Top Destinations for the Month of May

2023-03-15 02:16:23 - Drany Macley Drany Macley, the senior editor of, brings extensive journalism background and over eight years of experience in travel writing and editing to the site, offering practical insights and first-hand knowledge through articles on innovative hotels, backed by a BA in Journalism from Ithaca College.

Taking a trip in May allows you to take advantage of shoulder season rates before the influx of tourists that arrive with the start of summer and the end of the school year. Mild temperatures in May make it possible for tourists to enjoy the outdoors or take a vacation on a tropical beach in many parts of the world. Tourists flock to many locations in May because of the many festivals held there.  

We've compiled a list of 12 incredible destinations, both domestic and international, that are perfect for a May getaway.

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Twenty minutes will get you to Norfolk International Airport from Virginia Beach, which is located along the Atlantic Ocean and Chesapeake Bay. Pleasant weather and low-70s temperatures in May make the three-mile oceanfront boardwalk a great place to walk or ride a bike. The walkway is lined with restaurants offering the region's renowned seafood, and a statue of King Neptune serves as a reminder of the area's annual fall festival. The Atlantic Coast Kite Festival (May 6-7) is one of many festivals that springtime brings. On May 12–13, the Virginia International PANFest pays homage to Caribbean music, and on May 26–28, the annual Salute to Summer recognizes the contributions of the U. S forces with nonstop music on three beachfront stages The Something in the Water music festival, hosted by Pharrell Williams and taking place in his hometown of Virginia Beach from April 28-30, will feature a lineup full of A-list performers.

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St. Lucia is a stunning Caribbean island known for its verdant rainforests, picturesque fishing villages, and the Piton Mountains, which are on the list of World Heritage Sites. The clear turquoise waters are perfect for swimming and snorkeling, and there are plenty of white-sand beaches, island food, nightlife, and volcanic mud baths to enjoy. The Saint Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival runs from May 5-14 and features internationally renowned musicians playing styles as diverse as traditional jazz, Afrobeat, gospel, reggae, and pop. Accommodations, a spa, and beachfront dining are just some of the amenities at Sugar Beach, a Viceroy Resort. Suites at the Landings Resort & Spa range in size from one to three bedrooms. The Harbor Club, located on Rodney Bay, also has five distinct dining options. Also, there's the brand-new Zoetry Marigot Bay, the all-adults StolenTime, and the all-inclusive BodyHoliday.

Bhutan, situated high in the eastern Himalayas, is particularly beautiful in the spring, when flowers bloom and the weather is clear and dry and the temperature hovers around sixty. The Buddhist kingdom is a fascinating destination due to its unspoiled countryside, ancient monasteries, and rugged mountains. The Annual Royal Bhutan Flower Exhibition will be held in Thimphu, the country's capital, from May 2-6, and will showcase medicinal plants, local gardeners, artisans, crafts, and a massive mural. Red Savannah offers a variety of group tours to tourists, and many of them include stays at opulent hotels like the Six Senses Thimphu or Paro. After reopening to foreign tourists in September 2022, visitors to Bhutan will be required to pay a Sustainable Development Fee in addition to obtaining a visa.

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The North Carolina coast is lovely in the 70s this time of year, and May is a particularly good time to go. The state's coast is ideal for a spring getaway thanks to its roughly 300 miles of barrier island beaches, coastal towns, history, seafood, and wildlife. The Beaufort Music Festival (May 19-20) and the Atlantic Beach Music Festival (May 20) are two examples of the kinds of events that can be found along the 85-mile stretch of the southern Outer Banks known as "The Crystal Coast." The historic Cape Lookout Lighthouse, built in the 19th century, will be available for tours beginning in May at Cape Lookout National Seashore. Stargazers will love this spot because it's been designated as an International Dark Sky Park. North Carolina's coast is home to numerous wineries, breweries, oyster bars, a caviar farm, and restaurants serving a wide variety of cuisines.

Plan your trip to the Spanish island of Ibiza for May and you'll avoid the peak season crowds. May is also the month of the annual Moda Adlib Fashion Show and the Medieval Festival, both of which can be found in the Old Town and feature live performances, art exhibits, and street parties. Taking place from April 26-28, 2019, the Ibiza International Music Summit will feature performances by renowned musicians from around the world and the opening of several new nightclubs. La Gaia at the five-star Ibiza Gran Hotel, headed by Chef scar Molina of Michelin fame, is now open for the season. Both the Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay and the Six Senses Ibiza offer luxurious accommodations, with the former boasting a wide selection of sea-view rooms and the latter a spa and retreat options for multiple days.

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May is a great time to visit Greece because the weather is pleasant and the bulk of the summer crowds have not yet arrived. Whether you're more interested in the beach, history, romance, nightlife, or wine when planning your vacation to Greece, your choice of destination will depend on the thousands of islands that surround the mainland. Visit the ancient sites of Athens, the starting point of most trips, and then head to the islands for some beach time. On May 1, Cali Mykonos will open for its first full season, complete with a spa and several options for large villas. Another high-end alternative is Kalesma. Andronis Arcadia is a luxury resort with suites and villas on Santorini. There is also the secluded hilltop sanctuary of Magma Resort Santorini, as well as Mystique on the Caldera cliffs. Whether you're interested in a cruise around the islands with Variety Cruises or a stay in a luxury villa recommended by The Thinking Traveller, there are plenty of options.

Australia's most innovative and exciting light, music, and food festival, Vivid Sydney, kicks off on May 26 and lasts for 23 days and nights. Australia reopened its borders to American tourists last fall, marking the first time in three years that this has been possible. At The Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, the Vivid Sydney Light Walk provides visitors with a multi-sensory experience of light, color, and sound across a five-mile walk, with more than 49 light installations and 3-D projects. You can take advantage of the festival to experience the best that Sydney has to offer, from its restaurants and nightlife to its museums and five-star hotels like the Shangri-La Sydney.

Memphis, Tennessee, has perfect weather and fun festivals in the month of May. Beale Street Music Festival (May 5-7) and World Championship Barbeque Cooking Contest (May 18-20) kick off the month-long Memphis in May International Festival. Time permits visiting the Memphis Zoo, the Mississippi Riverfront, the National Civil Rights Museum, and Elvis Presley's Graceland. Memphis experiences a high volume of visitors in the month of May; if you want to stay in the city, you should make hotel reservations soon. Guests can choose between the downtown Hyatt Centric Beale Street and the riverside Big Cypress Lodge, both of which feature rustic decor and are themed around the area's natural surroundings.

The downtown area of Healdsburg, California, 45 miles north of San Francisco in Sonoma Wine Country, is filled with restaurants, shops, galleries, and boutiques. Tourists then travel to the Dry Creek, Russian River, and Alexander Valley American Viticultural Areas (AVAs) to enjoy wine, food, and the region's stunning farmland and vineyards. The Farmers Market has been operating since 1978, and it is known for its wide variety of fresh produce, artisanal cheeses, local honey, and other treats, as well as its cooking demonstrations, live music, and other fun activities. This year, the Healdsburg Wine & Food Experience will run from May 18-21, and the Healdsburg Jazz Festival will be held from June 17-25. Try the Hotel Healdsburg or the Harmon Guest House for a night or two in town. The luxurious Montage Healdsburg is located on 258 acres of land among vineyards and oak trees, and it features 130 rooms in bungalows, 40 private Montage Residences, three restaurants, and a vast spa.

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May is the best time to visit the Palm Beach area because it is before the weather gets too hot and after most of the snowbirds have left. On May 4-7, West Palm Beach will host SunFest, Florida's largest waterfront music and art festival. This happening city is home to The Square, where you can enjoy nightlife, dining, shopping, and more. For some culture before (or after) a day at the beach or pool, the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County recommends stopping by the Norton Museum of Art, Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, and the Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens. Luxury awaits at White Elephant Palm Beach; for an extended stay, a furnished apartment at AKA West Palm is an excellent alternative. There are three airports within two hours of Palm Beach: Palm Beach International, Fort Lauderdale International, and Miami International Airport. Use the fast trains of Florida's Brightline to get around.

Dauphin Island and the waterfront of this Gulf of Mexico and Mobile River city are popular destinations. Mobile's waterways can be explored in a variety of ways, including by kayak, canoe, airboat, fishing tour, or dinner cruise down the river. Southern, French, Spanish, and Creole influences are all present in Mobile's food, which also features plenty of seafood. Nearby, on May 4-6, you can enjoy tethered rides, live performances, and art displays at the Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival. Visitors can learn about Mobile's rich past on the Dora Franklin Finley African American Heritage Trail and at the History Museum of Mobile, which has organized an exhibit about the Clotilda for the Africatown Heritage House. The Mobile Carnival Museum tells the story of how Mardi Gras got its start in the city. The Admiral Hotel is ideally situated close to the convention center and the city's main attractions.

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May is a great time to visit this traditional summer destination because temperatures are rising and there are fewer tourists around. Take advantage of the last few days of spring by visiting the beautiful Cape Cod National Seashore, where you can go hiking and biking, see some of the Cape's famous lighthouses, and eat your fill of lobster and oysters before Memorial Day weekend, the "official" beginning of summer. Reserve a room at a cozy inn, resort, or guest house in one of Cape Cod's charming villages. Located on 27 waterfront acres, the storied Wequassett Resort & Golf Club was established in 1924. Other high-end hotels on Cape Cod include the Chatham Bars Inn, Salt House Nantucket, and Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club. From June 14-18, you can check out the Provincetown International Film Festival.

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