This handy book provides expert advice, activity ideas and inspiring photos on the best places to holiday every month. Experts present trip ideas for everyone, whether you’re a fan of adventure, culture, history, nature, sightseeing and wildlife; and the 12-month calendar of suggestions helps travellers to avoid the crowds and get the most out of their chosen destination.
Lonely Planet’s Where to go When, the ultimate trip planner for every month of the year, is a beautifully illustrated book that is both practical and inspiring. For every month of the year it presents 30 recommendations of destinations that are at their best during each month, whether due to their climate, or value, or simply because there’s a lot going on.
The suggestions feature every flavour of travel experience, from culture-rich city breaks and tropical beach holidays to adventurous road trips and wildlife-watching expeditions. Every corner of the planet is covered so you’ll find out when the best time to see mountain gorillas is or to go shopping in Paris.
The book is organised by month. At the start of each chapter a flowchart guides you through the options so readers can filter the recommendations according to their interests. Whether you’re into beaches, trying the local specialities or backpacking off the beaten path, there will suggestions for you. Diagrams also depict the climate, value for money and family friendliness of each suggestion in the month.
Read on for some of the monthly highlights. (Photos courtesy of Mail Online)
What a way to start the year: Visit Dove Lake, which was formed by glaciation in Tasmania. Behind it sits Cradle Mountain
The destinations that Lonely Planet recommends travellers head to in January include Uganda, Florida, Lanzarote, Switzerland, Sydney, Slovenia, Kerala in India, Grenada, Honshu in Japan, Guatemala and the Arctic Peninsula.
This month is also the time for nature fans to visit the southern Serengeti in Tanzania to watch thousands of grazing wildebeest or to explore the empty beaches and nature trails in full bloom in Australia’s Tasmania.
Other highlights this month include the Hay literary festival in Colombia, cruising through Myanmar under a balmy sun and taking in Vienna’s glamorous winter balls.
Follow in Santa’s sleigh trails: A visit to Finnish lapland in February is the perfect time to see the spectacular aurora borealis
For February, Ibiza, the Gambia, Michoacan in Mexico, the Indian Ocean, Cambodia, Singapore, Haiti, Venice and Quebec are among the top picks.
Lonely Planet also encourages travellers to embrace the chill in Iceland, Lapland and Andorra this month as conditions are ideal for hiking, skiing and to see the Northern Lights.
The weather, meanwhile, is glorious in Honduras, which offers affordable diving. And it’s carnival season in Rio de Janeiro – and the bodegas of Mendoza, Argentina, are open with enticing wine tours and tastings.
First splash of spring: Unwind in Tobago at the dreamy Pigeon Point Beach where even the palm trees are laid back
Sicily, Cyprus, South Africa, Tyrol in Austria, the Maldives, Chile, Costa Rica, Banff in Canada, Savannah in the US, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Trinidad and Tobago are among the most desirable destinations for March travellers.
Other picks include watching grey whales migrating off the coast of Baja California, Mexico, spotting Shere Khan big cats in Madhya Pradesh, India, or encountering Sichuan pandas in China during this month.
Creative event South by South West (SXSW), meanwhile, will add a crackling energy to Austin, US, in March and Iguazu Falls straddling Brazil and Argentina will be even more jaw-dropping than usual as the waterfall is in full flow at this time of year.
A spicy spring escape: Sun, sand and sea await discovery at Thailand’s tropical beaches overlooking the Andaman Sea
For April escapes, the travel experts suggest Panama, the Phillippines, Hawke’s Bay in New Zealand, the Alps, the Lake District, Belize, Melbourne, Brussels, Nepal, St Lucia and Andalusia in Spain.
Cultured travellers can explore Jordan’s ancient attractions while camping in the desert at this mild time of year. It’s also an inspiring time to see the colourful flowers of sakura (cherry blossom) season in Japan.
Spring is also ideal for driving along California’s breath-taking, traffic-free coastal roads and to feel the heat on a thrilling beach break in Thailand during the nation’s new year celebrations, Lonely Planet says.
A nature lover’s paradise, Montenegro has rivers, seas and slopes, ripe for exploration in mild May
May is an idyllic month for shoulder season travel with the Lonely Planet experts selecting Bermuda, Samoa, Morocco, Peru, Cornwall, North Island in New Zealand, Loire Valley in France, Israel, Prague, Cuba, Southern Namibia and the Amalfi coast in Italy as top picks.
The guide book has other picks for this month, too. A nature lover’s paradise, Montenegro has rivers, seas and slopes, ripe for exploration in mild May, while it’s also a good time to take advantage of the deserted beaches in Spain’s Galicia region before the other tourists arrive.
Other highlights of the month include hiking Ihlara Valley in Cappadocia, Turkey, sailing the fjords on the west coast of Norway and hitting the roads of northern Queensland for a picturesque tour.
Shutterbugs can make the most of the long summer days in Orkney, Scotland, and spend the summer solstice on the island
Trip suggestions for June include Greenland, Jamaica, Iran, Sardinia, Cape Cod, Lisbon, Yosemite National Park, Bora Bora, the Canadian Rockies, South Luangwa National Park in Zambia and Rwanda.
And this month’s family friendly options include riding horses at Montana’s ranches, snorkelling at Ningaloo Reef in Australia and watching the turtles hatch in Borneo.
Shutterbugs, meanwhile, can make the most of the long summer days in Orkney and spend the summer solstice among the Scottish island’s historic attractions, while cultured holidaymakers can take in the Opera Festival in Verona this month.
Brazil’s Pantanal wetland experiences its dry season during this month making it an ideal time to see an array of colourful animals, from toucans and macaws to elusive jaguars
Ever fancied visiting Mongolia, the Baltic, Alaska, Japan, Zanzibar, the Himalayas, the Azores, Antigua or the Black Forest in Germany? Then July is the month to pencil it in.
And Brazil’s Pantanal wetland experiences its dry season during this month, making it an ideal time to see an array of colourful animals, from toucans and macaws to elusive jaguars.
It’s also a delightful month to explore the mountains of the Dolomites and during Australia’s winter you can take a cosy, wine-filled trip to Hunter Valley, travel the wild Atlantic way in Ireland or head for the beaches of the Ionian islands.
August is a gorgeous time to discover Umbria in Italy’s rolling landscapes, medieval walled towns and rural retreats
Mid-summer options recommended by the Lonely Planet experts include Iceland, Zambia, Malawi, Sofia in Bulgaria, Ko Samui in Thailand, Berlin, Nova Scotia in Canada, Sweden, Ecuador, Champagne in France, Turkey and Papua New Guinea.
August is also a gorgeous time to discover the rolling landscapes, medieval walled towns and rural retreats of Umbria in Italy. Buenos Aires, meanwhile, is hosting its arts festival and the Cook Islands are looking their dreamy best this month.
And adventurous families should head to Pembrokeshire in Wales for surfing, cycling and mountaineering or go on a road trip around the Kimberly in Australia.
You can avoid the crowds by travelling in shoulder season where you’ll find deserted beaches in a sun-drenched Corsica
The Silk Road in central Asia, Costa Brava, Tibet, Georgia, South Korea, the Cotswolds, South Africa, Provence, Arizona, Vermont and Sumatra and Java in Indonesia are all best enjoyed in September.
There are other great options, too. You’ll find deserted beaches in a sun-drenched Corsica and can take a moment to appreciate the autumn foliage brightening up Beijing and the Great Wall of China. There’s also often an Indian Summer to make the most of in hazy San Francisco.
And it’s a thrilling month to go rafting in New Zealand, hiking in Mont Blanc, on safari in northern Kenya, or cruising around the Moselle Valley in Germany.
With Vietnam experiencing monsoon seasons in both the winter and the summer, October has the perfect conditions for a stunning escape to highlights such as Halong Bay (pictured)
Top picks for October travel itineraries include Fiji, the Seychelles, Slovakia, Lyon, Bolivia, Costa Verde in Brazil, New Mexico, the Scottish Highlands, New York and Taiwan.
And with Vietnam experiencing monsoon seasons in both the winter and the summer, October has the perfect conditions for a stunning escape to highlights such as Halong Bay.
During this month ‘clear mountain views’ can be enjoyed on visits to Darjeeling in India and Bhutan and Lonely Planet also recommends Oman as it is blessed with ‘mellow weather’ and ‘a taste of old Arabia’.
Sun-seekers should make a break for Barbados (pictured), Puerto Rico and the British Virgin Islands in the tail end of the year before the crowds arrive
Nicaragua, the Cayman Islands, the Simien mountains in Ethiopia, Costa Rica, Tokyo and Honshu, South Africa, Oregon, Nepal, Dunedin in New Zealand, Ruka in Finland and Hong Kong are attractive vacation destinations for November.
Sun-seekers, meanwhile, should make a break for Barbados, Puerto Rico and the British Virgin Islands in the tail end of the year before the other beach bums arrive.
And November is a temperate time to explore Rajasthan and the Golden Triangle and it’s cool enough to climb the Mayan ruins at Ruta May in Guatemala. Abu Dhabi might also be an option if you’re into Formula One or want to explore the new crop of museums opening there, which include the Louvre and the Guggenheim.
If you want to start the new year on a natural high head for Southern Patagonia, Chile, at the ends of the Earth where the vast landscapes are a hiking paradise
Why not spend Christmas overseas? Lonely Planet recommends St Vincent and the Grenadines, Australia’s Sapphire coast, the Andaman Islands, Laos, Senegal, San Sebastian, Micronesia and Tenerife in December.
And this month need not be dreary as there are winter wonderlands to discover in Arctic Sweden, Jasper in Canada, Breckenridge in the US or on the Glacier Express in Switzerland.
Fans of winter markets will be enthralled with Tallin in Estonia’s offerings, and Scotland and New Orleans are top destinations for a lively New Years’ Eve. Or if you want to start the new year on a natural high head for Morocco’s stunning Sahara desert or Southern Patagonia, Chile, at the ends of the Earth. These vast landscapes are a hiking paradise.
ISBN: 9781786571939 Language: English
Authors: Sarah Baxter, Paul Bloomfeild
320 pages, 320 pp colour | Dimensions: 230mm x 270mm
Next edition due: Dec 2020