What is the largest, longest or biggest in Europe? Come on a journey with us to find out the best-EST and most-EST that Europe has to offer.
Largest Castle – Prague Castle
In fact, Prague Castle is the largest castle in the world and not just Europe. Dating back to 870, the castle is home to the Bohemian crown jewels, the National Gallery, Toy Museum, Czech history museum and a gallery displaying the history of the castle. Over the years, the castle has been remodeled and, therefore, you will find representations of every architectural style including Gothic St. Vitus Cathedral and Romanesque Basilica of St. George. No visit to Prague is complete without taking a tour of the castle or spending time in one of its many museums.
Tallest Mountain – Mount Elbrus
At 18,510 feet this inactive volcano stands above the rest in this part of the Urals. Located near the Georgian border, Mt Elbrus’ permanent ice cap feeds 22 glaciers which in turn feed into the Baksan, Kuban and Malka rivers. Legend has it, this is the place where Zeus had Prometheus chained to a rock! This mountaineering area will be hosting the 2014 Winter Olympics.
Largest City – Moscow, Russia
The capital of Russia was first mentioned in 1147 and is the most northern city to have a population of over 10 million people. Sitting along the banks of the Moskva River, Moscow has seen the history of Russia play out before its very eyes. To say that Russia’s history has been stormy is an understatement but Moscow has been the capital through the Grand Duchy of Moscow, Tsardom of Russia, Soviet Union and today’s Russia. With the fall of the Iron Curtain Moscow has become quite a tourist destination and no one does not recognize the famous architectural style, the Onion Dome. Sites to be seen include 2 UNESCO World Heritage sites, Red Square and the Kremlin, a zoo, museums, art galleries, 96 parks, 18 gardens and the world famous ballet. One of Moscow’s newest claim to fame is it has the most billionaires (79) than anywhere else beating out NYC!
Northernest City – Hammerfest & Honningsvag, Norway
Seems there is a little disagreement on what constitutes a city which is why there are 2 claimants to the most northern city in Europe. Norwegian law says that to be a city there needs to be a population of at least 5,000 people. Hammerfest is south of Honningsvag but Hammerfest is the only one that meets the city population requirements. Both cities are important fishing and hunting areas with histories dating to prehistoric time. Strange as it may seem for the most northern city, but the ocean off Honningsvag is ice free! Hammerfest has a huge migration of reindeer during the summer.
Longest River – Volga
Ending in the Caspian Sea, this 2,194 mile long river skirts its way through Central Russia after its humble beginning in the Valdai Hills about 200 miles south east of St. Petersburg. Even though the Volga freezes for most of its length for 3 months of the year, it has played a very important role in the movement of people from Asia to Europe during decades past. The Volga estuary, the largest in Europe, is the center of the caviar industry and home to many species of animals including pelicans, flamingos, lotuses and beaver. The river has also endured many wars, much strife by its people, pollution and the destruction of towns to make way for dams. As with other great rivers of the world, if only they could talk the stories we would hear!
Oldest Amusement Park – Tivoli Gardens
Tivoli Gardens is in the center of Copenhagen, Denmark and was opened on August 15, 1843. At this time it was actually outside the city limits but as the city grew the park became one of its central points and is right next to Copenhagen’s central station. Legend says that Walt Disney decided to build Disneyland after visiting Tivoli. The park is best known for its wooden roller coast, which was built in 1914, but today has many other modern roller coasters containing loop-to-loops and zero-G’s. Inside this beautiful park there are performing art theaters, including one dedicated to Pantomime, concert areas, parades and gardens. The park is spectacular at night where it sparkles under the many lights.