12 Travel Ideas – One Big Adventure For Each Month Of The Year
If you’re looking for cool travel ideas for your wish list and you’re wondering when is the perfect time to visit each of them, this list is exactly what you need.
I’ve selected 12 fabulous destinations. To maximise your experience, I’ve thoroughly researched what is the best month of the year for each of them.
No matter whether you’re looking for adventure travel ideas, the best time to visit a famous city without the crowds, or the perfect beach to suntan your tushy, this list has you covered.
Let’s dig in!
January: Escape The Crowds In Festive Italy
While during the holiday season Italy is very crowded with tourists, once the New Year arrives, the streets become emptier. The most iconic Italian cities – such as Venice, for example – have suffered for years from the consequences of overtourism.
Hence, I recommend you beat the crowds and visit Italy in January. The Italian winter is quite mild with only the occasional rains and very little snow in the cities.
Here are a few ideas of what you could do in Italy in January:
- Visit Milan and enjoy the beautiful festive decorations, while walking around the shopping district without hordes of tourists. Check what free things you can do in the 2nd largest Italian city.
- Get lost in the narrow alleys of Venice and spend hours at San Marco square without being pushed from every side.
- Shoot amazing photos of the Duomo and other incredible places in Florence without having hundreds of unknown people in your pictures.
- Go back in time 2,000 years and experience a snapshot of life in the 1st century AD while strolling the streets of ancient Pompeii.
- Enter a fairytale and explore the small Italian towns of the Amalfi Coast, Cinque Terre, and Lombardy.
Want to see more than one city? These ready to use Italy road trips itineraries will give you further ideas for travel.
Start planning a trip to Italy as soon as possible, as earthquakes have destroyed more than a few buildings in the past couple of years. Who knows which masterpiece might be lost next?
February: Escape Winter In Tropical Cuba
Since Cuba opened for US tourists, things are changing rapidly in the country.
Soon the iconic old cars will start to disappear from the streets of Havana, so if you want to see this signature sight and drive a car, which might be older than you, start planning your trip to the Caribbean island.
If you’re unsure how to plan your vacation, check my step by step guide on planning a vacation the right way.
Don’t just visit the all-inclusive resorts in Varadero or Cayo Coco.
They’re not going anywhere and big chain resorts are all the same in every country anyway.
Here are some more adventurous travel ideas instead:
- try to spend a few days exploring the capital Havana,
- visit the old town of Trinidad, which is a UNESCO heritage site,
- hike in the Cuban jungles, and
- stop by the tobacco fields in the inland.
Don’t forget to try the iconic Cuban cigars, coffee and rum, which are also great travel souvenirs.
March: Visit The Diverse Costa Rica
With 12 climate zones and extremely diverse relief, the tiny Central American country offers an adventure for every taste.
The lush jungles and the magnificent volcanos are a nice escape from the hot weather at the beaches. The national parks and even the trees at the side of the road boast wild animals.
In fact, Costa Rica is the country with the most diverse wildlife in the world! And if that’s not enough to get you excited and packing, imagine the underwater world and the fantastic diving spots Costa Rica offers.
The roads are pretty decent and taking a road trip is a must. Check this 10-day Costa Rica itinerary to get an idea how much you can see and do in just a few days!
Don’t fool yourself, though, that you can explore the whole country on one trip. The distances might be small, but you’ll make so many stops, not wanting to miss a thing on your journey, that a 2-hour drive will suddenly stretch for half a day or longer.
And if you were clever to rent a 4WD car, take the back roads to discover the hidden beauty of Costa Rica.
April: Enjoy Spring In Belgium
For some unclear reason, Belgium is not considered a great travel destination.
I believe only people, who’ve never visited this small European gem, can jump to this conclusion.
The country offers basically everything a true traveller can wish for:
- friendly people,
- great variety of food and drinks,
- magnificent architecture,
- seacoast with endless beaches, and
- excellent infrastructure to be able to visit them all.
April is the month with less rainfall, which means that you can take long walks through the cobblestone streets of the fairy-tale little towns of Bruges, Namur, or Leuven.
You can visit the second largest city Antwerp for some exquisite shopping (it’s the capital of the diamonds industry!) or to admire the art of Rubens.
You can enjoy a gourmet dinner or a unique beer in one of the historical buildings around the market square in the capital. And, there are a tonne more things to do in Brussels.
Just a friendly reminder: don’t even think of tasting every Belgian beer, as there are 180 breweries in the country, producing over a thousand original beers.
May: Visit Germany During The Driest Month
Weather in Germany is known to be unpredictable and unpleasant.
My tip for Germany: travel in May!
The days are long, the temperatures are high, and there’s enough sunshine during the day. It is not hot, so you can explore the busy cities or cute little towns. It’s raining less than during other months and everything is lush and blossoming.
Despite the big distances in Germany, the good infrastructure allows for travelling fast and covering a large area within a short period of time.
It is heaven for speed lovers: the trains travel at 300+ km/h and on highways without speed limits you can test your car’s maximum speed.
If you’re concerned about recent terrorist attacks in the big German cities, then head to the smaller picturesque towns or fairy-tail castles along the Rhine. And for culture and museum lovers, it’s a real paradise here, too.
June: Explore The Dominican Republic Beaches Without The Crowds
The travel ideas for the summer begin, of course, with a great place to work on your tan.
The Dominican Republic is most popular for its all-inclusive resorts and endless white-sand beaches. If you leave the comfortable but artificial complexes, you’ll discover the real colours and beauty of the island country.
Travel ideas include:
- secluded beaches, like Playa Rincon and Playa Limon (check the whole list here),
- lush mountains,
- cool waterfalls,
- the last secret pearl of the Caribbean, and
- deep caves like Cueva Fun Fun to explore and satisfy the adventurer in you.
For further ideas, check my comprehensive list of Punta Cana excursions. And for the best advice, read what invaluable Dominican Republic travel tips I’ve gathered for you.
July: See The Midnight Sun In Sweden
You might be aware of the fact that you can see the Northern Lights in winter in Sweden.
But did you know you could also see the Midnight Sun?
In summer, the sun doesn’t set at all and at midnight it’s still pretty high above the horizon.
To see this amazing spectacle, you’ll need to travel further north than the capital Stockholm or the charming Malmö. Use the comfortable Swedish Railways to get to Luleå on a night train.
If you don’t want to travel that far, but still want to enjoy nature, there are great travel ideas for you directly in the capital Stockholm.
Just hop on a boat and visit the islands of the Archipelago or the sweet water lake Mälaren in the opposite direction. The waters are so clean, that you can not only go for a swim but drink from the lake without a second thought!
Other cool travel ideas for you while in Stockholm include a visit to one of the fantastic museums or galleries. Even the subway stations in Stockholm are a stunning art gallery.
My tip for Stockholm: visit Vasa Museum, the home of a 300-year-old warship!
While the ship itself was one of the biggest failures in history as it sank almost immediately, taking it out of the water after nearly 300 years and displaying it in the museum turned into one of the biggest museum successes.
August: Take The Most Epic Road Trip In Tajikistan
Even if you have no idea where Tajikistan is located, I’m sure you love epic road trips!
While summer temperatures reach 35°C in the Tajik cities, the high altitude of the Pamir Mountains offers refreshing coolness.
The season is perfect for camping or spending the night in typical yurts.
The biggest problem might arise from going to a higher altitude too fast.
The Pamir Highway is perfect for any adventurer, but better hire a guide and an experienced driver to take you through the mountain roads, as their condition is sometimes disastrous.
If you’re looking for an unforgettable adventure travel idea, this is the right trip for you! A word of advice before you go: read my tips before leaving home.
September: Discover The Wild Variety Of Sites In Bulgaria
At the end of the hot summer, the capital city of Bulgaria, Sofia, starts to get noisier and more crowded as people return from their summer holidays.
The cultural season starts with concerts and theatre premiers. The city is full of life and the late summer nights are still long and warm for dining and partying outside.
But if you’re not so fond of big cities and crowds, now is also a perfect time to go hiking or trekking in the Bulgarian mountains.
For extreme adventures, head to Rila or Pirin with their 2,500+ m high peaks. For more casual trails, don’t miss the magical Rhodope Mountains.
September is also a great month to visit the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. The weather might be a little unpredictable with casual short rains but the crowds are gone and chances are you’ll have the beaches all to yourself. Read what hidden gems you can find at the seaside here.
Not a nature lover?
No problem, travel ideas also include cute little towns and villages, like Melnik, Koprivshtitsa and Tryavna. They offer great vibe and insides into the lives of people from the 18th and 19th century.
Try some traditional Bulgarian meals, enjoy the colours of the surrounding mountains, or admire the architecture of the Bulgarian Revival houses.
Want to go even further back in time?
There are also Thracian temples and burial sites, dating back to 6th century BC, in Bulgaria!
And if you’re tired of so many diverse sites, spoil yourself in one of the numerous hotels in Velingrad, the SPA capital of the Balkans.
October: Head To The Atlantic Coast Of Morocco
Now that autumn has started, it’s time for a dip in the Atlantic Ocean, hike in the Atlas Mountains, a night in the Sahara desert, or a visit to another of the countless fascinating places in Morocco.
While in summer the high temperatures cause water to evaporate and form a fog over the ocean, now that it’s not so hot, you’ll be able to see the Atlantic coast in all its beauty.
And if a few drops of rain happen to fall and the weather is not suitable for a beach walk, try to find your way to the nearest souk or kasbah. You’ll be immediately transformed into a 1001 nights fairy-tale decor. Please make sure you don’t get lost in the labyrinth of small alleys!
Find out how argan oil is produced or watch goldsmiths do their magic as they turn silver into incredible jewellery and decorations.
Try the delicious Moroccan dishes and enjoy the incredible colours of the goods at the market stalls. Don’t forget to haggle for your souvenirs as this is one of the most rewarding and authentic travel experiences. Smell the herbs and drink some green tea with fresh peppermint, also known as the Moroccan whiskey.
And if you’re looking for a way to challenge your body even more, try climbing the Atlas Mountains. It is one of the most mesmerising places you could ever visit.
November: Roam The National Parks Of Canada
What better reason to visit Canada, than its 150th birthday?
On this occasion, all National Parks will have free entrance!
Canada may not have a long history as a country, but is the home of 38 National Parks and 8 National Park Reserves. Explore waterfalls in Ontario, meet polar bears at Hudson Bay, or hike one of these jaw-dropping trails in Banff.
Don’t miss a visit to the Horseshoe of the Niagara Falls! Plan to stay after dark as well and enjoy the beautiful lights, which illuminate the waters. Check also these amazing things to do while visiting Niagara Falls and let me know which one was your favourite!
December: Work On Your Tan Before The Holidays In Mexico
Before the end of the year, dip your body one last time in the warm ocean waters near Mexico.
December is perfect for visiting one of the numerous beach resorts. Work on your tan before the holidays, increase your immune system defences before winter, and try to find Christmas decorations at unexpected places.
Travel to the incredible, vibrant Oaxaca and indulge in unique experiences.
Don’t miss a visit to at least one Mayan archaeological site in Yucatan and a dip into the cool, sweet waters of one of the numerous cenotes near Tulum and Playa del Carmen. Or go for a swim with whale sharks near Isla Mujeres or Isla Holbox.
Some of the Mayan pyramids such as Chichen Itza and Coba get a lot of visitors, so make sure to be there as early as possible to avoid the crowds. Other pyramids are still hidden deep in the jungle and you need to be quite adventurous to get there.
However, being alone, climbing the steps of the pyramid, and looking at the jungle around you from its top is worth it! My recommendation is to be adventurous and explore Mexico on a road trip.
Choose From These Travel Ideas And Start Your Next Adventure!
Next time you’re wondering where to head for an epic adventure and if it is the right season to visit your destination, you have a comprehensive list of travel ideas to guide you through.
So tell me, what are your plans for the upcoming months?
I know I’ll be going to Tajikistan in August, what about you? Where are you heading next?
Share your travel ideas in the comments and who knows, your wish might just come true!
Optimise your travels – connect better with the people you meet!
Do you know what the best way to immediately enhance your travel experience is?
Talking to the people you meet on the road!
Learn how to say “Hello!“, “Thank you!” and “Good bye!” in 36 languages.
Download the Traveller’s Free Phrasebook now.
This is such a great idea for a post! I love knowing when the best time of year to visit certain places is. I also love the idea of seeing the midnight sun so may have to pay Sweden a visit in July!
Hey Emily, Sweden in July was such a nice place to be! It was warm, but not hot as in Southern Europe and not as rainy as in Western Europe ;) I didn’t get a chance to see the midnight sun, as I wasn’t far enough North, but even in Stockholm and in Uppsala, where I stayed, it didn’t get dark at night.
I love this list! Some of these suggested locations were ones I had not thought of before. I love traveling with my family and knowing when to visit certain places is a HUGE help!
Not just the “where”, but also the “when” is very important for travelling :) Glad you liked the list.
I can absolutely agree with Venice in January, I even did that few years ago and it was a different city than the one I experienced in August earlier.
Thank you for the tropical paradise reminders – good ideas where to spend my birthday in March :-)
Oh, I hope you really do spend your birthday somewhere tropical! Yes, I was in Venice in January too and there was no sign of the crowds everyone complains about all the time :) I even got lost in several alleys with no single person around me :)
Love this article. In 2016, I DID go to DR and a secluded beach in June. So, in 2017, of course, I must do the other monthly adventures.
I was beach-hopping in the Dominican in June 2015 and it was fantastic :)
Great topic and suggestions. I love the idea of planning a big travel adventure every month. What a great way to spend a year!
Hey Julie, this would be awesome, right :)
Unfortunately, not so easy to accomplish, but at least we have enough travel ideas to pick from.
Great line-up of ideas… I need more time lol :)
Yep, I know what you mean – time’s never enough for all those travel ideas we have :)
Still, hope you’ll visit at least a couple of those any time soon!
I’ve narrowed it down to three. Costa Rica, Morocco and Cuba. Love the photo of the goats in the tree.
The goats were my favourite sight of Morocco for sure :) Cuba’s on my wish list too and Costa Rica is a place everyone should see! Hope your travel plans come through :)
the goats are a tourist trap. Locals tie the goats to the tree to attract tourists. Do not support this!
I disagree. When we were there, we were the only foreigners in miles. The goats were climbing up and down the trees freely.
then have a read here https://www.pinterest.dk/pin/73746512627298375/
These are such great locations and some are on my bucket list. And you’ve given me more ideas on what to do in these locations like Italy and Morocco.
Glad you found some travel inspiration in my post :) Happy travels!