Europe, with its rich history, stunning landscapes and diverse cultures, has long been a captivating destination for travellers all around the world. With the hashtag #EuropeanSummer currently garnering 769.8 million views on TikTok, it is fair to say that European getaways will continue to be a popular choice for travel enthusiasts around the globe. From the stunning beaches of Spain to historical landmarks in Greece, there is so much on offer for tourists.
With so much variety in the continent, we were curious to discover the most sought-after travel locations in the continent that are piquing the interest of global wanderers. To reveal the top European hot spots, we analysed Google search data for (nearly) every country around the globe over the past 12 months. We researched annual global search volumes for ‘[destination] + holiday’ and ‘[destination] + vacation’ in every localised language, to find which European holiday region is topping the searches.
The European Destinations The World Wants To Visit
Of the 106 European destinations included in the study, the research found that the iconic, blue-domed churches and breathtaking sunsets of Santorini in Greece claim the top spot as the most sought-after European holiday destination. Drawing the attention of travel enthusiasts from a staggering 47 out of 185 countries whose search data was analysed – including Saudi Arabia, Australia and Colombia - the picture-perfect Greek island has certainly whetted the appetite of so many travellers.
Greece has more destinations featured in global rankings than any other country: Santorini, Corfu, Kos, Mykonos, Crete, and Zakynthos all have a place in the top 15 of the world’s most popular European holiday destinations, only rivalled by Spain who sees four of its destinations topping vacation searches worldwide.
Attracting the second highest number of searches is Ibiza, boasting dozens of nightclubs with performances from world-renowned artists all summer long, as well as idyllic beaches, this Balearic Island is the most popular European holiday destination for 29 different countries. Beyond its vibrant party scene, Ibiza also offers tranquil spots, cultural attractions, and natural beauty for those looking to unwind from their wild evenings.
Yet another Spanish destination claims a spot in the top three, as Tenerife is third on the list. From lush forests to towering volcanoes and golden beaches, the largest of Spain's Canary Islands has something special to offer for travellers who seek outdoor activities. Tenerife is home to a perfect blend of relaxation, adventure, and year-round pleasant weather, which explains why it is the most popular choice for 18 countries around the globe including Thailand, the United Kingdom and Iceland.
Next on the list of most popular European holiday destinations is Sicily, a region that invites travellers to explore its ancient ruins, picturesque towns, and mouthwatering cuisine. This Italian gem captivates the interest of visitors from seven different countries, who are eager to take in centuries of history, from Greek temples to Roman amphitheatres.
Rounding off the top five is the Greek island of Corfu. Nestled in the Ionian Sea, Corfu is renowned for its bright green landscapes, pristine beaches, and charming Old Town. Drawing more interest than any other European destination in four countries, this paradise is beloved for its laid-back atmosphere, historical sites, and crystal-clear waters. Whether you are exploring ancient fortresses, basking in the sun on sandy shores, or indulging in delectable Greek cuisine, Corfu offers a slice of Mediterranean bliss.
Also featuring in the top 10 most sought-after vacation destinations in the continent are Kos and Antalya, in sixth and seventh place, respectively. Antalya is the only Turkish location to feature among the most searched-for European holiday destinations across the globe, likely attributed to the region’s beautiful natural landscapes that offer a range of experiences for travellers: from rafting on the Köprüçay River to joining jeep safaris in the Taurus Mountains.
Most Popular European Holiday Destinations Worldwide
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Destination as Top Search
As preferences differ from country to country, we investigated the most popular European holiday spots for each continent.
Trending EU Travel Destinations in Europe
When it comes to the destinations that have captured the interest of travellers in the European continent, Tenerife tops the list with 13 countries looking to holiday in this picturesque location more than anywhere else. Tenerife is the most searched European holiday destination in the UK, Croatia, Belgium, Estonia and Iceland.
Following in second place for European countries is Crete which comes out on top for six countries, while Santorini emerges closely behind as a sought-after destination for holidaymakers from four nations; including Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland and Montenegro. Ibiza and Kos share the limelight, each garnering interest from three countries; both of which offer a blend of breathtaking scenery, exciting nightlife and cultural charm, making them attractive choices for a memorable getaway.
Trending European Travel Destinations in South America
Shifting focus to South America, our study reveals that the destination holding the highest allure is Ibiza, topping the searches for travellers from six South American countries: Paraguay, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Venezuela and Uruguay. Santorini follows suit, garnering attention from three nations: Bolivia, Colombia and Suriname. Corfu claims the top spot for two South American countries, whilst Sicily emerges as the most-searched getaway destination in Ecuador.
The European Destination Asia Wants To See The Most
Across Asia, the appeal of European destinations is undeniable: over 4.7 million Google searches were made in the last year regarding vacationing in the continent. Santorini emerges as the clear favourite, with an impressive 16 countries searching to explore the idyllic Greek island more than anywhere else. Cambodia, India, Malaysia and Singapore are among the 16 Asian countries searching for a summer in Santorini this year.
Ibiza and Tenerife both capture the interest of travellers from three countries, and Sicily follows suit coming out as the top result for Kuwait and Lebanon.
Antalya in Turkey, Italy’s Tuscany, Hvar in Croatia and Mykonos in Greece also pique the curiosity of globe-trotters, each attracting the attention of at least one nation seeking out the unique experiences and beauty that these European locations have to offer.
Trending European Destinations in Oceania
Santorini, with its breathtaking sunsets and iconic architecture, emerges as the most desired destination among Oceania’s travellers, drawing interest from four countries. Australia, Fiji, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea all search for the Greek island paradise that captures the imagination of travellers, enticing them with its seaside beauty and romantic ambiance.
Trending European Destinations in Africa
Santorini stands out as the most sought-after holiday location among African holidaymakers, as it ranks first in searches conducted by 15 African countries; including, South Africa, Zambia, Madagascar and Botswana. Ibiza follows closely behind, intriguing vacationers from eight nations including Morocco, Cape Verde and Zimbabwe. Sicily, Antalya, Mykonos, Mallorca and Tenerife also make appearances on the holiday searches in Africa, each being the number one result for one country.
Trending European Destinations in North & Central America
Across North and Central America, the appeal of a European summer remains strong. Ibiza is the most Googled choice, with nine countries displaying a keen interest in exploring the island. Santorini follows closely as it is the most popular European destination for five nations, including Canada and Belize. Crete and Tenerife also draw interest from American travellers, with one country each showing a desire to experience the charms of these European destinations.
The Trending European Destinations For Each US State
With stunning coastlines and vibrant cities, Sicily presents an irresistible destination for those seeking a taste of la dolce vita, and US residents seem to agree. ‘Sicily holiday’ and ‘Sicily vacation’ have the biggest number of Google searches in 29 of the 50 states in the USA, including Washington, Ohio, Michigan, and Illinois. The second most searched-for European holiday destination in over 15 states is Santorini, making the USA a big fan of the Mediterranean region.
In four US states (Nevada, Alaska, Montana, and Utah) the most lusted after travel destination in the continent is Tuscany, attracting a combined search volume of over 11,000 searches in the last 12 months. From the rolling hills of Chianti to the historic city of Florence, the Tuscan region has captured the hearts of North American travellers by offering a taste of the quintessential Italian holiday.
Meanwhile, people in Louisiana are most interested in visiting Capri, whilst South Dakota locals yearn to travel to Lake Como more than any other European location. From charming streets to luxurious villas, Capri and Lake Como both deliver a perfect blend elegance and tranquillity to visitors on their vacation.
If this has left you dreaming about experiencing your own European summer getaway, then take a look at our beautiful villas located in some of the world’s most sought-after European regions.
We studied the last 12 months of Google data in 185 countries to find out which EU holiday destinations are being Googled the most for phrases like ‘[destination] holiday’ or ‘[destination] vacation’. We compared these Google searches for 106 European Union destinations, in the world’s different languages, to reveal the destination that is most popular each country. Using the same methodology, we analysed search data in 50 different US states to discover the EU vacation spots that are trending in every state.
All data correct June 2023.