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9 Underrated Places to Visit in Europe with Nonstop Flights from U.S. Cities

SmarterTravel

If you’re looking to add an off-the-beaten-path European city to your bucket list, check out these nine underrated places to visit in Europe that are accessible via nonstop flights from the U.S. From Portugal’s volcanic island chain to a Nordic capital, these hidden gems offer a side of Europe you’ve only dreamed about visiting, until now.

Boston to Azores, Portugal

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You can hop on a nonstop flight from Boston to the Azores Islands (total flight time is about four hours) with nonstop flights on Azores Airlines. The Azores are an archipelago of nine islands along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Once here, you can hike volcanic craters, find geothermal springs, and enjoy the coastal villages.

Where to Stay: Azor Hotel on Sao Miguel offers an ideal starting point for your Azores vacation. It has a convenient location, sea-view rooms, on-site dining options, and other amenities like a spa, gym, and pool.

Philadelphia to Dubrovnik, Croatia

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Thanks to a new route from American Airlines, you can now fly nonstop from Philadelphia to Dubrovnik, along the Croatian coastline.. While many cruise ships stop in the medieval city, getting here via land has always been more difficult, until now. There’s plenty to see and enjoy in Dubrovnik beyond just a shore excursion, like Old Town, St. Blaise Church, and Rector’s Palace. There are also plenty of day trips to take as well, like to Lokrum Island and Mljet National Park.

Where to Stay: Villa Dubrovnik is the ultimate luxury hotel for your Dubrovnik stay. Located just outside the fortified city walls, the ocean-side property provides relaxation and calmness with the spa, pool, and private balconies.

Orlando to Glasgow, Scotland

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Thomas Cook and Virgin Atlantic (seasonally) both offer nonstop flights between Orlando and Glasgow. Discover Scotland’s second city and cultural capital through its shopping, nightlife, museums, street art, and architecture.

Where to Stay: Point A Hotel Glasgow is an affordable—starting rates are $50 per night—option with smaller rooms but all the amenities you need for a city stay. Reviewers note the convenience of its location to tourist attractions.

Chicago to Krakow, Poland

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LOT Polish Airlines offers a nine-hour nonstop from Chicago to Krakow flight, which is the shortest and most convenient way to get to the Malopolska Region from the U.S. Poland is an underrated European country but offers almost everything Western Europe does—picturesque mountain ranges, medieval architecture, and worldly museums—just at a fraction of the price and without the crowds.

Where to Stay: PURO Krakow Kazimierz is a new, smartly designed hotel located in the historic Jewish neighborhood of Kazimierz.

Newark to Porto, Portugal

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While most nonstop routes from the U.S. land in Lisbon, United and TAP Portugal fly nonstop from Newark to Porto. Porto, the country’s second-largest city, is where port wine originated. The city is located on the River Douro and there’s plenty to do both on and off the water.

Where to Stay: It’s worth splurging for a night at Torel Avantgarde. This five-star boutique hotel is located in the center of Porto’s art district; the hotel has a spa, art installations, and balconies that overlook the Douro.

New York to Nice, France

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Yes, you can fly nonstop into the French Riviera. Delta (via Air France) offers nonstop flights from New York JFK to Nice. Hop the eight-hour flight then live la vie en rose on the beaches of Nice and enjoy all this luxe European vacation destination has to offer.

Where to Stay: Hotel La Perouse is located right on the ocean and has incredible views, a friendly staff, and outdoor pool.

Miami to Dusseldorf, Germany

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Eurowings (via Brussels Airlines with tickets sold by Lufthansa and United) has nonstop flights between Miami and the up-and-coming German city of Dusseldorf. Located in Western Germany, the city is separated into two sections by the Rhine. Visit for a vibrant arts and fashion scene, as well as al fresco riverfront dining.

Where to Stay: The Hyatt Regency Dusseldorf has a convenient location along the river, giving guests easy access to both sides of the city. Modern rooms and appealing dining options make it a comfortable spot to come back to at the end of a day of sightseeing.

New York to Helsinki, Finland

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Head to this Nordic capital of cool—literally in the winter, figuratively in regards to the culture—with a nonstop flight on Finnair from New York’s JFK airport (tickets are also sold by American, British Airways, and Iberia). This design-centric city is home to traditional Finnish saunas and spas as well as museums, churches, and sidewalk cafes. Bonus: you can take day trips to Russia and Estonia.

Where to Stay: Hotel St. George, located in Helsinki’s city center, is a newly renovated historic property. The hotel displays Nordic design in its rooms and has a Finnish spa, onsite bakery, and even a light-filled wintergarten.

Los Angeles to Vienna, Austria

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Nonstop flights to underrated places in Europe don’t only originate from the East Coast. United (via Austrian Airlines) flies the long-haul route (just under 12 hours) between Los Angeles and Vienna. SmarterTravel’s Shannon McMahon, who traveled to Vienna in summer calls it, “a mini Paris seen through the quirky lens of a Wes Anderson film” and loves the city for its affordability, palaces, and culinary delights.

Where to Stay: Ruby Hotels has two Vienna locations—the Ruby Sofie Hotel Vienna and the Ruby Marie Hotel Vienna—both are affordable options with artistic flair.

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Ashley Rossi is always ready for her next trip. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram for travel tips, destination ideas, and off the beaten path spots.

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