Have you thought about moving to Europe? It can be a blessing and a curse that the continent has so many different cultures that are so close to each other. After all, with so many good places to choose from, how can one decide where to settle? This list of the best places to live in Europe will hopefully help you narrow down your search and choose the perfect place for you:
1. Berlin, Germany
This mention is perhaps the least surprising, given that Kristin has been living here for five years. Still, there are many reasons why Berlin is a fantastic place for foreigners. First of all, it is one of the strongest creative hubs in Europe, not to mention Germany, which is home to people from all over the world, many of them creative people looking to share their work with a willing audience.
It is also home to hundreds of museums, cafes, galleries, theaters and much more. There are so many things to do in Berlin that you can almost guarantee that you will never get bored. Whether you want to visit a Christmas market in winter or explore the city’s parks in summer, there is no shortage of opportunities for residents throughout the year. There are also a lot of great places where you can take a road trip just outside the city, in matter the crowds get overwhelming.
Who is it best for: creatives, digital nomads, LGBTQ+ people
Cost of living: Berlin can be quite expensive to live in, compared to other European cities, but is usually about the same as American cities like Chicago, for example.
Pros: awesome art, music and cultural scene. Great location with easy access to other cities in Germany.
Cons: Berlin has higher powered crime rates than most other major cities in Europe, but not walking around at night is a great way to avoid this. It can also be more difficult to adapt here if you don’t speak German or at least try, because older residents are more resistant to foreigners, especially those who don’t speak the language.
2. Inexpensive Flights To Braga, Portugal
As the third largest city in Portugal, Braga has everything that makes the country special, with an atmosphere that is not overwhelming. It is considered the happiest city in Portugal, which you will probably be able to feel as soon as you arrive. In general, the people of Braga are warm and welcoming to foreigners, so don’t be surprised if you are invited to a cup of coffee and pastel de nata by a neighbor.
Braga is full of culture, including historical sites, museums and restaurants galore. Due to the spacious green areas of the city, the rich gastronomy and the warm hospitality, it is not surprising that the quality of life here is higher than in any other city in Portugal. If that doesn’t make Braga one of the best places to live in Europe, I don’t know what is!
For whom it is best: entrepreneurs (especially in technology and hospitality), families, gourmets, digital nomads
Cost of living: Almost all cities in Portugal have a relatively low cost of living compared to other European countries. The one in Braga is lower than Lisbon and Porto, but higher than the small towns and villages in the countryside.
Pros: good food, vibrant culture, excellent hospitality and good weather
Cons: Braga is located inland, far from the beaches of Portugal. The Portuguese economy is also in recession and it can be difficult to find a job here.
3. Athens, Greece
In recent years, Athens has become increasingly popular among digital nomads. As such, the city is full of coworking spaces and international schools. Although the Greek islands seem much more idyllic and pleasant to live on, Athens is actually a much better choice for foreigners. The islands do not have such a reliable internet connection and tend to be crowded with tourists, especially in summer. Athens has better Internet, better infrastructure and better access to transport.
Another attractive feature of the Greek capital is that about half of its inhabitants speak at least partially fluent English, which makes it easier for non-Greeks to adapt. However, it is still worth learning the language, and the inhabitants of Athens will definitely appreciate it. Athens also has an excellent food and nightlife scene, which makes it an excellent choice for young people.
For whom it is best: young people, families, digital nomads, retirees
Cost of living: for a European capital, Athens is quite affordable. However, it is much more expensive to live here than other cities in Greece, such as Corfu or Kefalonia.
Pros: very sociable, excellent food, good Internet, lots of things to do
Cons: can be noisy, rent is expensive downtown and many public services like health care are plagued by bureaucracy.
4. Málaga, Spain
You’ve heard of Madrid, Barcelona, Ibiza and other famous places in Spain, but have you heard of Malaga? This sunny city on the southern coast of Spain has the highest concentration of museums per square kilometer than any other in Europe. It is full of history and culture, with a rich traditional gastronomy that places it on the map as an ideal place for foreigners to choose as a new home.
For a big city, Málaga has a relaxed atmosphere that is ideal for people looking for the amenities that an urban area offers, without too much hustle and bustle. Here you will also find quiet beaches perfect for relaxation and socialization. Maybe you should learn Spanish if you want to live in Málaga, because there are fewer English speakers here than in other cities in the country.
Who is it best for: Families, digital nomads, retirees, LGBTQ+ people
Cost of Living: The cost of living in Málaga is similar to that in Braga, Portugal. It’s affordable to live there than in big cities like Madrid and Barcelona, but it’s by far not the lowest in Europe.
Pros: very open-minded, culturally rich, lots of outdoor activities
Cons: It can be difficult to find good quality housing because most of the buildings are old and very expensive for tenants to repair.
5. Florence, Italy
The Italian region of Tuscany has the reputation of being the second or third home of many celebrities. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a millionaire or a millionaire to live a good life in the Tuscan countryside. The main reason why the quality of life here is so high is due to the abundance of fresh products and locally made ingredients that are characteristic of Tuscan gastronomy. That, and its incredibly beautiful nature throughout.
The small Tuscan villages such as Lucca and Pistoia are particularly ideal for those looking for a little piece of paradise in the countryside. Life here is a bit slower, but there are still many cultural events, museums and galleries to enjoy.
Who is it best for: retirees, families, digital nomads
Cost of living: between Florence and Siena, the cost of living is very high. However, the small villages are very affordable compared to the rest of Italy.
Pros: fresh food, rural charm, rich culture, great opportunity to be part of a small community
Cons: if you choose a small village, you will have to learn Italian. It is also not ideal for young people who want to lead a lively social life.
6. Dubrovnik, Croatia
Considered one of the most beautiful places in Europe, Dubrovnik offers medieval architecture, cobalt blue sea, and mountain views. These are partly the reason why so many people like to visit for a holiday. Is it a good place to live? Absolutely! There is a lot to do in Dubrovnik, between the good food and the seemingly limitless things to do, to keep any newcomer on their toes. In addition, the beaches are awesome and there are many natural places just outside the city to escape.
Croatia is also one of the safest countries in the world, which makes Dubrovnik an excellent choice for solo travelers looking for a place in Europe to settle down for a while. It is also a very comfortable place to live because Croats like to spend quality time with their friends and family, usually over a delicious meal and a glass of local plonk.
For whom it is best: young people, students, digital nomads, families
Cost of living: Living in Dubrovnik is more expensive than in other parts of Croatia, but it is about half the cost of other countries, such as England, France, and parts of Spain and Portugal.
Pros: excellent welcome, good weather, access to nature, lively artistic culture
Cons: The daily bureaucracy of life in Dubrovnik can be difficult to navigate as a foreigner. From health care to renting an apartment, there’s a lot to learn before you go. In addition, learning Croatian may be necessary in the long term, and it is a very difficult language to learn.