Best Time to Visit France (Weather and Costs)

France is a year-round vacation spot, with countless attractions and reasons to visit all year long. I’ve visited the nation extra instances than I can keep in mind, in all the seasons. Nevertheless, the perfect time to go to France is dependent upon just a few components.

Firstly and most significantly, when deciding when to journey to France, it’s good to think about what it’s that you just wish to do there.

If you happen to’d prefer to benefit from the nation’s world-class ski resorts, you’re finest off visiting within the winter; whereas when you’d choose to spend time enjoyable on France’s gorgeous Mediterranean seashores, you could wish to come when it’s a bit hotter.

General (outdoors of the mountains), the summer season months are inclined to coincide with the height vacationer season, when lodging and different prices are highest and crowds are at their worst. If you happen to’re trying to go to France on a finances, it is likely to be a good suggestion to journey outdoors of those months.

General Greatest Time to Go to France

In my view, Might or September are the perfect instances to go to France.

With its diversified panorama and in depth shoreline, France has a formidable vary of climates starting from dry and scorching Mediterranean within the south to moist and temperate within the north.

Nevertheless, wherever you might be in France, the climate is usually significantly better in summer season than in winter.

Given the elevated costs and crowds of the height summer season season (June-August), personally, my favourite time to go to France is both within the late spring (Might) or early autumn (September).

Temperatures are nonetheless more likely to be heat however there will probably be far fewer crowds and you may usually safe discounts on lodging.

A beautiful scenic view of Eiffel Tower from afar along the river.

Until I’m coming to France for winter sports activities, I normally keep away from visiting throughout the winter months. Temperatures can get fairly chilly, it rains rather a lot, and you may’t benefit from the lovely surroundings or the superb out of doors cafe tradition in the identical method.

Peak Season in France (June – August)

The height season for tourism in France runs from June to August.

That is normally when the climate is at its finest, with lengthy, heat days, and lots of weeks of uninterrupted sunshine. Nevertheless, together with the nice climate, this era additionally attracts a lot bigger crowds.

This time of yr is widespread with each worldwide vacationers and home holidaymakers, and the country’s best attractions are usually full of vacationers.

Moreover, hotels and different accommodations can get costly throughout this time, with costs usually being as much as twice as excessive as they’re in off-season. If you happen to’re touring then, it’s finest to book issues as early as potential.

Bikers at the Tour de France driveway to Col d'Izoard

Regardless of while you go to France, there’ll seemingly be some sort of competition or occasion happening. Bastille Day (La Fête Nationale) is France’s nationwide vacation, held on July 14 yearly and marked by fireworks, avenue parades, and different occasions.

The Tour de France bike race is normally held throughout the summer season, inflicting street closures in sure components of the nation. Village, city, and metropolis events are additionally widespread all through the summer season months.

Shoulder Season in France (April – Might and September – October)

The perfect time to go to France for finances vacationers is throughout the shoulder season, which runs from April-Might and September-October.

The climate is commonly nonetheless fairly good right now of yr and you may count on loads of sunshine, particularly in September.

Moreover, accommodation prices are sometimes decrease than throughout peak season, and the crowds are usually smaller in any respect however the most popular attractions.

Festivals held throughout these months embody the Cannes Film Festival in Might and the Paris Marathon in April.

Off Season in France (November – March)

The low season in France runs from November to March, when temperatures are sometimes chilly and moist.

Other than ski resorts (that are significantly busy from December by February), most locations obtain their lowest numbers of tourists. Some attractions and hotels shut down altogether.

Avoriaz Ski Resort in France, viewd from a chair lift above the town

It may be potential to attain rock-bottom prices on lodging throughout the winter months. Nevertheless, personally, I are inclined to keep away from touring throughout this era because the climate is commonly a bit miserable and there isn’t a lot to do.

When to Go to France For Seashores

July and August are widespread months for seaside holidays, with the perfect climate, longest days, and warmest temperatures.

A number of the finest seaside locations in France embody the French Riviera (often known as the Cote d’Azur), Biarritz, the Médoc Natural Regional Park, and the attractive French Mediterranean island of Corsica.

These locations all get pleasure from day by day temperatures from 25-30 levels Celsius all through the summer season. Nevertheless, the principle draw back is that they will get a bit crowded.

The stunning coast of French Riviera in France

One among my favourite seashores to flee the summer season crowds is Plage Sud, within the Médoc. At 14 kilometers lengthy, it’s actually monumental, so you’ll be able to at all times discover a non-public spot to your self among the many comfortable golden sand and towering dunes.

If you happen to’re into snorkeling, the Mediterranean sea is normally warmest in August and September, because it’s had the entire summer season to heat up!

When to Go to France For Festivals

The perfect time to go to France for festivals is throughout the late spring and summer season months.

Throughout this era, a number of the finest festivals to attend embody Bastille Day (July 14), the Cannes Film Festival (Might), and the Carcassonne Festival of up to date music, theatre, and dance (July).

Throughout every of those festivals, you’ll discover vibrant avenue parades, fireworks shows, and different cultural occasions. You’ll be able to count on temperatures to vary from 20-30 levels Celsius all through these months.

When to Go to France For Cities

This can be a barely tough query to reply as, once more, it largely is dependent upon what you wish to do and see.

General, I believe the perfect time to journey to France for sightseeing in its many fantastic cities is throughout both Might or September when temperatures are snug, costs are average, and there are fewer crowds.

The gorgeous Marseille Old Port with yachts and Basilica of Notre-Dame de la Garde

A number of the finest cities to go to throughout these months embody Paris, Marseille, Bordeaux, Strasbourg, and Good.

When to Go to France For Historic Websites

France is dwelling to a number of the most spectacular castles, historical ruins, and different historic websites in Europe. If I needed to decide the perfect time to go to France for seeing historic websites, I’d most likely go together with late spring or early autumn.

A couple of of the perfect locations price visiting embody the Carcassonne Citadel (a fairytale Thirteenth-century fortress metropolis), Mont Saint-Michel (a similarly-fairytale-like island monastery), and the Pont du Gard (a tremendous 2,000-year-old historical Roman aqueduct bridge).

There are execs and cons of visiting these locations at every time of yr. For instance, whereas they appear extremely picturesque and delightful within the snow, within the spring and summer season the climate is extra nice and the times are for much longer for exploring.

Panaromic view of Carcassonne from the citadel inner wall at sunny day

When to Go to France For Wine

Fortunately, you’ll be able to get pleasure from implausible wine in France any time of yr! There are lots of glorious wine areas all through France, a number of the most well-known being Burgundy, Champagne, and Bordeaux.

Most French winemakers harvest their grapes round September, so that is most likely the perfect time of yr to go to France when you’re excited about visiting a winery and watching the masters at work.

When you have time, I extremely suggest doing a wine-tasting tour throughout your time in France.

Young woman tasting wine standing outdoors on the vineyard in Bordeaux region during a sunset in France

You will have many to select from, however a number of the finest ones embody this wine and cheese-tasting lunch in Paris, this Moët & Chandon champagne tour, and this Bordeaux vineyard tour in Saint-Émilion (the area that produces a few of my favourite French purple wines).

When to Go to France For Low-cost Costs

The bottom costs in France are sometimes discovered throughout the winter months. Nevertheless, as a result of that is very a lot low season, you’ll discover that many locations are shut and there isn’t a lot to do in a number of the smaller locations.

An excellent compromise when you’re wanting to economize is to go to at both finish of the shoulder season, so in both April or October, when extra locations are open and the climate is a bit higher. It’s usually nonetheless potential to make appreciable financial savings on accommodation, airfares, and different journey bills in these months.

When to Go to France For Mountain climbing

Spring and autumn are normally essentially the most nice instances for mountain climbing. It’s heat however not too scorching, the paths aren’t too crowded, and there are fewer bugs. Temperatures usually vary from 12-22 levels Celsius, ultimate for an extended hike.

A few of my favourite hikes in France embody the 13-kilometer Blanc-Martel trail within the Gorges du Verdon, Provence, the hike to the highest of the Brèche de Roland cross within the Pyrenees, and the Chemin Des Muletiers which climbs to the summit of the Puy de Dôme, an iconic volcano within the Auvergne area.

Hiker looking at Lac des Cheserys on the famour Tour du Mont Blanc near Chamoniz, France

Vanoise National Park within the Alps can also be completely gorgeous. It’s a skier’s paradise within the winter, however as soon as the snow has melted there are numerous superb trails to discover.

The Greatest Time to Go to France By Month

As I discussed above, the perfect time to journey to France largely is dependent upon what it’s you intend to do there.

Right here I’ve damaged down what every month of the yr is like, together with the climate and what there’s to do, that will help you determine when to go to France.

France in January

January is arguably the worst time to go to France, except you’re coming for snowboarding and different winter sports activities.

Climate in France in January

The climate in France in January is normally chilly and moist, the times are brief and the nights are lengthy.

Temperatures vary from 0-10 levels Celsius on common, and it’s widespread to have rain, mist, and thick clouds for days on finish. Snow is pretty widespread, particularly in upland and inland areas.

The beautiful Pyrenees mountains in France during January

The perfect locations to go to in France in January are the Alps and the Pyrenees mountains, the place thick snow provides to the spectacular surroundings.

Issues To Do in France in January

The perfect issues to do in France in January embody snowboarding, snowboarding, and different winter sports activities.

If you happen to do end up in one among France’s main cities throughout January, this may also be a very good time to discover indoor sights equivalent to museums and galleries. These locations are sometimes at their least crowded in January.

France in February

February remains to be a chilly month however it’s barely higher than January, with extra sunshine and longer days.

Climate in France in February

The climate in France in February is normally chilly and dry, with temperatures starting from 4-12 levels Celsius. It’s typically cooler and wetter within the north, and coastal areas usually have milder temperatures too.

If you happen to’re touring to France in February, I like to recommend both visiting the mountains (as per January), or the southeast which tends to be barely hotter and drier than the remainder of the nation.

Issues To Do in France in February

Whereas it’s probably not heat sufficient for a lot of out of doors actions, there are nonetheless loads of issues to do in France in February.

You possibly can get pleasure from a crowd-free metropolis break, or shock your beloved with a romantic Valentine’s Day journey. Don’t simply suppose Paris although: Bordeaux, Toulouse, and Marseille are all nice, and less expensive.

Once more, snowboarding and snowboarding are highly regarded actions in February as properly. Costs are usually a bit decrease too in contrast with December and January.

France in March

March sees the primary indicators of spring in France, and there are numerous extra issues to do.

Climate in France in March

The climate in France in March is far milder than the 2 earlier months, with temperatures starting from 8-17 levels Celsius. It’s additionally lots sunnier and extra nice.

Rainfall is extra widespread than in February although, so it’s a good suggestion to pack some waterproofs when you plan to spend any time open air.

Young female traveler enjoying great view on French Riviera in Cannes City

The south of France is especially good right now of yr: Cote d’Azur cities like Good, Cannes and Saint Tropez get pleasure from loads of sunshine and the mildest temperatures.

Issues To Do in France in March

March is a superb time to go to France when you’re searching for out of doors actions. Mountain climbing, biking, and water sports activities equivalent to kayaking are all widespread within the spring months.

It’s additionally an ideal month for meals lovers. March marks the start of France’s spring mushroom season, and eating places all around the nation put together seasonal dishes showcasing native chanterelles, morels, and different tasty varieties.

Lastly, when you’re searching for a cut price, March is a superb time to seek out offers on flights and lodging as properly. It’s nonetheless a really quiet month for tourism in France, so costs could be considerably decrease than throughout the late spring and summer season.

France in April

April is a colourful month in France, with blooming flowers, longer days, and hotter temperatures.

Climate in France in April

The climate in France in April is commonly nice, particularly within the south of the nation, with temperatures starting from 10-20 levels Celsius. You’ll be able to count on loads of sunshine and blue skies all through the month.

There’s much more rain in April although, so that is price allowing for when you’re eager to do any out of doors actions.

A beautiful lavender field in Provence, France

My favourite place to go to in France in April is Provence. This area is understood for its gorgeous landscapes and vibrant colours, that are finest seen throughout the spring months.

Issues To Do in France in April

So long as you’re not delay by a little bit of rain, April is a superb month to go to France when you’re searching for an out of doors journey. Biking is a well-liked exercise right now of yr, as are water sports activities like canoeing and kayaking.

When it comes to cultural actions, April may also be a very good time to go to a few of France’s attractive medieval cities and cities, which will probably be embellished with spring flowers and far quieter than throughout the summer season months.

France in Might

Might in France marks the beginning of summer season, with nice temperatures and loads of sunshine.

Climate in France in Might

The climate in France in Might is delicate and nice, with temperatures starting from 16-24 levels Celsius. It’s additionally sunny, particularly within the south of the nation.

Might tends to be drier than March or April, and the times are lengthy however not too scorching, making this one other nice month for out of doors actions.

Issues To Do in France in Might

If you happen to’re a fan of mountain climbing, Might is without doubt one of the finest months for this (together with September). France has 8 nationwide parks and lots of different areas of pure magnificence, with hundreds of kilometers of well-maintained mountain climbing trails so that you can get pleasure from.

Cannes hosts its well-known annual Movie Pageant every Might and town actually comes alive throughout this month, making it a good time to go to.

Alternatively, head over to the Loire Valley for some sightseeing and wine tasting. This area is named the “Backyard of France” and it’s finest seen in Might when every part is in bloom.

France in June

The height vacationer season in France begins in mid-June, and lots of locations begin to get busy from then onwards.

Nevertheless, the crowds (and costs) are usually smaller in June than in July or August. Subsequently, if you want to plan a visit throughout the summer season, I like to recommend June as the perfect month to go to France.

Climate in France in June

June is commonly top-of-the-line months for climate in France. Within the south, it’s normally sunny and temperatures can attain as much as 28 levels Celsius, whereas within the north temperatures are milder however nonetheless heat sufficient for out of doors actions.

Rainfall is comparatively low throughout this month, making it a good time for each out of doors adventures and metropolis breaks.

Issues To Do in France in June

Among the finest issues to do in France in June is to go to one of many many unbelievable seashores alongside the Atlantic or Mediterranean coasts. The climate is normally heat sufficient for sunbathing, swimming, and different seaside actions.

If you happen to’re searching for a extra cultural expertise, June is an effective time to discover a few of France’s best-known historic landmarks and monuments. There are many occasions happening right now of yr, together with artwork exhibitions, music festivals, and gastronomic gala’s.

Tourtour village in the hills of southern France in Provence

June can also be the beginning of the lavender season in Provence. The hillsides flip purple and the air is comfortable with the scent of lavender – it’s actually gorgeous. One among my favourite locations to go to in Provence to see that is the picturesque little medieval city of Tourtour.

France in July

By July, the height summer season vacationer season is in full swing. Colleges are off for the summer season and many individuals select to take their summer season vacation this month, resulting in elevated costs and crowds.

Climate in France in July

July is normally the most popular month of the yr in France, with temperatures usually exceeding 30 levels Celsius in lots of components of the nation. The south, particularly, can get highly regarded – typically reaching 40 levels for days on finish.

The times are lengthy and sunny, making this a very good time for out of doors actions equivalent to swimming and alfresco eating. Rainfall can also be low throughout July, so it’s not more likely to spoil your vacation plans.

Issues To Do in France in July

If you happen to do wish to go to France in July, I like to recommend avoiding the preferred vacationer websites (particularly in Paris). As an alternative, head to one of many nation’s less-visited areas, such because the central a part of the nation, the northeast, or Corsica.

The perfect factor to do in France in July is to reap the benefits of the nice climate and luxuriate in some out of doors actions. Head to the seaside for a spot of sunbathing, swimming or water sports activities.

Jazz night in Paris

If you happen to’re in France on July 14th – Bastille Day, the nationwide vacation – you’re in for a deal with! All around the nation, there are avenue parades, events, fireworks, and different festivities to get pleasure from. July additionally marks the beginning of the Paris Jazz Pageant, which celebrates jazz music from throughout the globe.

France in August

August is one other busy month for tourism in France. Costs and crowds are inclined to peak throughout this month, so be sure you ebook your journey properly prematurely when you plan to go to then.

Climate in France in August

The climate tends to be related in August as in July, though the evenings are normally a bit cooler and the solar units earlier. You would possibly wish to pack an additional layer to placed on after dinner.

August is a superb month to go to the northwest French area of Brittany. As a result of its northern maritime location, this space is cool and moist for a lot of the yr, however normally enjoys its finest climate in August.

Issues To Do in France in August

August could be a nice time to go to Paris so long as you’re keen to courageous the crowds and better costs. The town is heat and buzzing with exercise throughout this month, and also you’ll discover loads of attention-grabbing occasions happening.

Sunset view of marina in Biarritz, France

If you happen to’re a eager surfer, head to Biarritz within the far southeastern nook of the nation, near the border with Spain. This little city is a world-famous surf spot recognized for its common and highly effective Atlantic swell.

For one thing a bit extra relaxed, rent a motorbike and take a leisurely journey alongside a piece of the Canal du Midi, a 240-kilometer canal in southern France that passes by lovely and diversified surroundings.

France in September

September is one among my favourite months to go to France.

Climate in France in September

All through September, temperatures begin to calm down, though the southern half of the nation tends to remain pleasantly heat till not less than the tip of the month.

September is without doubt one of the finest months to go to the French Riviera. It’s a lot much less crowded and normally cheaper in contrast with the summer season, and the ocean remains to be heat sufficient to swim and snorkel comfortably.

That is additionally a very good time to go to a lot of France’s gorgeous nationwide parks, gardens, and wine areas with out having to fret about it being too scorching or too chilly.

Issues To Do in France in September

September is one other nice month for mountain climbing in France. I went mountain climbing within the breathtaking Vanoise National Park within the Alps in September this yr and it was excellent.

The stunning Vanoise National Park in southeast France's Rhone-Alpes region

If you happen to’re craving some adrenaline, there are a number of locations all through the nation recognized for his or her glorious white-water rafting, such because the Ardèche river close to Lyon. This can be a great rafting tour close to Châteauroux-Les-Alpes.

Additionally, September is without doubt one of the finest months to go wine tasting in France. The grape harvest takes place throughout this time, so many vineyards open their doorways and invite guests to participate within the festivities.

France in October

October is autumn time in France and the colourful fall colours are one among my favourite issues about this month.

Climate in France in October

October is normally fairly a bit cooler than September, with temperatures starting from 8-15°C throughout the day and dropping to round 4-7°C at evening. Rainfall tends to extend because the month progresses, however you’ll be able to nonetheless count on loads of sunshine.

At larger altitudes, equivalent to within the Alps or Pyrenees, there’s usually snowfall right now of the yr.

Issues To Do in France in October

October is a superb time for strolling and mountain biking, now that the climate is cooler and the crowds have dispersed a bit. You’ll discover loads of picturesque trails like these within the Vercors Regional Nature Park close to Grenoble.

October can also be one other nice time to pattern a few of France’s finest wines. You’ll be able to go to lots of the finest wineries in areas like Bordeaux and Burgundy, the place you’ll discover glorious alternatives for wine tastings and tours.

France in November

Because the temperatures begin to cool and there’s extra rain, November is the proper time to bundle up and benefit from the gorgeous autumn colours, and even some snow within the larger altitudes.

Climate in France in November

November temperatures all through France can vary between 5-12°C throughout the day and drop to round 0-4°C at evening. Rainfall can also be fairly widespread in November so it’s finest to carry an umbrella or raincoat with you when you’re exploring open air.

Issues To Do in France in November

November is an effective month for low-cost sightseeing in cities like Paris that are normally a lot much less crowded. You received’t be assured good climate, however you’ll get to get pleasure from a number of the nation’s best-known landmarks principally to your self.

how to visit paris on a budget

November can also be a good time of yr for having fun with warming French cuisine. Go to one of many nation’s many conventional bistros and pattern some basic autumnal dishes like coq au vin, beef bourguignon, or steak frites.

France in December

Regardless of the poor climate, December in France is a festive and atmospheric time to go to. The nation is filled with vacation cheer, as Christmas decorations line the streets and conventional markets spring to life in main cities.

Climate in France in December

The climate in France in December is normally lower than ultimate. Days are brief, it’s chilly and it rains lots.

Nevertheless, temperatures have a tendency to stay above freezing throughout the day, starting from 2-8°C. In larger altitudes equivalent to within the Alps or Pyrenees, you’ll be able to count on heavy snowfall.

Issues To Do in France in December

Regardless of the chilly and moist climate, there are nonetheless loads of issues to do in France in December.

A go to to one of many nation’s traditional Christmas markets is a must-do for any customer. You’ll discover festive stalls full of local crafts, festive treats, mulled wine, and extra. A number of the finest ones are discovered within the japanese cities of Strasbourg and Colmar, however there are additionally loads of others, in Paris, Lyon, and different cities.

At Strasbourg in Alsace, France, you see a traditional half-timbered homes and a water canal.

If you happen to’re searching for a winter wonderland, head as much as the upper altitudes just like the Alps and Pyrenees the place you’ll be able to get pleasure from snowboarding, snowboarding, and magical walks by the snowy panorama.

If you happen to’re trying to escape the colder temperatures, head all the way down to the south of France – cities like Marseille, Good and Montpellier are usually extra temperate right now of yr.

In Conclusion

Every month gives one thing totally different and thrilling, so there isn’t actually a “incorrect” time to go to France. Whether or not you’re searching for a romantic getaway, a culture-filled vacation, or an action-packed out of doors journey, you’ll make sure to have an exquisite time exploring this lovely place.

Personally, I believe the perfect time to go to France is September. Nevertheless, it’s an ideal nation to go to all yr spherical.

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