As someone who has traveled extensively throughout Europe and the United States, I can confidently say that while there are apparent differences between the two continents, some American cities give off an undeniable European vibe.
From architecture to cuisine, these cities have a certain je ne sais quoi that will transport you straight to the heart of Europe. Here are 18 cities in America that feel like Europe.
1. New Orleans, Louisiana:
New Orleans is often called the most European city in America due to its rich French heritage. The French Quarter is the heart of the city, full of historic architecture, street performers, and French-inspired cuisine.
New Orleans’ French Quarter will transport you to the heart of France, while Quebec City’s cobblestone streets and French language will make you feel like you’re in the heart of Europe.
2. Quebec City, Quebec:
While technically not in the United States, Quebec City is worth mentioning due to its unmistakable European charm.
With cobblestone streets, historic architecture, and the French language, this Canadian city will make you feel like you’re in the heart of Europe.
3. Charleston, South Carolina:
Charleston’s historic district is a stunning example of colonial architecture. Its proximity to the water enhances the city’s charm, making it a popular destination for those looking to escape to a quaint seaside town.
Charleston’s colonial architecture and proximity to the water give it a quaint seaside feel, while Santa Fe’s Spanish and Native American influence gives it a unique blend of European and Southwestern charm.
4. Santa Fe, New Mexico:
Santa Fe’s historic downtown area combines Spanish and Native American influence, giving it a unique European feel. The city is known for its adobe buildings, art galleries, and Southwestern cuisine.
5. Augustine, Florida:
St. Augustine is the oldest city in the United States, and its historic district boasts a mix of Spanish and colonial architecture. The city’s cobblestone streets, horse-drawn carriages, and outdoor cafes make it feel like a small European village.
6. San Antonio, Texas:
San Antonio’s River Walk is a must-visit for anyone looking for a European feel in Texas. The river is lined with cafes, shops, and restaurants, all set against a backdrop of historic Spanish architecture.
San Antonio’s River Walk is a must-visit for anyone looking for a European feel in Texas, while Savannah’s antebellum architecture and tree-lined streets make it a peaceful escape.
7. Savannah, Georgia:
Savannah’s historic district has antebellum architecture, tree-lined streets, and horse-drawn carriages. The city’s parks and squares make it a popular destination for those seeking a peaceful escape.
8. Carmel-by-the-Sea, California:
Carmel-by-the-Sea is a small town located on the coast of California. The town’s European charm is evident in its narrow streets, cozy cafes, and Mediterranean-style architecture.
Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Mediterranean-style architecture and narrow streets make it a cozy European village, while Montreal’s French language, cuisine, and architecture will make you feel like you’re in the heart of France.
9. Montreal, Quebec:
Montreal is known for its French language, cuisine, and architecture. The city’s historic district is full of cobblestone streets, cafes, and shops, making it a popular destination for those looking to taste Europe.
10. Boston, Massachusetts:
Boston’s historic district has colonial architecture, narrow streets, and outdoor cafes. The city’s proximity to the water also adds to its European charm. Boston’s colonial architecture and proximity to the water give it a European feel,
11. Solvang, California:
Solvang is a small town in Santa Barbara County, California; Danish immigrants founded that in the early 20th century.
The town’s architecture, including half-timbered buildings and windmills, reflects traditional Danish design and gives it a distinctly European feel.
Visitors can explore the town’s boutique shops, sample Danish pastries, and cuisine, and attend festivals and events throughout the year, such as the Danish Days celebration.
Solvang is also located in the heart of California wine country, offering opportunities for wine tasting and vineyard tours.
With its charming European-inspired atmosphere, Solvang is a must-visit destination for anyone seeking a unique cultural experience in California.
12. Portland, Maine:
Portland’s Old Port district is full of brick buildings, narrow streets, and outdoor cafes. The city’s coastal location also adds to its European charm.
Portland’s Old Port district and coastal location make it feel like a European seaside town, while San Francisco’s Victorian architecture and steep hills give it a European city feel.
13. San Francisco, California:
San Francisco’s steep hills, cable cars, and Victorian architecture make it feel like a European city. The city’s proximity to the water also adds to its charm.
14. Annapolis, Maryland:
Annapolis is a historic city located on the Chesapeake Bay. The city’s colonial architecture, brick streets, and outdoor cafes make it feel like a small European village. Annapolis’ colonial architecture and outdoor cafes make it a charming European village.
15. Leavenworth, Washington:
Leavenworth is a small town in central Washington that transformed into a Bavarian-style village in the 1960s.
The town’s buildings, signage, and storefronts reflect traditional Bavarian architecture and design, making visitors feel like they’ve entered a quaint German village.
Leavenworth’s Bavarian architecture and outdoor festivals transport you straight to Germany.
Visitors can enjoy German-inspired cuisine, explore the town’s boutique shops, and attend festivals and events throughout the year, such as Oktoberfest and the Christmas Lighting Festival.
With its European-inspired charm, Leavenworth is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to taste Germany in the heart of Washington State.
16. Asheville, North Carolina:
Asheville’s historic district is full of Art Deco and Art Nouveau architecture, giving it a European feel. The city’s proximity to the Blue Ridge Mountains also adds charm.
Asheville’s Art Deco and Art Nouveau architecture and proximity to the Blue Ridge Mountains uniquely blend European and mountain charm.
17. Holland, Michigan:
Holland is a small town located on the shores of Lake Michigan. The town’s Dutch architecture and windmills make it feel like a small European village.
18. La Jolla, California:
La Jolla is a coastal town located in San Diego County. The Mediterranean-style architecture and ocean views make it feel like a European seaside town.
La Jolla’s Mediterranean-style architecture and ocean views make it a European seaside town.
Each of these cities has its unique blend of European charm, whether it’s the architecture, cuisine, or history.
In the end, if you’re looking for a taste of Europe without leaving the United States, these 18 cities are a must-visit.
From French-inspired New Orleans to Dutch-inspired Holland, these cities will transport you straight to the heart of Europe, whether it’s through architecture, cuisine, or history.
So pack your bags and get ready to explore these charming European-inspired cities in America.