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Where to Go in April: The Best Places to Travel

by Brook Wilkinson | March 26, 2019

Where to go in April? That’s easy: Flowers in full bloom, festive celebrations, and mild temperatures make this early spring month a lovely time to visit many parts of the globe.

(Don’t miss the rest of our “Where to Go” series on the best destinations for every month of the year. If you’re wondering when’s the best time to book your destination to get the best value for your dollar, see our “Where to Book Now” series.)

Washington, D.C.

National Cherry Blossom Festival, Washington, D.C.

National Cherry Blossom Festival, Washington, D.C. Photo: National Cherry Blossom Festival

Washington, D.C., is great in the spring before Memorial Day, when you can avoid the high season while taking advantage of the balmy weather. Several fun events take place in April this year, including the National Cherry Blossom Festival’s Petalpalooza, the Smithsonian Craft Show, the D.C. Comedy Festival, and Filmfest D.C.

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Hawaii

Makena, Maui beach Hawaii

Makena, Maui. Photo: Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

April means an optimal combination of great weather and relatively low prices in the islands. (Just make sure to avoid the crush of visitors and higher rates that Spring Break brings.)

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Peru

Lupins bloom above the ancient Inca ruins of Choquequirao in the Andes, Peru

Lupins bloom above the ancient Inca ruins of Choquequirao in the Andes, Peru. Photo: Adriana Von Hagen

April sees the best mix of weather both inland and on Peru’s coast; it’s sunny and warm in Lima, and dry and temperate in the Andes. Since the rainy season has just ended, the air is clear, and the fields are green and lush, dotted with the yellow, pink, and mauve hues of quinoa, amaranth, lupines, and potatoes ready to harvest.

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Paris

paris vacation rental with view of eiffel tower France

There’s nothing more romantic than a view of the Eiffel Tower. Photo: Paris Perfect

Discover the first hints of spring in Paris while strolling through the Tuileries or pausing a moment under the blossoming trees by Notre Dame Cathedral; in April, the weather is usually mild and the city is bedecked in blossoms. You’ll beat the tourist crowds before they arrive later in the spring and catch some excellent art exhibits, too: Leonardo Da Vinci and the Italian Renaissance at Les Beaux-Arts and Ellsworth Kelly at the Pompidou, to name a few.

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Seville and Andalusia

Seville, Spain

Seville, Spain. Photo courtesy Casa 1800.

Come April, the temperatures throughout Andalusia are pleasant, the aroma of orange blossoms is in the air, the light is beautiful, and there are fiestas (and bullfights) all over the region, including all the events during Easter Week, the April Fair in Seville, the fiesta of the Cruces de Mayo in Granada, and the Festival of the Patios in Cordoba.

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Netherlands

tulips and windmill at Keukenhof Gardens in the Netherlands

Spring is tulip time in the Netherlands. Photo: Keukenhof Gardens

April is bright and pleasant, and it’s prime time for Tulipmania, when the Keukenhof (one of the world’s largest flower gardens) is full of blooms. King’s Day, on April 19, is the biggest street party of the year in Amsterdam; it’s very busy, but a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the Dutch joie de vivre (you can also enjoy the parades and festivities in a more rural setting). There’s also the Spring Beer Festival in the Posthoornkerk, a beautiful old basilica, on April 22. By traveling in April, you’ll also miss the public holidays in May that bring out large crowds.

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Mediterranean Cruises

Crystal Serenity

Sailing through Venice, Italy aboard the Crystal Serenity. Photo courtesy Crystal Cruises.

April is the perfect month to enjoy the brilliant blue skies in the Mediterranean, when the sunny days start to outnumber the cold and cloudy ones of winter. Cruise ships have just repositioned to the region, so you can explore iconic ports such as Barcelona, Monte Carlo, Rome, and Venice without the crowds and heat of summertime. And fares are lower, since this is considered the off-season.

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Istanbul

Istanbul, Turkey. Photo courtesy Crystal Cruises.

Istanbul, Turkey. Photo courtesy Crystal Cruises.

During the annual tulip festival in April, the city is awash in millions (literally) of colorful blooms. The weather is temperate, perfect for visiting the outdoor ancient sites that can be scorching in summer—and the tourist hordes have not yet arrived. Since it’s shoulder season, there are deals to be had at hotels.

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Austria, Hungary, and the Czech Republic

Prague, Czech Republic. Photo: Joseph Pisani

Prague, Czech Republic. Photo: Joseph Pisani

April means mild weather, springtime flowers, and no bus-tour crowds in Eastern Europe. This year Easter is April 21 and there are charming holiday markets and festivals in Vienna leading up to the holiday. In Budapest, the Spring Fair runs all month long with folk music, dancing, and concerts. In Prague, popular Easter Markets are running through April 28. Crowded summertime destinations, such as Lake Balaton in Hungary and the Wachau Valley in Austria, are relatively tranquil. In the Czech Republic, all the countryside castles are just reopening from their winter dormancy.

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Crete

The island of Spinalonga, Crete, Greece. Photo: Blue Palace Resort and Spa

The island of Spinalonga, Crete, Greece. Photo: Blue Palace Resort and Spa

Renowned for its rich local culture, Crete is a wonderful place to visit in April when Greek Orthodox Easter falls during that month, as it does this year (on the 28th). Experience renowned Cretan hospitality throughout the festive celebrations, which are distinctive to Greece’s most southern (and thus warmest) island. There are also beautiful wildflowers in April, fewer crowds, and lower hotel rates than you’ll find later in spring.

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Papua New Guinea

mean with lakatoi boats on beach of Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea. Photo: Pixabay/freesally

In April the rainy season is just ending, so prices are better than in the high months of May, June, and July.

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Luang Prabang, Laos

Monks in Luang Prabang, Laos photo credit Flickr/jayarc

Monks in Luang Prabang, Laos. Photo: Flickr/jayarc

Songkran, the Lao New Year, is celebrated in mid-April with a whole week of parades, street markets, and concerts. Tradition holds that revelers douse one another with water in order to wash away the past year’s sins; unlike in Thailand, where you might well be ambushed outside your hotel in the morning, in Laos the locals usually ask before splashing you.

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Other Good Options This Month

Click on any of the destinations below to find out why April is a good time to go.

Asia Cruises

Bolivia

Brazil: Rio de Janeiro

California: Yosemite National Park

China: big cities and small villages

China: Yunnan Province

Colombia: Bogota

Costa Rica: Pacific and Central regions

Croatia

Cuba

Ecuador: Galapagos family travel

England: Castles, Manor Houses, and Gardens

European Canal Barge Cruises: deals and tulips

Germany: Bavaria

Greece: Athens

India: trekking and tiger viewing

Indonesia: Bali without crowds

Ireland: Killarney and County Kerry

Israel

Israel: Jerusalem

Italy: Amalfi Coast

Italy: Florence

Italy: Lake Como villas

Italy: Sicily

Mexico: Puerto Vallarta

Mexico City

Morocco

Myanmar

Namibia

Nepal

New Zealand

New Zealand: Bay of Islands

New Zealand: Queenstown hiking and cycling

Patagonia

Peru: Machu Picchu

Portugal

River Rafting in the American West

Romania (second half of April)

Russia: Moscow

Russia: St. Petersburg

Scotland: wildflowers and deals

Seychelles

South Africa: Cape Town and Winelands

Spain: Madrid

St. Barts

Utah’s national parks

Vietnam: north and Central regions

Zambia

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Be a smarter traveler: Use Wendy’s WOW List to plan your next trip. You can also follow her on Facebook and Twitter @wendyperrin, and sign up for her weekly newsletter to stay in the know.

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