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  • Lindsay Paige Stein

Here's The Top 10 Summer Vacation Destinations, According to Travel Experts

Updated: Apr 29, 2021

If you're deciding on whether or not to take a summer vacation this year, there are plenty of reasons we can give you to follow your gut and plan that trip. I know you may be wondering if it's safe to plan travel with the coronavirus (COVID-19) issue that's unfortunately halting travel plans around the world, but it's never too early to dream up your summer plans in hopes that the anxiety and travel bans to/from the US will settle down soon. Always remember to stay up-to-date by checking the CDC travel advisory website frequently for resources and tips. Will coronavirus go away in the summer? No one can know for sure, but all we can do is continue to stay inspired and take care of ourselves.

Whether you're going on a quick weekend escape or a month-long journey, it's time to get your summer travel plans in check — and we've got all the inspiration and tips to help you make the most of it. Here are the top 10 destinations to travel to this Summer and why, according to Melissa Biggs Bradley, CEO and founder of Indagare, the members-only, boutique travel-planning company.

The rugged mountains, romantic villages, and beaches along the Adriatic coastline make the Balkan country of Montenegro a trending Mediterranean destination that's quickly gaining a reputation as a great place to travel. "On the Adriatic Sea, Greece and Croatia are now perennial favorites," Biggs Bradley said. "But up-and-coming Montenegro is gaining traction, too. It's got the coastal beauty of Croatia and, like Slovenia, another up-and-comer, offers tremendous value."

For even more reason to visit, hospitality brand Nikki Beach recently announced the opening of Nikki Beach Resort Montenegro in Summer 2020, and the luxury One&Only Portonovi hotel will be opening in July. While you're there, visit the glamorous town of Budva for the super yachts and bustling nightlife.

Montenegro, France

Zimbabwe is known for its diverse wildlife, and Summer is one of the best times for getting up close and personal with the animals. While you're there, make sure to take a panoramic helicopter ride over Victoria Falls. "Summer is the peak season for wildlife viewing in Zimbabwe, especially lions, elephants, hippos, rhinos, and buffalo," Biggs Bradley explained. "It's also home to some of Southern Africa's most soulful safari camps and expert guides, plus opportunities to interact with the local community."

There are tons of hotel options to choose from, but top favorites include the sunset-facing Victoria Falls Safari Lodge and the remote Singita Pamushana Lodge that holds only eight suites.


The small islands and towns on the East Coast make the ideal weekend getaways, especially for New Yorkers looking for a quick escape. Biggs Bradley said, "Our members are also looking closer to home. Beyond the Hamptons, Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, Rhode Island, and Maine are East Coast classics drawing repeat visitors year after year to their quintessentially New England resorts like the Wauwinet, Ocean House, and the revamped Harbor View Hotel, and activities like clambakes and sailing charters."

If you've already been to Paris, try visiting again to experience it in a totally new way. You can do this by venturing outside the city center or getting in touch with a travel specialist to find out where the best hidden-gem local cafes are. "The new J.K. Place Hotel in Paris gives travelers an intimate, boutique option with the warm service of an Italian hotel," Biggs Bradley said. "And just outside the city at Versailles, the soon-to-open Airelles Chateau will let you actually spend the night on the palace grounds, which has Francophiles [people with strong connections to France, the French language, or French culture] very excited."

Paris, France

If you're seeking a European getaway filled with sun and mouthwatering cuisine, you can never go wrong with Italy. For true Italian paradise, you should explore off the beaten path. "In Italy, the Amalfi Coast and Capri are always popular, of course, but Puglia, Sicily, and Ischia are trending, particularly for those who want to combine food, art, culture, and beach," Biggs Bradley said.

Of course, we don't know how long the coronavirus outbreak will last and with the current travel ban to Italy, we can only send our thoughts to the affected regions at this time.

One of Puglia's newest hotels that just opened this year is Paragon 700 Boutique Hotel & Spa, which has stunning architecture and decor throughout.

Whether you're cruising or staying at a luxury boutique hotel, Alaska has so much beauty to be explored, and the weather is surprisingly pleasant during the Summer. "Alaska is the ultimate destination for adventure-lovers, with untouched wilderness and dramatic landscapes on an immense scale," Biggs Bradley said. "Staying at one of its remote lodges means you might not see another human being during your day exploring."

Experience true adventure by staying at The Sheldon Chalet, a luxury hotel located in the middle of a glacier with world-class food and sightseeing straight from your suite. It's perched on a "nunatak" (an exposed hill surrounded by glacier) bordering Alaska's Denali National Park, at 6,000 feet elevation.

New nonstop flights from the United States to Poland (both Warsaw and Kraków) are opening up the country to American travelers. Poland in the Summer is filled with outdoor concerts, festivals, and warm weather. "Its fascinating, complex history and vibrant current cultural scene make it a rising favorite with our members," Biggs Bradley said.

When traveling in the Summer, you can catch the Kraków Film Festival from May 31 to June 7 and Jazz na Starówce in Warsaw (free Saturday concerts in the Old Town Square) from July through August.

For total seclusion and adventure, head to the canyons of Utah this summer. It's the perfect destination to recharge and remember why you adore traveling in the first place. "Indagare members who've stayed at Utah's Amangiri are excited to go back and experience the resort's new tented Camp Sarika debuting this Spring, with 10 one- and two-bedroom pavilion suites and private pools, secluded in the wilderness."

The Summer is considered the best time to travel to Indonesia, with its warm waters and cool ocean breezes. "It's a long journey, but Indonesia has become one of our most asked-about destinations, especially a yacht charter to its lesser-visited islands of Raja Ampat," Biggs Bradley said. "Summer is the perfect season for Komodo National Park, comprising more than 25 gorgeous tropical islands, some of which are home to the legendary lizard."

Recently, Anantara Uluwatu Bali unveiled its 72 newly refurbished luxury suites, private pool villas, and penthouses cascading from a cliff above the rolling waves of the Indian Ocean.

The scenic California road trip is a must-do for this Summer. Even if you don't like long drives, the diversity and stunning views will create unforgettable travel memories. "'Slow travel' is becoming increasingly popular for members who want to take the time to experience a destination on the ground," Biggs Bradley said. "One place that we recommend, particularly for families, is a multiday road trip along the California coast from San Francisco to Big Sur to Santa Barbara or LA. There are fabulous, family-friendly hotels, plus incredible scenery — visible from the car, yes, but also on beautiful hikes off Route 1."

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