience without emptying your wallet.
Here is a breakdown of the costs for visiting Slovakia compared to other cheapest European countries:
As you embark on your Slovakian adventure, remember to immerse yourself in the country’s fascinating history, lush landscapes, and inviting vineyards. Slovakia truly is a traveler’s paradise waiting to be discovered.
Romania is budget-friendly, offering many scenic locations, historical sites, and unique experiences. This section will focus on two fantastic experiences for travelers: the Transylvania Tour and the Black Sea Excursions.
Transylvania is a region in Romania known for its stunning landscapes, medieval towns, and, of course, the legend of Dracula. When planning your visit, be sure to include these fascinating spots:
- Bran Castle: Also known as Dracula’s Castle, this famous site is a must-see. You can explore the castle’s interior and learn about the history of the legendary vampire.
- Sighisoara: This picturesque town is the birthplace of Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Dracula. Walk through its well-preserved medieval streets, admire the colorful houses, and visit the historic Clock Tower.
- Corvin Castle: One of the largest castles in Europe, Corvin Castle is an impressive fortress featuring Gothic architecture and beautiful courtyards.
Black Sea Excursions
The Black Sea coast of Romania offers stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife, and relaxing seaside resorts. Consider adding these activities to your itinerary:
- Mamaia: Romania’s most famous beach resort, Mamaia, is the perfect place to soak up the sun, enjoy water sports, and experience the nightlife.
- Constanta: This ancient city is home to the historical Museum of National History and Archaeology, the stunning Constanta Casino, and the picturesque Tomis Harbor.
- Danube Delta: A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Danube Delta is a natural paradise filled with unique flora and fauna. Enjoy a river cruise or birdwatching tour to appreciate its beauty.
While visiting Romania, you will find various hidden gems to explore. So pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable adventure!
Serbia is a hidden gem among the cheapest countries in Europe to visit. Its rich history and vibrant cities offer plenty of options for budget travelers. One must-visit destination during your budget vacation in Serbia is the historic city of Belgrade. The capital has a unique blend of ancient and modern architecture, which you can enjoy without breaking the bank.
To help you plan your budget trip to Serbia, here is a friendly breakdown of the estimated costs you might incur:
|Accommodation (Budget Hostels)
|10-20 per night
|Meals (Local Restaurants)
|5-10 per meal
|1-3 per trip
|Attractions (Museums, Tours)
|3-10 per attraction
Discover the charm of Serbia’s past by strolling through the narrow streets of Belgrade’s old town, Kalemegdan Park, and Belgrade Fortress without any admission fees. A visit to the Church of Saint Sava, one of the largest Orthodox churches in the world, is also a must-see.
Don’t forget to explore the city’s lively nightlife, as Belgrade is known for its bustling bars and clubs that cater to various musical tastes. Many have no entry fees, making diving into the local party scene easy.
Regarding food, Serbian cuisine has plenty to offer, including affordable, delicious treats like pljeskavica (Serbian-style burger) and ćevapi (grilled minced meat). Tuck into these delights at local fast-food restaurants and bakeries.
So, pack your bags and get ready to experience the beauty of Serbia while keeping your budget in check!
7. Bosnia and Herzegovina
Diverse Cultural Experiences
Bosnia and Herzegovina are hidden gems in Europe, offering a mix of historical influences and stunning natural beauty. While visiting this enchanting country, you’ll not only enjoy affordability but also experience unique cultural experiences.
Sarajevo is the capital city of Bosnia and Herzegovina and showcases a distinct “east meets west” atmosphere. Its fascinating history and vibrant streets characterize this city. You’ll be mesmerized by the historic old town market of Baščaršija, where you can find traditional crafts and delicious food and immerse yourself in the local lifestyle.
If you’re passionate about history, don’t miss the opportunity to learn about the Bosnian genocide and the Srebrenica massacre from 1992 – 1995. Visit the Mostar museum to see the victims’ photos, documents, and personal belongings, helping you understand the tragic events that unfolded during that time.
Nature lovers will appreciate Bosnia and Herzegovina’s breathtaking landscapes, considered a playground for hikers. With dozens of mountains and numerous hiking trails, you’ll find an adventure that suits your taste.
|Cost to Visit
|Bosnia & Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina should be on your list if you’re looking for a friendly, affordable, and culturally diverse destination for your next vacation. Now that you have valuable information about this European gem, why not start planning your unforgettable trip?
Croatia is becoming a popular tourist destination and offers budget-friendly travel experiences. In this section, we’ll cover its stunning beaches and historical tours.
Croatia is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and enjoying the Adriatic coast. You don’t need to break the bank to experience these beaches, as many are free or have minimal entry fees. Some must-visit beaches include:
- Zlatni Rat: A unique, picturesque beach located on the island of Brač, famous for its ever-changing shape due to ocean currents.
- Banje Beach: A famous sandy beach near Dubrovnik, offering impressive views of the city’s famous Old Town.
- Sakarun Beach: Located on Dugi Otok island, this peaceful beach offers crystal-clear water and a tranquil atmosphere.
Croatia has a rich history and is home to many UNESCO World Heritage sites, making it an excellent destination for those interested in historical tours. Some of the most notable places to visit include:
- Dubrovnik: Known for its historic Old Town, limestone streets, and Game of Thrones filming locations, Dubrovnik is a must-visit city during your trip to Croatia. See St. Blaise Church and Sponza Palace while you’re there.
- Split: This coastal city is known for the ancient Diocletian’s Palace and the stunning St. Domnius Cathedral. You can explore the city’s fascinating history without spending a fortune.
When planning your trip to Croatia, keep in mind that it’s cheapest to visit outside of high season (late June to late August) and consider shoulder season months (May and September) for the best balance between lower prices and pleasant weather sources.
Remember, you can enjoy stunning beaches and historical tours in Croatia without breaking the bank. Embrace this beautiful country and its pocket-friendly travel experiences.
Bulgaria, a hidden gem in Eastern Europe, offers travelers an affordable yet delightful European experience. Bulgaria should be on your must-visit list with its rich history, stunning landscapes, and affordable prices. The vibrant capital city, Sofia, makes an excellent starting point for exploring the country.
You can enjoy historic and modern attractions in Sofia without breaking the bank. Visit the iconic St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, a masterpiece of Orthodox architecture, and wander through the picturesque streets of the Old Town. You can also take free walking tours to learn more about the city’s fascinating history.
Bulgarian cuisine is another great reason to plan a trip to Sofia. Enjoy delicious, hearty meals like banitsa, a tasty pastry filled with cheese, or kavarma, a tender, slow-cooked meat dish. Trying local dishes won’t empty your wallet, as you can find excellent meals at reasonable prices in various restaurants and marketplaces.
Accommodation options in Sofia are plentiful, with budget-friendly choices ranging from hostels to affordable hotels. If you’re looking for a more traditional experience, consider staying in a guest house to immerse yourself in the local hospitality.
Here’s a breakdown of approximate costs when visiting Bulgaria:
|$15 – $45 per night
|$5 – $15 per meal
|$3 – $10 per day
|$0 – $10 per activity
Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a foodie, or just looking for an affordable European escape, Bulgaria, especially Sofia, has something to offer. Now it’s time to pack your bags and prepare for an unforgettable, budget-friendly adventure in this captivating country.
Hungary, primarily its capital, Budapest, is known for being an affordable destination for travelers. The city offers impressive attractions, delicious cuisine, and a vibrant nightlife. Here are some of the must-see highlights on a budget:
- Buda Castle: This historic castle complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offers stunning views of the Danube River and the Pest side of the city. Entrance to the Castle District is free; however, entry to some museums inside the complex may require a fee.
- Fisherman’s Bastion: This iconic landmark provides panoramic views of Budapest. A visit to the lower terraces is complimentary, while the upper decks charge a minimal fee.
- The Great Market Hall: This three-story marketplace is an excellent place to interact with locals, witness the unique Hungarian architecture, and enjoy traditional Hungarian street food at reasonable prices.
A visit to Budapest is incomplete without indulging in the city’s famous thermal baths. Luckily, these unique experiences can be enjoyed without breaking the bank:
- Gellért Baths: Famous for its Art Nouveau architecture, Gellért Baths offers a variety of indoor and outdoor pools with different temperatures. Entry fees vary depending on the day and time of your visit but can range from €16 to €20 (approx. $18-22).
- Széchenyi Baths: As one of Europe’s largest thermal bath complexes, Széchenyi Baths has 18 pools and a picturesque setting. Daily tickets cost around €20 (approx. $22).
- Rudas Baths: Originating from the 16th century, Rudas Baths provide a more traditional experience. Their stunning octagonal pool sits beneath a dome adorned with skylights. A full-day ticket during weekdays is about €16 (approx. $18), with slightly higher prices on weekends.
To keep your Hungarian adventure affordable and enjoyable, consider visiting some of the mentioned attractions and relaxing in Budapest’s healing thermal baths.
Poland is a fantastic destination for budget travelers, offering a rich cultural experience and stunning landscapes without breaking the bank. In the capital city of Warsaw, you’ll find fascinating history, dynamic architecture, and a vibrant atmosphere.
The Warsaw Uprising Museum and the Royal Castle are must-sees for history enthusiasts. Affordable public transportation makes it easy to explore the city. And when you’re ready for a break from sightseeing, you can relax in one of the many charming cafes and try traditional Polish dishes like pierogi or kielbasa at wallet-friendly prices.
Breakdown of costs (in USD):
|$20 – $30
|$10 – $15
|$5 – $10
|$5 – $15
Krakow, Poland’s second-largest city, is steeped in history and culture. With its well-preserved medieval Old Town, an abundance of captivating museums, and the stunning Wawel Castle overlooking the Vistula River, there’s plenty to explore and enjoy.
But it’s not just the sights that make Krakow a budget-friendly destination – your wallet will also thank you for the reasonable accommodation prices, food, and attractions. Check out the local markets for unique and affordable souvenirs to remember your trip.
Breakdown of costs (in USD):
|$20 – $30
|$10 – $15
|$5 – $10
|$5 – $20
So next time you plan a European adventure, don’t overlook Poland. This low-cost cultural hub will provide unique experiences and memories that will last a lifetime.
Portugal, a country known for its rich history and diverse landscapes, is among the most affordable destinations in Western Europe. With bustling cities like Lisbon and Porto, you can experience the vibrant urban atmosphere and the calming allure of its picturesque coastline.
In Lisbon, you can wander through picturesque neighborhoods, like the iconic Alfama district, or explore museums and historical sites without breaking the bank. Public transportation is affordable, with a day pass costing around €6.30, offering unlimited access to buses, trams, and the metro system.
A breakdown of the average costs for a day in Lisbon:
Budget travelers can find plenty of reasonably-priced dining options, including the famous pastel de nata, a delicious Portuguese pastry, for just around €1 each.
Portugal’s second-largest city, Porto, offers an enchanting blend of history, culture, and affordability. The cobbled streets of the riverside quarter Ribeira are perfect for strolling around, admiring the beautiful buildings and vibrant atmosphere.
Sample the famous Port wine at the many wine cellars along the riverside, with tastings typically starting at €5. Marvel at the intricate carvings inside the São Francisco Church, where the entrance fee is only €7.
A typical day in Porto may cost you:
By picking Portugal as your travel destination, you’ll find affordable experiences without compromising on the enchanting charm that this beautiful country has to offer.
Estonia, a beautiful country in Northern Europe, offers a wealth of experiences for budget travelers. Known for its rich history, fascinating culture, and picturesque landscapes, you can enjoy an unforgettable trip without breaking the bank. This section will focus on Tallinn, the captivating Estonian capital that blends ancient charm with modern amenities.
Tallinn, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, showcases stunning architecture and vibrant culture. While exploring the city, you’ll discover its well-preserved medieval Old Town, bustling markets, and quaint cafes. Venturing further from the city center, you’ll find serene forest parks and beautiful beaches perfect for relaxing on a sunny day.
When planning your trip, consider staying in budget-friendly accommodations such as hostels or guesthouses, readily available throughout Tallinn. To save on food, try visiting local markets and supermarkets to prepare your meals or indulge in the hearty and affordable traditional Estonian cuisine at local eateries.
Getting around Tallinn is affordable, thanks to its efficient public transportation system. Opt for a city travel card to enjoy unlimited rides on buses, trams, and trolleybuses at a low cost. Alternatively, consider renting a bike or exploring the city on foot, as many attractions are within walking distance.
Here’s an example of a budget breakdown for a day in Tallinn:
Ultimately, Estonia offers an affordable and enriching European travel experience. By prioritizing budget-friendly options and immersing yourself in the local culture, you can explore the best of what Tallinn and Estonia offer without straining your wallet.
14. Czech Republic
The Czech Republic is a beautiful and affordable European destination, offering a rich history, stunning architecture, and delicious cuisine.
As you wander through the cobblestone streets of Prague, the Czech Republic’s capital city, you’ll notice the city’s enchanting blend of Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque architecture. Don’t miss the iconic Charles Bridge, the striking Astronomical Clock, and the imposing Prague Castle.
While walking along the banks of the Vltava River or getting lost in the labyrinthine streets of the Old Town, you’ll find reasonably priced restaurants, cafes, and bars where you can experience authentic Czech dishes and enjoy the famous Czech beer Pilsner Urquell. The city is also known for its thriving art scene and vibrant nightlife, with affordable admission to galleries, museums, and entertainment venues.
|Cost (in Euros)
|20 – 40
|Meals (per day)
|10 – 20
|3 – 5
|Sightseeing & Attractions
|5 – 15
This budget-friendly destination offers a unique European experience without breaking the bank. So pack your bags and get ready to explore the charming Czech Republic, its captivating capital, and the memorable Prague Promenade.
Visiting Slovenia is a great choice if you’re on a budget and looking for a European destination that offers natural beauty, charming cities, and rich cultural experiences. In this section, we will focus on the capital city, Ljubljana, and give you some tips on making the most of your visit while keeping costs low.
Despite being Slovenia’s capital city, Ljubljana feels more like a charming small town. You will love this beautiful city with its picturesque old town, lively markets, and stunning architecture. To keep your trip budget-friendly, consider the following tips:
- Accommodation: Look for affordable hostels or guesthouses in the city. You can find rooms for as low as €20 per night, which can help you save money for other experiences.
- Transportation: Walking and biking are the best ways to explore Ljubljana, as the city is very pedestrian-friendly. If you need to use public transport, consider purchasing an Urbana card, which allows you to travel on buses, trams, and funiculars at a reduced price.
- Food: To taste Slovenian cuisine without breaking the bank, visit the open-air Ljubljana Central Market. Here, you can find delicious, locally-produced food at reasonable prices. Enjoy a traditional Slovenian burek (pastry filled with meat, cheese, or vegetables) or a klobasa (Slovenian sausage) from a street vendor.
- Attractions: Many of Ljubljana’s main attractions are free or low-cost. Stroll along the Ljubljanica River, explore beautiful Tivoli Park, or take in the city’s architecture by visiting the famous Triple Bridge.
Here’s an example of a budget breakdown for visiting Slovenia:
|Total (per day)
By following these tips and keeping an eye on your spending, you can enjoy a memorable trip to Ljubljana and Slovenia without breaking the bank. Happy exploring!
Lithuania, a small yet stunning country in northeastern Europe, offers a mix of rich history, beautiful landscapes, and vibrant cities. The combination of low costs and unique experiences make it a must-visit destination for budget-conscious travelers.
The capital city, Vilnius, is a perfect starting point for your Lithuanian adventure. It boasts an enchanting Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, filled with narrow cobblestone streets, stunning baroque architecture, and cozy cafés.
While exploring the city, visit the Gediminas’ Tower for panoramic views and the exquisite St. Anne’s Church. Art lovers will appreciate the flourishing street art scene, especially the iconic “Republic of Užupis” – an artists’ district with its playful constitution.
To help you budget your trip, here’s a breakdown of the average costs for a visit to Lithuania:
|Approximate Cost per Day
Friendly locals and affordable prices make Lithuania an ideal destination for travelers exploring a lesser-known European gem. Remember to immerse yourself in the rich Lithuanian culture, taste traditional dishes, and enjoy your journey through this incredible country.
Latvia is a beautiful and budget-friendly European destination, offering travelers a perfect blend of nature, history, and affordability. Nestled on the Baltic Sea between Lithuania and Estonia, this underrated country provides a picturesque landscape, wide sandy beaches, ancient castles, and dense forests to explore.
The capital city, Riga, is a must-see destination during your visit to Latvia. With its rich history, stunning architecture, and vibrant nightlife, Riga won’t disappoint. Stroll through the Old Town’s cobbled streets, admire the Art Nouveau buildings, and venture into the Central Market, where you can find delicious local treats and artisan products.
Latvia offers affordable accommodations and activities, making it the perfect option for budget-conscious travelers. In comparison to other European countries, you can expect to spend around €113 ($121) per day on your vacation, including meals, transportation, and entrance fees for various attractions.
|Average Daily Cost
In summary, visiting Latvia allows you to experience the beauty of the Baltic region without breaking the bank. With its stunning landscapes, intriguing history, and affordable prices, this gem of Europe is worth considering for your next adventure.
Explore Greece’s rich history and vibrant culture by starting your journey in Athens. Home to ancient sites like the Parthenon and modern delights like delicious Greek cuisine. Here’s a cost breakdown for a visit to Athens:
|€20 – €60 per night
|€10 – €25 per meal
|€10 – €25 per site
|€5 – €15 per day
Wander through the streets of Plaka, indulge in mouth-watering souvlaki at Monastiraki Square, and soak in the views from the iconic Acropolis. The city welcomes travelers with open arms, making it an affordable and exciting destination.
Spain, a country where history, culture, and culinary delights blend seamlessly, offers a captivating experience for every traveler. Begin your Spanish adventure in Barcelona, where Gaudi’s architectural masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia, awaits. Here’s a cost breakdown for a visit to Barcelona:
|€30 – €80 per night
|€12 – €30 per meal
|€15 – €30 per site
|€8 – €20 per day
Stroll down La Rambla, relax on the sun-soaked beaches of the Mediterranean coast, and devour delectable tapas in vibrant neighborhoods like El Raval and Gracia. Spain’s irresistible charm and friendly atmosphere make it a budget-friendly destination that should not be missed on your European adventure.