5 ways to escape the crowds on your European holiday

Europe has been at the top of the travel must-visit list for 2023, and it seems that 2024 is shaping up to be more of the same.

Destinations such as Paris, London, Florence and anywhere along the Mediterranean coastline are absolutely worth including on your itinerary. Here at SJT, we think it's less about avoiding these populated and sometimes crowded places and more about how and when you can include them.

From boutique hotels, small-ship cruising, staying on the city fringe to including a more remote destination or exploring off-the-beaten-path, here are five less-crowded suggestions to include in your next European adventure.

londoner amy

A London Oasis

Spend your day experiencing London's unique energy and pace, then escape it by stepping through the doors and into a world of tranquil luxury at The Londoner.

Located in the heart of Leicester Square and a short walk to the vibrant West End, The Londoner is a five-star super-boutique hotel and a true oasis. Featuring 350 rooms and suites, six concept eateries and bars, three guest-only parlour rooms at The Residence, a wellness retreat, and so much more, once you step through the front doors of the Londoner you need never leave again! For London's best location combined with a sense of calm and space, look no further than The Londoner.

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Cruising Europe Without the Crowds

Smaller ships mean smaller ports, shorter queues, longer stays... and one of the best in the business for European cruising is Regent Seven Seas Cruises. The Regent experience is about intuitive and personalised service. With a staff-to-guest ratio average of 1:1, five dining venues and spacious onboard facilities, there is never a queue or a crowd, making travel even easier!

Regent include a large selection of immersive shore excursions across 500-plus ports of call around the world, meaning no hustling with local operators at the port and no queuing with 3000 other passengers to disembark. All of this combines to make cruising in Europe even more enjoyable, and much less stressful, even in the busy summer months.


Greenland, Land of Ice

Did you know that Greenland is the world's largest island? Its nickname "Land of Ice" is aptly chosen due to its stunning landscapes that are dominated by ice and snow. Greenland is one of THE spots to witness the Northern Lights, with its dark winter nights and clear skies providing excellent opportunities for an extraordinary light display.

Looking to travel to Greenland? SJT recommends Quark Expeditions, who are polar adventure and expedition cruise specialists. Their Greenland itineraries take in glaciers, fjords, the unique culture and wildlife, as well as opportunities to spot the Northern Lights. With just 5% of the tourist numbers compared to Iceland, a Greenland expedition offers travellers a less crowded exploration of this remote and pristine Arctic region.


A Tuscan Villa Stay

Combine the beauty and the quiet of a Tuscan villa stay with Florence on your doorstep at the beautiful Villa La Massa.

Set on the banks of the Arno River and surrounded by 25 acres of gardens, Villa La Massa offers a peaceful and elegant retreat for travellers. The Tuscan countryside extends as far as the eye can see; olive trees, vineyards and cypresses fill the landscape with their unique colours and scents.

This peaceful oasis is in the heart of the Chianti region and just a stone's throw away from Florence's city centre. Guests can take the complimentary shuttle from the villa to the Ponte Vecchio in the heart of the city. Spend your day visiting the galleries and museums before returning to your villa for an aperitif overlooking the river. It’s the ideal tranquil and luxurious Tuscan escape!


Escape to the French Countryside

If you are seeking a taste of authentic French culture and a serene escape without having to deal with crowds, then head to the Dordogne. Named after the Dordogne River, which flows through the heart of area, it is known for its natural beauty, medieval towns and villages, castles and culinary delights.

The Dordogne region is a picturesque and historically rich area located in southwestern France. Combining well on an itinerary with visits to Bordeaux and Paris, SJT can curate a stay in the Dordogne for those keen to explore this beautiful (and less crowded) corner of France.


Hot Tip!
A great way to avoid the crowds - especially in destinations with lots of day-trippers - is to explore before the tourists arrive, and after they have left. Our clients Julie and Peter, spent three weeks in Italy recently, covering all of the "hot spots". Julie said they would head out early, returning to their hotel mid-morning for a late breakfast. They would relax there through the middle of the day and then venture back out mid-afternoon. This way they avoided the heat and the worst of the crowds while still enjoying each destination. It's a sure way to have places like St Mark's Square to yourself!

Ready to escape the crowds on your next European holiday?

Get in Touch!

Office Address - 69 Wardell Street, Ashgrove QLD 4060

Office Hours - By Appointment, Monday-Friday 9am-4pm

Phone - Office 07 3366 1180

Sonia 0450 154 478 | Amy 0405 218 154 | Tiana 0405 842 032


Yours in Travel

Sonia, Amy, Christine, Tiana & Feriel
The Sonia Jones Travel Team

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