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National Parks in Europe: Introduction

Discover Europe's natural wonders and find out where is the perfect spot for you to plan your holiday! Hiking enthusiasts, photographers, cyclists and all nature and sports lovers, get ready to meet Europe!

Europe definitely has her beauty and it’s surprisingly unique in every corner, with a vast diversity in climate, relief, biodiversity and culture. The old continent will surely conquer your heart within the first second you will step on its land. 

So it’s time to mark some important points on each of your travelers’ maps and start preparing for the adventure of literary touching these pieces of Heaven on Earth!

Before hopping down the road, I will open this series with some general notes, aspects and good to know information. So let’s start with some rules regarding the national parks from Europe.

  • Fire in the woods! So, we are clear here? No fire in the woods/nature unless you are in special designated areas that permit this. 
  • Wild camping - in most of the countries wild camping is forbidden but there are some exceptions or some that are more tolerant regarding this, but as a general rule, you should know that inside the boundaries of National Parks most probably you are not allowed to camp unless there is a camping area. I gathered some info about European countries and their acceptance for wild camping:
    • Illegal: Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Croatia, Greece, Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, UK, Portugal, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia
    • Tolerant: France, Macedonia, Switzerland, Italy, Ireland
    • Legal: România, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Poland, Spain, Albania, Serbia, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Bosnia Herzegovina
As a general advice, please check before leaving, don’t take for granted the above information as they might change in time and they are purely as guidance! 
  • Leave it as it is! What I am about to emphasize here is that, for the sake of our short checklist, you should know by now that we have to leave the place clean, with no pollution or leftovers. If you carried your stuff to your destination, then I am sure, you can also take it with you on your way out.
  • No art on the trees! This is a separate item for the ones that feel an itchy need to carve their “love” or presence on the trees. In Eastern Europe mostly you will see this but don’t take it as a good sign or standard. This is not a “must do”!
  • Do not touch the flowers! Well, if you want a nice vivid memory of some flowers try the camera! Really, don’t destroy the flowers for your egoistic two days pleasure of looking at them in a vase back house. For some flowers, you could end up in jail! 
  • Respect water! Because we are in the wilds, it sure is important yo know where you can drink water from and not only for you but for others that will come as well, so do not pollute it under any circumstances!
  • Follow the path! Not only because you might get lost if you do not do this, but also because touristic paths were designed like this also to protect the flora and fauna around.
  • Emergency signal! It’s always good to announce when you go up in the mountains, speak with the park rangers or inform yourself about the emergency telephones, try some emergency apps if possible or make sure you know what to do in case you are in trouble and technology is not an option. The international signals:
    • Announcing the signal: 6 light/sonar signals per minute, at 10 seconds interval. One minute break and then do it again and again until you will get help. 
    • Answering the signal: 3 light/sonar signals per minute, at 20 seconds interval. One minute break and then repeat as many times as necessary
  • Taking your pets! Regularly, we can take with us our four feet walking friends as long as you make sure there is no danger for the other people around or for your pet. You will have to be careful in some countries like Romania, for example, because here most likely bringing your pet with you might put you in danger. Why? Well it’s simple, we have many shepherds with many sheep and many dogs that are well trained to protect their territory. So my advice, think twice before you take this decision.

So if we are clear here, I will further take you on a journey where we will visit different places, national parks and countries. This will remain the introductory article and step by step, in time, I will add destinations to the below list.

I warn you, I will share with you irresistible travel ideas, so get ready to click on the links and start packing already! 

Shall we, my traveler friends?

National Parks in Europe: Introduction Reviewed by Karina on 11:28 Rating: 5


  1. In regards to wild camping above in respect of Bulgaria you state that it is legal to wild camp, is this correct, as I have read a few times that it is prohibited to camp anywhere in Bulgaria except designated camping zones? If it is illegal what were your experiences wild camping in relation to the tolerance of authorities as I would like to do this and it would save me money too? Great site btw!

    1. Hi Joe,

      Thanks, we are glad you find the info helpful. We asked around and people in Bulgaria told us it is tolerated (not necessarily legal, but authorities don't mind as long as you don't make camp fires or litter). Furthermore we wild camped in Rila National Park, close to Musala Hut and we had absolutely no problem.

      Have a great adventure,
      Alex and Karina


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