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Spotlight Europe: Insider’s Tour of Edinburgh, Cannes and Lisbon

Traveling to Edinburgh

A tour of Edinburgh will reveal all that this marvelous and mysterious city has to offer. Centuries old, with a largely untouched gothic architectural landscape, the city is well poised to offer an alternative to ‘other’ major Scottish tourist destinations Aberdeen and Glasgow. You will most certainly struggle to find another European city that offers so much naturally preserved, but varied, history. Edinburgh is therefore a city of wonderful contradictions. Within the same afternoon you can find yourself deeply entrenched in the old town, sitting in a quiet fire lit corner of the Victorian Jekyll and Hyde pub, or you may be browsing one of the many designer stores that the city boasts.

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Edinburgh remains a city that offers something for everyone. Indeed, a tour of Edinburgh can be as extensive as you wish. The City boasts Whisky Distilleries and tours, Ghost Tours and the UNESCO World Heritage Site that is the old town. Michelin star restaurants, along with affordable and accessible restaurants abound. This is clearly a city that enjoys its food. The culture and variation of the events that the city hosts is clearly illustrated by the sheer number of people that are drawn to the city at any one time. In August, the city hosts the annual Edinburgh Fringe Festival; which is a festival of comedy, art, street magic and entertainment that captivates a wide- reaching audience. Do not be surprised to bump into world renowned comedians if visiting at this time. Conversely, a winter visit on news year eve will bring you to the annual Hogmanay celebration. Live music and fireworks play out under the sharp winter frost, where hot cocoa or perhaps something stronger awaits you as you bring in the New Year.

Vacationing in Cannes

There are certain words that are instantly associated with any tour of Cannes; movies, glamor and sophistication are but a few. This beautiful and well-revered city (pronounced ‘Can’) lies in the heart of the French Riviera and serves as a playground to the bold, the rich and the beautiful. Expect the intensity of the city to increase around May each year for the annual film festival when those in the Hollywood A list come to town to hang out.

Of course there is much more to vacationing in Cannes than simply catching a glimpse of one of the many celebrities. The city hosts a fantastic number of world renowned and exceptional restaurants. No vacation in Cannes or tour of Cannes would be complete without an evening stroll among the many large and imposing yachts on the waterfront, visiting one of the many bars and sampling the delicious seafood that is impossibly fresh.

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The city is not entirely enclosed. There are a couple of islands that are easily accessible by boat, should you need to avoid the Paparazzi and soak up some culture in the sunshine. The small island of St. Marguerite houses the prison cell of the ‘Man in the Iron Mask’, who was banished to the island for reasons unknown. The island also homes a museum that boasts shipwrecks from the Roman Empire. A tour of Cannes certainly offers something special.

Visiting Lisbon

The capital of Portugal is the beating heart and lifeblood of the country. A tour of Lisbon is essentially a tour of ancient and modern Europe, neatly condensed within beautiful and interesting surrounds. With a distinct Mediterranean feel of warm summers and mild winters, it is perfect to visit at any time of the year.

Although it is the capital of Portugal, Lisbon’s history is firmly entrenched in Roman roots. No tour of Lisbon is complete without a visit to through the Roman architectural offerings, such as the Lisbon Cathedral, which is a marvel to behold and fantastically preserved, considering it was built in the first millennium. For those keen on engineering and building feats, the world famous aqueduct, known locally as the Aqueduto das Águas Livres, is an impressive sight that stands boldly in the quaint parish of Campolide, which is easily accessible by car.

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The town of Chiado is an impressive area. The town is rich in tradition and history; home to famous poets Antonio Riberio and Fernando Pessosa – it is easy to see where they drew their inspiration for their prose. Shops and boutiques offer generous choices of keepsakes and mementos and a coffee shop is never far away. It is the ideal town to spend an afternoon to relax, watch the locals and immerse in a quiet pace of life.

Understandably, the culture in Lisbon does not end there. Baroque, Roman, Gothic and Postmodern buildings are found on every corner, each unusual and inviting in their own way. A tour of Lisbon neatly encompasses a rich and diverse offering to each visitor with different interests in one accessible European destination.

Rent a Car with Auto Europe on Your Next Tour of These Three European Cities

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