Although Europe is the second smallest continent on the planet, it has played a remarkable part in the creation of Western culture. A patchwork of countries, each destination still has claims to ancient history, and scattered remnants can still be seen today. Compact, ancient and beautiful, Europe offers some of the best cultural experiences in the world, alongside stunning natural splendours.

The endless variety of Europe means it’s hard to think of a single thing that links all 50 countries together. The staggering architecture? It’s certainly beautiful, from Moorish to Baroque to Renaissance… The food? Fantastically diverse, with piquant herbs and spices, the freshest produce. What about the scenery? The landscapes vary from mountains, to moonscapes, and in some instances you can go from skiing to the beach in a single afternoon. As a continent, Europe’s many regions are often characterised by its national staples; tapas from Spain, pizza from Italy, bratwurst from Germany or souvlaki from Greece. But were you aware that you could also find some of the world’s greatest sushi in Russia, the finest Indian food in England and the Netherlands, or authentic Middle Eastern falafel in Sweden? Europe doesn’t discriminate when it comes to a tasty morsel.

So whether you would like to chase the northern lights in Iceland, explore Russia via the Trans-Siberian express, uncover renaissance art in Italy, Europe has it all.