Ah summer vacation! It is time to start dreaming of the hot summer sun, new adventures and time away from schedules and commitments. Summer is right around the corner. Are you ready to start planning? We’ve rounded up 5 spots we think you should consider for this year’s summer vacation.

Choose Culture! Spend Summer Vacation in Lisbon, Portugal

I returned from this favourite corner of the globe recently and memories of my days spent exploring castles, city life and fine tastes still remain. Lisbon is one of my favourite cities in the world, and Portugal is a country you won’t soon forget. Make it a family vacation and head to the Algarve for beaches and surf after you take in the culture and sights of Lisbon. If you’re after a luxury family stay visit www.martinhal.com for special offers.

Plan your trip.

Tip: Check out Portugal’s Pousadas – a chain of historic hotels. You can stay in converted castles and monasteries. It is truly a unique experience. Learn more.

Choose the Wild Coast! Spend Summer Vacation on Fogo Island, Newfoundland and Labrador

Fogo Island is another beautiful place to experience the hospitality of Newfoundland – Fogo Island is the largest offshore island on Newfoundland’s vast coast. It is home to 11 communities ready to welcome you. Explore the coast of the Atlantic, get close with nature and relax in luxury at the Fogo Island inn.

Plan your trip.

Tip: Book your trip early as accommodation is limited on the island. The Fogo Island Inn is beautiful. But can be pricey for some travellers. Try the Tilting Harbour B & B as an alternative.

Choose Adventure! Spend Summer Vacation on the Danube River

Set sail on the Danube River this summer. River cruises are becoming increasingly popular, especially with families. While there are many destinations to choose from, we chose to spotlight the Danube River for its appeal.

The river flows along the borders of 10 countries. On the Avalon Waterways cruise you’ll visit spectacular cities like Vienna, Budapest and Prague. You’ll see old-country villages, castles, museums and medieval fortresses. There is no shortage of sights and your home on the boat will give you the comfort and convenience of having a homebase.

Plan your trip.

Tip: Resist the urge to overpack for your river cruise but research any dress code requirements for the places you are visiting.

Choose the Sun! Spend Summer Vacation in Negril, Jamaica

This is one of my favourite countries – for food, culture and of course, those gorgeous beaches. There are many towns in Jamaica that offer resort experiences, but Negril is one of the best. It boasts the famous seven-mile beach, with many resorts and family-run accommodations to choose from.

Plan your trip

Tip: Some of the resorts in Negril are for adults only. If you are travelling with your family, be sure to look for a family-friendly resort option, like Beaches Negril.

Choose a Park! Spend Summer Vacation with Parks Canada

While not so much a singular destination, it is worth noting that Canada is celebrating 150 years and with this amazing birthday, Parks Canada is offering free admission to Canada’s National Parks, Historic Sites and Marine Conservation areas. Whether you are a resident of Canada, or contemplating a visit, this free pass is incentive to get out and explore the natural wonder of this country.

Get your pass here.

Tip: There are more than 40 National parks across Canada. Find one and plan your trip

Now the big question: where will you spend summer this year? What is your favourite summer destination?