Summer may be over, but British holidaymakers are taking more holidays than any time in the past five years.

With many already planning their next break of the year, a relaxing holiday on the beach just doesn’t cut it anymore. With so much choice and flexibility, travelers are on the hunt for something, and somewhere, as unique as they are. With city breaks being Brits’ top holiday type last year, followed by beach holidays - alternative destinations are constantly emerging as travelers search for more authentic experiences.

To uncover what makes British holidaymakers tick, ebookers have conducted research into some of the most popular European countries, analyzing each destination and ranking them on a variety of factors to produce the Alternative Holiday Index.

The Alternative Holiday Index ranks 31 cities across Europe by analyzing 24 factors including:

  • Arts and culture
  • Authentic food
  • Interesting architecture
  • Cheap Beer
  • Good for solo travelers
  • Friendly locals

Known for its untouched nature, medieval architecture, and Nordic food, Estonia is revealed to be home of the best alternative holiday destination in Europe.

Estonia’s vast woodland meant the country ranked highly within the ‘Natural beauty and exploration’ category with an index score of ten out of ten.

Estonia also ranked highly for its ‘Instragrammability’ (10/10), authentic high-quality food (10/10), and friendly locals (10/10).

Estonia was followed by Lithuania and Latvia as the best alternative holiday destinations with index scores of 195.6 and 180.9 respectively.

Lithuania ranks particularly high for authentic food (9), nature (10) and romantic settings (9), making it the perfect destination for couples in search of outdoor adventure, great food, and cheap beer (9.13).

Situated between Lithuania and Estonia, Latvia ranks highly across the index – with high index scores for interesting architecture (9), arts and culture (8.71), and ‘Instagrammable’ surroundings (8.71).

Cyprus ranks the highest out of the 32 countries for the ease of finding British food, pubs and home comforts (7.12) and for having a high number of fellow Brits visiting the country (6) each year. However, it is not the best country to visit if you can’t function without a good cuppa, only scoring 5.57 on the index.

On the other end of the spectrum and those looking for an authentic experience in another country’s culture, central and northern Europe offer the best destinations with Slovenia and Slovakia.

Estonia and Slovenia are ideal alternative holiday destinations for Brits wanting to lose themselves in another countries culture and not run the risk of bumping into fellow Brits. With both countries scoring low in the ebookers research for the number of British visitors, travelers can really escape and experience something completely new.  

Explore the full Alternative Holiday Index here