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14 Fairytale Towns Across Europe [Copy link] 中文

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(By Rachel Delia Benaim via Weather)

In an age of increased globalization, where the skyscraper overtakes the cottage, wouldn't it be nice to step into a real life fairy tale every once in a while?

Thanks to these hidden gems around Europe, you can. There are a variety of idyllic towns-- some of them strangely identical to ones depicted and described in classical fairy tales-- still scattered around the continent, seemingly untouched by time.

Visiting these towns, it’s pretty easy to see where fairy tale genre trailblazers Charles Perrault got some of their descriptions: Perrault’s Beauty and the Beast is set in a place just like the quaint small towns like Eguisheim in Alsace, France. Cinque Terre and other small towns in Italy are utterly reminiscent of Geppetto's reality, too. Plus, there’s Mittenwald, Germany, which resembles every town in every Grimm’s story ever: Snow White, Hansel and Gretel, Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty...the list goes on and on.

Get whisked away into these fairy tale dreamlands in the real world, and experience how these towns have evolved over time to blend their historical and Romantic pasts with the ever changing present.


1. Bruges, Belgium (Photo credit: Wolfgang Staudt/ Flickr)

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Bruges, the "Venice of the north," is a perfectly preserved medieval UNESCO World Heritage Site, known for its fairy tale like feel, rich chocolate, and plethora of good beer.
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2. Évora, Portugal (Credit: Cesar Marques/ Flickr)

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Dating back to the 14th century, Évora is peppered with historic sights including Roman baths, the Templo Romano, and the old town square, Praça do Giraldo.
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3. Mittenwald, Germany (Credit: Neil Howard)

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If the idyllic train journey to Mittenwald doesn't make you feel like you've fallen into a Brother's Grimm story, bask in the Bavarian town that Goethe called “a living picture book.”


4. Colmar, France (Credit: MorBCN/ Flickr)

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Located in the heart of the Alsace region, Colmar is reminiscent of Belle's hometown in Beauty and the Beast. How could you not be their guest?
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5. Lindau, Germany (Credit: Andreas Flohr)

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Situated near the Swiss-Austrian border, Lindau very much maintains its old town feel. It's easy to picture any charming Grimm's story here. Honestly.


6. Chipping Campden, England (Credit: Matthew Kirkland/ Flickr)

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Located among the rolling Cotswold, this town is so beautiful and peaceful that it prompted the advent of the Arts and Crafts Movement.
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7. Eguisheim, France (Credit: Tambako The Jaguar/ Flickr)

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One of several fairytale towns trickles across Alsace, Eguisheim traces its history back to Paleolithic times, and is known for its quaint charms, old town feel, and half timbered buildings.


8. Hallstatt, Austria (Credit: -peperoni-/Flickr)


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"A town so old and esteemed, it has a whole Iron Age era dedicated to it (the Hallstatt Era, 700 - 500 BC)," quipped Matador network reporter Rory Moulton. "Hallstatt can be reached by train or boat. Take the boat."
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9. Óbidos, Portugal (Credit: Melissa Toledo/ Flickr)

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Capturing all of Portugal's charms in one little hill town, Óbidos' memory contains that of every ancient conquering power from the Romans to Visigoths to Moors. Walk around here and enjoy its charming doors, scrumptious foods, and nostalgic vibes.


10. Monte Isola, Italy (Credit: efilpera/ Flickr)

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This small Italian islands in Lake Iseo is dotted with small fishing towns, ports, and olive-and-grape villages.
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11. Cinque Terre, Italy (Credit: Fougerouse Arnaud/ Flickr)

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The fishing and grape-growing towns that comprise the Cinque Terre on Italy's Riviera have attempted to impede the encroaching modern world, including opting out of a highway connection, strictly regulating building, and even blocking high-speed internet for some time.


12. Český Krumlov, Czech Republic (Credit: Russell McNeil/ Flickr)

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A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Český Krumlov’s outsized castle-- second in the Czech Republic only to the Prague castle-- provides a picturesque-- and fairytale-esque-- backdrop to the Baroque town.
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