Backpacking Europe: 2 Month Itinerary & What To Do While You’re Traveling

2 months backpacking Europe
2 Months Backpacking Europe

We’ve discussed how to plan your Europe backpacking trip, but what happens when you get there? You could fly by the seat of your pants, traveling where the wind takes you. 2 months backpacking Europe is certainly enough time with which to have some spontaneity. On the other hand, if you want to maximize your time and see as many places as possible, some more planning is in order. I crafted a painstakingly down to the day itinerary for my own 2 months backpacking in Europe, but our actual itinerary ended up being quite different. So do a bit of planning before you go, but don’t go too crazy with booking hostels or train tickets, because you never know where the journey may lead you!

 
2 months backpacking Europe
 

2 Months Backpacking Europe

The Itinerary

Stockholm, Sweden – 4 Nights
Brussels, Belgium – 4 Nights
Amsterdam, The Netherlands – 4 Nights
Copenhagen, Denmark – 3 Nights
Berlin, Germany – 5 Nights
Munich, Germany – 2 Nights
Naples, Italy – 4 Nights
Rome, Italy – 3 Nights
Milan, Italy – 1 Night
Corfu, Greece – 6 Nights
Barcelona, Spain – 3 Nights
Paris, France – 4 Nights
Edinburgh, Scotland – 4 Nights
London, England – 3 Nights
Bergen, Norway – 1 Night
Oslo, Norway – 1 Night
Stockholm, Sweden – 1 Night

 
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This itinerary is perfect…if you want to be completely burnt out from travel at the end. Or, perhaps you’re much heartier and more extroverted than I am, in which case…you will still probably be burnt out from travel. I did this journey with my friend Dave, one of the most extraverted people I know, and even he was over moving around and meeting new people by the end of it.

We had a rough outline of our itinerary before starting our 2 months backpacking Europe, but made some last minute decisions to stay longer in some places. Since we decided that after I had already booked my flight home out of Stockholm, some of the places at the end had only 1 night stays. I am a big proponent of slow travel, and therefore urge you to see less in your 2 months backpacking Europe. Ultimately, it will allow you to see more of each place you go.

What To Do & Eat on your Europe Backpacking Trip

By far the hardest decision you’ll have to make is what you want to prioritize on your 2 months backpacking Europe. One thing is for sure: you won’t be able to see it all! Keeping in mind the places I visited on my own trip, here are my recommendations:

Stockholm, Sweden

This Scandinavian capital city is known for it’s sleek design (and beautiful people tbh). In the summertime, especially when we visited on Midsummer, almost no one is actually in the city. Most people go out to the islands, or to their country home. Make sure you stock up on alcohol when you can!

 
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What To Do in Stockholm

  • Go to Skansen, an open air folk museum and zoo featuring Scandinavian animals. Get a feel for what Sweden was like during the ‘olden days.’ We also saw some bear cubs playing with an iPhone someone had dropped while we were there.
  • Check out the Vasa Museum, a museum housing the world’s only preserved ship from the 17th century.
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    2 months backpacking Europe
     

    What To Eat in Stockholm

  • The Vegetarian Buffet at Hermitage for a reasonably affordable lunch out.
  • Sweden is known for ‘Fika,’ or the concept of having coffee and perhaps a pastry or two. Definitely sit your butt down for a killer cappuccino, cinnamon bun and some people watching in one of Stockholm’s squares.
  • Brussels, Belgium

    Brussels is not really a place I was super keen to visit, and our first impression certainly did nothing to dispel our ambivalence. However, this is a city that really charmed us by the end of our short visit. Give Brussels a chance!

     
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    What To Do in Brussels

  • Admire La Grand-Place. The central square in Brussels, and some of the most breathtaking architecture you’ll see in all of Europe. This is also a meeting spot for just about everyone in Brussels. There wasn’t a day we didn’t pass through this beautiful square.
  • Go to Musee Magritte, a museum all about the surreal artist, Magritte. It takes you through his works from beginning to end. It’s a fascinating way to see the development of an artist through the years.
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    What To Eat in Brussels

  • What’s NOT to eat in Brussels, more like it! Brussels was my favorite eating city on our 2 months backpacking Europe by far. Definitely get some ‘frites,’ Belgian fries that come in a cone with ketchup and mayonnaise to dip them in. YUM!
  • Belgian Waffles. Oh. My. God. You can either get the traditional Brussels style waffle, crisp and light, or Liège style, caramelized and chewy. My favorite is definitely Liège! The best place we found for waffles was actually a truck right outside Musee Magritte!
  • Belgian beer! I wasn’t really a beer drinker prior to visiting Belgium, and tasting the beer there. This stuff is no joke, though. The alcohol content in these beers means that I was buzzed after only one or two! (I may or may not be a light weight)
  • Amsterdam, The Netherlands

    Amsterdam is most often referred to as the ‘party city’ of Western Europe. We hardly partied at all here, preferring chatting with our local friend at a cozy bar than partaking some legal drug activities, but we still had a blast! It’s really easy to see things and eat on a budget in Amsterdam, which makes it perfect for backpackers.

     
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    2 months backpacking Europe
     

    What To Do in Amsterdam

  • Wander along, or even ride along, the canals. The canal system is what makes Amsterdam such a unique city. I was content simply walking along, snapping photos, and enjoying the architecture. You can also opt to see Amsterdam from a different perspective, by going on a canal tour. This is a popular tourist activity, but one that I’d say is highly worth it.
  • If you get tired of wandering, why not pop into one of Amsterdam’s coffee shops? These are no ordinary coffee shops, however, and you should only enter if you enjoy cannabis, or don’t mind being around people who do.
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  • Check out one of Amsterdam’s top notch museums. The Van Gogh Museum, the Anne Frank House (be prepared with tissues), or the modern art Stedelijk Museum are three great choices. It might be worth it to you to buy an Amsterdam City Pass which includes admission to museums, airport train tickets, and the aforementioned canal cruise.
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    2 months backpacking Europe
     

    Copenhagen, Denmark

    Another Scandinavian capital, Copenhagen is the height of hipster-cool. Bike around the city, hang out at sleekly designed coffee shops (ones that serve coffee), or view some underground art. I felt out of place walking around Copenhagen in my standard backpacker attire. I would suggest packing at least one outfit that would be deemed ‘acceptable’ by Copenhagen standards if you’re to come here on your 2 months backpacking Europe.

     
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    What To Do in Copenhagen

  • Admire the canals, again. This is another city where the canal tour is worth it. Make sure you snap a photo of the most photographed row of houses in Copenhagen (maybe in Europe?)
  • Go to Denmark’s National Aquarium! Not only is the building itself a unique bit of architecture, but what’s inside is pretty great too. I have to admit, I’m not the biggest fan of aquariums (or anywhere that animals aren’t allowed to roam freely) but this one almost changed my mind.
  • Check out Tivoli, an amusement park. Walt Disney came up with the idea for Epcot after visiting here, and you’ll see why if you go.
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    2 months backpacking Europe
     
    2 months backpacking Europe
     

    What To Eat in Copenhagen

  • I only remember eating one thing in Copenhagen, and I’m not sure if it’s because this was so sublime that it made me forget about everything else, or if I really didn’t eat anything else in Copenhagen. It is the cinnamon bun at The Coffee Collective. The coffee was also absolutely amazing.
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    Berlin, Germany

    Oh dear. I know I was supposed to have fallen in love with Berlin, but I just didn’t. I enjoyed my time there, for sure, but I just didn’t have that feeling. The one I feel for New York and Paris, and that I felt plenty of times on this trip as well. That’s also the downside of only staying in each place for 3-4 days. I didn’t get a chance to see beyond the tourist side of Berlin.

     
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    2 months backpacking Europe
     

    What To Do in Berlin

  • Walk around the ‘Central Park of Berlin,’ Tiergarten.
  • Pay your respects at the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, and learn more about the horrors of the Holocaust in the Information Centre.
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    2 months backpacking Europe
     

  • Visit Hamburger Bahnhof, a contemporary art museum. When I was there, the entire downstairs was a sculpture exhibit. There was a sculpture made out of wax, that had candles in it that slowly melted the sculpture. One sculpture looked so real that it freaked me out when I realized it wasn’t moving.
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    2 months backpacking Europe

    Munich, Germany

    I enjoyed Munich much more than Berlin. It felt warmer (both in actual temperature and in vibe) and I loved the architecture. We only had one real ‘sightseeing’ day in Munich, and we sure made it count! I’m pretty sure we walked around almost all of the city that day. The good news is, it’s an extremely walkable city. But don’t forget to pack comfy walking shoes!

     
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    What To Do in Munich

  • Enjoy Englischer Garten. This is a huge park, with lots to choose from. A few options I recommend are sitting by the river (some people were floating down it, but it didn’t seem quite warm enough for that), watching surfers catch waves on said river, and even partaking in some nude sunbathing, if that’s your thing. I can’t say I’ve ever had the urge to go to a nude beach or anything like that, but I had to say yes when I had the opportunity, right? There is a specific section of the park for this particular activity. It will probably be quite obvious where that section is.
  • Do a walking tour like we did, popping into churches along the way. We hadn’t yet gotten church fatigue at this point in our 2 months backpacking Europe.
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    2 months backpacking Europe
     

    What To Drink in Munich

  • I mean, you’re in the home of the original Hofbraeuhaus, why on earth wouldn’t you pay a visit? (Assuming you drink of course!) This is the place to be for beers as big as your face.
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    Naples, Italy

    Ah, Napoli. The gateway to the Amalfi coast, and a real anomaly. There is nowhere quite like Naples! This rough and tumble city offers a lot to travelers, even though we mainly did day trips to the world renowned sights nearby. The good news is, Naples makes the perfect jumping off point for doing exactly that! But if you want to stay close to home, there is plenty to keep you occupied in town.

     
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    What To Do in (And Around) Naples

  • Climb to the highest point of the city for an amazing view of Mount Vesuvius and the surrounding area. Castel Sant’Elmo offers some of the best views. We got there too late to see the castle, but ate dinner on a terrace nearby. I mean, if this isn’t the ultimate view to go with your meal, I don’t know what is.
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  • Go to Positano “the most beautiful” town on the Amalfi Coast. Our hostel owner sat us down when we first got there, and told us exactly where to go each day of our three day stint in Naples. When he got to Positano he told us we MUST go there, as it was “the most beautiful” of all. Well, he wasn’t wrong.
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  • Go to another, less touristy, Amalfi Coast town than Capri. I may be in the minority here, but I thought Capri was vastly overrated. It could have been that we visited in July, prime tourist time, but I was thoroughly unimpressed. I mean, there’s no denying its’ stunning natural beauty. However, I think you can experience the same (or close) experience by going to another town in Amalfi, and you’ll have a much more enjoyable time.
  • What To Eat in Naples

  • Our hostel owner told us just about everything we needed to do in the area. The one non-negotiable, in his opinion, was getting a pizza at Da Michele. Remember the pizza Elizabeth Gilbert/Julia Roberts ate in Eat Pray Love? This is that pizza. Lines be damned, just do it.
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    Rome, Italy

    Why is Italy so amazing? This was my second time in Rome, and it was even better than the first! (It must be down to throwing that coin in the Trevi Fountain!) What is there to say about Rome that hasn’t already been said?

     
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    What To Do in Rome

  • Ruins and fountains and squares, oh my! Honestly, the best thing to do in Rome is just to walk for hours. Really take your time and do it the Italian way, stopping for food every hour or so.
  • Two super touristy attractions that are worth the wait and crowds? Vatican City and St. Peter’s Basilica. There’s a reason they’re popular. I was in awe.
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    Milan, Italy

    We only spent one day in Milan, and mostly just hung out with our local friend and did a little walking tour. Since I have nothing of value to offer, check out this post on how to do one day in Milan on the cheap.

     
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    Corfu, Greece

    From Milan, we took a quick cheap flight to Corfu, Greece. We were going to do the ferry route, which is an option from the South of Italy, but it just seemed impractical when we could fly for so little. What started as a 3 night, 4 day trip to Greece ended up being a 6 night, 7 day vacation from our vacation. And it was sorely needed. When you’re traveling so much in such a short amount of time, you need to factor in downtime as well!

     
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    What To Do in Corfu

  • Lay on the beach. We didn’t do much more than this, to be perfectly honest. Occasionally, when we got too hot, we would hop in the crystal clear, warm Ionian Sea.
  • What To Eat in Corfu

  • We stayed a short walk away from the small town of Agios Georgios. I don’t remember the names of any of the places we ate. Rather, I remember walking into town in the morning and getting a frozen coffee at the same small family owned cafe, usually with a delicious Greek pastry. I also remember the traditional Greek meal we had at a restaurant in town.
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    2 months backpacking Europe
    The Pink Palace, the hostel we stayed at in Corfu. A real party place, but an amazing deal as dinner is included!

    Barcelona, Spain

    Barcelona stands out starkly in my mind as one of the top destinations from our 2 months backpacking Europe. This has less to do with the city itself, thought Barcelona is an amazing city, and more to do with the local family we stayed with and the people we met. When you go on a long trip like we did, ultimately what sticks out are the relationships formed. That’s one of the reasons I love backpacking so much – the opportunity to meet people, whether by staying with a local family or in a hostel.

     
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    What To Do in Barcelona

  • Go to the famous food market, La Boqueria. Just be prepared for the crowds.
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  • Go to Parc Guell, another popular tourist attraction that’s well worth it. You’ll never go to another park this unique.
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    2 months backpacking Europe
    Can’t beat em? Join em! Can you spot me?

  • If you can swing it, check out one of the local beaches further out from the city center. Our new Castilian friends brought us to one and it was a major highlight.
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    Paris, France

    If you’ve been reading this blog for a while now, you’ll know that Paris is one of my favorite places in the world. I don’t care how cliche this makes me, it’s the truth. It’s one of my dearest dreams to be able to live there one day.

     
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    What To Do in Paris

  • I’ve actually already written a post about how to spend 3 days in Paris for First Timers. I’ve included just about everything I’ve ever done in Paris in that post.
  • What To Eat in Paris

  • Is this a joke? Eat everything. Seriously. All of the foods.
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    Edinburgh, Scotland

    Edinburgh is another great love of mine. It’s impossible to tell what captured me more: the dark gothic nature of the city contrasted with the friendly locals and colorful shops. Or the fact that J.K. Rowling wrote much of the first Harry Potter books here, in a cafe called The Elephant House. Any place that has such a close connection to the book series I love so much is a place I want to be. Always.

     
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    What To Do in Edinburgh

  • If you’re lucky enough to travel to Edinburgh in August, take advantage of one of the festivals this city is known for. When we went, we got to experience the Fringe Festival. You won’t be able to walk a foot without getting invited to a performance of some kind!
  • The views from the Edinburgh Castle are stellar.
  • Go on a Harry Potter walking tour. Or DIY like I did when I couldn’t find the group’s meeting place!
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    What To Eat in Edinburgh

  • A traditional Scottish breakfast. Oh my haggis.
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    Well, there you have it, the ultimate guide to 2 months backpacking Europe! Has this inspired you to do a Eurotrip of your own? Look out for much more Europe coverage in the near future, as I’m currently in Eastern Europe and planning on being here for the next month and a half! Let me know in the comments where you would go on your 2 months backpacking Europe.

    Happy Exploring, Wherever You Are!

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    12 comments

    1. I’m genuinely impressed – I know first hand how much planning and research goes into putting together a trip of this magnitude! And you have a pretty epic itinerary! Thanks for sharing your hard work with everyone – I’ve always loved the idea of going with the flow and traveling with spontaneity, though when it comes down to it I’ve never been able to not plan :D! I realized pretty quickly that not having a plan, in my case at least, means I waste a lot of time on research once I get to a destination when I could be out there exploring 🙂

      1. Thanks, Megan!! I think if you only have two months and you’re trying to fit in as much as we did, planning is essential! Also, I really do enjoy the act of planning 😀 You’re right about wasting time doing research. I don’t do much planning these days as I am on an open ended trip, but I spend SO much time just sitting in my airbnb/hostel or whatever researching the best places for coffee/food. I’m also very indecisive though, so that may be why! haha

    2. It’s been a million years since I last backpacked through Europe. I feel so old lol. This post took me back to so many wonderful memories. I practically lived on crepes in Paris, not least of all because that’s all that I could afford. I really need to get back soon (sans the backpack of course!)

      1. Hahaha..amazing! Yes, Paris is actually really easy to eat well for little money! Picnics were my savior. Of course, you can also eat really well for a lot of money in Paris, and that’s not terrible either 😉

    3. This is a great summary of your backpacking trip. I definitely understand how exhausting “quick” travel can be – I did only a week of being in cities for 1-2 days max and was exhausted by the end of it! We are not backpackers, but are making our way around Europe on weekend trips from London, so I’ll keep this post handy for reference!

      1. Yeah, quick travel burns me out so quickly! Hahah..funny how that is! People are surprised when I stay in a city for 6 days, but really there’s so much to see even in a small town that it’s not hard to find things to do. So cool that you can do weekend trips from London! Where are your top picks of places to go?

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