25 Best Places to Visit in May

Where are the best places to travel in May? May is an incredible time of the year to take a trip. It’s shoulder season in many parts of the world, meaning you’ll find lower prices and fewer tourists.

It’s not quite summer in many places, but temperatures are still warm enough to enjoy everything the destination has to offer. We love traveling during May. It’s still cold where we live, so we like to jet off and find somewhere warm and comfortable temperature-wise. Where have our best trips been in May? Read on to see a few of the best places to visit in May!


The Best Places to Visit in May!


Siargao, Philippines

The Philippines are one of the best places to travel in May

May is one of the hottest months of the year in the Philippines. If you are not a fan of scorching temperatures and humidity, then May is not the best time to visit the Philippines. However, that does not include the island of Siargao, when the dry season is between March and October.

Because of its geographical location, the small island of Siargao sees different weather patterns than elsewhere in the Philippines. We visited last year in May and saw barely any rain, and the temperature wasn’t completely unbearable. You’re never too far from the shade and ocean if it gets too hot for you.


Iceland

iceland honeymoon

May in Iceland means it’s just about to hit summer and peak season here. Now is the time to travel to Iceland if you want a semi-reasonable deal on travel (sorry guys, nothing in Iceland is cheap). The weather is temperamental; there is more daylight than night, and you can get beautifully long sunsets.

The Icelanders will be coming out of a long winter, so the atmosphere of Iceland is joyous.  The weather can still be unpredictable, though, and I would recommend packing like you are going to Iceland in the winter, just in case. That means hiking boots for Iceland, a packable down jacket, gloves, and a hat.

Although you won’t see the Northern Lights, May in Iceland is when wildlife comes alive! The beautiful puffin bird returns to the shores of Iceland in April, so it’s almost guaranteed you will be able to see them in May if you are on the lookout. Whale-watching tours will also be more pleasant under the May sun, and they run often. Last but not least, you can go horseback riding without freezing in May!

travel-credit-card

Cyprus

 Best places to visit in May

May has got to be one of the very best times to visit Cyprus. The weather has really improved since the winter in Cyprus, meaning there’s less rain and more sunshine. The average temperature is 20°C and can climb to the mid-20s pretty often. There are also clear skies and about 12 hours of sunshine every day! It’s a great time to visit those fantastic Cypriot beaches and chill in places like Ayia Napa.

The first part of the month is beautifully mild weather, but at the end of the month, things start to heat up a little bit more, with temperatures rising into the mid-20s more often.

Visitors begin to arrive on their vacations (especially from the UK), and it heralds the start of the tourist season proper. Come early to avoid the crowds you see in June, July, and August!


Bali

 Best places to visit in May

One of the best places to travel in May is the Island of the Gods. Sunshine, beautiful beach weather, hardly any rain at all – it’s no wonder May is one of the best times to visit Bali. Temperatures are climbing upwards, with an average of 28°C and highs in the early 30s. Very hot, basically. Fun fact: Bali’s coldest day recorded in May was 20°C!

May is the beginning of the dry and surfing seasons, too (head to the Bukit Peninsula for big offshore swells) until September. Humidity will also be lessening from May onward as the dry season continues. Bali is a dream destination for many, and worth the long flight it takes to get there!


Turkey

Best Cave Hotels in Cappadocia

Turkey is one of the best places to visit in the world in May! May is when sunshine really starts to bless Turkey, as the country gets warmer and warmer. All that rain has brought an abundance of nature to this Mediterranean nation, notably in its mountain valleys. Turkey sees an average temperature of 16°C across the board, sunny days, and fewer clouds in May. There’s not a lot of rain, which is good news. 

By the end of May, the onset of summer starts to get noticeable in places like Istanbul, where temperatures hit average temperatures of 20°C, but humidity is high (75%!). Cappadocia remains cold, with averages of below 10°C for most of the month, so if you want a sunrise balloon ride you will have to bring a down jacket for the morning.


Portugal

Praia do Zavial 2 - Best Beaches in Algarve

Portugal is one of the best countries to visit in May. May is lovely in Portugal, and it’s also the shoulder season! Enjoy Portugal before the summer heat and crowds, and the first time in the year that visiting the beach in a swimsuit is a viable option.

Average temperatures across the country are a very pleasant 24°C and, with 14 hours of sunshine per day, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the top sights and the beaches, especially towards the Algarve.

If you like hiking, this is an excellent time of year to do that, too. You shouldn’t need to bring waterproof stuff, since there are only a couple of days in May affected by showers. Basically, May is one of the best times to visit Portugal if you want to avoid the European crowds (and heat) of summer. 


Jordan

 Best places to visit in May
Traveling Jordan / Best Places to Travel in May

It’s an awesome time of the year in Jordan. The winter (and early spring) rains have watered the nature of Jordan to such an extent that the country is popping with verdant flora and colorful flowers. It’s not too hot, and altogether one of the best places to visit in May.

However, this will be high season – you’ll want to reserve rooms in advance if you want your first pick at Jordan’s top sights (especially near Petra and Wadi Rum).

There are still chances of rain, but only around 5mm of rain falls for the whole month. Temperatures in Petra and Amman hover around 27°C; the Dead Sea and Aqaba are a steamy 35°C – great if you like the heat.


Japan

Kumano Kodo
Hiking the Kumano Kodo in May

May in Japan means things start to get much warmer across the country. Even Hokkaido has thawed by now, with Sapporo seeing its very own hanami around the first week of this month. May can also be punctuated by heatwaves of 30°C+, so it’s good to be prepared.

May is basically the best month of the year to visit Japan. Nowhere is particularly snowy (except the tops of mountains), there’s not loads of rain, and the temperature is – on average – around 20°C.

It’s in May that plants and flowers start to burst into life. It’s a fantastic time to hike the Kumano Kodo and get outside. Azalea bushes make Tokyo’s streets, for example, a rainbow of color.

The better weather, the proper start of spring, and the fact that Golden Week – a period of national holidays clustered together – occurs in May, means it can also be a busy time to visit. However, it is the last nice, sometimes hot, spring weather. Enjoy it before the heat and humidity of Japanese summertime hits.


Morocco

Morocco Travel Tips To Know

Part of Morocco’s gradual move into warmer weather in May. The nationwide average temperature is a mere 29°C, and it’s even cooler around the coast. Rainfall in May is pretty low: expect only about three rainy days the entire month!

However, the desert nature of the south means that the daytime high can soar above 30°C, but Marrakech sees daytime temperatures of 27°C, which is pretty comfortable for the famous city.

If you go towards places like Chefchaouen, you’ll have dreamy weather! May is an awesome time to visit before the school children in Europe are on break and head south!


Italy

Hiking the Path of the Gods along the Amalfi Coast in May

Spring will be in full bloom come May in Italy. Even in the cooler north, temperatures stretch towards the ” warm ” realm. Venice is around 17°C, Rome is about 21°C, while destinations on the Mediterranean Coast hover around 23°C.

May will be a lovely time of year to visit Italian historical sights, ruins like Pompeii, and interesting places like Alberobello (Puglia, southern Italy), with its Trulli – strange, conical-roofed houses. It’s not scorching yet in Southern Italy but very pleasant, making it one of the best places to visit in May. Prime tourist season has yet to hit areas around the very posh Amalfi Coast, meaning if you book early enough you’ll be able to get a great deal in a very expensive area of the world.


Greece

Greece is one of the best places to visit in May. It’s spring in Greece in May, which makes it one of the best times to travel to Greece. Things are inching towards what we’d consider ‘warm,’ and you’ll see around ten hours of sunshine daily. Little rain, too, which is always lovely.

At the start of the month, average temperatures are about 20°C, increasing to 22-23°C by the end of the month. The sea begins to get more bearable at a not-freezing 19°C.

UV levels can be pretty high with all the sunshine, so make sure you slather on that sunscreen and bring a hat. Greece’s summer tourism picks up in June and will last until September, so getting there in May will ensure cheaper accommodation, rental car prices, and fewer crowds. It’s honestly an excellent time to get to the Greek Islands.

Don’t be fooled, though. Evenings are still around 14°C, so it’s not yet shorts-and-t-shirt-after-dark weather. Make sure to bring a lightweight jacket on your trip!


The Galapagos

Galapagos Packing List

The Galapagos is the ultimate bucket list-worthy travel experience. The amount of wildlife you can see on the relatively untouched islands is amazing. That’s just what’s on land, as when you step off the gorgeous islands, you’ll find deep blue Pacific water abundant in marine life.

It’s a place unlike any other on earth, and it’s easy to understand how the islands inspired Charles Darwin. March falls in between the countries’ warm and wet seasons. The warm season means higher precipitation, lush vegetation, warmer temperatures, and vibrant sunsets. It’s a great time to visit, though the Galapagos wildlife can be seen year-round.

The Galapagos climate sees hot and sunny days with the odd heavy shower between January and June, meaning May is a fantastic time to visit.


St. Vincent & The Grenadines

St. Vincent & The Grenadines

Who doesn’t dream of a Caribbean vacation in spring to escape the cold? Well, in St. Vincent & The Grenadines, it certainly isn’t cold in May!  This is the perfect time of year to travel to this tropical location because it’s between hurricane season and peak tourist season.  

Enjoy stunning scenery consisting of lush forest, clear, blue waters and white sandy beaches. The fantastic weather makes for ideal conditions to participate in a range of activities including hiking swimming, scuba diving and snorkeling. 

Fort Charlotte, Dark View Falls and Kingstown Botanical Gardens are some of the top attractions in the region and the Rhythm and Sails Festival is a top event in May. 


Brighton, United Kingdom

Brighton, United Kingdom

If you live in the UK and want a nearby vacation, Brighton is one of the best places to visit in May for you. With temperatures only reaching a high of 14°C, Brighton is not exactly a place you go in May to soak up the sun on a sandy beach.  It is, however, a great place to go if you’re seeking a seaside resort atmosphere where you can visit many cool attractions.  

The Royal Pavilion Palace and Museum, the Brighton i360 Observation Tower, Brighton Museum & Art Gallery, Brighton Toy and Model Museum, Sea Life Aquarium and Booth Museum of Natural History are just a few of the top attractions around town. 

Events related to the Brighton Fringe Festival take place from May 5th to the first week in June.  The festival features artists from all over the world and is one of England’s largest art festivals. 


Huatulco, Mexico

Huatulco

The dry season may be coming to an end, but May is still dry and sunny enough in Huatulco to enjoy an amazing vacation without the high prices and crowds of Spring Break.

As a seaside resort town, you can bet there are plenty of beaches and they are beautiful, sandy beaches too!  Swimming, snorkeling, birdwatching and hiking in the nearby Huatulco National Park are just a few of the top activities you can participate in. Cascadas Magicas de Copalitilla and Llano Grande Waterfalls are top sites in the area. Fun Mexico fact – all beaches in Mexico are public, and you have a great selection around Huatulco. 


Yellowstone National Park, USA

Yellowstone National Park, USA
Yellowstone is one of the best places to visit in May

Of all the National Parks in the United States, Yellowstone is one of the most well-known and one of the best times to visit is in May. This is the time of year when there are fewer crowds, and the temperatures are never too hot or too cold.  Both of these factors make for perfect conditions to enjoy the trails! 

As you explore the park, you’ll see beauty like nowhere else.  Thick forests, valleys, lakes, streams and, of course, the geysers that the park is famous for are some of the sights you’ll see but be sure to keep a watch for bison, elk and other wild animals that live in the park.

Old Faithful is the top attraction in Yellowstone but there are many other things to see in the park including Mammoth Hot Springs, Grand Prismatic Spring and Upper Geyser Basin. 


Munich, Germany

Munich is one of Europe’s great cities and is a great place to visit any time of year, but May is a great time to visit for the nice weather and variety of festivals that take place including Auer Dult, the Vespa Parade and the Frühlingsfest Spring Festival.

It never gets too hot or too cold with daytime temperature hovering around 19°C so it’s perfect for exploring the city’s many attractions including Marienplatz, Nymphenburg Palace, Munich Residenz, Deutsches Museum and Frauenkirche.


Mont-Tremblant

Mont-Tremblant

If you’ve heard of Mont-Tremblant, you’ve likely heard about its fantastic ski resorts and winter wonderland atmosphere.  However, Mont-Tremblant is an equally amazing place to visit in May when the ski crowds have headed home, and the uncrowded natural landscape is all yours to explore!  

Hiking, horseback riding, golfing and mountain biking are the most popular activities to participate in this time of year and the weather, which sees temperatures steady around 15°C, provides perfect conditions for these activities and more.

Some of the top attractions in the area include the Casino de Mont-Tremblant, Mont-Tremblant Resort, Brind’O Aqua Club Spa and Circuit Mont-Tremblant.


Washington, DC

Washington, DC

Daytime temperatures that reach the mid-20s and plenty of sunshine are ideal conditions for spring blooms and that’s exactly what you’ll see during a visit to Washington, DC in May.  You’ll also see many iconic attractions including the Lincoln Memorial, National Mall, Washington Monument, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and the National Gallery of Art. 

Many festivals also take place during this time of year including First Jazz in the Garden and the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival.  The best thing about visiting Washington in May is the lack of tourist crowds and low prices on hotels. 


Malta

Malta

If sunny days with temperatures reaching the mid-20s are a must for your spring vacation, Malta is a great choice and one of the best places to visit in May. 

This archipelago sandwiched between Sicily and Tunisia is also a great place to visit for its vibrant culture with both European and African influences. 

Spend sunny days on the beautiful, sandy beaches or visiting top attractions such as the 16th-century St. John’s Co-Cathedral, Blue Grotto, Mosta Rotunda, National War Museum – Fort St Elmo and Ġgantija.  Be sure to spend at least one day in the capital city of Valletta where you’ll find some of the country’s top restaurants. If you visit during the first week of May, you’ll be able to attend the Valletta Green Festival. 


Laguna Beach, California 

Laguna Beach, California 

When most people think of warm places in the United States, California is one of the first places that come to mind but perhaps you haven’t considered Laguna Beach for your next spring vacation. 

There are fewer crowds in Laguna Beach in May so you can expect a relaxing getaway where you can lounge on Main Beach or Crescent Bay Beach all day long. Or you can visit the area’s top attractions including Crystal Cove State Park, Pacific Marine Mammal Center, Laguna Art Museum and Laguna Coast Wilderness Park.


Catalonia, Spain

barcelona

In Catalonia in May, the temperatures are just right to enjoy the sights and most days are sunny.  Daytime temperatures reach an average of 20°C so it’s not too hot nor too cold. However, since this is considered a shoulder season for the area, you won’t see the big crowds that are around during the hot summer months! 

The top place to visit in the Catalonia region is the bustling city of Barcelona but there are many other great places to explore there too!  Check out Girona, and its medieval wonders and dine at El Celler de Can Roca which is said to be the top restaurant on earth. 

Make your way to Costa Brava and spend the day on a beautiful sandy beach. Other top attractions in Catalonia include La Sagrada Familia, Palau de la Musica Catalana and the Magic Fountains of Montjuic. If you happen to be in the area during the second week in May, the Girona Flower Festival is a popular event to check out. 


Kakadu National Park, Australia

Kakadu National Park

As far as national parks go, Kakadu National Park is a big one.  In fact, it’s the biggest in Australia! It’s also one of the most distinctive places on the planet, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a great place to visit in May due to the fantastic weather that sees temperatures reach the low 30s and little rain. 

The park is rich in culture and natural wonders.  Indigenous peoples have lived in the area for over 40,000 years and the ancient rock art that you can see in the park makes it one of the best places to learn about that long history. As you explore the park, you’ll see spectacular waterfalls, incredible landscapes and many wildlife species including wallabies.  


Miami, Florida

If you’re looking for the ultimate beach vacation combined with lively nightlife venues and fascinating attractions look no further than Miami, Florida. In May, the temperatures climb into the high 20s so lying on the beach all day is certainly an option! No worries about crowds because Spring Break is long past and the summer crowd hasn’t arrived yet.  

Want to check out some local festivals?  In May, the GroundUp Music Festival, Miami Grand Prix and Tamiami International Orchid Festival are some of the top events you might want to check out. When not basking in the sun on South Beach, check out the city’s many attractions such as Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, Wynwood Walls, Phillip & Patricia Frost Museum of Science and Pérez Art Museum Miami.  

Searching for a road trip? Rent a car in Miami and drive from Key Largo to Key West!


Thailand

Visiting Chiang Mai

Thailand is beautiful all year round, but if you’re seeking a tropical vacation without the tourist crowds where you can immerse in a vibrant culture and lie on the beach all day, Thailand is a great choice.   

While the country does see a rainy season, you won’t see much moisture in May as it’s pretty dry this time of year with temperatures can soar to a high of 34°C. Besides hanging out at the beaches, other popular activities include roaming Bangkok’s street food markets, exploring the unique geologic formations, grottoes and steep cliffs of Dragon Island and getting the truly authentic Thai experience in Chiang Mai.  The Boon Bang Fai Rocket Festival is a popular event that takes place in May. 


Best Places to Travel in May – Quick Answers

sicily in may

What Big Holiday is in May?

There are multiple US holidays in May, including Memorial Day, Mother’s Day, Cinco De Mayo, and dozens of other “national” days that you are probably unaware of.

Where are the Best Places to Travel in May for a Beach Holiday?

From this list consider Siargao, Bali, Portugal, the Italian Coast, St. Vincent & The Grenadines, Greece, and Malta. In the US there are plenty of great places to visit for a beach vacation in May including Laguna Beach, California, Miami, and Carolina Beach in North Carolina.

Where is Warmest in Europe in May?

The Mediterranean countries have some of the warmest weather you can find in Europe, and in general are among some of the best places to travel in May.

Where is Hot and Cheap in May?

Southeast Asia, in general, is hot and cheap in May. Consider visiting The Philippines, Thailand, and Bali.

Where is Sunniest in May?

Sunshine hot spots include Southern European countries like Spain and Malta. You also can’t go wrong with Miami, Jamaica, and Mexico’s Caribbean Coast.

Where are the Best Countries to Visit in May?

Thailand, Iceland for stunning scenery without the summer crowds, Morocco, Tunisia, Spain and Greece.

Is the Caribbean Okay to Visit in May?

The Caribbean region offers the most favorable weather conditions and is considered the prime season for tourists to visit in May. It’s outside the rainy season and you can expect dry and sunny weather.

Where Should We Honeymoon in May?

Greece, Portugal, and Bali are all solid honeymoon destinations in May.

Are Holidays Cheaper in May?

May is a shoulder season month in many destinations throughout the world. In Europe and North America in particular, May is cheaper and you’ll see fewer crowds. This is a period before the kids are off from school and the summer holidays truly start. From Memorial Day onwards, expect summer season to come into full swing.



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About Natasha

Natasha is the co-founder of The World Pursuit. She is an expert in travel, budgeting, and finding unique experiences. She loves to be outside, hiking in the mountains, playing in the snow on her snowboard, and biking. She has been traveling for over 10 years, across 7 continents, experiencing unique cultures, new food, and meeting fantastic people. She strives to make travel planning and traveling easier for all. Her advice about international travel, outdoor sports, and African safari has been featured on Lonely Planet, Business Insider, and Reader’s Digest.

Learn more about Natasha Alden on The World Pursuit About Us Page.

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