Mobility scooter travelers that have visited Europe will tell you that every city has its advantages, but there are some you should altogether avoid if you are traveling with a scooter. These are 4 cities that we think should be on your radar, because they’re the easiest to explore from the comfort of your mobility scooter. So, take your pick and grab your scooter and go!
In our relentless quest to encourage you to get out there and see the world from the comfort of your mobility scooter, we’ve composed a short list of 4 European cities that are both scooter-friendly, accessible and a great place to start.
1. Barcelona, Spain
With its delightful tapas, remarkable history and architecture and the added value of a warm and inviting people, Barcelona is a must-see for anyone. The fact that this one-of-a-kind city is also largely flat and wheelchair and mobility scooter friendly makes it number one on our list. Barcelona gives disabled people priority and grants free access to its many breathtaking landmarks. Most buses and metro trains are equipped with ramps and lifts, and you do not have to endure the standing in the often-very-long lines to see the city’s attractions. We suggest you ride along the famous La Rambla that leads all the way to the white beaches that are accessed with wooden paths that go all the way to the water’s edge. You can also visit the Barcelona’s medieval city center which has very few cobblestones and provides for a smoother ride than delivered by many other European cities like Paris or Istanbul. If required, there are many accessible hotels to choose from across town, and you can also book one of the wonderful accessible cruises that depart from the town’s port.
2. Berlin, Germany
Berlin is a true cosmopolitan city with 4 varying quarters and a “something for everyone” dynamic. Berlin is also a very flat, highly accessible city, but its culture and vibe couldn’t be more different to Barcelona. With hundreds of hotels to choose from and so much history and culture to explore, Berlin is a sound choice for any age and group configuration, but it’s also a great city to see on your own. The Berlin Zoo is a great place for anyone to spend an entire day exploring, regardless of age or mobility capabilities. Hiring a professional tour guide to take you to visit some of the city’s hidden sites like Hitler’s famous bunker, will give you the full and intriguing story of this bustling metropolis. There are many beautiful parks and interesting museums all over the city, so try to read up and plan a daily itinerary so you can take it all in. Most landmarks in Berlin will prioritize disabled access and offer free or discounted entrance. Note: If you are planning on taking the local subway, the U-Bahn, make sure you check that the elevators at each station you plan to use are in order.
3. Rotterdam, Netherlands
Although many people associate the Netherlands with Amsterdam as the country’s capitol, Rotterdam is in fact the country’s business center. The city is also famous for its many attractions and variety of activities, the majority of which are scooter and wheelchair accessible. There are plenty of museums and some must see architectural sites with access, including the Markthal food square, koopgoot shopping center, cubic houses and the Euromast tower. There are many ways to take this guided tour either using a tour van or taking an accessible harbor cruise depending on your preference. Rotterdam should also be high on your list due to its close vicinity to its accessible beach that features a path to the highest water mark, free beach wheelchairs and walking aids. Spend a full day at this lovely beach or opt for a day exploring the city’s famous botanical gardens. Almost all of Rotterdam’s bus stops are accessible. The people of Rotterdam are very friendly and highly tolerant, and as the entire country is known for its flat terrain, Rotterdam and the area are quite easily covered in a week’s fun-filled holiday.
4. Ljubljana, Slovenia
Last but not least on our list today is Lubliana, the capitol city of Slovenia. Slovenia has taken huge strides in improving the accessibility of its tourist facilities and transportation system. The city’s capital Ljubljana has introduced priority access and discounts to mobility impaired and disabled persons for its many cultural and historical sites. Make sure to kick off your adventure with a visit to the Ljubljana Castle, one of Slovenia’s most visited tourist attractions that has been made accessible over recent years. Alternatively, spend a day exploring the accessible local Zoo for a refreshing day out. Slovenia is also famous for its many caves and the Postojna Cave offers disabled friendly access, parking and toilets. The site’s friendly staff are available to help visitors board the small tourist train that takes them underground. Ljubljana is home to many museums and art galleries and the general atmosphere across the city is lively and welcoming.
Now that we’ve made our recommendations and given you some basic information, it is important to keep in mind that despite the increasing possibilities, it is still vital to plan ahead. If you will be traveling by plane, make sure you read our post about choosing a scooter that is suitable for flying. And most important – make sure to share your adventures with us so that we can enrich our community and encourage others to follow through!
Where have you been with your scooter and what would you recommend?