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The 12 best places to travel in June 2023

Looking for the best destinations for June? From cultured cities to the beaches of your dreams, we've got you covered

Written by
Emma Sparks
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Every year, more and more people seem to choose to take their summer holidays a little earlier. Why? Well, you’ll have to ask them. Everyone is different, but the lure of fewer crowds, lower prices and slightly less-scorching weather is clear. In the northern hemisphere, June is summer but not quite ‘July and August’ summer, while the temperatures in the south are also on the more bearable side of the ledger. We’ve compiled a collection of the best places to travel in June, although there is no such thing as a bad choice. How do the islands of Portugal, the seascape of Seattle and the beaches of Fiji sound? You don’t need to answer that…

RECOMMENDED:
🏖️ The best places to travel in July 
🌞 The best places to travel in August 
🌍 The 22 best things to do in the world
🌆 The best cities in the world 
🖼️ The 20 best museums and galleries in the world

Best places to travel in June

Whether you come for a grunge pilgrimage, that gum wall or the incredible great outdoors, Seattle’s distinct identity draws crowds from far and wide. The city’s fun-loving side is usually on full display in June as the artsy Fremont Solstice Parade stops traffic with a naked bike ride, and Seattle Pride paints the streets all colours of the rainbow. Other highlights include orca spotting in Puget Sound or sniffing out the costly-but-coveted Copper River salmon at Pike Place Market (only available from May until mid-June).

Discover the best things to do in Seattle

 

June is technically Fiji’s winter, but temperatures still hover in the mid-twenties (mid-seventies Fahrenheit), and this ‘cool’ weather makes for seriously epic sunsets. The archipelago’s turquoise waters are particularly clear at this time of year, ideal for snorkelling and diving. Viti Levu’s outer islands are a top choice for experienced divers looking for a liveaboard trip, while the Mamanucas boast calm seas and beautiful coral reefs. Resorts are getting busier, but you’re still likely to find a better deal than you would in July or August.

Discover the best things to do in Fiji

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It’s technically the rainy season on Malaysia’s west coast in June, but showers on Langkawi are short-lived, and sunshine often prevails. The main benefits of coming here in the shoulder season? Deserted attractions and bargain hotel stays. Popular Pantai Cenang beach is much quieter in June, while pretty Tanjung Rhu (which is far from the tourist hubs) can be practically empty. Take the cable car to the Skybridge on a blue-sky day for unforgettable jungle views.

Discover the best things to do in Langkawi

 

In the past, the cramped Old Town streets of Prague in summer have tended to provoke whispers of ‘overtourism.’ But the city is trying hard to reinvent itself – fewer pub crawls and horse-drawn carts, more culture and food – and if you venture away from the main hubs, you’ll find there’s plenty to see beyond Charles Bridge and the (tourist-proofed) Lennon Wall (although they’re still worth an early morning gander). June is not yet the apex of tourist season, but benefits from beautiful weather and (in regular years) a slew of delectable festivals, including the largest ice cream fest in Central Europe and a microbrewery bonanza.

The best things to do in Prague

 

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Zadar, Croatia
© Ivan Vuksa

5. Zadar, Croatia

Truth be told, you aren’t going to be able to avoid the crowds in Dalmatia during the summer. Heck, you can barely avoid them during the spring. If you want to visit the Croatian coast in quieter times, pack that windbreaker and head here in winter. Still, Zadar and June are a gorgeous combination, and what is sneakily the most exciting town in Dalmatia puts on its best face and puckers up for the visitors. The Salutation to the Sun is one of the region’s great attractions, accentuated by a gorgeous setting sun and a crisp Brlog craft beer. 

Zambia
Photograph: Shutterstock

6. Zambia

Zambia’s dry and bright conditions in June are ideal for wildlife spotting in the 3500 square-mile South Luangwa National Park, and one big bonus; mosquito numbers dwindle as the landscape dries out. Walking safaris were first pioneered right here, allowing you to get up close to the region’s flora, identify the dusty prints of baboons, hyenas, or even leopards and see just how gargantuan African elephants really are. If that’s not enough of an adrenaline hit, make a beeline for Victoria Falls, where you can bungee jump over the Zambezi.

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Boston, USA
Photograph: Shutterstock

7. Boston, USA

The Bruins probably don’t have many more years of contending left in them, but that doesn’t mean that June is going to all of a sudden become a quiet time of year in the Cradle of Liberty. America’s Walking City is at its most walkable during the summer, and the mass of street festivals attest to that, while concerts and other sporting events are a constant throughout the month. There’s also the small matter of whale watching, which is never a bad thing. 

June is one of the wettest months of Sri Lanka’s southwest monsoon season (April to September) but on the east coast, it is a different story. In Arugam Bay, blazing sunshine and consistent waves mean this month is made for surfing… or lazing in a hammock with a smoothie, if that’s more your style. Nearby Kumana National Park sees far fewer visitors than its southern sister Yala, meaning you can spot leopards, elephants and crocodiles without an entourage of jostling jeeps.

Discover the best things to do in Sri Lanka

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As if the Azores weren’t idyllic enough already, in June, these verdant volcanic islands in the middle of the Atlantic burst with colour as copious wildflowers come into bloom. The island of Flores (meaning flowers) is the best place to spot them, but Parque Terra Nostra on the main island of São Miguel is just as captivating and a real treat for botany boffins. You also stand a decent chance of spotting whales and dolphins in the wild, as the widest variety of cetacean species is migrating through these waters.

Discover the best things to do in the Azores

 

Copenhagen, Denmark
Photograph: poludziber / Shutterstock.com

10. Copenhagen, Denmark

June is a great time to make the trip to Copenhagen, as arguably Europe’s most stylish city comes alive in a blur of street festivals and shimmering class. The live music schedule is packed during the middle months meaning there’s plenty of choice for gig-hunters, while the Photo Festival showcases some of the finest photography from the other side of the lens. Copenhagen’s weather is arguably at its most enjoyable in June, which is reason enough to schedule a visit for this time. 

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Scottish Highlands
Photograph: Shutterstock

11. Scottish Highlands

Time to get rugged. Nowhere in the UK does ‘rugged’ as naturally as the Scottish Highlands, but even the rough terrain of these northern behemoths takes a break in June. The sun even makes a brief appearance here during June, making it the perfect time to explore as much of the region as possible without having to make a break for shelter at every turn. The midges are yet to show up in force, and eagle-eyed visitors might even get to spot a dolphin or two frolicking in the waters. 

Kyrgyzstan
Photograph: Shutterstock

12. Kyrgyzstan

Current events notwithstanding, central Asia is having a moment. Relaxed visa regulations mean the region is more accessible than ever, and its unparalleled combo of rich history, dazzling architecture and rugged landscapes are starting to draw a savvy crowd. From mid-June, Kyrgyzstan’s low-altitude hiking trails start to thaw out, the whitewater rafting season starts, and remote yurt camps welcome travellers looking for a digital detox. In mountainous Naryn, make time for the Kyrgyz Shyrdagy Festival, a celebration of the ancient Kyrgyz art of felt carpet making.

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