From historic palaces to places of worship, Europe is abundant with history, culture, and famous landmarks.
All across the continent, Europe has a plethora of fascinating scenes and historical sites to discover. So, if you’re visiting the ‘Old Continent’, these are the top ten most famous landmarks in Europe to see.
With architecture dating back to prehistoric times and engineering constructed as recently as the 20th century, Europe tells a tale of centuries through its historical sites.
So, whether you’re a history buff or just want to find out a little bit more about the world around you, read on.
WBL’s fun facts about the most famous landmarks in Europe:
- The Eiffel Tower was only supposed to be a temporary structure when it was constructed by Gustave Eiffel for the 1889 World Fair, held in Paris to commemorate 100 years of the French Revolution.
- Rome’s Colosseum is the largest amphitheatre ever built.
- England’s iconic Stonehenge took Neolithic builders approximately 1,500 years to complete.
- Construction of La Sagrada Familia in Barcelona started in 1882 and remains ongoing. It is expected to be finally completed in 2026, making it one of the longest-running construction projects in the world.
First up on our list of famous landmarks in Europe is the astounding Mont Saint Michel in Normandy, France. This incredible medieval island city is recognisable for its Abbey set atop the hill.
Greeting up to two million visitors every year, this popular tourist attraction is a truly fascinating sight to discover and is one of the best things to do in Europe.
Address: 50170 Mont Saint-Michel, France
9. Prague Castle, Prague – an incredible 9th-century castle
The magical Prague Castle towers high above the city overlooking all the quaint tiled roofs below.
This amazing UNESCO World Heritage Site was built in the 9th-century and is recognised as the largest ancient castle complex in the world.
However, what is so fascinating about this landmark is the array of architectural styles, thanks to its numerous renovations undertaken throughout the years.
Address: Hradčany, 119 08 Prague 1, Czechia
8. Leaning Tower of Pisa, Pisa – defined by its biggest failing
The Leaning Tower of Pisa in the small Tuscan city of the same name is one of the most iconic sites in the world.
This unusual site attracts thousands of visitors every year, snapping creative pictures alongside the tower. Built in the 12th century on an unstable foundation, the tower has become defined by perhaps its biggest failing at the time.
Address: Piazza del Duomo, 56126 Pisa PI, Italy
7. St Basil’s Cathedral, Moscow – for unusual architecture
The Cathedral of Vasily the Blessed, or Basil’s Cathedral, in Moscow is perhaps one of the most surreal entries on this list.
This collection of nine chapels is defined by its unique architectural style and colourful onion domes.
Address: Red Square, Moscow, Russia, 109012
6. Brandenburg Gate, Berlin – a marvellous historic site
Erected between 1788 and 1791, this magnificent columned gateway was once a sign of division between East and West Berlin.
Address: Pariser Platz, 10117 Berlin, Germany
5. La Sagrada Família, Barcelona – a Gaudian cathedral
Towering high above the city and coastline below, this fantastic Basilica was designed by Antoni Gaudi in 1883. People from all parts of the world gaze at the stunning building, but what is on the inside of La Sagrada Familia?
Address: Carrer de Mallorca, 401, 08013 Barcelona, Spain
4. Big Ben, London – one of the most famous clocktowers in the world
Perhaps the most iconic clocktower in the world, Big Ben is a must-visit on any visit to London.
What is lesser-known, however, is the ‘Big Ben’ is, in fact, the nickname of the bell inside. The tower is actually called the Elizabeth Tower!
Address: London SW1A 0AA
READ MORE: 12 things do to in London before you die
3. Parthenon, Greece – for ancient history
Welcoming hundreds of thousands of visitors every year, this incredible Unesco World Heritage Site features an array of ancient buildings that provide a fascinating insight into the past.
Take a stroll around the Acropolis and learn about the foundations of the world we live in today.
Address: Athens 105 58, Greece
2. Colosseum, Rome – a symbol of Ancient Rome
If the ancient Romans are more your thing, then you need to pay a visit to the Colosseum in Rome.
Welcoming six million visitors every year, this historic site is among the most popular attractions in the world.
At the time of its construction in 72 AD, the Colosseum was the largest amphitheatre in the world. Offering a fascinating insight into the world of the Roman Empire, this circular theatre was the site of violent gladiatorial shows and other performances.
Address: Piazza del Colosseo, 1, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
1. Eiffel Tower, Paris – an inspiring feat of engineering
Topping our list of the most famous landmarks in Europe is the stunning Eiffel Tower at the heart of Paris, the City of Love.
This incredible feat of engineering was constructed in 1887 under the instruction of architect Gustave Eiffel. Standing at 324 m (1,063 ft) tall, the Eiffel Tower is the tallest structure in Paris and offers fantastic views of the sprawling city for miles around.
Welcoming over seven million visitors annually, this is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the world.
Address: Champ de Mars, 5 Av. Anatole France, 75007 Paris, France
Your questions answered about the most famous landmarks in Europe
If you’ve read our article and still have some questions left unanswered, never worry! We have compiled a list of the most commonly asked questions both to us and from online about the topic.
What is the biggest landmark in Europe?
Perhaps THE biggest and most famous landmark in Europe is the Eiffel Tower in Paris. People from all over the world are aware of and wish to visit the Eiffel Tower.
What is the best time to visit the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France?
The summer months and Christmastime are the most popular times for tourism in Paris. We recommend visiting between March and June or September to November for smaller crowds. However, Paris is always pretty busy. Try visiting the Eiffel Tower first thing in the morning to avoid big crowds.
How can I skip the long lines at the Colosseum in Rome, Italy?
To avoid long lines at the Colosseum, you can purchase Skip-The-Line tickets in advance online.