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Where to Go in June: The Best Places to Travel

by Brook Wilkinson | June 1, 2018

In much of the northern hemisphere, June is an excellent time weather-wise to squeeze in a trip before school vacations start, the summer crowds surge, and the heat descends. In some places, it’s also a great month for hiking and spotting elusive beasts of the wild. Here are our Trusted Travel Experts’ recommendations for the best places to travel in June.

(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.)

Alaska

Harbor seal

Harbor seal hauled out on ice, which has calved from the South Sawyer Glacier in the Tracy Arm-Ford’s Terror Wilderness area, Southeast Alaska, USA. Photo: Lindblad Expeditions/Michael S. Nolan

The first two weeks of June in Southeast Alaska—the region that nearly all expedition cruises focus on, also known as the Inside Passage—typically offer drier days and better wildlife spotting on the beaches at low tide. This is also a prime time to spot transient orcas, migrating humpback whales, and hauled-out harbor seals. Winds coming off the snow-covered mountain peaks make the air crisp, and the forests showcase an abundance of colorful and diverse wildflowers.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Small-Ship Alaska Cruises, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Newfoundland, Canada

The coastline of Twillingate, New World Islands, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

The coastline of Twillingate, New World Islands, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. Photo credit: Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism

June is typically an optimal month for iceberg watching—a popular pastime here. On a warm day, you can watch these majestic mountains of ice flow along the province’s northern and eastern coasts.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Newfoundland and Labrador, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

London

Queen Elizabeth II at the Garter Ceremony

Queen Elizabeth II at the Garter Ceremony with Lord Chamberlain in 1976, Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England, UK. Photo: Visit Britain

Spring and autumn may be the loveliest times of year in London, but the busiest month in the British royal calendar is June. The season actually starts in late May with the Chelsea Flower Show. Then, in mid-June, there’s the Trooping of the Colour, a big parade on horseback held in honor of the queen’s birthday. After that, the ceremony at Windsor Castle for the Order of the Garter, which is the biggest spectacle of all, with the knights in blue velvet cloaks and hats decorated with heron and ostrich feathers. The whole royal family turns out, and everyone is in their morning coats, medals, and top hats. It’s really a sight! The following day: the Royal Ascot races. All of these events are open to the public, but they tend to be mobbed. Our Trusted Travel Expert can arrange special entry to all four (and other royal meetings), including an after-hours visit to the Chelsea Flower Show and access to the castle grounds for the Order of the Garter ceremony.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to London, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Paris

Ile Saint-Louis in the river seine paris

In Paris, locals take advantage of the warm weather to stroll and picnic on the waterfront of Ile Saint-Louis. Photo: Andreas Eberhart, Queen of Clubs

In June, the days are longest, the temperature is most pleasant, and the cherry blossoms are in bloom. And it’s when Parisians spend many an evening on the docks of the Ile Saint Louis with a musical instrument, a bottle of wine, and some playing cards. Plus, there are events galore, from the French Open to wonderful art exhibits and several music and film festivals.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Paris with Perks, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Provence, France

Saint-Remy-de-Provence, France

Mas Fleuri, Saint-Remy-de-Provence, France. Photo courtesy Just France.

June is sublime: Spring is in full bloom, the produce is at its peak, and the warm, sunny days (save for the occasional rain and mistral wind) and extra-long evenings mean you can usually enjoy all three meals outdoors. Many villages hold festivals, with costumed parades and traditional food and activities, at the end of the month.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to France Villa Vacations, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Italy’s Lakes Region

Amalfi Coast, Italy

Amalfi Coast, Italy. Photo: IC Bellagio

In June you are guaranteed sunny days and warm evenings, with not too much humidity. Local festivals are common, and the many Milanese families who decamp to their lake homes for the month of August are around only on the weekends. The region’s gardens are also in bloom—the most beautiful is at Villa Balbianello—and spring is the ideal time to hike the ten-mile Greenway that meanders along Lake Como’s shore, passing by wooded slopes and charming villages.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Italy’s Lakes Region, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

San Sebastián, Spain

Beach and colorful houses of San Sebastian, Spain

San Sebastian, Spain, is ideal in June. Photo: Shutterstock

June is a great time in San Sebastián: The weather has cleared but it’s not yet warm enough for beach-goers, so the crowds are manageable. Enjoy the top pintxo bars while they are still filled with locals—most of whom will be replaced by tourists come July and August. And a lot of produce comes into season now, making the many Michelin-starred menus even more delectable than usual.

Use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

The Algarve, Portugal

Anantara Vilamoura Algarve Resort, the Algarve, Portugal

View from the bar deck at Anantara Vilamoura Algarve Resort, the Algarve, Portugal. Photo: Billie Cohen

The weather is beautiful in June, when mild temperatures make it ideal for hiking and biking along the coast, and the Atlantic is just warn enough to take a dip. The European crowds will not arrive for another month, so you can still find a great spot on the beach (without staking it out early in the morning) and nab reservations at the top restaurants.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to the Algarve, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Mykonos, Greece

Elia Beach, Mykonos

Elia Beach, Mykonos. Photo: Myconian Utopia Resort

In the second half of June (and into the first half of July), you get the best of both shoulder and peak seasons: It’s lively but not crowded, warm but not scorching, and hotel rates aren’t sky-high. You’ll also elude the worst of the meltemi—the afternoon wind that can sandblast you off the beach in July and August—but be aware that Mykonos is always windy; bring a light sweater for evenings.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Mykonos, and use Wendy’s trip request form to  be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Cappadocia, Turkey

Balloons over Cappadocia. Photograph courtesy of Earl Starkey

Balloons over Cappadocia. Photograph courtesy of Earl Starkey

In June the wildflowers are in bloom and everything is still green. The light is ideal for photography, the days are long, and the nights are lovely. It is also a perfect time for balloon flights, and there is a mountain biking festival too.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Cappadocia, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Baltic Cruises

Saint Isaac Cathedral across Moyka river, St Petersburg, Russia

Saint Isaac Cathedral across Moyka river, St Petersburg, Russia. Photo: Shutterstock

The Baltic is ideal during St. Petersburg’s “White Nights,” when dusk meets dawn and the sun does not dip deep enough below the horizon to bring on full darkness (a phenomenon lasting from late May through July, and peaking in mid-June). During this period, there is a playful feeling in the city as inhabitants and visitors enjoy being outside late into the night, and numerous ballet, opera, and music events take place.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to European Luxury Cruises, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

European Canal Barge Cruises

a canal barge cruise in france

Canal barge cruises move slowly, allowing for great up-close views of the French countryside. Photo: Barge Lady Cruises

In June, the weather is best (not too hot, not too cool), and the crowds haven’t yet arrived, making this a perfect month to get to know a small slice of the Continent intimately and thoroughly.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to European Canal Barge Cruises, and use Wendy’s trip request form to her through our site to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Yakushima, Japan

forest river in Yakushima Japan

Japan’s sub-tropical island of Yakushima is ideal for intrepid travelers. Photo: Sankara Hotel & Spa Yakushima

This sub-tropical island, located in the waters just south of Kyushu, is ideal for intrepid travelers: Its mountains and vast forest of ancient cedar trees are crisscrossed by a network of hiking trails, from easy walks to challenging ascents. June signals the end of the rainy season, so you’ll find stunning waterfalls along the trails; it’s also when endangered loggerhead sea turtles return to Yakushima’s beaches to nest.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Off-the-Beaten-Path Japan, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Bali

Uma by Como, Ubud, Bali

Uma by Como, Ubud, Bali. Photo Courtesy Como Resorts

June is the calm before—and after—the tourist storms that hit this island during the Christmas/New Year period and in July, August, and early September. It also has the most reliably pleasant weather (daytime temps in the 80s and gentle breezes to keep the sun from feeling too hot) and decent prices (high-season hotel rates don’t kick in until July).

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Bali, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Laos

Journeys Within Tour Company

Plain of Jars, Laos. Photo: Journeys Within

While you will likely have some rain in June, it brings a bit of relief from the summer heat. And because June is a slower season for visitors, there are better hotel and touring deals available. Plus, there is no more beautiful time in Laos, with the juxtaposition of bright green mountains against an electric blue sky and billowing white clouds.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Laos, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

India’s Himalaya Mountains: Trekking and Tigers

royal bengal tiger in the ranthambore tiger reserve in rajasthan india

A royal Bengal tiger stretches in the Ranthambore Tiger Reserve in Rajasthan, India. Photo: Sanjay Saxena

June is an excellent time for hikers, as many Himalayan trekking routes are open, and the mountains (up to about 14,000 feet, at least) are covered with rhododendron blooms and other wildflowers. And while it’s very hot in the central plains, it’s also the best time for visiting that region’s wildlife parks—especially the tiger reserves.

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to the Secrets of India, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Bhutan

aerial view of Bhutan village

Bhutan. Photo: Pixabay/BoyKat

In June the higher mountainsides are dressed in the pinks, whites, reds, purples, and oranges of rhododendron flowers. Iris, orchids, primula, and other flowers are blooming, spring plantings are poking their leaves up out of fields, and migratory birds are heading north across the mountains. Many travelers have gone home, so roads are not teeming with buses and other tourist vehicles (which is very important in a country with only one east-west road).

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Bhutan, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

Rwanda and Uganda: Gorilla Trekking

Gorilla in Rwanda

The best time for gorilla tracking in Rwanda is June through September. Photo by James Friedman.

Gorilla sightings are equally good all year long (though never guaranteed). However, the best time for gorilla tracking is June, when it’s cool and there is less precipitation (but remember, this is still the rain forest, and storms can hit any day).

Learn more in our Insider’s Guide to Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda and Uganda, and use Wendy’s trip request form to be marked as a VIP and get the best possible trip.

 

Other Good Options This Month

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

American West: river rafting

Australia: Great Barrier Reef

Botwsana

Brazil: Pantanal wetlands

Brazil: Rio de Janeiro

Brazil: southern Amazon

Brazil: Trancoso’s off season

Cambodia: green season

Canada: British Colombia

China: Yunnan Province

Costa Rica: green season

Cuba: beaches

Ecuador: family trips to the Galapagos

Egypt: value trips

Fiji

French Polynesia

Germany: Bavaria

Greece: Athens

Italy: Florence’s Festa di San Giovanni

Mexico’s Riviera Maya

Mongolia

Montana and Wyoming: Yellowstone National Park

Namibia

Nepal

New Zealand: winter activities in Queenstown

Norway

Peru

Portugal

Romania

Scotland

Seychelles

Italy: Sicily

Italy: Umbria’s festival season

South Africa: whale watching and shark-cage diving

St. Barts: annual sales

Turkey: Aegean Coast

Turkey: Cappadocia

Turkey: Istanbul

Uzbekistan

Washington: whale watching in the San Juan Islands

Zambia

Zimbabwe

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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