The Mediterranean belt is the most spectacular part of Europe that is bestowed with the best offerings of nature. With an eclectic mix of sandy beaches, cascading waterfalls and surreal forests, it's no wonder this region is every traveler's daydream. The Mediterranean countries boast of a rich cultural heritage that dates back to the ancient civilizations, which all flourished here centuries ago. Remnants of the glorious past are preserved today in the form of architectural wonders, monuments and the various art forms. The astonishingly blue Mediterranean waters are speckled with countless tiny islands that provide stunning views, delectable cuisine, and breathtaking nature. These islands are a great representation of the best that Europe has to offer. Following are some of the most incredible gems of Mediterranean Europe that capture the splendor of this region in all its glory.
Adorning the clear waters of the Aegean Sea is the beautiful Greek island of Paros. The quaint villages are replete with the white and blue architecture that is characteristic to Greece. The beaches are bustling with activity till the late night thanks to tourists who revel in the famous nightlife of this island. The Golden Beach provides a cool sea breeze that is perfect for kite-surfing and windsurfing, whereas the sun-drenched beaches of Santa Maria and Kolymbithres are equally popular. Hikers can set off on one of the many hiking trails, which are perfect for absorbing the region's architectural marvels and natural beauty.
The island houses various windmills, Venetian ruins, and monasteries that whisper the tales of the bygone era. The olive trees and other vegetation of the region thrive in the temperate climate and provide an emerald green cover to the inland. The cobbled streets, flanked by houses with tiny colorful doors, paint an inviting picture that speaks of the welcoming nature of the inhabitants of this enchanting island.
Minorca is a beautiful Spanish island in the Mediterranean Sea, most famous for its diverse landscapes. The island provides a burst of colors, from the reddish sand of the northern beaches to the resplendent green pine groves that surround the coves in the south. Most of the beaches are sandy, but there are a few rocky ones with pebbles too. The waters surrounding this island are ideal for activities like diving, sailing and also fishing. Minorca actually offers particularly great spots for rock fishing, while the equipment is readily available for rent.
Needless to say, the cuisine of this region is dominated by fresh seafood, ranging from delicious squid to tasty lobsters. This is a quiet part of Spain where travelers come to relax at the beach in the warm and sunny weather. A peaceful stroll through its rich nature is a perfect way to spend an afternoon. While you are at it, don't forget to carry a pair of binoculars for spotting some of the protected bird species indigenous to this region.
The undisputed beauty of Croatia brings plethora of tourists to the island of Brac located in the Adriatic Sea. The glowing white houses and buildings of the island are constructed using the limestone from the local quarries. Although Brac is not as densely vegetated as some of the other Croatian islands, it is home to the rare "buhavica "species of olives, making the olive oil produced on this island well known all across the world. The most famous attraction of this island is the Zlatni Rat beach, which is a horn-shaped protrusion of land that projects outwards into the azure waters of Adriatic. Pictures cannot do justice to this marvelous beach.
While the southern part of the island has sandy beaches and restaurants, the northern part has a rocky terrain and provides a glimpse into the local culture. Visit Skrip, the oldest settlement on the island, where the Museum of Brac tells the historical tale of this region. Also situated here are the Museum of Olive Oil and some beautiful churches and castles that are relics from a magnificent past. Since sailing in Croatia is a quite popular activity, you can also enjoy yacht spotting in the local harbor. Or even set the sails yourself around the island as well.
These islands are some of the most unique and well treasured gems of the Mediterranean region, and as such present excellent destination for a relaxing vacation. The warm sunshine and the spellbinding scenery of these islands are truly magical, and for sure, you'll carry some wonderful memories back home.