Obidos, Portugal (Photo: Thinkstock/iStockphoto)Obidos, Portugal (Photo: Thinkstock/iStockphoto)
There’s no better place to vacation under the radar than in a secret European village. On winding cobblestoned streets you can easily lose yourself in centuries-old charm and fall into step with slower-paced locals. Here are 10 enchanting villages most U.S. travelers haven’t yet stumbled upon.

Obidos, Portugal

Taken from the Moors by Portugal’s first king in 1148, Obidos is a medieval fortress and walled village that you enter, as in olden times, through the enormous and intricately painted southern gate of the Church of Santa Maria. Honeysuckle flowers spill from window boxes on whitewashed houses along narrow, winding streets. Restaurants, shops, and coffee bars inhabit spaces whose architectural features span centuries.

If You Go: You can sleep in the Obidos Castle, the first pousada to be adapted and restored from a historical monument. Book a guided walking tour or rent a bicycle at the Tourist Office. Highlights include the Parish Church of Santa Maria, the pretty Chapel of Sao Martinho, and, outside the town walls, the Church of the Senhor da Pedra.

Getting There: Obidos is 55 miles north of Lisbon. The drive on the A8 Motorway takes 40 to 50 minutes. You can arrive by bus, train, or airport taxi.