Save & Avoid the Crowds With These Shoulder Season Destinations
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No matter the time of year, a vacation is a vital part of living well. However, finding the time, the money, or just the patience to travel can present a struggle all on its own. So how can you get away while dodging noisy crowds and saving some cash? Travel during the shoulder season! Known as the sweet spot between the peak and off-peak seasons, the shoulder season vacation is perfect for the traveller who wants to experience a new place without breaking the bank. Here are a few spots to put on your travel radar when planning your next trip.
There’s never a bad time to visit Europe, but in early spring, this enchanting country sees less crowds, better weather, and more local living. From perusing the Louvre to gazing at the Leaning Tower of Pisa, to watching the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace, the lines and the crowds in many European cities shrink, giving you more breathing room to experience the most iconic sites. This is the time to immerse yourself in local culture alongside people who call charming European cities “home.”
For Australians, March to May is known as the autumn season. With milder temperatures, the weather is ideal for a beach day on the Gold Coast or an afternoon exploring cities like Perth or Adelaide. If you’ve always wanted to experience the arid, sienna-hued landscapes of the Australian Outback, the fall season in Australia is a great time to visit. From Ayers Rock to Alice Springs, you’ll be able to explore it all in a comfortable heat that hovers around 26 degrees Celsius.
If you’re already in the South Pacific, why not make your way over to Kiwi country? From the ethereal beauty of the glacial fjords on South Island to the aquamarine waters of the Milford Sound, March and April are great months to visit New Zealand. And, for all self-proclaimed oenophiles, March especially is a great time for touring the world-renowned vineyards to sample delicious wine.
Rio De Janeiro
After the whir of excitement and energy of Carnival passes, early March is a great time to experience the vibrancy and heritage of Brazil’s capital city. While you may experience a bit of rain, the city’s landmark sites, gorgeous beaches and bustling cafes and restaurants are all still ready to welcome you.
Come April, the strong waves of the Pacific have transitioned to slightly gentler whitecaps and those who flocked to the Islands to avoid winter weather have come and gone. With the rainy season is behind you, any rain showers you’ll encounter will be intermittent and quite short. And, with the weather heating up, you’re able to soak up more time under the hot, Hawaiian sun.
From the second half of May until the end of June, the Land of the Rising Sun has pleasant weather and slightly less crowds milling about. The cherry blossoms are now fully in bloom and travellers can visit the iconic shrines, temples and natural sites without an extensive amount of fellow tourists close by. However, it should go without saying that no matter the time of year, Tokyo will always be bustling with hordes of people from near and far.
CARP Members save an additional $100 per person off any tour combinable with all other retail offers. See collette.com/carp to learn how to save.