The Best Early Summer Destinations
It’s now almost half way through the year – where has that time gone? However, now is the perfect time to jet off to some new destinations to kick start the pre-build up to summer. With an abundance of cities to choose from it may seem a little overwhelming and that’s why I have cherry picked the best of the bunch for you.
In my top 8 there is a little of everything for everyone, whether you are after a romantic getaway to Tuscany, immersing yourself in the Game of Thrones world in Dubrovnik or starting your tan in Brisbane then these places are for you. Or if you are after something a little different then check out the beaches of Fiji to the crazy world of Phuket, amongst many wanderlust worthy destinations.
1. Dubrovnik, Croatia
Croatia has become increasingly more well-known due to the action-packed world of Game of Thrones as this is where the majority of the series is being filmed. In-particular Dubrovnik stands out the most and will appeal to any history lovers as this medieval city is located on the Dalmatian coast and holds a wealth of culture and antiquity.
Fancy yourself as more of a nature lover? Then have no fear as the city is close to some fantastic trails, rocky cliffs and beaches where you can spend many days exploring or taking a dip in the Adriatic Sea. The surrounding area hosts plenty of activities including wine tasting, mountain biking in the local hills and plenty of nooks and crannies to keep you busy.
2. Brisbane, Australia
In the land, down under, you will find this quirky city where there is free public Wi-Fi everywhere, plenty of urban attractions and a huge public pool which is free to use. Technically, our summer is actually the middle of winter for Brisbane, but since it’s on the East coast it isn’t as affected unlike Sydney and Melbourne making it a great place visit for some winter sun.
Generally, temperatures are mild and the weather is dry, making it an ideal place to do some sightseeing which includes visiting the world’s largest Koala sanctuary or jumping on a boat to do some whale watching. Did I mention the East coast is primarily known for its beaches as well? Head just outside of the city and there are plenty of long, pristine white sand beaches that you can relax and chill out on.
3. Tokoriki, Fiji
Although Fiji is actually a country, there are way too many Fijian Islands (333 to be exact) to pick from and it is well worth doing some island hopping while you are there to get a well-rounded experience. Early summer, meaning June and the beginning of July, are one of the best months to visit as the weather is perfect for a relaxing vacation where you can get some sun, splash around in the ocean and take some ‘you time’.
Mostly it is just resorts on the islands which makes it ideal for honeymoons or romantic getaways, but there are hostel and homestay options for those of you travelling. I personally really enjoyed staying at the Sheraton on the island of Tokoriki where it is blissfully secluded with private beaches, gorgeous clear blue waters and plenty of sunshine. The best part? It is literally opposite the famous Tom Hank’s movie ‘Cast Away’ island which was filmed there and you can get day trips to try and find Wilson.
4. Tuscany, Italy
This has to be hands down of the most romantic cities in the world in one of the most beautiful countries filled with wine, great food, art and a copious amount of history. Tuscany during early summer has the perfect warm temperatures to kick start your adventures, with minimal tourist crowds and slightly lower prices.
A trip here would definitely not be complete without experiencing some of Michelangelo’s art including the famous statue of ‘David’ or climbing to the top of the Duomo for some incredible and awe-inspiring views of the surrounding city. Explore the surrounding hillsides with plenty of vineyards to pick from and enjoy some delicious fresh meats, cheese, olives and of course wine.
5. Queenstown, New Zealand
Queenstown, is undoubtedly one of my favourite cities in New Zealand and for good reasons too. While it is a great place to visit all year round with the summer making it an exceptionally beautiful place, our early summer month June is perfect as it is winter and the fresh powdered snow creates an image of pure perfection around the surrounding mountain tops.
Hit the slopes for some incredible skiing or snowboarding, jump on a luge for some fast-downhill action, or head to Ben Nevis which is the 2nd highest bungee jump in the southern hemisphere and dive head first into a never-ending canyon. Not much of an adrenalin junkie? The not to worry, there are plenty of beautiful trails around the city, or take in the magnificent lake from one of the many boat tours. Be sure to head to Fergburger which is arguably one of the best burgers in the world (in my opinion anyway).
6. Phuket, Thailand
If you haven’t been to Thailand yet, then this definitely needs to be added to your next ‘must visit’ destination. Phuket is one of those cities that definitely needs to be experienced and is also a great base for you to visit the surrounding islands. June is Thailand’s low season, which means lower hotel rates and a lot less tourists which makes it perfect to explore.
With so much to keep you entertained here you will find it extremely hard to be bored. Take in some Thai boxing, head to the many beautiful beaches, go snorkelling with the vibrant marine life, island hop to Railay beach to experience the gorgeous lime cliffs and roam around the night markets taking in the delicious smells and senses. You certainly won’t be disappointed.
7. New York City, USA
The Big Apple. The City that never sleeps. The big easy. New York is known by many different names and lives up to pretty much all of them. Arguably, you can visit this city any time of year as there is always something going on to there no matter what the weather. However, during early summer, the weather is primed for some lovely sun, fresh temperatures and pleasant sightseeing conditions.
Obviously, if you have never been before you will definitely need to check out the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, Grand Central train station, Central Park and Times Square to name a few. Although if you fancy something a bit more of the beaten track then head to the bustling China town or Little Italy and get lost amongst its many alleyways and streets where you will be sure to find some hidden treats.
8. Anchorage, Alaska
While visiting Alaska, you need to stop by Anchorage in early summer. Even bettter June 21st to be exact for a one off yearly event where the residents of the city celebrate the longest day of the year – also known as summer solstice. This is done with plenty of delicious local cuisines, lively music and entertainment, partying under this unique midnight sunshine.
It is quite honestly nothing like you have ever seen before and should definitely be on your bucket list to see and experience in your life time. The weather is on the cooler side but still warm enough to be enjoyable, not to mention a solid 18 hours of daylight allowing you to explore the local countryside and beautiful scenery.
Be sure to check out my website for more information and travel advice as well as my Twitter @TakeLeapTravel and Instagram @taketheleaptravel.
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