The Best Non-Schengen Countries in Europe for Nomads in 2024

Non Schengen Countries in Europe

If you’re visiting Europe and want to know how to stay longer than 90 days on a Schengen visa, discover the rest of Europe with these non Schengen countries where you can reset your visa.

the best non schengen countries in Europe

The Best Non-Schengen Countries in Europe for Nomads in 2023

If you’re a digital nomad or just want to stay in Europe long-term and you’re traveling to Europe on a Schengen Visa or visiting Europe from a country that doesn’t require a specific Schengen visa, like the USA, Australia, or Canada,  and you’re interested in staying in Europe for longer than the allowed 90 days, you’ll need to know how to move around the continent so that you don’t overstay your legal welcome in the Schengen area.

Note that starting in November 2023, you will need a visa to enter Europe! You can learn more about this new visa requirement, known as the  ETIAS Visa, here. Visa policy is constantly changing, so check back frequently. And remember, no matter your visa status, you always need to have a valid passport when entering Europe from another continent!

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What is the Schengen Zone?

What is the Schengen Zone and what are you even talking about?! If you have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about, don’t fear, you can learn more on my detailed guide to the Schengen area here.

But the basic gist is that there are 27 countries in Europe that signed what is called the Schengen Agreement. These Schengen Agreement countries have all decided not to require border controls while traveling between them.

Keep in mind that you can have a Schengen country within and without the European Union. Being part of the EU does not automatically mean that it is part of the Schengen area. And being outside of the Europen Union doesn’t mean that you’re not in the Schengen area.

This means you can travel freely between these 27 Schengen region countries without having to even pull out your passport! It sounds nice, doesn’t it? Well, it is until you decide you want to stay longer than 90 days.

Here's a Short Cut

Schengen Countries List

So which countries are in the Schengen Area? There are 51 countries in Europe, and 26 of them are in the Schengen Visa countries. Non-EU Schengen countries are also included. Some non-EU countries can be in or out of the Schengen, so keep that in mind. Yes, I know it’s complicated. Focus on the lists, that will help. This list of Schengen countries is current as of February 2023. Keep in mind, that things do change, though I try to keep this up to date.  

  1. Austria
  2. Belgium
  3. Croatia (this is a new addition)
  4. Czechia
  5. Denmark
  6. Estonia
  7. Finland
  8. France
  9. Germany
  10. Greece
  11. Hungary
  12. Iceland
  13. Italy
  14. Latvia
  15. Liechtenstein
  16. Lithuania
  17. Luxembourg
  18. Malta
  19. Netherlands
  20. Norway
  21. Poland
  22. Portugal
  23. Slovakia
  24. Slovenia
  25. Spain
  26. Sweden
  27. Switzerland

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Schengen Area Map

This Schengen countries map will help you to see which are Schengen Area countries. Basically, everything in beige is up for grabs if you’re looking for non-Schengen countries in Europe.

Note: As of 2023 Croatia has now joined the Schengen Agreement

How Long Can I Stay in the Schengen Zone?

As a US citizen or a holder of a valid Schengen Visa,  you are only allowed to stay within the Schengen Area for up to 90 days every 180 days.  This is a rolling 90 days, meaning that technically you could be in the Schengen Zone for one day, then out for one day for the rest of your life. I don’t know anyone who wants to live this way, so that’s why I’m helping you figure out a way to stay in Europe beyond the Schengen Zone rules.

Can I Stay in Europe More Than 90 Days?

How Can I Get Around the 90 Day Schengen Zone Rule?

The best way to get around this 90 Schengen Area rule is to leave the Schengen area at least every 90 days. Remember that you’re allowed a rolling 90 days, so if you stay for 90 days, you will have to leave for 90 days in order to enter the Schengen Area with a clean state.  This does NOT mean that you MUST leave for 90 days! You can leave the Schengen Zone for 30 days, then be allowed back in for another 30 days, leave for 10, and come back in for 10, etc.

I know it seems very complicated, but it’s not too bad once you grasp the idea. Your best bet is to use a Schengen calculator like  this one.

This is a helpful visual to show you the rolling 90 days that you have before you need to go to one of the non Schengen European countries.

This rule can seem really frustrating until you think about all of the places that are available to you in Europe. Europe is the second smallest continent, yet there are 50 countries in this tiny space. Only half of them are in the Schengen Zone, so there’s no need to worry!

Non Schengen European Countries List

If you’re planning to leave the Schengen Zone, these are the non-Schengen Countries in Europe:

Schengen Map

  1. Albania
  2. Andora
  3. Armenia
  4. Azerbaijan
  5. Belarus
  6. Bosnia & Herzegovina
  7. Bulgaria
  8. Cyprus
  9. England
  10. Georgia
  11. Ireland
  12. Kosovo
  13. Macedonia
  14. Moldova
  15. Monaco
  16. Montenegro
  17. Northern Ireland
  18. Romania
  19. San Marino
  20. Scotland
  21. Serbia
  22. Turkey
  23. Ukraine (obviously, don’t go right now)
  24. Vatican City
  25. Wales

How to Travel Europe Like a Pro: 50 Europe Travel Tips You Need to Know Before You Go

Leaving the Schengen Zone and visiting these 26 non Schengen destinations is a great way to wait out your days until you can re-enter, but many people don’t know much about these incredible places, so I’m outlining each of the non Schengen countries in Europe so that you can decide where you want to go.

It is important to keep in mind that these countries will have their own specific visa requirements, which I have included below.

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Albania is one of the non Schengen EU countries that is a great place to hop into for a few weeks or months.

Why You Should Visit Albania

Albania is a beautiful country located in the Balkan area. While Albania is not often visited by tourists, aside from the cruise city of Saranda and its surroundings, it has everything for an incredible trip. From amazing mountain ranges to some of the last wild rivers of Europe. And from beautiful meadows to incredibly friendly people.

Best things to do in Albania

One of the things you have to do in Albania is to visit the region of the Albanian Alps. Around the villages of Valbona and Theth, you can do incredible hikes. Or you can even do the most famous hike of Albania, from Valbona to Thethi or the other way around. Another thing I recommend you to do is to visit the old Greek city of Butrint and its ruins. Last, you have to visit the Unesco World Heritage site of Gjirokaster. The entire old town is a monument and mostly known for its houses and stone rooftops.

Food to Try in Albania

One of the Albanian foods you have to try is Qifqi. Whether you’re a vegetarian or meat lover, I can guarantee that you will love this. They’re a specialty from the town of Gjirokaster and look like a risotto ball, but doesn’t taste that way. It’s delicious though. Another food you have to try is byrek.

Visa Requirements for Albania

Passport Validity: 3 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Under 1 year

Average Costs in Albania

  • Currency: Albanian lek
  • Accommodation:  Hostels can be found from the price of around 1500 Albanian Lek. Great hotels start from around 3500 Albanian lek.
  • Food:  A byrek is easily bought for the price of 50 lek. A cheap dinner will set you back around 450 – 600 lek.
  • Entertainment:  If you’d like to go to the cinema you can be expecting to pay around 500 Albanian lek. To enter the site of Butrint you can expect to pay 700 Albanian lek.

From Visiting the Dutch Countryside


Why You Should Visit Andorra

Andorra is a beautiful, mountainous land-locked principality high in the Pyrenees. Bordered by Spain and France, it’s a great place to visit throughout the year. In the winter, there are skiing and snow sports but in the summer, it’s all about hiking and cycling. We traveled to  Andorra with our toddler  and loved it. The capital, Andorra la Vella is compact and easily walkable but the real reasons for visiting are the breath-taking mountain views and range of outdoor activities.

Best things to do in Andorra

  • Parc Natural de la Vall de Sorteny for hiking and nature
  • Visit one of the famous ski resorts in winter, like Grandvalira
  • Take in the views at the Mirador Roc Del Quer viewpoint/ skywalk

Food to Try in Andorra

Escudella is a big hearty stew. Made with various meats including pig snout and trotters!

Visa Requirements for Andorra

Passport Validity: 3 months required, 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: 90 days

Average Costs in Andorra

  • Currency: Euro
  • Accommodation:  £100-£150 a night for a family suite
  • Food:  A meal with drinks for 2 adults and 1 child came to around 50 euros

  • Entertainment:  Ski passes at the big resorts are about 50 euros a day for an adult / most hikes and viewpoints are free


Why You Should Visit Armenia

I have been visiting Armenia since 2013 and fall more and more in love with the country each and every time I have a chance to visit. The people are incredibly warm, the food is utterly delicious, and the landscape has so much potential and a rawness to it that is just not found anymore.

Best things to do in Armenia

Khor Virap Monastery, the gorgeous streets and sidewalk cafes of Yerevan, and Areni wine region (home to the oldest winery in the world!)

Food to Try in Armenia

Zhingyalov hats, all fresh produce (especially apricots), basturma, sweet sujukh, dolma, lavash, khorovats, harissa (a porridge), khash.

Visa Requirements for Armenia

Passport Validity: 3 months recommended, but not required
Blank Passport Pages: Not required
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: 180 days or less

Average Costs in Armenia

  • Currency: Armenian Dram
  • Accommodation: Hostel is around $5 a night and a hotel is around $25-30.
  • Food: $2-$5.
  • Entertainment: $2-5


Azerbaijan is one of the most beautiful non-EU non-Schengen countries in Europe.

Why You Should Visit Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan is a wonderful country at the crossroads between Europe and Asia. It’s an off the beaten path destination, but has lots of things to offer from great food, to beautiful nature and charming old towns full of history. Azerbaijans past is fascinating with its Zoroastrian roots, the Soviet era and the more recent developments as an independent state. Even though the country is a mix of different cultural influences it also developed its own unique atmosphere. It’s a country full of surprises that is well worth exploring.

Best things to do in Azerbaijan

Most people start their journey in Azerbaijan in the modern  capital of Baku.  A great city with a beautiful old town, but also a lot of glitter and glamour. Its a great introduction to Azerbaijan, but if you want to see a more authentic side you could visit Sheki. Once part of the Silk road and surrounded by rolling green hills its a lovely town. If you are more into nature Azerbaijan with its high Caucasus mountains won’t dissapoint you. Xinaliq is the highest village in Europe and one of the highlights of Azerbaijan.

Food to Try in Azerbaijan

Piti is a national Azeri dish, but especially famous in Sheki. It’s a filling soup of mutton and vegetables infused with saffron. Another Sheki speciality is Sheki halva. A delicious sweet that is a must try in Azerbaijan.

Visa Requirements for Azerbaijan

Passport Validity: 6 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: Yes, apply for the Visa here
Length of Stay: 30 days

Average Costs in Azerbaijan

  • Currency: Azerbaijani manat
  • Accommodation: Around €10 for a bed in a dormitory at a hostel in Baku. Accomodation gets cheaper outside of Baku.
  • Food: Street food like shawarma is very cheap and costs between 1 or 3 euro. If you sit down in one of the inexpensive cafes expect to pay between 5 and 8 euro’s for a meal with something to drink.
  • Entertainment:  A lot of the attractions are free in Azerzerbaijan and the ones that do charge a fee are not too expensive. For example, a ticket to the Heydar Aliyev cultural center, one of the top things to do in Baku, is only 5 euro’s


Why You Should Visit Belarus

I was so excited when Belarus opened its borders and allowed visa-free travel to citizens of many foreign countries. I spent five days in  Minsk, Belarus , the country’s capital city. I loved spending my days wandering along the wide, Soviet-style boulevards and taking in the spectacular architecture. At night, I joined other solo travelers to explore the city’s growing craft beer scene at trendy riverfront bars. And the best part? I spent less than €25 per day!

Best things to do in Belarus

  • National Library of Belarus (including the panoramic viewing deck hidden at the back of the building)
  • the World’s Most Spectacular KFC restaurant (trust me!)
  • the traditional TsUM department store

Food to Try in Belarus

  • Draniki (potato pancakes)
  • Foraged wild mushrooms
  • Nalistniki (Belarusian crepes).

Visa Requirements for Belarus

Passport Validity: 3 months
Blank Passport Pages: Two pages required for entry stamp
Visa Required: Yes, if planning to stay more than 30 calendar days or if you enter or exit at border crossings other than the Minsk Airport, or if you travel directly to or from the Russian Federation. 
Length of Stay: Under 30 days without a visa

Average Costs in Belarus

  • Currency: Belarusian ruble
  • Accommodation: I stayed in a hostel dorm room for about €6 per night, and also spent one night in a luxury spa hotel for €75
  • Food: Cheap meals in sit-down restaurants are less than BYN 10 (€4).
  • Entertainment: Entrance to museums and other attractions is usually about 6-8 BYN (EUR 3-4).

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Why You Should Visit Bosnia

Bosnia is a melting pot of the Balkans and you can see cultures and religions blend seamlessly in parts of the country. The food is delicious, people are lovely, the scenery is beautiful, and it’s very inexpensive.

Best things to do in Bosnia

Mostar for watching the bridge diving, Sarajevo go to Baščaršija, Sarajevo’s Old Town, and go white water rafting on the Neretva river.

Food to Try in Bosnia

Ajvar- red pepper and eggplant chutney

Visa Requirements for Bosnia

Passport Validity: 3 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: No
Length of Stay: Under 3 months

Average Costs in Bosnia

  • Currency: Bosnia and Herzegovina convertible mark (BAM)
  • Accommodation:  $100/night for a 4* property in Sarajevo
  • Food:  Cheap. A good meal can be had for a family of four for less than $40.
  • Entertainment: Cheap. Everything here is cheap. Full Day trips from $15/person


Why You Should Visit Bulgaria

Bulgaria is a country full of beautiful mountains, incredible monasteries, historic cities, and a gorgeous seaside. While it’s not yet known to the tourist masses, that’s exactly what makes it so special.

Best things to do in Bulgaria

Most people will start their trip in Sofia, the country’s capital, where you can get cultured discovering Roman ruins, historic mosques and churches, and communist history by day. By night, you can explore the city’s vibrant restaurant scene and try some cocktails at some of the city’s hottest nightlife spots.
A natural day trip is to Rila Monastery, the most important Orthodox monastery in the country and one of the most beautiful monasteries in all of the Balkans. Another city you should add to your Bulgaria itinerary is Plovdiv, one of the European Capitals of Culture for 2019. With gorgeous street art, and a UNESCO-listed Old Town, there’s no shortage of great things to do in Plovdiv.

Food to Try in Bulgaria

The iconic shopska salad is a must-eat in Bulgaria, a salad of chopped tomatoes and cucumbers piled with grated salty cheese. Other must-eats include banitsa, a flaky breakfast pastry with a yogurt and cheese filling, and honey-baked sirene (a feta-like cheese).

Visa Requirements for Bulgaria

Passport Validity: 3 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Under 1 year

Average Costs

  • Currency: Bulgarian Lev
  • Accommodation: There are many great places to stay in Sofia on a variety of budgets. On average, a hostel bed will cost about $10 USD per night, whereas a double room in an average hotel will cost around $50-60 USD a night. Luxury hotels usually are around $100-200 USD per night.
  • Food: A banitsa and coffee breakfast can cost as little as $2 USD, and a typical meal out will cost around $5 USD. However, you can spend $20 USD on a multi-course meal with drinks at many of the finest restaurants in the city and it’ll be well worth the splurge.
  • Entertainment: Your average museum costs about $3 USD. A movie is $5 USD.

From Sofia Adventures


Updated 2023: Croatia is now part of the EU and the Schengen area, but it’s still worth a visit. Just not a great fit if you’re trying to find time outside of the Schengen.

Why You Should Visit Croatia

Croatia  is becoming a highly talked about country, for good reason! With it’s amazing coastline along the Adriatic Sea, stunning national parks with overflowing waterfalls and rich history with walled cities, it’s not hard to see why it should be on your list!

Best things to do in Croatia

Croatia is full of breathtaking sites, but the top favorites include Plitvice National Park where you’ll be able to meander on wooden walkways along 16 terraced lakes, with cascading waterfalls that surround you in a limestone canyon. Be sure explore the upper and lower lakes to truly appreciate this natural wonder.

Further South, the town of Split which is known for its beaches and Diocletian’s Palace, which was constructed in the 4th century by a Roman emperor. Be sure to wander the town to appreciate its numerous shops, cafes, bars and white stoned buildings.

At the southernmost end of Croatia, Dubrovnik delights visitors with it’s massive stone walls that encircle the city. If you are a Game of Thrones fan, this is the place to visit! It also features a baroque church, Renaissance Palace and history museum.

If you are traveling with children, don’t miss the amazing Family Hotel Amarin near Rovinj where the children will delight in the clubs, playgrounds, heated indoor pool and outdoor pools. Parents will appreciate the free childcare, full service spa and family amenities.

Food to Try in Croatia

Croatia is full of culinary delights! Be sure to try Pršut & Pag Cheese to start, with black risotto as your main dish and finish with Burek with a sweet filling as a treat. Many Croatian dishes feature seafood with their close proximity to the Adriatic Sea.

Visa Requirements for Croatia

Passport Validity: 3 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: 90 days

Average Costs in Croatia

  • Currency: Croatian kuna
  • Accommodation:  $120 for a three-star hotel (double)
  • Food: A typical meal will cost around $15-20 per person (starter and main dish)

  • Entertainment:  Tours will run $50-$70, but attractions are inexpensive, costing less than $10 per person in entrance fees.

From Pack More Into Life


Why You Should Visit Cyprus

The best thing about Cyprus is the weather with most of the year being warm and sunny. They have short, rainy winters but even then the temperate only goes as low as 17 degrees Celsius. On top of this, there is so much history to be found in Cyprus. The island is the mythical birthplace of Aphrodite and has an interesting mix of ancient Greek and Roman archaeological sites.

Best things to do in Cyprus

  • Visit the Blue Lagoon
  • Visit the Tala Monastery Cats
  • Go horse riding, visit the beach
  • Visit the Zoo
  • Visit the Archaeological Park
  • Visit the tomb of the Kings

Food to Try in Cyprus

  • Cypriot Meze (small plates of savory dips, vegetables, meat, and seafood)
  • Halloumi

Visa Requirements for Cyprus

Passport Validity: 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: Two pages required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Under 90 days

Average Costs in Cyprus

  • Currency: Euro
  • Accommodation: €40 average hotel per person per night
  • Food: €33 average per person per day
  • Entertainment: €10 average per person per day


England is a no-brainer when looking for non-Schengen countries in Europe. London is one of our favorite cities in the world and we spent six months in the UK waiting out our time.

Why You Should Visit England

England is one of the most popular places to go to wait out your 90-day visa limit, especially for Americans. It’s an easy place to travel due to a common language and culture. England is a small country, but packed with history incredible sites, and an awesome food scene. It could take years to see it all, but you’ll only have 6 months!
London Travel Guide

Best things to do in England

  • London – the capital city
  • National Parks – e.g. Lake District and Peak District
  • Castles e.g. Windsor Castle
  • Stratford Upon Avon – the birthplace of Shakespeare
  • Cambridge and Oxford
  • Surrounding beaches

Food to Try in England

  • Fish and chips
  • cup of tea
  • curry
  • pie and mash

115 Awesome Things to do in London

Visa Requirements for England

Passport Validity: Whole duration of stay, 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 6 months

Average Costs

  • Currency: Pound sterling
  • Accommodation:  For a family budget of 2/3/4* hotels, ranging from chain budget hotels like the Premiere Inn £60 per room, per night, to more expensive around £150 on average.
  • Food: Around £10-£25 a dish dependent on food choice and restaurant choice and location
  • Entertainment:  Family ticket on average around £35 dependent on attraction and location

From Double Trouble


Why You Should Visit Georgia

There are so many things I  love about Georgia  it’s hard to narrow it down! Did you know you can go from summer to winter in just a couple hours? Go skiing up in the Caucasus Mountains, travel two hours, and go sun yourself on the subtropical beach Black Sea beaches.

What I really love about the country is the rich Georgian culture. There’s the amazing traditional music and dance, the unique language (both written and spoken), and of course the FOOD! I don’t know anyone who’s visited Georgia and hasn’t come home raving about the food and the amazing dinner party called the supra.

However, what makes Georgia stand out most to me is the people. Georgians absolutely love to invite visitors into their homes and share their culture and a good time. Somehow, wherever you go (completely unplanned), a Georgian family is able to pull off a fabulous dinner party on the spur of the moment!

They urge you in and have you eating, toasting, and singing before you can blink. In no time, visitors sing the praises of Georgian cheese bread (khachapuri) and vow tearfully Georgia is their second home country. I love it.

Best things to do in Georgia

In the capital of Tbilisi there are many sites to see. Be sure to wander Old Town Tbilisi, see Sameba (Trinity) Cathedral, ride the cable cars up to Naricala Fortress, and the funicular up to Mtatsminda Park for fabulous views of the city.

If you are able to get out of the capital, go see the boardwalk and beaches of Batumi. Visit the towers of Svaneti, or go to the caves of the David Gareji Monastery. Every region of the country has something amazingly rich in history to offer.

Food to Try in Georgia

  • All forms of Khatchapuri (cheese bread that varies by region)
  • Khinkali (dumplings filled with meat or other fillings)
  • Mtsvadi (awesome Georgian BBQ)

Visa Requirements for Georgia

Passport Validity: 3 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Under 1 year

Average Costs

  • Currency: Georgian Lari
  • Accommodation:  Varies by region and style. I’ve paid about $10 USD a night for a room near the beach or you can find up to hundreds of dollars for the high-end Radisson Blue or Marriott.
  • Food:  Again it varies. You can get really good cheese bread (khachapuri) for under a dollar or dine very well at a touristy restaurant for more U.S. prices. Generally speaking, the cost of food is significantly less expensive than the U.S. equivalent. Much of this is due to the current exchange rates. Right now the Georgian Lari is .37 of a dollar (be sure to check the current exchange rate).
  • Entertainment: Tbilisi State Opera performance is currently 10-25 GEL (Georgian lari). Batumi dolphinarium visit: 15 GEL. Tbilisi Open Air Museum: Child 1 GEL, Adult 3-7 GEL.

The Channel Islands

One of our favorite places in Europe to spend outside of the Schengen area is the Channel Islands. Guernsey Island, in particular, is one of our favorite places in the world!

Why You Should Visit the Channel Islands

While Guernsey and Jersey are not technically their own countries (they’re part of the UK, like Northern Ireland), it’s a great place to go to wait out the Schengen time due to its close proximity to France. You can take a quick 45 minute ferry ride from St-Malo, France and be out of the Schengen area. Guernsey is a gorgeous island packed with history and Jersey is lovely and full of great beaches.

Best Things to do in the Channel Islands

The Channel Islands are the only British territory that was occupied by the Nazis during WWI. The islands are packed with history! Be sure to see the Occupation Museum in Guernsey and the Underground Nazi tunnels on both islands.

Food to Try in the Channel Islands

  • Guernsey Gache: a fruit-filled bread served with butter
  • Seafood
  • A fusion of British and French foods

Visa Requirements for the Channel Islands

Passport Validity: Whole duration of stay, 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 6 months

Average Costs in the Channel Islands

  • Currency: Pound Sterling
  • Accommodation: $100-200/night for a hotel or Airbnb
  • Food: $10-$20/meal
  • Entertainment: Many things in the Channel Islands are free, like beaches and historical buildings. Entrance to museums are around $5.

The Republic of Ireland

Why You Should Visit Ireland

We love the peaceful scenery and warm hospitality of  Ireland , especially along the west coast! Though it shares a common language with America, that’s about where the similarities end (indeed, in some parts of Ireland the traditional Irish language is still spoken as well). It’s a lively country that offers something for every type of traveler, whether they prefer history, culture or outdoor adventure.
The Best Places to Visit in Ireland

Best things to do in Ireland

You can’t visit Ireland without spending at least one evening down at the local pub having a craic and listening to traditional music, even if you don’t drink alcohol. Ireland offers many castles and historic sites to explore, many dating back over a thousand years. Some great options are Bunratty (a beautiful castle near Galway) and Rock of Cashel (an old ruined castle in the south). Of course, many choose to visit Blarney Castle to kiss the fabled stone! Ireland is a wonderful country for exploring the outdoors, especially along the Wild Atlantic Way. For an easy day of scenic beauty, go out in Slea Head Drive to discover the Dingle Peninsula; even if you aren’t a dedicated hiker, there are some short walks that will suit all ages and abilities! More adventurous? Try the adrenaline-pumping bike ride through the Gap of Dunloe in Killarney National Park!

Food to Try in Ireland

Fish and chips! Try yours with a splash of malt vinegar for a more interesting flavor.

Visa Requirements for Ireland

Passport Validity: Duration of stay
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: 90 Days

Average Costs in Ireland

  • Currency: Euro
  • Accommodation: The cost of accommodation varies substantially based on location, season and size. But you’re still in Western Europe and spending Euros so budget accordingly!
  • Food:  A simple dinner in a pub will run €6-10 depending on what you order
  • Entertainment: So many of the best things to do in Ireland are free! Others are affordable compared with the major cities of continental Europe.


Why You Should Visit Kosovo

Tiny, landlocked and troubled nation of Kosovo might not have the greatest of international reputations… but when we traveled to  Kosovo with a toddler , we fell in love. Kosovo is a gorgeous, friendly and charismatic country. Our toddler was welcomed with open arms everywhere we went. The food is delicious, there are beautiful towns to visit and Pristina, the capital city, is vibrant and cosmopolitan.

Best things to do in Kosovo

  • Visiting the UN Peacekeeper-guarded Visoki Decani Monastery
  • A guided tour around the captivating marble caves at Gadime
  • Coffee and cake in the picturesque town of Prizren

Food to Try in Kosovo

  • Filja (pancakes layered with yoghurt)
  • Burek (yummy stuffed pastries)
  • delicious kebabs

Visa Requirements for Kosovo

Passport Validity: 3 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 90 days

Average Costs in Kosovo

  • Currency: Euro
  • Accommodation: 45 euros a night for a 2-bed apartment in Pristina
  • Food: A meal with drinks is around 6-7 euros per adult
  • Entertainment: 2 euros each for a 30 mins tour of the Gadime Caves


Why You Should Visit Macedonia

Macedonia  is among the most overlooked and underrated countries in Europe that recently got famous due to the issues with its name (so now it’s actually North Macedonia).
There are so many reasons to travel there: exciting cities, beautiful nature, very affordable prices, friendly locals and delicious food – just to name a few.
Since the country is rather compact, traveling around isn’t difficult, and you can actually see a lot even if you are short on time. I’ve been visiting Macedonia frequently, and it’s always such a pleasant country to explore.

Best things to do in Macedonia

  • Lake Ohrid
  • Skopje
  • Bitola

Food to Try in Macedonia

  • shopska salad,
  • ajvar
  • tavche gravche

Visa Requirements for Macedonia

Passport Validity: 6 months beyond your stay recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 90 days

Average Costs in Macedonia

  • Currency: Macedonian denar
  • Accommodation: Around $40 USD/night
  • Food: Around $15 USD/meal
  • Entertainment: Around $1o USD

From Kami and the Rest of the World


Why You Should Visit Monaco

Monaco in the French Riviera is sounded by France on three sides while the other side borders the Mediterranean Sea. Many of the James Bond movies features the famous Monte Carlo casino located here. While   Monaco   is famous for its Glitz and Glam, you can still find some fun things to do with kids when they are not too distracted with spotting the fancy cars.

Best things to do in Monaco

  • Monte Carlo Casino
  • Prince Rainier’s Private Collection of Shiny Cars
  • Harbor

Food to Try in Monaco

  • Salad Nicoise, a French composed salad with tuna, green beans, hard-boiled eggs, tomatoes, onion, capers, and potatoes

Visa Requirements for Monaco

Passport Validity: 3 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Under 1 year

Average Costs in Monaco

  • Currency: Euro
  • Accommodation: About $300. We stayed in Nice and did a day trip to Monaco
  • Food: $30 per person
  • Entertainment:  Most attractions are free. 8 Euros for visiting Prince Rainier’s Private Collection of Cars

From Outside Suburbia


Why You Should Visit Moldova

Moldova struggled after its initial independence from the Soviet Union but recent efforts promoting tourism have begun to make a difference. Chisinau, the capital city, is becoming a popular destination away from the usual tourist trail and tourism infrastructure is growing and growing. Getting out of the city is the real reason to  go to Moldova , however. The farming villages are colorful and quaint, very picturesque, and small family-run Agriturismo style hotel restaurants are bringing the farm to table concept to the countryside.

Best things to do in Moldova

In Chisinau, be sure to visit the military museum for a look at a great collection of old Soviet military equipment and memorabilia. Then try to catch a performance in the State Circus building, an unforgettable example of Soviet architecture. Of course, no trip to Moldova would be complete without a visit to the Orheiul Vechi region and the 600-year-old monastery carved directly into the limestone cliffs.

Food to Try in Moldova

On the must-try foods list for Moldova are simple peasant dishes that are tasty and filling. Tocan, stewed meat baked in an outside, wood-fired oven is delicious as is the local yogurt and cheese. For a snack, grab a hand-held meat or cheese pie (also cooked in the same ovens). But the main staple in Moldova is mamaliga, a type of polenta that goes perfectly as a dumpling with the meat stew.

Visa Requirements for Moldova

Passport Validity: 6 months
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 90 days

Average Costs in Moldova

  • Currency: Moldovan lieu
  • Accommodation: A night in a five-star hotel can be had for a little over $100. The best deals, however, are for apartments in the city center that can be found for about $50 per night.
  • Food: Prices in Moldova are relatively cheap. A good meal can be had for less than $20.
  • Entertainment: As with restaurants and lodging, entertainment and attractions costs are also low.

From Reflections Enroute


Why You Should Visit Montenegro

Montenegro is a land of azure seas, high mountains, rich culture, and big rivers. Much like its neighbor to the north, Croatia, Montenegro is a karst landscape filled with outdoor opportunities. We spent a month in Montenegro and barely scratched the surface of this little country.

Best things to do in Montenegro

  • Kayaking in Montenegro  in the Bay of Kotor and the Blue Cave
  • Hiking in Durmitor National Park
  • Climbing the Fortress in Kotor
  • White water rafting on the Tara River

Food to Try in Montenegro

  • Punjene Paprike – stuffed peppers. Yummy peppers are filled with meat, vegetables, cheese, rice, or sauce and baked.

Visa Requirements for Montenegro

Passport Validity: Valid at time of entry
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 90 days

Average Costs in Montenegro

  • Currency: Euro
  • Accommodation: We paid $1500/month for a 2-bedroom vacation rental on the Adriatic Sea.
  • Food: In the less touristy mountains meals could be as little as $6/entree, in Tivat or Kotor a high-end restaurant could be $30/entree.
  • Entertainment: We primarily did things on our own and for free, but a 1/2 day kayak tour runs around $90, and a 3-hour speedboat tour costs around $30.

From Traveling Mel

Northern Ireland

Why You Should Visit Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland has some of the most iconic sites on the Emerald Isle! Beautiful sea views, dramatic cliffs, and rolling green hills make it an ideal destination to wait out your time outside the Schengen. Not only is it gorgeous, but it’s people are also lovely.

Best things to do in Northern Ireland

There are so many things to do in Northern Ireland but don’t miss Carrick-a-rede bridge, Dark Hedges, and Giant’s Causeway.

Food to Try in Northern Ireland

  • Brown bread
  • Irish Stew
  • Shepherd’s Pie

Visa Requirements for Northern Ireland

Passport Validity: Whole duration of stay, 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 6 months

Average Costs in Northern Ireland

  • Currency: Pound Sterling
  • Accommodation: $50-200/night depending on how you choose to stay. There are plenty of Airbnb all around Northern Ireland for really affordable.
  • Food: $10-$15/restaurant meal,
  • Entertainment: Giant’s Causeway and Dark Hedges are Free. Carrick-a-rede bridge is £9


Why You Should Visit Romania

Romania is a country of rich history, untouched nature, bustling city centres, and a desire to grow and adapt. We enjoyed Romania because the people were proud, industrious, and humble – qualities rarely found these days in developed nations. The country is full of culture, adventures, and world-renowned sights for those willing to dive in to check them out.

Best things to do in Romania

  • The Palace of Parliament in Bucharest
  • Bran Castle – the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”
  • The medieval Old Town of Sighisoara
  • The many medieval fortifications in Brasov

Food to Try in Romania

Romanian is known for its hearty dishes – many of which are shared by neighboring Eastern European countries. You can try a bowl of goulash or perhaps cabbage rolls with polenta and potatoes.

Visa Requirements for Romania

Passport Validity: Three months beyond departure date required, 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 90 days

Average Costs in Romania

  • Currency: Romanian Leu
  • Accommodation: In Romania, accommodations are typically quite a bit cheaper than in other European countries. This is, of course, dependent on the city or town you are in – but generally quality guesthouses and hotels can be found for cheap. A typical, beautiful guesthouse in the heart Old Town of Brasov can be an affordable 30 Euro/night.
  • Food: As with many other associated travel costs in Romania, food is generally quite cheap. A hearty meal in Sighisoara with drinks and dessert was 16 Euro for two people, while a very large lunch (plus drinks and tip) at a popular restaurant in Bucharest cost only 10 Euro per person.
  • Entertainment: Romania is a country known for many things – namely the magical castles tucked away in the famed Transylvanian mountains. Getting to these locations is easy via car, bus, or train, and entrance fees to Bran Castle cost around 8.50 Euro. In the cities, there are plenty of  things to do in Brasov  such as visiting the Black Church, while cities like the capital Bucharest allow tours of the gargantuan Palace of Parliament for around 7 Euro. With a neat old town, stunning architecture, and a bustling nightlife, Bucharest is quickly becoming a destination for families and revelers alike.

From Penguin and Pia


Scotland is one of our favorite non-Schengen countries in Europe! With places like Edinburgh, Inverness, and the Isle of Skye, it’s the perfect place to wait out your time.

Why You Should Visit Scotland

Scotland is a gorgeous country that largely remains as rugged and wild as the Highlanders for which it is known. From the ancient history of its castles and the rich cultural traditions of its people to larger-than-life landscapes, its cities and countrysides are equally packed with incredible stories. But for a true taste of Scotland at its purest, you MUST take a trip to the islands (the Hebrides, Orkneys, and/or Shetlands).

Best things to do in Scotland

  • Walk the Royal Mile in Edinburgh,
  • Soak in the natural beauty of Loch Lomond National Park,
  • Explore the countless attractions on the  Isle of Skye

Food to Try in Scotland

  • Haggis
  • Black Pudding
  • Scottish Salmon

Visa Requirements for Scotland

Passport Validity: Whole duration of stay, 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 6 months

Average Costs in Scotland

  • Currency: Pound Sterling
  • Accommodation: $100-$200 a night
  • Food: $10-$30/meal
  • Entertainment:  Varies

From Green Global Travel


Why You Should Visit Serbia

Serbia is a beautiful European country with friendly locals who speak English reliably, delicious food that won’t break the bank, and colorful cities!
Whether you’re looking to experience Serbia’s stunning nature in the southwestern corner, its beautiful art nouveau cities (such as Novi Sad and Subotica), learn about history at Orthodox monasteries or indulge in Belgrade’s thriving nightlife, Serbia has something for everyone.
Although many people only pass through Serbia, consider taking at least a few days to sit out at Belgrade’s many cafes sipping on a coffee (or tasting rajika!)

Best things to do in Serbia

  • Explore the colorful and beautiful Northern cities of Subotica and Novi Sad
  • Spend a wild night out experiencing Belgrade’s nightlife on a boat!
  • Explore Belgrade’s many cool districts and trendy cafes
  • Enjoy the views from Belgrade Fortress
  • Take in history and culture at local farms and monasteries in the Fruska Gora region
  • Sip on rajika
  • Go hiking in Tara National Park

Food to Try in Serbia

Pljeskavica: A beef burger that is made with delicious onions! It looks a lot like a hamburger, but it is way tastier! Serbian burek: This not-so-healthy breakfast is a great start to a day and a great motivation to burn some calories! Ajvar is a delicious eggplant and red pepper that is often served with homemade bread and sausages.

Visa Requirements for Serbia

Passport Validity: 6 months beyond date of entry
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 90 days

Average Costs in Serbia

  • Currency: Serbian dinar
  • Accommodation: Expect to pay 30-40 euros for hotels and 20 euros per night for hostels per person!
  • Food: 10 euros for a nice meal out. You can easily spend less if you eat casual meals to-go! 1 euro for coffee.
  • Entertainment: In Belgrade, one of the best activities to add to your Belgrade itinerary is seeing the Belgrade Fortress, which is the oldest part of Belgrade. It is free to visit. The main attractions worth playing for include the newly opened National Museum in Belgrade (600 RSD – 5 euros) and the Nikola Tesla Museum in Belgrade (4- euros)

From Wanderlustingk


Why You Should Visit Turkey

Turkey really stole my heart from my first minutes in Istanbul. The country has an amazingly complex history spanning millennia, a rich and distinctive culture that marries East and West, and its people are friendly, engaging, and sometimes challenging. And don’t even get me started on the food—Turkish cuisine is one of my favorites in the entire world!

Best things to do in Turkey

Where to start?! In Istanbul alone you have Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, Basilica Cistern, the Grand Bazaar, the gorgeous turquoise waters of the Golden Horn, and so much more! Get out to the ruins of Ephesus, the otherworldly stone spires of Cappadocia, the bleached-white pools of Pammukale, and hop on a gulet to explore the vivid blue coastline in the south.

Food to Try in Turkey

The list here is long! There are so many delicious traditional Turkish foods, from the grilled meats and doner kebab to sweets such as baklava, kunefe, and Turkish yogurt with honey. Try menemen, their take on scrambled eggs, or lahmacun, a pizza-like flatbread. And wash everything down with the famous Turkish coffee or omnipresent black tea.

Visa Requirements for Turkey

Passport Validity: 6 months beyond date of entry
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp and one page for exit stamp
Visa Required: Yes, apply here
Length of Stay: Less 90 days

Average Costs in Turkey

  • Currency: Turkish Lira
  • Accommodation: It is completely up to you. You can get a nice Airbnb for $50-100, or for not much more get a pretty amazing apartment with a view.
  • Food: Restaurant and street food in Turkey is very affordable for most foreigners, as the exchange rate is typically in our favor. For instance, snacks, baklava, and street food typically costs less than $1 USD, while most nice meals will cost much less than back home.
  • Entertainment: Many sites are 20-25 lira (that was only about $5-6 USD when I was there). Hagia Sophia is a bit more, around 40 lira. Mosques do not generally cost to enter, nor does the Grand Bazaar or Spice Market in Istanbul. A site like Ephesus will be about 60 lira, while Pammukale is around 35 lira.

From One Girl Whole World


Why You Should Visit Ukraine

Ukraine has some of the most beautiful churches I have seen. They are colorful and topped with gold domes.   Kyiv, the capital city,  is full of fun and interesting restaurants. It is also very child-friendly with indoor playgrounds in every mall and many restaurants have playrooms. On top of all this, it is one of the most affordable countries to visit in Europe.

Best things to do in Ukraine

  • Andriyivskyy Descent
  • St. Sophia’s Cathedral
  • St. Michael’s Monastery
  • Motherland Statue
  • Maidan Square

Food to Try in Ukraine

  • Borscht
  • Varenyky
  • Chicken Kiev

Visa Requirements for Ukraine

Passport Validity: Must be valid at time of entry and exit
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: No
Length of Stay: Less 90 days

Average Costs in Ukraine

  • Currency: Ukrainian hryvnia
  • Accommodation: Average prices around $50 per night
  • Food: Meals under $10. Our family of 4 could often eat out for less than $25 at a restaurant.
  • Entertainment:  Opera tickets from $2, entry to churches free or less than $1, and children’s indoor entertainment centers are around $4

From Abroad Wife


Why You Should Visit Wales

Wales is a stunning country with hills and mountains, beautiful beaches, woodland, castles (many many castles!) and historic towns and villages. If you like the outdoors Wales is the perfect destination.

Best things to do in Wales

There is  so much to do in Wales,  from adventurous pursuits to exploring its historic castles and pretty towns and villages. A superb castle is Caernarfon, in North Wales, a huge fortress right in the center of this historic town. The beaches on the Gower peninsula, in South Wales, are stunning and can be combined with a walk along the coastal path. Adventurous pursuits abound – hike the highest mountain in Wales and England, Mt Snowdon; try coasteering in the waters of Pembrokeshire; or trampoline in a cave and fly through the air on a zip-line at ZipWorld.

Food to Try in Wales

  • Welsh Cakes are a must try when in Wales, a delicious teatime treat.

Visa Requirements for Wales

Passport Validity: Whole duration of stay, 6 months recommended
Blank Passport Pages: One page required for entry stamp
Visa Required: None
Length of Stay: Less than 6 months

Average Costs in Wales

  • Currency: Pound Sterling
  • Accommodation: Suitable accommodation is available for all budgets, from camping and youth hostels to cottage rentals and hotels.
  • Food: Food costs are very much the same throughout the UK. Again there are options to suit all budgets, from self-catering and takeaways to fine dining establishments.
  • Entertainment: Attractions vary in their cost. Some activities, like hiking, are absolutely free. A family ticket to Caernarfon Castle costs £20. Cave trampolining at ZipWorld costs from £20 for an hour.

From Go Live Young

I hope this list of non-Schengen countries will be helpful to you. There’s a whole lot of Europe to explore and you don’t need to be confined to limit yourself to 90 days. If you need any help planning your trip to Europe, please get in touch on Instagram, Facebook, or Email.

2 thoughts on “The Best Non-Schengen Countries in Europe for Nomads in 2024

  1. Lynzi Henderson says:

    Thanks for the article, very informative. I was wondering, as far as Monaco, Vatican City and San Marino goes, it seems they do not have airports to fly out of. If you escape there I would assume you would have to stay there the full 90 days to then go back to any EU Schenagan country, correct?

    • Wanderlust Crew says:

      To be honest, I wouldn’t recommend staying in any of those. There are better options, and you’d go nuts to stay in any of these for 90 days haha! And you only need to be OUT of the Schengen for as long as you want to go back in. For example, if you’ve used up your 90 days, you can leave for 10, then come back for 10. It’s a “rolling 90.” I explain it all here: Honestly, It’s complicated to understand, but I hope that helps! Have an awesome time.

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