It's no secret we love a good, free walking tour. They are usually led by locals and are pretty entertaining. Plus, they are a fantastic way to get a feel for the city and find things you may want to go back and explore later. I love that you usually get the history of what you're seeing, which really helps to put things in context. Plus, you get personal recommendations of places to go, restaurants to eat at, and pubs to grab a beer at, all from the people who actually go to those places. It's a win-win really. But sometimes the hardest part is finding the free tours, and then deciding which ones to go on! We've done the hard work for you and put together this list of 8 walking tours - all of which are FREE except for one! - that you can take on your European holiday. We've been on most of them and can vouch for their awesomeness :)
We had planned on only doing one walking tour in Bruges, but ended up doing two we liked the company so much! Legends of Bruges offers two free walking tour options - a day one and a night one. They follow different routes, so if you do decide to go on both, you won't see the same stuff, just at a different time of day. As an added bonus, you also get a FREE beer at a local pub!
This was one of our first free walking tours! We had planned on going on the Sandeman's tour, but we got there late due to some travel difficulties and the tour had already left. Boo. Some quick googling over tapas led me to Runner Bean tours. They offer a couple different walking tours, but we opted for the Old City tour. Our guides were amazing and they were able to show us some hidden and off-beat spots in the Gothic neighborhood in Barcelona. If we ever get back there, I'd love to go on their Gaudi tour!
There are a lot of free tours that operate in Prague. This time, we opted for the Sandeman's tour. It was pretty good and our guide was really friendly. They hooked us into doing a paid tour of the castle in the afternoon (the cost was small, so almost free). While Sandeman's is one of the most popular free walking tour companies in Europe, they are also one of the busiest. You do get a very good quality tour, but so do 35 of your closest friends!
We waited until closer to the end of our lang weekend in Krakow to go on a walking tour, but wish we had earlier. The tour group we opted for meets, conveniently, right in the main square, and takes you throughout the old town ending at Wawel Castle, but also covering the main cathedral and lots of points of interest regarding Saint John Paul II (he was born and raised not far from Krakow, so he is super popular in the area).
All tour guides in Rome, even the free ones, must be licensed, which means you get a high quality tour every single time. We did two different ones with one company - Rome Free Walking Tour. They took us to all the big highlights of Rome - Piazza Navona, Spanish Steps, Castel Sant'Angelo, the Vatican, Parthenon, Trevi Fountain, and Piazza Venezia. You get to wind your way through the back streets of Rome with incredibly knowledgeable guides, hearing the history of the sights you're visiting. They definitely gave context to some of the less popular, but no less significant, Roman ruins.
6) Rome #2
So many free (and paid!) tours in Rome! We did an evening tour of some of the lesser-known sights of Rome and loved it! The hosting company is Free Tour Rome Our guide was a hoot and gave the tour a very personal touch, telling us stories of her grandmother and herself.
As one of the oldest and largest cities in Europe, there are tons of tours in London. London is also incredibly haunted, so I was looking for a ghost tour of the ancient city. We ended up going on a Jack the Ripper tour that retraced the locations in which the world's most famous serial killer committed his heinous crimes. This tour, which is led by an off-duty Yeoman warder (Tower of London guard), wasn't free, but was pretty cheap, and definitely worth it!
While we have been to Munich multiple times, we never actually went on a free walking tour there. However, this one hits up all the big tourist spots and has fantastic reviews on Trip Advisor, so they are definitely worth checking out. I will say that while you're in Munich make SURE you visit one of the biergartens (there is one at Englischer garden) and have a beer (or radler, half beer, half lemonade) in a 1 liter stein. I feel like this is a Munich tradition no one should miss!
Paris is pretty big so getting around to see the main sights yourself can be pretty difficult and involve a lot of navigating the subway system on your own. For this reason, do yourself a favor, especially if you have limited time, and check out a free walking tour. This company offers a ton of different tours, most of which are free, that cover everything from Sacre Coeur to Nortre Dame to the Lourve.
In February, we are headed to Portugal and Spain for a week and Seville is on our list of cities to visit. After some research, I think this is the company we will go with. They offer a couple different free tours of the city and the Jewish quarter and a couple paid ones.
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Do you have a waking tour you could recommend? Bonus points if it's free!