Things to Do in May

While you wait for summer’s official arrival, there are still plenty of things heating up in May. Don’t miss May’s must-dos like the Kentucky Derby, National Bike Month, Cinco de Mayo and more.
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Photo By: Getty Images

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National Bike Month

The days are longer and the weather is getting warmer, so now’s the perfect time to leave the car in the garage and dust off your bike. Celebrate National Bike Month by taking your bike for a spin around the best cities for cycling in the US or plan a sip ’n’ spin weekend biking in wine country. Bathing suit season is almost here, so get on your bike now to spin your way to a perfect beach bod.

Lotus Lantern Festival

It’s Buddha’s birthday! One of the largest events in Korea, the Seoul Lotus Lantern Festival is a tradition that celebrates the birth of Buddha and the lanterns symbolize offerings of light, wisdom and compassion. More than 100,000 locals light up one of the city’s busiest streets as they carry illuminated lanterns in the shape of Buddhist symbols.

Kentucky Derby

Grab your Derby hat and a mint julep for “The Greatest 2 Minutes in Sports” at the 140th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, KY. Each year, more than 150,000 spectators attend the Kentucky Derby to witness the first leg of the US Triple Crown.

Mother's Day

Don’t forget about mom this month! Sure, mom would love a travel gift for her next vacation. But she would probably rather spread some quality time with you instead, so treat her to a Mother's Day escape like a fitness retreat, wine tasting, day at the spa or a fancy afternoon tea.

Cannes Film Festival

Film fanatics, the mother of all film festivals is here – Cannes Film Festival. This annual film festival brings Hollywood’s elite to the sun-drenched French seaside town of Côte d'Azur every year in May. If the stars on the red carpet don’t dazzle you, the picture-perfect beaches and chic resorts here certainly will. Or escape the paparazzi and head to the nearby picturesque beaches of Nice, Monte Carlo and St. Tropez.

Cinco de Mayo

Celebrate Mexican heritage on Cinco de Mayo (5th of May) at over 120 official US celebrations, across 21 states, in cities such as Cleveland, Los Angeles, Dallas and Atlanta. No matter where you are on this day, we suggest celebrating Mexico the right away -- feasting on Mexican cuisine and washing it all down with a margarita (or 2).

Monaco Grand Prix

Rev your engines for the world’s greatest and most glamorous motor race! Dating back to 1929, the Monaco Grand Prix takes place on the Circuit de Monaco. A playground for the rich and famous, the Monaco Grand Prix always attracts a bevy of Hollywood A-listers, like stars Cameron Diaz and Antonio Banderas.

The Preakness

Baltimore’s Pimlico Race Course hosts the second leg of the US Triple Crown – the Preakness Stakes. While the Preakness has been a time-honored tradition since 1873, you can expect something new every year like this year’s headlining musical act by Lorde, the 17-year-old double Grammy Award-winning artist.

NYC Fleet Week

NYC hosts Fleet Week -- a celebration of the men and women in the US Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. A tradition since 1984, Fleet Week features several military demonstrations and a chance for the public to step aboard select military ships. Don’t miss the parade of ships in the harbor or musical performances by the sailors and marines.

World BBQ Championship

If you’re craving a good ‘ole fashioned BBQ showdown, watch the best-of-the-best from all over the world compete in Memphis in May's World BBQ Championship in Memphis, TN. Want a taste of the action? Don't miss the Willingham family's booth -- they're the only competitors allowed to sell their Southern specialties to the public.

Memorial Day

It’s finally here – the official kick-off to summer! Pack your new suit and plenty of sunscreen for the first beach weekend of the season.  Check out our 2015 Travel’s Best Beach Award Winners for inspiration on where to go. Whether you crave a family-friendly spot, sun and solitude, or a boisterous party beach, there’s a perfect beach for you just a drive away.

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