Check out our recommendations for what to do, where to go and what to eat in some of Cayman’s favorite overseas destinations this June.
Rocky Mountains, Colorado
CULTURE Boasting 300 miles of trails, hiking is what draws most people to the Rocky Mountain National Park. Estes Park is a popular base town to access stunning routes such as Trail Ridge Road and Emerald Lake. For even loftier views, take the Estes Park Aerial Tramway to the peak of Prospect Mountain, while thrill-seekers will love the obstacle course at the Open Air Adventure Park.
DINING Sagebrush Grill keeps it simple – falling-off-the-bone barbecue meat with sides of corn bread and coleslaw in a homey café setting on Grand Lake. Alternatively, pack up a picnic from Glen Haven general store and head to vast picnic area Endo Valley to feast al fresco with views of Fall River Pass.
COCKTAILS The family-run Wheel Bar has been going strong for over a century, serving cocktails and cold beers to refresh guests after a day out hiking. The Barrel is a newer venue, though with the same friendly atmosphere, where a huge range of craft ales, mead, cider or spirits can be enjoyed in the gardens or beer hall.
SHOPPING Head to Spectrum for fine arts and crafts exclusively by Colorado studio artists, including nature photography and hand-turned woodwork. At The Glassworks you can watch fascinating glass-blowing demonstrations and purchase all sorts of luminous colorful pieces.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH Nature lovers are in their element: The butterflies and birds have returned from migration, wildflowers flourish across its meadows, and newborn animals can be spotted. Bighorn sheep, bald eagles, deer and even bobcats are among the impressive residents you could spy in Estes Park
CULTURE The grand Kunstmuseum is crammed with Old Master paintings, including the world’s most extensive collection of works by the Holbein family. Then there are the architectural masterpieces that line Basel’s streets; take a walking tour to learn about iconic modernist buildings.
DINING Chef Tanja Grandits delivers a feast for all the senses at Restaurant Stucki, with a signature Aroma Menu that featuring unusual delicacies such as juniper honey mountain lamb and buttermilk mousse with caramel puffed rice. Dishes are so beautifully presented that you may feel guilty taking a knife to them.
COCKTAILS Live piano only adds to the alluring deco interior of Café des Arts, the perfect spot to treat yourself to a classic cocktail or fine champagne. At intimate Concierge Bar you can sample creations made with Swiss specialties like grappa and Schnapps.
SHOPPING Vivienne Westwood, Kenzo and Cavalli are among the labels you’ll find at Hot Lemon, Basel’s one-stop shop for luxury fashion. Unsurprisingly, the city isn’t short on exquisite watches, either. Specialist store Chronometrie Spinnler & Schweizer has more than 2,600 different models by brands such as Rolex, and also restores vintage timepieces.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH Culture vultures get even more of a visual feast as Art Basel returns to the city (June 4-17), showcasing works by some 2,500 contemporary artists. It’s also high time for another city pastime: swimming. Basel residents love to dive into Rhine or pristine natural pools such as Naturbad Riehen to cool off on summer days.
CULTURE This small, craggy region around the Ebro River Valley is scattered with hilltop castles and ancient monasteries, and is renowned for its winemaking. A vineyard tour is a must; there are some 500-plus bodegas to pick from, including stunning Bodegas Ysios with its wave-like façade, and Bodegas Vivanco, which houses a fascinating viniculture museum.
DINING The town of Logroño is famous for its authentic tapas scene: sample your way along Calle de San Juan, where each atmospheric pintxo bar has its specialty, whether it’s mushrooms at Bar Soriano or pork with blue cheese at La taberna del Tío Blas.
COCKTAILS Though most people associate Rioja with red wine, follow the locals’ lead in asking for a clarete or claro, a white from the village of Cordovin. If a mojito or G&T is more up your street, head to Logroño’s Café Delicias to sip in style amid white leather couches, colorful paintings and fairy lights.
SHOPPING Sombrereria Dulin is worth a stop simply for its charming 1920s façade, but the handcrafted hats for sale inside are equally impressive. If it’s liquid souvenirs you’re after, Vinos El Peso has a great range of local wines and vermouths.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH The wine quite literally flows in the streets on June 29, as the annual Batalla del Vino (Battle of Wine) sees revelers soaking each other with over 20,000 gallons of plonk. The town mayor leads the crowds up to the ‘battleground’ in the hills outside Haro. Dress up in white, grab your weapon of choice – buckets, water pistols, balloons, hoses – and prepare to leave un poco tipsy.
Guernsey, Channel Islands
CULTURE All cobbled streets and Regency architecture, hilly St Peter Port is one of the prettiest harbor towns in Europe. Its attractions include Castle Cornet, an 800-year-old fortress that guards the harbor, and Hauteville House, eccentrically designed by 19th-century author Victor Hugo.
DINING When in Guernsey, gorge on fresh, local seafood. The Crown Club’s fresh crab and spring onion sandwiches are a lunchtime institution, while dinner at elegant spot La Reunion might include a seared scallops or fillet of turbot with crispy oysters and samphire.
COCKTAILS A prime spot for sunset aperitifs, The Beach Terrace has a heated beachside terrace and plenty of locally-made ales on tap. Later in the evening, the chic Leopard Bar (named after its animal-print furnishings) and Red are two favorites with the island’s sophisticated set, offering both classic cocktails and bespoke in-house creations.
SHOPPING Stock up on delicious Guernsey produce, from olive oils to cheeses to gin, at Tapenade delicatessen on North Quay, or handmade chocolates in mind-blowing flavors at Ben Le Prevost’s shop – the island’s answer to Willy Wonka. The Old Quarter is the place to hunt for antiques in eclectic little shops.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH An island-wide celebration of beautiful summer blooms, Guernsey Floral Festival (June 9-17) gives the chance to explore stunning coastal gardens as many private properties open their gates this week to offer tours. You can also sample sweet fruit liqueurs at Haut Maison orchard and distillery, go island-hopping or take part in a green-fingered workshop.
CULTURE All aboard The Sugar Train for stunning views of plantation houses, disused mills and lush vegetation. The only one of its kind in the Caribbean, this double-decker train dates back to 1912, when it was used to transport sugar from plantations to factory. Equally breathtaking is Brimstone Hill Fortress – a UNESCO heritage site that stands 240 meters above sea level.
DINING Fish and lobster don’t come any fresher than at wooden waterfront restaurant Sprat Net on historic Old Road; the proprietors are some of the island’s best-known fishermen. Watch your fish or lobster grilling in the open kitchen, then tuck in among the locals at the picnic tables, often with live music adding to the lively atmosphere.
COCKTAILS Soak up the vibe and sip the namesake spiced rum cocktail at Illusions Bar in Frigate Bay. The venue runs several themed music nights, like Latino Wednesdays and open mic Tuesdays.
SHOPPING Anima Craft Market and Caribelle Batik Factory are wonderful places to buy traditional textiles and clothing, including the island’s renowned batik work.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH Held in the island’s tiny capital Basseterre, St. Kitts Music Festival features a diverse line-up of acts, from soca to jazz to hip-hop. June 27 kicks off five days of performances, and this year headliners include Lauryn Hill, Destra and Patti LaBelle.