City walking: 8 destinations in Europe to enjoy by foot
Walking is not only the most sustainable way of urban mobility, but also the best way to discover the secrets of a city and savor its atmosphere.
City walking is beneficial in many ways: it increases the opportunities for socializing, decreases the economic weight and environmental impact of travel, helps to stay fit and allows you to visit even the most hidden corners of a destination. Here are 8 pedestrian-friendly European cities, to be discovered step by step: wear some comfortable shoes and get to know places and people in depth.
City walking in Venice
Among the “walking cities” the position of honor belongs to Venice: thanks to its canals, it is by nature completely car-free. Instead of four-wheeled vehicles, for fast movements Venice offers boats and gondolas but, if you are not in a hurry and want to discover the most fascinating corners of the Venetian Sestieri, you should move your feet. Because Venice is not just St. Mark’s Square, but a maze of streets, bridges and squares full of architectural beauty and original shops.
City walking in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is considered the Venice of the North: to grasp its unique charm, you can walk along one of the canals that run for over 100 kilometers around the historic Dam Square and the baroque Royal Palace that overlooks it. You will be able to admire splendid Renaissance-style buildings, visit internationally renowned museums and take advantage of countless opportunities for fun. However, we advise you not to walk on the cycle paths: hindering the traffic of bicycles could make you risk your safety.
City walking in Barcelona
Another European city suitable for long walks is Barcelona. Around the Rambla, the beating heart of the Catalan metropolis, there is a large pedestrian area that allows you to walk safely from Barceloneta beach to Plaza de Cataluña passing through countless points of tourist interest, shops, restaurants and street artists. By foot you can reach the Gothic Quarter, where there are many churches and historical monuments, and you can make the most of various cultural and leisure opportunities.
City walking in Marseille
Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilizations (Mucem) in Marseille
The nerve center of Marseille is the Old Port: among the picturesque colored houses that surround it, excellent restaurants await you, where you can taste the freshest fish and seafood. To grasp the cosmopolitan character of the city, don’t miss a visit to the Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilizations, located at the northern entrance of the harbor inlet. A little further north lies Le Panier, the oldest area of Marseille, where Jean-Claude Izzo was born: walking through the narrow streets of this neighborhood you will not only relive the atmosphere of his novels, but you will be able to discover various typical shops and appreciate unique views.
City walking in Bologna
Around Piazza Maggiore, the heart of the city of Bologna, there are about 40 km of porticoes, also accessible to people on wheelchairs: rolling or walking among columns and capitals you will discover all the top must-to-see landmarks of the city.
Taking the portico that leads to Colle della Guardia, which with its 3,800 meters is the longest in the world, you can visit the Sanctuary of the Beata Vergine di San Luca, a place of Marian worship built starting from the twelfth century.
Along the Sentiero dei Brégoli, an ancient mule track immersed in the woods, you can then reach the Talon Park, which extends along the right bank of the Reno river: if you want to take a refreshing swim, here you will find the equipped beaches of Lido di Casalecchio.
City walking in Granada
Only by walking will you be able to fully experience the rich cultures and traditions of Granada. Take a walk among the houses carved out of white stone rocks of the Sacromonte district, or among the cármenes, the typical houses surrounded by orchards and blossoming gardens of the Arab-medieval quarter of the Albayzin, declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
Then take your steps up to the Alhambra, a fortified citadel built on top of a hill during the period of Arab domination, to the Generalife, a scenic royal garden full of fountains, streams, plants and flowers, and to the Cathedral of Granada, a splendid example of the different architectural styles that coexist harmoniously in the city: the structure is gothic, the main facade is baroque while the dome of the main chapel is in Renaissance style.
City walking in Genoa
There is only one way to grasp the soul of Genoa: walking along the alleys of the largest historic center in Europe and savor them slowly, like a local. Strolling with your nose upwards among these picturesque medieval alleys you will discover authentic architectural treasures, you will meet ancient churches and Renaissance palaces full of precious works of art, you will visit museums suitable for your every interest and passion, you will reach the Porto Antico with the famous Aquarium of Genoa and many other attractions for the whole family: there are countless things to do and things to see in Genoa, especially if you are planning your summer holidays!
City walking in Valencia
Walking through Valencia, the third most populous city in Spain, you will come across numerous testimonies of the different cultures that over the centuries have given a timeless charm to this destination. To know in depth the Valencian Community, plan your holiday during the Fallas, the celebrations dedicated to Saint Joseph which from 1 to 19 March fill the city with colorful masks and fireworks, or one of the other popular festivals that animate the region. Are you undecided on which itinerary to follow? Follow the advice of the spanish poet Antonio Machado:
Wanderer, there is no road, the road is made by walking.
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