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Europe Travel the best of Travel Tips

The Complete National Parks Check List – Best of Europe for Nature Lovers

By on June 21, 2016

Europe is known for its rich history, the diversity of its colorful cultures, and the breathtaking beauty of its natural wonders. If you’re a nature fan and it’s all about finding stunning sights and unbelievable landscapes for you, then this list of top national parks across the continent is simply perfect for you!

So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip to Europe!

1. Gran Paradiso National Park, Italy – Between Aosta valley and the Alps, this paradise is a beautiful sanctuary for protected wildlife from which you can spot all nearby summits including Mont Blanc, Monte Rosa, Matterhorn, etc.

Gran Paradiso National Park, Italy

Gran Paradiso National Park, Italy

2. Monti Sibillini National Park, Italy – Covered with white snow in the winter, colorful flowers in the spring, and green pastures in the summer, Monti Sibillini is one of Italy’s most beautiful national parks. It is a great spot to engage in outdoor activities, and surround yourself with the most awe-inspiring nature.

Monti Sibillini National Park, Italy

Monti Sibillini National Park, Italy

3. Belluno Dolomites National Park, Italy – From mesmerizing mountains to enchanted forests and wildlife watching, this marvelous valley has just about everything to offer the nature loving traveler. If you love a good treasure hunt, try and find as many turquoise ponds and lakes as you can, they’re hidden between the dramatic rocky mountains and each is world of wonder.

Belluno Dolomites National Park, Italy

Belluno Dolomites National Park, Italy

4. Cinque Terre National Park, Italy – One of National Geographic’s top 10 hiking trails in the world, this park is named after the five beautiful and authentic cliffside fishing villages that comprise it. The charming small houses, the colors, the smells, the people – You will fall head over heels for this timeless trail.

Cinque Terre National Park, Italy

Cinque Terre National Park, Italy

5. Écrins National Park, France – High up in the clouds is a valley of glaciers and white mountain summits; a beautiful and mesmerizing asylum for the wandering soul. This place is where poets would go get inspired, and so should you!

Écrins National Park, France

Écrins National Park, France

6. Pyrénées, France – Wilder than the Alps, the Pyrénées Mountain Range boasts incredible wildlife, tall snowcapped mountains, and breathtaking scenery. Bordering the south of France, it is surrounded by hot springs, impossibly blue lakes, and air so pure it will cleanse your body and mind.

Pyrénées, France

Pyrénées, France

7. Port-Cros National Park, France – Just east of Toulon on the stunning and less familiar island of Port-Cros, you will find the peaceful beauty you have been waiting for, an off the beaten path Mediterranean gem.

 Port-Cros National Park, France

Port-Cros National Park, France

8. Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park, Spain – Rich with wildlife, beautiful mountains, stunning lakes, and green forests, this park is quite the gem of the Spanish Pyrenees and offers great historical background as well.

Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park, Spain

Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park, Spain

9. Garajonay, Spain – This national park’s beauty has earned it a UNESCO World Heritage Site status. Situated in the Canary Islands, the park is a wild reserve of thick forests and unruly trees whose branches grow in all directions.

Garajonay, Spain

Garajonay, Spain

10. Madeira National Park, Madeira Island, Portugal – The park grounds encompass nearly two-thirds of the Archipelago of Madeira and is home to some of the planet’s most unique and exotic flora and fauna. It is also known to be occupied by various endangered species.

Madeira National Park, Madeira Island, Portugal

Madeira National Park, Madeira Island, Portugal

11. Peneda-Gerês National Park, Portugal – This astonishing landscape, dotted with beautiful mountain peaks, offers great hiking trails and campsites for you to be able to explore the prehistoric remains scattered through its grounds.

Peneda-Gerês National Park, Portugal

Peneda-Gerês National Park, Portugal

12. Swiss National Park, Switzerland – The one and only national park in Switzerland is not only part of the worldwide UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, but it is also home to some notable peaks that will take your breath away.

Swiss National Park, Switzerland

Swiss National Park, Switzerland

13. The Saxon Switzerland National Park, Germany – Located in the State of Saxon, this beautiful park features an incredible rock canyon landscape, forested areas untouched by humans, and then adjoins to the Bohemian Switzerland National Park in the Czech Republic.

The Saxon Switzerland National Park, Germany

The Saxon Switzerland National Park, Germany

14. Black Forest National Park, Germany – The park lies on the main crest of the Northern Black Forest and is comprised of lakes and forests that spread between the Black Forest High Road and the valley of the Murg.

Black Forest National Park, Germany

Black Forest National Park, Germany

15. Bavaria Forest National Park, Germany – With over 70,000 annual visitors, this popular national park is part of Central Europe’s largest contiguous area of forest, home to untouched woodland and purely unspoiled nature.

Bavaria Forest National Park, Germany

Bavaria Forest National Park, Germany

16. Nationalpark Kalkalpen, Austria – With pristine forests, mountains, gorges, and streams, this remarkable national park is one of Austria’s finest natural treasures.

 Nationalpark Kalkalpen, Austria

Nationalpark Kalkalpen, Austria

17. Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria – From its high majestic mountains to its cool clear lakes, hike the park’s numerous trails to enjoy its immense wealth of natural beauty,

Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria

Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria

18. The Triglav National Park, Slovenia – A stunning national park, home to the highest mountain in the country, and a huge range of beautiful flora and fauna.

The Triglav National Park, Slovenia

The Triglav National Park, Slovenia

19. Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia – Rich with thick greenery, turquoise lakes, natural springs and fountains, this phenomenal aqua-land is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Croatia.

Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia

Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia

20. Goreme National Park, Turkey – This land of pointed rocks rising from the ground will remind you of the scenery from a sci-fi film as it is so utterly out of this world!

Goreme National Park, Turkey

Goreme National Park, Turkey

22. Alonnisos National Marine Park, Greece – Explore Europe’s largest marine protected area including the island of Alonnisos, six smaller islands, as well as 22 uninhabited islets and rocky outcrops, where you will see untouched nature as well as unique flora and fauna indigenous to the region.

Alonnisos National Marine Park, Greece

Alonnisos National Marine Park, Greece

23. Olympus National Park, Greece – Walk the paths of the Greek Gods in this spectacular park, home to awe-inspiring mountains including Greece’s highest peak, Mount Olympus.

 Olympus National Park, Greece

Olympus National Park, Greece

24. Durmitor National Park, Montenegro – Forty eight peaks reaching altitudes of over 2,000m make up this incredible park. Home to over 163 species of bird, about 50 types of mammals, and a great variety of butterflies, the park has to shortage of natural wonder waiting around every bend of its immense rivers.

Durmitor National Park, Montenegro

Durmitor National Park, Montenegro

25. Butrint National Park, Albania – One of the region’s most remarkable archaeological sites, including an ancient ruined city, mosaics, theaters, and many other historically significant elements that depict the stronghold that once stood here.

Butrint National Park, Albania

Butrint National Park, Albania

26. Wadden Sea National Park, The Netherlands\Germany\Denmark – Just north of the mainland, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Wadden Sea is known as a sanctuary for migrating birds and home for large numbers of sea life creatures but the extreme tides are what makes it so special and beautiful to explore.

Wadden Sea National Park, The Netherlands\Germany\Denmark

Wadden Sea National Park, The Netherlands\Germany\Denmark

27. Sarek National Park, Sweden – Home to some of Sweden‘s highest mountains, this challenging national park is popular among expert hikers and mountaineers.

Sarek National Park, Sweden

Sarek National Park, Sweden

28. Rago National Park, Norway –With fewer annual tourists than other parks, this untouched stretch of natural beauty spans ragged cliffs, granite mountains, glaciers, valleys, lakes, and a wide range of local wildlife.

Rago National Park, Norway

Rago National Park, Norway

29. Jotunheimen National Park, Norway – Covering most of the mountainous region of Jotunheimen, this national park features rivers and lakes and is home to a variety of animals.

Jotunheimen National Park, Norway

Jotunheimen National Park, Norway

30. Vatnajokull National Park, Iceland – Check out Europe’s largest glacier, volcanoes, rivers, and some of the most beautiful nature in Iceland at this national park.

Vatnajokull National Park, Iceland

Vatnajokull National Park, Iceland

31. Oulanka National Park, Finland – A unique national park, which features pine forests, river valleys with sandy banks and rapids, and in the north of vast mires.

Oulanka National Park, Finland

Oulanka National Park, Finland

32. Lahemaa National Park, Estonia – Get a taste for most of Estonia’s remarkable natural features in this amazing park, known for its wide range of geological variety including beaches, forests, cliffs, and more.

Lahemaa National Park, Estonia

Lahemaa National Park, Estonia

33. Gauja National Park, Latvia – Other than its natural beauty, breathtaking river, and lush forest, the park also offers great trails that lead to stunning hidden caves, beautiful castles and amazing view points. You can even bungee jump off a cable car above the river!

Gauja National Park, Latvia

Gauja National Park, Latvia

34. Trakai Historical National Park, Lithuania – Trakai lakes and castle are one of the most beautiful and lively places to visit. Enjoy a dip in the crystal clear water or a spin on a paddle boat, and finish off with some local pastries in one of the small restaurants that you can find everywhere around.

Trakai Historical National Park, Lithuania

Trakai Historical National Park, Lithuania

35. Curonian Spit National Park, Lithuania – A gorgeous turquoise lagoon that will make you feel like you’re in an exotic country far far away, rather than up in the Baltic sea! Explore the beautiful sand dunes and sea-life of the lagoon and the witch forest.

Curonian Spit National Park, Lithuania

Curonian Spit National Park, Lithuania

36. Białowieża Forest National Park, Poland\Belarus – Poland‘s oldest national park is considered Europe’s largest primeval lowland wood, retaining a remarkably diversified ecosystem.

Białowieża Forest National Park, Poland\Belarus

Białowieża Forest National Park, Poland\Belarus

37. Pirin National Park, Bulgaria – Encompassing most of Bulgaria’s Pirin Mountains, the glaciers, meadows, rivers, and lakes make up just the beginning of this magnificent park’s immense beauty.

Pirin National Park, Bulgaria

Pirin National Park, Bulgaria

38. Balaton Uplands National Park, Hungary – Located on the banks of the picturesque Balaton Lake, this national park is highly visited by international travelers and locals alike.

Balaton Uplands National Park, Hungary

Balaton Uplands National Park, Hungary

39. Bohemian Switzerland National Park, Czech Republic – Few things can compare to the sunrise flooding its light on the endless sea of green in this northern Czech national park. With giant cliffs and boulders rising from the forest, and powerful streams running deep within it, visiting it is almost a spiritual experience.

 Bohemian Switzerland National Park, Czech Republic

Bohemian Switzerland National Park, Czech Republic

40. Snowdonia National Park, Wales  – With vast areas of natural untamed beauty, these 823 sq miles are pristine and breathtaking, with the highest mountain and the largest lake in the UK, and endless possible activities.

Snowdonia National Park, Wales

Snowdonia National Park, Wales

41. Lake District National Park, England – Mesmerizing lakes reflecting the clouds and mountain tops, wind in your hair with the promise of freedom, and scenic rides are just a moment away as you explore the most beautiful lakes on the British isle.

 Lake District National Park, England

Lake District National Park, England

42. Killarney National Park, Ireland – This magical national park is real life Middle Earth. With towering mountains, streams gushing over rocks, woodlands, waterfalls, and pristine lakes – it is hard to believe that it’s real.

 Killarney National Park, Ireland

Killarney National Park, Ireland

43. Loch Lomond and the Trossachs, Scotland – Located in one of the largest British Isles, this national park boasts a stunning hilly landscape. It is perfect for anyone looking to do some wildlife watching, trekking, hiking, and climbing.

Loch Lomond and the Trossachs, Scotland

Loch Lomond and the Trossachs, Scotland

44. Tatra National Park, Poland/Slovakia – listed as a world biosphere reserve, the parks greatest quality are its  species of plants and wild animals and a breathtaking glacial lakes.

Tatra National Park, Poland/Slovekia

Tatra National Park, Poland/Slovakia

 

With such a great wishlist, the best thing to do is to close your eyes, and then randomly put your finger down on the screen – This is your next destination!

Check out more great articles:

You might also like 10 Most Enchanting Small Towns In Austria

Make sure to read 10 Most Picturesque Villages In Switzerland

Don’t miss out on 10 Most Romantic Small Towns In Italy

 

 

 

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3 Comments
  1. Reply

    Jessica

    January 19, 2016

    Wow! Have to check one of these. Just started to live in Europe and glad found this great list to explore.

  2. Reply

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    July 6, 2016

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  3. Reply

    thomaskutty thankachan

    January 5, 2017

    I see this blog good quality and excellent. I earn good knowledge and skill.

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