Europe is packed with historic cathedrals, first-class art museums, and breathtaking scenery, but some travelers place nightlife and party options at the top of their must-see list. From beachside boozing to nightclub dancing, there are some European cities that offer visitors the chance to party from dawn to dusk and dusk to dawn. Here are the eight best party destinations in Europe, so you can squeeze in some fun between sightseeing.
The Mediterranean island of Ibiza is a sexy hot spot known for poolside DJs and nightclubs hosting world-renowned electronic artists. While the historic center of Ibiza Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site, most visitors eschew sightseeing for sunbathing on one of the multiple lovely beaches and drinking at all-inclusive hotels. Don’t miss sunset boozing at one of Sant Antoni de Portmany‘s many bars, and late-night raging at popular clubs like Pacha and Amnesia.
With its 16,000-square-foot spa, indoor and outdoor pools, rooms and suites with swim-up pools, five restaurants, Fender guitar rentals, curated playlists, and a Michelin-star chef, the Hard Rock draws a bevy of celebrity guests and well-heeled couples. Although it can be loud and party-oriented, it’s also kid-friendly, with the Hard Rock Roxity Kids Club, a nursery, and playground.
Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, Germany’s capital has become a center for cutting-edge art and progressive nightlife. All-night partiers love the fact that there’s no law around closing times for bars, and the array of nightlife spots range from techno raves to swing dancing. In line with its cool, trendy scene, many clubs are housed underground and in industrial warehouses that arrive and disappear before they become too well-known. However, one of the city’s most popular spots is Berghain, which is known for its techno, gay-friendly atmosphere, and strict door policy that keeps people returning time and time again in hopes of getting inside.
The 33-room Grand Hostel Berlin is a cut above the average for hostel accommodation, located in an historic Victorian building. It’s in the hip neighborhood of Kreuzberg, opposite a picturesque canal and close to the city’s nightlife scene. There’s a hip library bar just off the lobby, and a restaurant and snack bar on-site too.
While peace-seeking honeymooners typically head to Santorini in Greece, young revelers make their way to party-heavy Mykonos. It has stunning caldera views (though they don’t compare to Santorini’s) and upscale properties, plus lots of beachfront bars that host all-day parties. Tropicana bar on Paradise Beach is a favorite for its wild parties where bathing suit-clad visitors dance to DJ-led music, all while next to the beautiful Mediterranean water.
The 100-room Paradise Beach Resort is a budget-friendly seafront hotel with a vibrant party scene. The beach and its clubs are the main draw, but there are also an on-site restaurant and mini-mart with snacks and sundries. Other options include camping and bare-bones cabins, both with communal bathrooms and lacking AC.
Barcelona has it all: striking Gothic architecture, delicious tapas restaurants, renowned museums, and vibrant nightlife across the city. It’s an ideal destination for travelers who want to get a heavy dose of culture and history during the day, and have a plethora of club and bar choices to party at night. Craft cocktails in Eixample, nightclub raging in the Gothic Quarter, and flamenco shows by the Poble Espanyol museum are all tried-and-true ways to enjoy Barcelona once the sun sets.
Situated on one of the most famous streets in Barcelona, this chic, modern hotel is within walking distance of some of the city’s best sights. The Condes’ 126 rooms have understated, Scandinavian-style decor, large windows, and (in some) private balconies. A delicious restaurant, sexy rooftop lounge, and serene terrace are additional highlights.
Sure, Amsterdam has gained a reputation for its red light district lined with brothels, but there’s a lot more the city has to offer in terms of partying. During the day, places like the Brouwerij ‘t IJ brewery and Wynand Fockink distillery serve booze, while dozens of coffeeshops sell inexpensive marijuana. The evening scene throughout the city is also boisterous, as groups head to see shows at The Waterhole Live Music Bar and Paradiso, or dance at techno and house music clubs.
The Flying Pig Downtown is a friendly, fun-focused Amsterdam hostel. Located on a busy, central shopping street, this hostel is surrounded by many of the city’s nightspots, while also being a short walk to popular sights and the Red Light district.
From world-class cuisine and stylish Scandinavian design, to beautiful architecture and greenery-filled parks, Copenhagen hits the mark across multiple categories. This also rings true for its party scene, which consists of underground music venues, posh bars, and intimate jazz clubs. The Meatpacking District is a trendy spot to go out, though the downtown area is packed with notable spots for imbibing and dancing. Danish pubs also offer a more authentic look at local life.
The three-pearl Absalon Hotel, a 161-room, modern property in Copenhagen, is centrally located in the neighborhood of Vesterbro, a trendy section also known as the Meatpacking District. Light (from big casement windows), color, and charm are in abundance throughout the interiors, which were done by Designer’s Guild, adding a splashy, contemporary look that matches the property’s youthful location.
Situated on the southeastern coast of Cyprus, Ayia Napa is the premier place to party on the island. This resort town manages to pack dozens of bars and clubs into its small area, and the pretty beaches offer scenic spots to recover after a night of drinking and dancing. Most action centers around the main square and strip (Ayias Mavris), where you’ll find Senior Frog’s and Paddy’s Irish Bar. The Castle Club and Soho Club are popular spots with DJs, though travelers can find any type of music or vibe they want in the town.
The 116-room Senator Hotel Apartments is a lower-middle-range hotel that is a good match for the teen and 20-something set, located a short walk to the restaurants and nightlife of Ayia Napa. The hotel has a lively scene with music playing from early in the morning until late at night. There are three separate pools and outdoor bars where guests can socialize.
Within Portugal’s Algarve region — known for sandy beaches, striking cliffs, and warm weather — Albufeira is a nightlife-loving resort town. Although history-lovers may shiver at the souvenir shops and tacky signs that fill the Old Town’s cobblestone streets and Moorish buildings, the abundance of cheap bars, nightclubs, and long stretches of golden sand are great for sun and fun.
The 74-room Hotel Sol e Mar is a mid-range option in an excellent location on the beach in Albufeira’s old town. The beach is easy to access, and the city’s lively restaurants, bars, and shops are within easy walking distance.
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