Let's say you had a friend from Denmark coming to visit the United States, first time ever, who asked you where she ought to go. Would you say New York? Chicago? Washington, DC? Or would you offer some deeper cuts: say, maybe check out Denver if you want to feel a younger sort of American flavor? Nashville, for someone entranced with bluegrass and barbecue? Hell, a visitor could live the best version of America during 72 hours in Oakland... if they aren’t lured by a more famous red bridge across the bay.
Visiting Europe presents the same quandary, reversed: 750 million people, dozens of countries, more history and topography than anyone could cover in a lifetime, let alone a week. Americans, possessing scant few dollars and even fewer vacation days, default to the old, safe hits. London. Paris. Rome. Dublin. Barcelona. Maybe Athens, Berlin, Copenhagen, Madrid, Oktoberfest. And then back home to Missouri, satisfied that the Facebook crowd will be able to pick out, yes, the Eiffel Tower, wow, the Colosseum, and know that you had a proper Euro trip.