Quickly write down, in order of desirability, the top seven cities or destinations you would like to visit before you die. Odds are that your list will include at least three European cities.
For most people in the United States and Canada, the countries of Europe hold a lasting fascination. It was from the shores of Europe that boats were launched centuries ago which would eventually bring the people who laid the foundations for our own society and were the reason you now see houses for sale in a Scarborough, Ontario and Victorian style homes alongside 33 Lombard Street's Spire condos. Most people in North America can trace their roots back to some country in Europe, and generally these countries continue to hold a fascination for the people of Western culture.
That fascination is largely tied in with our history with these countries. Europe is still the hotbed of arts and cultural preservation to the Western world; it is the historical place where societies overlapped and the first ripples of multiculturalism began to be felt. While you can see unlimited multiculturalism in Downtown Toronto real estate there is little history beyond a couple of hundred years.
Historical tourists typically include France, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Italy among their most desired tourist locations. The big appeals, as far as landmarks in these countries, are well known; all four countries contain the ruins of the Roman Empire (the predecessor for much of our society today) with the most well known still standing in some parts of Italy. France has Paris, internationally known as the most romantic city on the planet. In the UK, you will find Big Ben, as well as Buckingham Palace, still high on the visiting list of many North American visitors. After all, people living in thousands of miles away in Streetsville homes still have the Queen's portait on their pocket change.
Tourists looking for tropic vacations will also find a lot of European countries to their liking. Spain, southern France, Italy, and Greece all border the Mediterranean Sea, one of the most luxurious resort locations to be found in the world. The Spanish Riviera in particular sees thousands of tourists flock to its beaches every year. If Toronto Beaches real estate isn't cutting it, maybe it's time for a Spanish upgrade.
If you only consider the popular countries of Europe, though, you might be missing out on some incredible vacation opportunities. There are 50 different countries on the continent, all of them offering something unique to the tourist who likes to travel off of the beaten path. Looking for the warm weather of Spain without the crowds? Portugal has a different language but is just as rich in history with a culture every bit as colourful. Russia may still have its problems and a lingering reputation due to the Cold War, but the careful tourist can go see historical monuments and landmarks completely closed to Western travellers for more than a generation. Switzerland boasts some of the most beautiful landscapes to be found anywhere in the world, and it is also the home of some of the world's most successful industries, from those doing drug testing to those making textiles for women's online clothing stores.
You won't find the lush rainforests that appeal to eco tourists anywhere in Europe, but you will find countries rich in history and culture. A variety of temperatures and attractions means that the country has an appeal for almost every tourist taste, whether you want to take in Old World style royal dwellings or lie on the beach tanning. It's a truly fascinating destination for anyone.