Find our travel expert recommendations below
With the eagerly anticipated onset of summer and a bank holiday double whammy, there’s a whole lot to get excited about in May. Take advantage of those long weekends and start your summer early, making use of the additional short-haul flight routes added for the peak season. This time of year is great for an active holiday in Africa or Australia, or for visiting the European hotspots that can become inundated with crowds in the height of summer.
May is a wonderful time to visit Italy: you should be ahead of the crowds but still able to experience the alluring scenery in all its glory. Days are long and the sun should be shining from the Alps in the north right down to Sicily in the south. Indulge in the idyllic bougainvillea-clad retreats on Lake Como (a favourite with the stars), channel the Renaissance in beautiful Florence, or rent a convertible and zoom along the gorgeous Amalfi Coast.
The Mediterranean is wonderfully pleasant at this time of year, and the swathes of summer crowds are yet to arrive on popular Greek islands such as Crete and Santorini. Ultra-luxury resorts such as the Blue Palace in Crete or the Sani in Halkidiki often have brilliant offers in spring, particularly for families, which are well worth keeping an eye out for. Athens is also wonderful in May, offering mild and long sunny days for exploring its ancient metropolis.
It might be winter Down Under, but it never really gets chilly, and there are excellent holiday opportunities in its northern region. It’s dry season up in the Kimberley, where you could take the family on a camping holiday and enjoy crocodile-spotting boat trips amidst its dramatic rugged cliffs and gorges, or retreat to a luxury lodge hidden away in this very much untouched and unspoilt landscape.
Look no further than Botswana for an African safari holiday in May. Despite being in its peak season, safari crowds are few and far between in Botswana, so you won’t be jostling with multiple jeeps to compete for prime viewing positions. Less vegetation and drier weather also means wildlife centres around the watering holes, making animals much easier to spot. Don’t miss the picture-perfect Okavango Delta for its world-class wildlife offerings, as well as the spectacular, vast wilderness of the Kalahari Desert.
May is seen as a time of rebirth in Zambia, as most of the camps open for the new safari season after the lengthy summer rains when their remote location makes them inaccessible. The plains are still lush and green as a result of the rains and visitors can see large herds of elephants and buffaloes enjoying the abundance of food available to them. Of course predators are never far away in Zambia, with lions staying especially close to the herds of buffaloes. It is also a superb time of year to round off your trip with a few days at the spectacular Victoria Falls.
For more suggestions on where to go in May, make an enquiry online today or give our experts a call on 020 7337 9010