Updated April 22, 2023
Published May 22, 2019
Boom – just like that, it’s almost the end of April. We know, how did that happen? There’s you thinking you’ve got all the time in the world to sort out that holiday and now summer is basically a month away.
Don’t panic, though. The weather is already hotting up across Europe, and there are loads of cracking deals to choose from. So, get your booking face on – we’ve dug into our data to reveal the ten cheapest places for a quick early summer escape in May and June.
The Costa Brava treads the balancing act between mass appeal and unspoiled seclusion like a tightrope walker.
On the one hand, you’ve got the likes of Lloret del Mar and Blanes – every bit classic beach destinations – the other, long, untouched stretches of the typically wild, rocky coastline that gives the Costa Brava its name. With Girona and Barcelona nearby, plus the tiny fishing village of Cadaques (Dali’s old stomping ground) to the north, there’s plenty of culture too.
You’ll find some of good-value deals in Calella and Lloret del Mar.
Seeking a quieter sunshine getaway? Skip down Spain’s coast and you’ll find the lesser-visited but equally as beautiful Costa Almeria – an idyllic alternative to busier costas.
Known for its vast expanse of protected coastal area, holidays here are all about kicking back on unspoiled beaches and resting up in quaint fishing villages. Mojacar is the go-to for lazy days sunbathing and there are secluded coves to explore in San Juan De Los Terreros.
If you want to get active, head for the trails of Cabo de Gata-Nijar natural park.
It’s hard to beat the action-packed Costa Dorada if you’re travelling with little ones this summer. The kids will love PortAventura, an enormous theme park complex containing PortAventura, Ferrari Land and the PortAventura Caribe Aquatic Park.
Nearby Salou, with its brilliant beaches and bargain prices, makes an ideal base. Chilled Cambrils is a little more sedate, while Sitges has a more cosmopolitan vibe. For a quick culture fix, head out to the Roman ruins in Tarragona.
We’ve been banging on about Bulgaria for a good while now, but if you didn’t already know, here goes again: it’s cheap. Really cheap. And the beaches aren’t too shabby, either. With plenty to choose from in this sunny stretch, the Bourgas region is a real Black Sea beauty for an early summer holiday.
There’s culture, too. The old towns at Nessebar and Sozopol, two seaside towns in the region, are packed full of delightful things to see: historic churches, cobbled streets, pretty 18th-century Bulgarian architecture and ancient ruins can be found in the towns.
Find deals aplenty at Bourgas and Sunny Beach.
Spain’s Costa Blanca needs no introduction. King of package holidays, Benidorm, is here after all. Stick to this classic for a lively seafront promenade, sandy beaches – including twin bays Levante and Poniente – and a compact old town crammed full of bars and restaurants.
You’ve also got Aqualandia and Terra Mitica parks right on your doorstep, while romantics can take boat trips to the tiny island of Tabarca, and enjoy sunset strolls out to the scenic Balcón del Mediterráneo, a lookout that juts right out into the Med.
Early summer sunshine is practically guaranteed in this Spanish costa whose name literally translates to ‘Coast of the Sun’.
You won’t be short of cheap holiday deals either – there’s tons of popular holiday resorts dotted along the coastline all vying for your attention. Try Malaga, the gateway to the Costa del Sol, for dreamy beaches and waterfront tapas restaurants, renowned museums and art galleries.
Sun-drenched golden beaches? Sea caves practically begging to be explored? Cheap holiday deals for all kinds of traveller? It’s got to be the Algarve.
In Lagos and Albufeira, you’ll get a mix of beachside resorts offering all-inclusive holidays and family-friendly getaways. Wonderful Blue Flag beaches fringe the coast, as do restaurants, shops and bars.
Faro, in the Algarve’s east, is the gateway to a sleepier side of the region. Stay here to be within touching distance of pretty cities such as Olhão and Tavira, as well as the unspoiled, white-sand beaches of Ilha de Tavira.
Well-connected Dalaman is the ideal jumping-off point for some of Turkey’s most idyllic coastline. Base yourself in party town, Marmaris – picture pine-covered mountains plunging down into a sparkling bay and a bustling marina, and you’re there – for some of the cheapest deals in early summer.
Eating and drinking won’t cost the earth either around here, with pints coming in at around £2.
Early summer sun isn’t all about the Med, not when Morocco’s Atlantic-battered resort of Agadir is also a short hop away.
Fly and floppers head straight for the golden sweep of Plage d'Agadir beach, complete with all the resort trimmings from sun-loungers to jet-skiing. Culture cravers add souk shopping and walks through history at the Kasbah ruins to the itinerary.
Nearby Taghazout has some of the best breaks for confident surfers and the wildlife haven of Souss-Massa National Park is an easy day trip away.
Beat the peak summer crowds and discover a different side to Majorca in May or June. It’ll be warm, but not sweltering, which makes it the ideal time to get sate your adventurous side.
Pick up a hire car and venture inland to the island’s quiet towns, follow coastal hiking paths or get a rural foodie experience to sample local wines and olive oil. Then, relax on any one of Majorca’s best beaches – you’re still on holiday, after all.
*Please note: The research looks at 7-night package holiday searches made through TravelSupermarket between January 1 and April 13, 2023 for departures between May 1 and June 30, 2023. The order of the destinations is based on the median price.
All early temperatures based on average high temperatures in May.