With the European summer in full swing, August is naturally a popular time to visit the continent. Consider the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, where the long, bright August evenings will provide ample time for getting acquainted with their historic capitals. Or choose Norway, where warm weather and seemingly endless sunshine affords prime conditions for exploring the great outdoors. Alternatively, the safari parks of Kenya and Zimbabwe beckon, as the dry season coaxes out wildlife amid mild temperatures and clear skies.
Best destinations to visit in August
The Baltic States
The Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have an undeniable winter charm, but for those looking to venture beyond the sauna, the region is arguably best enjoyed during the summer. August is one of the sunniest months, providing pleasant conditions for exploring the historical cities of Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius. Alternatively, travel through the thriving countryside, exploring the lakes, castles, palaces and gardens that dot the landscape. A variety of cultural festivals take place in the region including the Birgitta Festival, a music event usually held within the ruins of a monastery in Tallinn; and the Riga City Festival in Latvia’s capital.
August is a popular time to visit Kenya, as it’s generally sunny and dry, so we recommend booking well in advance. Spotting wildlife tends to be easy as animals flock to the diminished waterholes. At this time of year, around two million wildebeest migrate into the Masai Mara, accompanied by zebras and other grazers. Big cats and other predators make their pounce, often leading to thrilling viewing. Kenya is excellent for birding year-round, and at the tail end of August you may just catch the arrival of species migrating from Europe. Lake Nakuru and Lake Bogoria are great for spotting colourful flamingos, while Lake Naivasha is home to giraffes, impala and hippos. The low rainfall and humidity on the Kenyan coast provide ideal conditions for water-based activities.
August is one of the driest months in Zimbabwe, and the country’s wildlife gathers at permanent watering holes in easy sight of safari goers. Amid comfortable temperatures, experience the rich flora and fauna of Hwange National Park, or seek out leopard, rhino and ancient San rock art in the undulating Matobo Hills National Park. This is a popular time to visit the world-famous Victoria Falls, as the lower level of the Zambezi River exposes more of its eye-catching rock formations, Devil’s Pool opens to the daring visitors willing to take a dip, and rafting season begins.
Norway in August promises long, sunny days and comfortable summer temperatures – ideal for venturing into the great outdoors. This Scandinavian country stuns with its dramatic scenery, from the glittering fjords and imposing mountains to the long, rugged coast. Soak up this beauty on a cruise, hike, or rail ride – such as on the famous Flam Railway, which carves through sublime fjordland. The cities are also at their most vibrant during the summer, when locals toast the weather with utepils (‘outdoor beer’) and fire up the barbecues, and freshly picked berries are sold kerbside.