My European Capital Rankings – 36 to 31

I have yet to visit Moscow, Valletta, Verduz, Pristina and Andorra la Vella, Ljubljana won’t be visited until February and I do not feel that I have explored Berlin, Bern or Podgorica enough to rate them. I have not included Monte Carlo as I consider that as part of France in the same way as the Vatican is in Rome & San Marino is part of Italy.

The rest of Europe’s capitals however I have been to and spent a decent amount of time in.
Here is my own personal ranking. Personal being the key word. As the saying goes, ‘one man’s meat is another man’s poison’.

I therefore make no apology if I have ranked your favourite low down in my list. We are all right and at the same time all wrong.

Please let me know if I have missed out on any gems on my visits……..

P.S. despite visiting a few museums & art galleries in my time, they are not really my thing!

36 Ankara 

OK, Turkey is more Asia than Europe, but with fabulous Istanbul straddling both continents (and a city that would be in my top 5 in normal peaceful circumstances if it were the capital), I have included it. Ankara has Ataturk’s Mausoleum which is worth a visit. No comment on the rest.


Anitkabir – Ankara’s Only Highlight?

35 Skopje 

Nice bridge, interesting Muslim quarter with mosque, hamam and workshops. That’s it for me. The rest I remember as cold, windy and dull. Lake Ohrid a few hours south on the other hand is beautiful.


The Best Of Skopje?

34 Sofia 

Sorry Bulgaria but I do not like your capital – I know that many do love it but I am not one of them. The main cathedral is impressive from the outside and that’s about it for me. I did love Veliko Tărnovo and Rila Monastery though to redress the Bulgarian rating overall.


The St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral – Top Marks For The Exterior

33 Chisinau 

Moldova is poor and so is its capital. Very little to do but great to have visited all the same. Happily it was an excellent base for exploring the surrounding fantastic countryside, which is still farmed the old way, and the intriguing enclave of Transnistria.


Wide Load Near Chisinau

32 Brussels 

The Grand Place/Gross Markt is very impressive I grant you and moules et frites washed down with a leffe blonde is pretty much a local delicacy. Apart from that I am pretty bored with the EU capital, possibly on account of going so often in the past for work. The disappointingly small Manneken Pis about sums it all up for me. Give me Bruges or Ghent any time.


Taking The Pis

31 Luxembourg 

Some very nice buildings and an iconic red bridge spanning a gorge, but I cannot remember too much to write home about. I visited in ’87 & ’89 so memories are a little cloudy. Singing along to the Smiths lyric ‘writing frightening verse, to a buck-toothed girl from Luxembourg’ was a particular highlight! I also visited the town of Ettelbruck and I remember the area quite fondly for the surrounding countryside.


Grand Duchess Charlotte Bridge


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