Does Your Favorite European Village Rank?

Back in August I featured a Lonely Planet thread in which travelers listed their favorite off-the-beaten-path train stops in Europe. Recently Travel and Leisure attempted something similar – listing its top 24 most scenic but less-frequented villages in Europe.

Some of the villages included on Travel and Leisures list:

  • Tellaro, Italy
  • Hallstatt, Austria
  • Colmar, France
  • Cong, Ireland

Just to name a few. Of course, one of the best things about a list like this is debating the villages that made the list and those that didn’t.

Colmar is not a village. Colmar is a major city. But in the region, pretty much every town on the Route de Vin Alsace is worthy. We especially like Keysersburg, where a meal at Au Lion d’Or, a family owned restaurant that opened in the 1750s and is still going strong today in the original location is not to missed. That’s right. This restaurant is older than the USA. ~kb0000

If you were wanting to put a real village on this list from the Alsace region, Riquewihr would be a more suitable choice. ~pat_pepper

I was surprised Bled did not make the top 7 but at least it was top 14….there is something amazing about this area of the great little country named Slovenia ~louie.lovsin

also noteworthy are Carcassonne and Mt. St. Michel, both in France. ~denelle

Another village that could easily be added to this list in my opinion is La Roque-Gageac, France (pictured above). It’s an absolutely stunning little village situated right on the Dordogne river, backed by steep cliffs, and lined with stone buildings that look to be directly out of a fairy tell. And if you make it there, do yourself a favor and have a meal at Chef Marc Walker’s La Plume d’Oie. Chef Walker’s philosophy:

Innovation is good, but technology should never take the upper hand. Presentation is integral to the dining experience – but it should never overwhelm. In the end, it’s the taste, created through the use of top quality local ingredients – and there are no short cuts for achieving this.

What villages would you add to this list? Which of Travel and Leisure’s choices do you disagree with?

Read the article and comments in their entirety: Europe’s Most Beautiful Villages

Village entre l’eau et la falaise” by Stephane Mignon. CC BY 2.0.


  1. I’d definitely recommend Obernai, France which is close to Colmar but small and seriously quaint. There are also several pottery shops there with unique and beautiful regional designs which are great for souvenirs that you can actually use.

    And I’m surprised and happy to see my son recommending La Roque-Gageac and the restaurant there. I didn’t know you were taking notes on that trip!

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