Top 10 Coolest Cities in the USA for Summer

After the chill of winter and spring, the higher temperatures of summer can be a welcome change. But depending on where you live, summer weather can easily go from delightfully warm to sweltering and stifling. If you’re looking for a cool reprieve, check out these 13 cities with mild summers. Not only do they make great cool weather vacation spots in the summer, but you may find one of them to be the perfect new city to call home.

1. San Francisco, CA

While Southern California is known for hot summers, the farther you go north, the cooler it gets. Summer might just be the best time to travel to San Francisco with average temperatures in the mid-60s during June, July, and August. If you fall in love with San Francisco on your visit, why not consider making a more permanent move? When you live here, you’re near the beautiful San Francisco Bay and close to top restaurants, shopping, wineries, and scenic beauty. You’ll also get to brag about San Fran’s top New Year’s Eve celebration and the amazing public transportation.

2. Seattle, WA

Seattle summer weather averages about a breezy 65 degrees. Despite the rainy days, residents of this great Western city appreciate its natural beauty — it’s surrounded by mountains and water — and its abundance of things to do. Residents can hang out in the coolest coffee shops by day and experience thrilling sporting events, clubs, and restaurants during the cool summer evenings. And as one of the top U.S. cities for dating, Seattle is an awesome place for singles to live. 

3. Portland, OR

The average summer temperature in Portland is a brisk 67 degrees, which allows residents to get out and enjoy the great outdoors – including nearby Mount Hood. Not quite ready to part ways with this beautiful, unique city after your visit? Luckily, Seattle is one of the best-value West Coast cities for renters. As an apartment dweller in Portland, you can continue to enjoy everything it has to offer year-round and experience some of the many reasons the city’s slogan is “Keep Portland Weird,” including The Naked Bike Ride.

4. Buffalo, NY

Not all cool cities are on the West Coast! This eastern city sports a crisp 69 degrees average temp in the summer. Plus, there are so many exciting things to do and see outside, including the renowned Buffalo Zoo, the Delaware Park, and the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. And if you decide to stay past the summer, you can catch a Bills game or two during the football season.

5. Milwaukee, WI

Wisconsin might not be on most vacationers’ bucket lists, but Milwaukee is a wonderful city to visit in the summer. This northern city’s average temperature is a brisk 70 degrees during June, July, and August. These lower temperatures allow residents and visitors to get out and see the Bronze Fonz, The Basilica of St. Josaphat, the Harley Davidson Museum, and more.

6. Denver, CO

The Mile High City is a comfortable 71 degrees throughout the summer. Residents love seeing the Denver Broncos training camp, visiting the Denver Zoo, and hiking/ biking in the mountains surrounding the city. (Psst! Are you a fan of both Seattle and Denver? We weighed the eats and activities for you in Denver vs Seattle.)

7. Pittsburgh, PA 

Surprisingly, Pittsburgh boasts temperatures around 71 degrees throughout the summer. Residents enjoy the city’s many historical sites, as well as the Phipps Conservatory and the Andy Warhol Museum. Pittsburgh’s prettiest attractions draw in countless visitors every year — and some visitors decide to make their stay more permanent after experiencing everything the city has to offer.

8. Boston, MA

This great city by the water boasts a cool 71 degrees in June, July, and August. Apartment residents here love to row, walk and bike — especially in the Boston Commons area — and visit the New England Aquarium, the Freedom Trail, and a number of other historic sites. Moving to Boston? These are the top five places you need to visit!

9. Minneapolis, MN

Minnesota is known for its cold winters, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that cities like Minneapolis are cooler in the summer, too. The average summer temperature in Minnesota hovers around the low 80s and high 70s, allowing Minneapolis residents to get out and enjoy great shopping, restaurants, parks, and more. Minnehaha Park, with its beautiful scenery and waterfall, is one of the top places to visit.

10. Hartford, CT

Hartford is a breezy 71 degrees in the summertime, allowing apartment residents to get out and spend plenty of time outdoors. Whether you decide to live in Hartford or just go there on a trip, you can visit the Harriet Beecher Stowe House, the Wadsworth Museum, and other sites. Plus, they can spend time at Elizabeth Park, Silver Sands State Park, or the Essex Steam Train and Riverboat.

11. Bar Harbor, ME

This northeastern city offers some of the mildest summers with the average summer temperature in Maine usually peaking at 70 degrees. Enjoy a beautiful coastal summer full of outdoor activities like cycling, kayaking, and water cruises. Best of all? You have easy access to the stunning Acadia National Park. You can also take thrilling ghost walks and wander through quiet museums. There’s something for everyone in this town!

12. South Lake Tahoe, CA

Looking for one of the best cool weather summer vacations? South Lake Tahoe offers plenty to do. Summer temperatures tend to stay in the 70s and 80s, but even on warm days you know you can quickly cool off in the gorgeous lake. Spend a day paddleboarding on the lake, taking in the sounds of nature on a hike, or getting a beautiful, bird’s eye view of the lake on a gondola ride at Heavenly. The city also offers a robust nightlife, and you can cross the state border into Stateline, NV to visit the casinos.  

13. Fairbanks, AK

Alaska is one state you shouldn’t overlook for summer vacations, and Fairbanks keeps it cool with average temperatures staying in the 70s. Let your inner history geek out with the Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum or a gold panning tour, or enjoy the great outdoors with a riverboat trip. You can even experience dog sledding despite the lack of snow in the summer!

Ready to Call One of These Cool Summer Cities Home? 

Dreaming of perfect summer weather? Don’t just take a vacation to one of these 13 cool cities. With ApartmentSearch, it’s easy to find your dream apartment anywhere. Use our advanced filters to find a space that suits your needs. 

Not ready to commit to a long-term or cross-country move? Consider opting for a short-term lease to test the waters. Leave your things behind and take advantage of quality, stylish furniture rental from CORT Furniture Rental. With CORT, you can turn any apartment into a fully furnished apartment — from essential furniture items to decor, linens, and housewares, we’ve got you covered.