The 30 best summer holidays for people who hate the heat


Baking seashores in August not your factor? From forest retreats in Scandinavia and polar bears in Spitsbergen, to Australia’s Nice Ocean Street and the ski slopes of Chile, our writers reveal 30 nice escapes from the summer season warmth.

There’s no hazard of mosquitoes or baking-hot sand on the coast of Northumberland. What one can find in Bamburgh, Alnmouth and Beadnell are miles of dunes, pancake-flat sands, open areas and stiff breezes to spring-clean the cobwebs. Take a ship journey from Seahouses to seal-watch on the Farne Islands, discover mighty fortress ruins corresponding to Dunstanburgh and Warkworth, then feast on contemporary crabs and lobsters.

A skinny blue line of lakes sandwiched between the Cairngorms and the northern Highlands gives a handily flat(ish) route from Inverness to Fort William for a nine-day self-guided biking tour, following largely traffic-free trails from the Moray Firth to Oban. See Loch Ness, Culloden and Glencoe, mattress down in magnificent mansions and castles – and cease off for a fortifying dram at a whisky distillery.

With a lot speak about the way forward for the border between Northern Eire and Eire, now appears a great time to leap aboard the Belmond Grand Hibernian. There are a variety of summer season journeys with themes corresponding to “legends and loughs” or “style of Eire”. The six-day northbound Grand Tour of Eire travels seamlessly between south and north, taking in highlights such because the Blarney Stone, Galway and Dublin within the south and the award-winning Titanic Expertise in Belfast. 

It’s been stated that the craggy coast of far south-west Wales is Cornwall with out the crowds – and it boasts a coastal footpath the equal of England’s longest nationwide path on empty seashores and cliff-top tracks, previous islands and coves sheltering seabirds, seals and dolphins. Spot puffins and razorbills on Skomer island, go to fairly fishing villages and bijou St David’s Cathedral on the self-guided Better of Pembrokeshire strolling vacation.

Simply in case it’s a little scorching within the Lake District (it does occur), go underground. The “hobbit holes” – wood cabins constructed into the hillside at The Quiet Website campsite close to Ullswater – are “burrow-living with comforts”. Tucked into the gently sloping web site, a 30-minute stroll from Ullswater beneath, they’re toastily insulated, have sleeping benches, their very own loos, and a coated patio helpful simply in case it rains (this additionally often occurs within the Lakes). Very handily, there’s a bar housed within the web site’s 18th-century barn.

  • From £100 per evening in excessive season, minimal three-night keep, for 2 adults and 4 kids (07768 727016; thequietsite.co.uk).

Europe

6. Solar, sea and Strandkörbe

Germany

Within the rush for the Med, the string of resorts lining the Ostsee (Baltic Sea) and the Nord See (North Sea) coast in northern Germany get little or no look-in from British guests. Resorts corresponding to Kühlungsborn (the “German Riviera”) are stuffed with Strandkörbe (wicker basket chairs) that supply safety from each solar and wind. 

Kühlungsborn Credit score: istock

  • Lodge Polar-Stern (0049 38293 8290; polar-stern.com) in Kühlungsborn affords double rooms from €136 within the excessive season. Fly to Hamburg.

7. Camp Ice Cap 

Greenland

In a rustic coated largely with ice, there’s little danger of sleepless, clammy nights – particularly if you happen to pitch a tent in its frozen far reaches. For a mild introduction to the lifetime of an Arctic explorer, be part of a guided two-hour trek from Kangerlussuaq, utilizing crampons and poles to sort out the Greenland ice cap and attain a ready-made expedition camp for the evening. 

  • Magnetic North Journey (01664 400103; magneticnorthtravel.com) affords a four-night break together with one evening at Camp Ice Cap from £2,150 per individual. Flights further.

8. On observe for heights

Switzerland

The road to the very best level a practice reaches in Europe needs to be the easiest way to flee the warmth. Journey the attractive valleys of the Bernese Oberland south from Interlaken, climbing to Jungfraujoch station at 11,332ft. Look down Europe’s longest tongue of ice, the 14-mile (23km) Aletsch Glacier, over lunch in one of many 5 summit eating places.

The mighty Aletsch Glacier Credit score: istock

  • Interlaken-Jungfraujoch return prices from £137; bookable by means of Swiss Journey Centre (020 7420 4900; swisstravelsystem.co.uk).

9. Pining for the fjords 

Norway  

Norway is a good alternative for a summer season cruise since you are by no means removed from the shore – and for a lot of the time it’s mild. Take pleasure in the fantastic thing about the fjords or sail all the best way to the northernmost level of the European land mass – Nord Cap – and past to Kirkenes, a stone’s throw from the Russian border.

  • Hurtigruten (020 3131 6585; hurtigruten.co.uk) affords a seven-day voyage between Bergen and Kirkenes in August from £1,360, excluding flights.

10. Curonian class

Lithuania

Through the Chilly Conflict, the white sand seashores lining the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia have been in style with Soviet bigwigs corresponding to Leonid Brezhnev and Boris Yeltsin. Their favorite was the dacha-filled resort of Jurmala, a brief drive from the Latvian capital of Riga. These days we are able to all take pleasure in this spectacular coast. For one thing actually particular, seek for amber on the Curonian Spit between Lithuania and the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad.

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  • Regent Holidays (0207 666 1244; regent-holidays.co.uk) affords a seven-night journey to the Lithuanian capital Vilnius and the resort of Nida in August from £870 per individual; contains flights with Wizz Air.

11. Scrumptious Dolomites

Italy

The Alta Badia valley in northern Italy is famed for resorts and eating places spangled with Michelin stars. Every summer season its mountain “huts” (an unduly modest time period for alpine eateries, lots of them very trendy) supply an in depth menu of gastronomic actions to gasoline hikers, cyclists, horseriders and rafters. 

  • Powder Byrne (020 8246 5300; powderbyrne.com) affords a week-long tailored package deal from £2,800, together with half-board lodging, three lunches; however not flights. 

12. Mountain majesty

Austria 

In a rustic of mountain vistas and funky lakes, the Salzkammergut area to the east of Salzburg has a specific majesty. Cultural treasures abound, such because the beautiful Gothic altarpiece crafted by the 15th-century grasp Michael Pacher within the pilgrimage city of St Wolfgang. Historical past buffs can head to the spa city of Unhealthy Ischl, the place Emperor Franz Josef summered for greater than 60 years in succession.

Head for peace and quiet in Salzkammergut Credit score: istock

  • An Emperor Room with lake view balcony on the Im Weissen Rössl (White Horse Inn) on Lake Wolfgang prices from €330 an evening: weissesroessl.at.

13. Polar bear ahoy!

Spitsbergen

Within the excessive Arctic, overheating is never an issue regardless of 24-hour daylight in midsummer. However look out for polar bears – recognizing the world’s largest land carnivore is a spotlight of a cruise across the icy Svalbard archipelago. On Zodiac (and, climate allowing, kayak) excursions you may additionally encounter walrus, white beluga and thriving chook life, in addition to outdated whaling stations and the summery-sounding 14th of July Glacier.

  • Exodus Travels (020 3733 2535; exodus.co.uk) affords a 13-day cruise round Svalbard from £6,000 together with flights. 

14. Masurian magic

Poland

The land mass of Poland can get fairly scorching in the summertime, so many Poles preserve cool in Masuria, the closely forested japanese a part of the nation referred to as the “land of a thousand lakes”. Galery69 is a delightfully arty lodge on the shores of Lake Wulpinskie. Eat, stroll, kayak and swim. Then drink wine on the jetty proper on the lake. Repeat.

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15. Into the wild

Faroe Islands

The four-seasons-in-one-day local weather of this Atlantic archipelago prompted British troops stationed right here throughout the Second World Conflict to christen it “The Land of Perhaps”. But when its climate doesn’t lure sun-seekers, guests are amply rewarded with epic landscapes – plunging waterfalls, cliffs bustling with seabirds, valleys studded with turf-roofed timber farmhouses – and a few of Scandinavia’s best seafood within the capital Torshavn. 

  • A self-drive week with Magnetic North Journey (01664 400103; magneticnorthtravel.com) prices from £1,395, together with flights from Edinburgh, seven nights’ B&B lodging and automotive rent.

16. Glaciers and scorching springs 

Iceland

The world’s largest man-made ice cave, Into the Glacier, has been carved into the slopes of Langjokull Glacier, and will be reached solely by an eight-wheel-drive modified navy missile launcher. After chilling within the tunnels, take a dip in Grindavik’s Blue Lagoon. New on-site lodge The Retreat has its personal steaming pool of geothermal water, reserved just for friends. 

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  • Regent Holidays (020 7666 1244; regent-holidays.co.uk) supply a three-night keep at The Retreat from £2,985 per individual, with a go to to Into the Glacier. Flights included.

17. Black Forest bonanza

Germany 

These densely wooded hills loom giant within the German psyche. You’ll be able to hike, bike or experience a hi-tech scooter for 5 miles down the Schauinsland mountain. Don’t miss Freiburg, with its wonderful cathedral, enjoyable taverns and award-winning vineyards close by. And positively don’t miss a slice of Black Forest gateau… 

  • Fred. Holidays (0808 250 7755; fredholidays.co.uk) affords a three-centre week within the Black Forest from £959, together with automotive rent, B&B lodging and flights.

18. Ace archipelago 

Sweden

There’s a hazard that the temperature on the 30,000-island-strong archipelago surrounding Stockholm might rise to 86F (30C) in the summertime. Nevertheless it might equally be reassuringly beneath 60F (15C). Come what might, there will probably be ample alternative to retreat to your forest cabin, take pleasure in car-free calm, shady refuge beneath pine bushes, swims in contemporary water oases and lazy boat rides from island to island. Mix with time in Stockholm, or the rugged islands round Gothenburg.

Sweden’s archipelagos are charming and plentiful Credit score: istock

  • Nature Travels (01929 503080; naturetravels.co.uk) affords a six-day Island Hopping and Mountain climbing itinerary within the Stockholm Archipelago from £762, excluding flights.

19. Musk ox safari

Norway

Africa has elephants and rhinos, however head north to Dovrefjell Nationwide Park, close to Trondheim, to trace musk oxen on foot. The animals have been translocated from Greenland within the Thirties and in the summertime, females come all the way down to the Driva river to present start – so much less likelihood of overheating on a hike. 

  • Hikes of five-seven hours value £41 from Oppdal Safari (moskussafari.no); Norwegian (norwegian.com/uk) flies to Trondheim from Gatwick from £90.20 return.

20. Peak within the Picos 

Spain

By no means thoughts baking in Benidorm, the northern area of Spain is delightfully temperate and along with the cultural, coastal (and culinary) treasures of Bilbao and San Sebastian, can also be house to the Picos de Europa mountains and nationwide park. Give your self just a few days to discover – not least as a result of these spectacular peaks can ceaselessly be shrouded in cloud.

The river Rio Cares within the Nationwide Park Los Picos de Europa Credit score: istock

  • Brittany Ferries (brittany-ferries.co.uk) sails between Portsmouth and Santander, Portsmouth and Bilbao and Plymouth and Santander; lowest customary return (Portsmouth-Santander) is £428 (automotive and two passengers).

Additional afield

21. Backyard glories 

South Africa

Sandwiched between the Outeniqua mountains and the Indian Ocean, this coastal strip is watered by an intricate community of rivers and lakes. Winters are balmy, with sunny dawns pushing the mercury to a mean 64F (18C), splendid for the various wine estates. It’s in style in peak season, however get right here in August and the pure playground is yours to discover, and lodging costs are all-time low. Finest performed as a looping street journey from Cape City.

  • Africa Journey (africatravel.com 020 7843 3500) affords a seven-night Backyard Route itinerary in August from £1,595 per individual, together with lodging, automotive rent and flights from Heathrow on British Airways.  

22. Rocky mountain excessive

Canada

Benefit from the journey of a lifetime in Western Canada, the place moist air blows in from the ocean. Take VIA Rail or the Rocky Mountaineer from Jasper by means of the peaks to Vancouver, North America’s finest – and most reasonably priced – foodie scene. A 45-minute flight will get you to Tofino, on Vancouver Island. Discover the Pacific Rim Nationwide Park; hike the rainforest; go kayaking; surf subsequent to empty sandy seashores. 

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  • Canada As You Prefer it (020 8742 8299; canadaasyoulikeit.com) has two-week Western Canada adventures, together with the practice journey throughout the Rockies, Vancouver and 5 nights in Tofino, from £2,195, flights and lodging included.  

23. Let’s ski

Chile

There’s snow on the Andean peaks above Santiago yr spherical. The grand outdated resort of Portillo, with 18 runs, is 100 miles from downtown and contains three separate valleys, collectively making up South America’s largest skiable space. Past the central area there’s good snowboarding in Chillán, Pucón and on the Osorno volcano within the lakes – and on the opposite facet of the Andes, on the Argentine resorts of Las Leñas and Bariloche.

  • Pura Aventura (01273 676712, pura-aventura.com) packages up Portillo with an Atacama keep; 15 days from £5,450 plus flights. 

24. Monsoon magic

India

The monsoon season could seem a counterintuitive time to go to India, however Coorg is at its finest in August, a contemporary and inexperienced panorama with spectacular waterfalls. Typically known as “the Scotland of India”, it’s within the southern state of Karnataka and is dotted with espresso and cardamom plantations, orange groves, paddy fields and tropical forests. The world’s hill-station capital, Madikeri, is small-town India at its most participating.

Waterfalls in Karnataka Credit score: istock

  • Cox & Kings (020 3642 0861; coxandkings.co.uk) has a 14-night non-public tour of southern India in August from £3,195; contains two nights in Coorg, flights, transfers, excursions and lodging.

25. Fall for the falls

Argentina

“Iguazu” means “nice waters”. The 2-mile large canyon of thundering falls is actually that, but it surely’s the rainforest framing it, alive with morpho butterflies and toucans, that makes it magical. The Awasi Iguazu lodge affords luxurious stays with very good eating. That is the sub-tropics, so winter is a bit cooler, and as soon as July is out of the best way, the crowds are smaller. 

  • Journey Latin America (0208 747 8315, journeylatinamerica.co.uk) visits Iguazu on its Buenos Aires to Rio 10-day “Worth” tour, from £1,517 plus flights. 

26. Whales and wildlife

Alaska

There’s no scarcity of cool in Alaska (travelalaska.com), an space six instances bigger than the UK. It’s not too chilly, with a mean July temperature within the state capital Juneau of 63F (17C). A cruise from Vancouver is a good summer season introduction to the area, with the prospect to see whales and an immense medley of islands, fjords, mountains and glaciers.

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  • Crystal (020 7399 7601; crystalcruises.co.uk) affords Alaskan cruises together with a July 2 six-day Vancouver-Anchorage voyage from £1,899, excluding fights.

27. Treehouse deal with

Canada 

Sleeping in a treehouse, surrounded by the contemporary foliage of poplar, pine and birch: what may very well be extra romantic? Canopées lits, actually treetop beds, are cosy log cabins perched on stilts 17ft above the bottom. Rustic comforts embrace correct beds, kitchenettes, electrical energy, bathe and eco-friendly dry loos. On the fundamental lodge are video games, the campfire – and Wi-Fi. Close by, Saguenay Fjord affords dramatic cliffs, mountaineering, kayaking and whale-watching cruises. It’s 20 minutes from the village of Tadoussac. 

  • Home windows on the Wild (020 8742 1556; windowsonthewild.com) affords two weeks in Quebec, together with 5 nights at Canopée Lit from £1,845, together with automotive rent, lodging, flights.

28. Nice Ocean Street 

Australia

Australia within the depths of its winter has lower than baking temperatures – and much fewer guests. Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth are all far more manageable in cooler climes and, whereas it might nonetheless be somewhat chilly to drive the Nice Ocean Street in July, a month later you need to be getting the primary inklings of spring sunshine as you strategy the Twelve Apostles. The Nice Otway Nationwide Park will probably be suitably lush, and hardy surfers in wetsuits will probably be using the waves. Do you have to wish to mix with one thing somewhat hotter, there’s at all times Darwin within the north…

Many highlights await on the Nice Ocean Street Credit score: istock

  • For Nice Ocean Street driving ideas, see australiaroadtrip.co.uk. The Personal Tour Information (0061 0400 054 015, theprivatetourguide.com) has a three-day non-public guided tour for 2, together with meals and two nights in four-star resorts for AU$3,610 (£2,030).

29. Time to tango

Argentina 

Buenos Aires could be the “Paris” of the River Plate but it surely doesn’t really feel like that when the climate is scorching. In winter, although, BA has a nostalgic really feel. That is the season for locro bean stews in its outdated eating places and scorching chocolate and churros within the grand cafés. It’s a great time for dancing, with the annual BA Worldwide Tango Competition from Aug 9-22. The nation’s fundamental agro truthful, La Rural, brings prize bulls and gauchos on July 18-29. 

  • British Airways (ba.com) flies London to BA direct from £854.

30. Safari categorical

Zimbabwe

Journey in an elegantly restored sleeper practice – the Stimela Star – from the Victoria Falls to Hwange Nationwide Park in Zimbabwe. The tour, launched in June, has a few departures in August, when the wildlife within the recreation park will probably be at its finest and the temperatures will common 77F (25C) within the daytime and a fantastically chilly 41F (5C) at evening. Pack a jumper! 

  • Knowledgeable Africa (020 3405 6666; expertafrica.com) affords a 10-day package deal together with time at Victoria Falls, Hwange Nationwide Park and a journey on the Stimela Star from £4,596 per individual. Consists of flights.

Contributions by Paul Wade, Kathy Arnold, Stephen McClarence, Paul Bloomfield, Sarah Marshall, John Wilmott, Adrian Bridge, Pippa de Bruyn, Chris Moss, Helen Pickles and Tim Jepson.



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