In Europe, 76 destinations off the beaten path
Looking beyond Rome, Paris or London? Consider Europe's lesser-known destinations, such as Monschau, Germany, a town so quaint you can hardly believe it isn't a theme park or San Marino, one of Europe's oldest and smallest countries (drive through it slowly).
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Luxembourg( Susan Spano / Los Angeles Times )
When I set out to visit the smallest countries in Europe, I put Luxembourg at the top of the list. Among the Continent's mini-states, it comes to mind maybe as quickly as Fredonia, from the 1933 Marx Brothers movie, "Duck Soup."
Then I opened my atlas and found that Luxembourg comes in sixth, behind Andorra, on a list of Continental Europe's dinkiest nations. It is almost as big as Rhode Island, with an area of 998 square miles and nearly half a million people.
Everything's relative, of course. You can drive across the grand duchy in 30 minutes. It looks so much like neighboring Germany, France and Belgium that you'd miss it altogether if you didn't know it was there.
-- Susan Spano
Read more: Luxembourg: modern, idyllic and battle-tested
Pictured: Basilica of St. Willibrord.