Move over monotones, it seems colourful cities are becoming a popular tourist attraction, with these towns adopting a ‘more is more’ approach when it comes to colour. They say it takes sunshine and rain to make a rainbow, and by the looks of things, these cities have had an abundance of each. From a city painted blue to promote the Smurfs’ Movie, to a town painted pink to welcome royal guests, we take a look at some of the world’s most colourful cities.
Burano is an island on the Venetian Lagoon in Northern Italy, just a short day trip from Venice. Whilst the town is quickly gaining popularity due to its canals framed by vibrant, colourful fisherman’s houses, Burano is still one of Italy’s best kept secrets.
*Burano Image via Living Nomads.
NOTTING HILL, LONDON
Notting Hill is one of London’s most popular tourist attractions, full of beautiful pastel houses, especially surrounding the infamous Portobello Road. The surprising thing about Notting Hill is that if you wander a few streets away from Portobello Road, you can stumble upon streets lined with nothing but crisp white Victorian style houses.
*Notting Hill image via Welcome Home London.
According to legend, the upper classes of Rajasthan painted their houses blue in order to distinguish themselves from the lower classes. Over the years however, the segregation has blurred and the practice today has since been adopted by everyone, earning them the title of ‘Blue City of India’.
*Jodhpur image via Trip Savy.
LA BOCA, BUENOS AIRES
Colour, colour, everywhere! This tiny neighbourhood in Buenos Aires, Argentina is a patchwork of vibrant hues built from scraps from the local shipyard and painted in every colour of the rainbow.
*La Boca image via Lonely Planet.
CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA
Legend has it, Charleston in South Carolina’s famous ‘Rainbow Row’ came to be when the colours were used to help drunken sailors know which homes to bunk in. Boasting the longest line of Georgian row houses in the US, Charleston in South Carolina is the perfect rainbow of pastel architecture.
*Charleston image via Padstyle.
This enchanting yellow city in Mexico is like sunshine everywhere you look. Rows and rows of yellow coloured houses and building populate the city, that has since become a tourist attraction for those wanting a more authentic Mexican experience.
*Izamal image via Furniture Dehko.
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA
Most famous for its ‘Postcard Row’ of colourful houses dubbed ‘The Painted Ladies’, San Francisco in California is dotted with vibrant colourful Victorian and Edwardian houses that are painted in three or more colours to enhance their architectural details.
*San Francisco image via Paint Your Trip.
CINQUE TERRE, ITALY
Perhaps one of the more famous rainbow city, Italy’s Cinque Terre is best known for its colourful houses packed on the cliffs, overlooking the sea. A must see for any visitors to Italy, the Cinque Terre is a beautiful, multi coloured rainbow.
*Cinque Terre image via Travel & Leisure.
The city centre of Willemstad, Curacao, is World Heritage Listed. Located in the Caribbean, Willemstad is known for its vibrant culture and even more vibrant colonial architecture influenced by Dutchstyles.
*Willemstad image via Ixigo.
Nassau is the beautiful, yet sometimes dangerous mainland of the Bahamas. You could easily be mistaken for thinking the beautiful looking picturesque town is as happy as a rainbow, yet exceptionally high crime rates render it sometimes quite dangerous for tourists.
*Nassau image via Cloud Front.
India is also home to a ‘Pink City’ or more officially, Jaipur. Steeped in history, Jaipur got its name back in 1876 when the Prince of Wales and Queen Victoria visited India. Since pink denotes the colour of hospitality, Maharaja Ram Singh of Jaipur painted the whole city pink to welcome the guests. This tradition has been followed strictly, with residents now being required by law to maintain the pink colour, resulting in a rose coloured city.
*Jaipur image via My Journey Through India.
Menton is a town in the French Riviera in South East France known for its beautiful beaches and gardens. Situated on the Franco-Italian border, Menton is nicknamed Pearle de la France or ‘Pearl of France’ and you can easily see why.
*Menton image via Hand Luggage Only.
A colourful journey throughout the world wouldn’t be complete without a trip to Havana in Cuba. The city is a burst of colour with its vibrant buildings and colourful cars dominating the streets. In Old Havana you’ll feel as though you’re stuck in the 1950’s, with the World Heritage listed town full of vintage cars and cobblestone streets, feeling as though time has completely stopped.
*Havana image via Popsugar.
Providing the perfect contrast to its sometimes dreary backdrop, Lonyearbyen in Norway is a picturesque juxtaposition for the eyes. Colourful houses sit like the perfect rainbow in front of snowy mountains, a treat for all the senses.
*Longyearbyen image via Ytimg.
Famed as the ‘Red City’ due to its rows and rows of houses with red coloured roofs, Marrakesh in Morocco built this vibrant infrastructure from a mix of red mud and water, the materials used to construct ‘tabia’ bricks.
*Marrakech image via Get Your Guide.
ST. JOHN’S NEWFOUNDLAND, CANADA
The city of St.John’s on the island of Newfoundland is without a doubt Canada’s most colourful city, providing a stark contrast to its otherwise cold climate. The city is bustling with culture and the low rise buildings have been painted in a vibrant array of colours mean St. John’s in Newfoundland is anything but dull.
*St. John’s Newfoundland image via Blogspot.
Literally looking a lot like the Smurfs’ village, Júzcar, Spain, turned into a blue city when Hollywood producers from Sony pictures requested to paint the town blue. Intended to be a temporary project to promote the Smurfs’ movie, it ended up attracting so many tourists that the locals agreed to keep the town that way.
*Júzar image via Via Je Jet.