23 Best Europe destinations in September of 2022

The good news is that September is literally the best month to visit Europe for most people due to lower prices, smaller crowds, and still near-perfect weather. Now in 2022 it’s possible to start planning Europe trips again because after two miserable years, Europe is mostly open and welcome to visitors again. In fact, most of the best European countries for tourism have dropped all of their COVID and vaccination restrictions and are as easy to enter as they were in 2019. This list currently includes the UK, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Czechia, Hungary, and all of Scandinavia. Most other countries such as France and Spain still have some entry requirements that are quite easy, at least for vaccinated travelers.

The weather in southern Europe is still fairly warm in September and you can enjoy beaches for most of the month. The weather in the north does get chilly during September, but it’s still pleasant enough for sightseeing even in the far north.

If this is your first trip to Europe you may also be interested in our recommendations for best first-time Europe itineraries of your own.

Below you'll find

  1. Europe’s 4 best September beach destinations
  2. Europe’s 19 best city destinations

Important September 2022 holidays in Europe

  • September 5 – Labor Day in the United States and Canada
  • September 10 and 11 – Open Monuments Day in Netherlands (free entry to many sights)
  • September 11 – Catalunya National Day (major holiday in Barcelona)
  • September 18 – Federal Thanksgiving Day in Switzerland (major public holiday)
  • September 21 – Feast Day of St. Matthew in Spain (major public holiday)
  • September 17 to October 3 – Oktoberfest in Munich

Europe's 4 best September beach destinations

Costa del Sol/Malaga, Spain

  • September avg high: 82°F/28°C
  • September avg low: 65°F/18°C
  • September avg precip: 0.6″/1.5cm

The beach weather in Spain’s famous Costa del Sol is even more pleasant in September than it is in August, and crowds are smaller as well. In other words, if you can push your sunshine holiday to September, you’ll be far better off and you’ll be rewarded with lower hotel and apartment rental rates as well.

The chance of being rained on is almost zero, but it’s still crowded enough to be fun and lively. Since so many people are forced into holidays in July or August, those who can go in September are the big winners.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €119 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €136 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €32 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Costa del Sol
>>>Costa del Sol/Malaga prices and travel tips

Algarve/Faro, Portugal

  • September avg high: 80°F/27°C
  • September avg low: 64°F/18°C
  • September avg precip: 1.0″/2.5cm

The southern coast of Portugal is known as The Algarve, and pretty much the entire description of the Costa del Sol above applies here as well. This area is not known as much of a party destination as many of Spain’s beaches, but it does have excellent stretches of sand and also a few spots that are idea for windsurfing and such.

Generally speaking, things in Portugal tend to be a bit cheaper than in Spain, although not much. Another possible benefit is that English is more widely spoken than in some of Spain’s less popular beach areas.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €68 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €129 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €15 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Algarve/Faro
>>>Algarve/Faro prices and travel tips

Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

  • September avg high: 82°F/28°C
  • September avg low: 70°F/21°C
  • September avg precip: 0.2″/0.5cm

The Canary Islands has nearly perfect weather all year round, but it can get a bit hot in July and August. So by the time September rolls in, things are cooling off a bit and getting back to that warm and dry climate that it’s so famous for.

Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands and the best choice for English speakers as well. The area around Los Cristianos in the southwest corner is packed with hotels and resorts to the point that it feels like Holiday City. Most things here are cheaper than on the mainland as well, which is one reason why many northern Europeans come for a month or more at a time.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €51 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €78 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €14 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Tenerife
>>>Tenerife prices and travel tips

Antalya, Turkey

  • September avg high: 89°F/32°C
  • September avg low: 66°F/19°C
  • September avg precip: 0.6″/1.5cm

Geography buffs and pedants will be quick to point out that Antalya isn’t technically in Europe, and they are obviously right. However, Antalya is easy to reach and packed with European holidaymakers so we feel it’s worth mentioning here. This is another place where July and August are hotter than most of us prefer, so September is more ideal.

Cheap flights from all over Europe are streaming into Antalya from April through October. This area is also one of Europe’s cheapest all-inclusive destinations, with small hotels and resorts charging absurdly low prices for a room, 3 meals, and unlimited drinks. Tourism to Turkey has gone way down in recent years due to some political uncertainty, so it’s worth checking the news before you book. That has also made the deals even a bit better as well.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €15 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €26 for two people

>>>Check hotel deals for Antalya
>>>Antalya prices and travel tips

19 Best destinations in Europe in September

Rome, Italy

  • September avg high: 79°F/26°C
  • September avg low: 60°F/16°C
  • September avg precip: 2.7″/6.8cm

Rome is another southern city that is so hot and humid during much of July and August that September is a much better month in almost every way. As you can see above, the temperatures are almost perfect all day and night, and you shouldn’t be seeing much rainfall.

Those on longer visits to Italy should consider heading south from here for a stop in Sorrento, which is a bit south of Naples. It’s the perfect base to visit that city as well as Pompeii and the Amalfi Coast. If you only have a week or so in Italy, head north from here to Florence and Venice (see below).

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €68 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €89 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €22 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Rome
>>>Rome prices and travel tips

Florence, Italy

  • September avg high: 80°F/27°C
  • September avg low: 58°F/14°C
  • September avg precip: 3.1″/7.8cm

Florence tends to be the second stop for most people on a first visit to Italy, whether they start in Venice and come south, or start in Rome and head north. This is the heart of Tuscany and one of the art world’s most important cities, so the food and museums here are top notch.

Another good reason to stop in Florence is that it tends to be a bit cheaper than Rome and noticeably cheaper than Venice. Florence is also less crowded and more mellow than the other two, so it’s generally more pleasant and less hectic. Spend 3 nights here if you can, and you might consider a half-day trip to Pisa, which takes only 1 hour each way by train. The Cinque Terre beach towns are also a fairly easy day trip from Florence, but you’ll need pretty much a full day for that.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €71 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €125 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €22 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Florence
>>>Florence prices and travel tips

Venice, Italy

  • September avg high: 75°F/24°C
  • September avg low: 58°F/14°C
  • September avg precip: 2.6″/6.5cm

If you read about Venice you surely know its reputation for being insanely crowded. September is one of the busier months, but it’s still worth coming for a day or two because it’s beautiful and you just won’t see anything else like this anywhere else in the world. Other cities have even more canals, but none look like this.

Venice can be expensive when it comes to hotels, but it’s also small enough that just one or two nights should be enough for most visitors. Also, since it’s always so crowded most people get a bit sick of walking in large groups that two days seems more than enough. The key is to spend a bit more to stay on the main island (near St Mark’s Square) and try to do sightseeing in the mornings and evenings when the day-trip and cruise passengers are gone.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €82 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €189 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €31 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Venice
>>>Venice prices and travel tips

Split, Croatia

  • May avg high: 77°F/25°C
  • May avg low: 65°F/18°C
  • May avg precip: 2.7″/6.8cm

When it comes to Croatian cities, Dubrovnik, is far better known. But Split is the better choice for most people and September is an ideal month to visit. This area is stuffed with northern Europeans all of July and August, and it’s a bit hot during those months as well. This is another place where September is more comfortable and much cheaper than summer.

Another reason to like Split is that it’s far easier to reach than Dubrovnik. The train actually comes to Split, and it’s a major hub for the many buses that carry people all over Croatia. There is also a busy ferry port here that takes people to the nearby holiday islands, or even Italy.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €54 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €68 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €11 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Split
>>>Split prices and travel tips

Paris, France

  • September avg high: 71°F/22°C
  • September avg low: 57°F/14°C
  • September avg precip: 2.1″/5.3cm

Interestingly enough, Paris is very quiet in August since half the office workers are away, and it gets really lively again in September. Hotels will be full so it’s best to book as far in advance as you can. All of the restaurants and galleries will be open again though, so it’s very much worth coming even with the crowds.

Paris is so beautiful that it’s worth visiting no matter what time of year you are coming to Europe, and September is definitely one of the nicer months. If you are planning on visiting the Louvre, the Orsay, and taking the hop-on, hop-off bus plus the Seine River cruise in the evening, you should look into the Paris Pass.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €86 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €126 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €25 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Paris
>>>Paris prices and travel tips

Barcelona, Spain

  • May avg high: 78°F/26°C
  • May avg low: 62°F/17°C
  • May avg precip: 3.4″/8.5cm

Barcelona is yet another city that is both hot and packed with tourists in August, so September is the ideal month to visit. This city has become so popular in recent years that they have suggested somehow restricting visits. Even so, it’s still very pleasant as long as you don’t spend your whole stay walking up and down the Rambla.

Hotels here are getting a bit expensive as well, so booking early is best for the most choices. And as long as you are in the area, it would be a shame to not also visit Madrid (below) since the high-speed train between them only takes 2.5 hours.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €85 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €118 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €19 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Barcelona
>>>Barcelona prices and travel tips

Madrid, Spain

  • May avg high: 79°F/26°C
  • May avg low: 59°F/15°C
  • May avg precip: 1.1″/2.8cm

Being smack in the center of Spain, Madrid feels hotter than Barcelona in July and August, so September is a much better time to visit. As we discussed just above, the high-speed train between the two cities takes only 2.5 hours, and it’s reasonably priced if you book at least a few weeks in advance.

If this is your first trip to Spain you really owe it to yourself to visit both of these huge and very different cities. Madrid is obviously the capital so it contains the Royal Palace and many more formal buildings and museums. The food is also quite different, although both are known as late-night party cities.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €54 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €79 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €22 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Madrid
>>>Madrid prices and travel tips

Lisbon, Portugal

  • September avg high: 79°F/26°C
  • September avg low: 63°F/17°C
  • September avg precip: 1.1″/2.8cm

If you are heading to Barcelona and Madrid in September, you should also seriously consider adding Lisbon to that trip. You can get here by an overnight train, but honestly it’s probably better to fly, which can also be cheaper as well. Lisbon is very different from Barcelona and Madrid in many ways, and it’s also refreshingly a bit cheaper than them as well.

Another reason to visit Portugal is that English is more widely spoken, so it’s a bit less stressful for new travelers who might not speak Spanish well. This city has a gorgeous setting famously on 7 hills, and the food is worth the trip itself.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €43 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €87 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €14 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Lisbon
>>>Lisbon prices and travel tips

Interlaken, Switzerland

  • September avg high: 67°F/19°C
  • September avg low: 49°F/9°C
  • September avg precip: 3.8″/9.5cm

If you are sure you want to visit Switzerland and you are unsure of exactly where to go, you probably want to start with Interlaken. I wrote an article called where to go in Switzerland on a short visit to help first-time visitors figure out the best places to see the amazing Alpine views, and also where to avoid (the cities mostly). Summer is actually the rainy time of year in the Alps, and by September you’ll get fewer rainy days and even shorter storms.

The big attractions here are the cable car up to the Schilthorn observation deck and the train up to Jungfraujoch, which is the highest train station in Europe. Hotels in these areas are packed in September so it’s best to book well in advance if you can, especially if you want to stay at one of the few hotels in the amazing little farming village of Gimmelwald. If you want to visit a second place in Switzerland to admire the unusual beauty, Lucerne is your best bet.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €79 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €198 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €45 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Interlaken
>>>Interlaken prices and travel tips

London, England

  • September avg high: 66°F/19°C
  • September avg low: 53°F/12°C
  • September avg precip: 2.1″/5.3cm

The London weather is definitely a bit nicer in July and August, but it’s still pretty nice in September and it doesn’t actually rain that much. If you are planning a trip to Europe in September, you should definitely include London on your itinerary, and just be thankful that it’s reasonably warm.

Most visitors to the UK just stop in London for a few days before they leave the island, but there is obviously a LOT more to see here, even in September. The second highlight for most people is Edinburgh, which can be reached by an affordable high-speed train if you book at least a few weeks in advance. Here are some of the other best England, Scotland, and Wales itinerary ideas.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from £111 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from £128 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from £31 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for London
>>>London prices and travel tips

Berlin, Germany

  • September avg high: 66°F/19°C
  • September avg low: 51°F/11°C
  • September avg precip: 1.8″/4.5cm

Berlin is definitely one of Europe’s trendiest destinations these days, and for good reason. In September it can be a bit cool here, but still plenty nice enough to enjoy both the indoor and outdoor attractions, including a pleasant cruise along the River Spree, which takes you by most of the most important buildings in this huge city.

Another great thing about Berlin is that it’s one of the cheapest large capital cities in Europe. Hotels, food, drinks, and attractions here seem quite reasonable even compared to Munich or Hamburg. The nightlife here is legendary as well, and pretty much everyone you encounter will speak English surprisingly well.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €68 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €92 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €34 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Berlin
>>>Berlin prices and travel tips

Salzburg, Austria

  • September avg high: 68°F/20°C
  • September avg low: 50°F/10°C
  • September avg precip: 4.0″/10.0cm

If you can’t make it to Switzerland’s excellent (and very expensive) Alpine destinations, you should at least try to make it to Salzburg. The September weather is still very pleasant, so you’ll have a chance to get outside of town on a bus tour to see those famous rolling hills featured in the Sound of Music film.

The historic town center of Salzburg is worth the trip by itself, as it’s almost perfectly preserved and gorgeously nestled at the base of a hill with a castle on top. The city is also famous for being the home of Mozart, and it holds several large classical music festivals to go along with that.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €133 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €179 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €24 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Salzburg
>>>Salzburg prices and travel tips

Vienna, Austria

  • September avg high: 69°F/21°C
  • September avg low: 53°F/12°C
  • September avg precip: 2.1″/5.3cm

One of Europe’s grandest cities, Vienna has pleasant weather in September, and it’s also the start of the famous culture season here. This is a city with huge and ornate buildings, but also opera houses and symphony halls. During summer there isn’t much going on, but in September all of the artists are back to work.

This is an excellent stop to combine with Salzburg because they are connected by a fast train and they are so very different from one another. Hotel prices here can seem a bit high in the central ring, so booking in advance is advised for the better places. This isn’t much of a party city, however.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €78 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €89 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €22 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Vienna
>>>Vienna prices and travel tips

Amsterdam, Netherlands

  • September avg high: 64°F/18°C
  • September avg low: 51°F/11°C
  • September avg precip: 3.2″/8.0cm

Similar to London, Amsterdam has pretty dreadful weather almost all year long, so that’s not why you come here. That said, September is still a fairly pleasant month, and the crowds are a bit lighter after the busy summer months as well.

Hotels in Amsterdam have become very expensive in recent years, especially if you want something nice within the canal rings. Book early if you can in order to get a well located place at a reasonable rate. The most famous attractions including the Anne Frank House and Van Gogh Museum are always crowded, so arrive early in the day if you can.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €102 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €169 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €28 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Amsterdam
>>>Amsterdam prices and travel tips

Bruges, Belgium

  • September avg high: 64°F/18°C
  • September avg low: 55°F/13°C
  • September avg precip: 1.5″/3.8cm

If you want to get a taste of Belgium and you are in the area, it’s probably better to spend a few hours in the center of Brussels around the Grand Place (main square) and then hop back on the train and take it one hour to Bruges, which is otherwise more interesting. This place will remind you of Amsterdam with its 16th Century architecture, but it’s quieter and more gentle.

Bruges is compact enough that you can see the highlights in two days or so, but it’s also pleasant enough that you might want to stay 3 or 4 nights. Hotels here are also more reasonable than in Brussels or Amsterdam, so it’s a good place to relax for a bit if you are on a longer trip. If you want something less touristy you might head to Ghent instead. It’s halfway between Brussels and Bruges on the same train line, and it’s a gorgeous city that is always less crowded.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €88 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €107 for two people

>>>Check hotel deals for Bruges
>>>Bruges prices and travel tips

Krakow, Poland

  • September avg high: 67°F/19°C
  • September avg low: 50°F/10°C
  • September avg precip: 2.2″/5.5cm

We consider Krakow to be Europe’s best travel bargain. It’s lovely, pleasant, historic, and almost absurdly cheap. The reason Krakow isn’t more popular is that it’s not close to any other popular cities so you really have to want to come here, and few people get here by accident.

The hotels are very good bargains for Europe, but the food, drinks, and entertainment are also very reasonably priced considering how nice and interesting the city is. As sad as it may be, you don’t want to miss Auschwitz, which is a very interesting half-day bus tour leaving from central Krakow.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €40 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €68 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €13 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Krakow
>>>Krakow prices and travel tips

Prague, Czech Republic

  • September avg high: 67°F/19°C
  • September avg low: 50°F/10°C
  • September avg precip: 1.6″/4.0cm

September is a very pleasant month in Prague because the temperatures are nice and the crowds aren’t quite as ridiculous as they are from June through August. This is another one of those cities that is so crowded in summer that some people ask themselves why they came at all. In September it’s still crowded, but not nearly as bad.

The majority of visitors to Prague just visit for a few days and then leave the country. If you’ve got a bit more time on your hands and you want to see something wonderful that many people have never heard of, head to Cesky Krumlov, which is 3 hours away on a scenic bus ride or train. It’s lovely, quiet, and even cheaper than Prague.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €41 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €66 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €17 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Prague
>>>Prague prices and travel tips

Budapest, Hungary

  • September avg high: 72°F/22°C
  • September avg low: 53°F/12°C
  • September avg precip: 1.7″/4.3cm

Budapest is another city that is usually more pleasant in September than it is in August, partly because many of the less expensive hotels here don’t have air conditioning. You’ll get warm days, cool nights, and usually almost no rain at all. This is another “grand” city that might remind you of Vienna or Prague, but of course has its own long and fascinating history.

Another of Budapest’s best features is that it’s one of the cheapest major cities in Europe. As long as you don’t need a river view from your hotel room, you can get a lot for your money here. Food and drinks are also moderately priced in the non-touristy places, and the nightlife is famously interesting as well.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €45 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €74 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €17 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Budapest
>>>Budapest prices and travel tips

Istanbul, Turkey

  • September avg high: 77°F/25°C
  • September avg low: 60°F/16°C
  • September avg precip: 1.7″/4.3cm

Even though Istanbul isn’t as hot in the summer as you might expect, it’s still nicer in September than in August. This is one of the world’s greatest and most historic cities, and as of now it’s an incredible travel bargain. More good news is that every other place in Turkey is even cheaper than Istanbul, so you might want to do a little tour including Cappadocia and Antalya if you can.

Hotels in Istanbul are good value, even in the busy Sultanahmet neighborhood where the Hagia Sofia and Blue Mosque are standing next to each other, along with most other famous sights. Do your research if you are thinking about buying a rug. Aside from that you’ll get a lot for your money here. In 2022 the situation in Turkey is not ideal as there has been some political unrest along with really bad inflation, but it’s generally been fine for tourists and prices are lower than in years thanks to the collapse in the Turkish lira.

  • Good 3-star hotels in September from €20 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in September from €32 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in September from €8 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Istanbul
>>>Istanbul prices and travel tips

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All Comments

  1. John Sloan says:

    Great site! I have a question. With the influx of folks from northern africa coming into Europe is it safe now to travel as an american to Greece and Italy?

    Also in researching flights ro the USA/Dallas to Europe I am having a hard time figuring out if the best option is first class or business class. I am a big guy at 240 lbs. Its a long flight. I don’t mind paying for a bettter class of travel but really what is the best bang for the buck without going bankrupt? 🙂

    I have a 14 day vacation I am trying to buildfor Septemebr/October 2021, Would you recommend Italy, Greece or Salzburg/Vienna/Interlaken?

    1. Roger Wade says:

      John,

      I answered some of your other questions on the other thread. As for the African influx, I haven’t been to Europe in a few years, but I haven’t heard any real concerns for tourists. You’ll see immigrants selling fake handbags in all of the Italian cities, and that’s about it. I follow this closely and my brother lives in Europe and my understanding is that the immigrants generally start in border camps and try to get permission to get jobs in cities. On the other hand, pick-pocketing is surprisingly common in most southern European cities and you always have to be careful. That has been true for decades though.

      As for the flight, I’m also a really big guy and those long flights can be pretty brutal, but I also have a hard time justifying paying, say, US$3,000 for business class or US$5,000 for first class (and a lie-flat seat) instead of US$1,200 for coach when they all get there at the same time. If you can afford business class it might be worth it, but for me I generally look for “premium economy” which usually gets you another 6 to 10 inches of legroom. It’s also worth noting that coach seats on all long-haul flights are at least a bit wider than, say, Southwest. Check seatguru.com for the seat configurations and you can probably find a good premium economy option that will be very comfortable. -Roger