Good things come in small packages.
Oftentimes, travelers are on a mission to cross off popular destinations on their checklist. It’s not an easy feat to see every attraction or restaurant–big and small–which is why the opportunity to explore under-the-radar attractions can get lost in the excitement. Whether it’s a tiny ramen restaurant with a maximum capacity of two or a micro cocktail bar where you’ll have to get cozy, here are the world’s smallest attractions that you should carve out time in your itinerary to see.
Central Hotel and Café
WHERE: Copenhagen, Denmark
What better way to squeeze in “me time” than staying at a hotel with only one room? Copenhagen’s Central Hotel, situated in the city’s hip district of Vesterbro, may quite possibly be the world’s smallest hotel. It includes all the amenities you’ll need: stocked mini-bar, flat-screen television, bathroom, free Wi-Fi and two bicycles—since it’s the primary mode of transportation. From what it lacks in size and additional rooms, the hotel makes up for in charm. And for just 2500 DKK (around 375 USD), the one-room establishment can be yours for the night.
INSIDER TIPGrab a coffee, sandwich or pastry from the equally cozy Central Café below the hotel. Sit inside the tiny café or a table on the sidewalk.
WHERE: Lisbon, Portugal
It’s easy to stroll past this former tobacco shop turned used bookstore in Lisbon, but the closet-sized Livraria Simão is worth taking a peek. Tucked away in Escadinhas de São Cristóvão, the bookstore holds nearly 4,000 books in less than four square meters. The impressive collection belongs to the owner, Simão Carneiro, who might step outside if you wanted to peruse the books that are lined from floor to ceiling. His collection consists of Portuguese books primarily, but you can find some Spanish, English, Italian and Chinese titles as well.
Mills End Park
WHERE: Portland, Oregon, United States
In the center of a busy Portland intersection lies Mills End Park—oops, you just walked by it! Clocking in at barely one-meter wide in the median of Naito Parkway, Mills End Park goes against everything you think you know represents a park: open spaces, surrounded by trees, and an overall serene environment. —You won’t find that here but according to the park founder and columnist Dick Fagan, it’s home to a leprechaun called Patrick O’Toole. However, Fagan claimed he was the only person to have the scoop on the leprechauns, so don’t wait around for a sighting. Mills End Park was officially recognized as the world’s smallest city park by the Guinness Book of World Records in 1971.
WHERE: Milan, Italy
Secret speakeasies are all the rage, but have you ordered a drink at the smallest bar in the world from a masked bartender? At Milan’s bespoke BackDoor 43, the four-square meter space has enough room for three stools and a bartender in a Guy Fawkes mask behind the partition. sip on exquisite cocktails —The menu is constantly switched up so it’s a unique experience for every patron, but one thing is certain: you won’t be disappointed by the exquisite cocktails.
INSIDER TIPBook weeks in advance if you’d like to experience it for yourself.
WHERE: Vatican City, Italy
Officially recognized as the world’s smallest state and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Vatican City is a must-visit for fans of stunning places. Roughly 100 acres large, visitors will find much to love about this nation-state landlocked in the heart of Rome, including some of Europe’s most striking architecture, artwork, and libraries.
Children’s Art Gallery
WHERE: Carmel, Indiana, United States
Some people think children’s artwork should only be displayed on a kitchen cabinet or office cubicle wall, but not the Children’s Art Gallery—the smallest of its kind—in Carmel, Indiana. Since its inauguration in 1998, children’s artwork has been the focus in this gallery as well as permanently showcasing a selection of pieces from children of all ages. Located at the heart of the Arts and Design District, the Children’s Art Gallery also curates an annual high school art exhibit for students hoping to further their artistic education.
Cross Island Chapel
WHERE: Oneida, New York, United States
Sitting atop a floating jetty, the 30 square foot Cross Island Chapel—in all its white, wooden glory—is something of an anomaly in a world of ostentatious places of worship. It only gets weirder when you realize that the chapel is essentially floating in the middle of a pond. Built in 1989, this non-denominational church is the smallest in the world and has enough seating for two. You can also reserve the church for special occasions and meditation upon request.
WHERE: Somerville, Massachusetts, United States
If you find museums overwhelming, then The Mµseum in Somerville, Massachusetts might be ideal for you. The Mµseum which is also known as the “Tiny Museum”, is sixteen inches wide and houses just one artwork (often by a local artist) at a time. Curated by Judith Klausner, the goal is to make art accessible for all.
Note: The Greek letter µ is pronounced mew which also means micro.
The Cabin of Peter the Great
WHERE: St. Petersburg, Russia
Considered to be the world’s smallest palace, The Cabin of Peter the Great—also known as Peter’s Cottage—was the first to be built in St. Petersburg. While once the residence of Tsar Peter 1703 and 1708, this 60 square meter space has since been converted into a museum. Even for the casual traveler, this cabin is a strange and fascinating place. The wooden walls are painted to appear like it was made of brick and the architecture fuses traditional Russian with Dutch influence.
Solo Per Due
WHERE: Rome, Italy
Standing in line for hours to gain entry in a crowded restaurant is so overrated. At least, that seems to be the message at Solo Per Due, a tiny Roman restaurant which is quite literally just for two people, seated at one table. Housed in a 19th-century Roman villa, this tiny restaurant makes use of local, seasonal ingredients. If you want to dine at this exclusive restaurant, making a reservation is essential.
WHERE: Ceredigion, Wales
Why go to the cinema when the cinema can come to you? That’s the motivation behind Sol Cinema, the world’s smallest solar-powered cinema. Based out of Ceredigion and regularly moves around South Wales, this mobile movie theater has enough room for eight viewers at a time, which is both bizarre yet practical. The 1960s trailer will prove to be pleasantly nostalgic and the immersive, vintage usherette service is the icing on the cake.
Candy in the Cove
WHERE: Bowen Island, Canada
When 50 Cent rapped about candy shops and lollipops, we’re pretty sure he wasn’t picturing anywhere quite like Candy in the Cove, a sweets shop situated on a small Canadian island. Regardless, Candy in the Cove—the self-proclaimed smallest candy store in the world—is worthy of a visit, given that it’s a purveyor of both domestic and imported sugary treats, including many vintage offerings.
INSIDER TIPIf you want to push the boat out, order one of Candy in the Cove’s custom party piñatas or collector candy sets.
The Tiniest Gallery
WHERE: Ontario, Canada
Public attention was never the aim for The Tiniest Gallery in Ontario, Canada, but word-of-mouth has given the presumed smallest art gallery on earth a somewhat larger-than-life reputation. Established by a local Kingston resident—who admits to having not a lick of artistic talent themselves—The Tiniest Gallery displays frequently-rotated works by (predominantly) local artists. Recent works include felt pieces, bird prints, and an intriguing piece called “Untitled Koala.”