European Vacation Rentals:
A Home Away From Home
ABOVE: In Venice, our family of five rented a
three-bedroom garden apartment behind this doorway for less than US $1,000 a
Save money (and feel like a local) with a holiday apartment or cottage in Europe.
B&Bs, and pensions are likely to be your accommodations of choice when
you're traveling alone or spending only a few days at your destination. But for
longer stays, or when traveling a family, there's an even better option: renting
a furnished apartment, villa, chalet, or cottage by the week.
Over the years, my family has enjoyed this "self-catering" approach
in destinations such as:
- Copenhagen: A spacious two-bedroom, two-bath apartment with Danish
modern furnishings and patio in a suburban holiday center on the beach.
- Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany: Two studio apartments in a modern
townhouse near the city center, one with a terrace overlooking a garden and
the spire of the nearby cathedral.
- Sondervig, Denmark: A modern three-bedroom brick cottage with
thatched roof and sauna amid the dunes of Jutland's North Sea coast.
- Radstadt, Austria: A vacation cottage with its own garden, close to
a dairy farm where we bought fresh milk from the cowherd.
- Bornholm, Denmark: A two-bedroom vacation apartment on an island in
the Baltic Sea, with horse-riding lessons for our children at no extra cost.
- Thun, Switzerland: A lakeside apartment in a medieval town between
the Swiss capital of Bern and the Bernese Oberland resort of Interlaken.
More space for less money
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Need a car in Europe?
If you live outside the EU,
a tax-free Renault or Peugeot tourist car lease can be cheaper than renting
for visits of 21+ days. Minimum driver age is 18, there' s no upper age
limit, and rates include insurance.
For car rentals under 21 days:
Traveling by train?
Get free schedules, maps,
and guides for 50+ European railroads. (Residents of North and Central
America can buy tickets and rail passes online.)
From Durant and Cheryl Imboden:
About Europe for Visitors