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Five Destinations to Avoid This Summer and Where to Go Instead

Five Destinations to Avoid This Summer and Where to Go Instead

You’ve been dreaming of a white sand and turquoise water beach vacation, but imagine getting to paradise and it’s overrun with tourists. Or you took a summer trip to explore nature; however, instead of breathing in the fresh forest air, your lungs take in smog and congestion. 

Many popular summer destinations suffer from over-tourism, making them feel as crowded as a mall during the holidays. If you want a truly relaxing or adventurous summer vacation, there are specific locations you’ll want to avoid. Likewise, there are destinations slightly off the radar offering abundant beauty and culture. 

Destinations to avoid this summer

1. Lake Tahoe, California

If you’re a native Californian or a frequent visitor, you know Lake Tahoe is a top destination. However, did you know that it made the 2023 No Travel List for Fodors?

Overpopulation is the main reason this city made the list. Many people moved to the lake during the pandemic to escape the bigger cities. While this seemed like a good idea then, it has caused the area some problems. Now Lake Tahoe residents have to deal with higher rates of traffic and larger amounts of pollution. 

Although saving Lake Tahoe for another trip is a bright idea, the local tourism board still welcomes guests. With tourism making up about 60% of the economy, officials say that tourists are still welcome; however, it’s best to use alternative means of transportation such as walking or biking. 

2. Venice, Italy

If you’ve seen major films in the past decades, such as Casanova, Casino Royale, and Indiana Jones: The Last Crusade, you’ve probably considered a trip to Venice, Italy. This idealized city is one of the country’s most picturesque and romantic cities — and you shouldn’t go there. In short, everything is high during the summer, including the temperature, prices, and number of people. Temperatures can increase to the 80s and 90s Fahrenheit. Local businesses take advantage of the high season by raising prices.  Also, getting a decent picture will be impossible with all the crowds surrounding the monument you want to photograph.  

Don’t worry, your Italy dream vacation can still happen, but it’s best to go in April and May or September and October.

3. Bangkok, Thailand

Whether for the floating meal trays or the ability to live in luxury for low cost, thousands of travelers have flocked to Thailand. In fact, in 2022, Thailand received 11.15 million foreign visitors. If that number isn’t a reason to seek other destinations, then maybe the closure of national parks and famous coves will sway you. 

4. Maui, Hawaii

Hawaii is a common dream destination, and they are not immune to over-tourism. In addition to an overload of tourists, Hawaii is facing another problem.

The island is currently struggling to provide enough water for all its residents. There have been water restrictions on non-essential water use that, unfortunately, not every resort has followed. Thus many tourist spots have been taking water away from residents.

You don’t want to be the bad guy on your vacation, so skip Hawaii this year and keep reading for other tropical getaways.

5. Amsterdam, Netherlands

This Dutch city has become famous for its cannabis coffee shops and exciting nightlife. However, before you book your trip, consider a few things. 

Amsterdam has become flooded with foreigners. According to ResponsibleTravel.com, even tourists have complained that they are most likely to see more tourists than natives on the streets. 

As a result, the city started to fall victim to homogenization, which means because of the overflow of tourists, the city is beginning to lose the unique characteristics that once attracted visitors in the first place. 

Better places to travel in Summer 2023

Instead of Lake Tahoe, go to Shasta Lake 

Shasta Lake, located in northern California, offers the same lake advantages as Lake Tahoe without the crowds. In addition to typical water fun such as jet skis and sailboats, you can go fishing along the 370-mile coast. For even more adventure, you can explore the 250 million-year-old caves.

Instead of Venice, go to Sardinia 

Sardinia is the second-largest Italian Island. Although it’s part of Italy, locals say it has a different vibe than most Italian cities. Nonetheless, it has much to offer, such as great food and wine, unique wildlife life, and amazing beaches.

Instead of Thailand, go to Malaysia

You can get all the lush and beautiful landscapes typically seen in Thailand in Malaysia. This hidden gem offers secluded beaches, the stunning Pulau Tiga National Park, and many small islands to explore. 

In addition to stunning natural environments, the country offers modern architecture, diverse culture, and plenty of outdoor activities such as hiking.

Instead of Hawaii, go to St. Lucia

St. Lucia is a West Indies island with stunning landscapes and friendly people. Like Hawaii, the land offers volcanic backgrounds, such as the Pitons. These two volcanic plugs inspired the local beer, Piton. It is a delicious and cool drink to sip while laying on one of St. Lucia’s breathtaking beaches.  

Direct flights from Miami, New York, Boston, and Philadelphia are available and are usually around 4-hours long.

Instead of going to Amsterdam, go to Haarlem

A simple 15-minute train ride west of Amsterdam will take you to Haarlem — a city with just as much charm and fewer crowds. You can explore on foot, pop into one of the city’s many shops and cafes, and spend your days visiting local museums and enjoy your evenings walking alongside the river. Or you can try a boat ride on the local canals. 

For the summer of 2023, where will you travel to? Whether you’re traveling near or far, do so safely and responsibly. 

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