Summer Destinations for Winter Nights

Summer Destinations For Winter Nights (+ Giveaway)

I don’t know about you, but I’m not a fan of cold weather. Thinking that there are three months ahead of snow and below-zero temperatures makes me want to go to sleep and set my alarm for spring. So instead of doing that, I started reminiscing about all the beautiful summer destinations I’ve visited. I could’ve gone on and on about how picture-perfect Malta is or how stunning the beaches in Portugal are, but I decided it would be more interesting to ask eight great travel bloggers about their favorite summer destinations. But before we get to their answers, I’d like to say that it’s the second anniversary of this little blog, so to thank you all for reading my posts, I have a very special giveaway at the end of the post. 😉

Fortim, Ceara, Brazil by Packing My Suitcase

Warm destination for winter: Fortim, Ceará, Brazil

This beach is near Fortaleza, my hometown, located north of Brazil. I had so many opportunities to visit it while I was still living there, but only recently I got the chance to set my feet on this surprisingly secluded beach. I was impressed by how amazing it is, and happy by the fact that it is still so empty while its neighbour beaches are so explored. Here it’s possible to take a boat ride and the most interesting fact about it, is that it is where the river meets the sea. It is a great place for lying on the sand, for swimming, and for photography. Sunny all-year long and quiet, I couldn’t recommend this place more. There are only a few hotels/guesthouses nearby, and most visitors are the locals or the owners of beach houses in town. A paradisiac paradise!

To read more about Allane’s adventures check out her blog or her Instagram page.

Zadar, Croatia by Eat Sleep Breathe Travel

Warm destination: Zadar Croatia by Eat Sleep Breathe Travel

One of the most underrated destinations on Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, Zadar makes the perfect getaway. Like other coastal creation towns, Zadar features an old town and beautiful beaches on the sea; perfect for hot summer days. What makes it more attractive than the more popular cities of Split and Dubrovnik is that it lacks the crowds. Being further north, Zadar isn’t on the main cruise trail and also doesn’t attract the same number of backpackers as the other cities as well. Personally, I found that this made the prices cheaper, the service better, and the people friendlier. Aside from the city itself being beautiful and fun to enjoy, Zadar is a perfect spot for day trips and exploring some of Croatia’s best sights. Plitvice National Park is only a couple hours away by local bus, as is Krka Waterfalls which you can actually swim in. There are also day trips to the islands, or water sports available as well. Whether you are looking for a few lazy days on the beach, some historical city-exploring, or outdoor adventures, Zadar has a lot to offer any traveller.

To read more about Hannah’s adventures check out her blog or her Instagram page.

Sao Miguel Island, The Azores by Travelling Weasels

Warm destination: Sao Miguel Island, The Azores

One of our favourite places that we visited this summer was Sao Miguel Island in the Azores. The Azores archipelago is actually Portuguese, but is located very far away from the mainland in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. We love it because it is ripe with delicious foods, geographical wonders and landscape is straight out of Jurassic Park. We hitch-hiked for the first time ever here, bathed in natural hot springs and even saw wild dolphins and whales! It’s unlike anywhere else we’ve been in Europe and we highly recommend it. Regardless of whether you want excitement or relaxation, the Azores are the place for you, especially if you love nature.

To read more about the adventures of Tanbay and Laura check out their blog or their Instagram page.

Riviera Maya by As We Saw It

Warm destination: Riviera Maya, Mexico

Partygoers and sun worshippers may like Mexico’s Cancun and Cozumel but we prefer nearby Riviera Maya. It is far less crowded and far more interesting because although it shares the same great climate, white sand beaches and azure Caribbean waters, it also has so much more:

Mayan heritage – The coast along the Riviera Maya was once a center of Mayan life and the area is full of Mayan ruins and archaeological sites. While Chichen Itza is a UNESCO site and is the best-known, Tulum and Coba are smaller and have trees for shade – plus it’s even possible to climb a pyramid in Coba!

Snorkeling and diving – Both snorkeling and diving are spectacular here because the second-largest reef in the world lies just offshore. The water is pristine, the wildlife is diverse and the visibility is amazing.

Mexican culture – You’ll have to drive inland to visit but we think it’s worth it. Valladolid is a typical Mexican town, with all the quaint Spanish-Mexican architecture you might expect. It’s fun to explore the shops in its central square and perfect for people watching. Also, the local restaurants serve authentic dishes because their clientele is local.

To read more about the adventures of Dan and Linda check out their blog or their Facebook page.

Antibes, South of France by On The Luce

Warm destination: Antibes, France by On The Luce

Think of the Côte d’Azur and you probably picture celebrities drinking Champagne on their superyachts or millionaires in Ferraris hitting the casinos of Monte Carlo. But there’s a whole different side to the blue coast in the town of Antibes. In between a series of pretty golden-sand coves you come across a 16th-century historic walled town. With its red roofs and waves crashing against the ramparts you could easily think you were in Dubrovnik. But inside the walls it’s obvious you’re in France, with pavement cafés tucked away down side streets and a Provençal market piled up with cheeses, olives and charcuterie. There’s an arty feel too with modern sculpture on the city walls and a Picasso museum in a house he once lived in. Outside the city in Port Vauban there are over 1800 boats, where you can do a bit of fantasy yacht window shopping along Billionaires’ Quay. The town has a train station so you can travel all along the Côte d’Azur and visit places like Nice, Saint Tropez and Monaco – but for me Antibes is where the Côte d’Azur keeps its heart, rather than it’s bank balance.

To read more about Lucy’s adventures check out her blog or her Instagram page.

French Alps by Wander Mum

Warm destination: French Alps

It’s not known as a typical summer destination but visiting the French Alps in the warmer months is quickly becoming one of my favourite places in which to get away from it all. The quiet serenity which hits you when you arrive is a welcome change, particularly for me, living in London. Waking up on a morning you may hear some cow bells ringing, streams flowing, cockerel’s crowing or a dog barking in the distance – but that is about it. With such tranquillity it is easy to relax but don’t assume that means there is nothing to do. Although there is no beach – or sea – there are plenty of lakes and miles and miles of lush, green mountains. Scenery which makes you instantly relax and for those wanting to get out in it, plenty of hiking and mountain bike trails to explore. Other activities – suitable for all the family – include horse riding, swimming, road biking and white water rafting. At your disposal are Medieval towns, lakeside restaurants and quaint villages and, to wash it down, there’s no shortage of fine French food, local cheese, wine and, of course, champagne! Visiting the Alps in summer offers a different scene and vibe than the cold, winter months.

To read more about Elizabeth’s adventures check out her blog or her Instagram page.

Melbourne, Australia by Who Needs Maps

Warm destination: Melbourne, Australia

I love beachy and hot destinations when it’s Christmas. So while it gets cold on this side of the equator, my favorite place to spend my winters are in the Australian summer in Melbourne. After living there for over a year, Melbourne quickly became a second home and one of my favorite cities in the world. Poached egg breakfast, great coffee, the street art, hidden lane ways, night clubs, night markets, rooftop bars, chicken parmas, classy goon and passion pop drunk nights, and AFL footy at the MCG, Melbourne has quickly stolen my heart to being one of the best warm destinations! With just an hours drive, you can see the Great Ocean Road, Surf in Torquey, and visit the penguin parade in Phillip Island. The vibe is truly something special and you just know you will fall in love with Melbourne the minute you get there.

To read more about the adventures of Jack and Jenn check out their blog or their Facebook page.

Mallorca by Continental Breakfast Travel

Warm destination: Mallorca by Continental Breakfast Travel

Mallorca gets a bad rep in Northern Europe. Whether it’s bolshy Brits in Magaluf or drunk Germans in Ballerman, the island’s party-hard sun-seekers seem to be what it’s best known for. Yet on my visit, I found a Mallorca I wasn’t expecting. The first thing I discovered was that Mallorca is huge – driving across the island you’ll find not only villages but towns and medium-sized cities dotted along the route. What’s more, some of the secluded beaches in the north take hours of driving along mountain roads to get to. The other surprise was that Mallorca is hugely diverse. Aside from the classic sandy beaches close to resorts, you can easily find sheltered coves and hidden shores dotted around the island. Not only that, but Mallorca is home to a huge mountain range, natural caves, traditional villages like Sóller and Valldemossa and the thriving city of Palma, which is well worth a day of exploration (and shopping).

To read more about John’s adventures check out his blog or his Instagram page.

Giveaway

For my second blog anniversary, I’ve teamed up with Marco Polo to offer you five of their brand new Spiral Guides, perfect for planning your next summer trip. I always use a Marco Polo guide while planning a trip because not only are they full of great information and helpful tips, they also feature some gorgeous photos! You can win any guide in their collection by commenting on this post and saying what’s your favorite summer destination. Bonus points if you share on Instagram a photo from that location 😉 (make sure you mention me @effitimonholiday so I can see it). The competition is open worldwide and closes on December 11th. Good luck!

What is your favorite summer destination?

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  • Soooo awesome!! Loved it!!
    First of all, congratulations, 2 years is a lot of work! So happy we got to meet each other online (for now).
    Second, loved all the destinations here, so many of them I haven’t visited yet, São Miguel and Zadar are certainly on top of my list 😀
    Also the pictures are all amazing!

    As for the giveaway, I’m not sure if can take part, but I will do it anyways 😀 My favourite summer destination is anywhere in Croatia! I love that country, and the beaches are amazing!

    Happy Blogversary Vlad! 😀

    • Thank you, Allane! I hope we can soon meet in real life as well soon! Zadar is at the top of my list too, I’m dying to go to Croatia. It sucks it’s so inconvenient to get there from Romania (a very long drive or many connecting flights) 🙁

      You can definitely take part in the giveaway btw 😉

      • Ohh I know, you told me about it before! I hope soon you there will be a good way of getting there, because it’s totally worth it!
        Yaaaay awesome! 😀

  • My God, the destinations enlisted here are out of this World! They all look so awesome!
    Congrats again for two great years of blogging, I am very happy to be a reader of your posts, so keep up the amazing work!

    I hope Allane won’t mind if I choose Croatia as well for my favorite summer travel destination, because I just can’t get enough of it! (Let’s see if after Portugal next year I’ll feel the same, haha!)

    • I hope I haven’t outsold Portugal and it won’t disappoint you when you go there, haha. It’s a very beautiful country and hope you’ll love it just as much as I do 😀

  • John Pilkington

    I think my favourite summer destination has to be… Wales! It’s a bit boring I know, but we always spent a lot of time there over summer when I was growing up.

    This is a great list though – the perfect thing to warm my cockles!

    • Why should it be boring, I’d love to go to Wales! 😀

  • Lucy Dodsworth

    Some great idea here – the Azores are high on my list now – thanks for including me and big congrats on your blog anniversary. My favourite summer destination of all time has to be Italy, there’s such a huge diversity of places to see, and the food and wine is amazing!

    • The Azores are very high on my list too, saw some very tempting flights! Next year I’ll make up for lost time and go twice to Italy, exploring four different areas. I’m sure I’ll love it too 😀

  • Maybe not a traditional summer holiday destination but I love the Scottish Highlands and Islands. We holidayed on Eigg this year and it wss gorgeous.

    • The Scottish Highlands are high on my list, I keep seeing pictures and it’s absolutely gorgeous out there. 😀

  • samiyahl

    Would love to visit all these places, not a big fan of the cold! headed to Melbourne next March, that should be great! Azores looks gorgeous too! My favourite summer destination would have to be Italy, been there so many times and can always go back for more 🙂

    • I’m going to Italy next year for the first (and second!) time and I couldn’t be more excited! What are your favorite places in Italy?

  • Megan Claire

    Nice list! I hate the cold too, though thankfully there are quite a number of places which are warm all year round. If you’re looking for a vacation during winter which lets you escape the cold, definitely think about places like Florida, Australia’s WhitSundays, Mexico, and Sri Lanka. Even their winters are warm!

    • Sri Lanka sounds awesome, I’ve never been but I’m definitely curious about it.

  • I would say that Hawaii is my fav far away summer place and Cape Cod my fav close one. It helps that I can drive just 10 minutes to the beach, but being in Hawaii was pretty flipping amazing. I have no idea how to link to instagram, but I’m faegirl over there 😉

    • Cool photo, I’d love to visit Hawaii one day 😀

  • Elaine J Masters

    I love this post! Like most of your contributors I relish most the off-the-beaten-path spots that reflect the culture and not just the tourism. Following you on Insta too. My favorite summer destination – Someplace that’s not too steamy hot, with a nearby reef teeming with fish and a good dive shop – perhaps Beqa Island or Kadavu, Fiji.

    • Kadavu looks like an awesome place to visit 🙂

  • Carly

    I used to think I hate the cold, but now I live in Australia I realise that I hate living in the cold, but am more than happy to visit cold places for holidays – I love the snow, especially at Christmas time!! My favourite beaches for a sunny getaway have to be close to my hometown of Perth, all of the West coast of Australia has amazing and quiet beaches.

    • I only like snow during Christmas – and we never get that, it always snows after the holidays are over 🙁

  • I’ve spent Christmas in the tropics for all of my life so now that I’ve had the chance to spend 2 Christmas seasons now in a colder place, it’s quite hard to pick one from the other. But sure enough, when the temperature gets crazy low, a part of me badly wants to rush to a more ‘summer-y’ destination haha!

    • I like snowy Christmases, but that’s as much as I can bear the cold. If I could choose to have only two weeks of snow per year, I’d do it, haha

  • Mags

    I’ve just added some new places to my list! I live in Florida so I get summer weather almost all the time. I’ve actually spent the last few summers traveling to Scandinavia.

    • I traveled to Scandinavia this summer and last summer as well – beautiful countries!

  • These places and pictures are amazing, reminds me of all the places I haven’t been yet! My favorite summer destination is going to be the Greek Islands, particularly Samos or Santorini.

    • I’d love to visit the Greek Islands soon. Didn’t know about Samos so thanks for the recommendation 🙂

  • I don’t like cold weather either, Vlad, but I am blessed to live in a place where I don’t have to deal with that. I’ve been at the Riviera Maya and in Antibes, but the rest of the destinations on your list are new to me. I’d love to visit each one of them at some point, especially Croatia.

    • I really want to go to Croatia as well, it seems like such a beautiful country! I’d definitely like to visit you one day, haha.

  • Ooh, fun!! My husband and me are heading to Marrakech this December, can’t wait to see how it is to spend Christmas there.

    • Morocco is high on my wish list, hope you have a great time in Marrakesh! 😀

  • Richard

    Some great places there, I think I’d have to go for the Greek Islands.

    • I’d love to visit the Greek Islands – which one is your favorite?

      • Richard

        I’ve not been to enough but really liked the ones I’ve been to. Anywhere in the Ionian Sea would be a good start. I’d like to get to Ithaca one day.

  • Glad to see the destinations are not the ‘usual suspects’ – some interesting choices. Congrats on your blog birthday 🙂

  • Great stuff Vlad and congrats on your blog’s second anniversary! We would highly recommend Iceland as the summer destination (particularly if you make it for the midnight sun). We spent nine days road-tripping the island and were in awe throughout our time 🙂

    • Thank you! Iceland is my number 1 dream destination and I’m actually hoping to visit next year, in late-august 🙂

      • Awesome! We got some detailed stuff on our blogs for Iceland, hope it helps! Would highly recommend staying at Kex when in Reykjavik 🙂

        • Thanks, I’ll check out your posts 😀

  • Miranda P

    Tofino, B.C., Canada – small(ish) waves for newbie surfers, local hot springs and rainforests everywhere.

    • Sounds like a great destination!

  • Great list! I definitely prefer warmer weather too and will be reminiscing this winter. Congratulations on your blogs birthday 🙂 and cheers to another amazing year!

    • Thank you! 🙂

  • Croatian coast, of course! (And not just because it’s my home country:))
    I love all of Istria, and would recommend the islands of Cres and Vis anytime, because they’re simply amazing! Clean sea, warm days, great food, lovely towns. And two of the most beautiful beaches (St.Ivan below Lubenice on Cres and Stiniva on Vis) are also there.
    And since I don’t want to sound like a promotional slogan of Croatian tourist board, I think Italy is also a great summer destination. I especially enjoyed Sicily, and the Gargano Peninsula in Puglia- the sea is so warm there that I’d swim (and float) for hours 🙂
    I know I’m 5 months late with this comment, but I wanted to join the discussion!
    Cheers