Where’s good to travel to in July?

School’s out and that means it’s the holiday season. July is by far one of the most popular months for a sun-drenched getaway – especially for families – and many tourist hotspots open their doors. Obviously, the Mediterranean is at its peak during the summer months but what if you’re not looking for that typical summer break and are looking for something alternative? We’ve rounded up the destinations that offer their best weather in July, including places you wouldn’t immediately consider.

1. Iceland

A waterfall in Iceland

Iceland’s ethereal landscape is a must-witness and there’s no better time to explore it than in July as the sun only sets for roughly 4 hours! The darkened hours aren’t even that dark and even resemble twilight hours, a phenomenon known as ‘midnight sun’.

2. Kenya

A kenya tribe playing instruments

If you’re going to book that once-in-a-lifetime safari to Kenya, organise it for July. This is when the wildebeest start their great migration from the Serengeti to the Masai Mara. The stunning coast that overlooks the azure Indian Ocean is also as its best at this time of year.

3. South Pacific

Shoreline of Fiji from above

Fiji and the other islands in the South Pacific offer some of the best diving experiences in the world. July falls within Fiji’s dry season when the water is at its clearest and on a perfect day you’ll be amazed at the reefs and 1,000 species of fish you’ll find in one quick snorkel session.

4. Alaska

The rocky coastline of Alaska during the day

Summer isn’t just a beautiful time to visit Alaska’s rugged coastline, it’s logistically easier as cruises only tend to run in the warmer months. And for good reason: local shops are more likely to be open, there’s a wider choice of activities and excursions, plus the wildlife is in abundance (especially bears, who are more likely to be seen hanging out by the rivers thanks to the summer salmon migration).

5. New Zealand

People skiing in the New Zealand mountains

Ski enthusiasts don’t have to wait until the Northern Hemisphere is speckled with snowflakes every year. Instead they can head to New Zealand, where the ‘Southern Alps’ are coated with enough snow to make it a sought-after ski and snowboard destination. Mount Dobson, Ohau, Mount Hutt and Coronet Peak are all popular with local and international skiers.

6. Brazil

The Rio de Janeiro harbour at sunset. Photo taken from the mainland looking out

The best time to soak up the energy of Rio de Janeiro and admire the beauty of the Iguazu Falls is actually Brazil’s winter. In the Southern Hemisphere’s summer months, temperatures can reach an uncomfortable 40ºC – but July roughly sits at a pleasant 24ºC. It’s also a great month for surfers as the waves rise up on the famous Ipanema beach.

7. Aruba

A broadway in Aruba

Summer is not the high season in the Caribbean, as there is a higher chance of rain. However, Aruba’s southerly location means that it misses out on the most of rainy forecast and has great weather year round. Strictly speaking Aruba isn’t better in July, it’s merely one of the few Caribbean islands that isn’t in its off-season at this time of year.

8. Canada

Mont-tremblant-village in the Rocky Mountains.

This beautiful country shares a similar climate to that of Northern Europe and mirrors much of the weather we see during the summer months. Everything is clearer and days are lighter for longer – plus the Rocky Mountaineer routes are in full swing and it’s cruise season along both the east and west coasts.

9. Scandinavia

Colourful houses along the Copenhagen harbour

Just like the northern countries of Iceland and Canada, Scandinavia is at its best when the sun shines over the Northern Hemisphere. Whether it’s a city break to Stockholm or Copenhagen , or a cruise through the Baltics or up the Norwegian coast to the North Cape – there are plenty of opportunities for an enjoyable break to Scandinavia with good weather.

10. UK

A lighthouse against a rocky coastline in Wales. The photo is taken from the mainland looking out

If you’re a sun-lover, maybe leave the sunshine holiday until the winter and make the most the UK’s best month by staying put. July is by far one of the best months to explore what the UK has to offer – whether it’s a trip into London, a beach break to Cornwall, a countryside escape to Wales or a weekend away exploring Scotland’s historical sites.

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Morag Lee

Morag is the resident blog writer at Barrhead Travel. Can usually be found exploring a cruise ship or on a city break.