Another year, another heatwave. It’s hard to beat the heat in the office (unless you’re fortunate enough to have air-conditioning, which a lot of us in Europe sadly aren’t). While it’s obviously great to be out and about on a walking tour, you need to keep a few things in mind so you can keep cool and enjoy the experience.
SANDEMANs operates rain or shine, but we take plenty of precautions to make sure that you are comfortable and safe while you explore any of our 20 cities. Whether that’s running slightly shorter tours or taking more breaks in the shade, running tours at earlier/ later times of the day or showing you where to fill your water bottle up, we’ll do everything we can to keep you cool in the summer heat.
Here are a couple of extra ways you can chill out this summer:
1. Top up with the right fluids
Simple, easy, indisputable advice – when you feel the burn, you’re also losing water. Sooner than you know, you’ll start feeling dizzy, lightheaded and tired out so try to keep that liquid intake up. We’re firmly team water during this heatwave. Say no to fizzy drinks and diuretics (e.g. coffee, tea and alcohol, things which make you go to the loo more) before and during a tour. Believe us, for all the pub crawls, beer and wine tasting experiences we run, we all know that water is the one and only adult drink (at least while the sun is blazing. After dark it’s maybe a different story…)
2. Find some shade – or make your own
Plenty of our tours take scenic routes through some of Europe’s loveliest parks, as well as giving you lots of gorgeous architecture to marvel at. But what happens when you leave the leaves behind? Why not take sun protection to the next level? Sun cream and peak caps are valued accessories for many a traveller in hotter climes, but if you can find the space in your bag, an Aussie bush hat or a Sombrero might make you the hit of the tour! An umbrella can also do the trick, but of course, please try not to block the view (or poke the eye!) of your fellow tour-goers.
3. The joy of gelato
Ice cream in summer is essential, and we aren’t just making that up; it’s scientifically proven that eating ice cream makes you happier. Competition to scoop up the title of best heladeria in Seville is pretty hot, ironically. Bolas sees queues out the door come rain or shine, as does Andalusian powerhouse La Abuela. However, Seville’s locals would tell you that nothing beats Helados Rayas: at just a 5-minutes walk from the imposing-yet-shady Setas sculpture on Calle Imagen, so your frozen treat is well protected from harmful UV rays. It might just leave you as happy and energetic as the guides we work with!
4. Hit the beach, no matter where you are!
Not all of us are lucky enough to live in a city with a beach like Barcelona’s, and fewer still can claim to have 13 beaches to choose from (looking at you, Tel Aviv). But why should us city-slickers have to suffer? Well, we don’t, actually.
You might be surprised that sand (yes, real sand) can be found at Cramond and Portobello beaches, which are only a short bus ride away from Edinburgh, and Copenhagen’s Amager Strandpark is only a hop, skip and a taxi ride 10 minutes from the middle of it all.
Berlin has some of the best lakes in Europe – there are even books about all the lakes in the German capital, so don’t forget to pack your trunks.
Londoners have their own city beach on Southbank, though if you’re looking for something quintessentially British, you might opt to visit one of the capital’s various outdoor pools (known as Lidos) – the one at the Oasis Sports Centre is conveniently located just around the corner from the Covent Garden meeting point for our free tour of London!
5. Get those breathable fabrics on:
Not all shorts and t-shirts are created equal folks! Ditch the polyester and dark colours – natural fabrics like cotton in white, cream, beige etcetera will help to keep you cool on your European adventure.
Keep these tips in mind so that the sun doesn’t set your European travel dreams in flames! And if in doubt, be sure to ask your tour guide for advice; they’ll be only too happy to tell you their local tips for beating the heat this summer.