Most popular cities in Europe (2015)

Tourists in Rome (by Ed Yourdon)

Tourists in Rome (by Ed Yourdon)

We thought it would be interesting to find out which destinations in Europe are most visited by tourists. If you want to avoid the tourists, you will need the Spotted by Locals guides in these cities for sure!

There are many rankings, but Euromonitor’s recently released study of “international visitor arrivals in 2013” seems to be one of the most reliable.

1. London

The Horse Hospital London (by Matt Bramford)

The Horse Hospital London (by Matt Bramford)

London had 17 million visitors arriving from abroad in 2013.

One spot where you won’t find many tourists: movie theater the Horse Hospital (spotted by Matt Bramford). Find the front door (not easy), ring the bell (first find the door and fake you’re a local: hopefully they’ll let you in!

2. Paris

Street art Paris (by Adam Roberts)

Street art Paris (by Adam Roberts)

With 15 million international arrivals, Paris is the second most visited city in Europe.

Check out this Paris street art tour (free download) by our Spotter Adam – it will take you away from the tourist track for sure!

3. Antalya

Antalya door (by Melissa Maples)

Antalya door (by Melissa Maples)

Big surprise for us! One of the biggest cities in Turkey is not covered by Spotted by Locals yet… Perhaps we should reconsider!

4. Istanbul

Setüstü Tea Garden Istanbul (by Alper Ayden)

Setüstü Tea Garden Istanbul (by Alper Ayden)

Istanbul is hot! 10.5 million foreign visitors a year, and this is growing rapidly.

Setüstü garden, an open air cafe located at the far end of Gülhane Park is a hidden gem away from the hustle and bustle, and it offers one of the best panoramic views of Istanbul. It was spotted by our local Alper Ayden.

5. Rome

R-01-IOS Rome (by Eleonora Baldwin)

R-01-IOS Rome (by Eleonora Baldwin)

Not a surprise to find Rome in this list. It has been touristy since it was built!

Want to bring a cool souvenir? Check out R-01-IOS, a very cool jewelry / accessories store  in the Pigneto neighborhood. Spotted by Eleonora Baldwin.

6. Prague

The Barrandov Terraces Prague (by Štěpán Bärtl)

The Barrandov Terraces Prague (by Štěpán Bärtl)

Prague can get crowded with tourists. Many of the locals prefer other areas. Why not take a walk to some cool but neglected 1920s buildings like one of Štěpán Bärtl’s favorites: The Barrandov Terraces?

7. Milan

Wasabi Bar Milan (by Katharina Ziche)

Wasabi Bar Milan (by Katharina Ziche)

Milan has more visitors than Venice! Although we know Milan is a fantastic city, we didn’t expect this!

Find the cool locals in “Milan’s Williamsburg”, for example in the Wasabi Bar our Spotter Ivan Kalinov likes to visit.

8. Barcelona

El Soplo Barcelona (by Ilse de Ridder)

El Soplo Barcelona (by Ilse de Ridder)

5.5 million visitors from abroad roam the Barcelona Ramblas every year. And a few smart Spotted by Locals Barcelona users go where our locals go, like the El Soplo wine bar which is Ilse de Ridder’s favorite.

9. Moscow

Gorky Park Moscow (by Denis Tretyakov)

Gorky Park Moscow (by Denis Tretyakov)

The Eastern most capital of Europe doesn’t feel touristy, but it’s visited by more than 5 million visitors a year!

Going to Moscow this winter? Bring your skates or rent them at Gorky Park and skate with locals like our Spotter Ilya!

10. Amsterdam

Zuidermarkt Amsterdam (by Jan Verboom)

Zuidermarkt Amsterdam (by Jan Verboom)

I didn’t calculate it, but as Amsterdam is the smallest city on the list (less than 1 million inhabitants) it probably has more tourists per capita visiting their city than any other city.

One spot where you won’t find many tourists: the Zuidermarkt market!

We cover all these cities in Europe (and many more! Check out “our” 50 destinations here).

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Last Changed Date: 2016-05-19 11:45:13 +0200 (Thu, 19 May 2016)