Are you keen to head out exploring next year? Wondering which cities are the best and most accessible to visit? Then we’re here to help.
Here, we take a look at five incredible European cities that are accessible for those living with disabilities or chronic illnesses.
Germany’s capital, Berlin, is a fantastic place to head on a city break. With an amazing art scene, fascinating historical monuments and incredible architecture, there’s something for everyone here. It’s a flat city which makes it easy to navigate for wheelchair users or those who may find it tricky to walk on steep streets.
According to Visit Berlin, “Most U-Bahn (tube) stations, the entire S-Bahn (city railway) network as well as the BVG fleets of buses and ferries are all wheelchair accessible.” They say that “trams can be accessed via a ramp or wheelchair lift” and the “buses are fitted with extendable wheelchair ramps.”
As you explore the city, make sure you visit top historical monuments like the Brandenburg Gate, Berlin Wall Memorial and the striking Berlin Cathedral. Nature buffs should head to the green Tiergarten, the most popular park in the city, while animal lovers will enjoy the beautifully designed Berlin Zoo.
Often referred to as “the city of a hundred spires”, Prague is a breathtakingly beautiful city that sits on the Vltava River in the Czech Republic. It’s packed full of palaces, bridges, towers, church domes, and spires – creating a magical landscape worthy of its nickname.
It is moderately accessible for wheelchair users, with many buildings and hotels having provisions in place for mobility restrictions. The official tourist website for Prague has created a guide on “accessible monuments, gardens, cultural buildings, dining out and shopping” to help you make the most of your stay.
This includes the barrier-free Old Town Hall Tower and the staff-assisted Petřín Mirror Maze. You could also explore the Old Town Square, see the Astronomical Clock, and discover the beautiful Prague Castle – which offers free entry to wheelchair users.
Nestled in the Lazio region, Rome sits on the western edge of Italy’s long peninsula around 15 miles from the Tyrrhenian coastline. With fantastic food, iconic monuments, amazing architecture, and more, there’s a lot to love about Italy’s capital city.
There are plenty of accessible hotels and restaurants to enjoy for those with limited mobility or chronic illness. Many of the tourist attractions are accessible too – including the incredible Pantheon and St. Peter’s Basilica which can be accessed through ramps and lifts.
During your city break you could head on a tour of the Colosseum (which is accessible via lift), the pedestrian-only Piazza Navona, and the breathtaking Sistine Chapel. The Vatican Museum offers step-free access throughout, giving you the opportunity to see the amazing paintings and sculptures on display.
In eastern Austria, you’ll find the magical city of Vienna, which is best known for its awe-inspiring buildings, charming culture, cozy coffee shops, and art scene. Its musical heritage is world-renowned, with the likes of Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert all working and living here during their careers.
Many of the pavements are flat across the city, and the public transport hubs have lifts and ramps. Vienna’s official travel guide says, “Low-floor vehicles operate on almost all streetcar and bus lines in Vienna to make it easier for people with restricted mobility to board and alight.” Plus, “All subway stations and trains are almost entirely wheelchair-accessible” with “guiding strips for the visually impaired.”
As you make your way around the city, check out the incredible St. Stephen’s Cathedral, tantalize your tastebuds at the Chocolate Museum, and explore the beautiful Schönbrunn Palace. Music lovers should also take a trip to the incredible Staatsopera to see the Vienna State Opera.
Geneva is a charming city that sits on the beautiful Lake Léman in Switzerland. It’s best known for its breathtaking natural beauty, with views of the sparkling lake and rugged Alps to enjoy. It’s also brimming with culture and history, with a range of tourist attractions to explore during your visit.
The city is relatively flat, despite the surrounding mountains, making it fairly easy to navigate if you have impaired mobility. You’ll likely need to book a Geneva Airport transfer if you are flying into this airport, but can then take advantage of the extensive public transport system.
There are many buses, trains, trams, and boat services you can use to get around with low floors and ramps that permit access. During your trip, make sure you see the famous Jet d’Eau water fountain (one of the most famous landmarks in the city), as well as the iconic flower clock at the Jardin Anglais.
Which of these incredible cities would you like to visit in 2024?
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I'm Alice and I live with a dizzying assortment of invisible disabilities, including ADHD and fibromyalgia. I write to raise awareness and end the stigma surrounding mental and chronic illnesses of all kinds.