After spending an entire winter dreaming of summer, it can suddenly feel like the warmer months have crept up before you’ve made any concrete plans—or maybe that’s just us. Either way, summer is a time to get inspired—and excited—to spend a lot more time outside, whether it be on the beach, beside a lake, or simply swinging in a hammock with the latest summer read. With all of that to look forward to, plus the roaring return of international travel, we’ve put together our annual guide to having fun this summer, aimed at steering you through June, July, August, and beyond.
There is plenty of inspiration to dive into—101 ideas on how to have fun, to be precise—but there’s also an abundance of intel for you to bookmark. Spent the past year hitting the trails? We tapped the pros for their favorite essentials to pack for day hikes. Feeling nostalgic for summer camp? We’ve rounded up Airbnbs that feel just like it—and spotlighted a rising trend of sleepaway experiences for LGBTQ+ adults. Craving water but plan to finally spend a summer in the Big Apple? We’ve rounded up the best public pools in New York City to cool off in.
Keep scrolling for all of these stories and more. And if you’ve discovered that you actually quite like staying at home after the last few years, don’t fret—we’ve got an entire story on how to make your backyard vacation-ready, too. —Lale Arikoglu
From a former Girl Scout lodge to an upstate New York compound, we’re pushing summer camp vibes to new limits.
From taking up rock climbing and glamping under the stars to using all those points and miles to finally leave the country again.
Cool off in pools across the boroughs this summer—no hotel day pass needed.
How these sleepaway camps, wilderness groups, and campgrounds are creating space for LGBTQ+ travelers.
Stay hydrated, comfortable, and safe on new trails this summer with these day hike essentials.
We asked professional surfers, resort staffers, swimsuit designers, and other beach aficionados how they fill their bags.