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Inspiration for August holidays

August    

August
Take the opportunity to head to the mountains, or enjoy a more leisurely holiday by the coast.

 

Follow the former emperor’s lead in Austria
Hallstatt, Salzkammergut
Emperor Franz Josef, who ruled Austria from 1848-1916, had a summer residence in Salzkammergut, Austria’s lake district, and it’s easy to see why he might have been attracted here: the lakes not only combine with the steep mountains around them to create astonishing, fjord-like scenery, but also provide a plentiful supply of delicious fish as well as providing a means of cooling off on hot days. Although it’s unlikely he explored by bike, we recommend that you do, as it’s a great way of exploring several of the area’s lakes in just a few days.
Head to Switzerland’s Bernese Oberland
Lake Oeschinensee, Bernese Oberland
The Belle Epoque Hotel Victoria in Kandersteg is one of our most popular hotels for snow holidays, and is no less appealing in summer. Six months on from its busiest winter month, there is once again a pleasant bustle in the village, although walkers now explore accompanied by the chirruping of grasshoppers and crickets rather than the soft crunch of snow underfoot, and the waters of idyllically situated Lake Oeschinensee, usually frozen in winter, are now an inviting turquoise colour and dotted with pedalos and swimmers.
Travel by train beyond the Iron Curtain
Korcula
As in many European cities, August sees the business travellers outnumbered by people travelling purely for pleasure to the German cities of Berlin, Leipzig and Dresden. Fewer people dashing about to meetings means the atmosphere is more relaxed (and the hotels cheaper, too!), making this the month to dawdle through the streets, stopping to admire the iconic landmarks as you follow our self-guided walking tours through each of these three enthralling cities.
Cycle past orchards laden with fruit in northern Italy
Ripe apples
If you can’t visit Italy’s fruit-growing South Tyrol region during blossom time (early May), then arguably the second-best time for this gentle but scenic cycling holiday is late August or September, by which time the trees are hanging heavy with apples and plums and yet more are on sale at ad-hoc wayside stalls. We recommend that you take full advantage and buy some each day so that you’ve got something to snack on when you inevitably stop and park up your bikes to drink in the glorious mountain views.
Swim in the Adriatic off the shores of Korčula
Korcula
For plentiful hot sunshine, head to Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast and explore islands such as Korčula, which measures barely 70 kilometres from its easternmost point to its western shoreline. Spend your mornings exploring the island’s superbly preserved medieval capital and timeless villages, or strolling across expanses of rosemary and through silver-green olive groves. In the heat of the afternoon, cool off in the crystal-clear waters or hire a boat and potter around some of the nearby islets.
Experience the Tyroleans’ famously warm hospitality
Walking in the Leutasch Valley, Tyrol
Besides the picturesque Alpine scenery, the great feature of our holidays in the Austrian Tyrol is the high standard of accommodation. Whether you choose our hotel-to-hotel Leutasch Valley walk or our centred-based Lake Achensee & its Mountains walk, you stay in 4-star hotels of great character where you experience first-hand the warm hospitality for which the Tyrol is renowned. After a wonderful day’s walking across grassy slopes and over panoramic passes, cool off with a swim – all our hotels have their own pool, or you can even bathe in some of the lakes.
Discover hidden Italy and Slovenia
River Soca
In the far north-east of Italy lies Friuli, a spectacular region which, despite producing some of the country’s finest white wines, is relatively little-known. Cross the border via Matajur’s 1,643-metre peak – a fantastic walk that rewards you with one of the best vistas of the Julian Alps – and you discover an equally dramatic and enchanting corner of Slovenia. The turquoise waters of the River Soča run through a wild-feeling valley where there are not only natural pools for bathing, but also faster stretches suitable for more adrenaline-filled activities such as white-water rafting.
Escape the crowds in France’s Massif Central
Auvergne
Even in August, there are places where you can escape the crowds. Little-known outside France, the ancient province of the Auvergne is one such quiet corner – you might not see another foreigner all week, and, while it’s true that you’ll encounter French holidaymakers on the peaks that are accessible by road or cable car, you’ll otherwise find the paths along broad ridges and past eerily beautiful volcanic peaks to be wonderfully quiet, save for the gentle clanging of bells worn by the red Salers cows.
See the arrival of autumn in Norway
Near Flam
August is a month of transition in Norway’s western fjords. Travel at the start of the month and you’ll find a pleasant bustle and full timetable of ferries. Travel at the end of the month, however, and you’ll find it much quieter (though there are still plenty of ferries). In the south, the fruit harvest gets into full swing – you’ll see roadside stalls selling cherries and apples as you explore Hardangerfjord – while in the north of the region, the first leaves are beginning to change colour. Further north still, in the Lofotens, autumn has well and truly arrived by mid-August, with even more vivid colours.