This past weekend here in San Francisco, I was sitting outside with some friends, all of us wearing long pants and sweaters, but enjoying the crisp July weather, and discussing how our poor friends and family in the rest of the country were melting in this summer’s monster heat wave. It made me feel lucky to live in a city with “natural” air conditioning — when it gets too warm outside, the warm air interacts with the cool ocean currents to create the cooling fog that’s made this city so famous.

But many travelers aren’t so lucky as to find their hearts in San Francisco, and most likely will be dealing with heat for at least the next month, so here are some tips to stay cool during your summer vacation.


Visit Museums:

Here’s a little secret: where you can find a good museum, you can usually find really good air conditioning. After all, with so many famous items on display, no one wants the paint to melt or the artifacts to get weathered. So keep your cool and duck indoors to take in the latest exhibit or gallery.

Eat Ice Cream:

Vacations are a great time to stray from your diet, so go for the cold stuff in the name of keeping your core temperature down, be it chocolate, vanilla, or your favorite gelato, which you can usually find on most busy downtown corners during the hottest dog days.

Take a Siesta:

There’s a reason why “nap time” is scheduled for the hottest hours of the day. It keeps you out of the blazing sun when it’s at its brightest. Plus, you’ll have more energy for going out later on once the sun sets and the air starts to cool.



Slow down and don’t rush your way through the sweltering heat. The hot weather gives you an excuse to relax by the hotel pool or cross a few extra things off your itinerary. When you jam too much into your vacation day, you don’t remember it all anyway, so let your trip be about quality and not quantity.

Carry Water:

If you feel thirsty, it means you’re already dehydrated, so stay ahead of the curve by carrying your own travel water bottle around wherever you go. It’s good for the environment, will save you from having to spend a lot of money on bottled water, and you can fill your own bottle up at any public water fountain for free.

Stay cool, and enjoy your summer travels!

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