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10 Best Cities for Art Lovers in Europe

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The Louvre in Paris, France

The Louvre in Paris, France

Europe abounds with culture from thousands of years of collective heritage, and these best cities for art lovers paint a priceless picture of the region's artistic endeavors.

From Paris to Rome, Bilbao to Berlin, these cities display artwork in elaborate galleries and along the streets as architectural treasures, while museums represent contemporary artists, showcase ancient artisans, and challenge perception with modern designers.

Whether focusing on prehistoric artwork or Roman mosaics, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers or preserved Moorish arches, these must-see cities spotlight emblematic art in Europe.

  1. 1. Florence, Italy
  2. 2. Paris, France
  3. 3. Rome, Italy
  4. 4. London, England
  5. 5. Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  6. 6. Madrid, Spain
  7. 7. Bilbao, Spain
  8. 8. Copenhagen, Denmark
  9. 9. Berlin, Germany
  10. 10. Vienna, Austria
  11. Explore the Best Cities for Art in Europe

1. Florence, Italy

Courtyard at Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy

Courtyard at Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy

Florence is an irresistible city of preserved medieval charm and Renaissance splendor that you can visit after exploring the Italian capital on Rome to Florence tours for art lovers.

Like an open-air museum, the iconic architecture offers surprising masterpieces around every corner, from marble basilicas to 16th-century palaces. Gorgeous chapels glint in candlelight and paintings by Botticelli hang near the works of Donatello.

The city embraces its reputation as the birthplace of the Renaissance, with antique mosaics or standing beneath Michelangelo’s looming David stirring emotion. At the same time, artistic expression translates to culinary culture and the best regional dishes to try in Florence.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Uffizi Gallery • Galleria dell’Accademia • Opera del Duomo • Palazzo Vecchio • Medicine Chapel • Bargello Museum

Learn more: Italy Tours & VacationsItaly Travel Guide

2. Paris, France

Pont Alexandre III and the Grand Palais

The Grand Palais and Pont Alexandre III in Paris, France

Paris is a monument to culture and artistry, with the city preserving France’s commitment to beauty, elegance, and the prestige of the art world.

With grand boulevards lined with monuments, bistros, boutiques, and wine bars, the city’s daily ambiance enhances its tens of thousands of artworks. From those by Da Vinci to Rembrandt, Picasso to Rodin, and the impressionist to abstract, the city embraces and celebrates art through the ages, including reflecting on ancient Mesopotamia and Greek antiquity.

Boasting many of the best art museums in Europe, including the Louvre and d’Orsay, Paris’ must-see places reveal a wealth of quintessential pieces.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Louvre Museum • d’Orsay Museum • Rodin Museum • Museum l’Orangerie • Centre Pompidou • Grand Palais

Learn more: Paris Tours & VacationsFrance Travel Guide

3. Rome, Italy

Michelangelo fresco on the Sistine Chapel ceiling in Vatican City, Italy

Michelangelo fresco on the Sistine Chapel ceiling in Vatican City, Italy

Rome is a masterpiece of layered history and charismatic beauty, with haunting ruins, intoxicating street life, and breathtaking works of art.

Rome's artwork trickles out of the diverse galleries and into the streets, as you navigate one of the world’s largest collections of artifacts, sculptures, religious relics, and paintings in and around the best places to visit in Rome.

From uncovering Etruscan bronzes to Raphael’s frescoes, Baroque sculptures to Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel, Rome does not just host European art, it is European art.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Borghese Gallery • Capitoline Museums • Diocletian Baths • Barberini Palace • Doria Pamphilj Gallery • Villa Farnesina • Vatican Museum

Learn more: Rome Tours & VacationsRome Travel Guide

4. London, England

The National Gallery and Trafalgar Square in London, England

The National Gallery and Trafalgar Square in London, England

London is a city where art celebrates history and history becomes art, culminating in creative experiences perfect for experiencing the top things to do in London as a family.

Boasting some of the best galleries in Europe, London is a pinnacle of contemporary culture and historical heritage. The preserved streets can take you back in time, sparking the imaginings of famous artists, poets, writers, and architects.

From ancient Egyptian artifacts to the Rosetta Stone, leafy suburbs to lively riverbanks, royal palaces to modern vision, the city is a work of dynamic art where the past and present converge.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: The British Museum • Museum of London • Victoria and Albert Museum • The National Gallery • Tate Modern

Learn more: Europe Tours from LondonEngland Travel Guide

5. Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Prinsengracht Canal with the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Prinsengracht Canal with the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Amsterdam is a city of heritage and charm, with art museums and galleries enriching the stories of local, national, and shared European legacy.

Historic homes reflect a colorful cultural charm, while canals add to the artistic ambiance. With approximately 40 museums displaying rare collections and encouraging the preservation of traditional works, Amsterdam blends heritage with modern style.

During a trip to the city, you could view the most extensive collection of Van Gogh’s work or witness the dynamic contrasts of light in Vermeer’s paintings.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Rijksmuseum • Van Gogh Museum • Anne Frank House • Hermitage Amsterdam • Moco Museum

6. Madrid, Spain

Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain

Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain

Madrid, a top city to visit in Spain, is a modern metropolis connected to the classics, celebrating the beauty of Spain’s past with elegant art museums and opulent galleries.

The city has an artistic energy ghosting a pedigree of masterpieces, master artists, master architects, and master chefs.

With artworks on display that once belonged to the Spanish royal family, you can witness a whirlwind collection of the European masters’ diversity or uncover contemporary artists’ brilliant disruption.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Prado Museum • Reina Sofia National Art Museum • Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum • Sorolla Museum

Learn more: Barcelona and Madrid Tours & VacationsSpain Travel Guide

7. Bilbao, Spain

Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain

Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain

Bilbao is a phenomenon of modern art and innovation, and a treasure trove of culinary artistry around the corner from San Sebastian, one of the best places for food in Spain.

With an elaborate heritage of gastronomy rooted in Basque tradition, the city elevates its artistic aesthetic with Michelin-starred restaurants hidden within revitalized historic neighborhoods.

Whether fixated on the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape, the treasured architecture of a contemporary museum, or featured works of Serra, Rothko, and Warhol, Bilbao is a world-class destination for art.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Guggenheim Museum • Museum of Fine Arts • Maritime Museum • Museum of Sacred Art

Learn more: Spain Tours & Vacations

8. Copenhagen, Denmark

The Borsen and Christiansborg Palace on the Islet of Slotsholmen in Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

A mixture of colorful cobblestone streets and sleek contemporary vision, Copenhagen embodies the past and future of Danish culture.

Art can take the form of a Viking ship or chic Scandinavian architecture, regal artworks, or polished historic facades.

With elegant gardens, centuries of established royal design, and cutting-edge exhibits, Denmark is an artistic labyrinth of narrow alleys that lead to seaside vistas or opulent halls that separate glass corridors.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: National Museum of Denmark • Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek • Thorvaldsens Museum • National Gallery of Denmark • ARoS Aarhus Art Museum

Learn more: Scandinavia Tours & Vacations

9. Berlin, Germany

Berlin, Germany

Berlin, Germany

Berlin is the embodiment of eclectic, with a culture that celebrates the present, while acknowledging its past. It is one of the best places to visit in Germany for an art tour.

The mixture of classical and contemporary spreads from design to music, art to theater. The city feels electric, with mesmerizing glamour and captivating grit, fresh frescoes on the Berlin Wall to a former war bunker acting as a contemporary gallery.

With over 150 museums, you can uncover Flemish masters, view notable Italian Renaissance artists, experience new-age chefs, and find Neo-Renaissance structures.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Urban Nation Museum for Urban Contemporary Art • Pergamonmuseum • C/O Berlin • Stasi Museum • Charlottenburg Palace • Hamburger Bahnhof • Martin-Gropius-Bau

Learn more: Germany Tours & VacationsGermany Travel Guide

10. Vienna, Austria

Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, Austria

Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, Austria

Visiting Vienna, a top place in Austria, is to visit an essential part of Europe’s artistic heritage.

Museums date back to the Austrian empire and peek into modernity with representations of contemporary art. Baroque architecture, imperial palaces, and musical masterworks accentuate the city’s unstoppable beauty, connected to the vibrant splendor displayed in the museum galleries.

With opera houses that hosted Mozart and coffee houses that hosted Klimt, Vienna overflows with beauty.

Best Art Galleries and Museums: Kunsthistorisches Museum • Wien Museum • Belvedere Museum • Leopold Museum

Learn more: Austria Tours & VacationsAustria Travel Guide

Explore the Best Cities for Art in Europe

Rembrandt exhibit at Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Rembrandt exhibit at Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Custom Europe tours and vacations are a fantastic way to experience ancient splendor and contemporary vision. With masterpieces in art and architecture, a Europe travel specialist has priceless knowledge in tailoring your trip to your preferences for a personalized experience.

From witnessing celebrated artists to sampling exceptional cuisine, you can find insight and inspiration for your vacation in our Europe travel guide.

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