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Top Vacation Ideas in July (Ultimate Guide)

By: Swena Kalra

Edited By: Scott Sidders

Updated on November 6, 2023

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July is the perfect time to plan a vacation! With warm temperatures and plenty of sunshine, this summer month can be the perfect backdrop for your dream vacation. But with so many amazing destinations in the world, how do you decide which one to choose?

In this ultimate guide to help choose a vacation during July, we will explore some of the best places and fun activities to try. From beautiful beaches and lush forests to historical towns and buzzing cities, we will give you all the information you need to pick your ideal destination.

1. Hiking in the Alps

Stunning landscape with Santa Maddalena village, Dolomites, Italy

Hiking in the Alps in July is a great way to enjoy the beauty of the mountains and experience some of Europe's most stunning views. The summer months are the best time to explore this region, as temperatures are milder and there are fewer crowds than in August.

The Italian Dolomites offer some of the best hiking opportunities in the Alps, with superb views, good facilities, easy-to-navigate paths, and excellent food. The Stubaier Höhenweg in Austria is also a popular route for hikers, leading past 8 huts and offering breathtaking views of glaciers and mountain peaks.
When planning your hike, it's important to be aware that weather conditions can change quickly at higher altitudes. It's always wise to check the forecast before setting out and make sure you have appropriate clothing and equipment with you. You should also be prepared for sudden changes in temperature – while summer days can be relatively warm at lower altitudes, temperatures can drop significantly overnight or during heavy rain or snowfall.

It's also important to plan your route carefully – make sure you know where you're going and how long it will take so that you don't get lost or run out of daylight before reaching your destination. If possible, try to hike with someone else who knows the area well – this will help ensure that you stay safe during your journey.


2. Lounging at a Beachfront Villa in the Caribbean

Beach Paradise in Barbados

Nothing beats the feeling of lounging in a beachfront villa in the Caribbean. With its crystal clear waters, white sand beaches, and stunning sunsets, it's no wonder why so many people flock to this region for their vacation. Whether you're looking for a romantic getaway or an adventure-filled family trip, there are plenty of beachfront villas to choose from.

From Jamaica to Barbados, you can find beachfront villas that offer breathtaking views of the ocean and provide all the amenities you need for a relaxing stay. Whether you want to indulge in luxury or keep things simple, there's something for everyone. Many of these villas come with private pools and outdoor entertainment areas where you can enjoy some quality time with your loved ones. You can also take advantage of the nearby restaurants and activities that make each destination unique.

If you're looking for a more secluded experience, there are plenty of beachfront villas tucked away on private islands throughout the Caribbean. These properties often feature lush gardens, spacious terraces, and spectacular views that will make your stay even more special. From Angra Villa 1 in Brazil to Hacienda Chekul in Costa Rica, these exclusive retreats offer an unforgettable experience that will leave you wanting more.

3. Exploring the Wonders of Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu at Sunrise

Exploring the wonders of Machu Picchu in July is a great way to experience the beauty and culture of Peru. Located high in the Andes Mountains, Machu Picchu is an ancient Incan city that has been preserved for centuries. With its majestic architecture, stunning views, and rich history, it's no wonder why this site is one of the most popular tourist destinations in South America.

When visiting Machu Picchu in July, travelers should be prepared for cold temperatures. During the day, temperatures range from 19°C/66°F to 10°C/50°F at night. Despite the cooler temperatures, July is still considered peak season due to its dry weather conditions and clear skies. This makes it an ideal time to explore the ruins without worrying about rain or mudslides.

In addition to exploring the ruins themselves, visitors can also take advantage of nearby attractions such as Huayna Picchu or Machu Picchu Mountain. These two peaks offer stunning views of both the ruins and the surrounding landscape. For those looking for a more adventurous experience, there are also plenty of hiking trails available for trekking through the area.

Travelers should also be aware that July is a busy time at Machu Picchu with crowds and costs increasing during this period. To avoid long lines and expensive tickets, it's best to book your trip early or plan your visit on a Sunday when locals are allowed free entry into the site.

4. Rafting Through Rapids of Costa Rica

Rafting in Costa Rica

Rafting through the rapids of Costa Rica in July is an adventure like no other. With its lush jungle and crystal clear rivers, it's easy to see why this Central American country is a popular destination for whitewater rafting. From the Pacuare River to the Balsa River, there are plenty of exciting rapids to explore.

The Pacuare River is one of the most popular spots for white water rafting in Costa Rica. With class III and IV rapids, it's perfect for those looking for a thrilling ride. The river runs through some of the most stunning scenery in the country, so you can take in all the beauty while you paddle your way downriver. If you're feeling brave, some class V rapids will give you an adrenaline rush!

The Balsa River is another great spot for whitewater rafting in Costa Rica. This river offers a variety of different levels of difficulty, from beginner-friendly class II rapids to more challenging class III and IV rapids. It's also home to some beautiful wildlife such as sloths, monkeys, and toucans. Plus, with its warm waters and stunning views, it's a great place to relax after a day on the river.

For those looking for something even more adventurous, Arenal Rafting offers guided tours on some of Costa Rica's wildest rivers. From overnight trips on the Reventazon River to full-day excursions on the Corobici River, they have something for everyone. And if you're feeling brave enough, they even offer extreme rafting trips with class V+ rapids!

5. Safari Adventure in Kenya

Tourists on safari game drive in Masai Mara, Kenya

With its dry and cool weather, July is one of the best times to go on a safari in Kenya. The Great Migration arrives in the Masai Mara during this time of year, offering unparalleled wildlife viewing opportunities.

The Masai Mara National Reserve is one of the most popular destinations for safaris in Kenya. It's home to some of Africa's most iconic animals, including lions, elephants, cheetahs, zebras, and wildebeests. During July, you can witness the incredible spectacle of the Great Migration as millions of wildebeests and other animals make their way across the plains.

Other great places to visit on a Kenyan safari include Amboseli National Park and Lake Nakuru National Park. Amboseli is known for its large elephant herds and stunning views of Mount Kilimanjaro while Lake Nakuru offers excellent birdwatching opportunities. No matter where you go on your Kenyan safari, you're sure to have an unforgettable experience!

When planning your Kenyan safari adventure for July, it's important to book your trip well in advance as this is a popular time for visitors from around the world. Make sure to research different tour companies so that you can find one that meets your needs and budget. You should also plan for any vaccinations or visas that may be required before entering Kenya.

6. Sailing Through the Greek Isles

Aerial view of Antipaxos island near Corfu, Greece with boats lined around the coastline.

Sailing through the Greek Isles in July is a great way to experience the beauty of Greece. The warm temperatures and sunny days make it an ideal time for sailing, and the Meltemi winds provide plenty of opportunities for exploration. With crystal clear waters, stunning views, and plenty of activities to enjoy, it's no wonder why so many people choose to sail through the Greek Isles in July.

The Cyclades Islands are one of the most popular destinations for sailing in Greece. This group of islands includes Mykonos, Santorini, Paros, Naxos, and more. These islands offer stunning views of the Aegean Sea as well as plenty of activities such as swimming and snorkeling. The Ionian Islands are also a great option for sailing in Greece. This group includes Corfu, Kefalonia, Lefkada, Zakynthos, Paxoi, and more. Here you can find beautiful beaches with crystal clear waters perfect for swimming or relaxing on a boat ride.

The Saronic Gulf is another popular destination for sailing in Greece during July. This area includes Aegina Island, Poros Island, Hydra Island, and more. It's known for its calm waters and stunning views which make it an ideal spot for sailing or exploring by boat. Finally, the Sporades Islands are also a great choice if you're looking to explore some of Greece's most beautiful islands while sailing around them in July. These include Skiathos Island, Skopelos Island, and Alonissos Island among others.

7. Biking Through Burgundy's Vineyards

Landscape view of a typical sunlit vineyard in Burgundy, France with Chateau Clos Du Vougeot

The lush green hills, the rolling fields of vines, and the warm summer air make it a perfect destination for cyclists looking to explore the region.

The best way to experience Burgundy's vineyards is by bike. Numerous routes take you through some of the most picturesque parts of the region. One popular route is the Route des Grands Crus, which takes you through some of Burgundy's most famous wine-growing areas. Along this route, you can visit some of Burgundy's most iconic wineries such as Château du Clos Vougeot, and sample some of their finest wines.

Another great option for biking in Burgundy is along the Canal du Centre. This canal runs from Dijon to Auxerre and offers a great opportunity to explore some of Burgundy's rural villages and towns. Along this route, you can stop at local markets or take a break at one of the many restaurants that line the canal banks.

8. Spotting Wildlife in Canada's National Parks

A male and a female bighorn sheep in Banff National Park

Canada's national parks are a great place to spot wildlife in July. With 37 national parks and 10 national park reserves, there is no shortage of places to explore and observe nature. From the rugged arctic wilderness of Auyuittuq on Baffin Island to the world-renowned Banff National Park, Canada has something for everyone.

July is an ideal time to visit because it is when many species of animals are at their most active. In the north, visitors can expect to see caribou, polar bears, Arctic foxes, and muskoxen. In the south, visitors can spot elk, moose, deer, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, and grizzly bears. Birdwatchers will be delighted by the variety of birds that inhabit Canada's national parks in July including bald eagles, ospreys, sandhill cranes, and peregrine falcons.

When visiting Canada's national parks in July it is important to remember that safety should always come first. Visitors should take precautions such as carrying bear spray or other deterrents if they plan on hiking or camping in areas where large animals may be present. It is also important to stay on designated trails and keep a respectful distance from any wildlife encountered during your visit.

Canada's national parks offer a unique opportunity for visitors to experience nature up close and personal while still respecting the environment and its inhabitants.

9. Exploring Waterfalls and Ancient Ruins Across Guatemala

waterfall at Cahabón River, Semuc Champey in Guatemala

Exploring Guatemala in July is an incredible experience. From the lush jungles to the ancient ruins, there is something for everyone. One of the most popular activities in Guatemala is exploring its many waterfalls. From the cascading turquoise pools and waterfalls of Semuc Champey to La Igualdad waterfall located in the eco-park in San Marcos, there are many breathtaking sites to see.

The Seven Altars Waterfall, located in Livingston, is one of the most impressive waterfalls in Guatemala. It's a great place to take a dip and enjoy some of the most stunning views of nature. The Chilascó Waterfall is another must-see destination and one of the largest waterfalls in Central America.

Temple number 1 in Tikal Guatemala

In addition to its beautiful waterfalls, Guatemala also has many ancient ruins that are worth exploring during your trip. Antigua and Guatemala City offer visitors a chance to explore their historic centers and learn more about Mayan culture. You can also visit Pacaya and Acatenango volcanoes or take a boat ride on Lake Atitlán or Río Dulce for an unforgettable experience.

No matter what you decide to do while visiting Guatemala, you're sure to have an amazing time exploring its natural beauty and rich history.

10. Hiking the Appalachian Trail in New England

Signs point the way to the summit of Mt Greylock, the tallest mountain in Massacusetts

Stretching over 2,200 miles from Maine to Georgia, the trail passes through five states in the region: Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. The most popular sections of the trail are located near Mount Katahdin in Maine and in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.

The Appalachian Trail offers a unique opportunity to explore the backcountry of the East Coast. Along with stunning views of forests and mountains, hikers can also experience a variety of wildlife and vegetation as they make their way along the trail. For those looking for a more challenging hike, there are several section hikes available that offer more difficult terrain and longer distances.

A red spruce tree grows at the summit of Mt Greylock, the highest peak in Massachusetts

For those who want to take on the entire trail at once, thru-hiking is an option. A typical thru-hiker can complete the trail in two to four weeks depending on their pace and fitness level. The trail is well-marked and easy to follow with plenty of rest stops along the way for hikers to take breaks or spend nights camping out under the stars.

In addition to hiking on the Appalachian Trail, there is also another option for exploring New England's backcountry - The New England Trail (NET). This National Scenic Trail runs from Long Island Sound in Connecticut up to New Hampshire's border with Canada and passes through both dense forests and major cities along its route.

11. Snorkeling with Sea Turtles in Mexico

Group of Green Sea Turtle in Caribbean Sea - Akumal Bay - Riviera Maya / Cozumel , Quintana Roo , Mexico

Every year, thousands of people flock to Akumal, a small town on the Yucatan Peninsula, to witness the beauty and majesty of these majestic creatures. During the summer months, from May to November, the waters around Akumal are teeming with sea turtles. This is when they come ashore to lay their eggs and can be seen swimming near the shoreline.

If you're looking for a unique snorkeling experience, then July is the perfect time to visit Akumal. The warm waters of the Caribbean Sea provide an ideal environment for snorkeling with sea turtles. You'll have plenty of opportunities to get up close and personal with these incredible animals as they swim around in search of food or just enjoy their natural habitat.

When you go snorkeling in Akumal, you'll also have a chance to explore some of its many cenotes (a natural sinkhole). These cenotes are filled with crystal-clear water and are home to a variety of fish and other aquatic life. It's an amazing sight to behold! Plus, if you're lucky enough, you may even spot some dolphins or manatees while you're out there.

The best way to ensure that your snorkeling experience is safe and enjoyable is by booking a tour with a reputable company that specializes in turtle tours. They will provide all the necessary equipment and guidance so that you can make the most out of your trip. Plus, they will be able to give you tips on how best to interact with the turtles while respecting their space.

Snorkeling with sea turtles in Mexico during July is an unforgettable experience that everyone should try at least once in their lifetime!

12. Diving around the Icebergs of Antarctica

Diver on the ice in Antarctica

The icy waters of the Southern Ocean provide a unique and thrilling polar diving experience, as one of the last remote areas of wilderness on earth. Divers get to take part in the remarkable beauty of the Antarctic landscape and witness some of its most incredible wildlife up close.

The best time to dive in Antarctica is during the summer months, from November to March when temperatures are warmer and visibility is at its peak. However, if you're looking for a truly unique experience, then consider diving into the icebergs in July. This is when you can find some of Antarctica's most spectacular sights – from towering glaciers to majestic icebergs – all within reach.

A group of three Adelie Penguins slides off of a blue ice berg in Antarctica

When diving into these icy waters, it's important to be prepared for cold-water conditions and have experience with drysuit diving. You'll also need to be aware that there are certain restrictions in place regarding where you can dive and how deep you can go. Divers must follow all safety protocols while exploring this incredible environment.

Once underwater, divers will be able to explore a variety of marine life including penguins, seals, whales, and more. There's also plenty of opportunity for photography as well as taking part in activities such as ice climbing or kayaking around icebergs.

13. Sunbathing on Mediterranean Shores in Croatia

people sunbathing on the shores of the walled city, Dubrovnik Croatia

Croatia is a beautiful country that has some of the best Mediterranean shores in the world. In July, these beaches are especially inviting for sunbathing. The warm temperatures and crystal clear waters make it an ideal spot for soaking up the sun and enjoying the beauty of nature.

The Mediterranean Sea is known for its calm waters and stunning views, making it a great spot to relax and enjoy some time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Sunbathing on these shores can be incredibly relaxing, with plenty of opportunities to take in the sights and sounds of nature. Whether you're looking to take a dip in the sea or just lounge around on the beach, there's something for everyone here.

The Croatian coastline offers plenty of options when it comes to sunbathing spots. From secluded coves to bustling beaches, there are plenty of places to choose from depending on your preferences. If you're looking for a more private experience, there are plenty of small bays where you can find peace while still enjoying all that Croatia has to offer. On the other hand, if you're looking for a more lively atmosphere, there are plenty of larger beaches with bars and restaurants nearby where you can soak up some rays while also enjoying some food and drinks with friends.

For July vacationers, the world is full of exciting opportunities. Whether you're looking for an active adventure or a relaxed beachside getaway, there are plenty of options to choose from. From snorkeling with turtles in Mexico to diving into the icy waters of Antarctica, the possibilities are endless! So start planning today and create some unforgettable memories in July.

We wish you all the best on your next trip, have fun, and take care!

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