2. Visit the Elves' Retreat of Hallstatt, Austria

Looking like a background to J.R.R. Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings" novels, where hobbits and elves frolic among waterfalls and forests, Hallstatt in Austria dreams of swashbuckling adventures and faster Internet connections. Boasting just 1,000 inhabitants, the little town sits on the banks of a fast-flowing river, overshadowed by snow-capped peaks and dramatic cloud cover.