The hottest and coldest holiday spots to hit up this July
Do you escape the winter or embrace it? Whichever way you swing, there’s a holiday destination for you.
July is the middle of winter and peak snow season in Australia. It's also the beginning of the new financial year, which means one thing: tax return season.
If you’re planning to put that money towards a well-deserved break, if you're seeking warmer climates or you want to hit the powder running, we’ve got the intel on the best places to get away to this month.
1. Best budget destination: The Gold Coast
They don’t call Queensland Australia’s sunshine state for nothing.
Basking in near-perpetual sunshine year-round, the Gold Coast is one of the most accessible destinations for sun seekers during the winter months.
Despite the sunshine, July is the Gold Coast's off-peak month, with return flights as low as $110, according to Skiddoo.
- July weather: 12.5-21.5°C, winter
- Best for: Families, beach breaks
- Learn more: Gold Coast travel guide
2. Best city to visit: New York City
4th of July parties, performances in the park and summer festivals.
Summer in New York officially kicks off on 21 June, so by July you can bet your bottom dollar that the sun worshipers will be out in full swing.
If you happen to be in town earlier in the month, you won’t be able to escape the 4th of July celebrations. If you land later, there’s a bevvy of summer activities to still enjoy, including Shakespeare in the Park, the Panorama Music Festival and Rooftop Cinema Club.
- July weather: 22-26°C, summer
- Best for: Sightseeing, culture
- Learn more: Top New York City attractions
3. Best for snow sports: Queenstown
Arguably the powder capital of Oceania.
Queenstown is a skier and snowboarder’s dream. Three snow resorts surround the city, each receiving heavy praise from some of the best in the biz.
June to August is Queenstown's snow season, with July being one of the most coveted times to catch the freshest snow. Mind you, this means it is peak season so if you want to avoid the crowds, it may be better to hold off until August/September to hit the slopes.
- July weather: 4-8°C, winter
- Best for: Adventure seekers, families
- Learn more: Queenstown travel guide
4. Best for events: Spain
No one does a festival like Spain.
July is packed with European festivals, but if we had to choose the destination that boasts the most, it has to be Spain.
This month sees music festivals such as Bilbao BBK and Benicassim take centre stage, as well cultural festivals such as the infamous Running of the Bulls in Pamplona and the GREC Festival, which is a mix of dance, theatre and circus performances inside an open-air Greek theatre.
- July weather: 25-30°C, summer
- Best for: Sightseeing, culture
- Learn more: European summer festival guide
5. Best surprise destination: Croatia
Winter is coming… but not to Croatia.
July marks the release of Season 7 of Game of Thrones and if you’re a fan, you’ll know that Croatia is home to a number of its filming locations, including King’s Landing, which is Dubrovnik's walled Old Town.
Even if you’re not a fan, Croatia is still destined to become a hot topic this month, as it’s the beginning of its summer season. From July to August, resort towns come to life, boats set sail along the Adriatic Sea and island hopping is always on the cards.
- July weather: 24-27°C, summer
- Best for: Beach breaks, families, Game of Thrones fanatics
- Learn more: Croatia sailing adventure guide
Top July events
- 4th of July: The USA’s Independence Day is celebrated throughout the nation with fireworks and parties that run long into the night.
- Bastille Day: Friday 14 July is Bastille Day. This is a national day in France to mark the beginning of the French Revolution. It is celebrated with parties and fireworks throughout the nation.
When’s the best time in July to take a holiday?
July tends to be a quieter period for travellers around Australia, however, it’s predicted to be busiest at the beginning of the month due to the winter school holidays and workers taking some time off post-end of financial year. If you intend to travel domestically, aim for days later in the month to avoid peak prices and crowds.
Internationally, July is peak season for many countries in the northern hemisphere as their big summer break falls in July and August. While it’s an ideal time to partake in festivals, it’s also an expensive time to visit. We suggest you aim to travel earlier in the month, before the holidaymakers settle in and prices begin to skyrocket.