Summer is the season for fun in the sun, but there鈥檚 so much to see and do beyond the beach. Looking to plan an adventure in a place that isn鈥檛 totally taken over by tourists? Consider a vacation that鈥檚 not on the beach but will still allow you to score聽a little quiet R&R, soak up the vitamin D, and explore some of the world鈥檚 most photo-worthy national parks, major metros, and cultural hubs. We talked to the team at Topdeck travel to handpick 10 unique locales to explore solo or with your BFFs this summer. Here鈥檚 to making warm-weather (non-beach) memories you鈥檒l cherish forever.

Mt. Fuji in Japan

1. Japan:聽Love traditional culture mixed with a modern appeal? The Topdeck聽team says nowhere beats Japan. 鈥淲alk through beautiful temples, bask in the views from Mt. Fuji, and try Japanese beer 鈥 you鈥檒l truly feel like you鈥檙e in another world,鈥 they tell us. Don鈥檛 forget to pencil in a couple of days just for Tokyo; the expansive city is chock-full of streets, museums, and ultra-cool shops you鈥檒l want to experience and explore.

Victoria Falls

2. Zimbabwe:聽鈥淔orget Niagara Falls 鈥 you can find the largest waterfall in the world at Victoria Falls, between Zimbabwe and Zambia,鈥 the Topdeck聽team reveals. 鈥淪pot every character from The Lion King on an African safari in Matobo National Park and get a serious adrenaline boost at the Instagram-worthy聽Gorge Swing.鈥

Copenhagen, Denmark

3. Scandinavia:聽A visit to some of the happiest countries in the world may be just the summer vacation you need! 鈥淒iscover the serious fashion in Stockholm, visit the fjords of Norway, and wander the colorful streets of Copenhagen,鈥 the folks at Topdeck suggest. Want to hit 鈥檈m all at once? Consider booking a scenic cruise that鈥檒l let you spend a day or two in several key cities. You鈥檒l be hard-pressed to find a more pristine and positive-feeling place anywhere in the world.

Singapore city skyline

4. Singapore:聽Yes, there are beaches in Singapore; however, we hear that the real draw of this Asian island is the actual city. 鈥淓xplore the lantern-lined streets, walk through the picturesque Gardens of the Bay nature park, and spend hours eating famous dishes like Or Luak, Char Kway Teow, and Satay in the Chinatown Food Street,鈥 the team advises.


5. Morocco:聽It鈥檚 not your imagination 鈥 people are flocking to Morocco for inspiration. The Topdeck聽team has some advice on how to聽best do this destination: 鈥淭o catch the magical vibes of the Middle East, visit the Red City of Marrakech, stop in Casablanca and the UNESCO [United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization] World Heritage capital of Rabat, and spend a night in the Sahara Desert, where you can ride camels.鈥 Talk about an experience that鈥檚 truly unlike any other!

Paragliding over Queenstown, New Zealand

6. Queenstown:聽鈥淲hile we鈥檙e just approaching spring and summer here in the US, down in New Zealand, winter is well on its way,鈥 the team reminds us. 鈥淭he South Island is a perfect place for adrenaline junkies; you鈥檒l have awesome opportunities to explore ice caves at Fox Glacier, bungee jump, or hang glide in Queenstown.鈥 If you鈥檙e a more relaxed type of traveler, plan to bask in the beauty of the fjords at Fiordland National Park.

Kings Canyon in Australia

7. Australia:聽You might think beaches when you picture Australia鈥檚 coast, but聽Topdeck tells us the Northern Territory is an underrated region you should have on your radar. 鈥淭his section of Australia is famous for its views,鈥 the team shares. 鈥淐atch one of the best sunsets you鈥檒l ever see in Ululu, walk among the more than 30 red sandstone giants in the Valley of the Winds, and try a scenic helicopter flight over Kings Canyon.鈥 Count us in.

Glasgow cathedral in Glasgow, Scotland

8. The UK:London is top-of-mind for many, thanks to the royals,聽but the surrounding areas are just as picturesque as England鈥檚 best-known metro. 鈥淓xplore beyond the limits of the cosmopolitan city to find the quaint and historic cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow. Tour Medieval castles and view gothic architecture before hitting up a local pub for fish and chips or a hearty stew,鈥 Topdeck suggests. History buffs, we see your heart eyes.

Denali National Park in Alaska

9. Alaska:聽You can soak up 20 hours of sunshine a day in the summer in Alaska, which makes it an epic spot for nature lovers. There are tons of incredible things to see and do with all that extra daylight too. 鈥淭our Denali National Park and keep your eyes open to see moose, grizzlies, sheep, and more. Take a canoe out in the Tangle Lakes to spot beavers, and find glaciers and humpback whales in Prince William Sound,鈥 the team advises. Alaska is also home to some of America鈥檚 most beautiful and quiet drives, which makes it ideal for a road trip.

Banff National Park in Canada

10. Canada鈥檚 Rocky Mountains:聽鈥淓ven if you鈥檝e seen the American Rockies, the views from the Canadian Rockies will blow your mind,鈥 the Topdeck聽team promises. 鈥淔rom the crystal clear waters of Banff National Park and Lake Louise to the Columbia Icefield and the highest peak in the Rockies, Mount Robson, there won鈥檛 be enough film or memory in the world to capture the beauty of this amazing place.鈥 Maximize your fun by taking full advantage of available outdoor activities, like camping, hiking, kayaking, scenic walks, and more.

Have you been to any of these non-beach destinations? Show us your best shots on Instagram by tagging @BritandCo!

(Photos via Getty)