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We’re going to let you in on a little secret: There’s a part of us that absolutely hates the summer. It’s hot and sticky and we always look and feel gross. But that’s just us (and maybe you). If you’re with us, consider taking your summer vacay at one of these domestic or international locales where you won’t spend the whole time wishing you were in a freezer.

summer travel anchorage
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Anchorage, Alaska

Alaska’s most populous city is awesome. Not only is it drop-dead gorgeous (it’s surrounded by snow-capped peaks and volcanoes); if you go between May and September you’ll experience up to 19 1/2 hours of sunlight--which, while inconvenient for extended periods of time, is pretty awesome for a week.

Average July temperature: 59°


Edinburgh, Scotland

Well, isn’t this regal? Scotland’s capital is built on a series of hills, making for countless stunning views, many of the dramatic and imposing Edinburgh Castle. Despite all the history, Edinburgh is thoroughly modern, with fantastic galleries and world-famous festivals including the Fringe, the world’s largest arts festival. For all its cultural attributes, consider Edinburgh a folksy, less touristy London.

Average July temperature: 59°

summer travel novascotia

Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia

Visiting this pristine island is like taking a trip back in time. What it lacks in state-of-the-art everything it makes up for in sheer beauty. That’s not to say there’s nothing to do: Those looking for a little adventure would be wise to check out Glenora, North America’s first single-malt whisky distillery, or the remarkable Fortress of Louisbourg, a national historical site.

Average July temperature: 61°

summer travel sanfran

San Francisco, California

Cue the Full House theme song. San Francisco is a favorite of ours all year round, but particularly in the summer, when ideal weather conditions make for visits that are somehow even more unforgettable. Dine at any one of the city’s many world-class restaurants and take full advantage of SF’s thriving cultural scene. Your only problem will be not having enough time to experience it all.

Average July temperature: 57°

RELATED: 22 Things You Can’t Leave San Francisco Without Eating

summer travel reykjavic

Reykjavik, Iceland

Iceland’s coastal capital is quirky and beautiful and, yes, cool in the summer. For as compact as it is, there are a ton of museums (and really rad street art), delicious restaurants and an absurdly lively nightlife scene. For that reason, heads up that Reykjavik might not be quite as family-friendly as some of the other options on this list.

Average July temperature: 56°

summer travel bogota

Bogota, Colombia

When you think about places that aren’t boiling hot in the summer, Colombia probably doesn’t come to mind. So it comes as a pleasant surprise that you can experience Bogotá’s fascinating mix of modern worldliness and history without breaking a sweat. Steeped in culture, this cobblestone-street city makes for the vacation of a lifetime.

Average July temperature: 56°

RELATED: 6 Summer Vacations Where the Dollar Is Strong