Travelers who visit Paris in winter get to experience a less congested, more European Europe.

Every time I travel to Europe in the off-season, I find myself enjoying a cool and comfy tranquility -- and not missing the heat and crowds that so often come with peak season. But even more than that, I enjoy catching Europe by surprise -- at its candid best, living everyday life. When I travel outside of the tourist season, Europe seems even more welcoming than normal.

Some of my warmest European memories have been gained while wearing a sweater...

Hiding in a distant wing of Vienna s crowded Hofburg Palace, the Albertina Museum s 19th-century state rooms are usually empty.

Seeing the top sights in Europe's big cities can be intense. It's hot, it's crowded, and your dream of having a quiet moment with the Mona Lisa is shared by around six million people every year.

The mission of my most recent trip to Europe was finding peace and tranquility in big cities that, in many ways, feel overrun with tourists. And it's surprisingly easy to do.

Many travelers stick to the most famous sights -- and I don't...

The essential elements of the French Riviera — azure water, blue sky, and endless sunshine — appeal to vacationers and artists alike in places like Nice.

With its romantic coastline, inviting beaches, and reliable sunshine, southern France's Riviera region has been a tourist destination since the 1860s. A hundred years ago, aristocrats from London to Moscow flocked here to socialize, gamble, and escape the dreary weather at home. But the area also attracted a who's who of 20th-century artists, who were drawn by the Mediterranean's bohemian atmosphere, luminous light, and contrasting colors of...

he picture-perfect setting of the Cinque Terre villages (in this case, Riomaggiore) draws millions of tourists annually.

When I first came to the Cinque Terre, then an isolated stretch of the Italian Riviera south of Genoa, it was a classic "back door": a string of five pastel-hued hamlets, gently and steadily carving a good life out of difficult seaside terrain. It was authentic, romantic, and without a tourist in sight. Fast forward several decades ... and the once-sleepy villages are now on Instagram bucket lists and mobbed in high season by organized tours and cruise-ship excursions...

The Schlosskirche (Castle Church, aka All Saints’ Church) in Wittenberg, Germany, is where Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses in 1517. The church also contains his tomb.

Dear Globetrotter:

Welcome to the 526th issue of your monthly foreign-travel magazine, one place where people try to help others, sharing what they’ve learned while doing what they love: traveling.

Covering destinations outside of the US, much of International Travel News is a collection of subscribers’ articles, letters and reports plus their thoughts and comments on travel-related subjects.

Have a question about a place, a product or a procedure? An...


Monaco is so small that it could fit inside New York's Central Park.

Coimbra University’s King João's Library, in Portugal, has a spectacular ceiling and is one of Europe’s best surviving Baroque libraries. Photo by Dominic Arizona Bonuccelli

When touring any city, it’s fun to drop in on the local university. But in Europe, universities can be essential sightseeing, as some are home to great architectural, artistic and cultural treasures.

• One of Europe’s top university sights is the Book of Kells, tucked away in the library of the venerable Trinity College in DUBLIN. This famous illuminated manuscript is a 1,200-year-old version of the four Gospels, elaborately inked and meticulously illustrated...

Entrance courtyard of the Valtice château. Photos by Yvonne Michie Horn

Two magnificent châteaux bookend what is known today as the Lednice-Valtice Cultural Landscape in the South Moravian Region of the Czech Republic.

From 1249 until events surrounding World War II resulted in its confiscation, the Cultural Landscape’s 100-plus square miles belonged to Liechtenstein, the tiny, 62-square-mile principality now sandwiched between Austria and Switzerland.

Between the 17th and 20th centuries, the Dukes of Liechtenstein set about...