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20 Best US Destinations To Escape The Sizzling Summer Heat (2022 Review)

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For most of us, we long for warm summer weather, especially if we live in the northern United States or somewhere else in the world where winters are cold and damp. However, in many places, temperatures in June, July and August become unbearably hot. Even when summer temperatures are seemingly ideaI, humidity – the amount of moisture in the air – may be so high that the actual heat that you feel is several degrees higher than what the thermostat says. Some of us delight in this kind of blistering heat while others fantasize about cool breezes and destinations with mild summers. If you long for cooler summer weather, is there anywhere in America that you can go? Absolutely! Here are 20 of the best places to visit in the USA to escape the sizzling summer heat.

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Other Destinations In The USA

If you know that you want to explore one of the unbelievable national parks in the United States in June, then check out 23 Best National Parks To Visit In The USA In June for tips on what to do, where to stay, and how best to get there.

For an overview of the greatest times to visit some of the best national parks in the USA, check out Best Times To Visit The 25 Best National Parks In The USA. Top travel bloggers from around the world give you advice about how to spend your time, save money, and other inside tips to make your vacation memorable.

Not sure when or what type of vacation that you may want? Here are a list of other destinations (cities, towns and state and national parks) that would be ideal at other times of the year, all recommended by travel experts.

Best Places In The USA To Escape The Summer Heat

Here are 20 spectacular US vacation destinations in cities, towns, national and state parks that offer beautiful mild summer temperatures. Below, industry experts, travel bloggers and locals recommend the best things to do, where to stay, and how to get there. Historical average temperatures during June, July and August will be highlighted in addition to expected humidity. Don’t forget – you want to avoid high humidity! Nothing is worst than seeking the shade of a tree to escape the scorching sun only to still feel unbearable heat from humidity.

best places to visit in the USA to escape stifling summer heat
Lake Tahoe, California and Nevada (Photo courtesy of Pixaby)

Lake Tahoe, California and Nevada

By Cortney from Tin Can Living

Hoping to find a cool place to vacation this summer in the United States? Lake Tahoe is a large lake in the Sierra Nevada Mountains in both California and Nevada and one of the best places to go to beat the summer heat. In addition, it offers amazing scenery, such as forests overflowing with beautiful trees, spectacular beaches with views of Half Dome Mountain, and crystal clear blue water inviting you to swim.

Weather

The weather is fantastic in June, July and August. Average daytime highs range from 73oF to 80oF during these months with July being the warmest month. It can get quite cool at night so make sure you bring pants and a warm jacket. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

With over 300 sunny days each year and an elevation of 6200 feet above sea level, Lake Tahoe offers plenty of summer activities that will thrill you.

For example, Lake Tahoe offers more than 150 miles of trails for hiking and biking. The best ones include The Flume Trail is one of the best for biking. It is just over 14 miles long with beautiful views of the lake. 

The Tahoe Rim Trail is great for hiking with over 160 miles of gorgeous landscape, peaks, valleys, and more. It is offers hikes for all levels.

The Mount Rose Summit is also a hiker’s paradise with over 11 miles of picturesque summit views of Lake Tahoe and the surrounding areas. 

When you are ready to cool off, the Lake is waiting. The best place to swim is in Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park. Lake Tahoe is also home to many beaches, such as Sand Harbor Beach and Spooner Lake, which are perfect for sunbathing and enjoying the water. You can even rent kayaks and paddle boards.

If you want to sightsee, take the Emerald Bay Gondola up the mountain for beautiful views. Alternatively, explore Vikingsholm Castle, a beautiful summer home built in 1929. The views from the castle are breathtaking and provide visitors with incredible photos of Lake Tahoe’s natural beauty.

Directions

The weather is fantastic in June, July and August. Average daytime highs range from 73oF to 80oF during these months with July being the warmest month. It can get quite cool at night so make sure you bring pants and a warm jacket. There is no humidity.

The closest international airport is Reno-Tahoe International Airport, an hour away. Lake Tahoe is also three and a half hours from San Francisco.

Hotel Recommendation

Cortney says, “When you arrive, the best place to stay is at the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel. The hotel is located on the South Shore of Lake Tahoe and offers guests a variety of amenities, including an outdoor pool, hot tubs, sauna, and fitness center.”

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The North Shore, Minnesota (Photo courtesy of Stefanie from Open Road Odysseys)

The North Shore, Minnesota

By Stefanie from Open Road Odysseys

Stretching along the western edge of Lake Superior, the North Shore of Minnesota is comprised of towns and state parks from Duluth all the way up to Grand Portage on the Canadian border. It is a spectacularly beautiful part of the United States and in summer, it is one of the best destinations to experience beautiful mild summers.

Weather

Summer temperatures average around 75 degrees and rarely exceed 85. While it only rains about 7 days each month in June, July, and August, fog on the lake is common, especially in the morning. It cools down in the evening, but not significantly. It is humid only 5% of the summer.

Best Things To Do

Drive Route 61 for jaw-dropping views of the Great Lake around every bend. It hugs the coast of Lake Superior the entire way. Spend some time driving as much of the route as you can, stopping at various shops, restaurants, and overlooks along the way.

Eight state parks are located in the area, offering everything from lighthouses to waterfalls to spectacular hiking trails. Gooseberry Falls is a popular park, showcasing five waterfalls that tumble into Lake Superior. Split Rock Lighthouse offers visitors the chance to climb up a lighthouse and explore the light keeper’s quarters.

For the avid hiker, the Bean & Bear Loop trail just outside of Silver Bay is a moderate trail that rewards you with fantastic views for your efforts. For those who want to take it a little easier, there are miles of trails for all fitness levels, many with sections right next to the beautiful shores of Lake Superior.

Directions

Duluth International Airport is the closest and best option for those who are flying into the area. You can start your road trip from the city of Duluth.

Hotel Recommendation

Stefanie says, “When you’re ready to call it a day, consider staying at Grand Superior Lodge, a waterfront resort in Two Harbors. It offers a mix of cabins, log homes, and lodge rooms with modern conveniences and a homey atmosphere.”

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Seattle, Washington (Photo by Thom Milkovic of Unsplash)

Seattle, Washington

By Nikki from She Saves She Travels

One of the best American cities to visit to experience cooler summer weather is Seattle. On the whole, Washington is one of the best states in the USA to offer mild summers.

Seattle is a big city full of diverse culture and it really offers something for everyone. Whether you have a day in Seattle or a week, it will be easy to fill your time in this fun destination.

Weather

With average highs in the 70’s even in the peak of summer, it’s a great spot to escape the summer heat. As a bonus – this is the driest time for this traditionally rainy city!

There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

First-timers to Seattle need to visit the famous Pike Place Market. Watch the flying fish at the Pike Place Fish Market, shop fresh flowers, discover artisan jewelry and peruse the handmade crafts. 

You will find yourself on the waterfront a short walk from Pike Place Market. Take a ride on the Seattle Great Wheel, the largest ferris wheel on the west coast. It offers phenomenal views of the bay and city. On a clear day, you can even see Mount Rainier!

While in downtown, be sure to check out the Seattle Art Museum, Space Needle and Chihuly Garden and Glass. 

Another gem in the Seattle area is Alki Beach. Located in west Seattle along Elliott Bay, it’s a great spot to enjoy the outdoors on a beautiful summer day. Sit on the beach and watch the waves crash on the shore. Catch a game of sand volleyball or rent kayaks. And when you’re hungry, grab a bite to eat while appreciating the views of the water.

Directions

To get to Seattle, fly into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Rent a car, take public transportation or ride share service. Downtown Seattle is nearby.

Hotel Recommendation

Nikkie says, “If you’re planning to stay downtown, the Seattle Marriott Waterfront provides great views and a fantastic location.”

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Fairbanks, Alaska (Photo courtesy of Paula from Paula Pins The Planet)

Fairbanks, Alaska

By Paula Martinelli from Paula Pins The Planet

If you are looking to beat the summer heat, a vacation in Fairbanks, Alaska should be on the top of your list. Fairbanks is a popular and must-visit destination in any Alaska Itinerary during any time of the year. It offers vast forests, wilderness, and outdoor adventures, including chasing the Aurora Borealis in winter. 

Weather

Alaska is one of the coolest states in the USA in summer. However, Fairbanks offers very pleasant summer temperatures with average daily highs in the high 60s. The hottest month of the year is July, with an average high of 72°F. There is no humidity.

 Best Things To Do

In summertime, Fairbanks supplies different and very unique attractions. In June, July and August, you can experience endless daylight and the famous midnight sun. Daylight lasts for 24 hours.

Another very popular thing to do is to spend time at the Chena Hot Springs Resort. Besides soaking in the hot springs, the resort offers ATV rides, hiking trails, and horseback tours.

And since the North Pole is only 20 minutes away, make sure you plan to visit Santa Claus, where the magic spirit of Christmas lasts all year long, even during summer. 

Directions

Fairbanks is only a short 1-hour flight from Anchorage or you could take a beautiful scenic drive approximately 6 hours. Also, the Alaska Railroad runs between Anchorage and Fairbanks. It takes 12 hours as it winds its away through rugged surroundings. The views are stunning.

Hotel Recommendation

Paulina says, “If you are looking to enjoy the quiet nature of Fairbanks, great places to stay are the Bear Lodge @ The Wedgewood Resort, beautifully located on 105 acres, with 45 of which are the resort’s own wildlife sanctuary.”

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Plymouth, Massachusetts (Photo courtesy of Brittany from Travel By Brit)

Plymouth, Massachusetts

By Brittany from Travel By Brit

If you’re looking for one of the best destinations in the USA to escape blistering summer temperatures, you should consider taking a vacation in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Weather

The town experiences beautiful summer weather with highs between 70s to low 80s Fahrenheit. There is humidity only 11% of the time. July is the warmest month of the year with the possibility of humidity 30% of the time.

Best Things To Do

While you’re in Plymouth, you can’t miss the chance to explore the city’s rich history. Plymouth is endearingly known as “America’s Hometown” because it was where the Pilgrims stepped off the Mayflower in 1620 to begin their life in America.

You can learn more about their lives at the Plimoth Patuxet Museums, one of the best things to do in Plymouth, MA. This museum includes four main attractions: the Historic Patuxet, English Village, Mayflower II, and the Plimoth Grist Mill.  

You should also plan to visit Plymouth Rock, marking the place there with Mayflower landed in Plymouth, and the Jabez Howland House, the only existing structure where Pilgrims lived.

When you’ve learned enough history, you can take a sunset cruise on Plymouth Harbor or go hiking, biking, or exploring in Myles Standish State Forest to enjoy the cool, refreshing summer weather.  

Directions

If you’re flying into Plymouth, you should fly into Boston Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts. Plymouth is roughly a 45-mile drive from the airport.

Hotel Recommendation

Brittany says, “Consider booking a stay in the heart of Plymouth at the Holiday Inn Express – Plymouth, an IHG Hotel, for close access to all the best things to do in Plymouth!”

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Yosemite National Park, California (Photo courtesy of Pixaby)

Yosemite National Park, California

By Urvi from Urvi’s Travel Journal

Yosemite National Park is a stunning national park located in northern California. It attracts numerous hikers, campers, and day-trippers all year around. It is one of the warmer summer locations in this article, but without any humidity, it would still be one of the best places to travel to in the United States for beautiful summer weather.

Weather

In summer, temperature can vary from 60F to 90F. The weather in June, July and August are similar. There is no humidity so you should find lots of relief in the shade on those days where the temperature is closer to 90F.

Best Things To Do

Most travelers visit Yosemite NP in summer because it’s famous for its Half Dome hike and view from Glacier Point. You must be thinking, why in summer? To reach Glacier Point, you have to follow Tioga Road (Highway 120 through the National Park) and Glacier Point Road. Due to snow, it is closed in winter and reopened in May.

While the Half Dome is popular for hiking, you have to apply in advance for a hiking permit. They allow a maximum of 300 hikers each day beyond the base of the sub dome. 

In addition, Mariposa Grove of giant Sequoias and Bridalveil Falls are other popular destinations in Yosemite National Park and well worth exploring while there.

Directions

You should fly to Los Angeles, San Francisco or San Jose and rent a car. It’s almost 290 miles from LAX, 170 miles from SFO airport, and 160 miles from San Jose airport.

Hotel Recommendation

Urvis says, “There are many accommodation options inside Yosemite National Park, including lodges and campsites. The Ahwahnee and Yosemite Valley Lodge are open year-round, while Wawona Hotel, White Wolf Lodge, and Tuolumne Meadows Lodge are only available seasonally.

In my opinion, staying in a tent at Curry Village is an outstanding experience. I would recommend trying that one if you are looking for something unique.”

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Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin (Photo courtesy of Lindsey from Have Clothes Will Travel)

Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin

By Lindsey from Have Clothes Will Travel

Wisconsin Dells is located in Southern Wisconsin and dubbed the “Waterpark Capital of the World”. Summer temperatures are beautiful, perfect for a day at the waterpark or exploring.

Weather

The average high temperature in Wisconsin Dells is between 70oF and low 80s between June, July and August. Over those three months, only 9% of the days are humid, with 30% occurring in July.

Best Things To Do

Wisconsin Dells is home to more than 20 different waterparks. Noah’s Ark is the largest water park here, coming in at 70-acres. It features awesome water slides, pools, giant wave pools, and endless water play areas for both kids and adults. It is consistently ranked as one of the best things to do in Wisconsin Dells.

Another fantastic activity here is to take a Duck Boat tour. These boats are amphibious vehicles that can function both on land and water. It’s a unique experience and a fun way to explore the Dells.

You can also tour the longest and deepest land canyon in Wisconsin at Lost Canyon. It’s over a mile of cliff-walled gorges made from sandstone that haven’t been touched by the sun for over 50,000 years. The best way to experience this is through a horse-drawn carriage ride.

Directions

Madison Truax Field is the closest major airport to Wisconsin Dells, about an hour away.

Hotel Recommendation

Lindsey says, “There are a lot of different incredible accommodations in Wisconsin Dells, however, one of the best options is to stay right at a waterpark, like Kalahari Resort, Mt. Olympus Resorts or Noah’s Ark – then the waterpark fun is just outside your door!”

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best places to visit in the USA for mild summer temperatures
Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado (Photo courtesy of Pixaby)

Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

By Daria from The Discovery Nut

Rocky Mountain National Park has become one of the most popular national parks in the United States. It is also one of the best summer destinations in the United States for mild summer temperatures and beautiful weather, perfect for hiking and camping. Colorado as a whole is a fantastic state where you will find lots of mild summer destinations.

Weather

The high elevation of Rocky Mountain National Park makes it an ideal place to escape hot summer weather. The average high temperature in June, July and August range from high 60’s to high 70’s, however it’s not uncommon for it to plunge into the 50’s at night. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

Rocky Mountain National Park offers many great hikes for all levels from simple trails in places like Sprague Lake that are perfect for families to high-alpine trails such as Skypond and Chasm Lake with more challenging terrain. You should have good hiking experience to face the elevation gain and rugged terrain.

One of the highlights of the National Park is Trail Ridge Road, the highest continuous paved highway in the National Park System that peaks at 12,183 feet. Driving on this road is a true adventure as you will enjoy sweeping alpine views, and, if you get lucky, even see some wildlife!

Directions

Rocky Mountain National Park is located about 1.5 hours away from Denver International Airport.

Hotel Recommendation

Daria says, “Many visitors choose to camp inside the Park during summer months, however you can also stay at one of the hotels in nearby Estes Park. The historic Stanley Hotel is particularly popular among travelers.”

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Stowe, Vermont (Photo courtesy of Eileen from FamiliesGo!)

Stowe, Vermont

By Eileen from FamiliesGo! 

Stowe is a Vermont Ski town that is lovely to visit in summer thanks to an Alpine setting that doesn’t get too hot, and lots of outdoor activities. It is one of the best places to spend time in the USA to avoid extreme summer heat.

Weather

Summer weather ranges from high 60s to high 70s. There is little temperature difference between June, July and August. Over June, July and August, only 4% of the days are humid.

Best Things To Do

For fun summer hiking, choose trails that lead to waterfalls, like the easy Bingham Falls Trail in Smugglers Notch State Park or Moss Glen Falls trail in nearby Putnam State Park.

For more challenging hikes, take the ski gondola to the top of Mansfield Mountain, where it can be cold and windy even when it’s warm down below. A handful of trails start at the top of the mountain and reward you with stellar views of the Green Mountains. However, be prepared for rugged trails that require proper hiking boots and a willingness to go scrambling over rocks.  

A greenway starts in town and winds for several miles toward the ski mountain. It’s an easy and scenic ride, with plenty of opportunities to stop at local brew pubs, cideries and ice cream shops that sell Vermont “creamies”, dense, high-fat soft-serve ice cream often flavored with maple syrup. With all the outdoor activities, you can indulge without any guilt!

If you want a lazy day, head out of town and stop by Cold Hill Cider Mill for a good picnic— sandwiches with Vermont cheddar cheese and hard and soft cider. Take your lunch to nearby Waterbury Center State Park on the Waterbury Reservoir. A modest day fee gives you access to a grassy swimming area with picnic tables and bathrooms. You can rent paddle boards and kayaks from local Umiak Outfitters if you want to get out on the water.

Directions

Burlington International Airport is less than 40 miles away with direct flights from 15 U.S. airports as far west as Denver and as far south as Miami.  

Hotel Recommendation

Eileen says, “For a unique resort experience, book a room at the Trapp Family Lodge (yes, those Von Trapps). In addition to its own hiking and mountain biking trails, the Alpine resort offers tennis, rock-wall climbing, swimming pools and more. They brew their own excellent Austrian-style beer in their bierhall, where you can dine without staying at the lodge.

If you want to be in town, consider the upscale rustic Green Mountain Inn, which has an excellent restaurant, heated outdoor pool and outdoor fireplace. It offers an easy walk to Stowe’s restaurants, shops and coffee bars.”

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best summer vacation destination with mild summer temperatures
Glacier National Park, Montana (Photo courtesy of Cynthia from Sharing The Wander)

Glacier National Park, Montana

By Cynthia from Sharing The Wander

Glacier National Park in Montana is best visited in the summer months, when the day’s highs rarely pass 75 degrees. With crystal clear waters rushing over rainbow-colored stones, and mountain peaks to explore above, this park is full of amazing scenery and wildlife. You may even see snow on the mountain peaks in summer!

The closest airport to Glacier NP is Kalispell, MT (FCA), just under an hour away. However, most people will find it more cost effective to fly into Spokane, WA (GEG) which is a four-hour drive from the Park.

Weather

Average high temperatures range from the low 70s to the low 80s, mostly in July and August. It does cool down at night so bring a warm jacket. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

Glacier National Park is quite large, covering over 1500 square miles, with only one road cutting through the middle of the park. The most popular area to visit is the Going-to-the-Sun Road which crosses the park from West to East (and back) with fantastic viewpoints along the way.

There are many popular hikes in Glacier, including the stunning Hidden Lakes Trail which starts at Logan Pass, the middle point of the Going-to-the-Sun-Road. Another favorite, Iceberg Lake, can be reached via a 10-mile trail from the Many Glacier area of the National Park.

Not interested in long hikes? You can also canoe in Glacier, take a horseback ride, or even fly over the park to see wildlife from above.

Directions

The closest airport to Glacier NP is Kalispell, MT (FCA) though most people will find it more cost effective to fly into Spokane, WA (GEG) which is a four-hour drive from the Park.

Hotel Recommendation

Cynthia says, “Decide which areas of the park are most important to you, and choose lodging near those areas. Within the park, consider the Many Glacier Hotel. Built by the Great Northern Railway in 1914, this is one of the grand, traditional park lodges. If you prefer to staying outside the park, consider St. Mary Village, as it gives you the easiest access to the most sections of the park without long drives.”

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Cannon Beach, Oregon (Photo courtesy of Pixaby)

Cannon Beach, Oregon

By Candice from CS Ginger

One of the best places to visit in the United States to beat the summer heat is Cannon Beach, Oregon. It is a charming coastal town about 90 minutes west of Portland Oregon. Overall, Oregon is one of the best states in the USA for cooler summer temperatures.

Weather

The weather in July and August is very nice if you’re looking for mild summer temperatures. There are few days per month of rain averaging about four days a month. Average highs hover in the high 60s with lows in the low 50s. There is no humidity. It can be breezy, so sweatshirts and pants are appropriate.

Best Things To Do

There are so many fun things to do in Cannon Beach. One of the best activities is tide pooling at Haystack Rock, one of the most iconic sites in Cannon Beach. At low tide, there are tons of tide pools filled with starfish, sea anemones, crabs, and other wildlife.

Another fun thing to do is hike in Ecola State Park. A great trail is the one down to Crescent Beach, a 1.25-mile hike from Ecola Point.

There is also a quaint and charming downtown area which is home to art galleries, boutiques, tourist shops, and restaurants. If you have a sweet tooth, be sure to check out Bruce’s Candy Kitchen for the signature Cannon Beach Sea Salt taffy.

Directions

The closest major airport is in Portland. From Portland, it is an easy two hour drive.

Hotel Recommendation

Candice says, “The Ocean Lodge is one of the best places to stay in Cannon Beach. It is an oceanfront property with a free continental breakfast. Suite rooms come with fireplaces which are perfect for the chilly summer mornings.”

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best US places to visit to escape extreme summer temperatures
Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming (Photo courtesy of Jessica from Uprooted Traveler)

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

By Jessica Schmit from Uprooted Traveler

Grand Teton National Park in Jackson Hole, Wyoming is one of the best US destinations to go in June, July and August while the weather is warm, but not oppressively hot. In addition, with plenty of high elevation hikes and glacial lakes to splash around in, there are many activities to keep you cool.

Whether you’re looking for an active excursion or simply want to laze about in a gorgeous setting, Grand Teton National Park may just be your perfect summer getaway.

Weather

Average high temperatures range from high 60s Fahrenheit to high 70s. It can get quite cool at night so bring layers. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

Once you’re here, it’s time to lace up those hiking boots! If you’re up for an adventure, consider hiking up to the robin-egg-blue glacial pool called Delta Lake by following a challenging 8.8-mile hike through pine tree forests.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a more relaxing activity, rent a kayak or stand-up paddle board and glide through the crystal clear, green waters of String Lake. The lake is glacially-fed, so while the temperature is refreshing in the height of summer, the water is always frosty cold.

If you’re looking to get out of the wilderness, no trip to Grand Teton NP would be complete without exploring the neighboring town of Jackson, which offers amazing craft breweries, like Snake River Brewing, and ice cream parlours, like Moo’s.

Directions

You can either fly into Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (approximately a four hour drive) or Salt Lake City International Airport (approximately a five hour drive).

Hotel Recommendation

Jessica says, “Word to the wise – accommodation in Jackson Hole books up fast and can be quite pricey. There are a few gems, like Elk Country Inn, that offer cozy lodging with the Wild West charm for which this part of the country is known, all at an affordable rate.”

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San Diego, California (Photo courtesy of Kim from Traveling Swansons)

San Diego, California

By Kim from Traveling Swansons

San Diego is a city in southern California on the Pacific Coast known for its amazing weather all year round. In particular, it is one of the best cities to visit in the USA for beautiful summer weather and lots of fun things to do.

Weather

The average high in summer is in the high 70s with virtually no rain. June tends to be cloudy and overcast in the early mornings, known as June Gloom. However, July and August are sunny most of the time. Only 6% of summer days have humidity.

Best Things To Do

No trip to San Diego wouldbe complete without visiting Balboa Park. This Park has many museums, beautiful gardens, and amazing architecture. The world-famous San Diego Zoo is also located here. It is consistently ranked in the top 10 zoos in the USA.

Since San Diego is located on the coast, visiting one of the popular beaches, such as Mission Beach, Pacific Beach or Coronado Beach, is a must. For other fantastic beaches in San Diego and things to do there, please see 50 Best US Beach Destinations.

You should try and visit La Jolla to see the sea lions and seals. The La Jolla coastline is absolutely stunning and seeing these adorable animals in their natural habitat is wonderful.

Directions

Flying to San Diego is easy. San Diego International Airport is conveniently located three miles northwest of downtown San Diego.

Hotel Recommendation

Kim says, “The Hilton San Diego Bayfront is a great place to stay in San Diego. The views of the bay and city are amazing and you will love the heated saltwater pool overlooking the bay. It’s conveniently located near the San Diego Convention Center and the Padres’ Petco Park. You are also within walking distance of the Gaslamp Quarter.”

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Coeur D’Alene, Idaho (Photo courtesy of Kay from The Awkward Traveller)

Coeur D’Alene, Idaho

By Kay from The Awkward Traveller

Often overlooked as an exciting travel destination in the USA, the state of Idaho really begins to flex its prowess during the summer, where temperatures are a comfortable 80 degrees with pleasant winds. Specifically, Coeur D’Alene, Idaho is one of the best places to travel to escape the scorching heat found in many other places in America, with clear skies and plenty of lush trees for shade.

Weather

Average high temperatures in June, July and August in Coeur D’Alene range from mid 70s to mid 80s. Even better, there is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

Coeur D’Alene is most known for its beautiful lake that spans most of the city. Spending time on or around it (either relaxing on a boat, splashing along its shores, or renting motor water vehicles) is one of the best ways to cool off from the sun.

Coeur D’Alene is also known for its accessible bike and hiking trails, and even beginners will quickly fall into pace alongside residents on their morning and afternoon ventures into nature.

If you’re just looking to stay in the city, head to Sherman Ave to browse small businesses, local art galleries, and tuck into one of the many tasty restaurants to round out your day.

Directions

The closest international airport is in the neighboring city of Spokane, only twenty minutes away. Alternatively, you could go on an Idaho road trip and fly into Boise about a seven-hour drive away.

Hotel Recommendation

Kay says, “The Blackwell Hotel is a community favorite in Coeur D’Alene, and alongside unique rooms, the hotel offers incredible garden and patio spaces to help you unwind after a long day of exploring.”

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best places to visit in the USA to escape blistering summer temperatures
Acadia National Park, Maine (Photo courtesy of James from Parks Collecting)

Acadia National Park, Maine

James from Parks Collecting

Acadia National Park is an incredible place. The Park is spread over several islands and peninsulas on the rugged Maine coast. It’s a world of forests, pebbly beaches, rocky shorelines and beautiful islands.  

The lovely town of Bar Harbor lies right outside the National Park. Visiting the classic New England lobster fishing village and the stunning national park is the perfect summer getaway with mild summer temperatures.  

Weather

Summers bring warm days and cool nights. Days are mostly sunny, though rain occurs in average about a quarter of the time. Average highs in the summer are in the high 60’s to mid 70’s Fahrenheit. Only 3% of the days are humid.

Best Things To Do

There are plenty of things for the whole family to do in Bar Harbor and the neighboring Acadia National Park. The National Park has incredible hikes through the woods, ranging from challenging trails like the Beehive, or much easier and safer trails like The Bowl. End your hike at Echo Lake or Sand Beach so you can take a dip in the water.

Another fun activity that kids will love is to sail on a tall ship. Cruises on a large historic ship leave from Bar Harbor and sail around the nearby islands. Adults can relax and enjoy the cool sea breezes and spectacular views while kids will be amazed at the incredible ship.

Another way to get out on the water is to take a kayaking trip. Guided tours paddle around the rocky shores of the area, giving a close-up view of the rugged New England woods and pebbly beaches. You will almost certainly see some buoys for lobster fishing.

Directions

There are several airport choices. Hancock County-Bar Harbor Airport (BHB) is the closest airport, just 10 miles from Bar Harbor, but it’s small with only a handful of flights. After that, the nearest is Bangor International Airport (BGR) (50 miles from Bar Harbor) which has more options.

The nearest large, major international airport is Boston Logan International Airport (BHB), 280 miles away.

Hotel Recommendation

James says, “Bar Harbor has a lot of accommodation options. A great one is the Bar Harbor Grand Hotel. Set in a replica of the historic Rodick House, it is a beautiful boutique hotel right in the center of town.”

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Olympic National Park, Washington (Photo courtesy of The Wandering Queen)

Olympic National Park, Washington

By Michelle from The Wandering Queen

One of the best US destinations to go to escape stifling summer heat is Olympic National Park. It offers mountains, beaches, rainforests, lakes, and waterfalls. There is so much to see and do, and the weather in June, July and August is outstanding!  

Weather

Olympic National Park offers mild summer temperatures with highs in the 60s. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

One of the best things to do in the National Park includes visiting some of the many beaches, like Shi Shi, Rialto, Ruby, and Second Beach. You can even get a permit to sleep on some of them.

Another popular activity is to go to Hurricane Ridge and see the stunning views of the Olympic Mountains. You don’t even need to hike. However, if you are up for an adventure, make sure to hike Hurricane Hill or Klahhane Ridge.

Lake Crescent should be next on your to-do list. This lake is a bright blue/green color and is perfect for kayaking. There are even popular trails near the lake like Mount Storm King and Marymere Falls in case you get the urge to explore.

Directions

It is a 2 hour drive to Port Angeles from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

Hotel Recommendation

Michelle says, “It is recommended to stay in the cute town of Port Angeles, which is filled with shops and restaurants. The best hotel in Port Angeles is The Olympic Lodge.”

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best destinations in the USA to spend time in with cooler summer temperatures and low humidity
Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota (Photo courtesy of The Unknown Enthusiast)

Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota

By Stephanie from The Unknown Enthusiast

Boundary Waters Cananoe Area Wilderness is a pristine wilderness area in northern Minnesota where you can escape the summer heat as you enjoy multi-day canoe or kayak expeditions through beautiful lake country. This is much different from canoeing on rivers. The Boundary Waters area is filled with lakes, so a trip here involves canoeing across a lake, portaging to the next lake, and then canoeing again. 

The lakes and portage routes can vary greatly in size – lakes can take anywhere from 10 minutes to many hours to cross, and portage points are anywhere from 30 feet to ¾ of a mile. When you portage, you carry gear in backpacks and canoes overhead as you make your way across land. 

Because the number of visitors is restricted, you rarely see anyone else and the water is clear and clean. Bald eagles soar overhead, and loon calls fill your ears in the evening. 

So if you’re ready for an epic summer adventure filled with stunning natural scenery and mild summer temperatures, head north and enjoy the beauty of Boundary Waters.

Weather

It’s a perfect summer adventure, as the average highs are between mid 60s to mid 70’s, although it cools down a lot in the evenings. About half the days in summer see some kind of rain, with each month getting about 2.5 inches of precipitation.

You can expect humidity only 3% of the time.

Best Things To Do

When you are done canoeing for the day, there are a lot of activities to do! There are a few hikes to lookout points; cliffs or large rocks to jump off into cool, fresh water; good fishing; and waterfalls to climb.

Or you can just relax in a hammock.

At night, without any light pollution, the stars are phenomenal!

Directions

The closest airport to Boundary Waters is in Duluth, Minnesota, which is about 2 hours south of the main entry point. Alternatively, it is about 4.5 hours from the Twin Cities.

best coolest destination to visit in America to escape hot summer temperatures
Seward, Alaska (Photo courtesy of Lina from Bucket List Places)

Seward, Alaska

By Lina from Bucket List Places

There is no better place for cool summers in the United States than the state of Alaska. Filled with the tallest mountain peaks in North America and incredible wildlife, there is truly something for everyone to enjoy.

A trip to Alaska would not be completed without spending time in Seward. A quaint town located on the water, this beautiful place is one of the best places to visit in Alaska. Seward packs everything from hiking, to bear viewing to whale watching.

Weather

Weather in Seward during July and August can be a bit unpredictable. While you may be in luck and encounter clear skies, it is best to be safe and pack a jacket. Being on the coast in Alaska, this area is known to be rainy. Average high temperatures range from high 50s to high 60s. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

For the adventure minded, grab a water taxi, a rental kayak and book yourself a cabin in Kenai Fjords National Park. From there, you can live amongst the black bears, spend some time clamming and kayak amongst icebergs and glaciers.

For those looking for a more relaxed experience, book a glacier and wildlife cruise and meet the local residents while a national park ranger tells you about the area. If hiking is more your style, be sure to try the hidden lakes trail for incredible views of the fjord and the surrounding nature.

Directions

Located a two to three hour drive from Anchorage International Airport.

Hotel Recommendation

Lina says, “Other than booking a cabin in Kenai Fjords National Park, book an RV for the ultimate experience and stay on the waterfront at one of the municipal campgrounds in town.”

Best cities to visit in the USA to escape extreme summer weather
San Fransisco, California (Photo courtesy of Umer Sayyam from Unsplash)

San Fransisco, California

By Paroma from Yr Of The Monkey

San Francisco, California, is one of the best cities in the United States to visit to escape the blistering summer heat. The best “small town with a large city” feel with a very un-California like year round mild weather, San Francisco will woo you with its European charm and natural beauty! Just remember to pack in a jacket, cause even in summer, San Francisco can be unnaturally chilly in the evenings!

Weather

Average high temperatures in June, July and August (September too) is low 70s. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

There is a lot to do, see and eat in San Francisco. Visit the murals in Clarion Alley and Balmy Alley in the Mission District, the largest and most vibrant neighborhood. Check out the beautiful Palace of Fine Arts in the Marina district. Then, enjoy an epic view of the Golden Gate Bridge from the Marina Greens. Many of San Fransisco’s parks have wonderful views.

Stop by San Francisco’s Ferry Building for the mega outdoor farmers market on Saturdays or simply explore the many stalls and stores inside for tasty Northern California goodies. Then, hitch a ride on our famous cable car to Fisherman’s Wharf via Chinatown and Russian Hill to see the sea lions sunbathing in Pier 39.

Overall, San Fransisco is a wonderful walking city with lots of lovely neighbourhoods to explore.

Directions

The fastest way to get to San Francisco is to fly into the SFO International Airport which is about 20 miles south of the city.

Hotel Recommendation

Paroma says, “When visiting San Francisco, I recommend staying either near Union Square since it is downtown with access to most bus lines (but it is quite expensive and pretty noisy since it is the most touristy part of town) or in a quieter part of town, such as Japantown. My favorites are Hotel Kabuki (Japantown) or Hotel Nikko (pup friendly hotel in downtown).”

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best places to visit in America to beat the summer heat
Columbia River Gorge, Oregon (Photo courtesy of Val from Voyages With Val)

Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

By Val from Voyages With Val

The Columbia River Gorge is a great destination in America to stay cool in the summer.

Weather

While the average high temperatures can get into the low 80s, it averages closer to the mid 70s in July and August, with mostly sunny, clear days. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

To cool down even more, go on one of the many waterfall hikes in the Columbia River Gorge. Latourell Falls Trail is one of the best waterfall hikes in the Gorge, leading to not one but two waterfalls over 3 miles.

Multnomah Falls is the most famous waterfall in the gorge at 620 feet tall. It is only steps from the parking lot, making it accessible for everyone.

The Vista House should also be one of your stops. It offers an amazing view of the Columbia River and surrounding hills.

Directions

To get to the Columbia River Gorge, fly into Portland Airport and drive only 14 miles west along I-84 to get to the beginning of the Scenic Area. The whole length of the Gorge is 80 miles and ends at The Dalles.

Hotel Recommendation

Val says, “Hood River is a great place to stay near the Gorge. Westcliff Lodge is a nice hotel in Hood River, overlooking the Columbia River Gorge.”

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best US destinations to visit to escape stifling summer heat.
Ouray, Colorado (Photo courtesy of Meg from Fox In The Forest)

Ouray, Colorado

By Meg from Fox In The Forest

If you’re looking for one of the best places to go in the USA to avoid extreme summer heat, then you can’t beat Ouray, Colorado. After all, this awesome mountain town is nestled deep within the San Juan Mountains.

Weather

Because of the area’s high altitude, temperatures never really go above 75 degrees. In the evenings, they can dip down into the high 40s. Just do yourself a favor and pack a warm clothes and a rain jacket if you visit in july or August since they can get rather rainy. There is no humidity.

Best Things To Do

Spend your time exploring the well-named  “Switzerland of America” and experience all of the best things to do in Ouray, Colorado. Start your visit by taking in the stellar views as you drive along both the San Juan Skyway and the Million Dollar Highway. 

Next, hike up to see ethereal waterfalls like Cascade Falls and Box Canyon Falls before getting creeped out in the nearby ghost town of Animas Forks. 

And if you wish to warm up, take a refreshing dip in either the Ouray or Orvis Hot Springs in nearby Ridgeway.

Directions

Ouray, Colorado is a fairly remote place and a long 5 1/2 hours drive from the international airport in Denver. 

Hotel Recommendation

Meg says, “Spend the night in the lovely Alp Lily Inn, where rooms come with their very own kitchenette.””

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Last Word

Your summer vacation does not have to be hiding indoors in front of the air conditioner trying to stay cool from high temperatures or unbearable humidity. There are lots of places in June, July and August in the USA where you can enjoy beautiful pleasant temperatures while spending time outside. Whether you prefer cities, towns, national or state parks, mild summer weather is available in many spectacular destinations.

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