Travel & Leisure – Patricia Doherty, April 5, 2022
Summer arrives in June, and with it, plans for vacations and travel. Festivals are on the schedule again, and favorite summer destinations like Mackinac Island and Alaska are expecting plentiful guests. With many vacationers staying close to home, we’re suggesting domestic destinations that will be sure to see first-time visitors this year.
International travel is on the rise, and we’re offering some places that are lovely during this season, with much to do and see. As spring turns to summer, we hope your thoughts will turn to planning your own holiday travel.
Related: More summer vacation ideas
There’s always something happening in Music City, and this June will see the return of CMA Fest from June 9-12 at stages throughout Nashville. Daytime activities and outdoor stages are free and open to the public. Learn about Nashville’s role in the Civil Rights Movement with Tours by Locals and acclaimed historian David Steel E. Be one of the first at the new Conrad Nashville, opening in May 2022, less than five minutes from Music Row. Excellent places to stay also include Holston House, Bobby Hotel, The Westin Nashville, The Joseph, and Bode Nashville. Or choose a rental from Vacasa, like Illume 305 or Cumberland Cool, for a small group. Don’t miss Nashville’s great food, from hot chicken at Party Fowl to a modern American culinary experience at Saint Stephen with James Beard award-winner, Chef R.J. Cooper.
June’s late spring weather is perfect for getting to know Philadelphia, spending time among historic landmarks, and enjoying special events like the annual Philadelphia Flower Show. The nation’s largest and longest-running horticultural event will be held outdoors at FDR Park from June 11-18. For young travelers, there’s the Philadelphia Zoo, the Please Touch Museum, and Franklin Square, with miniature golf, a carousel, and the Franklin Square Fountain. Places to stay include The Rittenhouse Hotel with famed restaurant Lacroix. Loews Philadelphia Hotel is set in the historic PSFS Bank building. The chic W Philadelphia offers a rooftop pool, spa, and fitness center.
This island in the Adriatic off the Dalmatian Coast boasts sunny beaches, ancient cobblestone streets, and archaeological remains of the many civilizations that have inhabited the island throughout its history. The surrounding sea offers sailing, kayaking, and gorgeous waterfront views. Hvar has been a source of excellent wine since the first vines were planted there more than two thousand years ago. Summer season attracts celebrities, beach lovers, and visitors to the annual Hvar Summer Festival in June. Riva Marina, a historic waterfront hotel in Hvar Town, is completing a major renovation with plans to reopen on June 1. United Airlines will begin seasonal non-stop flights between Newark Airport and Dubrovnik (a ferry trip from Hvar) on May 27, with four weekly departures from Newark.
Warm weather and long days with about 18 hours of sunlight make June a great time for outdoor activities and wildlife sightings — two of many thrills of a trip to Alaska. See Alaska aboard an expedition ship with Hurtigruten Expeditions, and choose from a variety of itineraries departing from Vancouver or Anchorage. In Anchorage, Alyeska Resort offers a luxury experience with spa, pool, fitness center, and world-class dining. If you’re after a fishing experience, head to Ketchikan’s waterfront Salmon Falls Fishing Resort, where you’ll find great food and all the gear you’ll need for reeling in and taking home your catch — conveniently processed, packed, and ready to travel.
Mackinac Island, Michigan
This charming island destination is opening for the summer season, and lilacs are blooming. The festival honoring the fragrant flowers takes place from June 3-12, with a 10K run and a grand parade. There are no cars on the island — a real plus this year — and visitors get around by bike, horse-drawn carriage, or on foot. It’s a romantic destination for couples and fun for families with boating, fishing, exploring, and more. A range of lodging includes hotels, B&Bs, cottages, condos, and classic resorts. Family-owned and operated Mission Point Resort is set on 18 waterfront acres with six restaurants, spa, and a variety of activities. The historic Grand Hotel features guest rooms, suites, and the four-bedroom Masco Cottage, as well as spa, salon, and golf on The Jewel.
Winter in this Southern Hemisphere destination brings little rain and temperatures in the mid-80s. Sounds perfect? Add clear, warm seas, lush vegetation, white-sand beaches, coral reefs, and delightful people welcoming you to their beautiful islands — more than 100 in all. Tahiti comes to mind when we think of South Pacific islands. It’s the largest of the Society Islands and usually the starting point for exploring the Tuamotu Archipelago, Gambier Islands, the Marquesas, the Austral Islands, and the other Society Islands that include Bora Bora and Moorea. Places to stay range from luxury overwater bungalows to affordable guest houses, for an authentic island experience. Getting to French Polynesia doesn’t have to break the bank with flights from major U.S. cities on French Bee. As an example, one-way flights from San Francisco to Tahiti start at $329.
London, United Kingdom
Be part of the Platinum Jubilee holiday from June 2-5 celebrating Queen Elizabeth’s 70 years as monarch, the longest reign in the nation’s history, with parades, concerts, pageants, and more. June’s festivities also include the annual Trooping the Colour, a display of pageantry with the military, horses, musicians, and Queen Elizabeth in a procession down The Mall from Buckingham Palace. The famed Wimbledon Tennis Championship will take place from June 27-July 10. Come for these special events, but stay to enjoy all Great Britain has to offer — tradition, culture, history, the outdoors, and festivals. The Hampton Court Palace Festival features outdoor concerts throughout June at King Henry VIII’s historic Tudor palace. Lovely places to stay include The Stafford London, The Mayfair Townhouse, The Dorchester, and The Beaumont, and you can also choose accommodations from pubs to hostels and campsites.
Located in southeast Tennessee near the Georgia border, Chattanooga is set along the Tennessee River, where the Riverwalk provides restaurants, boat ramps, and natural beauty. The Tennessee Aquarium is celebrating 30 years, and the Chattanooga Zoo will soon reach a milestone with its 85th anniversary. The historic Bluff View Art District, high atop stone cliffs, features galleries, gardens, restaurants, coffee shops, the Hunter Museum of American Art, and stunning views of the river and downtown. Other museums to put on your itinerary include The National Medal of Honor Heritage Center, the Bessie Smith Cultural Center, Songbirds Center, and the Chattanooga Selfie Museum — for plenty of Instagrammable backgrounds. There’s plenty to do outdoors, too, so don’t miss Lookout Mountain and Raccoon Mountain Caverns. June brings the Riverbend Festival from June 3-5 and weekly Nightfall Concert Series every Friday evening.
The Horse Capital of the World, Lexington is home to more than 450 horse farms, famed Keeneland Racecourse, tours, carriage rides, and of course, horseback riding. Bourbon fans know Lexington’s distilleries and its history dating back hundreds of years. No matter which of Lexington’s many attractions are on your list, you’ll want to know about SoulFeast Restaurant Week, June 20-26, celebrating the city’s Black cuisine, and downtown’s Juneteenth Festival on June 18 with music, art, food, and chef demonstrations. Choose your lodging from Lexington’s many options that include the new boutique Elwood Hotel & Suites, The Origin Hotel, 21c Museum Hotel, and the Lexington Griffin Gate Marriott Golf Resort & Spa.
San Luis Obispo, California
This Central Coast town about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco is a great destination itself or an ideal place to stop for a few days on a California road trip along beautiful Highway One. Home of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, the town offers museums, restaurants, breweries, a well-preserved mission, beaches, and a variety of outdoor activities. Rich in culture, the town hosts an annual film festival and Museum of Art. In the middle of California’s Central Coast wine country, SLO (as locals call it) features tasting rooms, wine trails, and miles of scenic vineyards. Stay at the Hotel San Luis Obispo, with a spa, restaurants, and convenient location. Hotel Cerro features spacious guest rooms, eight residences, spa, rooftop pool, and casual French brasserie.
Tel Aviv, Israel
This Mediterranean beach destination is set along nine miles of shoreline with a promenade boasting restaurants, cafes, and a popular path for biking and strolling. Known for its lively nightlife, Tel Aviv’s jazz clubs and cocktail lounges are filled with revelers into the late hours. Historic architecture, delicious cuisine, theater, and a world-class Museum of Art are other attractions. In June, Tel Aviv PRIDE celebrations see thousands of visitors from around the world gathering from June 8-12, with a parade planned for June 10, marking the 23rd anniversary of the city’s first pride parade. In the heart of Tel Aviv, The Norman was converted from two historic buildings and features 30 guest rooms, 20 suites, and the restaurant ALENA. Newly opened this spring, The David Kempinski Tel Aviv offers 250 rooms, most with sea views, including 56 suites and a three-floor penthouse.
Luberon, Provence, France
As beautiful as it sounds, the south of France is even more stunning in June as lavender fields scent the air and color the rolling hills with pale purple blooms. Visitors tour lavender farms and come away with souvenirs of products made from the fragrant blossoms. In the heart of Provence, Luberon is also home to vineyards, markets, castles, and charming villages to explore. Coquillade Provence Resort & Spa, set on a 100-acre estate with vineyards and olive groves, offers spacious rooms and suites, restaurants, and Spa Coquillade, with treatments that include lavender oil and products from the vineyards. The Relais & Chateaux property is the ultimate home base for a luxurious visit to Provence in June.
Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada
A snow sports destination in winter and popular vacation spot in summer, the Okanagan Valley is known for farms, orchards, vineyards, lakes, and pine forests. Visit in June when the snow has melted and summer vacationers have not yet arrived in full force. The valley is British Columbia’s premier grape growing region as well as home to distilleries, cideries, and breweries. Wines produced there include chardonnay, cabernet sauvignon, merlot, sauvignon blanc, and many other varietals. At Phantom Creek Estates, the first vines were planted nearly fifty years ago, and the winery now produces Bordeaux reds, Alsatian whites, Viognier, and syrah. Stay at pet-friendly Spirit Ridge Lake Resort with a spa, golf, and Nk’Mip Cellars, the first Indigenous-owned winery in North America.
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