Best time to visit Europe

Updated: 11th May 2020

Seasons and Weather in Europe

Working out the best time to visit Europe wholly depends on what you want to do during your holiday - lounging on a sandy beach under the sun or wrapping up for a snowy adventure? Europe’s weather patterns generally follow four distinct seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter. Each of these seasons affects countries differently and has its pros and cons when it comes to travelling. Read on to see which season is the most suitable for your next vacation and where in Europe might suit.

Norway's fjords are beautiful in spring - Best time to visit Europe
Spring is the perfect time to explore Norway's dramatic fjords

Spring in Europe

Spring (March to May) is often considered the most beautiful season as it is when the plants and flowers start to bloom after losing their leaves during winter. Landscapes are transformed by the vivid green and splashes of colour they produce. Across the continent, countries will be warming up, allowing travellers to go sightseeing, hiking and exploring the continent’s natural beauty to their heart’s content without being too hot or cold. It's a great time to check out the wonders of Iceland’s lagoons and glaciers, Turkey’s hot springs and calcium travertines at Pamukkale, and the Fjords of Norway while the heat from the sun is pleasant but not unbearable.

Thinking of visiting Europe? Download a copy of our Europe brochure for inspiration.

Recommend tours and trips to Europe in spring

HandpickedEruption at Strokkur | Golden Circle | Iceland

Iceland Circle

8 Days FROM $3,895
SignatureCappadocia | Turkey

Turkey Unplugged

10 Days FROM $2,095
Croatia's beaches are perfect in summer - Best time to visit Europe
The summer months are the ideal time for a sailing holiday in Croatia

Summer in Europe

If you are looking for sunshine and beaches then a trip to Europe during the summer (June to August) is ideal. In northern Europe this is the perfect time to go hiking through the beautiful wilderness, looking for birds as you go. The summer months are also the best time to spot whales off the coast of Norway and Iceland. In southern Europe travellers can look forward to relaxing on golden beaches, jumping into the warm Adriatic Sea and soaking up the glorious sunshine. Summer presents endless opportunities for fun in the great outdoors without those pesky winter layers of clothing. It's peak season across many countries with sailing holidays in Croatia particularly popular at this time of year. A number of festivals and summer events are held across Eastern Europe at this time of year too with long days of sunlight extending sightseeing potential in northern Europe.

Top Europe Deals
Landmannalaugar | Iceland | On The Go Tours Southern Iceland Explorer - 8 Days Map
23 Aug 2020  10% off
Southern Iceland Explorer - 8 Days
NZD $4,631
was $5,145
Lake Myvatn | Iceland Iceland Country Life - 9 Days Map
05 Sep 2020  10% off
Iceland Country Life - 9 Days
NZD $7,196
was $7,995
Northern Lights | Iceland Land of the Northern Lights - 5 days Map
10 Sep 2020  10% off
Land of the Northern Lights - 5 days
NZD $1,625
was $1,805
Eruption at Strokkur | Golden Circle | Iceland Iceland Circle - 8 Days Map
11 Sep 2020  10% off
Iceland Circle - 8 Days
NZD $4,676
was $5,195
Vatnajokull National Park | Iceland Northern Lights Exploration - 8 days Map
18 Sep 2020  10% off
Northern Lights Exploration - 8 days
NZD $3,686
was $4,095
Frozen landscape | Iceland Northern Lights & Glacier Lagoons - 5 days Map
27 Sep 2020  10% off
Northern Lights & Glacier Lagoons - 5 days
NZD $1,976
was $2,195
Christmas in Iceland | Iceland | On The Go Tours Christmas Land Of The Northern Lights - 5 days Map
23 Dec 2020  10% off
Christmas Land Of The Northern Lights - 5 days
NZD $2,291
was $2,545
New Years in Iceland | Iceland | On The Go Tours New Years Land Of The Northern Lights - 5 days Map
29 Dec 2020  10% off
New Years Land Of The Northern Lights - 5 days
NZD $2,381
was $2,645