1. London. A brilliantly diverse and energetic city bursting with history, pageantry and attractions including the British Museum, Buckingham Palace and the Tower of London.
2. Paris. A cultural feast of handsome architecture, fantastic food and great sights such as the Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame and the Louvre.
3. Rome. All roads lead to Rome and rightly so. It is city of rich culture and many wonders. Don’t miss the Vatican, the Coliseum, the many fine churches and fountains.
4. Venice. Many people find it the most magical and fascinating city in the world. It offers a unique combination of beautiful classical architecture, mediaeval streets, romantic squares and winding canals. Unforgettable.
5. St. Petersburg. The magnificent heart of imperial Russia. Packed with breath-taking architecture and the marvellous Hermitage museum.
6. Amsterdam. A city of step-gabled houses, picturesque canals and cobbled streets. Its many attractions range from the red light district to the Van Gogh museum.
7. Barcelona. A vibrant Catalan city on the Mediterranean. Its energy radiates from the central streets known as the Ramblas. The city of Gaudi and his wonderful art and architecture.
8. Berlin. The German capital is lively, elegant and sophisticated. It has a wonderful mix of classical and modern architecture together with great history, museums and nightlife.
9. Florence. 300 ancient palaces press down onto the narrow mediaeval streets of this most wonderful city. It contains the most amazing collection of Renaissance art – particularly at the Uffizi Galleries.
10. Vienna. A city redolent with the baroque masterpieces of the Austro-Hungarian empire. A delightfully civilised and comfortable city ideal for lovers of music and art.
11. Prague. One of the most beautiful cities in Europe with splendid architecture and sights.
12. Madrid. The highest capital in Europe and one of the liveliest. Its great treasure is the Prado museum.
How could I possibly leave out Athens, Edinburgh, Lisbon, Dublin, Munich, Riga, Copenhagen or Warsaw? They are wonderful – but first visit the magnificent twelve above.