How to Pack 15 World-Class European Cities Into One $500 Trip

Kaci Baum, Unsplash
Kaci Baum, Unsplash / Kaci Baum, Unsplash

If you’re looking to make the most of your vacation days before the year’s end, few destinations offer more bang for your buck than Europe. Every corner of the continent contains its own unique history, architecture, and cuisine, and exploring it on a budget is more feasible than you might think. Using the travel site Wanderu, Thrillist put together an epic 15-city European tour that costs less than $500.

Wanderu pulls price information from different transportation companies across Europe and North America to calculate the cheapest travel costs for individual trips. While it’s not necessarily the fastest way to get around, trekking around Europe by bus is by far the cheapest, and Wanderu makes it easy to compare ticket figures from different bus lines in one convenient spot.

Traveling from one European capital to a city in the next country over can easily be done for less than $50. In some cases, taking a bus across national borders is as cheap as $5. Tourists willing to spend $500 on transportation within the continent can visit as many as 15 world-class cities this way. Thrillist’s ultimate itinerary includes the following destinations, ordered from first stop to last:

London, UK
Brussels, Belgium
Luxembourg City
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Copenhagen, Denmark
Berlin, Germany
Warsaw, Poland
Prague, Czech Republic
Vienna, Austria
Bratislava, Slovakia
Budapest, Hungary
Zagreb, Croatia
Rome, Italy
Bern, Switzerland
Paris, France

With longer legs of the journey lasting close to 20 hours, a trip this ambitious may not work for everyone. If you have limited time to sightsee and an even more limited budget, consider using Wanderu’s Explorer feature. After plugging in your current location and the day you want to leave, the site brings up various cities you could visit for as low as $1.

[h/t Thrillist]