Emily Williams, dnata Travel’s resident globetrotter, reveals the best places to hop on a plane to this month
It’s peak season in Bali and despite its ever-growing popularity, the green paradise of Ubud is still an excellent place to escape to for a sense of calm. The Ubud District’s green rainforests and terraced rice paddies are among Bali’s most famous and picturesque landscapes. A treasure trove of cultural
landmarks, you can discover art galleries and museums, as well as some of the finest dining in Bali.
1 Visit Monkey Forest Ubud to see the temples, as well as the monkeys that live in the sanctuary, including the Balinese long-tailed monkey (macaque).
2 Open daily, Ubud Art Market is the place to go for artisan keepsakes, from sarongs to intricately carved wooden picture frames.
3 Grab your swimmies and head to Tegenungan Waterfall for a dip amid the lush jungle setting.
With its location on the Caspian Sea and its cooler temperatures, travellers are escaping to Baku for a city break closer to home this summer – it’s just a three-hour flight from Dubai. Azerbaijan’s capital is known for contemporary landmarks including the Zaha Hadid designed Heydar Aliyev Center and Flame Towers, an iconic trio of skyscrapers. The modern skyline is juxtaposed with its mediaeval walled city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
1 Make the 25km journey to Yanardagh (Burning Mountain), which is eternally ablaze due to the natural subterranean gas that seeps up to the surface.
2 Taste the traditional Plov – saffron-flavoured rice cooked with aromatic herbs, fried meat and vegetables.
3 Take a peek inside The Museum of Miniature Books in the old city, to see a novel collection amassed over 30 years.
The largest lake district in Europe, Finnish Lakeland (the land of a thousand lakes) is a beautiful summer holiday spot. Some of the world’s cleanest lakes can be found here, surrounded by an incredible backdrop of deep green forests and rolling hills. Stay in Hämeenlinna, just over an hours’ drive from Helsinki, which is surrounded by the lakes and national parks. Plus, it’s home to two impressive castles, a theme park, spas, eight golf courses and more.
1 For a charming way to explore, take a steamship cruise of Lake Saimaa.
2 Traverse the lakes at your own pace in a kayak – the water is at its warmest from June to August.
3 Test your skills at fishing, and you may even spot elks at the shore.
Known as the capital of southern Spain, Seville is famous for its flamenco dancing, local food markets, and gothic architecture. Alcázar of Seville, one of the oldest palaces still in use in the world, has been in the spotlight recently, having featured in Game of Thrones (the UNESCO World Heritage recognised palace complex is the setting for the Winter Gardens of Dorne). It’ll transport you into a fantasy world, complete with labyrinth to explore.
1 Savour the intense flavours of traditional tapas dishes, from white anchovies to snails. Simply hop from bar to bar for a delicious pit stop while sightseeing.
2 Admire the artisan ceramics that characterise the city, and spend your euros on some decorative
3 Awaken your duende by catching a flamenco performance at El Patio Sevillano.
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