Top 5 summer vacation ideas in Europe and beyond

Summer vacations

If you are looking for summer vacation ideas, then read on. We’re highlighting some of the most captivating places to go in the summer to enjoy luscious beaches, captivating culture and brilliant cuisine. The perfect recipe for a vacation to remember. Whether you’re jetting off this summer or making plans for later, explore our Back to Travel deals for amazing savings!

Spain: a classic summer vacation destination

Summer vacation ideas: Spain

Spain has long been one of the most popular places to go in the summer. You can’t beat the beaches of the Costa del Sol or the paradise Balearic Islands. During the summer months, Spain experiences an increase in tourism, so you can expect to share the beach with other vacation-makers unless you choose an off the beaten track destination. Perhaps consider the surfers’ paradise of Cadiz or gorgeous Granada, known for its Moorish history and architecture. 

You can almost guarantee long, sunny days if you travel to Spain during the summer, so it’s great for those looking to top up their tan and relax a little. If you’d rather go sightseeing, Spain has plenty of historic sights and natural wonders to explore. These include the volcanic Parque Natural de Timanfaya in Lanzarote and the Las Médulas Roman gold mines in León. If you are interested in European summer travel, Spain should be at the top of your list.

Greece: best summer vacation destination for culture

Greece summer vacation

Greece is one of the most popular European summer travel destinations thanks to its idyllic islands and amazing historical sites. The legacy of Ancient Greek culture has made Greece a popular destination for sightseeing. Nevertheless, it’s also perfect for a laid-back beach getaway. Some of the most popular Greek islands to visit are Corfu, Crete, Santorini and Mykonos, but there are thousands of lesser-known islands to explore. Greece enjoys long hot summers, with minimal rainfall, high temperatures and plenty of uninterrupted sunshine. 

As well as perfect summer weather, Greece is a paradise for foodies, with its simple yet delicious national cuisine. Expect lots of fresh produce, rich feta cheese and high-quality olive oil. Even the most modest-looking taverna is sure to blow you away with the flavours and freshness typical of Greek cuisine. History buffs are catered for in other ways, with the Acropolis of Athens, the Sanctuary of Delphi and the ruined Temple of Knossos topping the lists of must-see historical sights. With many destinations to choose from, great weather and warm hospitality, it is no wonder that Greece represents one of the best summer vacation ideas for families and couples.

Bali: best far-flung escape

summer vacation ideas: Bali

If you want to travel further afield, let Bali tempt you with its tropical beaches, lush rainforests and fascinating temples. Situated in Indonesia, Bali is one of the Lesser Sunda Islands and has long been a highly coveted travel destination. May, June and July are the best months to visit Bali as this is the driest time of year. You can enjoy sun-drenched beaches and turquoise seas, perfect for snorkelling, swimming and sunbathing. In fact, Bali is one of the best places on earth to go snorkelling, as it is part of the Coral Triangle, an area with a rich biodiversity of fish and turtle species. 

Ubud is the cultural centre of Bali and is a good place to start your trip. Here you can experience authentic Balinese culture, visit temples, see the famous rice paddies and go shopping at the local artisan market. On the other hand, many travel to Bali to enjoy its coastal resorts such as Nusa Dua, Jimbaran, Kuta and Seminyak. There are also a number of high-end resorts nestled within the rainforested interior of the country, promising absolute tranquillity and connection to nature. 

Costa Rica: a tropical summer vacation destination

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a good choice for a summer vacation, although the weather is great throughout the year. The Caribbean coast, with its golden beaches and laid-back atmosphere, has the least rainfall. Costa Rica is an amazing place to travel, with soaring volcanoes and the lush cloud forests of Monteverde. It’s also known as a pioneer of eco-tourism. There is a huge variety of things to do in Costa Rica. Maybe you’ll take an exciting nocturnal nature hike, in search of sloths and spider monkeys, or perhaps you’d prefer to enjoy a tropical cocktail or two upon the pristine beaches of Tamarindo. Whatever your travel style, Costa Rica is one of the best summer vacation ideas.

Although summer in Costa Rica is also the ‘rainy season’ it typically only rains for a couple of hours in the late afternoon. This is known as ‘green season’ for good reason. At this time of year, the verdant rainforests and countryside spring to life. Exotic flowers blossom and the local wildlife is increasingly active. You can really experience the best of Costa Rica at this time of year so it’s worthwhile braving a few hours of rain.

Portugal: favorite for foodies

best summer vacation ideas: Portugal

There is much to love about Portugal. An unrivalled national cuisine, a fascinating history and a number of vibrant, cosmopolitan cities make Portugal one of the best summer vacation destinations. The summer months bring warm temperatures and sunshine, perfect for enjoying the beaches of the popular Algarve region or the surf of the Atlantic Coast. Some of the most popular places to visit in the summer include Cascais, Albufeira and Nazare.

Portugal boasts golden beaches and family-friendly resort towns, but there is much more than this to discover if you travel to this European summer travel destination. Lisbon, the cosmopolitan capital, has heaps of historic sights to explore. Just take the magical architecture of Belem Tower and the atmospheric streets of Alfama, for example. Other fantastic places to visit in Portugal include the fascinating town of Sintra, known for its fairytale architecture and trendy Porto. When it comes to the national cuisine, Portugal boasts one of the best. With high-quality seafood, salt cod and the famous custard tarts, Portugal is a favourite for foodies. Portugal is an all-around great European travel destination where you can combine cultural pursuits and beach lounging. 

Need more inspiration for your summer holiday? Explore our latest Back to Travel deals and enjoy extra savings on your long-awaited getaway!

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