Mumbai’s scorching heat has several of us seeking cooler climes — be it at hill stations within India or in foreign countries. However, there are some places that attract tourists only during the summer months, at times despite the high temperatures. What coaxes them to make these trips? Find out.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The world’s biggest street party usually happens in February, one of the hottest months in the southern hemisphere, when the Rio summer is at its peak. Though there are carnivals that take place all over Brazil, the most famous is the Rio Carnival that attracts tourists in hordes. The samba parade, which marks the end of the celebrations, finds itself on the bucket-list of many a traveller. Log on to: rio-carnival.net
Running of the bulls
Though bull runs happen throughout the country, the one at Pamplona is the most popular and traditionally takes place in the Spanish summer. Broadcast live on local channels, it is part of the San Fermin festival that takes place in July, when temperatures are at their peak. After launching two rockets, the bulls charge behind the runners for 825 metres. The run usually lasts between three-four minutes and attracts tourists from around the world.
Log on to: sanfermin.com
For a few months every year (from May to July), in certain parts of Norway, the sun never sets. In other areas, it goes down after midnight. The phenomenon is caused by the tilt in the Earth’s axis — an imaginary line between the north and south poles. For those looking to soak in this Norwegian sun, it can be experienced only in the summer months. And a number of activities planned in the region at the time provide added incentive.
Log on to: visitnorway.com
Mount Fuji, Japan
Scaling the World Heritage Site is only possible during the climbing season, which is from early July to early September and also happens to be summer in Japan. For the rest of the year, scaling the mountain is prohibited. So popular are these climbs that every year, over 3,00,000 people are known to attempt them. Such are the crowds that, at times, climbers have to wait in line for their turn to scale the mountain.
Log on to: fujisan-climb.jp
See the light
Just before the monsoon hits — around June — and offers a breather from the incessant heat, millions of fireflies light up the night in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra. The event marks the beginning of the rainy season and is an awe-inspiring experience. The firefly flashes are part of a complex system of insect attraction. Male fireflies use distinctive patterns of flashing and flying to send signals to females of the species. Females then respond with a flash after an interval. The flashes and patterns are unique to each species (there are about 2,000 firefly species).
Log on to: grassroutes.co.in
Australian Open, Melbourne
It is the same story every year. Ball boys and girls collapse. Players withdraw due to the intense heat, there are multiple injury time-outs, matches are suspended due to the weather, and fans are scurrying around for shade. But despite the high temperatures of the summer Down Under, the year’s inaugural Grand Slam, held in January, remains a must-visit for sports fanatics, who travel from all over the world to cheer for their favourite players.
Log on to: ausopen.com
Konkan region, India
Humidity levels peak around April and May in the Konkan belt. However, these months also mark the mango season along the coast. Tourists head to farm-stays to taste the Alphonso and mango-related products fresh off the farm. At some places, visitors can also help with the plucking, grading and packaging process, or learn to differentiate between the various varieties found in the region.
Log on to: kokanparyatan.com