Ultimate Summer Travel Bucket List 2024

Bell   |   13th April 2024

Summer is approaching rapidly and everyone is racing to get their holiday booked in. If you are still unsure of where to head in 2024, here are the top destinations this year as well as ideal trip dates, best activities and more.

Summer is when you are yearning to get out of the city and either on a beach or into nature, at least for me. There are many stunning destinations which are ideal to visit during the summer months, however I have collected the top ones for 2024.

Whether these places are up and coming or a bucketlist item you simply cannot miss, they will make for a once-in-a-lifetime summer holiday this year. 

Check out my ultimate summer travel list 2024 now:

Top Summer Holiday Destinations 2024

1. Saranda, Albania

Is Vlore, Albania Safe for travellers and tourists - header image

Albania is THE up and coming destination in 2024, so I cannot recommend enough to visit this summer. The country will not yet be overrun by tourists and prices are still on the lower end, contrary to so many of its counterparts. 

Here, you will find pristine beaches, delicious local food and stunning natural beauty. Whether you just want to lie on the beach or go exploring historic towns on a motorbike, Saranda has something for everyone. 

It is also just SO affordable, making it accessible to anyone.

Gjiri i Hartës beach-ksamil-albania-clear-blue-water-traveloffscript

Best travel dates: May or June for fewer crowds and more bearable temperatures

How long to stay: 3 days to a week are the perfect amount of time to enjoy the best Saranda has to offer.

Must-do activities: Blue Eye, Ksamil (Maldives of Europe), 40 Saints Monastery, Gjirokastra, Butrint National Park

My guide to Saranda, Albania, including things to do in Saranda, how to get there, why it is perfect on a budget and some tips for solo, female travellers.

2. The Great Migration, Tanzania

Photo by Jorge Tung on Unsplash

The Great Migration is one of my top bucket list places and should be on any nature and wildlife enthusiast’s late summer travel list. Over millions of animals, including 2mil wildebeest, migrate across the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem every year.

Arguably the most impressive moments are the Grumeti and Mara River crossings, where animals are forced to cross in small spots through crocodile-infested waters. I

Exact timings depend on the rain each year, so make sure to check in with your guides if you have some flexibility. The guides are key to your success during this adventure – they can read wildlife like no other and know the Great Migration inside out!

Best travel dates: June – August to witness the river crossings, for exact timings talk to local guides

How long to stay: at least 14 days

Must-do activities: Safari with experienced guides, Hot Air Balloon ride

3. Porto and Costa de Prata, Portugal

Porto gaia viewpoint

Porto and its surrounding region is still an underrated travel destination when it comes to “Europe Summer”. Porto itself is beautiful, the locals are so friendly and the food is incredible (also make sure to check out the Port wine).

You can then head down the coast to go surfing, visit beautiful cities such as Aveiro and even stop by Nazare and its world-record waves and pro-surfing. 

Transport links via bus and train are excellent in Portugal, the beaches are pristine and it is still pretty affordable. The perfect 2024 summer destination!

Nazaré's giant waves

Best travel dates: May to August

How long to stay: 3 days for the city only, at least a week to head down the coast and do some surfing

Must-do activities: Surfing, Nazaré’s mega waves, Fado show, Aveiro, Douro Wine region

Check out my full Portugal guides for more inspiration and information. 

4. Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

Salt flats bolivia
Photo by Karla Robinson on Unsplash

Salar de Uyuni is located in southwest Bolivia and holds the record for the World’s Largest Salt Flat, spanning an area of roughly 9,500–10,000 square km. During the rainy season, December-April, the salt flats turn into one huge “mirror”, an effect unlike anything you’ve ever seen.  Unfortunately, the weather is unpredictable during this period, meaning the salt flats and surrounding attractions may not always be accessible.

From May onwards, the dry season begins. You will be able to see the stunning crystallised salt patterns and the sheer vastness of the salt flats. 

It’s worth extending your trip to see more of Bolivia, including the Amazon Rainforest, flamingoes at Laguna Colorada, Lake Titicaca and the ruined city of Tiwanaku.

Best travel dates:  May to October

How long to stay: 2-3 days, though I’d recommend at least 1 week to see more of Bolivia

Must-do activities: Take a tour of the salt flats, Amazon Rainforest, Laguna Colorada, Lake Titicaca, Tiwanaku, La Paz

5. Borneo: Orangutans and Turtles

For Borneo, you can visit either the Malaysian or Indonesian part. The Malaysian area of Sabah is often recommended as it is more accessible, whereas the Indonesian part is known for its exotic and rich wildlife. 

The Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in the small town of Sepilok is one of the best places to spot Orangutans and learn more about the animal and its habitats. 

Sabah also has Turtle Island Park, made up of 3 islands. The largest island, Selingan, is open to tourists and you can spot green turtles and hawksbill turtles. Rangers will inform you if there are turtle landings and guide you through the night. 

Borneo’s dry season lasts from March to October and is the best time to spot wildlife. It is also a great time for beach visits!


Best travel dates: March to October

How long to stay: ~2 weeks

Must-do activities: Turtle Island Park, Mount Kinabalu, Klias Wetlands, Orangutan Sanctuary, Kinabatangan River, Sun Bear Conservation Centre, steam railway

6. Tofino, Canada

Tofino Harbour Canada summer bucketlist - traveloffscript

Tofino is genuinely one of the most beautiful and relaxed places I have ever visited. It has fantastic surf spots, lots of hikes and other nature activities, delicious food and incredible wildlife viewing opportunities such as whales and bears. I also experienced my top favourite sunsets ever there!

March to October is also whale-watching season and Tofino is one of the best places in Canada to spot the gentle giants.

Temperatures peak around July/August, but I visited in April and the weather was already beautifully sunny. Just make sure to get a good wetsuit if you are going surfing, as the water is pretty icy. 

Tofino beach - traveloffscript

Best travel dates: July, August and even September

How long to stay: 3 days to 1 week (warning: you will want to stay longer though)

Must-do activities: Surfing, Hikes, Whale watching, wildlife tours, scenic flights

7. Lofoten, Norway

Lofoten, Norway
Photo by grace sungura on Unsplash

Visiting Northern Norway during summer is a pretty unique experience as the sun never sets – this is referred to as the midnight sun. In Lofoten, you can experience this phenomenon from late May to mid-July

Lofoten is probably most well-known for its hikes with breathtaking views over the Islands. They range from beginner to expert, but no matter how short or easy, you are guaranteed views for days!

The Islands also offer lots of water sports, cruises and local food to enjoy during the long days. 


Best travel dates: July, August (though it will be beautiful all throughout summer)

How long to stay: 4-5 days

Must-do activities: Hiking, Sea Cruise, Water Sports

8. Galapagos Islands

While the Galapagos Islands are incredible year-round, summer is the perfect time for marine wildlife spotting. Summer is considered “cool” and dry season, though average temperatures are still a cosy 26 degrees Celsius.

I have outlined the best months by activity below – highlights are August to spot sea lion babies and June onwards for whale sightings.

Summer is overall a good season to witness different species hatching and see marine wildlife at its peak activity. 


Galapagos islands snorkelling
Photo by Marcela Baca on Unsplash

Best travel dates: April-May for turtles and snorkelling, June-July for whale spotting, August-October for sea lion pupping season 

How long to stay: at least 5 days

Must-do activities: Whale safari, giant tortoises, San Cristobal harbour, Marine iguanas, snorkelling, Wall of Tears

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Hi, I'm Bell

Bell from Travel Off Script

My blog is here to show you that there isn’t one correct way to travel the world. Together, we can figure out what that means for you. Learn more about me here!

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