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Late spring and the early days of summer can be ideal for a travel adventure, typically falling just before the masses start embarking on their escapes. You’re likely to enjoy idyllic weather for outdoor activities with opportunities to immerse yourself in nature and perhaps enjoy some city delights too. These destinations, in particular, are some of the best places to travel in June, whether you want to stick closer to home or head out on a trip thousands of miles away.
Newfoundland is renowned for its spectacular scenery, wildlife, and friendly locals. In June, Canada’s easternmost province starts to warm up after a long cold winter. It’s the best time to come if you hope to see icebergs and whales at the same time, with humpbacks arriving in large numbers to chase the capelin they feed on. The icebergs will be starting to melt, but oftentimes they’re still around until mid-June or even later. Puffins are here now too – head to the town of Elliston, where you can get very close to the colorful auks which occupy a section of land at the end of a rocky outcrop called “Puffin Island.”
June is one of the best months to visit Borneo for rare and inspiring wildlife experiences. Conditions are mostly hot and dry with only occasional rain this time of year, making it a perfect time for jungle trekking and wildlife safaris, including spotting the famous orangutans, as they’ll be more likely to congregate around water and food sources. The trees start bearing fruit this month that the animals like to feast on. Plus, you can take advantage of the island’s sun-soaked beaches too.
Great Barrier Reef, Australia
Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is a spectacular marine destination where you can grab your snorkel or scuba gear and look forward to an underwater paradise with corals, angelfish, clownfish, butterfly fish, sea turtles, whale sharks, and a host of other sea creatures. Port Douglas on the east coast is an ideal place to base yourself for the experience, home to the famous Four Mile Beach, and June is the perfect time to be here. It’s winter in Australia, which sees little rainfall for optimal diving and snorkeling conditions.
June is a wonderful time to be in Crete, one of the most beautiful islands in Greece. The biggest tourist crowds of the year haven’t arrived just yet, nor have the scorching temperatures of July and August. Breezes help to moderate temperatures on the coast, and it’s a bit cooler in the mountains should you get too warm. Or, head to the beautiful beaches like Balos, one of the most photographed on the island. Afterward, there are many traditional tavernas serving mouthwatering eats that can be enjoyed outdoors on a balmy evening alongside a glass of Greek wine.
Azores Islands, Portugal
In June, the lush volcanic islands in the middle of the Atlantic known as the Azores become even more idyllic, with the wildflowers bursting into bloom. The hydrangeas create an especially colorful landscape with hues of purple, pink, and blue, including bushes of hydrangea that highlight the already stunning Mount Pico volcano on Pico Island. The island of Flores will be full of them too. Plus, it’s a good time for watching both dolphins and whales off the island’s shores. There usually isn’t much rainfall, with an average temperature of around 70 degrees, making it just right for popular activities like hiking and mountain biking too.
San Sebastian, Spain
June is one of the best months to visit San Sebastian in Spain’s Basque Country. The weather will be pleasant with little rain now yet it’s not too hot, perfect for enjoying one of the best city beaches in all of Europe, Playa de la Concha. Enjoy strolls along the bayfront promenade too, and of course, explore the famous food scene, which is what draws many here from across the globe. There is a long list of Michelin-starred restaurants, along with fabulous pintxo bars, food markets, and gourmet food shops. The best time to eat here is in late spring or early summer as the fish are spawning which means they’ll be extra tender.
Rwanda is famous for its mountain gorillas and is one of the few places on the planet where you can track them. The dry season begins in June, which is the best time to see the animals, as hiking conditions will be optimal with trails free of mud, and the risk of malaria is at its lowest. It will also be possible to watch the annual Kwita Izina Ceremony. Held in June, it’s when all baby gorillas born over the previous twelve months are named.
Croatia has become one of the world’s most popular travel destinations, but by visiting in June, you can miss the biggest crowds and even find tranquility in some places. The island of Rab along the northern coast is known as the “island of love,” with Rab Town a highlight for history and culture enthusiasts. Even during the peak of the summer season when it’s filled with tourists, nearly deserted beaches can be found just a stone’s throw away. Or, discover the medieval hilltop towns on the Istrian Peninsula, an area that’s often referred to as Tuscan-like but without the masses.
The warm, dry conditions in June are ideal for spotting wildlife in Zambia’s 3500 square-mile South Luangwa National Park, plus the mosquito numbers will have dwindled significantly with the landscaped dried out. Walking safaris are popular, bringing the opportunity to watch for African elephants, hyenas, baboons, and leopards. Daytime temperatures will be mild, typically in the upper 60s. Plus, you can see another big attraction, Victoria Falls. Not only will plenty of water be thundering over the precipice, but you can even bungee jump over the Zambezi.
June brings mostly sunny weather with fewer rainy days to Seattle, often with idyllic temperatures in the low 70s, ideal for paddling the many waterways, hiking miles of trails right in the city, and exploring the many parks and gardens that will be in full bloom. Many events can be enjoyed this month too, with Seattle’s fun and quirky side on full display, that includes the Fremont Solstice Parade with its naked bike ride. Plus, orcas can be spotted plying the waters of Puget Sound, and if you want to taste the most mouthwatering salmon, you may be able to pick up Copper River salmon at the famous Pike Place Market, which is available only from May through mid-June.
Boothbay Harbor, Maine
Maine is a spectacular place to enjoy awe-inspiring scenery that includes everything from the rugged coastline and gorgeous beaches to soaring mountains and sparkling lakes. The town of Boothbay Harbor is one of the best destinations in New England for summer. It offers miles of trails for discovering the natural beauty, and day trips are possible to Monhegan Island now too, a unique isle with incredible cliffs and outstanding bird watching. The whale-watching scene will be in full swing too, bringing the chance to spot everything from humpback, fin, and minke whales to the rare and endangered North Atlantic right whale.
Iceland’s weather is near perfect in June as the month sees the least rainfall and the most hours of sunlight. On the summer solstice, the sun doesn’t go down until after midnight and rises before 3 a.m. though there is never total darkness with the sun simply lingering on the horizon, a phenomenon known as the Midnight Sun. That means more time to explore the country’s stunning natural wonders, including its many waterfalls, hiking across lava fields, or simply wandering the colorful streets of Reykjavik.
The Black Hills, South Dakota
The Black Hills is a lush mountain range known for its dense pine forests, numerous lakes, unique rock formations, caves open for exploring, and abundant wildlife. June is one of the best times to be here as it will be warm but not scorching hot like July and August when the humidity and heat can be nearly overwhelming. You won’t have to worry about the big crowds and countless motorcycles that the famous Sturgis Rally attracts in August either. Instead, enjoy tranquil hikes, swimming, paddling, and visiting the many attractions, from Mount Rushmore and Custer State Park to Deadwood.
Assateague and Chincoteague Islands are coastal islands in Virginia and Maryland that are renowned for their wild horses and unspoiled beaches. The fishing village of Chincoteague is where most people stay to watch the horses that roam freely throughout the area as it offers shops, eateries, and hotels, whereas no development is permitted on Assateague. Beyond the ponies, the wide, sandy beaches are lovely, and if you head to the Maryland side of the island through Assateague, you can rent kayaks to paddle through the marshes while watching for the myriad of bird species. You might want to take a tour to see the wild horses, with sightseeing cruises a great way to spot them from the water while also watching for dolphins and other wildlife.
Orkney Islands, Scotland
As midsummer approaches and the days become longer, the Orkney Islands are an especially enchanting place to be. Enjoy walks along the cliffs and on the beaches, some of which might make you think you’re in the Caribbean, at least until you dip your toes in. The Ring of Brodgar is absolutely magical on the Summer Solstice when the sun doesn’t until 10:30 p.m. and rises at 3 a.m. There are many other ancient sites to discover here, and you’ll have plenty of daylight to do it, from the Standing Stones of Stennes to Skara Brae, a prehistoric site that dates back to 3100 BC. Plus, the St Magnus International Festival, an annual, week-long arts festival, takes place over several days in mid-June.