9 Best Places to Visit in May (WORLDWIDE)

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Some of the best places to visit in May are touristy destinations that are usually overcrowded or expensive during their high season.

May is an excellent time of year for travel because, in many popular destinations, this is a month where things are either winding down or only just getting started. 

In the Caribbean, you can enjoy slashed prices on flights, hotels or cruises, because the rush of spring holidays are over, and the hurricane season has yet to begin.

In Canada, it’s the end of the ski season, while the summer peak season hasn’t quite arrived, giving travelers a multitude of outdoor or city-based opportunities to enjoy without the crowds. 

In Nepal, it’s a great time for hiking, and Everest Base Camp is very much open for business, while in Sri Lanka, you can enjoy the east coast without rain and without the crowds. 

It’s a great month for shoulder season travel, and to inspire your next adventure, here are the best places to visit in May!

Best Places to Visit in May

1. The Caribbean

The Caribbean is one of the best places to visit in May

The Caribbean is one of the best places to visit in May if you are looking to experience the beautiful islands without the crowds. 

Given its equatorial location, the Caribbean is a region that sees very little in the way of temperature fluctuations throughout the year, and that means that all year round, it’s warm.

May is no exception and temperatures across the islands average around 30 degrees Celsius, even in places like Cuba or the Bahamas which are found relatively further north.

High season in the Caribbean generally runs from December to April, and May is the start of the low season.

That means cut-price deals on usually expensive holiday resorts, while you can enjoy many of the beaches to yourself. The hurricane season arrives in June, but in May, the weather is still gloriously dry and sunny. 

There are plenty of islands and countries to choose from, and you can explore Antigua, go surfing in Jamaica, or take in the history of Puerto Rico.

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2. Nepal

Nepal is one of the best places to visit in April

If you’re an avid hiker, then one of the best places to visit in April is Nepal. This is the spring season in Nepal, but it also means that it’s hiking season. 

The main trekking season in Nepal, when it’s busiest, is later in the year between October and November.

While the summer months from June onwards is always rainy, and many trails can be closed due to the danger of landslides.

In May though, conditions are optimal. It’s not raining yet, and although it can be cold at altitude during the night, it’s still great weather for hiking during the day.

Everest Base Camp is a great place to visit in May, as this is the last month you can trek here before the monsoon arrives.

Annapurna isn’t quite so busy as the later trekking season in April, and also makes for a fantastic circuit to hike.

Alternatively, you can also visit the lowlands, and go on safari in Chitwan National Park, or simply hang out and explore the history, food and culture in cities such as Kathmandu or Pokhara. 

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3. Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is one of the best places to visit in April

Staying in Asia, one of the best places to visit in May is Sri Lanka. The island nation experiences distinct wet and dry seasons that are dependent on the annual monsoons that hit the coastline.

These monsoons occur at different times of the year and affect different sides of the country.

In May, the most popular areas are actually in the midst of a monsoon, as the south-west coast is hit by heavy rainfall.

The east coast of Sri Lanka, however, is perfectly dry during May, as the area experiences the worst of its monsoon later in the year.

The east coast isn’t as developed or as touristy as the south-west anyway, and you’ll find the beautiful beaches of Arugam Bay are great for living that laid back lifestyle: boogie boarding, and enjoying the sun, sea and sand. 

If you want to get even further off the beaten track, then head north along the east coast, and head up towards Trincomalee where you can find outstanding scenery and fascinating local history.

Remember that things on this side of Sri Lanka aren’t as developed as the touristy areas in the south-west, but that makes it a much more authentic and vibrant experience, so catch it while it’s still there!

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4. Australia

Australia is one of the best places to visit in April

In May it’s most definitely the shoulder season in Australia, but it’s also the perfect time to head north and to experience the best of tropical northern Australia.

It’s getting cold in the south, as the season transitions into winter, but you can take the chance to visit iconic cities such as Sydney or Melbourne and to enjoy the sights and attractions without the crowds of the summer high season.

You’ll find that it’s cold and rainy but head to Perth on the west coast if you still want sunshine.  

The north is the place to be though. Australia is a vast country, and north of Brisbane, the climate is either wet or dry.

The winter season is when the rains stop, and May is the start of this dry period of the year, when there’s no chance of cyclones and when the skies are clear. 

It’s a great time to visit Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef before the high season here begins a month later in June.

If you’re feeling intrepid, then take a road trip even further north, to visit Darwin and the tropical rainforests, or to explore the empty, yet beautiful arid deserts of the Kimberleys or the Pilbara.

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5. Canada

Canada is one of the best places to visit in April

In North America, one of the best places to visit in April is Canada. Here you can catch the country’s best outdoor attractions before the summer high season begins. 

Canada has a long ski season, especially in popular resort areas such as Whistler, and May is usually the last chance to hit the slopes before the snow melts.

This is the end of the ski season, so that means smaller crowds and lower prices too. 

It can be cold and rainy in many locations, but the cities are a good place to visit, as you can take in the urban sights in iconic destinations such as Toronto or Vancouver.

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6. Portugal

Portugal is one of the best places to visit in April

Portugal enjoys a lovely, warm climate through much of the year. May is the perfect mix of sunshine and comfortable sightseeing temperatures. It’s not too hot yet in Portugal, and it’s definitely the low season too. 

Get some great deals on the Algarve coast, where you can relax on the beaches and swim in the ocean, or head to the cities to enjoy the cultural and historic sights without the summer hordes. 

Lisbon is particularly nice this time of year, while if you want to get off the beaten track, consider exploring the more northern city of Porto and the surrounding Douro Valley.

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7. Greece

Greece is one of the best places to visit in April

In Europe, Greece is another popular destination that’s already enjoying fabulous weather in May.

While this a country that can be quite overwhelming during the incredibly busy summer season, peak season has yet to really begin in May.

This is a great opportunity to island-hop in the Aegean Sea, and to enjoy great weather, yet to avoid the party crowds that arrive when the package deals begin in June.

Take the chance to explore islands such as Mykonos or Santorini, and to see a more local and authentic side of the culture and history.

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8. Panama

Panama is one of the best places to visit in April

Central America is entering into its long rainy season in May, which usually lasts well into December across the region, but it’s still a great time to enjoy a country like Panama, which is yet to see the full force of the rains.

If you don’t mind having to endure the odd rain shower, then in Panama in May you can enjoy destinations with fewer crowds than in the winter months that preceded.

Enjoy the culture and historic sights of Panama City, and head to the increasingly popular San Blas islands, before the seas become too rough and rainy. 

There’s a lot more to do in Panama as well, and you can visit the iconic Panama Canal or head into the rainforests to learn more about indigenous cultures. 

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9. Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan is one of the best places to visit in April

In Central Asia, one of the best places to visit in May is Uzbekistan. The post-Soviet country is going from strength to strength when it comes to tourism, and now is the time to see it before it changes too much.

The country is opening up rapidly to tourism ever since there was a change of regime after the longstanding president died. Sweeping reforms have since seen an increase in tourist numbers as e-visas have been introduced and the currency reformed.

Explore the ancient Silk Road cities of Khiva, Samarkand and Bukhara, and enjoy the surprisingly eclectic yet uniquely Soviet sights of the capital, Tashkent.

May is the best time to be here because the weather is perfect. By the end of May, summer is beginning, and that means brutally hot temperatures across the country. 

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Need More Help Planning?

So you think you know the in’s and outs of planning the ultimate vacation? There is more to it than deciding which websites to look at and what time you should go.

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We travel full time, 365 days a year and we have to find deals to amazing vacation locations all the time. From simple locations like the Florida Keys, Iceland, and Europe to some of the most remote places in the world like Antarctica. We know travel inside and out. 

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About Lina Stock

Lina is an award-winning photographer and writer that has been exploring the world since 2001. She has traveled to 100 countries on all 7 continents. Member: SATW, NATJA, ATTA, ITWA

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