Few things are better than the first summer road trip of the year — and June is an ideal time to travel to many locations across the country. Van enthusiasts really can’t go wrong no matter where they decide to adventure during this magical month, but some places have more to offer during June than others. Here’s a list of the top van destinations for June of 2022.
Washington’s San Juan Islands
June is an ideal time to explore Northwest Washington’s remote and scenic San Juan Islands. The Washington State Ferry system makes accessing the islands with an RV easy and fun. Daytime temperatures in June in the San Juan Islands are typically in the upper 60s, and nights are chilly enough that travelers should plan to pack several sweaters. Because of their relatively northern position compared to most of the lower forty-eight states, sunrise comes early in the San Juans, and sunsets are long and lingering. The San Juans are also home to several resident pods of orca whales, so visitors should bring along their cameras and binocular.
As Oregon’s northernmost coastal community that’s also situated on the banks of the Columbia River, Astoria’s climate is similar to that of the San Juan Islands, with temperatures in June rarely rising above the high 60s. Maritime history buffs particularly enjoy visiting Astoria — as the first American settlement west of the Rocky Mountain range, Astoria has a long legacy as a port city as well as a commercial fishing hub. The local riverfront still features many of the original cannery buildings, and they now house unique eateries, shops, and other eclectic, independently-owned businesses. The riverfront is easily accessible via a pedestrian boardwalk.
California’s Lost Coast
The Pacific Northwest coastal magic continues south of Oregon in Northern California’s Lost Coast. Redwood National Park is just one of the many options for those wishing to immerse themselves in the natural beauty provided by the rugged coastline, colossal stands of giant coastal redwood trees, wild rivers and streams, rolling meadows, and oak savannahs. The areas also features quaint communities with Victorian architecture and numerous art galleries and other independently owned boutique businesses.
Homestead National Historical Park, Nebraska
As its name implies, Homestead National Historical Park provides visitors with plenty of opportunities to learn about the Homestead Act and how it shaped the region. The Heritage Center features interactive, state-of-the-art exhibits on topics such as the Homestead Act’s on agriculture, immigration, and industrialization as well as those designed to educate the public about the area’s prairie ecosystem and indigenous tribes. Outdoor activities include hiking, picnicking, and birdwatching. June temperatures range from the mid-80s during the day and the low 60s after sunset.
Glacier National Park, Montana
Moving inland to Montana, Glacier National Park also offers abundant natural beauty, and for those who’d prefer to avoid the crowds, June is a particularly good time visit because most people prefer to schedule their trips to this park for July and August. Although the weather can be changeable here in June, and daytime highs rarely get above the high 60s and nights can get below freezing, walking a path next to an alpine meadow overflowing with late spring wildflowers makes it worth it. Waterfalls are also incredible this time of year because they’re fed by melting snow, and many wildlife species are more visible because they haven’t yet moved to the backcountry for the summer and early fall.
Space Coast, Florida
Featuring 33 miles of unspoiled beaches, Florida’s Space Coast includes Cape Canaveral and the Kennedy Space Center, so there are abundant space-themed activities and businesses. Community festivals are commonplace in Space Coast towns, with many participating in regular Friday Fests. The Space Coast Jazz Society hosts monthly live performances, and many of the area’s historic downtown cores feature regular mural walks for the purpose of enjoying bright, beautiful murals that were created by talented local artists. With average daytime temperatures in the 80s and nighttime temperatures in the 70s, many feel that June weather on the Space Coast is just right.
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
June visitors to Shenandoah National Park enjoy pleasant daytime temperatures in the low 70s and slightly chilly nighttime temperatures in the low 50s. Stargazing is a popular activity in this park thanks to its remote distance from urban centers and relatively high elevation, and guided twilight hiking is available for those who want to walk under a blanket of summer stars. The park contains over 500 miles of trails, so there’s something for every preference and level of ability. Roots music fans should plan to visit during the first weekend in June so they can enjoy the Graves Mountain Music Festival that occurs annually at a 1,100 farm that borders the park.
Lake Placid, New York
Boating, hiking, mountain biking, fishing, peace and quiet, pleasant weather, world-class golfing — June in the Adirondacks has it all. When travelers need a break from outdoor physical activity, Lake Placid offers a vibrant art and cultural scene. The village of Lake Placid is a classic mountain town with a historic downtown with plenty of independent restaurants and shops. June temperatures
Green Mountain National Forest, Vermont
Green Mountain National Forest is known for its 900 miles of multiuse trails, outstanding campgrounds, diversity of wildlife and native plants, and wide variety of available activities. Besides biking, fishing, and hiking, visitors can pan for gold in the creeks, collect rocks, go boating and swimming, and explore the over 2,000 historical and archaeological sites within the forest. Typical June weather in this area hovers around a pleasant 70 degrees during the day and drops to the mid-40s at night.
The Maine Coast
Scenic lighthouses, historic fishing villages, and an abundance of iconic lobster and other fresh seafood make the Maine Coast worth the trip at any time of the year, but June has a special magic in Maine. As the most northeastern state in the U.S., June twilights are long and romantic, with plenty of soft light. One of June’s highlights is the Kennebunkport Festival, which is a celebration of Maine cuisine, music, and art. Nature lovers can get their fill of natural beauty by visiting Arcadia Natural Park and maybe even catch sight of an elusive moose. Outdoor temperatures in Maine in June range between the 70s and the 50s.
No matter where the open road takes you, having the right rig as your partner is a key part of having the best possible experience. Keep in mind that everyone’s personal needs and preferences are different, so be sure to compare notes and research options to find the one that’s best for you. A great place to start is by asking questions in the comments below.